Two whole days Guy Fawkes was tortured continually for two days while imprisoned in the Tower of London. The authorities wanted to know if he knew anything about a planned invasion by England's enemies.
On the third day, November 4, 1605, after being repeatedly asked if he would confess to any crimes, he was taken out for an hour's exercise in the courtyard of the prison. When he returned, he was found dead on the floor of his cell.
He had committed suicide by biting down on a piece of burning wire.
There has been some speculation that he may have been murdered by British officials who did not want him to reveal any information before they questioned him more closely. However, there is no hard evidence for this claim.
Guy Fawkes was born into a wealthy family in 1570. He was educated at Cambridge University and was given a job as an attorney at the English court. But instead of making money, he began to make enemies due to his harsh treatment of people who came before the bar in his courts.
Everyone knows how Fawkes was apprehended, imprisoned, and tortured at the Tower of London, and how he and the majority of his fellow conspirators were executed as traitors at Westminster.
But what many people don't know is that not only was there another person involved in the plot, but also that he survived too! He was given a free pardon by King James I, and went on to have a very successful life serving in government and military positions throughout Europe.
This man was Thomas Winter, and he's considered by some historians to be the real mastermind behind everything that happened in 1605. The fact that he's not even mentioned in any of the books or films about William Shakespeare makes him such an obscure figure that even most history students haven't heard of him.
It was only when researchers started looking into records of men who had been taken prisoner by the English during the reign of King James I that they found evidence of another person involved in the conspiracy. They called this second man "John Johnson", but historians now believe that this was probably a false name used by Thomas Winter himself.
According to the records, Thomas Winter was arrested along with Fawkes and other members of the conspiracy at the Houses of Parliament on November 4th 1605.
Guy Fawkes, along with the other surviving major conspirators, was sentenced to be hanged, drawn, and quartered in London after a brief trial. The brutal public executions in London started on January 30, 1606, and on January 31, Fawkes was called to face his doom. He made a lengthy speech from the scaffold in which he admitted his guilt but asked for forgiveness from God and the King. Then he took his place on the ladder leading up to the gallows and waited for the noose to be placed around his neck. At the last moment, however, the chief justice, Sir Edward Coke, ordered that the rope be removed so that Fawkes could be spared the pain of death by hanging.
Yes, Guy Fawkes was drawn and quartered. After his body was dismembered, his quarters were put on display in London's churches to remind everyone of what happened to those who conspire against the king.
In modern times, someone else has taken on the task of preparing Fawkes for execution. Each year, the actor who plays King James I in movies and on television is given the task of drawing and quartering someone chosen at random from among those accused of crimes ranging from murder to stealing chickens.
The person being drawn and quartered always chooses the method of their own death.