If you think the world is a screwed up place now, then you have no idea how cruel and insane parts of the world used to be. Back in Medieval times, there were wars, crusades, kings and assassinations. All of which required a certain level of violence. People needed a way to punish prisoners or extract confessions, so the dark age torturers and executioners thought of these absolutely terrifying torture devices. You have may seen some of these awful tools in movies and thought,” This couldn’t possibly be real…” (You’d be wrong.)
1.) The Judas Cradle: This torture could last days or hours. A victim would sit on this pyramid-shaped seat, with their legs tied together. If they moved one leg, the other would move as well, causing even more pain.
2.) Coffin Torture: Victims could be kept in cages or coffins for a length of time, depending on the crime. Blasphemy would earn them death.
3.) Brazen Bull: A person would be placed inside this bull and be slowly burned to death. The Greeks even invented a system of tubes so that the screams from inside would sound like an ox.
4.) Scold’s Bridle: Primarily used on women, this iron muzzle had a bit that was usually covered in spikes. That way, if the victim tried to talk they would be in severe pain.
5.) Rack Torture: A person would be attached to the rack and the torturer would turn the handle, causing ropes to pull in opposite directions on their hands and legs. Eventually, their bones would become dislocated … and then torn apart.
6.) Chair of Torture: There are many variants on this chair, but all include spikes covering the back, arms, seat and leg rests of the chair. To keep the victim from moving, they would be tied or pinned to this device.
7.) Pear of Anguish: This instrument was inserted into a victim’s orifice. Then, a screw would be turned and the four “leaves” of the pear open up and mutilate the victim.
9.) Breast Ripper: This was used on women, mainly those accused of forcing a miscarriage or adultery. The claws would either be hot or cold, and clenched around a woman’s breast. If she wasn’t killed, she’d be scarred for life.
10.) Head Crusher: This was widely used during the Middle Ages. A person’s chin would be placed on the bottom bar and the head under the cap. As the handle was turned, the cap would slowly be pressed to the bar, until the head was crushed.
11.) Saws: Saws were widely used as torture devices, as these tools were found in almost any house. Hanging a person upside down and sawing through them, lest they confess, was gory but affective.
12.) The Iron Maiden: Some dispute the legitimacy of this torture device, but if it was real, a victim would be tied inside this container and the doors were shut. The spikes wouldn’t penetrate any vital organs so it could take hours or days for death to occur.
13.) Spanish Tickler: This simple instrument would tear a victim’s skin apart, neither bones nor muscles were spaced. The tickler, indeed.
14.) Garrotte Torture: This device would slowly crush a victim’s neck, causing death from asphyxia.
15.) Flagellation Whipping: This was extremely common in Rome, but still used during the Middle Ages.
16.) Pillory Torture: This was meant to publicly humiliate the victim and sometimes the crowds would make this torture lethal. Many times the victim would also be whipped.
17.) Breaking Wheel: A victim’s limbs would be tied to the spokes and the wheel would slowly revolve. As it turned, a torturer would bludgeon the victim. Once their bones were broken, they would be left on the wheel to die.
18.) Thumbscrews: Fingers were placed inside this instrument and slowly crushed as a torturer would turn the handle.
19.) Heretics Fork: This device was a metal rod with a fork at each end. One fork would be placed under the chin and the other at the upper chest. A collar would support the fork, forcing the victim to hold their head erect, or else they’d experience pain.
20.) Knee Splitter: This could be used on any limb or joint, and the spikes would slowly crush whatever was put inside the splitter.
21.) Crocodile Shears: These were saved for those who attempted to assassinate the king. This was a tube that contained numerous spikes on each end. A victim’s fingers or penis would be placed inside and then mutilated.
(H/T Ebaumsworld) Be happy that you live in a time and place where this level of torture is almost unheard of. Unspeakable acts and torture still happen to many people around the world, but at least you’re safe from some of these archaic and terrible torture devices. Share this chill-inducing gallery with others.