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THE PUNISHMENT OF THE BASTINADO

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THE PUNISHMENT OF THE BASTINADO

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Drawing by William Alexander, draughtsman of the Macartney Embassy to China in 1793. The punishment of the offender. Alexander noted that corporal punishments were frequently applied in China, even for slight offenses, and occasionally were inflicted even on low-ranked Mandarins whose degree of nobility did not exceeded the blue ball on the cap; and was viewed by the population as a fatherly correction. The instrument used was usually a split bamboo, several feet long, which was applied on the posteriors, and, in crimes of magnitude, with much severity. In petty offenses, the offender, if he has the means, sometimes was able to bribe the executioner, who, in proportion to the extent of the reward, mitigated the violence of the punishment, by laying the strokes on lightly, though with a feigned strength, to deceive the observing Mandarin; however, when eighty or a hundred blows were prescribed, it sometimes affected the life of the wretched criminal. Image taken from The Costume of China, illustrated in forty-eight coloured engravings, published in London in 1805.

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1793
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18th century people of china
18th century people of china