8. The Marquis de Sade’s Perversions Were So Bad, They Got Him Sentenced to Death
In 1772, the Marquis de Sade had another major scandal, when he and his body servant incapacitated numerous prostitutes in Marseilles with Spanish fly, then had their deviant way with them. The duo were sentenced to death, but it was in absentia: they had skipped the trial, and fled to Italy. They were caught and imprisoned in Savoy, but escaped after a few months and hid in de Sade’s rural castle in southeast France. There, de Sade had a high turnover of employees. He kept hiring youngsters as domestics, only for them to quit within a short time, complaining of the Marquis’ predation and abuse.
When the youngsters’ parents complained to the authorities, de Sade fled to Italy once again, until things quieted down. He returned to France in 1776, and resumed his crazy perversions, which steadily intensified, with one scandal following another in quick succession. Finally, the authorities tricked de Sade in 1777 into going to Paris to visit his supposedly sick mother. Unbeknownst to him, she had actually died. Soon as he arrived, he was arrested and locked up in the dungeon of a royal fortress.