The British parliament passes a law authorizing the death penalty for the crime of adultery. There is no record of this punishment being used, however, and the law will be repealed upon the Restoration of the monarchy under Charles II of England in 1660.
The Act for suppressing the detestable sins of Incest, Adultery and Fornication says:
"And be it further Enacted by the authority aforesaid, That in case any married woman shall from and after the Four and twentieth day of June aforesaid, be carnally known by any man (other them her Husband) (except in Case of Ravishment) and of such offence or offences shall be convicted as aforesaid by confession or otherwise, every such Offence and Offences shall be and is hereby adjudged Felony: and every person, as well the man as the woman, offending therein, and confessing the same, or being thereof convicted by verdict upon Indictment or Presentment as aforesaid, shall suffer death as in case of Felony, without benefit of Clergy."
There are some exceptions in addition to the aforementioned ravishment: for example, if the man doesn't know the woman is married and if the woman's husband has been gone for at least three years or is considered dead.
For England at this time in history, the death penalty is a basic means of social control over the population.