409 years ago today in 1605 the plot to destroy the English Parliament buildings with 36 barrels of gunpowder, killing King James I, much of the Privy Council and all of the country’s members of Parliament was uncovered and prevented.
Guy Fawkes, a professional soldier formerly in Spanish service, was discovered near a pile of firewood which was covering 36 barrels of gunpowder beneath thePalace of Westminster (Parliament building). The powder in those barrels was twice the amount needed to level the House of Lords, it has since been calculated that all within a radius of 100 metres (or 300+ feet) would have been killed and the explosion would have been heard up to five miles away (see image one).
The audacious plot was hatched by a group of radical Catholic Englishmen lead by Robert Catesby (see image two). Fawkes was hired by the group as an expert in gunpowder who would pack, prime and ignite the powder stacked in the cellar beneath the House of Lords.
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