Decapitation (from Latin, caput, capita, meaning head) is the separation of the head from body. Beheading typically refers to the act of intentional decapitation, e.g., as a means of murder or execution; it may be accomplished, for example, with an axe, sword, knife, wire, or by means of a guillotine. Ritualistic decapitation after execution by some other means, sometimes followed by public display of the severed head, has also been common throughout history. An executioner carrying out decapitations is called a headsman.
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