For those of you who dont know:
Robert Catesby, a Roman Catholic of the Jesuit Order, living under the first Scot King to rule both Scotland and England simultaneously. (King James) decided that he would assassinate the King, and the entire Parliament in order to bring about regieme change which would put the nation back to Catholic, rather then protestant.
The year is 1605, we are between the Reformation and the English Civil War, both of which were fought due to this rivalry between denominations of Christianity.
During the State Opening of Parliament, both Houses (Commons and Lords) would assemble in a single Chamber with the Royal Presence in Westminster Palace. Along with twelve other people, a plan was decided to use gunpowder keggs to distroy the palace whilst the ceremony was in progress. This was on the back of a failed plot by others to try and kidnap King James at the Tower of London and force the Government to change its allegience back to Rome.
The idea was that the gunpowder keggs, bought and stored at one of the perpertrators london residences on the south bank, would be carried across the river by boat in small numbers so as not to cause undue attention. These would be put in the Undercroft of the palace. In those days the Palace was a hive of activity amoungst merchants, a giant market as well as the seat of Government, and it was possible to rent spaces in the undercroft. One such space up for rent was below the Chambre for the Ceremony.
The day before the state opening, which had already been delayed from September, a letter was sent to the authorities about the plan. We do not know who wrote the letter, but one must remember that whilst a minority, some prominent Romans would still be serving in the Government, would almost certainly be present for the Opening, and some found it quite distasteful that they not be warned of the threat considering they could be killed and were Catholics.
Early in the morning of the State Opening of Parliament, the authorities scoured Westminster Palace and discovered the gunpowder in the undercroft and caught Guy Fawkes, a Catholic Foreigner, who was Ex-Military, supposed to be gaurding and lighting the fuse at the appointed time.
Fawkes was arrested, and the gun powder removed in time for the ceremony to continue. Fawkes initially claimed he acted alone, giving the conspirators time to leave London, refortify at their homes in the country and mount an armed offensive. but he cracked, and the authorities started to put the pieces together concerning prominent vocal catholics.
Fawkes was sent to The Tower of London, whilst the authorities took on the main band of rebels at their residences in the country. There was some violent fighting, and the ringleader catesby was killed. Ten weeks of investigation by the Authorities based at the Tower of London commenced.
At the end of January the following year, the Trials began at Westminster Hall, and included prominent Jesuits who may have known about the plan and not warned the authorities. All bar one claimed innocence but on idiotic and semantic grounds. Some were dragged through the streets of London by horses, before being executed at Tyburn. But others, Fawkes included, were exectuted by the Palace of Westminster, so they could see they had failed as they were dying
ALMIGHTY God and heavenly Father, who of thy gracious providence, and tender mercy towards us, didst prevent the malice and imaginations of our enemies, by discovering and confounding their horrible and wicked enterprize, plotted, and intended this day to have been executed against the King, and whole State of this Realm, for the subversion of the Government, and Religion established among us; We most humbly praise and magnify thy glorious Name for this thine infinite gracious goodness towards us, expressed in both these acts of thy mercy. We confess, it was thy mercy, thy mercy alone, that we were not then consumed. For our sins cried to heaven against us; and our iniquities justly called for vengeance upon us. But thou hast not dealt with us after our sins, nor rewarded us after our iniquities; nor given us over, as we deserved, to be a prey to our enemies; but didst in mercy delivered us from their malice, and preserved us from death and destruction. Let the consideration of this thy goodness, O Lord, work in us true repentance, that iniquity may not be our ruine. And increase in us more and more a lively faith, and fruitful love in all holy obedience, that thou maist continue thy favour, with the light of thy Gospel to us and our posterity for evermore; and that for thy dear Sons sake, Jesus Christ our only Mediator and Advocate. Amen.