Photographer's Note

Remember, remember,
the fifth of November,
gunpowder, treason and plot

Back in 1605 an enterprising mercenary by the name of Guy Fawkes was employed to blow up the Houses of Parliament with gunpowder. The plot was foiled however, and he was hung for his efforts. Symbolically we have commemorated the event with fireworks ever since. More on the plot can be found here.

Fireworks themselves however date back far further than that, but exactly how far back is a matter of some debate. Gunpowder itself is said to originate from China, although the timescale varies between 900-2000 years, there's an interesting (but I suspect apocryphal) tale involving a cook surrounding that event. More on that here.

Modern fireworks are a fascinating work of science, particularly chemistry. Did you know that the red colour you see in this shot comes from the element Strontium? If you knew that, did you know that the compound that actually makes the colours is too unstable to be used directly - and actually is formed by a reaction during the explosion? Well, if you're interested there's quite a bit of information about that here!

In case you're wondering why I posted this nearly a week ahead of schedule - that's easy, we generally have fireworks events a week each side of the day itself in addition to those on the day itself, so people can get to see more than one display :)

RAW converted using CanonEVU, Cropping, Levels, and minor USM. Apologies for the JPEG artifacts, but unless I make the image size quite a bit smaller it doesn't compress very well

nbournas, thebecky, Kenny10pin, danbachmann, Didi, chrisdane, maloutim has marked this note useful

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Additional Photos by Adrian Warren (AdrianW) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 996 W: 1144 N: 354] (2274)
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