Punch,  37 (1859), 121.

The Steam Cat





Steam-power, Military Technology, Crime

    Discusses the invention of a 'Flogging Machine' for use in the army, a steam-powered cat-o'-nine-tails that can, according to the reduction of steam pressure, 'tear and scratch the back to a depth varying from half an inch to less than a line'. Adds that the 'machine will render the military and civil authorities independent of a soft-hearted executioner, and will save them from one whose heart is too much in his work'. Observes that the machine will also enable the 'civil prescribers of flagellation' to 'inflict the exact amount of torture' instead of 'uncertain agony', and utters a 'scream' that can drown out the 'shrieks of the sufferer'.

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