More horrible stuff from China… I promise I don’t hate China as much as my collection of hard drive detritus might seem to suggest. Like the propaganda LPs, these images are mostly lacking context. The file names all include “NYPL”, which I’m guessing and/or vaguely recollecting is New York Public Library (or Libraries). I have a scan of the frontispiece, so I know the book they’re from is The Punishments of China– it also says “Illustrated with twenty-two engravings and explanations in English and French. London: Printed for William Miller, Old-Bond-Street; by William Bulmer & Co., Cleveland-Bow, St. Jame’s [sic], 1804.” Unfortunately I don’t have those explanations in English and French, so let’s all guess what the punishments are.
This one’s easy: crucifixion! Sorry for putting an exclamation point on crucifixion. His queue appears to be tied to the pole. It’s attention to these little details that marks out a true punisher from the dabblers.
Manacled to a bench? Could be worse…
I have no idea. There’s a bucket. Some kind of proto-waterboarding?
Hit in the face with a hairbrush? The brutal, unsavoury human torture origins of the Whack-a-Mole arcade game?
Lifted by the ears? What is this a punishment for?
If you like this blog and have been intrigued, titillated, surprised or disgusted by anything you've seen here then please consider sending a few £/€/$/¥ etc. my way by getting one of my books. They're written by the same person who writes this blog, so you will like them too. They're available in print, or as ebooks for every existing type of reader and tablet. You can also tip my films on Vimeo, if you want. Thanks.