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Saturday, 28 October 2017

Trestle Trained

From New Blushes 2.14
Honey had never been in this room before. She certainly would not have come through the door by choice, but she had been specifically instructed to be here at this precise hour and she had been specifically told how she was to present herself. She was to wear panties only; nothing else and she had been warned in very exact terms of what she was to expect when she was in this room.
It was a large room and had just one piece of ‘furniture’, that is what she supposed it was, a trestle. Nothing else and usually she would not have given the wooden structure another thought except that she knew already that the trestle was there so that she could stretch her shapely young torso over it, stretched tautly too, so that her rounded attractive buttocks would be purposefully postured for punishment. She blinked her eyes as she stared at the solid piece of carpentry. It now presented something menacing and a shudder of apprehension simmered through her soft curvy body. She had been given a choice. But that did not even bear thinking about. She most certainly did not want to feel fire and mayhem bursting out all over her charming nates, but it was more preferable than the choice that she had been offered.
Mr Chester had taken his time when he had been interviewing her after she had been discovered in her naughtiness. Would she prefer the strap and attentive punishment that she would be expected to suffer if she were given the choice of going to the trestle room. Yes, she had felt the tears attempting to brim her eyes, as she helplessly nodded her head.
‘You do understand, Honey, that there will be no acceptance of refusal to obey once you are in that room?’
‘Yes,’ her voice was hardly audible.
‘One suggestion of refusal young lady and you will have to accept the alternative.’
‘Yes. I understand,’ she shuddered.
‘How old are you now, Honey?’ he changed the subject.
‘Eighteen years, sir,’ she told him.
‘Hmmm. Much too young to get yourself involved in this sort of scandal,’ he pointed at the report that had condemned her.
‘Yes, sir. I’m sorry. It won’t happen again,’ she tried to plead her way out of this terrible situation.
‘No, I am sure you won’t,’ he assured her that he totally agreed with her promise ‘Not to do it again’! Once their shapely bums had been introduced to the strap, cane and the spanking; added to which they had to stay perfectly still and immobile whilst other parts of their charming bodies were ‘examined’ and explored, all thought of being naughty just evaporated!
Honey was almost on the point of offering her nubile shapeliness to his inventive mind and she was truly ready to play any role he might like to devise, but something about Mr Chester positively rebutted any thought of bribery.
‘Now Honey, you know that you will be undressed,’ he enjoyed these little preliminary reminders of the wrongdoers hapless acceptance of the stringent conditions.
‘Yes, yes sir,’ she blushed even deeper.
‘And you know you will have to adopt certain poses,’
‘Yes sir, I know,’ she felt her face blush ever deeper.
‘And you will have to bend over the frame so that your bottom will be the better presented for punishment.’
She could only nod now. She dared not risk any attempt at speaking.
‘And you will not only try hard to stand still whilst your mentor is ‘examining’ you, but there must be no thought whatsoever of trying to dissuade him from touching you wherever he wishes to.’
Mr Chester saw the agitated horror reflecting in her pretty face. He wished desperately that he was the one who would be able to have her virtually at his mercy, doing his bidding without a sound of protest or a movement that suggested that she was not ready to co-operate fully in the scene that would be set for her punishing ordeal. Honey was aching to wee right now, but dare not interrupt Mr Chester in his judicial type of capacity as he slowly drew all the stops out in an effort to enjoy this situation whereby the lovely young girl had to literally agree with everything he was suggesting.
She was standing quite stiffly to attention and knew that it was forbidden for her to move, so the intense tightness and pressure now growing just into the soft-lipped cunt was beginning to get very painfully uncomfortable. Her thighs stiffened and pressed tightly together as she tried to ease the nuisance of wanting to wee from her tummy. It relaxed away as it always does under these circumstances. Her system having let her know that she needed to wee and getting no reaction to alleviate the position ceased... but it was momentary. Honey once again felt the surge of pressure just above the lips of her cunt and then it became a harsh impatient sensation that was more than a little uncomfortable. Mr Chester was still warming to his theme of lecturing her on her naughty ways. He was seated in his oversized leather chair, and he could not help but admire the view he had before him of this truly winsome creature and his mind vividly fantasised what she would look like when down to her panties and posing before stretching over the framed trestle, and then only after the panties had been removed. He thought he detected a shiver ripple through her attentively posed torso. There it was again. He was no slouch in the surveillance of the human anatomy, nor the habits that the human body attains. As though by some form of thought wave, he sensed that Honey was responding to the need to pee!! How delicious!!! He would have to leave her there for a few minutes longer.
For Honey it was the most excruciating sensation of discomfort. Her bladder was now getting into a treacherous state of rebellion! To be disregarded so was something nobody should have to suffer. If only she could cross her legs as they did when waiting for transport or some such time, but to have to stand like this, thighs straight and not able to yield to the terrible craving to squat for relief was something that she had never endured before. She almost gasped as she took a breath when she felt sure that the dam had been broken. No, it was alright.
‘What is wrong, Honey?’ he asked all concerned.
It was a question that defied any sane response. She could have told him she was worried about the impending punishment in the Trestle Room, it would have been the most sensible answer...
‘... I want to wee,’ she blushed furiously.
‘How badly?’ he asked.
She blinked. How badly?? What sort of insane remark was that?
‘I want to wee... urgently,’ she gasped.
‘You may hold yourself,’ he said grandly.
