I was talking with my British friend Chris on Halloween. He told me that Halloween isn’t really celebrated through most of Great Britain. Guy Fawkes Day is the most important holiday at this time of year. It’s celebrated on November 5th. People make barn fires and light fireworks. Kids also pull pranks which is why it’s also called Mischief Night.
Chris told me how he grew up on a farm and everyone in his neighborhood would head to their property for the bonfire on Guy Fawkes Night. Each year they tried to build a bigger fire to outdo the one from the year before.
Chris was telling us about how the holiday is all about a grudge against something that happened over 400 years ago. Conspirators tried to blow up the Parliament Building in London way back on November 5th, 1605. Guy Fawkes was caught as one of the plotters. He was found guilty and hanged for treason. The Brits celebrate that the English parliament did not actually blow up by burning the "guy" who tried to blow it up.
Today, an effigy of Guy Fawkes is burned in the bonfire. Here you can see someone talking about his preparations for the event…
Below you can hear people chanting the Remember, Remember the Fifth of November Rhyme while burning the effigy of Guy Fawkes. You can also see them eating baked potatoes which is another part of the tradition.
Here’s one more Guy Fawkes Effigy being burnt…
Thanks to Chris for sharing his memories with us!
Feel free to let us know how you celebrate Guy Fawkes Night (what food you eat, songs you sing, chants, etc.) and if anyone celebrates Halloween in Great Britain.
Happy bonfire night!
This artilce was posted on Monday, November 1st, 2010 at 9:53 pm and is filed under Bonfires, Countries & Cultures, Customs and Traditions, England, English Nursery Rhymes, Guy Fawkes Night, Holidays Around the World, Nursery Rhymes, United Kingdom, YouTube. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.