FRANCE: Guillotine to Ignominy?

Up at auction in Paris last week came a rusty, mildewed guillotine certified to have cut off more than 1,000 aristocratic heads during the French Revolution. After brisk bidding it was knocked down for 30,000 francs ($1,980) to a buyer who refused to give his name. Reporters thought they recognized the owner of a brothel which boasts that its "torture room" is the most authentically equipped in Paris.

Depression being what it is in France, this struggling emporium of tourist thrills offers for 150 francs ($10) in the afternoon or 450 francs ($30)...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!