May 28, 1738 – March 28,1814

French physician, president of the Chamber of the Provinces in 1775, founder of the French Acadamy of Medicine, and deputy to the French assembly in 1789, Dr. Guillotin neither invented nor met his death by the guillotine.

As a deputy to the States-General, he was the first to demand a doubling of the representatives of the Third Estate. It was in that assembly on December 1, 1789 that he urged capital punishment should be inflicted as speedily and painlessly as possible, and argued for a machine designed for this end. The guillotine was invented by Antoine Louis, secretary of the Acadamy of Surgeons, and a mechanic named Schmidt. Prior to the French Revolution similar devices were in use in Scotland, England and other European counties.

According to Brewer’s Dictionary of Phrase & Fable the unfortunate of the same name who died by the guillotine was J.M.V. Guillotin, a doctor of Lyons.