Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Background Information on Medieval Torture

In the dark ages torture was used on;

- Spies

- Traitors or thieves

- Rebellious people

- Witch craft

- Military disobedience

- People guilty of sodomy

- Women guilty of adultery

- People guilty of incest or sexual union with Satan

- Heretical preachers

- Blasphemers

When a person was to receive punishment it was mainly given in the town’s main square, to communicate to the villages what would happen if they committed certain crimes.

Rectal, Oral, and Vaginal Pear

This instrument was forced into the mouth or rectum of male victims and into the vagina of female victims. The instrument had a screw which would progressively expand to the maximum opening of the elements it was made of. This method was inflicted on: people guilty of sodomy, on women guilty of adultery, people guilty of incest or sexual union with Satan, & heretical preachers and blasphemers. The whole point of this torturing method was to inflict punishment that was the opposite of the crime committed.

The Garrotte

It had an iron collar that had an iron on its rear which penetrated the cervical vertebrae in a way that the convict died both for asphyxiation and because the spinal cord was crushed. The device has a Spanish name because the Spaniards improved this torturing method and made it become “the official instrument of capital punishment.” This instrument remained in use until 1975, when the last person who was executed was a young student who turned out to be innocent.

The Saw

The victim was hung in an inverted position in order to assure sufficient oxygenation of the brain and to slow down the general loss of blood so that they didn't lose consciousness at once, thus to inflict a longer suffering before death struck. The saw was a cheap way to kill or torture a victim who was accused of: witchery, adultery, murder, blasphemy or even theft. Depending on the victim and/or torturer, this torture could last hour’s maybe even days. When a confession was required, the victim would be forced to watch another person suffer this horrific torture. If the victim still did not confess, they to, would be slowly cut in half.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Cat’s Paw or Spanish Tickler

This tool was brutally used to rip the victim's flesh to shreds. Because of the dimension of the claws, muscles and bones were no obstacle in this barbaric practice. It was, of course, inflicted on victims tied up hand and foot. This form of torture was mainly used on male offenders and got its name due to the tools similarity with a cat's paw with very long nails.


The victim's fingers were placed in the device (see below) and would slowly be crushed as the torturer turned the handles located on the top of the device. This form of torture could also be used on the victims foot. It would be used to extract confessions form both male and female victims.

The Virgin of Nuremberg

The name of this torture instrument originated from a prototype that was constructed in the town of Nuremburg. The sarcophagus was fitted with spikes on the inside that pierced different parts of the body but never transfixed vital organs in order to keep the victim alive, hanging upright. This torture chamber was so thick that no squeal could be heard unless the door was open.