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WILL: 'Cruel and unusual' punishment continues to change

Published 06/27/2012, Syndicated columnist

WASHINGTON — In the 1790s, a Tennessee man convicted of horse theft got off easy. Instead of being hanged, as horse thieves often were, he was sentenced to “stand in the pillory one hour, receive thirty-nine lashes upon his bareback well laid on, have his ears nailed to the pillory and cut off, and that he should be branded upon one cheek with the letter H and on the other with the letter T, in a plain and visible manner.”

Word count: 688

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