The History of Leith

May 30, 2006


Accounts of murders and descriptions of executions were the biggest and most popular of the subjects covered by broadsides. Murders could easily generate a number of sheets, beginning with the discovery of the body, going on to the trial, the execution of the guilty party and verbatim transcriptions of their last words (Browse ‘last words’ broadsides). Many, if not all, of the scaffold speeches and confessions reported were purely imaginary. More often than not the criminal would give a brief life history, describing how he or she fell into a life of crime. Finally there would be an appeal for forgiveness and the readers would themselves be urged to live upright lives. for more click here

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