What a truly lovely view! Honey had long forgot modesty. She placed her hand between her legs and held it there tightly as she crossed the upper muscles of her legs.
‘Better?’ he smiled.
‘Yes. But please Mr Chester... I really ought to go to the toilet.’
She watched as he stood up and opened the heavy panelled door off to one side of his office. It was a sight to please the most urgent of toilet wishers!
‘In you go,’ he said magnanimously and watched as she sped into the small room.
She was even more shamed and embarrassed when he stood there watching her. She looked back at him as though waiting for him to close the door. But Mr Chester did not get this opportunity every day!
‘I should hurry,’ he suggested.
What perfectly lovely legs, he thought as Honey threw modesty to the wind. Brief panties too... nice the way she thrust them down and then as she sat there, facing him, he was able to see the small tufts of her fair-haired pubes. She certainly was right, he thought, she did want to wee urgently. He watched as she took the soft tissue paper and dried herself, and then she was showing him her bottom as she turned to face the sink and with warm water and further tissue cleansed the relieved area of her pussy. Lord, what a truly magnificent pair of nates. Young and delicious in the extreme.
‘Thank you,’ she avoided the threatening tears of shame.
‘Splendid... splendid,’ he patted her bottom before she pulled up her panties and she blushed even deeper. This was getting worse by the second…
That had been two days ago, she remembered. Now here she was in the dreaded room itself. The trestle now presented something very sinister. Her breasts were very proud as they thrust attractively in her nudity. Only her panties covered her, and as she stood there, her legs actually inside the wooden strut that formed a support for the upper framework she looked down at the forced forward pressure as her arms reached behind her to pose in the waiting manner prescribed. She knew what she had to do, and when she heard the door open behind her, a very cold and icy finger seemed to trace lines up and down her spine. As she heard the door close again, she stretched her hands up and placed them on her head. Footsteps like soft padding ghostly paces were approaching the spot on which she stood.
‘Stand in front of the trestle,’ a cold stern voice commanded.
She took a virtual pace back and this took her from the inner strut to the desired spot.
She saw him for the first time and decided that he was quite a nice-looking man, but she also saw the tawse-like strap and like an ancient monarch under the orders of the executioner Honey felt the renewed horror of what that strap was going to be able to do. She did not look down when his hands, after placing the tawse to one side, came up slowly to fondle-weight her attractive titties. He seemed to ensnare her prickly flint-hard nipples in all his fingertips and drew her soft but firm titties into elongated forms of fleshy delight.
After he had closed his hands over them to fully encompass her breasts, Honey respond to the thrills of sexual caresses. She was aware now just how firm her globes had become and also how aching and flinty-harsh her nipples were. She was dry mouthed and was suffering the paradoxical pleasure of being sexually stimulated and also the deep pulsating shame of helplessness that had been enforced into her system by her mentor.
She stood there trembling as she felt her panties being eased down her legs and then Honey was truly naked. From the rear she felt hands testing the smoothness of her bottom, and then also from behind came his hands to stroke over the flat area of her tummy...
Her gasp was audible when fingers slipped slowly between the very shapely tapering thighs and along the furrow of her sex slot. She knew that the labia was being eased apart but the only sensation she was able to react to was the thrilling exciting heat that was surrounding her clitoris. It throbbed with real pleasure and sexual sensations. She moaned several times and was relishing this unexpected twist to her emotions.
‘Back to the more urgent nature of your visit,’ she heard him and she could not prevent the whimper.
He was very insistent on the meticulous manner in which he wanted her to be posed. Her ankles were spread wide so that they were trapped round the rear struts, and then her arms, once she had stretched herself fully, were to be placed on the forward struts so that Honey knew she was not only positioned properly for the thrashing he was going to give her, but she was taut and wide open in a helpless state of readiness... She choked yet again when hands once more traversed the soft moons of her bottom. She suffered the caresses in silence as she knew she must do. Whatever the mentor wished to do to her now, she knew that there was nothing whatsoever that she could do or say to prevent him. He examined her very, very closely! Honey had no intimate secrets from him when he at last ceased he physical exploration of her. Then he was spanking her. Not harshly, not as though in punishment, but rather like a firm patting caress....
‘Now you must stay still,’ She shuddered when the cold leather of the tawse actually stroked over her helplessly posed bottom... she knew it would sting and hurt like crazy but how could he really expect her to lie still?
‘You admit that you have been a naughty girl?’
‘Yes,’ she was hardly able to speak.
‘Pardon?’ he pretended that he had not heard her. ‘Yes, I do,’ she miserably admitted.
‘I don’t think you feel at all sorry,’ he teased.
‘Oh but I do... I do,’ she felt so awful in this shameful and exposed posture.
He had let her know by his exploring hands how much she was revealing and to have to stay like this with so much of her intimate area in full display was not the least bit comforting or reassuring!
‘So I want to hear you telling me that you have been a very naughty girl,’ he insisted.
‘I have... I am sorry though... I know that I have been a very naughty girl,’ she told him.
‘And that you most certainly deserve to have a good thrashing on your bare bottom.’
‘Yes,’ she let the word of agreement escape her mouth in a sound of exasperated helplessness. What else could she say?
‘Tell me so.’
‘I... I most certainly do deserve to have a good thrashing on my bare bottom,’ her choking tones told him.
‘And I am to give you a very stern obedience test.’
‘Yes,’ she said.
