victorian crime and punishment
Last updated 4 years ago
Thumbscrew :: A simple vice, sometimes with protruding studs on the interior surfaces. The victim's thumbs or fingers were placed in the vice and slowly crushed. The thumbscrew was also applied to crush prisoners' big toes. The crushing bars were sometimes lined with sharp metal points to puncture the nails and inflict greater pain in the nail beds. Larger, heavier devices based on the same design principle were applied to crush knees and elbows.
Victorian Murderesses (April 1995 edition) | Open Library
Professor Mary Hartman chose to write about accused murderesses not because she was interested in crime per se, but because public murder prosecutions reveal private documents and secrets otherwise hidden in Victorian times. The thirteen French and English women she discusses reflect a fascinating range of issues. Wonderful background reading for anyone interested in Victorian history or novels.