skip to Main Content

In Memory of Guy Fawkes

It was said that Guy Fawkes came to be “the last man to enter Parliament with honest intentions.”

Guy Fawkes: Unravelling the Myth of “The Last Man to Enter Parliament with Honest Intentions”

Introduction: The Enigmatic Legacy of Guy Fawkes

The saying “the last man to enter Parliament with honest intentions” has become synonymous with Guy Fawkes, an iconic figure in British history. This blog post seeks to unravel the myth surrounding Fawkes and explore the historical context that led to the creation of this enduring phrase.

I. The Gunpowder Plot: A Conspiratorial Cautionary Tale

A. Historical Background:

  • The Early 17th Century: The Gunpowder Plot unfolded in the early 17th century, a time marked by religious tensions in England.
  • Catholic Persecution: The Catholic minority faced persecution under the Protestant monarchy, prompting a group of conspirators to plan an act of rebellion.

B. Guy Fawkes’ Role:

  • The Gunpowder Conspiracy: Guy Fawkes, along with other conspirators, aimed to blow up the House of Lords during the State Opening of Parliament in 1605.
  • Religious Motivations: Fawkes, a devout Catholic, sought to end the persecution of Catholics by eliminating Protestant leadership.

II. The Capture and Legacy of Guy Fawkes

A. Foiling the Plot:

  • Anonymous Letter: A mysterious letter warning against attending Parliament led to the discovery of Fawkes guarding barrels of gunpowder.
  • Fawkes’ Arrest: Fawkes was apprehended on November 5, 1605, beneath the House of Lords.

B. Folklore and Symbolism:

  • The Bonfire Night Tradition: The failed Gunpowder Plot is commemorated annually in the United Kingdom with Bonfire Night on November 5th.
  • Guy Fawkes Effigies: Burning effigies of Fawkes on bonfires became a symbolic act of celebrating the prevention of the plot.

III. The Saying: “The Last Man to Enter Parliament with Honest Intentions”

A. Evolution of the Phrase:

  • Cultural Imprint: Over time, the phrase emerged as a commentary on the perceived dishonesty of politicians.
  • Protest Symbol: During various political movements, the Guy Fawkes mask became a symbol of protest against perceived corruption and oppression.

B. Modern Usage:

  • V for Vendetta: The phrase gained renewed popularity with the graphic novel “V for Vendetta” and its film adaptation, further embedding it in popular culture.
  • Anonymous Movement: The Guy Fawkes mask became an emblem for the Anonymous movement, symbolizing resistance against perceived injustices.

IV. Interpreting the Legacy: Historical Perspectives

A. Ambiguity Surrounding Fawkes’ Intentions:

  • Debates Among Historians: Historians debate whether Fawkes acted out of genuine conviction or was manipulated by other conspirators.
  • Religious Zealot or Pawn: Some view Fawkes as a zealous Catholic, while others see him as a pawn in a larger political game.

B. Symbolic Complexity:

  • Resistance vs. Terrorism: Fawkes’ legacy is interpreted differently—either as a symbol of resistance against oppression or as a terrorist who aimed to destabilize the government.
  • Legacy of Ambiguity: The ambiguity surrounding Fawkes’ intentions adds layers of complexity to his historical legacy.

V. Conclusion: Unmasking the Myth

In conclusion, the saying “the last man to enter Parliament with honest intentions” encapsulates the enduring intrigue and ambiguity surrounding Guy Fawkes. Whether seen as a misguided zealot or a pawn in a larger political game, Fawkes’ legacy continues to be shaped by historical interpretation, cultural symbolism, and its place in the ongoing discourse about the integrity of political intentions. As we remember the failed Gunpowder Plot each year, it serves as a reminder of the complex interplay between history, myth, and the enduring power of symbolic narratives. 🔥🎭

#GuyFawkes #HistoryMyths #PoliticalSymbols”

A Message From Jessie

If you are enjoying the writing brought to you Donc, Voilà Quoi please comment & share and don’t forget follow me on Instagram, Twitter and Pintrest. Small gestures like this will help me to grow my audience and keep bringing you my original work.

Please also be sure listen to my Mind Your Language Podcast which is all about my love of language and how it affects our lives.

Please also note that some of my posts may contain affiliate links. If you click on an affiliate link and later make a purchase, I may receive a small commission.  Clicking on an affiliate link may earn a commission does NOT result in additional charges to you or cost you anything extra but it helps to support me to keep bringing you honest work.

Amazon has graciously invited me to take part in their Amazon Influencer Program. As such I now have a Storefront on Amazon. Don’t forget to check it out here Donc Voilà Quoi on Amazon for all my favourite products.

Jessie Louise Griffiths

Hi, I'm Jessie Louise. I foundered Donc Voilà Quoi while living in Tours, France in 2015 when I fell in love with the phrase. I have a longstanding love of language. When I'm not talking or writing, you'll find me out and about in nature, watching a classic whodunit or cooking up a storm with my boys. For enquiries, please email me on

This Post Has 0 Comments

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back To Top