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Saturday, September 26, 2009

Poor George!!!


On our Williamsburg trip in June of 2007, George found himself in a bit of a predicament. There was an old Guillotine ----and somehow George ended up in a precarious position... Poor Baby--- I think 'she' had him exactly where she wanted him. Ya think????? Is he going to cry???? Poor George--he's just SO abused!!!! Wonder how long 'she' made him stay there---and what promises did he have to make to her???????? Hmmmmmmmmm....


Seeing this old picture made me think about the Guillotine--and its history. How much do you know about them??? I'll admit that I didn't know much---so I did a little research that you might find interesting --or maybe not!!!


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During the 1700's, executions in France were public events where entire towns gathered to watch. (Can you imagine?) A common execution method for a poor criminal was quartering, where the prisoner's limbs were tied to four oxen, then the animals were driven in four different directions ripping the person apart. (Yipes!) Upper-class criminals could buy their way into a less painful death by hanging or beheading. (It's hard to imagine something like beheading being more humane... Gads!)


Doctor Joseph Ignace Guillotin belonged to a small political reform movement that wanted to banish the death penalty completely. Guillotin argued for a painless and private capital punishment method equal for all the classes, as an interim step towards completely banning the death penalty. Beheading devices had already been used in Germany, Italy, Scotland and Persia for aristocratic criminals. However, never had such a device been adopted on a large institutional scale. The French named the guillotin after Doctor Guillotin. The extra 'e' at the end of the word was added by an unknown English poet who found guillotine easier to rhythm with.


More than 10,000 people lost their heads by guillotine during the French Revolution, including Louis XVI and Mary Antoinette, the former king and queen of France. Use of the guillotine continued in France in the 19th and 20th centuries, and the last execution by guillotine occurred in 1977. In September 1981, France outlawed capital punishment altogether, thus abandoning the guillotine forever. There is a museum dedicated to the guillotine in Liden, Sweden.


Here's some Guillotine Facts:
• Total weight of a guillotine is about 1278 lbs
• The guillotine metal blade weighs about 88.2 lbs
• The height of guillotine posts average about 14 feet
• The falling blade has a rate of speed of about 21 feet/second
• Just the actual beheading takes 2/100 of a second
• The time for the guillotine blade to fall down to where it stops takes 70th of a second
• On September 10, 1977, the last execution by guillotine took place in Marseilles, France, when the murderer Hamida Djandoubi was beheaded.
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Now--aren't you just THRILLED that I gave you all of this interesting (???) information... Thank God that doesn't go on NOW.


Okay---back to my story!!!!! She didn't want her Sweetheart's head chopped off ----so she told him to SMILE for the camera and she'd talk nicely to the guards so that they would free him... For some reason, he obliged ---and gave her a huge smile... Isn't he a Cutie?????



Have a great Saturday ---and stay away from Guillotines.


Hugs,

P.S. LATER: George just 'stole my thunder' from this post today. He said that this was NOT a guillotine ---but was really a STOCK. I said, "Whatever!" He said that they didn't use a 'thing' like this to cut off someone's head. This was used to put people in it --so everyone could make fun of them, throw rotten vegetables at them, etc. Guess that wouldn't be quite as bad as getting your head cut off!!! Oh Well----I now know more about a Guillotine and a Stock... See what blogging does?????? ha

48 comments:

Kcalpesh said...

Poor George!!! That's a perfect title! Amazed to see George smiling with a Grin!! :-D

- Pixellicious Photos

diane said...

Did he keep his promises. They were blood thirsty times.

Your EG Tour Guide said...

George is a good sport, Betsy! I don't think I could get my husband to do this (even though he's a great guy).

Jayne said...

I would think it certainly would be more "humane" than being ripped apart, but still it's a horrible way to go!!

Tes said...

Oh wow, good information! The last one was 77! Yikes, talk about becoming more civilized! Thank you for sharing!

George is such a sweety to play along.

SmilingSally said...

I enjoyed learning all about the guillotines. Thanks.

Beth said...

