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Curious Punishments of Bygone Days

Curious Punishments of Bygone Days (ISBN 1-406-79647-6) was 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."

As the title suggests, the subject of the chapters is various archaic punishments.

Table of contents

  • Foreword
  • The Bilboes
  • The Ducking Stool
  • The Stocks -(Morse seems to make a distinction between stocks for the feet, in the Stocks chapter, and stocks for the head, described in the Pillory article- which itself clashes with the modern day understanding of a pillory as a whipping post)
  • The Pillory
  • Punishments of Authors and Books
  • The Whipping Post
  • The Scarlet Letter
  • Branks and Gags
  • Public Penance
  • Military Punishments
  • Branding and Maiming

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