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EXECUTION BY DROWNING. A MILD FORM OF DEATH. This mode of capital punishment has not long since ceased in Europe, and is probably still in use in other parts of the world. As early as the first century of our era, the Germans executed the meaner and more infamous criminals by plunging them into bogs and fens. In the middle ages, execu tion by drowning was so common that grants of the right to inflict capital punish. ment ran, " with pit and gallows." The pit or well was for drowning female delinquents, but the penalty was sometimes inflicted on men. The doom of the parricide was to be tied up in a sack and cast into the sea. Drowning seems to have been regarded as a mild form of the death penalty, for in Scotland, in the year 1556, a man convicted of theft and sacrilege was sentenced to be suffocated by water, "by the Queen's special grace." At this date, the penalty had grown nearly obsolete in England, but in Scotland it survived until 1685. The last execution by drowning in Switzerland was in 1652, in Austria in 1776, in Iceland in 1777, and in Russia early in the eighteenth century. One-of the most eccentric modes of inflicting the penalty was adopted in Saxonyin the year 1734. A woman con victed of child-murder was sewn up in a .sack, along with a cat, a dog, and a snake, and then thrown into the water and drowned. Sir Walter Besant, in "The Master Crafts. man," describes how that, as late as two' centuries ago, pirates and murderers were tied to a stake at Execution Dock when the water was out, so that when the tide rose they were gradually suffocated. The truth, however, seems to be that the criminals were hanged at low-water mark, "and there to remain till three tides overflowed them,"