All the judges were of one opinion and condemned Dareius to death, whereupon the servants of the king seized him and led him away into a chamber near by, whither the executioner was summoned. The executioner came, with a sharp knife in his hand, wherewith the heads of condemned persons are cut off; but when he saw Dareius, he was confounded, and retired towards the door with averted gaze, declaring that he could not and would not take the life of a king.
Plutarch. Plutarch's Lives. with an English Translation by. Bernadotte Perrin. Cambridge, MA. Harvard University Press. London. William Heinemann Ltd. 1926. 11.
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