John "The Gneech" Robey (the_gneech) wrote,
John "The Gneech" Robey
the_gneech

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Hello, All You Happy People :)

Hmm ... my "friend of" list has grown again since the last time I looked ... with some people I know, some people I don't know, and very likely some people I know but don't know that I know.

Well, hello out there! :) Hope you're enjoying my LJ. To welcome you aboard, here's Today's Forgotten English!

whiddiful
One who deserves hanging; a scamp, rascal; one who would fill a "widdy," or [hangman's] halter. Attributively, deserving to be hanged, scampish, rascally; Scotland.
--Sir James Murray's New English Dictionary, 1928


London's New Gibbet
On this date in 1783, the place in London where public executions were carried out shifted from the infamous Tyburn Scaffold to Newgate prison, ending a tradition that had dated back to 1196. A "Tyburn tulip" -- a prisoner convicted of a capital offense -- enjoyed an odd benefit at a hospice known as St. Giles-in-the-Field. There, John Stow's Survay of London (1598) reported, "the prisoners conveyed from the City of London towards Tyburn, there to be executed for treasons, felonies, or other trespasses, were presented with a great bowl of ale, thereof to drink at their pleasure, as to be their last refreshing in this life." Since 1851 the monument known as Marble Arch has stood in a corner of Hyde Park as a reminder of these gallows. Nearby, at what is today Speakers' Corner, it was customary for the condemned to make a last penitential speech, called "preaching at Tyburn Cross."

-The Gneech
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