Thursday, February 18, 2016

The Witch Wringers of Small Hopes Hill


 There are not many things that leave me unsettled or uncomfortable, especially in my own neighbourhood, but the Witch Wringers on Small Hopes Hill never fail to creep me out a little when I pass by.

This 'wringer is located in Cromer on the cusp of the border with Overstrand. Note the cogged and geared spindles to which the accused witch (or witches) would be attached and wound through - somewhat like clothing through a mangle, but a lot more crunchy and bloody.


This 'wringer can be found a few yards from the first in the Parish of Overstrand. As you can see, it is still draped with vestiges of barbed wire from when it was repurposed as a fence post during World War II (although, the wire on this one dates from more recent times - probably from after the railway line was closed in 1953.
 
 These two examples were used until relatively recently - well past the end of the so-called Dark Ages in the 14th century, and even past the introduction of the Witchcraft Act of 1735 - as is evident by the fact that they're still standing and haven't rusted away to dust.
 As reminders of a different time go, they're pretty unspeakable. However, I am comforted in the knowledge that although these Witch Wringers have been used, no actual witches have passed through their horrific spindles. Instead, I believe they were used to torture ordinary mortals.

 Phew!

  

16 comments:

  1. Yikes! Those look like some of the exhibits in the torture museum in Rothenburg!

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    1. Except that they don't go so well with custard as choke pears...

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  2. A friend was evacuated from London during the war to a country village that had a ducking stool.Great fun for small boys, apparently.Just as well that village didn't have wringers!

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    1. I used to love the ducking stool! Wheeeeeeeeeee!!! Glub. Wheeeeeeeeee!!! Glub. Wheeeeeeee- Oh, you get the picture.

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  3. remind me to not look at real estate in your neighbourhood!

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    1. I totally understand. I mean, if people can't even keep a couple of Witch Wringers rust-free and clear of ivy, just imagine what state their homes are in?!

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  4. Perfect! Just in time for the Presidential Election Year! There are plenty of nuts running for public office, & these nuts could use some cracking. These wringers be the perfect tools, esp. the one with the barbed wire! Can we borrow them through an interlibrary loan program or some exchange/rent system of sorts? We'll be sure to return them after elections are over in November.

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    1. What a splendid idea! I'll have my people talk to your people.

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  5. what eros said because i'm too traumatized to think of anything to say! xoxoxo for you, sweetpea

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    1. It seems the repurposing of these 'wringers into Politician Wringers is a popular idea. Princess is after one, too! Looks like I'll have to loan them out on some sort of time-share basis?

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  6. they are just Nasty! But i must admit very well built to have withstood the test of time... Perhaps recycling them as politician wringers isn't such a bad idea as we are facing another farcical election here this year too. Athough in recent years we have demonstrated that prime ministers don't need to be elected given the political parties penchance for "rolling their own". We've had 5 in the past 5or six years. Kevin Rudd, rolled by Julia Gillard, Julia re- rolled by Kevin Rudd revisited whose party was then kicked out by the people for, Tony Abbott, who was recently rolled by the now PM Malcolm Turnbull. At this rate we can probably do away with meaningless elections all together... They're all only in it for their own ego's and react to popularity polls rather than foresighted gevernance.... Oh... and to see how much money they can cream off the people to line their own pockets with for a problem free retirement.... Burn them! Burn them all....

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    1. Oh, dear, Princess. Now I feel guilty that these 'wringers are just standing around here gathering moss. Time to put Eros's plan into action! I'll have one cleaned up and sent to Oz forthwith! Just hose it down once you've done with it as Savvy's having it next.

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  7. I can only restate the question: what are you doing living in Cold Comfort Farm?

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    1. It's an accident! I found my way in and now can't get out!

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  8. I'm surprised that they haven't been stolen or vandalized.

    *orders a pair for The Oubliette*

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    1. The last little thug who did try to vandalise one of them ended up as a pile of mush on its other side.

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