Why Dawn? Shes a lovely girl!

#1
My deepest apologies for the flippant title.

However, I'm sure we've all heard of various individuals being 'shot at dawn'. But does anyone know why it was dawn? Why not any other time of day or the middle of the night?
 
#5
Not too bad in the winter, when you can get a bit of a lie in. Wouldn't fancy being shot at dawn in the summer, though.
 
#6
Seriously. I suppose Dawn was the time when troops got ready to move. They were then all gathered together before the queue of the advance or retreat. Most logical time to carry out something that, by its very nature, was designed to create the maximun effect upon the maximum number of troops. I suppose FP No 1 would have been started at night?
 
#7
putteesinmyhands said:
Not too bad in the winter, when you can get a bit of a lie in. Wouldn't fancy being shot at dawn in the summer, though.
What would they do in Greenland?
 
#8
Harry Paget Flashman said:
However, I'm sure we've all heard of various individuals being 'shot at dawn'. But does anyone know why it was dawn? Why not any other time of day or the middle of the night?

I think (i.e., I don't know for certain) that Jewish (& so early Christian & Muslim) tradition required the dead to be buried before night. Many of the Jewish laws are in Deuteronomy, so a quick Google found this;

21:22. When a man hath committed a crime for which he is to be punished with death, and being condemned to die is hanged on a gibbet:
His body shall not remain upon the tree, but shall be buried the same day: for he is accursed of God that hangeth on a tree: and thou shalt not defile thy land, which the Lord thy God shall give thee in possession.

I'd think this probably started the tradition of execution at dawn since it would allow a whole day to torture, kill and bury the victim.
 

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