In the Clouds

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The Scold’s Bridle

A scold’s bridle is a British invention, possibly originating in Scotland, used between the 16th and 19th Century. It was a device used to control, humiliate and punish gossiping, troublesome women by effectively gagging them. Scold comes from the ‘common scold’: a public nuisance, more often than not women, who habitually gossiped and quarrelled with their neighbours, while the name bridle describes a part that fitted into the mouth. The scold’s bridle was also known as the ‘gossiping bridle’ and the ‘Brank(s)’, and was commonly used by husbands on their nagging or swearing wives. The device was occasionally used on men; however, it was primarily used on women who agitated the male-dominated society of the era.

(Source: )

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  24. thepersonalispolitic reblogged this from lipsredasroses and added:
    The modern scold’s bridle is words like “feminist,” “slut,” and “dyke.”
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    Good God.
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    this is a tool of the present - not directly. now we control “our” women with words like ‘bitch’ to keep there mouths...
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