Capital punishment

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Death penalty laws by nation:
   Abolished for all crimes
   Abolished for crimes not committed in exceptional circumstances (such as crimes committed in time of war))
   Legal form of punishment but not used in the last 10 years (or has a moratorium in effect)
   Legal form of punishment for certain offenses

Capital punishment or the death penalty is a legal process whereby a person is put to death by the state as a punishment for a crime. The judicial decree that someone be punished in this manner is a death sentence, while the actual process of killing the person is an execution. The term capital originates from the Latin capitalis, literally "regarding the head" (referring to execution by beheading).

Current use[edit]

Capital punishment and corporal punishment[edit]

Strictly speaking, capital punishment could be considered a form of corporal punishment because by being killed, the person suffers bodily. In reality, however, the phrase "corporal punishment" does not include capital punishment, and the two concepts are completely different in practical, legal and moral terms. While judicial, prison and military corporal punishment as officially practised today does not endanger life, in previous centuries such severe forms of corporal punishment (flogging or beating with other implements) existed that these resulted in death. Sometimes delinquents were sentenced to such harsh forms of corporal punishment (e.g. running the gauntlet) that it was unsure if they would survive it, possibly mutilated, or not.

See also[edit]

Smallwikipedialogo.png This page uses content from Wikipedia. The original article was at Capital_punishment. The list of authors can be seen in the page history. As with Spanking Art, the text of Wikipedia is available under a copyleft license, the Creative Commons Attribution Sharealike license.