With Bonfire night coming up, I’ve been teaching my daughter the meaning of it all. In a nutshell: Guy Fawkes was a Catholic terrorist, who plotted to blow up Houses of Parliament and King James I, the Protestant King of England, on November 5th 1605.
They were caught when someone tipped off a Catholic Member of Parliament, Lord Monteagle (probably his brother in law, Francis Tresham) and the letter of warning was handed in. A search of Parliament discovered Guy Fawkes with 20 barrels of hidden gun powder.
The story became public knowledge and fell into folk law with the Guy Fawkes poem: Remember Remember, the fifth of November:
Remember, remember the Fifth of November,
the Gunpowder Treason and Plot,
I see no reason why Gunpowder Treason should ever be forgot.
Guy Fawkes, t’was his intent to blow up King and Parliament.
Three score barrels were laid below to prove old England’s overthrow;
By God’s mercy he was catch’d with a dark lantern and lighted match.
Holloa boys, holloa boys, let the bells ring.
Holloa boys, holloa boys, God save the King!
Hip hip hoorah!
However there is a second verse, one that is totally unsuitable for this Politically Correct society in which we live. To understand it, you must consider the religious battle between Protestants and the Catholics which has been going on for centuries. Anyway, here it is, I’ll let you decide:
A penny loaf to feed the Pope
A farthing o’ cheese to choke him.
A pint of beer to rinse it down.
A faggot of sticks to burn him.
Burn him in a tub of tar.
Burn him like a blazing star.
Burn his body from his head.
Then we’ll say ol’ Pope is dead.
Hip hip hoorah!
Hip hip hoorah hoorah!
Severe isn’t it? So what do you think, do you believe that the children of today should be taught such a politically incorrect poem? What’s takes the priority here: historical accuracy, or censoring religious intolerance?
Comment and let me know if you think I should teach this 2nd verse to my 7 year old daughter or not?
EDIT: It seems given the number and length of comments (thanks to all who take the time to comment by the way), many people don’t read the comments that I’ve posted below and still get all uppity at my question. So let me summarise a clarification that I made: the question is not “Should I *ever* tell my daughter the truth?” But rather: “Is a child of 7 old enough to handle the truth?” Or put another way, at what age would you teach your child the whole truth? After all, many of the films at the cinema can’t be legal seen by under 18s.