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Journal recording the discovery of the Gunpowder Plot

On the evening of 4 November 1605 a royal official, Sir Thomas Knyvett, found Guy Fawkes who was using the alias John Johnson and numerous barrels of gunpowder in a basement under the chamber of the House of Lords. The plan was to blow up the House of Lords during  the State Opening of Parliament, an act which would have killed King James I and many members of both houses. The following day the Journal records the events of the night before. The Clerk at the time of the plot was Ralph Ewens and he made an entry in the margin of the Journal which read :

'This last night the Upper House of Parliament was searched by Sir Tho. Knevett; and one Johnson, servant to Mr Thomas Percye, was there apprehended; who had placed 36 barrels of gunpowder in the vault under the House, with a purpose to blow King and the whole Company, when they should there assemble. Afterwards divers other gentlemen were discovered to be of the Plot.'


Manuscript Journal of the House of Commons


5 Nov 1605 - 26 May 1606

Catalogue number

Parliamentary Archives HC/CL/JO/1/5