Archive for Catherine Wheel

14 November 1226 – Count Frederick of Isenberg

Posted in Breaking wheel, Catherine Wheel, Death penalty with tags , , , , , on November 14 by Old Sparky

Count Frederick of Isenberg (Friedrich von Isenberg) was literally broken to death for murdering the Archbishop of Cologne in Medieval Germany.

Recent research suggests the archbishop was just caught up in the action and his death was an accident. Nevertheless, the Medieval German aristocrat was stripped of all assets and titles and excommunicated. One his way back from Rome, having had the excommunication lifted, the German noble was captured and handed over to Cologne Cathedral. 

He was slowly tortured to death outside the Severin Gate. His arms and legs were systematically pulverised, then he was placed on a breaking (or Catherine) wheel. And he was slowly stretched until his remaining bones shattered. He took a day to die. He was then strung up on a pillar for all to see.

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