September 29th, 2007

Effects of being hung by the wrists

I have a character that needs to be tormented, but not hurt in a permanent debilitating way. I am contemplating one scene in which his is attached to a pulley and hoisted up by the wrists and left to hang for hours. I know that the strappado variation (hands tied in back with weights on the feet) would dislocate (which my story can't heal!) but what would be the effect if the hands were bound in front and then the poor wretch was hoisted up?

How long could one stay there and not have permanent damage, and what might it feel like after a long time? Would the spinning and rocking or 'weightlessness' have a somatic or psychological effect? (He will be blindfolded and disoriented because I'm a mean writer). I have heard having the hands suspended above the head is excruciating after a long enough time - but was not able to find out if it was the muscles or the swelling above the wrists. I have also contemplated having weight attached to the feet, but the no permanent damage rule still applies:

Pain, mental suffering, but nothing hurt that can't be fixed.

Oh- and I an guessing the wrists would be tied with rope (though I have contemplated shackles if it would make for better drama).

* I have googled Medieval hanging from pulleys, but they all have the strappado, hands in back, substantial bone and muscle damage. Ditto for this site. On Wikipedia it mentions squassation as being hands tied in front, but from everything else I've read, this is an error (and hand were still tied in back). Or do I err?
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