History’s Most Terrifying Ways of Punishing People

The Scold’s Bridle

5. The Scold’s Bridle

The bridle was an instrument used for punishment, through torture and humiliation. Commonly made of iron, some were frameworks containing a muzzle that covered the head; sort of like a cage, and others were masks.

Also referred to as “the witches bridle” the device was mainly used to punish women if they were considered rude and had “troublesome or riotous” speech since the bridle contained a part that would hold down the tongue to prevent speech.

The bridle would sometimes come with a gaging device that would cause lacerations on the tongue but would otherwise cause mouth fatigue and excessive salivation.

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