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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 Punishment, commonly, is the imposition of an undesirable or unpleasant outcome upon a group or individual, meted out by an authority In the fields of sociology Sociology is the study of society, human social behaviour, patterns of soci ...

punishment
by
public humiliation Public humiliation or public shaming is a form of punishment , England Punishment, commonly, is the imposition of an undesirable or suffering, unpleasant outcome upon a group or individual, meted out by an authority In the fields of sociology ...
and often further physical abuse. The pillory is related to the
stocks Stocks are feet restraining devices that were used as a form of and . Form and application The stocks, , and pranger each consist of large wooden boards with hinges; however, the stocks are distinguished by their restraint of the feet. The s ...

stocks
.


Etymology

The word is documented in English since 1274 (attested in Anglo-Latin from ), and stems from
Old French Old French (, , ; Modern French French ( or ) is a Romance language The Romance languages, less commonly Latin or Neo-Latin languages, are the modern languages that evolved from Vulgar Latin Vulgar Latin, also known as Popular o ...
(1168;
modern French French ( or ) is a Romance language The Romance languages, less commonly Latin or Neo-Latin languages, are the modern languages that evolved from Vulgar Latin Vulgar Latin, also known as Popular or Colloquial Latin is a range of info ...

modern French
, see below), itself from
medieval Latin Medieval Latin was the form of Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language A classical language is a language A language is a structured system of communication Communication (from Latin ''communicare'', meaning "to share ...
, of uncertain origin, perhaps a diminutive of Latin 'pillar, stone barrier'.


Description

Rather like the lesser punishment called the
stocks Stocks are feet restraining devices that were used as a form of and . Form and application The stocks, , and pranger each consist of large wooden boards with hinges; however, the stocks are distinguished by their restraint of the feet. The s ...

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. 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. 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 Daniel Defoe (; born Daniel Foe; c. 1660 – 24 April 1731) was an English writer, trader, journalist, pamphleteer and spy. He is most famous for his novel ''Robinson Crusoe'', published in 1719, which is claimed to be second only to the Bible i ...

Daniel Defoe
was sentenced to the pillory in 1703 for
seditious libel Sedition is overt conduct, such as speech Speech is human vocal communication using language. Each language uses Phonetics, phonetic combinations of vowel and consonant sounds that form the sound of its words (that is, all English words sound ...
, 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 A corporal punishment or a physical punishment is a punishment The old village stocks in Chapeltown, Lancashire, England Punishment, commonly, is the imposition of an undesirable or suffering, unpleasant outcome upon a group or individual, ...
(s), notably
flagellation Flagellation (Latin ''flagellum'', "whip"), flogging or whipping is the act of beating the human body with special implements such as whip File:Cat o' nine.JPG, upright=1.35, A leather cat o' nine tails pictured with a U.S dollar bill for ...
(the pillory serving as the "whipping post") or even permanent mutilation such as
branding Branding may refer to: Physical markings * Making a mark, typically by charring: ** Wood branding, permanently marking, by way of heat, typically of wood (also applied to plastic, cork, leather, etc.) ** Livestock branding, the marking of animals t ...
or having an ear cut off (
croppingCropping refers to chopping off part of something. * Image cropping * Docking of animals' tails and ears It may also mean: * Crop farming {{disambig ...
), as in the case of
John Bastwick John Bastwick (1593–1654) was an English Puritan The Puritans were English Protestants in the 16th and 17th centuries who sought to purify the Church of England of Roman Catholic practices, maintaining that the Church of England had not bee ...
. In Protestant cultures (such as in the
Scandinavian countries Scandinavia, Sami: ''Skadesi-suolu''/''Skađsuâl'' ( ) is a subregion in Northern Europe Northern Europe is a loosely defined Geography, geographical and cultural region in Europe. Narrower definitions may describe Northern Europe as b ...

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.