‘I think you should say yes please,’ he was smiling at her helpless ability to defend herself… or her modesty
‘Yes please,’ she moaned.
‘Yes please... let me hear you, Honey.’
‘I think I have to be given a very stern obedience test,’ she was decidedly, most unhappy.
‘Hold yourself in that pose,’ he reminded her.
There was a most terrible sound! It was a swishing, angry sound. The sound transmitted into another sound, and that was of leather striking skinned flesh! The tawse had landed!!
Honey’s eyes opened very wide and she was sure that her bottom thrust up in a reaction like an explosion. Sheer hell and fire seemed to leap all over the very meatiest part of her tautly-stretched buttocks. Her hands seemed glued to the other side, and so intense was the sheer hell of the reaction, that her legs seemed to clasp the lower struts of the trestle and then her mouth responded too!
Ciihheeeeeeeees... Oh nooooooo... Oh help… help,’ was all she could think to cry.
And then that awful sound again... surely he did not intend to give her too many of these... it was just too hot... her backside responded once again as the twin-strapped instrument swathed a path through the air and then struck barely an inch from the first stroke... she felt her knees drum against the wood as her mouth let him know how the tawse was able to bring such pain to a young woman’s bottom.
Noooooooooo... No... No... No... Please... I…I can’t stand it nnnnooonooooooo... Aaaaagher... Oh dear lord... No... No... No,’ her mouth had now become a constant reaction to the steady swishing of the tawse.
Gradually the strap covered every inch of her writhing backside... she humped it up and down, and she gave a slight jerking wriggle each time the strap reminded her that she was a naughty girl!
The punisher was methodical in the application of his delightful task. Nothing pleased him more than to have a shapely young girl, especially as attractive as this one, who voluntarily offered herself in the most exacting postures for him to do as he pleased with... it all had something to do with the pain, of course. To avoid further pain, a girl would offer herself in the most surprising and demeaning of situations and even pretend that they would enjoy being treated so shamefully for his pleasure.
‘I shall wish to see you here in two weeks’ time,’ he told her.
‘Oh please... please, do not thrash me any more,’ she sobbed not daring to touch the fragile area of her blazing bottom cheeks... ‘I’ll do anything... anything you want me to... I swear it...’
‘I don’t think you should be offering yourself for something you do not know can exist.’
‘I... I don’t care... tell me what you want me to do... I swear I will try my hardest to please you,’ she choked.
There was no doubt in Honey’s mind, that there could be nothing so treacherously invented that could worsen the agonies of the leather tawse striping wracking sensations across the cheeks of her arse. If he fancied something sexual, no matter what, she knew she would rather offer her body, in any shape, way or form for him to use.
But to have to accept more of that dreadful strap... it was just too awful for her to even want to think about.
It was two weeks to the day. Honey, once again standing with only panties on, and this time she was bending slightly forward so that the skin of her bottom could be closely examined. It was amazing how the cheeks had returned to the original creaminess... the soft nates were being stroked and squeezed by him, and he had eased the garment down to form a white slashed line immediately under the lower crease of her bottom.
‘This all seems to have cleared up,’ she heard him say.
‘Yes... yes, sir,’ she did not want them brought to that dreadful state again.
‘Do you like having your bottom played with like this,’ he smiled as he stroked and freely played with the softly-posed cheeks.
‘Yes... yes I do,’ she had to stop chewing her lip in case she displeased him. Honey knew which she preferred... he could play with the cheeks of her arse all he wanted, so long as his mind did not travel along the path of tawsing her again... she knew she would have to keep his mind from such terrible thoughts!
She waited until he had seated himself on the trestle and then he patted his lap... she did not wait to be told what he wanted... she draped herself over his lap and stayed there as she responded to strange randy thrills as his fingertips stroked and touched her between her legs....
‘You have quite a nice cunt, Honey,’ he told her.
Please don’t start getting any other ideas, she thought to herself... please keep on about my nice cunt... my playable bottom... anything except punishment, she prayed.
‘Yes, yes sir,’ she moaned.
It was true, she was beginning to respond now to the thrilling and fruity sex waves that were building up inside her quim... she found herself opening her thighs even wider and soon she was exposing herself as fully as she could without even thinking that she wanted to do anything otherwise. He was able to study the tight clutching lips. It was only shortly after that, that Honey was stretched backwards... and now he could really enjoy the view of her body. She was stretched with the bar of the trestle under her bottom and the arching of her torso into the backward shape, at least let her know that she was not to be strapped... she stayed there letting a different inferno build up inside her and this fire was being stoked up by his fingers on her sex maddened cunt... inside the tight hole, his finger reamed and as he bore more and more into her body so she became hotter and hotter for a sexual fulfilment… so it had to be the floor!
As she lay there, happy that he had decided to take her, she realised that it had been a long time since she had had sex and perhaps she ought to persuade him to see her more often...
If it had not been for that bloody awful tawse, she might never have found a man who could so satisfy her in the sexual field...

Saturday, 21 October 2017

Moments in C.P. History - Number 14: Martha Douglas

Final part of the series by Paul Melrose, from Februs 45
The United States, throughout its history, has long had a tradition of corporal punishment and even today, when ‘civilised’ Europe has made the use of beating illegal in prisons and schools, the US continues to exercise ‘state’s rights’ in the application of corporal punishment, particularly in its schools, to both males and females should the public be perceived to favour it, thus there is no common policy across the country.
