The pillory is a device made of a wooden or metal framework erected on a post, with holes for securing the head and hands, formerly used for punishment by public humiliation and often further physical abuse.The pillory is related to the stocks.
The word is documented in English since 1274 (attested in Anglo-Latin from c. 1189), and stems from Old French pellori (1168; modern French pilori, see below), itself from medieval Latin pilloria, of uncertain origin, perhaps a diminutive of Latin pila 'pillar, stone barrier'.
Rather like the lesser punishment called the stocks, the pillory consisted of hinged wooden boards forming holes through which the head and/or various limbs were inserted; then the boards were locked together to secure the captive. Pillories were set up to hold people in marketplaces, crossroads, and other public places. [ citation needed ]They were often placed on platforms to increase public visibility of the person. Often a placard detailing the crime was placed nearby; these punishments generally lasted only a few hours.
In being forced to bend forward and stick their head and hands out in front of them, offenders in the pillory would have been extremely uncomfortable during their punishment. However, the main purpose in putting criminals in the pillory was to humiliate them publicly. On discovering that the pillory was occupied, people would excitedly gather in the marketplace to taunt, tease and laugh at the offender on display.[ citation needed ]
Those who gathered to watch the punishment typically wanted to make the offender's experience as unpleasant as possible. In addition to being jeered and mocked, those in the pillory might be pelted with rotten food, mud, offal, dead animals, and animal excrement. Sometimes people were killed or maimed in the pillory because crowds could get too violent and pelt the offender with stones, bricks and other dangerous objects.However, when Daniel Defoe was sentenced to the pillory in 1703 for seditious libel, he was regarded as a hero by the crowd and was pelted with flowers.
The criminal could also be sentenced to further punishments while in the pillory: humiliation by shaving off some or all hair or regular corporal punishment(s), notably flagellation (the pillory serving as the "whipping post") or even permanent mutilation such as branding or having an ear cut off (cropping), as in the case of John Bastwick.
In Protestant cultures (such as in the Scandinavian countries), the pillory would be the worldly part of a church punishment. The delinquent would therefore first serve the ecclesiastical part of his punishment on the pillory bench in the church itself, and then be handed to the worldly authorities to be bound to the Skampåle (literally: "Shame Pole") for public humiliation.
In 1816, use of the pillory was restricted in England to punishment for perjury or subornation.The pillory was formally abolished as a form of punishment in England and Wales in 1837, after Lord John Russell had said "I shall likewise propose to bring in a Bill to abolish the punishment of the pillory—a punishment which is never inflicted." However, the stocks remained in use, though extremely infrequently, until 1872. The last person to be pilloried in England was Peter James Bossy, who was convicted of "wilful and corrupt perjury" in 1830. He was offered the choice of seven years' penal transportation or one hour in the pillory, and chose the latter.
In France, time in the "pilori" was usually limited to two hours. It was replaced in 1789 by "exposition", and abolished in 1832.Two types of devices were used:
Like other permanent apparatus for physical punishment, the pillory was often placed prominently and constructed more elaborately than necessary. It served as a symbol of the power of the judicial authorities, and its continual presence was seen as a deterrent, like permanent gallows for authorities endowed with high justice.
In Portugal, it is called Pelourinho, and there are monuments of great importance because they are known since the Roman times.Usually, they are located on the main square of the town, and/or in front of a major church or a palace. They are made of stone with a column and the top carved. Pelourinhos are considered major local monuments, several clearly bearing the coat of arms of a king or queen. The same is true of its former colonies, notably in Brazil (in its former capital, Salvador, the whole old quarter is known as Pelourinho) and Africa (e.g. Cape Verde's old capital, Cidade Velha), always as symbols of royal power. In Spain, the device was called picota.
The pillory was also in common use in other western countries and colonies, and similar devices were used in other, non-Western cultures. According to one source, the pillory was abolished as a form of punishment in the United States in 1839,but this cannot be entirely true because it was clearly in use in Delaware as recently as 1901. Governor Preston Lea finally signed a bill to abolish the pillory in Delaware in March 1905.
Punishment by whipping-post remained on the books in Delaware until 1972, when it became the last state to abolish it.Delaware was the last state to sentence someone to whipping in 1963; however, the sentence was commuted. The last whipping in Delaware was in 1952.
There was a variant (rather of the stocks type), called a barrel pillory, or Spanish mantle, used to punish drunks, which is reported in England and among its troops. It fitted over the entire body, with the head sticking out from a hole in the top. The criminal is put in either an enclosed barrel, forcing him to kneel in his own filth, or an open barrel, also known as "barrel shirt" or "drunkards collar" after the punishable crime, leaving him to roam about town or military camp and be ridiculed and scorned.
