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Decapitated Heads of Assyrian Enemies

Decapitated Heads of Assyrian Enemies


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10 Horrors Of Being Invaded By The Assyrian Army

Nearly 3,000 years ago, a nation few remember today swept through the Middle-East. They laid cities to waste, tortured the survivors, and spread terror everywhere they went. This was Assyria&mdashthe first nation to make its military might its central policy and the first nation to torment its enemies with psychological warfare.

Life behind a city&rsquos walls when the Assyrian army drew close was terrifying. Assyria made sure of it. They pioneered the use of terror as a weapon&mdashand they made the lives of their enemies a living horror story.


Decapitated Heads of Assyrian Enemies - History

This 1894 illustration depicts Japanese soldiers beheading Chinese captives during the First Sino-Japanese War. Image Source: Wikimedia Commons

As enthusiastic as governments have always been about cutting off criminals’ heads, armies have been even more willing to behead captives.

Some of the earliest bas-reliefs depict all-powerful kings from Egypt and Assyria gathering up prisoners for decapitation. Heads have been taken as prizes in warfare since the invention of the sword, and few defeated armies throughout history have been spared.

In 1191, during the Crusades, Richard the Lionheart of England fought his way into control of the Muslim Saracen city of Acre, near Jerusalem. When subsequent negotiations with the Saracen leader, Saladin, hit an impasse, Richard showed he meant business by taking between 2,500 and 5,000 Muslim prisoners of war to the city’s walls and having their heads cut off in view of the enemy army. Negotiations resumed, and the Third Crusade ended with a mutually agreeable treaty.

After the Enlightenment, European societies got the idea that the gore and bloodshed of war was a grim duty, rather than a fun pastime, and the killing of captives declined. In the East, however, cutting off the heads of defeated enemies was still standard operating procedure until the 20th century.

The Japanese, who emerged from deep political isolation in the 1850s and immediately built up a modern colonial empire, put their traditional respect for the sword to the practical task of cleansing whole cities in occupied Korea during the First Sino-Japanese War in 1894-95. Beheading was later supplemented by the more efficient method of shooting, but slicing heads off of prisoners continued to the end of the Imperial period.

A British Royal Marine holding the severed heads of a young man and woman who were accused of supporting the Communist Party of Malaya in 1952. Image Source: Twitter

Western armies may have officially stopped beheading captives in the 18th century, but that enlightened attitude didn’t always make it down to the troops (see above). This type of violence is used for psychological effect by special operations forces around the world, such as the French Foreign Legion, which teaches its troops to leave decapitated enemy soldiers in the open for shock value.


The Bible is right about Assyrians brutality

Assyrians created an enormous empire. They mastered the art of war. Unfortunately for their enemies, the Assyrians mastered also torture techniques. And they bragged about it!

The Assyrians depicted the torture in great detail on the walls of the imperial palaces. They created tablets containing every single punishment the Assyrian army carried out. They cut off the limbs, gouged out the eyes, and then left those poor victims to roam around. Those poor people serve as a living reminder of the Assyrians’ cruelty.

The cruelty didn’t hurt only the enemies, the Assyrian soldiers suffered too. The soldiers were seeing and hearing the ghosts of the killed enemies. These were the symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

The Assyrians were proud of the mass executions. They loved to impale their victims on large stakes. Such sights instilled terror and fear into the rest of the population. For the Assyrian kings, it was a showcase of their power.

The stake was driven into the body under the ribs and not through the anus as it was customary in the Medieval ages. The victim’s weight caused the spikes to protrude deeper and deeper into the body. The slow death was terrifying!

2,000 years later Vlad Tepes a.k.a Count Dracula would learn from the Assyrians and impale thousands of the Ottomans.

Flaying — the victim’s skin was hung on the city wall

The relief depicting the Assyrians flaying their prisoners alive (Image: Wikimedia Commons)

The Assyrian kings were fond of flaying the rebel leaders. The flaying process would start at the buttocks, thighs, or lower legs. They would cut the skin in strips and pulled it off the living victim. The victim’s skin was hung in a visible place as a reminder for the rest of the citizens.

Grinding of bones to erase the memory of ancestors​

The relief depicting captured nobles grinding the bones of their ancestors (Image: britishmuseum.org)
The Assyrians forced the captured nobles to grind the bones of their ancestors. By doing so, they erased the evidence of their legitimacy to rule. This was part of psychological torture. It showed the absolute power the Assyrian kings had over the subjugated nations.

Beheading​

The Assyrian relief depicting soldiers with severed heads at their feet (Image: listverse.com)
Soldiers decapitated the defeated enemies and built pyramids out of their heads. The Assyrians also decorated trees with the heads of their enemies.

One of the Assyrian accounts even boasts of the necklace made of severed heads.

Amputations of limbs, blinding, castrating, and burning people alive​

The Assyrians were very creative about the brutality. They would cut off legs, arms, noses, tongues, ears, and testicles. They would gouge out the eyes of their prisoners. They would burn small children alive.

The Assyrian army was a professional army and it was well organized. So, their cruelty and brutality were systematic.

The Assyrian kings used brutality as a weapon. The psychological warfare worked. The news of extreme terror spread fast. The entire cities surrendered at the mere sight of the approaching Assyrian army.

The Assyrian kings bragged about their cruelty. They regarded it as their divine right.

Eventually, the extreme cruelty backfired. The Assyrian empire, weakened by the constant war, was attacked by many enemies. The Assyrians vanquished and nobody missed them.

