The death penalty has been seen in law throughout many civilizations. The earliest use of this practice took place about 1,500 years ago and were brutal forms of killing. This includes crucifixion, drowning, beating to death, and burning alive. Britain heavily utilized the death penalty and had various rulers that would abuse this power. William the conqueror was a more sane ruler and only used this form of punishment in times of war. As for the next ruler Henry VIII, he executed about 72,000 people for crimes of treason, marrying a Jew, and not confessing to a crime. European settlers brought the death penalty to America. Our first execution took place in 1608, and there have been many killings since. During this time, America’s use of the death penalty was for ludicrous crimes, including stealing grapes, killing chickens, and trading with Indians.