Uses

In 1816, use of the pillory was restricted in England to punishment for
perjury Perjury is the intentional act of swearing a false oath or falsifying an Affirmation in law, affirmation to tell the truth, whether spoken or in writing, concerning matters material to an official proceeding."Perjury The act or an instance of a ...
or subornation. The pillory was formally abolished as a form of punishment in England and Wales in 1837, after
Lord John Russell John Russell, 1st Earl Russell, (18 August 1792 – 28 May 1878), known by his courtesy title Courtesy (from the word ''courteis'', from the 12th century) is gentle politeness and courtly manners. In the Middle Ages In the his ...

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 Stocks are feet restraining devices that were used as a form of and . Form and application The stocks, , and pranger each consist of large wooden boards with hinges; however, the stocks are distinguished by their restraint of the feet. The s ...

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 Penal transportation or transportation was the relocation of convict A convict is "a person found guilty Guilty or The Guilty may refer to: * Guilt (emotion), an experience that occurs when a person believes they have violated a moral st ...
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: * The ''poteau'' (literally: "post" or "pole") was a simple post, often with a board around only the neck, and was synonymous with the mode of punishment. This was the same as the ''schandpaal'' ("shamepole") in Dutch. The ''carcan'', an iron ring around the neck to tie a prisoner to such a post, was the name of a similar punishment that was abolished in 1832. A criminal convicted to serve time in a prison or galleys would, prior to his incarceration, be attached for two to six hours (depending on whether he was convicted to prison or the galleys) to the ''carcan'', with his name, crime and sentence written on a board over his head. * A permanent small tower, the upper floor of which had a ring made of wood or iron with holes for the victim's head and arms, which was often on a turntable to expose the condemned to all parts of the crowd. 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 A gallows (or scaffold) is a frame or elevated beam, typically wooden, from which objects can be suspended (i.e., hung) or "weighed". Gallows were thus widely used to suspend public weighing scales for large and heavy objects such as sacks of g ...
for authorities endowed with
high justice ''High Justice'' is a 1974 collection of science fiction File:Imagination 195808.jpg, Space exploration, as predicted in August 1958 in the science fiction magazine ''Imagination (magazine), Imagination.'' Science fiction (sometimes shortened ...
. In
Portugal Portugal, officially the Portuguese Republic ( pt, República Portuguesa, links=yes ), is a country A country is a distinct territorial body or political entity A polity is an identifiable political entity—any group of people who ...

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 Salvador, meaning "salvation" (or "saviour") in Catalan, Spanish, and Portuguese may refer to: * Salvador (name) Arts, entertainment, and media Music *Salvador (band), a Christian band that plays both English and Spanish music **Salvador (Salvado ...

Salvador
, the whole old quarter is known as Pelourinho) and Africa (e.g. Cape Verde's old capital,
Cidade Velha Cidade Velha ( Portuguese for "old city A city is a large human settlement.Goodall, B. (1987) ''The Penguin Dictionary of Human Geography''. London: Penguin.Kuper, A. and Kuper, J., eds (1996) ''The Social Science Encyclopedia''. 2nd edition. Lond ...

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 Delaware ( ) is a state in the Mid-Atlantic (United States), Mid-Atlantic region of the United States, bordering Maryland to its south and west; Pennsylvania to its north; and New Jersey and the Atlantic Ocean to its east. The state takes i ...
as recently as 1901. Governor 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.


Similar humiliation devices

There was a variant (rather of the
stocks Stocks are feet restraining devices that were used as a form of and . Form and application The stocks, , and pranger each consist of large wooden boards with hinges; however, the stocks are distinguished by their restraint of the feet. The s ...

stocks
type), called a , 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 Flagellation (Latin ''flagellum'', "whip"), flogging or whipping is the act of beating the human body with special implements such as whip File:Cat o' nine.JPG, upright=1.35, A leather cat o' nine tails pictured with a U.S dollar bill for ...
(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 Public humiliation or public shaming is a form of punishment , England Punishment, commonly, is the imposition of an undesirable or suffering, unpleasant outcome upon a group or individual, meted out by an authority In the fields of sociology ...
, whipping is an essentially painful
corporal punishment A corporal punishment or a physical punishment is a punishment The old village stocks in Chapeltown, Lancashire, England Punishment, commonly, is the imposition of an undesirable or suffering, unpleasant outcome upon a group or individual, ...
. 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 Birching is a form of corporal punishment with a birch rod, typically applied to the recipient's bare buttocks, although occasionally to the back and/or shoulders. Implement A birch rod (often shortened to "birch") is a bundle of leafless twi ...
over the "''bock''", a bench in the corner). 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.