Conclusion
The brutality of the Assyrians was extreme, even for the ancient standards of cruelty. The Assyrians knew the brutality was a very effective tool of psychological warfare. Their opponents thought twice before they started a war with them.

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Who were the Assyrians in the Bible?​

The Assyrians were the inhabitants of a country that became a mighty empire dominating the biblical Middle East from the ninth to the seventh century BC. They conquered an area that comprises what is now Iraq, Syria, Jordan, and Lebanon. In the seventh century BC, Assyria occupied and controlled the eastern shores of the Mediterranean Sea. The capital of Assyria was Nineveh, one of the greatest cities of ancient times. Excavations in Mesopotamia have confirmed the Bible’s description that it took three days' journey to go around this city (Jonah 3:3). The Assyrians were a fierce and cruel nation who showed little mercy to those they conquered (2 Kings 19:17).

The Assyrians were a thorn in the side of Israel. Beginning in 733 BC under King Tilgath-pileser, Assyria took the Northern Kingdom’s land and carried the inhabitants into exile (2 Kings 15:29). Later, beginning in 721 BC, the Assyrian king Shalmaneser besieged Israel’s capital, Samaria, and it fell three years later (2 Kings 18:9-12). This event fulfilled Isaiah’s prophecy that God would use Assyria as the “rod of His anger” (Isaiah 10:5-19) that is, the Assyrian Empire was implementing God’s judgment against the idolatrous Israelites. The sovereign God takes full credit as the source of Assyria’s authority (compare Isaiah 7:18 8:7 9:11 and Daniel 4:17). Secular history records that in 703 BC Assyria under King Sennacherib suppressed a major Chaldean challenge.

Given the Assyrian threat against Israel, it is understandable that the prophet Jonah did not want to travel to Nineveh (Jonah 1:1-3). When he eventually arrived in the Assyrian capital, Jonah preached God’s impending judgment. After hearing Jonah’s message, the king of Assyria and the entire city of Nineveh repented, and God turned His anger away for a time (Jonah 3:10). The grace of God was extended even to the Assyrians.

In the fourteenth year of Hezekiah’s reign, in 701 BC, the Assyrians under Sennacherib took 46 of Judah’s fortified cities (Isaiah 36:1). Then they laid siege to Jerusalem—the Assyrian king engraved upon his stele that he had the king of Judah caught like a caged bird in his own country.

However, even though Sennacherib’s army occupied Judah up to the very doorstep of Jerusalem, and even though Sennacherib’s emissary Rabshakeh boasted against God and Hezekiah (Isaiah 36:4-21), Assyria was rebuffed. Hezekiah prayed, and God promised that the Assyrians would never set foot inside the city (Isaiah 37:33). God slew 185,000 Assyrian forces in one night (Isaiah 37:36), and Sennacherib returned to Nineveh where he was slain by his own sons as he worshiped his god Nisroch (Isaiah 37:38).

In 612 BC, Nineveh was besieged by an alliance of the Medes, Babylonians, and Scythians, and the city was so completely destroyed that even its location was forgotten until British archaeologist Sir Austen Layard began uncovering it in the nineteenth century. Thus, as the Babylonian Empire ascended, Assyria dropped off the pages of history.


