Add comment January 2nd, 2008 Headsman
On this date in 1663, Illiam Dhone was shot for treason at Hango Hill on the Isle of Man.
William Christian — “Illiam Dhone” is a Gaelic sobriquet meaning “Brown William” — committed his fatal offense in 1651: as a powerful Manx pol charged with defense of the island against a prospective Roundhead invasion, he overthrew the Royalist lords and bloodlessly surrendered instead.
Although documentation seems to be fragmentary, an overreaching assertion of lordly prerogatives by James Stanley, Earl of Derby, of late made Cromwell‘s prisoner, might have prepared a powder keg ignited by the efforts of the Earl’s wife to ransom her husband by the Isle’s sacrifice.
“In all likelihood Illiam Dhone was probably executed as an act of revenge by the Stanley family,” Roger Sims of the Manx Museum says. “However, the fact remains that Illiam Dhone’s actions in surrendering the island probably saved a great many lives and a great deal of property.”
The case, however, proceeded despite a general amnesty that should have spared the “traitor”. A week after he had already delivered himself of his dying denunciation against “a prompted and threatened jury, a pretended Court of Justice, of which the greater part were by no means qualified,” his appeal finally reached London — and was granted.
On this day..
- 1823: Robert Hartley, on Penenden Heath - 2017
- 1863: William Ockold, the last hanged at Worcester - 2016
- 1477: Gerolamo Olgiati, ducal assassin - 2015
- 1997: Eight foes of Qaddafi - 2014
- 1946: Franz Strasser - 2013
- 10 executions that defined the 1990s - 2012
- 1916: Sergeant John Robins, before evacuating Gallipoli - 2012
- 1981: Cipriano, Eugenio, and Ventura García-Marín Thompson - 2011
- 1645: John Hotham the Younger - 2010
- Daily Double: John Hothams - 2010
- 1994: Mansour Kikhia? - 2009
Entry Filed under: 17th Century,Arts and Literature,Capital Punishment,Death Penalty,England,Execution,History,Isle of Man,Martyrs,Notable Jurisprudence,Pardons and Clemencies,Politicians,Popular Culture,Reprieved Too Late,Shot,Treason,Wrongful Executions
Tags: 1660s, 1663, baase illiam dhone, ballads, earl of derby, English Civil War, english commonwealth, english restoration, hango hill, illiam dhone, indemnity and oblivion act, james stanley, january 2, literature, peveril of the peak, walter scott, william christian