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Harbat - the pillory

The pillory or stretch-neck stands on a cosy square in the cluster of the market. In short, it is a wooden platform with a framework that holds the hands and head in a tight grasp. Offenders of good conduct are displayed here to the public as an example - before being thrown in the prison and left to rot away: stealing, treason, arson, blasphemy, witchcraft, wife-beating, lying, threatening, dice-cogging, and fortune-telling, are a one-way ticket to the pillory.

During daytime, people come here to laugh and throw things at the imprisoned. It is perhaps the busiest square of the cluster, as it links various important alleys and has the popular stretch-neck tavern overlooking the enclosed square (in front of it, some thugs are harassing a tourist). The jester is always near, earning a coin or two with bawdy pranks.

At night, life drains from this place and it becomes a haunt of shadows.

One man was set in the pillory for delivering false dinner invitations; another for a rough practical joke. All sharpers, beggars, impostors, vagabonds, were liable to be pilloried. So fierce sometimes was the attack of the populace with various annoying and heavy missiles on pilloried prisoners that several deaths are known to have ensued.