Contents

    (2013) – a Brazilian amateur football referee, [1] was lynched, quartered and beheaded by football spectators in Pio XII after he stabbed a player in a match he officiated on 30 June 2013. Spectators then put his head on a stake in the middle of the pitch. A viral video later surfaced of medical officials reassembling his body. [2][3][4] (2013) – Brazilian football player, murdered and beheaded by suspected drug traffickers. [5]
    (2008) – murdered and beheaded on Greyhound Canada bus in Portage la Prairie, Manitoba
  • Fribjon Bjornson (2012) – severed head found on the Nak'azdli reserve near Fort St. James, British Columbia[6]
    (桓齮, 227 BC) — traitorous Qin general his severed head was instrumental in Jing Ke's assassination attempt of the Qin king (韓信, 196 BC) – executed by Empress Lü (關羽, 219) – executed during civil war by Sun Quan (關平, 219) – son of Guan Yu, executed during civil war by Sun Quan (文天祥, 1283) – scholar and general (夏完淳, 1647) – poet, executed by Qing official Hong Chengchou who betrayed Ming before Ming Dynasty fell. (聖劉方濟, 1648) – beheaded at Fogang, China (1857) – German botanist and explorer executed by the ruler of Kashgar (譚嗣同, 1898) – executed with five others by Empress Dowager Cixi
    (1693) – executed in Copenhagen for witchcraft (1723) – executed in Copenhagen for lèse-majesté (1752) - executed in Logstor for arson [7] (1772) – executed in Copenhagen for lèse-majesté (1772) – executed in Copenhagen for lèse-majesté
  • Kim Wall (2017) – her body was found both dismembered and decapitated in a submarine. See Murder of Kim Wall. [citation needed]
    (1076) – executed at Winchester by order of William I for taking part in the Revolt of the Earls , Prince of Wales (1283) – hanged, drawn and quartered in Shrewsbury by Edward I for treason (1305) – Scottish resistance fighter, hanged, drawn and quartered by Edward I (1312) – executed near Warwick by Thomas, 2nd Earl of Lancaster in the Baron's Revolt – Lord High Steward (1322) – executed at Pontefract Castle by Edward II of England (1326) – executed at Hereford by Queen Isabella, Regent for Edward III (1326) – hanged, drawn and quartered by order of Queen Isabella – Lord Wardens of the Cinque Ports (1330) – executed at Winchester by Queen Isabella, Regent for Edward III – Lord High Treasurer (1381) – executed at Tower Hill by rebels during the Peasants' Revolt – Lord Chancellor, Archbishop of Canterbury and Bishop of London (1381) – executed at Tower Hill by rebels during the Peasants' Revolt – London merchant and financier (1381) – beheaded in London by rebels during the Peasants' Revolt – Chief Justice of the King's Bench, Chancellor of the University of Cambridge (1381) – executed in Bury St Edmunds by rebels during the Peasants' Revolt (1381) – beheaded in London by order of the Lord Mayor of London during the Peasants' Revolt (1381) – hanged, drawn and quartered at St Albans after the Peasants Revolt , KG (1388) – executed on Tower Hill by the Merciless Parliament for supporting Richard II of England[8] (1388) – executed on Tower Hill by the Merciless Parliament for supporting Richard II of England[8]
  • Sir John Emsley (1388) – executed on Tower Hill by the Merciless Parliament for supporting Richard II of England[8] , KG (1397) – executed at Tower Hill by order of Richard II of England[8] , Sir John Bussy and Sir Henry Green (1399) – executed in Bristol Castle by the Duke of Hereford (soon to be Henry IV of England) (1400) – executed at Cirencester during reign of Henry IV for the Epiphany Rising (1400) – executed at Bristol by order of Henry IV for the Epiphany Rising , KG – Lord Great Chamberlain and Justice of Chester (1400) – executed at Pleshey Castle, Essex by order of Joan Fitzalan, Countess of Hereford, with the approval of her son-in-law Henry IV, for the Epiphany Rising , KG (1400) – executed at Cirencester during reign of Henry IV for the Epiphany Rising , KG – Earl Marshal (1400) – executed at Cirencester during reign of Henry IV for the Epiphany Rising (1400) – beheaded at Tyburn during reign of Henry IV for the Epiphany Rising (1403) – executed by order of Henry IV (Hanged, drawn and quartered)
  • Sir David Walsh (1403) – executed by order of Henry IV (Hanged, drawn and quartered)
  • Danney Parsons (1403) – executed by order of Henry IV (Hanged, drawn and quartered) – Earl Marshal (1405) – executed at York by order of Henry IV for treason [9] , Archbishop of York (1405) – executed at York by order of Henry IV for treason [10]
  • Sir William de Plumpton (1405) – executed by order of Henry IV for treason (1415) – executed at Southampton by order of Henry V of England for his involvement in the Southampton Plot , KG (1415) – executed at Southampton by order of Henry V of England for his involvement in the Southampton Plot (1450) – beheaded at sea, possibly by order of Richard Plantagenet, 3rd Duke of York (1450) – beheaded in London by rebels led by Jack Cade (1459) – executed after Battle of Blore Heath for being a Lancastrian , KG, PC – Lord Chancellor (1460) – executed after the Battle of Wakefield for being a Yorkist (1460) – executed by order of Lord Clifford for being a Yorkist (stabbed to death during the Battle of Wakefield and later decapitated) , Speaker of the House of Commons (1461) – beheaded by a London mob (1461) – executed after the Battle of Mortimer's Cross for being a Lancastrian (1461) – executed by order of Margaret of Anjou after the Second Battle of St Albans for being a Yorkist (1461) – executed by order of Margaret of Anjou after the Second Battle of St Albans for being a Yorkist (1461) – executed after the Battle of Towton for being a Lancastrian – 1st Earl of Wiltshire (1461) – executed after the Battle of Towton for being a Lancastrian
  • Lord Aubrey de Vere (1462) – son of John de Vere, 12th Earl of Oxford (1462) – beheaded for treason at Tower Hill by order of John Tiptoft, 1st Earl of Worcester[8] (1462) – beheaded for treason at Tower Hill by order of John Tiptoft, 1st Earl of Worcester (1462) – beheaded for treason at Tower Hill by order of John Tiptoft, 1st Earl of Worcester (1464) – beheaded after the Battle of Hexham for being a Lancastrian (1464) – beheaded at Newcastle after the Battle of Hexham for being a Lancastrian (1464) – beheaded at Newcastle after the Battle of Hexham for being a Lancastrian (1464) – beheaded at Middleham after the Battle of Hexham for being a Lancastrian
  • Sir William Tailboys (1464) – executed after Battle of Hexham for being a Lancastrian
  • Sir Touchus Winterton (1469) – executed at York by order of Edward IV for being a Lancastrian
  • Sir Charles Winterton (1469) – brother of above – executed at York by order of Edward IV for being a Lancastrian – Lord High Treasurer and Lord Warden of the Cinque Ports (1469) – executed by order of Richard Neville, 16th Earl of Warwick for being a Yorkist (1469) – son of above – executed by order of Richard Neville, 16th Earl of Warwick for being a Yorkist
