Medieval torture devices go on display in Poland -

Medieval torture devices go on display in Poland

(AP) -- Heretics beware - around 50 torture devices used in times of inquisition are currently on show in Warsaw.

From stocks to manacles all kinds of instruments of punishment can be seen at the city centre gallery called "Traffic."

Paolo Gobetti, a historian from Italy, says they exhibition comprises some of the most severe pain-inflicting devices.

"Drawing inspiration from the Inquisition, many torture devices have been used in a much more recent past. Under Franco in Spain in particular, it's well known that the garrotte has been used as well as the grid, which is still being used in South American prisons - this is a rumor, it's unofficial."

The garrote, a device with a sharp metal tip that screws into the back of the neck, was the official instrument of capital punishment in Spain until 1975, when the last person to be executed was a young student later found to be innocent.

The country eventually abolished the death penalty, partly based on that mistake.

Every torture device on display is accompanied by a historical description in six languages as well as pictures and original drawings so the visitors can learn more about the history of torture.

The organizers, the Polish Cultural Centre "Traffic" and History Society from Valtelline in Italy, hope visitors will experience the complexity of human nature that has pushed mankind to cruel treatment of one another.

The exhibition has toured over 15 countries including Spain, France, Italy, Argentina and Russia.

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