Author Topic: The Shame Flute  (Read 208 times)

Peter Anderson

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The Shame Flute
« on: January 10, 2020, 05:41:51 pm »
The Flute of Shame

In the Middle Ages, the Shame Flute was used to punish bad performers, and especially musicians, in the Middle Ages
It was a medieval torture device that was used for publicly shaming bad musicians and other disturbers of the peace.
The contraption, was a heavy iron flute, although it looked more like a clarinet:as shackled to the musician’s neck.


It was shackled to the musician’s neck and then his fingers were clamped to the keys, to give the impression that they were actually playing the instrument.


Finally, to further enhance their humiliation, they were forced, while still wearing the shame flute, to parade around town, just so that the public could throw rotten food and vegetables at them.   It was like a mobile stocks.

At the time, it was considered a fitting punishment for crimes against music.

But the Shame Flute wasn’t just used to punish bad musicians, as it was used on pretty much any public performer whose work was considered objectionable.
For any entertainer in the Middle Ages, the flute of shame was the ultimate punishment for not spending enough time in the practice room.


Today, you can find an original Shame Flute, or Schand Flöte, in the Medieval Crime Museum in Rothenburg, Germany.
There’s also one in Amsterdam’s Torture Museum.


I am sure we can all recommend certain musicians, who should wear the Flute of Shame in 2020.

I am glad we live in a detached property, or my neighbours may think I qualify to wear one of these!

I did discover this Finnish trio, who happen to call themselves, The Flute of Shame.

They specialise in modern progressive and hard rock, as well as blues and soul.

Considering Finland is the only nation in the world to celebrate a National Failure Day, this group seems to fit in well.

If you don't believe me, about Finland having a National Failure Day, then Click on this link:


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