Medieval Monday: Scold’s Bridle

If you’re a woman and you ever thought you might like to live back in the Middle Ages, today’s post just might change your mind.

Man in the Iron Mask, anyone?
Man in the Iron Mask, anyone?

Women had it tough back in the olden days (admittedly, we still have issues in the present day too). They were expected to be well-mannered and to, well, keep their mouths shut all the damned time. Meet the Scold’s Bridle.

This particular device was designed to punish women who enjoyed gossiping (and nagging) a bit too much. If a Lord or husband got irritated with a gossipy woman, he could just slap this device on her. The Scold’s Bridle is basically an iron cage for the head. Generally, an attachment was included, consisting of either a metal spiked plate that was put into the woman’s mouth to pierce the tongue (you know, to stop it wagging out gossip) or a ball gag (to make her just stfu).

I once daydreamed about living back in the Middle Ages. Now, I’m convinced I would’ve been burnt at the stake at a relatively young age.


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