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“Waking a Witch.”

If a “witch” was obdurate, the most effectual way of obtaining a confession was by what was termed “waking her.” For this purpose an iron bridle or hoop was bound across her face with four prongs thrust into her mouth. The “bridle” was fastened behind to the wall by a chain in such a manner that the victim was unable to lie down; and in this position she was kept sometimes for several days, while men were constantly by to keep her awake. In Scotland some of these bridles are still preserved.

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Entry taken from Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, edited by the Rev. E. Cobham Brewer, LL.D. and revised in 1895.

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Wag Beards (To)
Wages
Wages of Sin (The)
Wagoner
Wahabites
Waifs and Strays
Waistcoat
Waiters upon Providence
Waits
Wake
“Waking a Witch.”
Walbrook Ward (London)
Walcheren Expedition
Waldemar’s Way
Waldenses
Waldo
Wales
Walk (in Hudibras)
Walk Chalks
Walk Spanish
Walk not in the Public Ways

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Witch’s Bridle