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Skyrim Torture Chamber Mod

A torture chamber is a room where torture is inflicted.[3][4] The medieval torture chamber was windowless and often built underground, was lit by a few candles and was specifically designed to induce "horror, dread and despair" to anyone but those possessing a strong mind and "nerves of steel".[5]

skyrim torture chamber mod

Historically, torture chambers were located in royal palaces, in castles of the nobility and even buildings belonging to the church. They featured secret trap-doors which could be activated to throw victims into dark dungeons where they remained and eventually died. The skeletal remains of people who disappeared were strewn on the floor of the hidden dungeons. Other times the dungeons under the trap-doors included pits of water where the victim was thrown to drown after a lengthy torture session in the chamber above.[6]

In Peru, the torture chambers of the Spanish Inquisition were specifically constructed with thick walls so that the screams of the victims could not penetrate them and no sound could be heard from the outside. Other more sophisticated designs used principles of acoustics to muffle the screams of the tortured and included walls which recessed and protruded in such a fashion as to reflect the screams of the victims so that the sounds would not be carried to the exterior.

The mere presence of the torture chamber was used as a form of intimidation and coercion. The victims were first shown the chamber and if they confessed they would not be tortured inside it. Other times the torture chamber was used as the final destination in a series of prison cells where the victims would gradually be moved from one type of cell to another, under progressively worsening conditions of incarceration, and if they did not recant in the earlier stages they would finally reach the torture chamber. The final stage of actually going to the torture chamber itself, just prior to the initiation of torture, was euphemistically called the "Question".[1]

Throughout history, torture chambers have been used in a multiplicity of ways starting from Roman times. Torture chamber use during the Middle Ages was frequent. Religious, social and political persecution led to the widespread use of torture during that time. Torture chambers were also used during the Spanish Inquisition and at the Tower of London.[7][8][9]

Another example of a torture chamber, perhaps not generally well known, is "The Thieves' Tower" in the Alsace region of France. Once a tower used for torture, it is now a small museum displaying instruments used upon the prisoners to get them to confess crimes.[10]

In Venice, the Palazzo Ducale had its own torture chamber, which was deemed to be of such importance that renovations started in 1507 so that the chamber walls could be kept strong and secure: "considerata la grandissima importantia de j cameroti di la Camera del tormento che siano forti e securi".[11]

According to the narrations of Ashokavadana, King Ashoka, prior to his conversion to Buddhism, was a fierce and sadistic ruler, known as Ashoka the Fierce, who built a palatial torture chamber known as Ashoka's Hell. The legend of the torture palace is detailed in the writings of the Ashokavadana.

According to Ashokavadana, Ashoka asked Girika, who was the official executioner of his kingdom, to design an elaborate torture chamber disguised as a beautiful and "enticing" palace adorned with all kinds of decorations and full of amenities such as exclusive baths decorated with flowers, fruit trees and many ornaments. It was artfully designed to make people long to just look at it.[12]

According to legend, beneath the veneer of beauty deep inside the exclusive mansion, torture chambers were constructed which were full of the most sadistic and cruel instruments of torture including furnaces producing molten metal.[13]

According to the accounts contained in the Ashokavadana, Girika, the architect of the chamber, was inspired by descriptions of the five tortures of the Buddhist hell for the design of the torture chamber and of the torture methods he inflicted upon his victims.[14][15] The torture chamber was so terrifying, that King Ashoka himself was thought to have visited hell so that he could perfect its evil design.[16]

Some time later a Buddhist monk by the name of Samudra happened to visit the palace and upon entering he was informed by Girika that he would be tortured to death,[19][20] and was subsequently led into the torture chamber. His torturers however failed to injure him and he appeared able to neutralise their torture methods by performing miracles.[12][17][20]

Ashoka converted to Buddhism when he witnessed Samudra's miracles inside the torture chamber.[12][17][20] He also ordered Girika burned alive and ordered the demolition of the torture palace. According to the Ashokavadana, "the beautiful jail was then torn down and a guarantee of security was extended to all beings".[12][17]

