Jack COLLISTER - 27/10/2022

Guy Fawkes night : probably the strangest celebration on the British calendar. But why do the Brits still celebrate this gruesome day? Guy Fawkes night - also known as Bonfire Night - is celebrated every year on November 5th, usually with firework displays and publicly organized bonfires (a large, outdoor fire used for burning garbage or as part of a celebration). The history of this celebration goes back to 1605 when a group of English catholics tried to kill King James I by exploding the parliamentary building, the House of Lords. Their plan was unsuccessful however, and this small group of 'terrorists' were trialed and executed. After this, the people of Great Britain made fires around the country to celebrate the king's survival. One of the men who was executed was Guy Fawkes. He became a symbol of this date and children made effigies of him with old clothes and straw which was then burnt on the large fires. Very gruesome indeed!

Since then, Guy Fawkes has also become an anti-hero, a symbol of revolution and a fight against the government; the 'Guy Fawkes mask' - which you might recognize - has been made famous by the film 'V for Vendetta' and also Anonymous, the online hacker group. In recent years, it has become less and less common to put an effigy or a model of him on the fire.

But back to the question I asked before: why do the Brits still celebrate this day? Well, like a lot of holidays, the historical context is not really important anymore. It's more of an excuse to meet with your family. My personal memories of this day are very pleasant, particularly when I was a child, eating marshmallows and toffee apples (an apple on a stick with hard caramel around it... Yes, yes, more bizarre English food is what you're probably thinking). It is also an excuse to watch fireworks and light a big fire. And let's be honest, on a cold winter's day, everybody loves a big fire!

Remember, remember, the fifth of November.

Jack COLLISTER - 27/10/2022

Guy Fawkes night : probably the strangest celebration on the British calendar. But why do the Brits still celebrate this gruesome day? Guy Fawkes night - also known as Bonfire Night - is celebrated every year on November 5th, usually with firework displays and publicly organized bonfires (a large, outdoor fire used for burning garbage or as part of a celebration). The history of this celebration goes back to 1605 when a group of English catholics tried to kill King James I by exploding the parliamentary building, the House of Lords. Their plan was unsuccessful however, and this small group of 'terrorists' were trialed and executed. After this, the people of Great Britain made fires around the country to celebrate the king's survival. One of the men who was executed was Guy Fawkes. He became a symbol of this date and children made effigies of him with old clothes and straw which was then burnt on the large fires. Very gruesome indeed!

Since then, Guy Fawkes has also become an anti-hero, a symbol of revolution and a fight against the government; the 'Guy Fawkes mask' - which you might recognize - has been made famous by the film 'V for Vendetta' and also Anonymous, the online hacker group. In recent years, it has become less and less common to put an effigy or a model of him on the fire.

But back to the question I asked before: why do the Brits still celebrate this day? Well, like a lot of holidays, the historical context is not really important anymore. It's more of an excuse to meet with your family. My personal memories of this day are very pleasant, particularly when I was a child, eating marshmallows and toffee apples (an apple on a stick with hard caramel around it... Yes, yes, more bizarre English food is what you're probably thinking). It is also an excuse to watch fireworks and light a big fire. And let's be honest, on a cold winter's day, everybody loves a big fire!

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