  • Sir Richard Smith (1469) – executed for treason at Salisbury for being a Lancastrian brother of Sir Hugh Courtenay and the 14th and 15th Earls of Devon who were all executed for being Lancastrians (in 1471, 1461 and 1471 respectively) (1469) – executed after Battle of Edgecote Moor for being a Yorkist (1469) – executed after Battle of Edgecote Moor for being a Yorkist, also illegitimate son of the above (1469) – captured and executed in Bridgewater for being a Yorkist (1470) – executed on battlefield of Losecote by order of Edward IV for being a Lancastrian
  • Sir Lawrence Davis (1470) – executed on battlefield of Losecote by order of Edward IV for being a Lancastrian (1470) – son of Richard Welles executed after Battle of Losecoat by order of Edward IV for being a Lancastrian – Lord High Treasurer (1470) – executed at Tower Hill by order of Henry VI for being a Yorkist [8] (1471) – beheaded after the Battle of Tewkesbury for being a Lancastrian (1471) – beheaded after the Battle of Tewkesbury for being a Lancastrian
  • Sir Hugh Courtenay (1471) – beheaded after the Battle of Tewkesbury for being a Lancastrian (1471) – beheaded after the Battle of Tewkesbury for being a Lancastrian
  • Ben Glover (1471) – beheaded after the Battle of Tewkesbury for being a Lancastrian [11] (The eldest son of Sir John Delves, who was killed in the battle.) – MP for Buckinghamshire, Huntingdonshire and Northamptonshire, High Sheriff of Cambridgeshire and Huntingdonshire, High Sheriff of Sussex, High Sheriff of Surrey, Comptroller of the Household, Speaker of the House of Commons (1471) – beheaded after the Battle of Tewkesbury for being a Lancastrian
  • Sir John Langstrother – Grand Prior of the Hospital of St John of Jerusalem (1471) – beheaded after the Battle of Tewkesbury for being a Lancastrian (1471) – executed at Middleham Castle or Southampton by order of Edward IV for being a Lancastrian [12] (1483) – executed by order of Richard III (1483) – executed near Tower Chapel by order of Richard III[8] – Lord High Constable (1483) – beheaded at Shrewsbury by order of Richard III – Chief Butler of England (1483) – executed at Pontefract Castle by order of Richard III (1483) – executed at Pontefract Castle by order of Richard III
  • Sir Thomas St. Leger (1483) – beheaded at Exeter for rebellion against his brother-in-law Richard III
  • Sir George Browne (1483) – beheaded at Tower Hill for rebellion against Richard III (1485) – beheaded at Leicester by order of Henry VII of England after the Battle of Bosworth for being a Yorkist (1495) – executed at Tower Hill by order of Henry VII of England for supporting the pretender Perkin Warbeck [8] (1495) – executed at Tower Hill by order of Henry VII of England for supporting the pretender Perkin Warbeck (1497) – executed at Tower Hill by order of Henry VII of England for opposing taxation [8] – Heir to the English Throne from 9 April 1484 – March 1485 (1499) – executed at Tower Hill by order of Henry VII of England[8] (1502) – executed at Tower Hill by order of Henry VII of England for treason [8]
  • Sir Leon Taylor (1502) – executed at Tower Hill by order of Henry VII of England for treason [8] – Speaker of the House of Commons (1510) – executed at Tower Hill by order of Henry VIII of England for extortion [8] – Speaker of the House of Commons, Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster (1510) – executed at Tower Hill by order of Henry VIII of England for extortion [8] – High Admiral of Scotland (1511) – executed on capture as a pirate, according to ballads. (1513) – executed at Tower Hill by order of Henry VIII of England as Yorkist claimant to throne [8] , KG – Lord High Steward and Lord High Constable (1521) – executed at Tower Hill by order of Henry VIII of England as claimant to throne [8] (1531) – executed at Tower Hill by order of Henry VIII of England for conspiracy with Scotland [8] – Catholic Bishop of Rochester (1535) – executed at Tower Hill by order of Henry VIII of England for refusing to take Oath of Supremacy[8] (1535) – hanged, drawn and quartered at Tyburn for refusing to take Oath of Supremacy – knight, Lord Chancellor, Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster, Speaker of the House of Commons (1535) – executed at Tower Hill by order of Henry VIII of England for refusing to take Oath of Supremacy[8] – Queen of England and Henry's Wife (1536) – executed by sword at the Tower of London by order of Henry VIII of England for High Treason[8] (1536) – executed at Tower Hill by order of Henry VIII of England for High Treason[8] – Groom of the Stool (1536) – executed at Tower Hill by order of Henry VIII of England for High Treason[8] , KB – Groom of the Privy Chamber (1536) – executed at Tower Hill by order of Henry VIII of England for High Treason[8] – Gentleman of the Privy Chamber (1536) – executed at Tower Hill by order of Henry VIII of England for High Treason[8] (1536) – executed at Tower Hill by order of Henry VIII of England for High Treason[8] , KG (1537) – beheaded at Tower Hill by order of Henry VIII of England for being in the Pilgrimage of Grace[8] – Chief Butler of England (1537) – beheaded at Lincoln by order of Henry VIII of England for being in the Pilgrimage of Grace
  • Adam Chen (1537) – hanged, drawn and quartered by order of Henry VIII of England for being in Bigod's Rebellion
  • Sir Colin Keast (1538) – beheaded at Tower Hill by order of Henry VIII of England for being in Bigod's Rebellion[8] (1539) – executed at Tower Hill by order of Henry VIII of England for being in Exeter Conspiracy[8] , KG, PC, Lord Warden of the Stannaries (1539) – executed at Tower Hill by order of Henry VIII of England for being in Exeter Conspiracy[8] , KG, PC – Master of the Horse (1539) – executed at Tower Hill by order of Henry VIII of England for being in Exeter Conspiracy[8] (1539) – executed at Tower Hill by order of Henry VIII of England for being implicated in the Pilgrimage of Grace[8] (1539) – executed by order of Henry VIII of England for Catholicism [8] (1539) – executed on Glastonbury Tor by order of Thomas Cromwell (hung, drawn and quartered)
    , KG, PC – Secretary of State, Master of the Rolls, Lord Privy Seal, Governor of the Isle of Wight, Justice in Eyre, Lord Great Chamberlain (1540) – executed at Tower Hill by order of Henry VIII of England for treason [8] (1540) – executed at Tower Hill by order of Henry VIII of England for high treason and buggery [13] – Lord Deputy of Ireland (1541) – executed at Tower Hill by order of Henry VIII of England for High Treason after allowing the escape of his nephew Gerald FitzGerald, 11th Earl of Kildare[8] (1541) – executed at Tower Green by order of Henry VIII of England for high treason[8] (1541) – executed at Tyburn by order of Henry VIII for high treason (adultery with the queen) – Queen of England and Henry's Wife (1542) – executed at Tower Green by order of Henry VIII of England for High Treason[8] – wife of executed George Boleyn, Viscount Rochford and sister-in-law of Anne Boleyn (1542) – executed at Tower Green by order of Henry VIII of England for High Treason [8]
