Default

Default

This article displays in one automatically-generated column. View the full page to see article in its original form.

USE OF THE GUILLOTINE IN FRANCE.

A woman named Sophie Gauthier, whose married name was Boyou, and ; who had been condemned to death for killing seven of her children by sticking pins and needles into their heads, \ was/ guillotined recently at Bourg, in the presence of four thousand persons. The enormity of the crimes committed by this horrible beldame was so palpable that for once a French jury returned a verdict nf guilty without "extenuating circumstances," and the Minister of- Justice — althongh, it ie said, with some reluctance, owing to Bex..\qt'. the culprit— urged upon the Chief of the State the imperative,necessity. ;,qf allowing the law to take, its : course. The wretched creature remained very calm to the last. She had rather expected a commutation of her geriteoce, and 1 never seemed folly to comprehend the horrible nature of her crimes. On her way to the scaffold the demonstrations of the crowd were very hostile, many women shaking their, fi»ts at the criminal and exclaiming, V You wretch, you are about to 'die, and you will be well received in the next world; all your children are Trailing for you. Sophie Gauthier w,ent through her ordeal almost without any support, and appeared quite resigned to tbe fate she so well deserved. The death of this revolting criminal recalls a few interesting facts connected with the execution of women in France. Since 1840 nine women haverbeen executed,and they all met their death i with great firmnesß. Ten years ago a man and woman were executed at Chartrea for having murdered their parents. In those days the guillotine was not the horribly neat and compact little instrument that it is now; there Were . steps to ascend before coming in contact with the. executioner. When the criminal couple reached the foot of the scaffold the woman Baid, " I should |jke j> to, embrace my husband before dying. Pray untie my hands; you can tie them again immediately afterwards." This ' supreme wish was reluctantly granted,; for it was contrary to the regulations. Her hands were no sooner free than she gathered up all her strength; and gave her husband a ringing, .box on the ear. According to 'custom, .she was the first to suffer the extreme penalty of the law. Before the man had recovered from the stunning blow she had dealt him her bead had fallen into the sawdust. Anotter woman who created great sensation at the time, was Virginia Dezoo, who had murdered- her husband and two children. She was only twenty-five years of; age, , wonderfully beautiful, and belonged to one of the beet families of France. She had not the slightest fear of death, and the moment the sentence was passed she sent a letter to the Emperor begging there might be no delay in carrying it out. Prison life and*: the loss of her loDg black hair, produced a much more disagreeable impression upon this delicate woman than the sight of the hideous choppirigblock and knife. Maoy summary executions of women took place when the regular troops entered Paris during the insurrection. A gentleman said that he remembered seeing one of the advanced Republican ladies placed against a wall behind the Great Northern Railway Station. She had just been taken with a recently-fired rifle in her hand, and standing by the Bide of a dying sentry. "Did you shoot this man?" enquired the officer, pointing to the writhing, body of the sentry. *l I did," was the reply, " and lam only sorry that £ did not see you before, as you were better worth the trouble." Two minutes afterwards she was lyiug on her face with twelve bullets ih her body. Death had been instantaneous. Her victim, the soldier, lived two hours after her, and expired in horrible pain.

This article text was automatically generated and may include errors. View the full page to see article in its original form.
Permanent link to this item
Bibliographic details
Word Count
628

USE OF THE GUILLOTINE IN FRANCE. Nelson Evening Mail, Volume XI, Issue 113, 4 May 1876

  1. New formats

    Papers Past now contains more than just newspapers. Use these links to navigate to other kinds of materials.

  2. Hierarchy

    These links will always show you how deep you are in the collection. Click them to get a broader view of the items you're currently viewing.

  3. Search

    Enter names, places, or other keywords that you're curious about here. We'll look for them in the fulltext of millions of articles.

  4. Search

    Browsed to an interesting page? Click here to search within the item you're currently viewing, or start a new search.

  5. Search facets

    Use these buttons to limit your searches to particular dates, titles, and more.

  6. View selection

    Switch between images of the original document and text transcriptions and outlines you can cut and paste.

  7. Tools

    Print, save, zoom in and more.

  8. Explore

    If you'd rather just browse through documents, click here to find titles and issues from particular dates and geographic regions.

  9. Need more help?

    The "Help" link will show you different tips for each page on the site, so click here often as you explore the site.

Working