Meaning of “Margaret on the Guillotine” by Morrissey

The song Margaret on the Guillotine appears on Morrissey’s debut solo album titled Viva Hate. The song, which is one of Morrissey’s most controversial songs, as the title implies talks about the death of Margaret Thatcher (popularly known as The Iron Lady), who was at that time the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom. The lyrics of the song see Morrissey asks approximately five times when Thatcher would die. He then goes on to say it would be a “wonderful dream” if Thatcher were to die.

The lyric “Margaret on a Guillotine” tells us how the narrator (Morrissey) wanted Thatcher to die. He wanted her executed by guillotine. For readers who may not know what a guillotine is, a guillotine is an apparatus which was used in the olden days to execute criminals by beheading them.

Margaret on the guillotine

Facts about “Margaret on the Guillotine”

  1. The song is the 12th track on Morrissey’s debut album Viva Hate.
  2. The song was produced by Stephen Street.
  3. According to Morrissey’s 2013, autobiography titled Autobiography, shortly after he release Margaret on the Guillotine, he was cross-examined by British police over the song. He said the police quizzed him trying to find out whether he was a threat to Thatcher.

It is worth noting that Thatcher died of a stroke in 2013, the same year Morrissey’s autobiography came out.  Thatcher was 87.

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