Although a pillory, by its physical nature, could double as a whipping post to tie a criminal down for public flagellation (as used to be the case in many German sentences to staupenschlag ), the two as such are separate punishments: the pillory is a sentence to public humiliation, whipping is an essentially painful corporal punishment. The combination of the pillory and the whipping post was one of the various punishments the Puritans of the Massachusetts Bay Colony applied to enforce religious and intellectual comformity on the whole community.Sometimes a single structure was built with separate locations for the two punishments, with a whipping post on the lower level and a pillory above (see image at right).
When permanently present in sight of prisoners, whipping posts were thought to act as a deterrent against bad behaviour, especially when each prisoner had been subjected to a "welcome beating" on arrival, as in 18th-century Waldheim in Saxony (12, 18 or 24 whip lashes on the bare posterior tied to a pole in the castle courtyard, or by birch rod over the "bock", a bench in the corner).[ citation needed ] Still a different penal use of such constructions is to tie the criminal down, possibly after a beating, to expose him for a long time to the elements, usually without food and drink, even to the point of starvation.[ citation needed ]
While the pillory has left common use, the image remains preserved in the figurative use, which has become the dominant one, of the verb "to pillory" (attested in English since 1699),meaning "to expose to public ridicule, scorn and abuse", or more generally to humiliate before witnesses.
Corresponding expressions exist in other languages, e.g., clouer au pilori "to nail to the pillory" in French, or mettere alla gogna in Italian, or poner en la picota in Spanish. In Dutch it's aan de schandpaal nagelen or aan de kaak stellen, placing even greater emphasis on the predominantly humiliating character as the Dutch word for pillory, schandpaal, literally meaning "pole of shame".
Capital punishment, also known as the death penalty, is a state-sanctioned practice of killing a person as a punishment for a crime. The sentence ordering that an offender is to be punished in such a manner is known as a death sentence, and the act of carrying out the sentence is known as an execution. A prisoner who has been sentenced to death and awaits execution is condemned and is commonly referred to as being "on death row".
A corporal punishment or a physical punishment is a punishment which is intended to cause physical pain to a person. When it is inflicted on minors, especially in home and school settings, its methods may include spanking or paddling. When it is inflicted on adults, it may be inflicted on prisoners and slaves.
Flagellation, flogging or whipping is the act of beating the human body with special implements such as whips, rods, switches, the cat o' nine tails, the sjambok, the knout, etc. Typically, flogging has been imposed on an unwilling subject as a punishment; however, it can also be submitted to willingly and even done by oneself in sadomasochistic or religious contexts.
In criminal justice, particularly in North America, correction, corrections, and correctional, are umbrella terms describing a variety of functions typically carried out by government agencies, and involving the punishment, treatment, and supervision of persons who have been convicted of crimes. These functions commonly include imprisonment, parole, and probation. A typical correctional institution is a prison. A correctional system, also known as a penal system, thus refers to a network of agencies that administer a jurisdiction's prisons, and community-based programs like parole, and probation boards. This system is part of the larger criminal justice system, which additionally includes police, prosecution and courts. Jurisdictions throughout Canada and the US have ministries or departments, respectively, of corrections, correctional services, or similarly-named agencies.
Capital punishment in the United Kingdom predates the formation of the UK, having been used within the British Isles from ancient times until the second half of the 20th century. The last executions in the United Kingdom were by hanging, and took place in 1964; capital punishment for murder was suspended in 1965 and finally abolished in 1969. Although unused, the death penalty remained a legally defined punishment for certain offences such as treason until it was completely abolished in 1998; the last execution for treason took place in 1946. In 2004 the 13th Protocol to the European Convention on Human Rights became binding on the United Kingdom; it prohibits the restoration of the death penalty as long as the UK is a party to the convention.
Stocks are feet restraining devices that were used as a form of corporal punishment and public humiliation.
Caning is a form of corporal punishment consisting of a number of hits with a single cane usually made of rattan, generally applied to the offender's bare or clothed buttocks or hands. Caning on the knuckles or shoulders is much less common. Caning can also be applied to the soles of the feet. The size and flexibility of the cane and the mode of application, as well as the number of the strokes, vary greatly—from a couple of light strokes with a small cane across the seat of a junior schoolboy's trousers, to up to 24 very hard, wounding cuts on the bare buttocks with a large, heavy, soaked rattan as a judicial punishment in some Southeast Asian countries.
Public humiliation or public shaming is a form of punishment whose main feature is dishonoring or disgracing a person, usually an offender or a prisoner, especially in a public place. It was regularly used as a form of judicially sanctioned punishment in previous centuries, and is still practiced by different means in the modern era.
