'Working' guillotine up for auction in France

25th March 2014, Comments 0 comments

A 19th century guillotine in perfect working order goes up for auction in France on Thursday and is expected to fetch up to 60,000 euros ($82,000), the auctioneers said.

The wood, iron, steel and brass guillotine, synonymous with the 1789 French Revolution, was used to behead people in the second half of the 19th century.

It will be auctioned on Thursday in the northern city of Nantes and auctioneer Francois-Xavier Duflos said it was expected to fetch between 50,000 and 60,000 euros.

"It is rare for this type of object to go to auction, so it is rather difficult to set a price, but we have taken into account its rarity," he said.

"It would be nice if it remained in a historic setting, either on display in a chateau or in a public collection," he said.

Duflos said the guillotine was used by the army but he did not elaborate.

The guillotine has been in private hands for over a century and the current owner had it passed down to him from his grandfather, who apparently bought it in the early 20th century.

The blade of the guillotine bears the inscription "Armees de la Republique," a revolutionary force created to defend France from its neighbours after the 1789 French Revolution.


© 2014 AFP

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