Published On: Tue, Jun 21st,

Top 10 Most Brutal Torture Techniques

The Middle Ages were not a good era to live in by our comfortable modern values. Majority of individuals were poor, they suffered from illness, and their independence was possessed by wealthy landlords. And if you were involved in a crime being unable to pay a fine, you could expect your hand to be chopped off or your lips and tongue cut out.

It is a misperception that torture was very common at that time, unless if the authorities required you to confess something! These were the golden times of torture techniques and tools that caused horrible pain. Presently “sanctioned” torture methods are designed to cause emotional or psychological distress, with some restricted physical suffering. But the devices utilized in the Middle Ages were really terrifying to see, and there were many people in those times that relished conjuring the most horrible devices.

1. Impalement

The impalement was the most terrifying technique and that is why we have ranked it at top of our list. In this technique of torture, the victim was simply impaled by forcing him to take a seat on a thick and sharp pole. The pole was then elevated upright and which made the target to slide down the pole due to his/her own weight.
Normally, the pole would arise through the sternum to keep its tip under the chin preventing further sliding. It used to take almost 3 days to kill the victim. Vlad The Impaler had been the most infamous ruler who did this to almost 20,000 – 300,000 people. He used to enjoy his meal while viewing impalements.

2. Coffin Torture

Number 2 on our list is The Coffin Torture. This device was dreaded in the Middle Ages, and is frequently seen in movies depicting those times. The victim was positioned inside a metal cage coarsely constructed in the structure of a human body. Sometimes, overweight individuals were forced to be placed into a smaller device, or sometimes the coffin was made somewhat larger than a victim’s body in order to bring him more distress. The cage was then suspended from a gallows or a tree.
Serious wrongdoings, like blasphemy or heresy, were treated by death inside the coffin where the culprits were positioned under the sun permitting animals or birds to eat victim’s flesh. At times, spectators would throw stones or other stuffs in order to increase the discomfort further.

3. Judas Cradle

It might be a little less brutal than impalement but still it is highly horrific. In this method, victim’s vagina or anus was placed over the tip of the pyramid-shaped cradle and then pulled down with the help of ropes. The deliberated effort was to stretch the opening over a long time period, or to impale slowly.
Normally, the victim was normally naked, accumulating to the overall disgrace of the torture and occasionally weights were attached to the legs in order to upsurge the pain and rush death. This torture used to last from some hours to complete days. Some other facts reveal that the device was seldom washed, which caused the victim to plague with a hurting infection.

4. The Breast Ripper

As the name suggests, this device was used to torture women specifically. This horrible device was used to rip breasts, in order to impose pain, blood loss and disfigurement of their breasts. It was normally used against women guilty of conducting adultery or abortions.
The red hot claws were usually placed on victim’s bare breasts, with the spikes piercing to attain a powerful grip. They were then dragged to shred or rip off the breasts. If the woman wasn’t slaughtered she would be blemished for life because of not having her breasts any more.
A common type of this ripper was recognized as “The Spider,” which is a similar device you can see in this picture. In this method, the device was suspended from the wall and the woman’s breasts were positioned to the claws. The victim woman was then pulled away by the torturer from the wall, mutilating or removing them. This shameful and brutal punishment often resulted in death.

5. The Rack

The Rack was commonly considered to be the most throbbing form of medieval suffering. It comprised of a wooden frame normally with 2 ropes attached to the bottom and another 2 attached to a handle at top. As the handle was turned by the torturer, the ropes would wrench the victim’s arms, finally disordering bones with a loud crack. Keep turning the handles further, would tear some of the limbs right off the victim’s body.
A new form of rack was introduced in the later times. Spikes were introduced in the Rack which entered the victim’s back when he was forced to lie on it. As the limbs were dragged apart, same happened with the spinal cord, up surging the physical pain, as well as the psychological pain of knowing that, even victim survived, he/she would lack any kind of mobility forever.

6. The Breaking Wheel

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This device always killed its victim but the process was very slow. The limbs of victim were tied with the spokes of a huge wooden wheel. The wheel was then gradually rotated while the intimidator shattered the victims’ limbs using an iron hammer, cracking them in many places.
After breaking all of his bones, he was left on the wheel helpless. Occasionally, they used to place the wheel at a high place in order to allow the birds to eat the victim’s flesh. The victim could die over 2-3 days because of dehydration.

7. The Pear of Anguish

Number 7 on our list is the pear of Anguish. This brutal tool was used to torture women guilty of abortions, homosexuality and blasphemy. The pear-shaped device was introduced into one of the victim’s openings: the mouth for blasphemers and liars, the anus for homosexuals and the vagina for women.
The instrument comprised of 4 leaves that gradually detached from each other as the top screw was turned by the torturer. The device would rip the skin or expand to injure the victim’s orifice. It could break or disrupt the jawbones.

8. The Head Crusher

Number 8 on our list is head crusher. It was a widely recognized torture method, mainly used by the Spanish Inquisition. In this method, the head was placed underneath an upper cap while the chin over a bottom bar. The torturer gradually turned the screw. It slowly compressed the head, 1st crushing the teeth into jaw, leading to a slow death with extreme pain. This device was a perfect tool to extract confessions

9. Saw Torture

Among the many common devices for torture, saws stand at the top of the list. They were freely found in majority of houses and there were no need of any complex devices. It was an inexpensive way to torture and kill a victim guilty of theft, blasphemy, murder, adultery, and witchery. Some of the victims were cut entirely in half while majority of them were cut only to their abdomen in order to extend the pain and time to die.

10. Knee Splitter

Finally, the last on our list is the Knee Splitter. This instrument comprised of sharp spikes on its both sides. The claws were used to grip the knees, while the torturer used to turn the hand resulting tin squeezing against each other penetrating and mutilating the knee skin and bones. Though the device seldom led to death, but it was used to make the knee entirely useless. The device was also placed on other parts of body like arms and elbows.


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