“Remember, remember the fifth of November” is a phrase many netizens will hear -- or read -- on the Internet Thursday in celebration of Guy Fawkes Day. Though the poem is arguably best known in America for the Natalie Portman film “V for Vendetta,” it’s been around for centuries.
The poem, which has various versions, was written after the Catholic Guy Fawkes attempted to blow up the Protestant-controlled House of Parliament in London Nov. 5, 1605. His plan was foiled, and some celebrate his failure by burning pictures of the Pope or Guy Fawkes.
For those who may not know the English folk verse “Fifth of November” except for its first two lines, the full poem appears below, courtesy of PotW.org. Check it out:
The fifth of November,
The Gunpowder treason and plot;
I know of no reason
Why the Gunpowder treason
Should ever be forgot!
Guy Fawkes and his companions
Did the scheme contrive,
To blow the King and Parliament
All up alive.
Threescore barrels, laid below,
To prove old England's overthrow.
But, by God's providence, him they catch,
With a dark lantern, lighting a match!
A stick and a stake
For King James's sake!
If you won't give me one,
I'll take two,
The better for me,
And the worse for you.
A rope, a rope, to hang the Pope,
A penn'orth of cheese to choke him,
A pint of beer to wash it down,
And a jolly good fire to burn him.
Holloa, boys! holloa, boys! make the bells ring!
Holloa, boys! holloa boys! God save the King!
Hip, hip, hooor-r-r-ray!
Shared below is the scene from below where V, played by Hugo Weaving, recites part of the poem to Evey, played by Portman. Try to say aloud the “Fifth of November” with V:
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