Anonymous at Scientology, Los Angeles (2008) — Vincent Diamante
This iconic disguise has been adopted by members of the Anonymous group of hacktivists, but they were not the inventors of the mask, which had been a key visual element in the 2005 movie V for Vendetta by James McTeigue.
The eight conspirators who were captured alive were subjected to some very nasty treatment, to say the least. It started with sessions of torture in the Tower of London. Then they were rapidly tried and condemned. The following drawing shows the so-called hurdles of wattle branches on which the condemned men were finally strapped and drawn by horses to the gallows at Westminster.
Digby (issued from a long line of distinguished males, most of whom were named Everard) came from the village of Tilton, just a few kilometers to the north of our ancestral village of Skeffington. Here's a recent photo of the parish church of Tilton-on-the-Hill (as it is now known) and the old school-house (made from the same stone):
Getting back to the famous mask, I have the impression that no authentic images of Guy Fawkes have survived. On the other hand, we do have an authentic portrait of at least one of the condemned conspirators: Everard Digby.
It's quite possible that this Digby portrait was the only visual document that could be accessed by the anonymous Dutch artist who created the group drawing of the conspirators. I have the impression that Digby's facial features and his vaguely cynical expression are not unlike those of Guy Fawkes in the group drawing. If it were the case that the Digby portrait inspired the Dutch artist, then that would mean that all those modern V for Vendetta masks might be thought of as joyful mementos of a curious Catholic from the tiny Leicestshire village of Tilton who was knighted by King James I on 24 April 1603, and then tried to blow up that same monarch just two and a half years later.
What would Sir William Skeffington "the Gunner" have thought of the behavior of this Digby descendant? We shall never know, of course, because these two Leicestershire knights were separated in time by a century. But I have my own idea on that question.
Remember, remember the 5th of November:
Gunpowder, treason and plot.
I see no reason that gunpowder treason
Should ever be forgot.