Notable cases

* Peter Annet *
Thomas Cochrane, 10th Earl of Dundonald Thomas Cochrane, 10th Earl of Dundonald, Marquess of Maranhão, (14 December 1775 – 31 October 1860), styled Lord Cochrane between 1778 and 1831, was a British naval flag officer of the Royal Navy The Royal Navy (RN) is the United Ki ...

Thomas Cochrane, 10th Earl of Dundonald
*
Daniel Defoe Daniel Defoe (; born Daniel Foe; c. 1660 – 24 April 1731) was an English writer, trader, journalist, pamphleteer and spy. He is most famous for his novel ''Robinson Crusoe'', published in 1719, which is claimed to be second only to the Bible i ...
*
James Nayler James Nayler (or Naylor; 1618–1660) was an English Quaker Quakers, also called Friends, belong to a historically Protestant Protestantism is a form of Christianity that originated with the 16th-century Reformation, a movement against ...
* Elizabeth Needham *
Titus Oates Titus Oates (15 September 1649 – 12/13 July 1705) was an English priest who fabricated the " Popish Plot", a supposed Catholic The Catholic Church, also known as the Roman Catholic Church, is the largest Christian church, with 1.3&n ...

Titus Oates


Legacy

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),
Richard Bentley Richard Bentley FRS (; 27 January 1662 – 14 July 1742) was an English classical scholar, critic, and theologian. Considered the "founder of historical philology Philology is the study of language A language is a structured system ...

Richard Bentley
, ''Dissertation on the Epistles of Phalaris''; cited in the ''
Oxford English Dictionary The ''Oxford English Dictionary'' (''OED'') is the principal historical dictionary A historical dictionary or dictionary on historical principles is a dictionary which deals not only with the latterday meanings of words but also the historica ...
''
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".


See also

*
Cangue A cangue () or tcha is a device that was used for public humiliation Public humiliation or public shaming is a form of punishment , England Punishment, commonly, is the imposition of an undesirable or suffering, unpleasant outcome upon a group ...
*
Judicial corporal punishment Judicial corporal punishment (JCP) is the infliction of corporal punishment A corporal punishment or a physical punishment is a punishment The old village stocks in Chapeltown, Lancashire, England Punishment, commonly, is the impositi ...
*
Jougs The jougs, juggs, or joggs ( fro, joug, from Latin , a yoke) is a metal collar formerly used as an instrument of punishment in Scotland, the Netherlands and other countries. Purpose The jougs was an iron collar fastened by a short chain to a wall ...
*
Scold's bridle 400px, A branked scold in Colonial New England, from a lithograph in ''A Brief History of the United States'' by Joel Dorman Steele and Esther Baker Steele from 1885 A scold's bridle, sometimes called a witch's bridle, a brank's bridle, or s ...
* Shrew's fiddle


Notes


References

;Bibliography * *


External links


Examples of Pillories
from the UK and Ireland on geograph.org.uk
Debate in the House of Commons on the Pillory Abolition Bill, 6 April 1815Debate in the House of Lords on the Pillory Abolition Bill, 5 July 1815and 10 July 1815Debate in the House of Commons on the Pillory Abolition Bill, 22 February 1816Debate in the House of Lords on the Pillory Abolition Bill, 26 February 1816
{{Authority control European instruments of torture Medieval instruments of torture Modern instruments of torture Physical restraint Punishment