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The Gunpowder Plot: The Five Conspirators

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These are the Houses of Parliament today. They form the most recognisable Government buildings in the world. And this is what they looked like in 1605. Guy Fawkes is the name we associate most closely with the plot, when, at about midnight on the 4th of November 1605,

a search party discovered him, lurking in the vaults beneath the House of Lords. He was just hours away from blowing apart the very fabric of the English state. Out, out! What is your name? Eighteen months of meticulous planning and deception were foiled by this arrest. What are the names of your accomplices in this terrible endeavour? Well of course this is only the beginning, as far as the government are concerned. They know nothing, apart from the fact that they've caught this stranger standing guard over nearly a tonne of gunpowder. Take him away! But who are his associates? Who is he linked to? To start, Fawkes isn't saying anything. Indeed, when he's dragged before the sleepy King on the morning of the 5th November

and the King asks him why on earth he should have done such a thing, Fawkes said: 'I wanted to blow you back to your Scottish mountains.' So why did Guy Fawkes want to blow the King back to his Scottish mountains?

While writing a book exploring the religious backdrop to the Gunpowder Plot, I looked at this question again and again. But what soon became clear was that, despite his popular association with the plot, the answer to it didn't lie with Fawkes. He is not the key to the story. The ring leader of the plot was Robert Catesby, not Guy Fawkes, although Guy Fawkes has got lumbered with it. He's got lumbered with being burnt on November 5th. I don't think we can really understand the plot unless we understand Catesby. People adored him. He was one of those men people would follow to death. There's a charisma to Catesby, if you like, a black glamour to the man. He is a mix of a very devoted Catholic; at the same time a man whose purpose in this particular plot is revenge. There were five core plotters: Catesby, Fawkes and three others. Thomas Percy, the oldest of the group, soon to become a bodyguard in the royal household; Tom Wintour, who was Catesby's cousin and right-hand man; and Jack Wright, who was considered to be the best swordsman in England. They saw themselves as being soldiers of Christ the true soldiers of Christ. They had swords engraved with the words: 'The Passion of Christ'.

Video Details

Duration: 3 minutes and 34 seconds
Country: United Kingdom
Language: English
Views: 335
Posted by: totleigh on Nov 2, 2013

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lBVrPurrqCw&list=SP6B0309E79C5FA1D6&index=1--------------------
http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/people/guy_fawkes#p00l2q80------------------
http://www.schulmediathek.tv/Englisch/Zeitgeschichte/Gro%DF%9Fbritannien/Catholics%2C+gunpowder+and+terrorism%3F/

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