Why We Remember The Fifth Of November

Why We Remember the 5th November
Luke Ward
|2 mins read

We have all heard the phrase “Remember, remember the fifth of November” – but what are we remembering?

What does it mean and where does it come from?

That’s what were here to find out!

It all started with twenty barrels of gunpowder!

On the 5th November 1605, there was a person named Guy Fawkes, he was caught in the cellars of the Houses of Parliament with over twenty barrels of gunpowder.

Guy Fawkes was then classed as a traitor alongside his people for plotting against the government.

What was his verdict?

Guy Fawkes was sentenced to death and the form of the execution was one of the most horrific ever accomplished, he was hung, drawn, and quartered.

This was done to show the seriousness of the crime of treason.

The next year (1606) was the start of an annual tradition for the King and Parliament to give a speech to remember the event.

Lancelot Andrewes delivered the first of many Gunpowder Plot speeches.

This tradition, alongside the nursery rhyme, made sure that this crime would never be forgotten, hence the words “Remember, remember the 5th of November“.

The poem is sometimes referred to as “Please to remember the fifth of November”.

The point in having this poem and remembered every year is to warn each new generation that treason will never be forgotten.

The 5th of November today.

In the UK, the 5th November is also known as Bonfire Night and Guy Fawkes Night.

It’s a day that is still remembered each year with fireworks and bonfires, finishing with the burning of a Guy Fawkes doll.

The dolls are made by children by stuffing old clothes with crumpled newspapers and other stuff to look like a man.

What’s the Rhyme?

Finally, here’s the full rhyme if you didn’t know it:

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

In England, the 5th November is mainly known as bonfire night, and is still remembered each year with fireworks and bonfires.


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