Taunting Persons in the Stocks.details

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Taunting Persons in the Stocks.

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“The “Cambridge Trinity College Psalter”—an illuminated manuscript—presents some curious illustrations of the manners of the earlier half of the twelth century. We give a reproduction of one of its quaint pictures. Two men are in the stocks; one, it will be seen, is held by one leg only, and the other by both, and a couple of persons are taunting them in their time of trouble.

Stocks were not only used as a mode of punishment, but as a means of securing offenders. In bygone times, every vill of common right was compelled to erect a pair of stocks at its own expense. The constable by common law might place persons in the stocks to keep them in hold, but not by way of punishment.” (pp. 173, 4)

From the lines across the ankles of the two taunters, and the absence of such lines across the ankles of the prisoners, I deduce that the two men in the stocks are barefoot, as in the previous illustration. The prisoner on the left is spreading his hands as if in denial of some accusation.



86 x 32mm (3.4 x 1.3 inches)

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Scanner dpi:

2400 dots per inch



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