That if his majesty, in consideration of your services, and pursuant to his own merciful disposition, would please to spare your life, and only give orders to put out both your eyes, he humbly conceived, that by this expedient justice might in some measure be satisfied, and all the world would applaud the lenity of the emperor, as well as the fair and generous proceedings of those who have the honour to be his counsellors.
In three days your friend the secretary will be directed to come to your house, and read before you the articles of impeachment; and then to signify the great lenity and favour of his majesty and council, whereby you are only condemned to the loss of your eyes, which his majesty does not question you will gratefully and humbly submit to; and twenty of his majesty's surgeons will attend, in order to see the operation well performed, by discharging very sharp-pointed arrows into the balls of your eyes, as you lie on the ground.
It was a custom introduced by this prince and his ministry (very different, as I have been assured, from the practice of former times,) that after the court had decreed any cruel execution, either to gratify the monarch's resentment, or the malice of a favourite, the emperor always made a speech to his whole council, expressing his great lenity and tenderness, as qualities known and confessed by all the world.
But do not imagine that with all this lenity
I have for a moment given up my plan of her marriage.
If the girl had been one of those vain trollops, of which we have too many in the parish, I should have condemned my brother for his lenity
Not that charity only which causes us to help the needy and comfort the suffering, but that feeling of universal philanthropy which, by teaching us to love, causes us to judge with lenity
all men; striking at the root of self-righteousness, and warning us to be sparing of our condemnation of others, while our own salvation is not yet secure.
To give you pleasure, my sweet Renee, I promise to show all the lenity
in my power; but if the charges brought against this Bonapartist hero prove correct, why, then, you really must give me leave to order his head to be cut off.
The Spaniard who was governor told them, in so many words, that if they had been of his own country he would have hanged them; for all laws and all governors were to preserve society, and those who were dangerous to the society ought to be expelled out of it; but as they were Englishmen, and that it was to the generous kindness of an Englishman that they all owed their preservation and deliverance, he would use them with all possible lenity
, and would leave them to the judgment of the other two Englishmen, who were their countrymen.
The new outrage, by which she had provoked her fate, seemed to render further lenity
impossible; and a gentleman in military dress, with a stout man of inferior rank, drew towards the door of the meeting-house, and awaited her approach.
To the extent this attitude is normatively unjustifiable, however, this Section contends that, as a purely epistemic matter, much more aggressive application of the rule of lenity
is called for.
Rule of lenity
Johnson, dissenting, agreed that the statute is ambiguous but disagreed with the court imputing the meaning of the former statute to the current one, saying that it effectively convicted the defendant for violating a statute no longer in effect.
Among such modes of resolution are the rule of lenity
in criminal law, the executive pardon power, the application of equity jurisprudence to "hard cases" or manifest absurdities, the controversial but practically unstoppable power of jury nullification, as well as more rarefied mechanisms such as federal and state religious freedom restoration acts and the power of judicial review itself.