9 Medieval Torture Devices and Methods That Date Back to the Ancient World

From the heretic's fork to being eaten alive by insects, these grisly old torture methods prove that humans have always been brutal.

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1. The Rack

Origin: Antiquity

the rack medieval torture
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  • Photo Credit: Hulton Archive / Getty Images

2. Judas Cradle

Origin: Ancient Rome

3. Brazen Bull

Origin: Ancient Greece

medieval torture devices brazen bull
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  • Photo Credit: Wikimedia Commons

4. Heretic's Fork

Origin: Medieval Spain

5. Choke Pear

Origin: Unknown (first mention in France)

choke pear medieval torture device
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  • Photo Credit: Wikimedia Commons

6. Rat Torture

Origin: Unknown (possibly Britain)

7. Crucifixion

Origin: Various pre-Roman cultures

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  • Photo Credit: Wikimedia Commons

8. Scaphism

Origin: Ancient Persia

9. Saw Torture

Origin: Various part of the the ancient world

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  • Photo Credit: Wikimedia Commons