Guy Fawkes: The Man, The Myth, The Mask

By | January 23, 2020

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A man with a Guy Fawkes mask during a protest. (Photo by Giorgos Georgiou/NurPhoto via Getty Images)

In recent years, we've come to know Guy Fawkes more for his dashing, mustached mask—a symbol for anti-government protesters, like those in the Occupy Movement—but did you know that Guy Fawkes was a real political protester? Fawkes took his protests a giant step too far when he attempted to explode kegs of gunpowder underneath the British Parliament building in 1605. While his actions were criminal in nature, many people supported his cause. Let's look at Guy Fawkes: the man, the myth, and the mask. 

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Guy Fawkes's main goal was to oust the Protestants from power. (

His Real Name Was Guido

Guido "Guy" Fawkes was born in York in 1570. At the time, his family was Protestant, but when Guy's father died, his mother got remarried to a devout Catholic. The whole family converted to Catholicism, including Guy, who attended St. Peter's School. He ended up getting really into the whole Catholic thing, to the point that he sought to oust the Protestant government of England.