headsman

Part of speech: noun

A public executioner.

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Usage examples "headsman":

  1. But we were so well satisfied with his window as to shrink involuntarily from it, and from the scene without whose eternal substance showed through the shadowy illusion of passing hansoms and omnibuses, like the sole fact of the street, the king's voice rising above the noises in tender caution to a heedless witness, " Have a care of the axe; have a care," and then gravely to the headsman: " When I stretch out my hands so, then-" The drums were ordered beaten, so that we could not hear more; and we went out, and crossed among the cabs and 'busses to the horse- guards sitting shrunken on their steeds, and passed between them into the park beyond where the beds of flowers spread their soft autumnal bloom in the low sun of the September day. - "London Films", W.D. Howells.
  2. If Robespierre recalled it in his power, this memory must have fallen colder upon his heart than the ax of the headsman." - "Madame Roland, Makers of History", John S. C. Abbott.
  3. She actually kissed the hand of the vihodar, the headsman. - "Pretty Michal", Mór Jókai.