Chisel Treason – Bonfires and What Not

Posted by Alexander Cartwright on

Remember remember the fifth of November, Gunpowder treason and plot.
We see no reason why gunpowder treason should ever be forgot.

With all the gathering around bonfires and watching spectacular firework displays, it would be easy to forget what on earth we’re trying to remember. And although some spend the evening desperately trying to calm their terrified pets that are wondering what the hell is going on (no Fluffy, Donald Trump hasn’t pressed the big red button just yet), the majority are engaging in a good deal of merriment at the expense of a Guy, last name Fawkes. It’s ironic that a night of such wonderment would stem from a story so incredibly gruesome. Chisel Tree are here to remind you how it all fits together.

On the 5th November 1605 Guy Fawkes and a group of 13 Catholics attempted to carry out the Gunpowder Plot, intending to blow up King James I and his government whilst they were in the Houses of Parliament.

The reason Mr. Fawkes and his mates wanted King James dead so badly is because they had expected James to be more tolerant of Catholics when he became King, unfortunately for Fawkes, James turned out be the opposite and had ordered all Catholic priests to get out of England. Must have been like when there’s a substitute teacher instead of your normal one at school and your thinking “MESS ABOUT LESSON” but then they turn out to be even stricter than Mrs. Clayton and send you and Tom to the Headmaster and you feel like blowing up the school.

Although Guy Fawkes has become the symbolic villain of our story he was only a small part of the 13 man plot and was in no way the orchestrator of the whole thing, that was a man named Robert Catesby, If Catesby was McCartney, Fawkes was definitely Ringo but it was Fawkes, however who was captured guarding the gun powder. He was heard to say “I don’t know nothing about no plot man, all I know is that some dude with a feather in his hat offered me a gold doubloon to guard these here barrels, so that’s what I did son! A plot!? Ain’t nobody got time for that!”…Anyway, they tortured him for three days until he gave up the names of his co-conspirators.

Contrary to popular belief, Guy Fawkes wasn’t burnt at the stake, many believe this to be this case because of the traditional burning of the Guy that takes place on bonfire night, in fact this tradition began when King James encouraged citizens to build bonfires on their property to celebrate the failure of the plot, many then also began burning effigies of the Catholic Pope, a detail which later evolved into the burning of the Guy.

Fawkes himself reached his end in a very different fashion, the plan was for him to be “hung, drawn and quartered” a method of execution reserved for those guilty of committing the high crime of treason. This terrifying process involved being led through the packed streets of London to the gallows by horse drawn carriage, then hung by the neck until just before the point of death, you would then be cut down, emasculated, disembowelment , decapitated and hacked into quarters…We like to keep it nice and light here at chisel Tree. (I know what you’re thinking – “I just got over Glenn and the baseball bat on the Walking Dead and now ChiselTree are blogging about disembowelment, what’s the world coming to??) But Fawkes, realising the agony that was to come, purposely jumped from the gallows, breaking his neck in the process and saving himself from the pain of the torturers blade. Fawkes’s body was still quartered and the four portions of his body were transported to the four corners of the kingdom, to warn anyone else thinking of committing treason.

So after that lovely story i'm sure you're in just the mood to do some online gift shopping so why not check out our christmas collection.... Because the only thing left after Bonfore night is the countdown to the big man himself making an appearence.

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