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Scolds bridle

17th-18th century iron executioner's mask, Tower of London exhibit. The smile was a nice touch.

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New show reveals how we doled out justice in times gone by

A Scolds Bridle or Brank was used between 1600-1700 to punish a nagging or foul-mouthed man or woman More

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Iron 'scold's bridle' A Belgian Iron 'scold's bridle' or 'branks' mask, with bell, used to publicly humiliate and punish, mainly women, for speaking out against authority, nagging, brawling with neighbours, blaspheming or lying. c.1550-1800.

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Another photo of the "Scold’s Bridle," a gruesome mask used as punishment for "rude, clamorous woman," who are considered to be spending too much gossiping or quarreling in the Medieval times. It came complete with a bell on top, no less: The custom developed in Britain in the 1500s, and spread to some other European countries, including Germany. When wearing the mask it was impossible to speak.

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The Scold's Bridle or Branks Judicial: Some houses had a hook in the wall at the side of the fireplace where the wife would be chained, until she promised to behave herself and curb her tongue.

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