Why then, you may ask, is ‘Moments’ going back to the schoolrooms of the United States of nearly 200 years ago, to 1823 in fact, when CP is so prevalent in the country’s schools today? Well the reason is that the case in point created a flurry of attention for a number of reasons and eventually led to a change in the law of the state concerned.
In the United States today, most of the states which allow school beating, in the form of the paddle, are in the deep south and, sadly, a disproportionate number of the recipients are black.
The case of Martha Douglas back in 1823 was very different both in the nature of the state, the background of the girl concerned and the nature of the punishment. She was a white girl, a middle-class grocer’s daughter, well educated and living in Massachusetts, a state which, despite its notoriety during the witchcraft hearings, was regarded as civilised and ‘decent’... a far cry from the ‘country hicks’ down south. The ripples from the Douglas case changed American perceptions for a time, the resultant furore and highlighted legal anomalies keeping the lawyers busy for a long time.
Martha Anne Douglas was born into a well-to-do household in Cambridge, Massachusetts in 1805, an attractive and intelligent girl whose parents had always taught her to respect her elders, to be polite but to stand up for herself, honestly and firmly. The young girl took the words of her parents to heart and grew up to be a daughter of whom they could be proud. At the time of the incident in question, Martha Douglas was one month short of her 18th birthday, a young woman rather than a child, and already ‘walking out’ with a young man with marriage a distinct possibility in the not too distant future. Until then Martha had to behave like any other obedient schoolgirl studying hard for her examinations.
She was a keen and enthusiastic attendee at the Leonard Rushmore Public School in Cambridge where she received glowing reports of her attitude and application. Like most public schools the classes were mixed ones with boys and girls equally divided.
The school employed an English teacher named Jessica Stowe and rumour had it that Mrs Stowe was not over-enamoured of Martha Douglas, considering the girl to be too smart, too ready with a quick answer and, in effect, a show-off. Such feelings were maybe a recipe for what was to occur on the fateful day in May during Jessica Stowe’s English class.
During her lesson, Mrs Stowe heard what she later described to a packed courtroom as whispering and giggling from behind her as she wrote on the blackboard. She also swore that the voice, which was unmistakable, belonged to Martha Douglas. She turned round and ordered Martha to walk out to the front of the class and extend the palm of her hand for one stroke of a thin cane.
It was now that the girl’s parental advice, to be honest and stand up for herself, were to prove her undoing. Red-faced with embarrassment, the girl rose to her feet and said politely ‘Ma’am I have done nothing to be punished for’. Aghast at this show of insolence, Jessica Stowe demanded that the girl come out to the front where the punishment would be increased to three strokes for her insubordination. Close to tears, Martha remained defiantly in her place and muttered ‘With respect, Ma’am, no I will not! I am guilty of no offence.’ The class was now buzzing for no pupil had dared to behave in this way before.
Jessica Stowe, white-faced with rage, stormed out of the classroom and returned some ten minutes later accompanied by the male Principal and two other male teachers. Whatever story Mrs Stowe had told must have been convincing because at the behest of the Principal, the two teachers grabbed Martha and dragged her kicking and screaming to the front of the class where she was forcibly stretched across the teacher’s desk by one of the male helpers.
As the girl shrieked in horror and shame, the other teacher pulled up her long skirt and petticoats while the Principal untied the strings of her drawers and pulled them down, baring her bottom to the entire mixed class. Producing a birch rod, he then told Martha she would receive a punishment she would remember all her life, then delivered twelve scorching strokes of the birch to the girl’s naked buttocks as she wept and squealed. When the punishment was over she was made to stand in the corner, red bottom on display for the rest of the lesson.
When the lesson was over, risking further punishment, the humiliated Martha fled from school and went home, collapsing in hysterics into the arms of her mother. When the facts were known and the damage inspected, Mrs Douglas sent for the magistrate. As a result the three male participants in the affair were arrested and charged with indecent abuse of a minor.
The court case lasted three weeks and the legal wrangles went back and forth as the prosecution argued that the laws of Massachusetts had clearly been broken in that the whipping of females on the bare buttocks was forbidden by statute. Defence lawyers argued that a school is ‘a state within a state’ where decrees affecting the judicial treatment of females do not apply. They argued that the school had a written constitution and a clearly evident corporal punishment policy.
The prosecution then replied that this did not cover the bare bottom punishment of pupils and in full public view of the opposite sex too, that the teachers had exceeded their authority and committed a punishable offence. The defence replied that the corporal punishment policy was deliberately non-specific in order to allow situations such as that of this ‘unruly girl’ to be dealt with in the appropriate manner and that all parents who valued the preservation of in loco parentis authority would support the action of the Principal and his staff. They argued that the laws of the State had no place in this matter and that, unless wilful and malicious cruelty could be proved, the school was within its rights to punish the girl as it saw fit.
The defence argument won the day and the three teachers were acquitted without a stain on their characters. The arguments about the decision raised hackles in the US press with the Conservative newspapers supporting the decision and the Liberals calling it an outrage.
Martha Douglas’ parents appealed against the verdict but to no avail. They then sued privately and lost that too, the girl now forced to leave school after so much notoriety meant she could no longer expect to receive fair and unbiased treatment.
Although she lost the battle, in the long term, Martha Douglas and her family won the war, although a little late to save Martha from humiliation and indignity. The Massachusetts Senate, embarrassed by the adverse publicity, brought forward at its next sitting a bill which encompassed the State’s public schools and which expressly forbade the corporal punishment of pupils of either sex on the naked buttocks either in public or in private.

