The Punishments of China / Les Punitions des Chinois

punishments of china5“Burning a man’s eyes with lime” in Les Punitions des Chinois, représentés en vingt-deux gravures: avec des explications en Anglais et en Francais (London: Guillaume Miller; Printed for W. Miller by W. Bulmer, 1801). Twenty-two hand colored stipple engravings by John Dadley (1767-1817). Graphic Arts Collection GAX in process. References:  Abbey Travel 532 (1804 edition); Colas 2010; Cordier Sinica 549
punishments of china4
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Preface. The Chinese code of penal laws is compiled in such a manner as to have a punishment appropriated for every crime; a series of these is displayed in the following Plates. The wisdom of the Chinese Legislature is no where more conspicuous than in its treatment of robbers, no person being deomed [sic] to suffer death for having merely deprived another of some temporal property, provided he neither uses, nor carries, any offensive weapon. This sagacious edict renders robbery unfrequent; the daring violator of the laws, hesitating to take with him those means which might preserve his own life, or affect that of the plundered, in the event of resistance, generally confines his depredations to acts of private pilfering; and a robbery, attended with murder, is, of course, very rarely perpetrated.

punishments of china9The manner of beheading.
punishments of china8Conducting an offender into banishment.
punishments of china7Close confinement.
punishments of china6Punishment of the wooden collar.
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punishments of chinaGeorge Henry Mason, The Punishments of China. Illustrated by twenty-two engravings: with explanations in English and French (London: Printed for W. Miller by W. Bulmer, 1801). Graphic Arts Collections GAX in process.

1. A culprit before a magistrate; 2. A culprit conveyed to prison; 3. A culprit conducted to trial; 4. An offender undergoing the bastinade; 5. Twisting a man’s ears; 6. Punishment of the swing; 7. Punishing a boatman; 8. Punishing an interpreter; 9. The rack; 10. Torturing the fingers; 11. Burning a man’s eyes with lime; 12. A malefactor chained to an iron bar; 13. Punishment of the wooden collar; 14. A man fastened to a block of wood; 15. A malefactor in a cage; 16. Punishment of a wooden tube; 17. Hamstringing a malefactor; 18. Close confinement; 19. Conducting an offender into banishment; 20. A malefactor conducted to execution; 21. The capital punishment of the cord; 22. The manner of beheading.