An execution is the judicial version of murder -- that is to say, the deceased was deceased as a result of something bearing a resemblance to a "sentence of a lawful court", as opposed to simply happening because A wanted B dead.
Executions originate in pre-history (which is to say that almost every civilization's remaining records talk of them, in one way or another), and continue throughout period. Methods varied, from the stoning of the Hebrews and the crucifixions of the Romans in Palestine, to the decapitation of Tudor England and the garrote of Ottoman Turkey
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