Moments in C.P. History - Number 13: Theroigne de Mericourt

Penultimate part of the series by Paul Melrose, from Februs 44
Theroigne de Mericourt was born Anne-Joseph Mericourt into a rich Liege family in 1762. Her upbringing was chaste and modest, the young girl brought up in the Church by God-fearing parents. It was their intention that their young daughter should take holy orders and indeed she took instruction for four years in her teens with a view to entering a convent. However, it was not to be for Anne-Joseph Mericourt, who had blossomed into a truly beautiful young woman, decided that the cloistered life of the convent was not for her.
To the chagrin of her devoted parents Anne-Joseph decided, in 1784, to seek her fame and fortune in Paris, for her beauty had attracted much favourable comment. She changed her name to Theroigne, presumable because she felt that Anne-Joseph lacked a little glamour. It was not long before she became the favourite of the Paris Opera set, always seen at opening nights, always the Belle of the Ball. She was befriended by Tenducci, a well-known opera singer of the time though it is not suggested that they were lovers, Tenducci’s homosexuality being an open secret. Through his influence however, Theroigne met many influential Parisians including the Marquis de Persan whose mistress she soon became.
The chaste and virtuous Anne-Joseph from Liege could no longer be recognised for Theroigne had fallen in love with power and influence. Not content with one lover, she soon began to sell her charms to the highest bidder, in essence becoming a very rich and beautiful prostitute. Although seduced by the wealth and influence of the bourgeoisie, Theroigne was no fool and took due heed of the storm clouds gathering over France. She began to acquire friends among the leaders of the proletariat and, it is said, became the lover of Marat, who was captivated by her beauty and her wit.
In 1789, the French Revolution broke out and Theroigne de Mericourt’s life changed for ever. On the morning of October 5th 1789, an amazing crowd of 6,000 women walked the 12 miles from Paris to Versailles in freezing cold and rain in order to lay siege to the Royal Palace. En route, the motley crew of women looted shops, broke windows, attacked anyone suspected of opposing the revolution and stole transport to assist their journey. Theroigne de Mericourt became the centre of attention on the march by turning up at some point on a jet black horse and wearing a fashionable riding hat and blood red riding coat. She carried pistols and a sabre, immediately riding to the front of the march and proclaiming herself its leader. The effect on the predominantly male leaders of the revolution was electric and Theroigne de Mericourt, the lover of Jean-Paul Marat was a folk heroine.
To the other women, most of them of fairly coarse and poor stock, her impact was greeted with somewhat less enthusiasm. There were angry suggestions that she had spent most of the march in a café applying her make-up and changing her clothes for she looked as fresh as a daisy amid the bedraggled horde. Dark mutterings about this ‘stuck-up whore’ who knew which side her bread was buttered were rife and many of the women resolved to make due restitution when the occasion presented itself.
After the march was over and the revolutionary leaders celebrated their success, Theroigne was hailed ‘Amazon’ of the Revolution and given responsibility for the revolutionary education of women across Paris. She became a significant figure for two or three years until her constant carping on behalf of women for more power and influence finally severed the patience of the Revolutionary leaders, her relationship with Marat coming to an end and her influence decidedly on the wane.
In 1793, Theroigne de Mericourt’s life became a living hell. Dissatisfied with the progress made under the Revolutionary leaders, Paris was in ferment and what is now known as the Terror began. Aristocrats were brought in tumbrils daily to Madame Guillotine and the first revolutionary leaders themselves were arrested and executed. Marat, Theroigne’s erstwhile lover and mentor was murdered by Charlotte Corday and soon Robespierre was to fall from grace. Frightened by the turn of events, Theroigne took refuge in a small convent  near her home but it was to be of little use. Hordes of rampaging, angry women were roaming Paris and soon the whereabouts of Theroigne were discovered. All the pent-up anger of the march 6 years before was let loose and the cry went up to teach the ‘stuck up whore’ a lesson.
Using a subterfuge, three of the women gained access to the convent and dragged the shrieking Theroigne out on to the street. A crowd soon gathered and a mob of about forty or fifty screaming women frogmarched the terrified Theroigne down the street and across to the Tuileries Garden, the beautiful gardens by the Seine. The crowd was now swelled to hundreds as poor Theroigne was dragged through the gardens until the crowd reached the base of the Terrasse des Feuillants. Theroigne was forcibly dragged up the steps until at the top she was in full view of a crowd of hundreds.
As she shrieked in terror, the women began to tear off her clothing piece by piece until she was completely naked. Then a bench was turned upside down and Theroigne forced across it, her hands and feet secured to the slats, her legs pulled wide apart. Then the women, armed with straps and whips, began to thrash Theroigne’s bottom in a frenzy, the poor woman screaming in agony after only a few blows. This was not enough for these wild women however, the beating continuing for some considerable time until Theroigne’s bottom was pulped and bleeding. Then someone screamed that the whore should feel it where it hurts, the women beginning to concentrate their attention on her vagina, whipping her mercilessly until she passed out.
Only then did some of the Tricoteuses, the people’s police, in the crowd rush up onto the terrace steps and put an end to proceedings.
