Starting off this macabre list is crucifixion. This was practiced both in the ancient world and as recently as the twentieth century. It was first introduced by the Assyrians and Babylonians, followed by the Persians, Alexander the Great, and the Phoenicians—who initiated it in Rome in the third century BC.
Crucifixion involved being tied or nailed to a wooden beam—or cross. Nails were pierced through the bones below the wrists to bear the weight of the person. It was a “brilliant” placement because no major blood vessels were hit—only the median nerve, which would cause the fingers to seize and the hands to flex down in an excruciating contracture. The feet were nailed to the vertical part of the cross, and once the legs weakened, the arms had to hold up the body, resulting in the shoulders being pulled from their sockets. The elbows and wrists would soon follow, with the arms now several inches longer. At this point, the chest had to bear the body’s weight, triggering respiratory problems, and eventual suffocation.
Jesus Christ – Jesus’ crucifixion took place in Judea in the first century AD. He was arrested, tried, sentenced, flagellated, and then crucified by the Romans.