  • Sir John Neville of Chevet (1546) – executed by order of Henry VIII of England , KG – Earl Marshal (1547) – executed at Tower Hill during the reign of Henry VIII of England for treason [8] – Master-General of the Ordnance, Lord Warden of the Cinque Ports, Lord High Admiral, also was the husband of Henry VIII sixth wife and widow Catherine Parr and the brother of Henry's third wife Jane Seymour (1549) – beheaded for treason at Tower Hill during the reign of Edward VI of England[8] , KG, PC, Earl Marshal, Lord High Treasurer, Lord High Admiral, Lord Protector of England in the period between the death of Henry VIII in 1547 and his own indictment in 1549 (1552) – executed at Tower Hill during the reign of Edward VI of England for plotting murder of John Dudley [8] – Gentleman of the Privy Chamber (1552) – beheaded at Tower Hill during the reign of Edward VI of England for treason [8][14] – Chief Gentleman of the Privy Chamber (1552) – beheaded at Tower Hill during the reign of Edward VI of England for treason [14] , KG – Vice-Admiral, Lord Admiral, Governor of Boulogne, President of the Council in the Marches, Lord Great Chamberlain, Grand Master of the Royal Household, Earl Marshal of England, Lord President of the Council, Warden General of the Scottish Marches (1553) – executed at Tower Hill by order of Mary I for supporting Lady Jane Grey [8]KB (1553) – executed at Tower Hill by order of Mary I for supporting Lady Jane Grey [15] (1553) – executed at Tower Hill by order of Mary I for supporting Lady Jane Grey [8] – Queen of England 10–19 July 1553 and Heir to the English and Irish Thrones 21 June – 10 July 1553 (1554) – executed at Tower Green by Mary I as claimant to throne [8] – son of John Dudley, 1st Duke of Northumberland and Royal Consort of England 10–19 July 1553 (1554) – executed at Tower Hill by order of Mary I for supporting Lady Jane Grey [8] , KG – father of the above, Lord Lieutenant of Leicestershire, Justice in Eyre (1554) – executed at Tower Hill by order of Mary I for rebellion [8] (1554) – executed at Tower Hill by order of Mary I for rebellion [8] , KG – Earl Marshal (1573) – executed at Tower Hill by order of Elizabeth I of England for Ridolfi plot[8] (1572) – executed at York during the reign of Elizabeth I of England for taking part in the Rising of the North (1578) – executed by order of Sir Francis Drake (1583) – executed at Tyburn during the reign of Elizabeth I of England for high treason (hanged, drawn and quartered) (1584) – executed during the reign of Elizabeth I of England – Queen of Scots and Queen consort of France (1587) – Executed during the reign of Elizabeth I of England for treason , KG – Master of the Horse, Earl Marshal, Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, Custos Rotulorum of Pembrokeshire, Custos Rotulorum of Staffordshire, Master-General of the Ordnance (1601) – executed at Tower Hill during the reign of Elizabeth I of England for High Treason[8] (1601) – executed at Tower Hill during the reign of Elizabeth I of England for High Treason[8] (1601) – executed at Tower Hill during the reign of Elizabeth I of England for High Treason[16] – Lord Warden of the Stannaries, Lord Lieutenant of Cornwall, Vice-Admiral of Devon, Captain of the Yeomen of the Guard, Governor of Jersey (1618) – executed in the Old Palace Yard, Westminster by orders of James VI – executed at Tower Hill for aiding buggery (1631) [8] , KG – Custos Rotulorum of the West Riding of Yorkshire, Lord Lieutenant of Yorkshire, Lord Deputy of Ireland, Lord Lieutenant of Ireland (1641) – executed at Tower Hill on orders of Parliament[8] (1644) – executed at Tower Hill for treason on orders of Parliament[17]
  • Archbishop William Laud – Archbishop of Canterbury (1645) – executed at Tower Hill on orders of Parliament [8] (2 January 1645) – executed at Tower Hill on orders of Parliament for betraying the parliamentarians to the Royalists [8] , of Scarborough (died 3 January 1645) – father of above – executed for betraying the parliamentarians to the Royalists [8] and Scotland (1649) – executed in Whitehall, London by order of Cromwell's Parliament , KG – Master of the Horse, Lord Chancellor of Scotland (1649) – executed by order of Cromwell's Parliament for being a Royalist (1649) – executed by order of Cromwell's Parliament for being a Royalist , KG – Master of the Horse, Captain of the Yeomen of the Guard, Lord Lieutenant of Berkshire, Lord Lieutenant of Middlesex, Justice in Eyre (1649) – executed in London by order of Cromwell's Parliament for being a Royalist (1650) – beheaded in London by order of Cromwell's Parliament for being a Royalist (1650) – beheaded on Tower Hill for treason as a Royalist. , KG – Lord Lieutenant of Cheshire, Lancashire, Vice-Admiral of Cheshire (1651) – executed at Bolton by order of Cromwell's Parliament for being a Royalist (1654) – beheaded on Tower Hill for plotting against Oliver Cromwell (1619–1655) – executed at Exeter by order of Cromwell's Parliament for being a Royalist (1658) – beheaded on Tower Hill, London by order of Cromwell's Parliament for being a Royalist [8] (1658) – beheaded on Tower Hill, London by order of Cromwell's Parliament for being a Royalist [8] (1660) (MP) – hanged, drawn and quartered at Charing Cross by Charles II as a regicide [18] (1661) – posthumously beheaded at Tyburn by order of Charles II as a regicide. (1661) – posthumously beheaded at Tyburn by order of Charles II as a regicide. (1661) – posthumously beheaded at Tyburn by order of Charles II as a regicide. (1662) – executed at Tower Hill by order of Charles II for the death of his father Charles I [8] (1663) – hanged, drawn, quartered and beheaded (and head displayed on a Ludgate spike) for publishing an anonymous pamphlet justifying the right of rebellion against the king (1680) – executed at Tower Hill for treason[8] (1681) – hanged, drawn and quartered in London for treason – Member of Parliament for Tavistock and Tavistock (1683) – executed for being involved with the Rye House Plot (1683) – executed at Tower Hill for being involved with the Rye House Plot[8] – Member of Parliament for Stafford (1684) – executed by order of Judge Jeffreys for supporting Monmouth (1685) – executed at Tower Hill in reign of James II after the Battle of Sedgemoor for treason [8]
  • Lady Alice Lisle (1685) – executed at Winchester by Judge Jeffreys during the Bloody Assizes for harbouring Monmouth rebels (1697) – Jacobite Rebel executed at Tower Hill in reign of William III for treason [8]

