Remember, remember

**the fifth of November
Gunpowder, treason and plot.
I see no reason why gunpowder, treason
Should ever be forgot…

**The Gunpowder Plot

Your (pre-packaged) thoughts?

Um, aside from the fact that even joking about an assassination of Obama is very un-Christian and in extremely poor taste?

Err, he’s not talking about assassinating the President-Elect.

Obama? It’s a rhyme made up about a foiled assassination attempt against a KING, James I - by those who foiled the plot mind you!

It’s still celebrated in Britain every November 5 as Guy Fawkes day, ironically (and tastelessly in my opinion) with displays of fireworks.

Got to admire King James’ cojones though - the plot was first discovered a good week or more beforehand, but he sat on the information so as to let the conspirators dig themselves a deeper hole and then ‘conveniently’ had them rounded up the day before the sitting of Parliament.

Wow, you need to put down the pipe.

This had NOTHING to do with our new President.

Today is November 5th when, to this day in the UK they light fireworks in commemoration of a Catholic assassination attempt on King James.

Forgive me for my error then. I was in fact aware that today is Guy Fawkes day: however, it’s hardly unreasonable to misinterpret a reference to the attempted assassination of a head of state the day after a presidential election…you should be a little bit more explicit about your intent next time.

Um, today is November 5th. This is the “Non-Catholic” discussion forum.

That’s as explicit as I should need to be. No one else had any difficulty understanding what I was talking about.

My first thought was “V for Vendetta”.

Yes. Today is a reminder of how viscious papists can be when you want to be. Glad the RCC doesn’t advocate rebellion and uprisng anymore. You guys are alright :slight_smile:

Of course, it’s rather . . .interesting. . .that Robert Cecil knew so much about the plot so early. . .

Especially when one considers that James himself was sympathetic to Catholics in the early part of his reign.

But Cecil was afraid that if James advocated any type of Catholic toleration that his own personal fortune and power might ultimately suffer. After all, France had by this time achieved a ‘balance’ with its Hugenots which would last another 70 years. Spain was not about to send another Armada so there was no threat of invasion. Germany had likewise achieved balance with Catholic south and Protestant north.

England was still at least half Catholic at the turn of the 17th century. If not for this. . .timely. . .‘proof’ of the evil popish empire, James may well have come around to Catholicism himself (as later his grandsons, Charles and James the 2nd and 7th, did) and England would not have suffered a bloody Civil War among other evils. Europe would have become mostly Catholic by the end of the 17th century, and possibly as a unified entity would have been able to achieve unity with the Orthodox as well. The Muslim empire might have finally been totally defeated. Many bloody wars, including those of the 20th century, might never have been fought.

But we’ll never know.

Of course :rolleyes:

Do me a favour. Read some REAL history, about Saints Thomas More, John Fisher, Margaret Clitherow, Robert Southwell - not to mention Protestants like Michael Servetus who were slaughtered by other Protestants in the name of religion … the English Civil War (moderate royalist Protestants v radical Puritans) and the numerous witches executed under that same benign and innocent victim James I …

and see how utterly vicious we Catholics are and how peacable non-Catholics are :eek:

Well, he didn’t say ALL Catholics were vicious, just that Catholics were capable of viciousness, which happens to be true.

You’re right to point out that it is true of non-catholics as well.

It might be well to let him express his own thoughts rather than doing it for him.

Re: Robert Cecil

Yes, there has always been an element of convenient political “surprise” to the episode.

This is not to say that these gentlemen weren’t really trying to kill Jamie, but it does seem that they could have been foiled well prior to the event. Letting them go almost right up to the act before exposing them could very well have been Cecil’s idea to get Jamie hardened against Catholics, which again as you mention, he was not until then.

It bears remembering that puritans had welcomed James, thinking him one of them since he had grown up in the Calvinist homeland of Scotland at the knees of several Prsbyterian divines.

We don’t know how the execution of his mother Mary by his cousin Elizabeth effected him, but that too would be interesting to know. That Mary (a Catholic), in her day, was involved in a plot to assassinate Elizabeth had certainly fed into the popular consciousness concerning these things.

Also a useful political eventuality for the puritan camp.

Oh I think we can get at least some hint of how it affected him.

Put it this way - James, although crowned king as a baby, was all grown up and had been in personal control of the government of Scotland for a good six years already when Mary was executed.

Philip II of Spain was so incensed by her death that he sent the Spanish Armada to attempt to invade England. While England was busy with that, James, had he been so inclined, woud’ve had the ideal opportunity to attack from the north while England was weak.

Instead, not a peep from him, then or at any time in the future. Sounds like either he didn’t really care a fig about her, or else that Elizabeth had told him he’d end up succeeding her and so he decided to wait and bite his tongue. Most unlikely - Elizabeth was incredibly skittish about naming her successor, since she’d been such a focus of rebellion herself during her own older sister’s, having been named heir to the throne.

Has somebody forgotten it - is it not part of our childhood history lessons.

"Post-Reformation and anti–Catholic literature often personified Fawkes as the Devil in this way. From Puritan polemics to popular literature, all sought to associate Fawkes with the demonic. However, his reputation has since undergone a rehabilitation, and today he is often toasted as, “The last man to enter Parliament with honourable intentions.” - wiki :hmmm:

I wonder what percentage of people in the UK ‘remember’ what ‘fireworks night’ was originally all about - beyond ‘somebody tried to blow up Parliament’?

humnnn! this brings to mind the story of Esther.

“Blessed are those who do not see, yet they believe.”

But, often times, how something is said is just as important as what is said.

Hmmm … what I heard is that non-Methodists are peaceable – or was it non-Presbyterians?

I’ve never understood a holiday that celebrated the fact that parliment wasn’t blown up. Thats like having a celebration for everything we didn’t do. but then they also have comic relief day which is weird. Cars with red noses. British. Weird. Next they will have a holiday celebrating every food you can boil.

I don’t think Elizabeth had to do a deal with James, naming him successor, he was next in line provided she did not bear a male heir.

He knew perfectly well the big prize was his.

And yes, this probably has a lot to do with remaining quiet while she was busy with Spain.

James is highly underrated as a monarch. We hear all about his alleged homosexuality and so on, but in point of fact he was a very cautious and intelligent monarch who had the misfortune of ruling in a very tempestuous time over a people the majority of whom were not happy with him.

Elizabeth had the advantage of a remarkable PR machine personified by Walsingham that James did not.

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