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Sir Henry Vane, born November 15, 1613 – executed for treason in London, June 14, 1662

“[King Charles II] promised that the republican general John Lambert and the politician Sir Henry Vane, both sentenced to death by the Lords, should be reprieved, as the Commons wished, because they had not been present at his father’s trial. Vane, however, conducted such a brilliant defence that Charles allegedly thought it was too dangerous to let him live…” — Jenny Uglow, A Gambling Man: Charles II and the Restoration, 1660-1670 (2009)

“He made a long speech, many times interrupted by the Sheriff and others there; and they would have taken his paper out of his hand, but he would not let it go. But they caused all the books of those that writ after him to be given the Sheriff; and the trumpets were brought under the scaffold that he might not be heard. Then he prayed, and so fitted himself, and received the blow; but the scaffold was so crowded that we could not see it done….He had a blister, or issue, upon his neck, which he desired them not hurt: he changed not his colour or speech to the last, but died justifying himself and the cause he had stood for; and spoke very confidently of his being presently at the right hand of Christ; and in all things appeared the most resolved man that ever died in that manner, and showed more of heat than cowardice, but yet with all humility and gravity” — Samuel Pepys, Diary.

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