Bolivia Edit

Brazil Edit

  • Joaquim José da Silva Xavier (Tiradentes) (1792) – the body was quartered after his hanging for revolutionary activity

British North America Edit

    (1586) – Roanoke Indian chief executed by first English settlers in the New World [19]
  • Wituwamat (1623) – Neponset warrior killed and beheaded by the Plymouth Colony Pilgrim/soldier Miles Standish (1676) – New EnglandWampanoag chief "King Philip" executed for resisting white settlement (1718) – famous pirate beheaded after capture at Ocracoke Island

Haiti Edit

Mexico Edit

Panama Edit

Peru Edit

Ancien Régime Edit

  • Olivier III de Clisson (1343) – executed by Philip VI of France for treason (1409) – executed in Paris by Charles VI of France (1574) – executed by Catherine de' Medici for treason (1626) – executed in Nantes for conspiracy against Cardinal Richelieu (1766) – beheaded and burnt in Abbeville for blasphemy (1792) - highwayman convicted of murder. First person to be guillotined.

French Revolution Edit

Note: some estimates place the number of persons executed by the guillotine, particularly during the Reign of Terror (1793–1794), at 40,000.


Decapitated Heads of Assyrian Enemies - History

Once the Mitanni were driven out of the region, this allowed King Adad Nirari I to make the first significant expansion of the Assyrian realm. At the turn of the 13 th century BCE, Adad Nirari I, began to exert Assyrian influence throughout Mesopotamia and this fierce ambition would be present in many powerful kings of the future.

Military Society

The foundation of Assyrian society and what separated it from other Mesopotamian groups was their military acumen. Their vast rise to power was due to a strict and extensive military relentlessly trained to conquer foreign enemies. This fierce ambition began at the top of society with a series of ruthless kings who had a lust for power and glory. From Tiglath-Pileser I to Ashurbanipal, generations of highly-skilled military tacticians were fearless in battle and led their soldiers into battle with the promise of glory for the entire kingdom.

As inspirational as the kings were in Assyrian society, the thousands of soldiers on the frontline were equally as important to the strength of the empire. Without a tenacious group of skilled fighters, the Assyrians would have never risen to claim a vast stretch of territory in the ancient world. To protect the strength of the military, Assyrians bred young men for the war machine. Not only were the Assyrians the first true empire the world had ever seen, but they were the first culture to create the professional soldier.

In the early stages of the Assyrian Empire, it was unheard of for armies to campaign throughout the entirety of the year. Those who went to battle had to harvest crops during season and the army could not fight year-round. Once Tiglath-Pileser III rose to power, he would recruit an army whose sole purpose was to fight. This transformation in war tactics was unprecedented and it changed the military landscape in the Near East.

Men in the Assyrian military had one duty and that was to fight to the death. Assyrian soldiers fought ruthlessly for their king and showed no mercy in battle. As the empire grew in size, more and more young men were forced into the military from a young age. This standing army would sometimes be equipped with well over 100,000 fighters. This gigantic, well-oiled war machine was an intimidating presence for foes of the Assyrians. Provinces throughout the territory had to provide fighters to go to battle at any point in time. Enhancing the might of the army was no laughing matter and it was the focal point of Assyrian society.

