Tuesday, 28 February 2012

Weird punishments of the week, part 2

Following our recent post about a weird punishment we've found another in the book Curious incidents from the ancient records of Kirkwall by W.R. Mackintosh.

Walter Beaumond, boatman, was charged on 6 May 1732 with having stolen a sheep from Quanterness Farm. His explanation was that he had come across a dead sheep so had skinned it and took the skin home "in his cassie". Having been found guilty the sentence passed was that Walter should go from the prison to the Rampart with the sheepskin fastened to his shoulders, where he was to stand for a quarter of an hour.

This didn't seem a terribly harsh punishment but, reading on, we discover that seven days later the Beaumond family were ordered to remove themselves and all their goods and gear from the Burgh "never to be seen there again". The hangman was given the sheepskin.

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