Sanson, Charles Henri

BORN 15 Feb 1739, Paris - DIED 4 Jul 1806, Paris
GRAVE LOCATION Paris: Cimetière de Montmartre, 20 Avenue Rachel (division 20)

Charles Sanson was the son of Charles-Jean-Baptiste Sanson and Madeleine Tronson. He was educated in Rouen until his father was recognised as the royal executioner and he had to leave the school. He was privately educated afterwards.

In 1757 he assisted the executioner of Reims, his uncle Nicolas-Charles-Gabriel Sanson (1721-1795), with the execution of Robert-François Damiens. In 1765 he married his second wife Marie-Anne Jugier and they had two sons, Henri and Gabriel.

In 1778 he succeeded his gfather as chief executioner. He was the first to use the guillotine when Nicolas Jacques Pelletier was executed on 25 April 1792. Although he was no supporter of the monarchy he was reluctant to execute Louis XVI in January 1793, but he did perform the execution. He was a witness of the execution of Marie-Antoinette that was performed by his son, who succeeded him in 1795.

• Son: Sanson, Henri

Related persons
• executed Louis XVI Auguste, King of France


The grave of the Sanson family at Montmartre Cimetière, Paris.
Picture by Androom (18 May 2005)


• Le Clère, Marcel, Cimetières & Sepultures de Paris, Hachette, Paris, 1978
• Claude Augé (ed.), Larousse Universel en 2 volumes, Librarie Larousse, 1922
Charles-Henri Sanson - Wikipedia

Sanson, Henri

Published: 24 Mar 2018
Last update: 01 Jun 2020