After receiving treatment for her terrible wounds, Theroigne recovered physically but never mentally, finally going mad from the shame of the proceedings. She was incarcerated in the lunatic asylums of Bicetre and Charenton for twenty years. Such was the mental consequence of her whipping that, as soon as she could escape the attention of her keepers, she would dash into the yard, strip naked and begin to whip her own buttocks and vagina with anything that came to hand, many times ending up in the asylum hospital with dreadful injuries.
Poor Theroigne, a woman whose life had begun with so much promise, finished in shame and degradation, the memory of her public whipping having scarred her mentally for life.  She died, still in a mental institution, at the age of 55 in 1817.

Moments in C.P. History - Number 12: Catherine the Great

Twelfth part of the series by Paul Melrose, from Februs 43
Catherine the Second of Russia, later to be known as Catherine the Great, was born Sophia Augusta Fredericka, Princess of Auhalt-Zerbst on 2nd May 1729 in Stettin, Prussia. Her father was Prince Christian August, a general in the Prussian army but the driving force in the young Sophia’s eventual rise to fame was her mother, Princess Johanna Elizabeth, a woman of great ambition.
The seeds of influence were sown early when Prince Karl August, one of Princess Johanna’s brothers, became engaged to Elizabeth, the Empress of Russia, but the boy died unexpectedly in 1727 before any nuptials could be arranged. Johanna’s cousin, Karl Frederick, had also married the daughter of Peter the Great, so the strength of relationship between the Prussian and Russian courts was firmly established by the early part of the 18th century.
When Empress Elizabeth sought a wife for her son and successor, Peter III, much deep and earnest correspondence ensued between Elizabeth and the Prussian Princess Johanna with the result that, on January 1st 1744, the young Sophia and her mother were invited to St. Petersburg by Elizabeth and her son. Sophia was then just fourteen years old. The Empress was delighted by the young Sophia for she found a very attractive young girl, intelligent and perceptive beyond her years. Thus it was agreed that, subject to Sophia’s conversion to the Russian Orthodox Church, the girl would marry Peter. As part of the conversion process, Sophia had to be given a new name ordained by the Empress and Elizabeth chose to call the girl ‘Catherine’ in honour of her own mother.
Peter III proved to be a sickly young man and had several bouts of serious illness during Catherine’s visit, and had survived a serious bout of measles in 1743 which left him sterile. This fact appears to have been withheld from Catherine until well after the two were married on 2nd August 1745.
Marriage thus proved to be a horror for Catherine. Her role was to produce a male heir and it didn’t happen. She began to feel guilty and fractious, leaning on only a few trusted advisors and friends. She saw little of her husband, spending her time riding horses and reading the works of Voltaire. A few months into the marriage, the Empress Elizabeth reorganised Catherine’s court circle, dismissing many of the girl’s close friends and replacing them with advisors of her own choosing. One of these was Sergei Saltykov, a long time friend of the Empress and, many dared only whisper, probably more than that. Saltykov had a reputation as a strong and virile ladies man who was encouraged by Empress Elizabeth to become close to the young Princess Catherine. It soon became clear to the young girl what her mother-in-law was doing and she acceded to the Empress’s clear desire that she take Saltykov to her bed in order to produce a child, a task for which her husband was incapable.
After two miscarriages Catherine finally gave birth to a son on 20th September 1754, the child being named Paul. The fact that the child was a boy took all the weight of expectation from Catherine’s shoulders and allowed her greater freedom of movement and a chance to study English, at which she rapidly became fluent.
In 1761 the now ailing Empress Elizabeth died on Christmas Day and Peter III became Emperor of Russia. If his health was not a big enough handicap, Peter lacked any political savvy and consequently, during his period of waiting to step into his mother’s shoes, had made himself very unpopular. Catherine, his wife, on the other hand, had steadfastly cultivated her own friends, her own advisors and her own ‘court’ and, amazingly for someone who was a foreigner, was very popular throughout Russia.
Catherine was advised, even before Elizabeth was laid to rest, to overthrow her husband and take the Russian throne but she sought various counsel and decided against it.
The coup was not long in coming, however, and by June 1762, Catherine and her advisors realised that there could be no further prevarication for the situation in the country was becoming ever more hostile to Peter so, on 28th June 1762, Catherine led a march through St Petersburg which picked up support and momentum along the way. Peter and his mistress escaped from the city to a country retreat where, on July 6th, he was tracked down by Catherine’s agents and murdered. It became clear that Count Alexei Orloff, one of Catherine’s most trusted advisors, had conspired with her in this murder but she justified it on the grounds that Russian independence was threatened by the Prussian links of her late husband..... of which she, of course, was the first!
Catherine was crowned on Sunday 22nd September 1762 in the Kremlin and proceeded to install all her trusted advisors in key positions, including the aforementioned Count Orloff who became Minister of Police and the Interior, a role in which he would exercise more than a slight taste for corporal punishment. Catherine ruled as a benign dictator who, in fact, scrapped the death penalty and brought in some enlightened social legislation.
If Catherine was basically a benign and enlightened despot, there were two areas in which she would have no patience or sympathy. One was her lack of regard for anyone who, whether through foolishness or malice, might betray Russia, and the other was anyone who would spread malicious gossip about Catherine herself. Catherine had ample cause to worry on both counts for revolts and minor uprisings were rife in the early years of her reign and her propensity for affairs with countless men left her vulnerable to attack. In both areas her wrath was manifested through severe physical retribution.
