Stocks

  • Torture Thru The Age
  • 1 min

By Crusader1307

Seen in most European Nations, the Stocks were very popular in terms of physical punishments (and to some lesser degree, torture). This practice goes back to biblical times in terms of age. Construction was very simple. Two pieces of wood were used, with a large center opening in the center and smaller ones (positioned adjacent to the center hole – for the hands). A support frame was built which allowed the top portion to be lifted or removed. A victim's head and hands were placed into the holes. When the top portion was re-installed and locked – the victim was immobilized. More cruel (depending on which version was built), the victim was made to stand, sit or be placed on their stomach. Stocks were used to hold an accused awaiting trial. Often, the Public was encouraged to throw rotten food, rocks and even human or animal feces. Still too, the practice of “cropping” (or cutting off one's ears), was applied as well.

 

Again, when death was the goal, the victim was given no food, water or shelter. Death would come very quickly (especially in Winter). The Stocks made their way to Colonial America with much popularity. In fact, up to the 1980s in some US Northeastern States, the punishment was STILL on “the books” (although it had not been used past the early 19th Century).