Branks

Branks

These devices, which existed in a vast profusion of fantastical and sometimes downright artistic styles from about 1500 to 1800, were inflected on those who had permitted themselves, ill-advisedly, utterances displeasing to those in power. The victims, locked into the masks and staked out in the town square, were also treated roughly by the crowd. Painful beatings, besmearing with faeces and urine, and serious wounding, sometimes fatal, was their lot.

Chastity Belt
Heretic’s Fork
Guillotine
Hatchet for cutting of hands and feets
Hanging cages
Branks
Knee splitter
A chain scourges
Iron Maiden
Interrogation chair
Head crusher
Thumbscrews
Spiked punishment collar
Skull splitter
The oral, rectal and vaginal pear