View Full Version : Punishment in the 1700's - the "skampåle"

06-07-04, 10:25
This contraction is standing at the Basatorget square in Ekenäs and may give you a picture of how people were punished in the early 1700's in Finland.

The pole is called a "skampåle", a "shame pole" and was in use until the start of 1840.

The picture of the pole is here (http://finlander.eget.net/Ekenas_pale.jpg)

June Pelo
06-07-04, 17:51
Here's a quote from an art icle about Nedervetil parish in the 1700's:

In Nedervetil parish in the 1700's, Catechism and reading examinations as well as training in writing were the first forms of teaching. Young people were often noisy and ill-mannered in church, so in 1781 the church was required to appoint a supervisor over the children during divine service. At a reading examination in Murick that same year farm hand Jakob Gabrielsson was threatened with a school whipping. At a reading examination in 1775 Ahlskog's maid Karin Michelsdotter was warned about slow book learning and laziness.

The usual penalty for missing a reading examination and for reading aloud poorly was the log punishment. With legs firmly shackled in the logs, they were punished by sitting outside the church door along the roadside for public inspection. This was a great shame and far from pleasant. This punishment was used frequently. (It must have been similar to the pillory.) "Wisdom should be knocked in with sticks to prevent lazy machines from taking supremacy," an old saying goes. At reading examinations the young people were threatened with whipping if they did not read aloud better.

Here is a website with pictures of a pillory and stocks: