Add comment May 5th, 2011 Headsman
The sentence of death was often pronounced by courts-martial and not unfrequently carried out, a deserter convicted for the third time rarely escaping with his life. Many a man was shot in Hyde Park during the twenty years of peace, and no opportunity was lost to enhance the terror of the penalty, the firing party sometimes consisting solely of fellow-deserters, who were spared in consideration of the warning given by the ghastly body which their own bullets had pierced
Fortescue’s notes on this passage draw attention to the following account in the May 7, 1720 Weekly Journal.
On Thursday Morning the four Men, sentenced by a Court-Martial for Desertion, were brought hand-cuff’d to the Tilt-Yard Guard, from whence they marched with the Grenadiers at the Head of the Detachment to Hyde-Park; at the Place of Execution they were met by the Chaplain of the second Regiment of Guards, who prayed with them for a while; then three of the Prisoners, having before received the King’s Pardon, were restored to the Regiment, and ordered immediately to load their Pieces, and fire at their Comrade, which they obey’d; the Man was observed to give a little Spring after the Discharge of their Pieces, and a Corporal, who was kept, as usual, in Reserve, shot him through the Head; the other three Shot were lodged in his Breast. This is the third Time of his deserting.
On this day..
- 1854: John Hendrickson, junk science victim - 2016
- 1432: Francesco Bussone da Carmagnola, scheming condottiero - 2015
- 1624: Antonio Homem, at the hands of the Portuguese Inquisition - 2014
- 1937: Camillo Berneri, anarchist intellectual - 2013
- 1760: Laurence Shirley, 4th Earl Ferrers - 2012
- 2003: Guillermo Gaviria Correa and nine other FARC hostages - 2010
- 1708: Jack Ovet, who left no hempen widow - 2009
- 1725: Leendert Hasenbosch cast away - 2008
Entry Filed under: 18th Century,Capital Punishment,Death Penalty,Desertion,England,Execution,History,Known But To God,Last Minute Reprieve,Military Crimes,Not Executed,Pardons and Clemencies,Public Executions,Shot,Soldiers