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Worse Than Death

Worse Than Death image
Parent Issue
Public Domain
OCR Text

Thongh tiie dcatta penalty wna praoticuily ubolisbed in l-Jelginm ovor yü years ago, thfl pniiisbiuéut of tho.e I victed of capital oiimea is suawful that none has yet beoü able to endure it more thau three years. Auotheronrionsthing is thjt littleBlgium until recently bad two public exe'cutioners, wbile but oua was snfficient for her vaster neigbbor, France - Deibier, otherwise known as "M. de Paris." Tbe king oí the Belgiaus recently ordered the ■ ment on a pension of 183? francs of the "executor of high works" (as be is euphoniously termed), who was stationed at Liege. The executioner at Brussels still hulds bis place. The duties of public executioner in Belgiuin are singular, but not arduous. The courts still continue to sentence malofactors to death, but the guillotine bas boen replaced by a scaffold on which is posted a copy of the seuteuce. Much ceremony is observed in atïixiug tliis document. A troop of gendarmes, with their ig helmets plumed with horsehair, i;, .iiawn np about the place of execatiou, wbich they gravely guard with gabera dra-wn, while the red robed exeoutioner mouats the steps, uails up the clacree of the court and after a moment takes ït down agaiu. But the cuudemaerl man migbt more mercifully have perished by tbe ax or rope. Ho ia placed in a dnngeon so constrncted that f rom the moment he enters it he will never hear tbe sound of human voiues nor see a living being. Hia food i. passed throngh a sliding panel in tbe ioor of his cell. Not one of these prisoners has been ablo to survive this conflnement more thau three years. The authorities have striven in vaiu to prolong thuir lives by varying their iood as mm:h as possible, but those who are moderately or lightly nourished gradually waste away, while those who are generously fed go mad


Ann Arbor Argus
Old News