38.8 MB (2.7 MB compressed)
4350 x 3117 pixels
36.8 x 26.4 cm ⏐ 14.5 x 10.4 in (300dpi)
NYPL / SCIENCE SOURCE / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY NYPL / SCIENCE SOURCE / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
The rack is a torture device consisting of a rectangular, usually wooden frame, slightly raised from the ground, with a roller at one or both ends. The victim's ankles are fastened to one roller and the wrists are chained to the other. As the interrogation progresses, a handle and ratchet mechanism attached to the top roller are used to very gradually increase the tension on the chains, inducing excruciating pain. By means of pulleys and levers this roller could be rotated on its own axis, straining the ropes until the sufferer's joints were dislocated and eventually separated. Usually, the victim's shoulders and hips would be separated and their elbows, knees, wrists, and ankles would be dislocated. Image appeared in China Illustrated by Thomas Allom, 1845.
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