Tarring and Feathering
The first record of this punishment is in 1189 (1 Rich. I.). A
statute was made that any robber voyaging with the crusaders “shall be
first shaved, then boiling pitch shall be poured upon his head, and a
cushion of feathers shook over it.” The wretch was then to be put on
shore at the very first place the ship came to. (Rymer Faedera, i 65.)
Source: Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, E. Cobham Brewer, 1894
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