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Rare 17th C Hooded German Executioners Mask

$5,600.00 $3,995.00

Description

Mask of hammered sheet iron in the form of a man’s face with cutouts for eyes, nostrils,
and mouth. Forged with the shape of a mustache with punched holes at the ends,
possibly for the attachment of a horse hair mustache. Attached hand dyed woven wool
hood, sewn with gut cord through punched holes along the edge of the mask. Old
museum identification number inside hood. Worn by executioners when fulfilling state
torture, burning, hanging, beheadings, etc. Much superstition was attached to executions
and masks were thought to protect the wearer from any evil that could be passed on from
the condemned. Executioners and their families were feared and shunned, often forced
to live in seclusion. Surviving examples of executioner’s tools of the trade are scarce,
most having been destroyed due to the fear of attached evil, and few are preserved in
museums and private torture collections. This mask was purchased from a large justice
and torture collection along with a beheading axe form Karlsruhe, Germany. A macabre
relic from mankind’s darker superstitious past. Height of iron mask 11″, width 9″. Other
items shown in display not included.