1. Republican Marriage
Besides the guillotine and burning at the stake, this act of torture was employed by Jean-Baptiste Carrier during the French Revolution. It involved binding naked males and females together and then throwing them into icy waters to drown. When water was unavailable, they would just be run through with swords or bayonets. This was the preferred method used to execute nuns and priests during that time.
2. Crocodile Shears
If you attempted to assassinate the king, this iron pincer was heated red-hot before being used to clamp down on the victim’s appendages and tearing them from their bodies.
4. Breast Ripper
Women may have been subjected to many of the mentioned torture techniques but this one is especially designed and custom made for them. Used to cause major blood loss, the claws, which were often red hot, would be placed on the exposed breasts as the spikes penetrated beneath the skin. It would then be pulled or jerked causing large chunks of flesh to come off with it.
5. Cement Shoes
The trademark way of the American Mafia was to put the feet of the enemy in wet cement, let it dry off and then throw the enemy in a water body.
7. The Chair of Torture
Also known as the Judas Chair, it was a terrible, intimidating torture device that was added to dungeons in the Middle Ages. It is surprising to learn that this method was employed as early as the 1800s in Europe. This chair was layered with 500 to 1,500 spikes on every surface with tight straps to restrain its victim. Made of iron, it can also contain spaces for heating elements beneath the seat. It was often used to scare people into giving confessions as they watched others being tortured on the device.
8. Rat Torture
If one were to be in an enclosure it would be no less torture but this one takes the cake. A rat cage full of rats would be fastened on to you with the door between you and the rats’ freedom. They would naturally gnaw at your insides and get free at any cost!
10. Tongue Tearer
The tongue tearer looked like an oversized pair of scissors. A device called the mouth opener would keep the victim’s mouth open while the tearer would tear the victim’s tongue outside from within the mouth. Gruesome!
11. The Rack
This torture device was made out of a wooden frame with two ropes fixed to the bottom and the other two tied into the handle on top. Once the victim was bound and placed on top of the rack, the torturer would proceed to turn the handle. They would begin by dislocating the limbs and only stop when the limbs were torn off the body.
It was often considered the most humane method of execution. The head used to be severed instantly and hence it was almost a painless procedure.
14. Rope Torture
A rope is the easiest to use of all the torture devices since it is easy to find and can easily be fashioned to inflict a number of terrible retributions. You could hang a person and tie them up in a public place where they wouldn’t be able to defend themselves from attacks. It could be fashioned to restrain the victim’s limbs while attaching the other end to horses who would them be made to run, consequently severing the limbs.
This one came in innumerable variations. The ‘pillwinks’ worked the same anyhow. They were designed to crush the fingers, toes, knees and even elbows. There was the head crusher too!
17. Coffin Torture
vorite out of all the possible techniques of torture in the middle ages. The torturers would first place their victim inside a metal cage the size of a coffin and hung them on a tree or gallows till they died.
19. Iron Maiden
This torture device consisted of an iron cabinet with a hinged front and spike-covered interior, sufficient enough to enclose a human being. Once the victim got inside, they would not be able to move at all because of all the iron spikes poking their bodies (piercing).
20. Lead Sprinkler
The sprinkler was usually filled with boiling water or molten lead, silver or boiling oil. Victims were tortured by pouring the contents of the sprinkler over the victims’ naked bodies.
22. The Judas Cradle
This one is related to impalement and very closely too! This method of execution entailed having the victim sit on the pyramid-shaped cradle, after which they would be forced down on it by ropes with the intent of stretching the victim’s orifice over a long period of time, slowly impaling them. It didn’t end there. The victim was usually naked and the device was rarely washed. So if the torture did not kill you, the infection contracted from it would.
This method was used in ancient times but it is surprising that it continues to be employed in a few countries even today. It’s one of the most widely known methods of execution because of the crucifixion of Christ. It is a deliberately slow and painful execution where the condemned person is tied or nailed to a large wooden cross and left to hang until they die, which usually takes days.
25. Neck Torture
One of history’s worst tortures which would humiliate you till you passed and cause unimaginable pain also. A wooden or metal device would be attached to your neck and you wouldn’t be able to lie down, eat, or lower your head for days!
26. Heretics Fork
This had been one dangerous torture device. It consisted of a metal piece with two opposed bi-pronged forks attached to belt or strap. While one end of this device would go under the chin, the other end would go under the sternum. The strap would do the fastening and the victim would be hanged to the ceiling so they couldn’t sleep. If their heads dropped, the prongs would pierce their throat and chest.
This was the favorite method of execution of Vlad the impaler. In 15th century Romania; the victim was forced to sit on a sharp and thick pole. Immediately the pole would be raised upright. The victim would then be only able to slide on the pole. It took three whole days before the victim would pass. It has been observed that the impaler had over 20,000 victims.
29. The Brazen Bull
Another name of the brazen bull was the Sicilian bull. It comes from ancient Greece. The victim would be placed inside the bull and a fire set underneath it until the metal became literally yellow as it was heated. One can well imagine the plight of the person when they would be slowly roasted to death. They would emanate cries which were made to sound like the bull bellowing (the bulls were trained for that).