Sunday, November 7, 2010

Tyburn

" Your Grace talks mysteries—Buckingham blushes—and the rogue himself is dumb."


" That honest gentleman, please your Majesty," replied the Duke of Ormoud, " whose modesty makes him mute, though it cannot make him blush, is the notorious Colonel Blood, as he calls himself, whose attempt to possess himself of your Majesty's royal crown, took place at no very distant date, in this very Tower of London."
" That exploit is not easily forgotten," said the King; " but that the fellow lives, shows your Grace's clemency as well as mine."
" I cannot deny that I was in his hands, sire," said Ormond, " and had certainly been murdered by him, had he chosen to take my life on the spot, instead of destining me—I thank him for the honour—to be hanged at Tyburn.
 
The last to have the honor of being hanged at Tyburn was one John Austen, hanged on November 7, 1783 (per The Book of Days); for robbery with violence.  Tyburn suffered its own sort of death, when executions were transferred from Tyburn to Newgate.  Thus ended nearly eight centuries of continuous functio.  The first execution was William Fitz Osbern, in 1196.  Text above is from "Perveril of the Peak".

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