n Acta Criminologica: Southern African Journal of Criminology - The new Fremantle Prison gallows and the gruesome science of hanging in Colonial Western Australia : editorial

Volume 22, Issue 3
  • ISSN : 1012-8093



Hanging has a gruesome pedigree. It began in tenth century Britain as an extremely public and deliberately slow punishment. The first gallows were trees and in those days all that was needed was a strong branch and an unforgiving rope. The first victims were choked to death. The intent was to extend the suffering of the condemned for long enough to amuse the crowd and impress upon them the cruel majesty of the Law. It was this tradition of hanging that arrived in Australia with the First Fleet in 1788, and in Western Australia with Captain Stirling's initial contingent of settlers in 1829.

Loading full text...

Full text loading...


Article metrics loading...


This is a required field
Please enter a valid email address
Approval was a Success
Invalid data
An Error Occurred
Approval was partially successful, following selected items could not be processed due to error