An example of such was an incident which followed a masked ball at the Palace of St Petersburg where a very well connected lady, the wife of a senior Russian general, had apparently drunk a little too much and was making very indiscreet remarks concerning Russia’s alliances and her husband’s opinion of them. The ball was attended by a number of foreign dignitaries who could clearly hear some of the lady’s opinions and were not best pleased. The lady’s indiscretions soon came to the ear of Catherine and she passed word to Orloff to get something done about it. The lady was told that her husband, who was away in the army, had left word for her and she was to return home. Unsuspecting, the general’s wife left the ball in the company of Orloff’s men, but instead of being taken home, she was taken to Orloff’s Interior Ministry and down to a basement.
To her horror, she saw that the room contained a vaulting horse and an array of rods and birches. Count Orloff himself came into the room and read her the riot act about loose tongues undermining the Empress and the State. To her shame and horror, the frightened lady was told to strip naked, at which she protested violently, citing her position in society and her husband’s rank. Orloff told her, in no uncertain terms, that her husband would have no military rank if she did not do as she was told and, as far as her position in society was concerned, the punishment had been ordained by the Empress Catherine herself, and that her future at court was very much in the balance.
The lady hesitated no longer and stripped naked, then was firmly strapped down over the vaulting horse. On Orloff’s command, she was birched soundly until her shrieks rang round the room and her bottom was red raw. She was then released, allowed to dress, and sent home with a warning that any repeat of such injudicious behaviour would result in imprisonment.
An example of what happened when Catherine’s personal trust was betrayed can be illustrated by the experience of one of her most trusted Maids Of Honour. The girl was responsible for the Empress’s intimate dressing and bathing, thus of course found herself privy to some very private secrets including the sight of certain of Catherine’s lovers arriving and departing the boudoir. The girl was engaged to be married and could not resist passing some juicy tittle-tattle to her fiance who, in turn, repeated it at one of his dining clubs in St Petersburg. Inevitably the gossip got back to the Empress who was livid with rage. Instead of reacting immediately, Catherine bided her time until the girl’s wedding. After the happy couple had retired to the bedroom to consummate their marriage, the bedroom was forced open by six men of Catherine’s personal bodyguard. Without ceremony, the sheets were stripped from the naked couple and the girl dragged out of bed. She was ‘horsed’ on the back of one of the guards while another birched her bottom mercilessly. The helpless husband was ordered to kneel naked and watch the proceedings on his knees.
When the birching was over and the girl was crying in anguish, the couple was told to enjoy their married life and, as far as Catherine was concerned, the flogging was the end of the matter. The couple was told that should any further indiscretions occur, however, both would be sent to a labour camp in Siberia. Needless to say the ‘hint’ was taken seriously.
Catherine’s reign was a difficult one in many ways, yet she ruled Russia for over thirty years. Although she had her critics, she was greatly loved for her enlightened social policies and her military wisdom. Her final years were haunted by illness and depression, including a loss of faith in her son, Paul, who she attempted to have removed from the line of inheritance. The attempts failed and the now ailing Catherine died, following a stroke, on 5th November 1796. Her son did indeed inherit the throne of Russia, immediately tried to reverse many of his mother’s reforms, and in fact, restored the memory of his ‘father’, Peter III, holding a new lying-in ceremony so that Peter was buried next to his wife in the Peter and Paul Cathedral of St Petersburg.

Moments in C.P. History - Number 11: Jeanne Du Barry and Caroline de Rozen

Eleventh part of the series by Paul Melrose, from Februs 42
The future Countess du Barry was born on August 19th 1743 in Vaucoleurs, France, as humble Jeanne Becu, a child born out of wedlock to a pastry cook named Annie Becu. It is suggested that Jeanne’s father may well have been a friar who served as spiritual advisor to the local convent (the irony is not lost!) a man named Jean Baptiste Gormand of Vaubernier who was certainly Annie Becu’s lover.
Thanks to the friar’s influence, Jeanne had a better education than she might have expected at the convent of Saint-Aure in Paris. At fifteen she left school and took on several positions as lady’s maid to the wealthy and influential, thus she had access to the nobility of Paris. In 1763 she met a notorious rake named Jean du Barry, and eventually became his mistress. He was known in Paris as ‘Jean the Vile’ and was frequently interviewed by the police for his custom of prostituting his lovers, Jeanne Becu included. It appears from journals written to friends that Jeanne had begun to loathe the degradation into which she had sunk and was anxious to attain more respectability.
In 1768, Jeanne Becu was introduced at court and came to the attention of Louis XV who was immediately attracted to her and wanted her as his mistress. Convention at the time decreed that, in order to deflect gossip, a mistress had to be a married woman who would thus arrive at court with her husband, the husband then presumably waiting patiently while the King dallied with his wife, and would then, dutifully, take her home. Decorum was thus preserved. So Jeanne Becu married Guillaume Barry, the brother of her procurer, Jean, in order to become one of Louis XV’s many mistresses. Her future was thus secured and she became a woman of some influence.
Jeanne du Barry became a patron of the arts and a known protector of artists and intellectuals. She was an attractive, excitable woman of strong passions and little patience. It is said that she made friends easily thanks to her outward-going nature and easy laughter, but frequently lost them again thanks to her jealousy and sensitivity to perceived slights.
