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Julian Reynolds




Location: United Kingdom
Joined: 30 Mar 2008

Posts: 271

PostPosted: Sun 03 Aug, 2008 1:05 am    Post subject: Instruments(!) of Torture         Reply with quote

Ok, so it's not strictly Arms & Armour, but I thought you guys might like to see what I've just been making.

They're not strictly for torture, more like unusual Mediaeval means of restraint (sort of like portable stocks!).

Both are hand made from oak, with hand forged iron fittings. My only concession to modernity is that all threads are M8.

Both are copied from originals and are fully functioning:

The 'Shrew's Fiddle' and the 'Noisemaker's Fife'



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Fiddle 1.JPG


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Fiddle 5.JPG


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Fife 1.JPG


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Fife 3.JPG


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Daniel Michaelsson




Location: Dena Lagu
Joined: 29 May 2007

Posts: 54

PostPosted: Sun 03 Aug, 2008 2:16 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

You've done a good job on those. Were the originals used purely for restraint or were they to inflict pain also?
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Russ Thomas
Industry Professional



Location: Telemark, Norway
Joined: 25 Jan 2004
Reading list: 43 books

Posts: 323

PostPosted: Sun 03 Aug, 2008 2:34 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Beautiful work Julian. These are items that you do not see very often! Some torture instruments were in themselves works of art, though these are as you say, restraints, not torture instruments as such. Very nice work though, and using oak too, people outside of England just don't realise how rare oak is in England ! Eek!
I have made quite a few torture instruments over the years, including the fife, but mine have been of all metal construction.
Are these for use in reenacment or were they made purely for fun?
In the early days in England, 11-1200's, the sign of the fiddle was often hung over the local jail, or gaol, as most of the inmates were often seditious music makers, and the fiddle was usually their instrument.
Very nice, unusual and interesting work Julian.

Regards,

Russ

Carpe diem, quam minimum credula postero !


http://www.living-history.no
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Tim Lison




Location: Chicago, Illinois
Joined: 05 Aug 2004
Likes: 1 page
Reading list: 6 books

Spotlight topics: 1
Posts: 1,508

PostPosted: Sun 03 Aug, 2008 8:40 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

These are really nicely done. Funny to think how beautiful devices of resraint once were! These are sure nicer than today's handcuffs... Russ mentioned the 11-1200s, is that when these would be from? Also, did these have specific crimes they were associated with? Was the "noisemakers fife" actually used for noisemakers?
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Julian Reynolds




Location: United Kingdom
Joined: 30 Mar 2008

Posts: 271

PostPosted: Sun 03 Aug, 2008 2:26 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Dan, Russ, Tim,

Thanks! I originally made these after reading 'The Big Book of Pain' which was written by my WMA instructor, Mark Donnelly. A lot of my friends are mediaeval musicians, and the idea of instruments of 'punishment' actually being in the shape of musical instruments really appealed to me!

They are very late mediaeval ie. 15-16th C.

I enjoy the inventiveness that must have come with originally designing and creating them - they were never designed to inflict pain, but a great deal of humour that is lost to modern eyes went into making them!

Julian
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Julian Reynolds




Location: United Kingdom
Joined: 30 Mar 2008

Posts: 271

PostPosted: Sun 17 Aug, 2008 1:27 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I did a photo shoot the other day with the 'instruments', just to show how they work, with one of my mediaeval musician friends (who normally plays a hurdy-gurdy) agreeing to play the part of the 'Wench'!

The setting is Brancepeth Castle, in whose basement I share a workshop. I've added a couple of pics of the castle.



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Ann R.




Location: Miami Area, Florida
Joined: 12 Aug 2008
Reading list: 2 books

Posts: 4

PostPosted: Sun 17 Aug, 2008 6:46 am    Post subject: Beautiful Craftmanship         Reply with quote

I've made several trips to the medieval Criminal Museum at Rothenburg ob der Tauber in Germany while I lived "across the pond". The accuracy of your work is a pleasure to behold.

This site had more pictures than the official site: http://www.network54.com/Forum/261154/thread/...Rothenburg
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