In one of the last letters he ever sent, in October 1913, Ambrose Bierce wrote to his niece, “Goodbye—if you hear of my being stood up against a Mexican stone wall and shot to rags, please know that I think that a pretty good way to depart this life. It beats old age, disease, or falling down the cellar stairs. To be a Gringo in Mexico—ah, that is euthanasia.” His intention was to see the Mexican Revolution, but the circumstances of his death are unknown.
Lamoignon de Malesherbes chose to defend Louis XVI during his trial of 1792 and 1793; years earlier, as secretary of state, Malesherbes had reported on the corruption in the king’s administration and condemned the imprisonment of French citizens without trial. Both the king and the lawyer were eventually guillotined. “No one is ignorant of the fact that M. de M, after defending the people before King Louis XVI, defended King Louis XVI before the people.