In the 17th Century, jiá gùn
(Pinyin; Wade-Giles romanization, kia quen
) 夾棍 was reportedly a technique used in China
for the interrogation
of male suspects
without putting their lives in danger.
The technique consisted of positioning three wooden or bamboo
boards, connected by rope
, around and between the suspect's bare feet. The construction of the device enabled the boards to be either snapped open and closed (like the wings of a butterfly
) or gradually tightened. Each time the prisoner
refused to testify or confess
, the rope was pulled smartly and the boards either whacked sharply at the ankles or slowly squeezed the feet ever more tightly. A similar device called the Tean zu
, applied exclusively to women, employed essentially identical mechanics to squeeze and crush the finger-bones.
was typically conducted while the prisoner was forced to painfully kneel on top of folded chains made of sharpened iron links.
- Scott, George Ryley. The History of Torture Through the Ages. London: Kegan Paul, 2003.