From the dreaded rack to the head crusher, take a look at the most grueling and painful torture devices of the Middle Ages.
Torture Devices Of The Middle Ages: The Saw
Before the saw was given its perfunctory role to slice through wood and thick material, it was used to slice through humans for torture or execution. The victim would be held upside down, allowing the blood to rush to their head, and then the torturer would slowly start slicing them between their legs.
With the blood contained in the head, the victim would remain conscious throughout most of the slicing, often only passing out or dying when the saw hit their mid-section.
Medieval Torture Devices: Breast Ripper Or The Spider
For those women who were accused or adultery, abortion or any other crime, they were subjected to the painful torture of the breast ripper or the spider.
As the name suggests, the claw-like device, which ended in spikes, was heated and then used to rip off or shred a woman’s breasts. The spider was a variant, attached to a wall instead of clamped onto a woman’s breast by a torturer.
The Ultimate Torture Devices: The Rack
Probably the most commonly know torture device from the Middle Ages, the rack was a wooden platform, with rollers at both ends. The victim’s hands and feet were tied to each end and the rollers would be turned, stretching the victim’s body to uncomfortable lengths.
Painful Torture Devices: Knee Splitter
Used frequently during the Spanish Inquisition, the knee splitter, naturally, was used to split a victims knee.
The device was built from two spiked wood blocks with a screw at the back, and was clamped on the front and back of the knee. One turn of the screw and, hey presto, a knee was easily, and painfully, crippled. It was also used on other parts of the body.