The guillotine used on France’s King Louis XVI on Jan. 21 1793 was meant to be more egalitarian and humane.
But as so often happens, the effort to improve fundamental things by applying mathematical technique, including those involving life and death, ended up grotesquely inhumane and brutal.
The result was right out of C.S. Lewis’s National Institute of Coordinated Experiments. It would have been fairer and more humane to exile the hapless French monarch or, failing that, dispatch him the old-fashioned way with a hand-held ax or sword.
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