On the battlefield, the Assyrians were extremely brutal to the groups of people they conquered. Deportation was a common practice for the ones whose lives were spared by the Assyrian kings. Enemies of the Assyrian Empire who fought till the end, as opposed to submitting, were brutally slaughtered. It was not uncommon to see heads decapitated, bodies mutilated, and entire cities burned to the ground. This was all done on the basis of fear. Assyrian kings ruled on fear and this is what they fed upon to assert their dominance in Mesopotamia and elsewhere. Those who were conquered by the Assyrian army were often enslaved or brutalized. Although they were deeply hated by the majority of other neighboring groups, they were certainly feared for the destructive potential of the army.

To no surprise, the Assyrians dominated the resources throughout the region and became an extremely wealthy group. Kings in particular basked in their newfound riches through conquering and seizing prizes formerly belonging to their enemies. Many kings used the acquired wealth to build lavish palaces to honor themselves and others could marvel at their accomplishments. Along the walls of these tremendous palaces were the greatest and most noteworthy military accomplishments of the king.

In a society dominated by military success, this only scratched the surface of how much the Assyrians marveled at the feats of their greatest kings. Much of their artwork and decorations for public display featured kings defeating enemies in battle, as well as Assyrian warriors violently killing their enemies through intricate methods. Several of the most notable Assyrian kings were also active hunters for wild game (such as lions) and some public artwork would be dedicated to the slaying of giant beasts from the wild.

The effectiveness and sheer destruction of the Assyrian military could not have been accomplished without being meticulously organized. This dedication to the strength and size of their standing army enabled them to become the world’s first super power. Due to the violence and bloodshed the Assyrian Empire resorted to in conquering of neighboring groups of people, they gained many comparisons to other cruel empires such as the Romans, Mongols, and Nazi Germany. The motivations of the Assyrians to build a powerful army may have differed than other powerful empires throughout history, but there was no restraint in their brutality.

One of the factors that contributed to their desire for possessing the most powerful military in the world was the economic riches at stake in the region. Their ancient rivals, the Babylonians, were based in the southern lands of Mesopotamia and there was always a threat from tribes to the north. A lack of military strength would leave the Assyrians vulnerable to an attack and in danger of losing their way of life.

Early in the 2 nd millennium BCE, the Assyrians became strong enough to repel invaders from their original capital city of Ashur, but it would take hundreds of years before they possessed the military fortitude to expand their territory. The lust for further economic prosperity can be tied to their commitment to military strength. This lay the foundation for the empire as it began to have a bigger influence on the economic affairs of Mesopotamia and neighboring regions where trade was common.

It would not be until the reign of Tiglath-Pileser I where military expansion of the empire would truly take form and Assyria would become one of the primary aggressors in the region. The increased commitment to military strength in Assyrian society made them the most powerful entity in the ancient world at the cusp of the Neo-Assyrian Age. This would correlate to the greatest amount of economic fortunes the empire had ever seen.

As the Assyrian Empire continued to expand and claim more territory, they possessed firm control of lucrative trading routes that provided them access to many valuables from other empires. The economy of the Assyrian Empire prospered and extravagant riches came pouring in to the hands of its kings and royals. Through invading, conquering, and trading, the Assyrian realm became a home to one of the biggest collections of valuable resources in the world.

At the forefront of Assyrian power was its powerful king. Throughout its history, the Assyrian Empire had a long line of ambitious, ruthless, and intellectual kings. This played a significant role in the expansion of the empire over the centuries. There were periods in Assyrian history where a weak and indecisive ruler was in charge. Even though the empire appeared to falter to foreign and domestic pressures, it bounced back stronger than ever when a king with a clear vision ascended to the throne.


Mutilation/Fear

The judges of ancient Babylon were particularly enthusiastic about instilling fear in wrong doers, prisoners of war, or anyone that needed to be punished for any type of crime. Anyone from slaves to prisoners of war could be subject to fear inducing acts of punishment. The cutting off of feet, lips and noses, blinding, gutting and the ripping out of the heart were all standard punishments in this corner of the ancient world (Hamblin). The practices represented in depictions include the cutting of the throats of enemies and the decapitation of dead bodies. The use of torture and mutilation as a fear tactic did not become a more common practice until the Assyrian Empire was built. The Assyrians were known for being very barbaric when it came to torturing slaves and prisoners of war.

The fragment above is part of the Stele of Vultures. It shows the decapitated heads of the enemy Ummite soldiers being carried away by vultures. These kind of artifacts are very common. The purpose of the stele is to display the power and ferocity of the Lagashistes. Any outsider who would gaze upon the monument would know not to mess with Lagash. These horrific and brutal images would surly make any enemy fear the wrath of Lagash.

Stele of the Vultures picture:

Lewandowski, Hervé. Victory Stele of Eannatum, King of Lagash, Called the “Vulture Stele”early dynastic period, c. 2450 bc. Louvre, Tello (ancient Girsu).