Cucking stools or ducking stools were chairs formerly used for punishment of disorderly women, scolds, and dishonest tradesmen in England, Scotland, and elsewhere. The cucking-stool was a form of wymen pine, or "women's punishment," as referred to in Langland's Piers Plowman (1378). They were instruments of public humiliation and censure both primarily for the offense of scolding or backbiting and less often for sexual offences like bearing an illegitimate child or prostitution.
Prison reform is the attempt to improve conditions inside prisons, improve the effectiveness of a penal system, or implement alternatives to incarceration. It also focuses on ensuring the reinstatement of those whose lives are impacted by crimes.
Curious Punishments of Bygone Days is a history book published in 1896. It was written by Alice Morse Earle and printed by Herbert S. Stone & Company. Earle was a historian of Colonial America, and she writes in her introduction:
In ransacking old court records, newspapers, diaries and letters for the historic foundation of the books which I have written on colonial history, I have found and noted much of interest that has not been used or referred to in any of those books. An accumulation of notes on old-time laws, punishments and penalties has evoked this volume.
The Vandalism Act 1966 is a statute of the Parliament of Singapore that criminalizes a number of different acts done in relation to public and private property, namely, stealing, destroying or damaging public property; and, without the property owner's written consent, writing, drawing, painting, marking or inscribing on property; affixing posters, placards, etc., to the property; and suspending or displaying on or from the property any flag, banner, etc.
Caning is used as a form of corporal punishment in Malaysia. It can be divided into at least four contexts: judicial/prison, school, domestic, and sharia/syariah. Of these, the first is largely a legacy of British colonial rule in the territories that are now part of Malaysia, particularly Malaya. Similar forms of corporal punishment are also used in some other former British colonies, including two of Malaysia's neighbouring countries, Singapore and Brunei.
Capital punishment was used from the creation of the modern Serbian state in 1804. On 26 February 2002, the Serbian Parliament adopted amendments striking the death penalty from the Criminal Code. The last execution, by shooting, took place on 14 February 1992, and the last death sentences were pronounced in 2001. Serbia is bound by the following international conventions prohibiting capital punishment : The Second Optional Protocol to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, and Protocols No. 6 and No. 13 to the European Convention on Human Rights. According to Article 24 of the Serbian constitution (2006): „Human life is inviolable. There shall be no death penalty in the Republic of Serbia“.
Judicial corporal punishment (JCP) is the infliction of corporal punishment as a result of a sentence imposed on an offender by a court of law. The punishments include caning, bastinado, birching, whipping, or strapping. The practice was once commonplace in many countries, but over time it has been abolished in most countries, although still remaining a form of legal punishment in some countries including a number of former British colonies and Muslim-majority states.
Capital punishment is legal in Tonga, but has not been imposed since 1982. The country's lack of executions puts it into the category of abolitionist in practice, where it retains the death penalty in law but has had a formal or informal moratorium for at least ten years. Tonga's low rate of murder convictions form part of the reason for the lack of executions, as well as its courts’ apparent unwillingness to impose the penalty unless it appears absolutely necessary to do so.
The Copenhagen Stocks House was a prison in Copenhagen, Denmark, named for the stocks which used to be located at its premises. Originally a military prison, it was opened to civilian prisoners in 1741. The building was located on Øster Voldgade, opposite the present day National Gallery.
Kyrkoplikt was a historical form of punishment, practiced in Sweden-Finland. It was a form of public humiliation in which the condemned was made to confess and repent of their crime before being rehabilitated and spared further punishments. It could be sentenced by the church or by a secular court, and performed by the church. The concept of "church duty" thus does not have anything to do with an obligation to go to church. Instead, the name for such an obligation is kyrkogångsplikt, literally 'church attendance obligation'.
Caning is used as a form of judicial corporal punishment in Brunei. This practice is heavily influenced by Brunei's history as a British protectorate from 1888 to 1984. Similar forms of corporal punishment are also used in two of Brunei's neighbouring countries, Singapore and Malaysia, which are themselves former British colonies.
The legality of corporal punishment of children varies by country. Corporal punishment of minor children by parents or adult guardians, which is intended to cause physical pain, has been traditionally legal in nearly all countries unless explicitly outlawed. According to a 2014 estimate by Human Rights Watch, "Ninety percent of the world's children live in countries where corporal punishment and other physical violence against children is still legal". Many countries' laws provide for a defence of "reasonable chastisement" against charges of assault and other crimes for parents using corporal punishment. This defence is ultimately derived from English law. As of 2022, only three of seven G7 members including seven of the 20 G20 member states have banned the use of corporal punishment against children.