The Guillotine

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The guillotine was used as a form of capital punishment in France from 1792 to 1977. The device is named for Dr. Joseph Ignace Guillotin, although it was not actually invented by him. Dr. Guillotin was a Frenchman who was outraged that criminals who were put to death had to suffer so much before dying, and he called for a more humane form of punishment. He figured out that a beheading delivered the least amount of torture. …

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…angled blade of the guillotine. They were made flat or round to resemble the chopping action of an axe, whereas a guillotine was made to resemble the cleaner cut of a sword. The Guillotine was used for 188 years, and had over 1 million victims. Not only did it strike fear into the hearts of many a would-be criminal, it changed the way capital punishment was viewed, eventually leading to the complete abolition of it in France.