Hee, hee, Betsy...now we know why George is so nice to you! :-) (Just kidding)

Seriously, that was so interesting about the origins of the guillotine. I'd never thought of it as a humane way of execution, but it certainly is compared to the quartering. Yikes.

Thanks, Betsy, for the...umm...heads up. Great post!

Becky said...

That's how you get him to all the pretty yard work and plant all those roses ;-),
Can I borrow it???


Have a Great Day!
(your blog makes me smile :-))

Wendy said...

You made me laugh!! Poor George, for sure!!! I do love the one of him smiling. He does look like a sweetie-pie!
Have a fun day - and tell dear George to stay out of trouble. LOL!

Arkansas Patti said...

Now that is the way to whip a guy into shape. What a good sport George is.

Found the guillotine info very interesting. Actually when you think of how quick it was, it beats our methods today.I would have paid for the upgrade.

Guess our watching violence on TV comes from ancient genes.

Really enjoyed the post.

Sunny said...

I was surprised that they still used the guillotine in 1977. I always thought of it as being used in the 17 and 18 hundreds.
Very fun pictures of George, glad he was freed!
Have a great weekend.
Sunny :)

Carol @ TheWritersPorch said...

POOR GEORGE is loving life! YES HE IS!! XOXO

Darla said...

High definition of 'cute!'

Snap said...

George is not only a good sport, but he is wise in many ways! ;D

NCmountainwoman said...

We went to Williamsburg for our honeymoon 38 years ago and have been back several times since. We also have the photos of each other in the stocks. When we later took our children to Williamsburg the first thing they wanted to see were the stocks where Mommy and Daddy were stuck!

Mary said...

I have enjoyed visiting your blog (I "know" you via your comments on Bill S.'s and others). You have a wonderful spirit--and that header photo is gorgeous!

Karin said...

You do blog about interesting stuff - good reading! Didn't George return the favor and take your pic in the stock? I'd like to know whether this sort of punishment in the stock was effective. Wow, no self-esteem left after spending some time in there for public humiliation!! It was probably effective as a deterrent for those who watched. Guillotine - gruesome!!!

Cher said...

blogging does wonders and you are one of my blogging wonders! happy weekend to you and George! i bet he's one superb partner in life and photograph session 'crimes' (having posted at the stock willingly and happily) ;)

Jo said...

Oh Betsy;) George is a good sport. I love the photo of him smiling. What a sweetie! Very interesting facts about the guilotines. Wow, what speed with which the blade falls. No room for reflection there, (ha-ha!) thanks for a cheery post on quite a macabre subject! (((Hugs))) Jo

Jo said...

Oh Betsy;) George is a good sport. I love the photo of him smiling. What a sweetie! Very interesting facts about the guilotines. Wow, what speed with which the blade falls. No room for reflection there, (ha-ha!) thanks for a cheery post on quite a macabre subject! (((Hugs))) Jo

Deborah Godin said...

Fun post! George is a good sport!

Small City Scenes said...

George IS a good sport and he is smiling after all the torment his 'sweetheart' put him through. and he is right (oh always) it is a stock. MB

Cicero Sings said...

So you had George in the stocks! For what crime I wonder? Not enough waterfall walks?

The guillotine info was interesting ... I'd far rather go that way than be quartered! Quicker!

The Tile Lady said...

Isn't blogging wonderful! You can learn so much from each other (guillotine info was so interesting even if these WERE stocks!) and see something that makes you smile or even laugh, something that makes you sad or cry or want to send prayers aloft for someone we don't even know--we can see photographs that take our breath away or that just make us say "How cute!" I love blogging!!!!

Ruth's Photo Blog said...

Who knew blogging would become educational?Sure hope George got out in good shape.I bet you didn't have to twist his arm too much to make a few promises.Ha!Ha!
Blessings,Ruth

Cheryl said...

I so enjoyed your photos! What a history lesson I learned today. Gosh I am glad I live TODAY!

Diane said...

At the risk of sounding awful, I think we should all have something around to remind them to behave or they'll end up like George.