According to Frederick Howard Wines in his book Punishment and Reformation: A Study of the Penitentiary System there were three main types of coercion employed in the torture chamber: coercion by cord, water, or fire.[23] There were five stages of torture that could have been applied to the accused: he could have been threatened with torture,[24] he could have been taken to the torture chamber and been shown the instruments, he could have been undressed as if in preparation to be tied to the instrument, without actually being tied, he could have been tied to the instrument of torture but not actually getting tortured and finally he could have been tied to the instrument and tortured.[25][26][27]

The process of being tied and led to the torture rack inside the torture chamber was a form of intimidation and was called territio realis as opposed to territio verbalis oder lexis which was the verbal threat of torture being made at the judgment hall. Territio realis as well as the actual torture session were called examen rigorosum.[27]

In the book Crime and Criminal Justice in Europe and Canada it is mentioned that fear was a factor in the process of torture and that there was a form of torture known as La présentation de la question or simply the "Question",[1] where the prisoner was led to the torture chamber and was shown the implements of torture. While at the chamber, sentence to full torture was pronounced but, immediately after, the prisoner was taken back to the prison cell, without actually having been tortured.[28]

The torture chamber was specifically designed to evoke fear in the victims.[29] It was usually built underground and only dimly lit. Inside the chamber waited the executioner, his face completely covered apart from two holes in the garment to enable him to peer through and wearing a black hood; his menacing appearance being described as "most diabolical" and "satanic".[29]

When during the Question, the view of the chamber, the torture implements and the executioner did not cause the victim to confess, a full-scale torture session was planned. To prepare for torture, the victim was stripped naked with hands tied. The penultimate step to torture included a repetition of the questions asked earlier of the victims. If the victims still proclaimed their innocence, full torture was initiated.[1][29]

The most common instrument of torture was the strappado,[2] which was a simple rope and pulley system. With the pulley attached to ceiling of the chamber, the lifting rope was tied to the wrist of the victim, whose hands were tied behind their back. Subsequently, the victim was raised to the ceiling and then lowered using a jerking motion causing dislocation of the shoulder joints. To increase the suffering caused by the strappado, weights were attached to the feet of the victim.[1][2]

Church doctrine protected human life so it was problematic if a victim were to die, especially before he or she confessed. In difficult cases, when a victim would not readily confess or was too weak to continue in an uninterrupted torture session, breaks were allowed between torture sessions because Inquisition regulations allowed only one torture session per victim. That way, a torture session could resume after a break to allow time for the victim to recover or reconsider his or her opposition to confessing, and it was considered to have been the continuation of the previous torture session and not a new one.[1]

Because confession under torture was not acceptable, the victim had to sign a written confession after he or she had made his or her oral confession under torture. Typically, during confession, the inquisitors demanded that the prisoner implicate as many people as possible and not only him or herself. If the prisoner resisted signing, the inquisitors could always resume the torture by claiming that they had just halted the session, just for the signing, but did not really put an end to it.[1]

The method of construction of the torture chamber of the papal palace at Avignon, used during the Inquisition, has been described as ingenious. The construction of some of the torture chambers at Avignon was based on principles of acoustics, specifically designed to muffle the screams and cries of the tortured.[30] The walls of the torture chamber recessed and protruded in a complementary fashion to the walls on the opposite side so as to reflect the screams of the victims locally, ensuring that their shrieks would not be carried to the exterior.[30] A chamber located above the main torture chamber had a dungeon with a hole near the middle of the floor through which, according to accounts, the tortured bodies of the prisoners were thrown into a cavity.[30] The chamber where the victims were being burnt was of circular construction and resembled the furnace of a glass-house with a funnel-like chimney at the top.[citation needed]

There were secret staircases and hidden spaces which were used to overhear the discussions in the prison cells. The ceiling of the torture chamber was especially designed to muffle the cries of the victims. Inside the torture chamber, furnaces and grates were also present.[31] Up to 1850 the chambers were shown to visitors after which time the ecclesiastical authorities of Avignon decided to shut them down. In a similar vein the torture chamber of the Spanish Inquisition in Lima, Peru had one metre thick walls so that the screams of the victims could not penetrate them.[32]

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