Torture is widely practiced worldwide for prevention, questioning and punishment but in ancient time the techniques and devices were truly terrifying to behold. These cruel instruments were used right through history to penalize persistent offenders. These days’ human rights commissions play an active role in making the process more humane but think of those people in the Medieval Ages who committed a crime and were brutally punished for their act by means of some cruel devices. So here are some of these devices that will scare hell out you…..
Rat torture method was used very commonly in the past. A rat was placed on the victim's stomach, covered with a metal container, the container was heated up and the rat was strained to find a way out, as it couldn’t find the path through metal it dug a hole through the body of the victim and ultimately resulted in his death.
The Heretic fork was tied on the neck of the victim with the two sharp ends of the fork pointed towards the lower chin and upper chest respectively, the sharp ends penetrated though the area where they are placed, until the victim confessed his crime.
The device was used to pour molten metal on the victim’s body, as the metal was poured it rushed from one side to the other. It was primarily used to take out the executions. Mainly molten silver was used and was poured in the eyes resulting in death of the victim.
Main principle of Thumbscrew was crushing the fingers and toes of the victim till the authorities were satisfied. Fingers were placed inside the thumbscrew and slowly it was screwed to tighten up so that the victim feels more pain and ultimately confesses.
Rack is one of the most painful forms of torture used in the medieval period. The method was used to extract confessions from the victim but was harsh as well as brutal. Legs of the victim were tied to the ground and a couple of ropes were used to pull the arms. The instrument included a wheel, as it was turned the arms stretch was more and the victim was tortured to the extent until his limbs were broken.
This device was used to punish women. As the name says, the breast ripper was used to rip the breasts apart, literally. On the victims naked breasts the hot/cold claws were tightened and after getting a good grip they were torn apart.
The Iron Maiden torture cabinet was used to interrogate the victims, it consisted of a cabinet with hinged front in which a person was fitted. Inside the cabinet were nails, spikes or knives which pierced through the body of the victim. With no room to get past the spikes, the torture continued and the victim’s body is damaged brutally.
The Rectal, Oral and Vaginal Pear torture device was inflicted upon the people who were guilty of adultery, or on heretical preachers and blasphemers. The device was inserted in the mouth or rectum of male victims and into the vagina of female victims, the mechanism expanded the devices aperture with the help of an attached screw.
Another popular form of torture, termed as the head or limb crusher, consisted of pointed spikes of various sizes. The effect was so torturous that the victim could even hear his bones cracking. This form could be used with other tool like skin flayers, prods and pokers, breast-rippers, etc. to worsen the intensity of torture.
The device was simply built to kill those who were accused of stealing. The victim was fit in the Crocodile Tube which had spikes inside; whole body was inserted in the tube except the head and the feet. The tube was then compressed torturing the victim, fire underneath the tube helped in extracting confesses from him.
The device was built for killing, the one known as capital punishment. The Wheel came to existence in Greece. Victim was tied to the wheel through the spokes in it; limbs of the victim were tied across the spokes. Through openings in the wheel the victim was hit by a hammer up to when his bones are not broken and then the accused is left there until the time he dies.
The brazen bull was an execution device which was invented in Greece by an Athenian Perillos. The victim was placed inside a bull made of metal, and then a fire was ignited under the bull and the victim was burnt alive, but slowly and painfully.
Name of the instrument implies that it is used just in the knees but actually the Knee Splitter was used in other parts of the body as well. Spikes varied from three to twenty in number. The handle was turned to make the claws slam against each other injuring any skin in between. In other variants of this device the claws were heated to make them more painful.
A device consisted of a main board cut with a wedge at the top fastened to two cross beams. The naked victim was placed on the main board as if riding a donkey, and various numbers of weights were attached to the feet.
Judas Cradle may not be violent and bloody. The anus or vagina of the unfortunate victim was put over the point of the cradle. Then the person was lowered onto it with ropes. The victim usually had no clothes and sometimes for extra fun they used to put some weights on his or her ankles. The cradle wasn’t washed for extra cruelty, so that the victim could easily catch infection.
Only two man saw, a rope, and a tree was required to hang someone from their feet. Death came normally in mere hours as the person was tied upside down so that the blood would rush to head. By doing this person stayed conscious for maximum time.
More a form of public humiliation than a torture device, the Mask itself causes no torture but the prisoner was chained to a post where he or she was tortured by other members. To prevent screaming of the wearer the mask would have a ball or some other device.
The naked was made to sit in the chair against those tasty spikes in the back- and arm-rests, while the wrists and ankles were shackled. To unfold the secrets the procedure may sometimes take more than 24 hours.
The Jerking was widely used in the trials of yesteryear and was believed to be a light type of torture. The arms of the accused were bound behind their back and a rope around their wrists was tied to a pulley. Victims were left hanging by their arms in this less than compromising position.
The Street Sweeper’s Daughter is an identical model of cruel ingenuity kept in the Tower of London. The victim’s head was locked into the top point of the frame, with their hands at the mid-point and legs at the lower end. The knees were forced up and the head was pushed down causing acute muscular cramps in the guts and forcing blood from the nose and ears.