Diane said...

At the risk of sounding awful, I think we should all have something around to remind them to behave or they'll end up like George.

Betty said...

I hope George was released in time for spring planting your yard would not be the same without him.
Great blog.Very educational.
~~ Hugs ~~

This Is My Blog - fishing guy said...

Betsy: I was going to say that it was a stock. I guess the guys know the torture devise.

Thoughtfully blended hearts said...

Great post even if George did steal your thunder...I would have never noted the difference!!!

Chris said...

I've just popped over from George's blog and find the poor chap locked in the stocks. What crime did he commit? It can't be bad blogging 'cos the're always good. Anyway I'm pleased I came for a visit I really enjoyed your blog and history lesson.

Adrienne in Ohio said...

Oh, Betsy. I am literally laughing out loud at your P.s. Yes, the stocks weren't quite as bad as the guillotine, thank Heaven!

Have a lovely weekend!

Mary said...

Glad you didn't let anyone chop his head off :-) It was a funny post and informative even if you did confuse the stocks with a guillotine. I wouldn't want to be in either one!

Neal said...

During the French Revolution, three professionals were arrested and convicted of having bourgeois values. They were a doctor, a lawyer, and an engineer. They were to be led to the guillotine one by one. The crowd was roaring with anticipated pleasure. First up was the doctor. How dare he enrich himself through other people's illnesses? Access to basic health care is a right, right? The doctor was placed in the guillotine, and the lanyard was yanked. The blade started on its massive, implacable way down. And lurched to a stop. The official in charge declared that it would be inhumane to make the doctor suffer this way more than once, so he was setting the doctor free. The crowd howled. The executioner checked his equipment. All was in order. He put a small tree branch in, and successfully lopped it in half. He re-sharpened the blade. Next up was the lawyer. Who needs an excuse to wish such a lying, cheating scoundrel dead? The crowd was thunderous in its applause. The lawyer was placed in the guillotine, and the lanyard was yanked. Again, the blade stopped part-way down! The presiding official once again said that he would set this prisoner free because of the unusual circumstances. The crowd screamed in frustration. Now came the engineer, a man whose innovations and devices were costing jobs. The crowd fell silent. The executioner checked and re-checked his equipment. As the engineer was marched up to the guillotine, he looked carefully at it, and said, "Wait. I see your problem...."

Busy Bee Suz said...

Wow. this is some sort of information that I thought I did not need. Well, I suppose I really did not need it, but I will store it in my brain for a challenging game of trivia later. :)
Poor George. I am sure he was rewarded for his good behavior. :)

Rose said...

I have always wondered about people who would want to go to a hanging or execution of any kind. I really do. I just cannot imagine seeing someone's head chopped off, nor to see someone hang. I think I would get physically sick. And I wonder what it says about people that do...or for that matter what it says about me that I would never choose to see one.

Kirigalpoththa said...

what did he do to get that? :)

Lola said...

Poor George. I didn't think you would leave him there long. You 2 have the best time.

marmee said...

oh how funny! you guys are a riot. she said guillotine....he said stock. she said cut off his head....he said throw vegetables.
she said i don't care...he said you need to get it right.
lol.

♥Kathy♥ said...

LOL Betsy what a great post.

Sunny said...

I'm giggling so hard!! LOL!!!

Cookie said...

George is very brave to go in there! I wouldn't do it. Funny pic!

SquirrelQueen said...

That is a really big smile, I guess George isn't worried about rotten vegetables. You too just have so much fun.

Great information about the guillotines, I also had no idea the guillotine was in use until 1977.

Judy

Connie said...

The last beheading was in 1977!!!!!

Jen said...

I guess George threw some egg in your face on this one.
ha ha.
good post Betsy!

Janie said...

I hope poor George didn't have to stay in the stocks long.
I enjoyed the info on Dr. Guillotin, Betsy. Imagine, someone who wanted to end the death penalty ended up with the guillotine legacy and so many deaths bearing his name (plus an e.)

Daisy said...

HA HA HA! Poor George. :D