Among the many contacts the Countess du Barry made at court were the Countess of Provence and her teenage lady-in-waiting, Caroline, Marchioness de Rozen. While the relationship between the two Countesses was never more than cordial at best, Jeanne du Barry formed an immediate attachment to the pretty young lady-in-waiting who was eighteen or nineteen at the time of their first meeting. It appears to have been reciprocal for the young Marchioness appeared to revel in the company of the vivacious Jeanne du Barry. So much so that the two became firm friends, the young Caroline always being on Du Barry’s guest list for every social function. There was no suggestion of any sexual liaison, they were like two sisters, happy in each others company, and the young Marchioness would boast to her friends that she was one of Jeanne du Barry’s favourites, never far away when she was needed and always present at every glittering ball and social function.
Given natural human jealousy and possessiveness, such an idyllic existence could not last for ever and the Countess of Provence, who had watched the developing friendship with growing anger, finally put her foot down. She told her young lady-in-waiting, in no uncertain terms, that this close friendship with Du Barry had to stop. It was, she told the girl, demeaning for herself to be excluded from so many functions to which the young Marchioness was invited and that the girl was not to continue the friendship any longer. Frightened of the wrath of her mentor, the Marchioness ignored future invitations to any of Du Barry’s social occasions and, when compelled to go to the Palace with her own mistress, treated Jeanne du Barry with coldness and indifference.
Jeanne was furious and very upset by this snub and complained to Louis XV about the slight she had received. The King, most probably in jest, replied that the Marchioness was little more than a child with all the temperamental vagaries of a child. He apparently suggested that ‘a taste of the rod would do that little thing no harm’ and chuckled that he wouldn’t mind watching Caroline’s young bottom get a taste of it either!
Whether this was intended to be taken seriously or not, the angry Jeanne du Barry took him at his word. She sent a message to the young Marchioness asking if she could visit in secret the next morning as there were important matters that needed to be discussed relating to her future at court, suggesting it would be to her benefit if she could get away. Flattered by the hint, and undoubtedly curious, Caroline made some excuse to her mistress and took a carriage into Paris to Du Barry’s sumptuous home.
In the meantime, Jeanne du Barry had informed the King that, if he were to arrive in secret and hide behind a dressing screen in her boudoir, he might see something to his liking. Puzzled, but happy to play his lover’s games the King duly arrived and took his place behind the screen.
Downstairs, an apparent reconciliation had been effected with Jeanne and the young Marchioness breakfasting together amid great cordiality. Once the repast was over, Jeanne du Barry told her young guest that there were documents pertaining to her future role at court in Jeanne’s boudoir and that they should go up there with all haste. Suspecting nothing, Caroline de Rozen followed the Countess into her bedroom whereupon the door was rapidly slammed shut and four very strong chambermaids grabbed the young Marchioness and dragged her, screaming, over to the bed where she was thrown face down.
As the girl shrieked in fear and shame, at a word from Jeanne du Barry, her long skirts and petticoats were hoisted up high on her back, completely baring her bottom. Jeanne then angrily told the girl this was the price for snubbing the Countess du Barry, and that, after today’s experience, she would never do such a thing again.
Before the delighted eyes of the King secreted behind the screen, while two of the maids held the struggling Caroline, the other two picked up stout birch rods and began to whip the young Marchioness across her bare buttocks very severely until the skin broke and little spots of blood began to run down her thighs. At this point Jeanne du Barry ordered that the whipping be stopped and the girl be allowed to rise. This she did with great difficulty, weeping hysterically before fleeing back to her carriage and home... presumably kneeling all the way!
Unable to tell her mistress, the Countess of Provence, what had happened for she had broken a promise and would be in more trouble, Caroline de Rozen wrote directly to the King complaining about her treatment. She received a reply, apparently sympathetic, saying he would question Jeanne du Barry on the matter , but that of course he would be unable to do anything unless Caroline was prepared to come to court and display the evidence to him. Such a humiliating proposal made it obvious to the Marchioness that her complaint was falling on deaf ears, and she sought advice from her friends on what to do next.
All, without exception, suggested that she make up with Jeanne du Barry with all haste for the Countess was too powerful an enemy to confront, and Caroline took the advice. She wrote to Jeanne asking if she could visit once more, apologising for past slights and confessing that her chastisement was no more than she deserved.
Delighted by the success of her actions, Jeanne was pleased to welcome back her young friend and agreed that the friendship would continue in secret in order that the Countess of Provence would not be discomfited in any way, and so it was done.
In 1774, Louis XV died and, for some time, Jeanne du Barry became a forgotten figure in France. Not one to let the grass grow under her feet for long, she courted the new power in the land, the Duke of Brissac and became his lover of many years. In 1789, the French Revolution began and Jeanne began to make many trips to London, ostensibly to secure her jewellery in safe banks. She made contact with a number of exiled aristocrats while in England, a very dangerous practice, which led eventually to her downfall and death. The Revolutionary Government considered her actions as treacherous and, in 1793, Jeanne du Barry was arrested and charged with working against the revolution.
She was sentenced to death and on 8th December 1793, at the age of fifty, the Countess Jeanne du Barry went to the guillotine. She did not meet impending death with any great courage or dignity (and who could blame her!), collapsing several times in the tumbril en route to the guillotine and screaming to the crowd from the platform ‘Why do you want to hurt me? Why?’ and eventually becoming so hysterical that she was difficult to restrain. The last words she ever spoke are probably her most famous, ‘Encore un moment, monsieur le bourreau, un petit moment,’ (‘One moment more, executioner, one little moment’) and then the blade did its work.