"Therefore the LORD was very angry with Israel, and removed them from His sight there was none left but the tribe of Judah alone. . And the LORD rejected all the descendants of Israel, afflicted them, and delivered them into the hand of plunderers, until He had cast them from His sight." (The Book of 2 Kings) Isa 10:5-7 "Woe to Assyria, the rod of My anger And the staff in whose hand is My indignation. I will send him against an ungodly nation, And against the people of My wrath I will give him charge, To seize the spoil, to take the prey, And to tread them down like the mire of the streets. Yet he does not mean so, Nor does his heart think so But it is in his heart to destroy, And cut off not a few nations." The Northern Kingdom consisted of 10 of the tribes (excluding Judah and Benjamin). It lasted for about 210 years until it was destroyed by Assyria in 722 BC. Its capital was Samaria. Every king of Israel was evil. In the northern kingdom there were 9 dynasties (family lines of kings) and 19 kings in all. An average of 11 years to a reign. 8 of these kings met death by violence. The epitaph written over every one of its kings was: I King 15:34 "and he did evil in the sight of the LORD, and walked in the way of Jeroboam, and in his sin by which he had made Israel to sin." It was king Ahab who introduced Baal worship to them. I King 16:30-33 "Now Ahab the son of Omri did evil in the sight of the LORD, more than all who were before him. And it came to pass, as though it had been a trivial thing for him to walk in the sins of Jeroboam the son of Nebat, that he took as wife Jezebel the daughter of Ethbaal, king of the Sidonians and he went and served Baal and worshiped him. Then he set up an altar for Baal in the temple of Baal, which he had built in Samaria. And Ahab made a wooden image. Ahab did more to provoke the LORD God of Israel to anger than all the kings of Israel who were before him." The last king was Hoshea (2 Ki 17). The petty wars of the past, wars with Syria and Edom, Ammon and Philistia, were now to give way to war on an ominous new scale. A world empire was being gathered into the ruthless hands of the Assyrians. The ruthless and cruel Assyrians (under Sargon II) besieged Samaria for 3 years and finally it fell, Israel was doomed. The Assyrians hauled them away into captivity (722 BC). But the Lord always reminded them of why judgment came: II Ki 17:7-23 "For so it was that the children of Israel had sinned against the LORD their God, who had brought them up out of the land of Egypt, from under the hand of Pharaoh king of Egypt and they had feared other gods, and had walked in the statutes of the nations whom the LORD had cast out from before the children of Israel, and of the kings of Israel, which they had made. Also the children of Israel secretly did against the LORD their God things that were not right, and they built for themselves high places in all their cities, from watchtower to fortified city. They set up for themselves sacred pillars and wooden images on every high hill and under every green tree. There they burned incense on all the high places, like the nations whom the LORD had carried away before them and they did wicked things to provoke the LORD to anger, for they served idols, of which the LORD had said to them, "You shall not do this thing." Yet the LORD testified against Israel and against Judah, by all of His prophets, every seer, saying, "Turn from your evil ways, and keep My commandments and My statutes, according to all the law which I commanded your fathers, and which I sent to you by My servants the prophets." Nevertheless they would not hear, but stiffened their necks, like the necks of their fathers, who did not believe in the LORD their God. And they rejected His statutes and His covenant that He had made with their fathers, and His testimonies which He had testified against them they followed idols, became idolaters, and went after the nations who were all around them, concerning whom the LORD had charged them that they should not do like them. So they left all the commandments of the LORD their God, made for themselves a molded image and two calves, made a wooden image and worshiped all the host of heaven, and served Baal. And they caused their sons and daughters to pass through the fire, practiced witchcraft and soothsaying, and sold themselves to do evil in the sight of the LORD, to provoke Him to anger. Therefore the LORD was very angry with Israel, and removed them from His sight there was none left but the tribe of Judah alone. . And the LORD rejected all the descendants of Israel, afflicted them, and delivered them into the hand of plunderers, until He had cast them from His sight. For He tore Israel from the house of David, and they made Jeroboam the son of Nebat king. Then Jeroboam drove Israel from following the LORD, and made them commit a great sin. For the children of Israel walked in all the sins of Jeroboam which he did they did not depart from them, until the LORD removed Israel out of His sight, as He had said by all His servants the prophets. So Israel was carried away from their own land to Assyria, as it is to this day." Fatalities and serious injuries

Coroner’s inquests are a good source for telling us how football players were killed. Interestingly, in many cases the verdict was death by misadventure. Framing these incidents as accidents suggests players knew the risks involved.

Yet on some occasions men were also plainly murdered: perhaps in the heat of the game, perhaps using football as cover to settle long-standing quarrels. So we hear of players dying from a knee to the belly, a punch to the breast and being pushed or tripped to the ground. One had his nose and face smashed in by a ¼ pound stone. Another was stabbed in the upper arm and died the following week from infection. Several died from running on to sheathed knives.

And in one late 16th century incident tied up with witchcraft, we learn of old Brian Gunter of Berkshire drawing his dagger and using the pommel to smash two men’s skulls. They died within a fortnight.

He kneed me in the guts ref!

Documents that constituted part of the everyday business of various secular and ecclesiastical courts can also reveal a great deal about the dangers of football. Thus on 25 February 1582 at a game in Essex an attacker collided so violently with the man guarding the goal that the goalkeeper was knocked unconscious. He died that night.

Then there was the 17th century aristocrat who passed out from a blow to the chest during a game played against another Lord and his servants. Three months later he was bedridden. The cure: a pipe full of tobacco. The smoke got in his lungs and he soon vomited up bits of congealed blood.

Other players merely escaped with broken legs. Sometimes they recalled their injury had been sustained at a celebratory game, usually played after a baptism or wedding. One labourer complained that he had lost his livelihood from a football-related injury. But another claimed to have been miraculously cured when he saw King Henry VI in a dream.


President Armand Fallières of Paris was against the system of capital punishment.

He banned the guillotine for three years, from 1906 to 1909. The ban created chaos in pro-guillotines. The French newspaper Le Petit Parisien polled the French readers to get a majority view on guillotine punishments.

The results came out, and 74% of the French were pro-guillotine. Hence, the ban was lifted, and capital punishment started again.


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