Do you know about the first #guillotine execution? #france

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Joseph Ignace Guillotin was said to have been born on the streets of Saintes, France, when his mother sporadically went into labor after hearing the horrifying screams of a man being executed on the town’s breaking wheel. Whether or not the story is true, French historian Daniel Arasse described how “the conditions of [Guillotin’s] birth determined his later renown.”

Guillotin, a physician who lobbied against the death penalty, devoted his career to making a device that would allow for a more humane method of execution. Guillotin’s advocacy in 1791 led the Assembly to declare that his contraption be the sole means of execution.