The Gunpowder Plot

Pauline Croft explains the origins of Bonfire Night.

The Discovery of the Gunpowder Plot, Laing Art Gallery (Tyne and Wear Museums), c. 1823. By Henry Peronett BriggsThe Gunpowder Plot is one of the most notorious events in British history. The shock it caused can still be sensed in the words of the House of Commons Journal for 5 November 1605. ‘This last night the upper House of Parliament was searched ... Thirty-six Barrels of Gunpowder in the Vault under the House, with a purpose to blow King, and the whole Company, when they should there assemble’. What lay behind this extraordinary conspiracy? We need to go back at least a decade before 1605 to understand its origins.

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