by the point that Queen Victoria ascended the throne in 1837, the checklist of crimes susceptible to allure the dying penalty had successfully been decreased to homicide. but, regardless of this, the gallows remained a resource of controversy in Victorian Britain and there has been a becoming unease in liberal quarters surrounding the query of capital punishment.
In this ebook, James Gregory examines organised efforts to abolish capital punishment in Britain and the Empire within the Victorian period, focusing really at the actions of the Society for the Abolition of Capital Punishment. The amelioration of the notoriously ‘Bloody Code’ of the British nation could have constrained capital punishment successfully to a small variety of murderers after 1840 yet, regardless of this, capital punishment was once an issue of perennial debate, from the neighborhood area of faculty debating societies to the ‘imperial Parliament’, and a subject matter to bother the minds of considerate Victorians around the British world.
Drawing on quite a lot of resources, from pamphlets by way of abolitionists or their rivals to gallows broadsides, reliable inquiries, provincial newspapers, novels and brief tales, Gregory experiences a move said by way of contemporaries to be agitating one of many ‘questions of the day’ - difficult because it did modern theology, kingdom infliction of violence, and time-honored rules approximately punishment. He explores very important elements akin to: capital punishment debates within the ‘Lex Britannica’ of British colonies and dominions, the function of girls abolitionists and the category and gendered inflexions to the ‘gallows question’, the illustration of the matter of capital punishment in Victorian fiction, and the connection among abolitionists and the house place of work which exercised the royal prerogative of mercy.
While the abolitionism of Nonconformist reformers similar to the Quakers and Unitarians is well-known, Gregory introduces the reader to the abolitionist debates in Jewish, secularist and spiritualist circles, and explores subject matters reminiscent of the imagined function of the Queen as ‘fount of mercy’ and the nerve-racking determine of the hangman. learning the provincial, nationwide and foreign facets to the circulate, Victorians opposed to the Gallows bargains an enormous contribution to our realizing of Victorian reform actions, and Victorian culture.