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Crime and Punishments in Medieval Europe
Transcript of Crime and Punishments in Medieval Europe
- Nagging wives were tied to a ducking stool and ducked three times into the river.
- Gossiping women were made to wear the Scold's Bridle.
- Bakers who shortchanged their customers were dragged through the streets on a sledge with a loaf of bread tied around their necks.
- Minor crimes were usually punishable by being put in the stocks.
- Punishments for stealing or cheating were more harsh and included whipping or mutilation .
- Penalty for murder or treason was public execution or beheaded or bricked up behind a wall until starved to death.
If someone was breaking the law, there were no police forces in medieval times to control crime. Villagers were expected to "hue and cry" and chase after the people who broke the law, and is the person escaped the lord would punish the villagers.
People would make a curfew to keep people of the streets at night to limit the number of crimes. This meant that people would have to stay in their homes from about 8:00pm or 9:00pm. The middle ages was a time of severe punishment, and harsh torture that for crimes today would seem not a big deal. People often lived in fear thinking they were going to be the next victim. People often had their right hand cut off, people were beaten, burned alive, stretched
on a rack and women committing adultery were drowned.
People believed that witches were the devils followers and that they used powers for people to suffer.People would blame the witches for Natural Disasters, Famine, Plague, Drought and even still birth. People would accuse others of witchcraft because of jealousy or revenge. There would be large charges for witchcraft for example you would be burned alive.
Methods of torture used in Medieval Europe
- Ripping out teeth and nails
- Bone breaking
- Limb removal
- Water torture: Forced to drink water and having someone jump on your stomach forcing water to rise and you to choke.