Sunday, March 02, 2008

On this day

in 1882, Scotsman Roderick Maclean attemted to assassinate Queen Victoria.

This was the last of eight attempts over a period of forty years to kill or assault Victoria, and it was the only one in which the gun in use was actually loaded. McLean's motive was purportedly a curt reply to poetry of his mailed to the Queen.

Tried for high treason that April 20, the jury after five minutes' deliberation found the Scotsman McLean "not guilty, but insane" and he lived out his remaining days in Broadmoor Asylum. The verdict prompted the Queen to ask for a change in English law so that those implicated in cases with similar outcomes would be considered as "guilty, but insane."

Eight attempts and we still didn't have as much authritarian control or protection for VIP's as we do now.

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