Which was the first country to abolish the death penalty

Pendennis

Ad Honorem
Mar 2013
3,386
Kirkcaldy, Scotland
Peter -my knowledge of the ptre robbery ''shaker downer'' during the time of the 1957 Homicide Act is based on my own time as a policeman 50 years ago.in the 1960's.Even although Scottish criminal law is very different from English criminal law-and still is-some statues like the 1957 Homicide Act were cross Anglo-Scots border in their legal application.Unlike the Larceny Act 1916 or the Offences Against the Pers8on Act of 1861 which have no legal force in Scotland because they are English laws.whose legality is not recognised by Scottish criminal courts so are unenforceable in Scotland
Older coppers told me about it and it was common practice in London because I have a mate now retired, who was in the Metropolitan Police CID back then who confirmed it.
Significantly, just after death penalty abolition in 1966, a London gangster called Smith and two mates who were sitting in a car looking suspicious in London- shot to death a young copper.when he approached their car.
Had they done that three years before in 1963, when the 1957 Homicide Act made execution mandatory for any crook shooting a policeman in the execution of their duty, these guys would have swung automatically. Being 1966 they didn't but received'' life sentences''
 
Aug 2012
804
Washington State, USA.
I thought Brazil was one of the first ones, but according to the posts here it was not. Brazil hasn't had an execution since 1876. This goes farther back than most nations.
 

LatinoEuropa

Ad Honorem
Oct 2015
5,222
Matosinhos Portugal
The death penalty for civil crimes was last applied in Brazil in 1876 and has not been officially used since the Proclamation of the Republic in 1889. Historically, Brazil is the second country in the Americas to abolish the death penalty as a form of punishment for Common crimes, preceded by Costa Rica, which abolished the practice in 1859. However, capital punishment continues to be foreseen in the country's legislation and can be used in case of war, and Brazil is the only one Portuguese-speaking country that provides for the death penalty in its Constitution.
 
Aug 2012
804
Washington State, USA.
The death penalty for civil crimes was last applied in Brazil in 1876 and has not been officially used since the Proclamation of the Republic in 1889. Historically, Brazil is the second country in the Americas to abolish the death penalty as a form of punishment for Common crimes, preceded by Costa Rica, which abolished the practice in 1859. However, capital punishment continues to be foreseen in the country's legislation and can be used in case of war, and Brazil is the only one Portuguese-speaking country that provides for the death penalty in its Constitution.
I think it is a bit of a myth that the death penalty is vanishing. I think due process is vanishing. The Philippines officially has no death penalty, but I'm sure everyone on Historum has heard a little about what is going on there.
There are also some startling stories about Brazilian cop vigilantes.
 

LatinoEuropa

Ad Honorem
Oct 2015
5,222
Matosinhos Portugal
I think it is a bit of a myth that the death penalty is vanishing. I think due process is vanishing. The Philippines officially has no death penalty, but I'm sure everyone on Historum has heard a little about what is going on there.
There are also some startling stories about Brazilian cop vigilantes.



Yes I agree with you with what it says, about the Philippines I know through the tv that there they have militias to liquidate drug traffickers etc.etc.
As it is today's world, I think later or later some countries will apply the death penalty. As I said if she were implanted in my country, I said this was late yesterday
 
Dec 2017
312
Regnum Teutonicum
The oldest country I know which abolished the death penalty was Magadha under the Gupta Dynasty (at latest under Chandragupta II who reigned from 375 - 413/415). The Chinese monk Faxian (he traveled from 399 - 412) mentions that even high treason was only punished by cuting the right hand.
 
Oct 2017
339
America ??
Increasing abolishment of death penalty is humane & highly progressive in many ways, but an unfortunate major consequence of that is that life imprisonment, including without parole, seems to have taken its place & became very common.

Check out my other thread on that:
 
Nov 2019
4
NewYork
The method of capital punishment used in Portugal was by hanging. Portugal was the first country in the world to begin the process to abolish the death penalty, abolishing it in stages – for political crimes in 1852, for all crimes except the military in 1867, and for all crimes in 1911