Penny for the Guy is an activity revolving around the Guy Fawkes Night or Bonfire Night. In this article, we are going to discuss the brief history of the whole concept of ‘Penny for the Guy’ and how it came to be as it is today.
Penny for the Guy – Summarized
Penny for the Guy is a bonfire night activity where children make a stuffed ‘Guy’ and take him around the streets to ask people ‘Penny for the Guy’ so that they can collect funds for the fireworks and the burning of this stuffed guy in celebration of the Guy Fawkes Night.
Penny for the Guy – A Brief History
One of the biggest treason plots in the history of the United Kingdom is known as the Gunpowder Treason. It is recorded in the history that the members of the Gunpowder plot made the program to destroy the ‘House of Lords‘ through the use of heavy explosives stored inside the building.
The King was to sit on the throne on 5th November and the plan was to blow up the whole explosive right underneath the king’s throne. In this way, they will be able to get rid of the King and his dominant faith, ultimately restoring the Catholic faith to the Kingdom.
However, the man guarding the explosives, Guy Fawkes, was caught and arrested by following an anonymous letter giving hints about the designed plot.
Thus, Guy Fawkes became the main villain in this whole story and people around the Kingdom commemorates this day, 5th November, as Guy Fawkes Day (also known as Guy Fawkes Night) in gratitude to the Lord for saving them from the plot.
Penny for the Guy – Effigy
As Guy Fawkes was the main villain of the story, it became the custom to burn his effigy on every Guy Fawkes Night, also known as Bonfire Night, followed by a show of fireworks symbolizing the explosives of the gunpowder treason.
It became the part of the custom for children to make their own ‘Guy Fawkes’ by using old clothes and making a stuffed dummy and then strolling around the town streets by putting the dummy on a go-cart and asking for ‘Penny for the Guy’ to collect money so that they can burn the stuffed dummy of Guy Fawkes and throw a little firework show.
Pictures of the Penny for the Guy – Video Included
There are several recorded photos of the children going around the street asking ‘Penny for the Guy’. Some of the most interesting pictures are shared below:
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Penny For the Guy – Modern World
As interesting and fun as this Bonfire Night Tradition might sound to you, it is increasingly disappearing from the people’s mind and heart. There are fewer and fewer groups of children carrying this traditional activity on Guy Fawkes Night. You can read the accounts of two people here and here about the disappearance of this interesting custom of ‘Penny for the Guy in Modern World’.
Here is a video of the experience of a girl on “Penny for the Guy”:
Coloring Pages for the Penny for the Guy
Penny for the Guy coloring pages is a great way to involve your children in learning about this beautiful tradition of Guy Fawkes Day. In this way, they will be able to explore their creativity and learn about their history and tradition at the same time.
You can check out the few Penny for the Guy coloring pages as an example of what you can do with your children as a Bonfire Night Activity.
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Penny for the Guy – Story Pages
Do you want your children to learn the story of Penny for the Guy and the history of Gunpowder Treason by heart and add their own creativity to it? Then the perfect choice will be to use Story Pages of Guy Fawkes History and the tradition of the Penny for the Guy.
Check out some example story pages below:
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Note: All the material in the above two headings is taken from Activity Village.
How to Make a Guy? – Video Tutorial
Are you wondering how to make a ‘Guy’ or ‘Guy Fawkes’ for your own penny for the guy activity? Watch this short tutorial on YouTube on how you can make your own Penny for the Guy activity effigy below: