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executioner

Definitions

  • WordNet 3.6
    • n executioner an official who inflicts capital punishment in pursuit of a warrant
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Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
  • Interesting fact: Grover Cleveland, the 24th president of the US, worked briefly as an executioner before becoming president. He hung at least two convicted criminals.
    • Executioner One who executes; an executer.
    • Executioner One who puts to death in conformity to legal warrant, as a hangman.
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Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • n executioner One who executes or carries into effect; especially, one who carries into effect a death sentence of a court or tribunal; a functionary who inflicts capital punishment in pursuance of a legal warrant; a headsman or hangman.
    • n executioner That by means of which anything is performed; an instrument or implement used in producing a desired effect.
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Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • Executioner one who executes, esp. one who inflicts capital punishment
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Quotations

  • Lucretius
    Lucretius
    “Though the dungeon, the scourge, and the executioner be absent, the guilty mind can apply the goad and scorch with blows.”
  • Jean-Paul Sartre
    Jean-Paul%20Sartre
    “I hate victims who respect their executioners.”
  • John Donne
    John%20Donne
    “But I do nothing upon myself, and yet I am my own executioner.”

Idioms

Judge, jury and executioner - If someone is said to be the judge, jury, and executioner, it means they are in charge of every decision made, and they have the power to be rid of whomever they choose.
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Etymology

Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
Fr. exécuter—L. exsequi, exsecutusex, out, sequi, to follow.

Usage

In literature:

All preserve a calmness of demeanour that even their judges and executioners cannot but admire.
"Condemned as a Nihilist" by George Alfred Henty
I am the executioner of my own children!
"Eastern Tales by Many Story Tellers" by Various
Mere suspicion was enough for the executioners.
"Jewish Fairy Tales and Legends" by Gertrude Landa
At this point a Lama approached and slipped something into the mouth of the executioner, who foamed at the lips.
"An Explorer's Adventures in Tibet" by A. Henry Savage Landor
Having given some directions in an under-tone to the latter, he retired, leaving the executioner alone with his victim.
"Southern Literature From 1579-1895" by Louise Manly
The priests arrived, after them the soldiers, then the executioners.
"The Regent's Daughter" by Alexandre Dumas (Pere)
When the executioner came for the toilette, she borrowed his shears to cut off a lock of her hair.
"Lectures on the French Revolution" by John Emerich Edward Dalberg-Acton
How long have you been executioner that you know not yet how to put the knot?
"State Trials, Political and Social" by Various
I begged that I might be slain by the royal hand and not by that of the executioner.
"The Canterbury Puzzles" by Henry Ernest Dudeney
There was no occasion for the shedding of blood, for there was no resistance made on the part of the intended executioners.
"The Giraffe Hunters" by Mayne Reid
The upright judge had made her the executioner.
"The Art of Disappearing" by John Talbot Smith
Upon the 24th, they assembled in their robes in the inner parliament house, and the boots and executioner were presented.
"Biographia Scoticana (Scots Worthies)" by John Howie
The executioners thrust the ends of their pincers into the coals and held them there.
"The Saracen: Land of the Infidel" by Robert Shea
In bygone times it had the distinction of having its own public executioner.
"Bygone Punishments" by William Andrews
For a long time the executioner stood above the body, waiting, listening from the shadow to the faint receding breath-strokes of his victim.
"They of the High Trails" by Hamlin Garland
The first turned out a madman; the second a brute; the third his people's executioner.
"Secret Memoirs: The Story of Louise, Crown Princess" by Henry W. Fischer
There was in the city of Constance an executioner who passed for a sorcerer.
"The Phantom World" by Augustin Calmet
The executioner's head was quickly stricken off, and another headsman obtained.
"England, Picturesque and Descriptive" by Joel Cook
Nothing but the weariness of the executioner and his aids, put an end to this horrid butchery.
"Blackwood's Edinburgh Magazine, Volume 57, No. 353, March 1845" by Various
The two executioners carried under their arm a package of hazel twigs, long, flexible, and as thick as a thumb.
"The Silver Cross or The Carpenter of Nazareth" by Eugène Sue
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In poetry:

In a red shirt, with a face like an udder,
The executioner cuts my head off, too,
It lies together with the others
Here, in a slippery box, at the very bottom.
"The Lost Tram" by Nikolai Stepanovich Gumilev
They spring us: I proved it, albeit
I played executioner then
For discipline, justice, the like.
Yon stick I had handy to strike
Should have warned of the tyrant in men.
"To Children: For Tyrants" by George Meredith
And in his blessing thou art blest:
For where thou onely wert before
An executioner at best,
Thou art a gard'ner now, and more,
An usher to convey our souls
Beyond the utmost starres and poles.
"Time" by George Herbert
OH! listen to the tale of little ANNIE PROTHEROE.
She kept a small post-office in the neighbourhood of BOW;
She loved a skilled mechanic, who was famous in his day -
A gentle executioner whose name was GILBERT CLAY.
"Annie Protheroe. A Legend of Stratford-le-Bow" by William Schwenck Gilbert
Huss gazed at the peasant, he gazed at the pile,
Then over his features there stole a smile.
``O Sancta Simplicitas! By God's troth,
This faggot of yours may save us both,
And He who judgeth perchance prefer
To the victim the executioner!''
"The Death Of Huss" by Alfred Austin
Then he told the executioner his foes would remember him hereafter,
And he was as well pleased as if his Majesty had made him Knight of the Garter;
Then he asked to be allowed to cover his head,
But he was denied permission, yet he felt no dread.
"The Execution of James Graham, Marquis of Montrose" by William Topaz McGonagall

In news:

Mr Goetz's own account of the incident, just released, changes the question: When does defending yourself turn into appointing yourself judge, jury and executioner .
When does defending yourself turn into appointing yourself judge, jury and executioner .
Undated police handout file photo of Heriberto "The Executioner" Lazcano, head of the Zetas drug gang.
A single swing of the royal executioner's sword kills off the show's best-known actor, eliminates the story's main character, and chucks the rules of television right out the window, Jaime-style.
His last hopes fading, a 30-year-old illiterate Gypsy laborer whose lawyers say was tortured into confessing to murder awaits his unannounced appointment with the executioner.
Mr Goetz's own account of the incident, just released, changes the question: When does defending yourself turn into appointing yourself judge, jury and executioner.
Undated police handout file photo of Heriberto "The Executioner" Lazcano, head of the Zetas drug gang.
Boxing great Bernard Hopkins, a k a "The Executioner," tells us he was once nearly thrown out of Madison Square Garden before his own fight, against Felix Trinidad shortly after 9/11.
Sorry there are no showtimes for Bronx Executioner on Monday, December 10.
Sorry there are no showtimes for Bronx Executioner on Thursday, December 6.
New executioners for Sri Lanka.
Once again, however, Hubert Lester Michael Jr escaped his date with the executioner.
I think Robert S Wistrich's article, "Helping Hitler", suffers from the same faults as the book he discusses, Daniel Jonah Goldhagen's Willing Executioners: Ordinary Germans and the Holocaust.
Lawyers for Ohio death row inmate Ronald Post say he is so fat that his executioners won't be able to find veins in his arms and legs for the lethal injection.
Neither of them is believed to be the owl executioner.
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