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The Manacles


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Manacles are iron handcuffs that were fastened around a victim's wrists. The victim was hung with their feet off the ground which became very painful after a time. As the reign of Elizabeth I progressed, the ruthless use of the rack, particularly on Jesuit priests such as Edmund Campion and Alexander Briant, provided ammunition for overseas critics of the English regime. This may partly explain why, in the 1590s, more writs were issued specifying the use of the manacles. This could also be a product of the rise of the inquisitor Richard Topcliffe, who seems to have favoured this method of torture.

19th Aug 2007 by Diane Earl


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London tower dungeon gaol prison punish crime criminal torture manacle punishment stuart

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