Archive:Football (punishment)

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Footballs found in three historical Boorian settlements

The Football, also known as Ghoghonatamatra or Netiirkoolu, is a rudimentary instrument for punishment in the form of a stone ball, and was widely used by the Boorians and related groups from roughly 600 BCE to 600 CE, while the oldest known football is dated to around 1100 BCE. They varied in diameter from around 40 to 90 cm, and usually weighed 120 kg or more. Depending on their original location and importance, some were painted or chiseled. Only a handful of original footballs have survived to the current day.

The criminal was ordered to kick the football as hard as they could. Depending on the type and severity of the crime, Boorian law stated that at least four kicks and at most twenty kicks could be inflicted by the person's foot, although once the foot was visibly broken, remaining kicks were usually written off. As the punishment is inflicted by oneself, this sometimes lead to refusal to cooperate, a crime punishable by degutturation. Punishment by football was not universal, and was imposed for specific crimes only, with the intended result being that the criminal could not commit any further instances of the crime they were convicted for. For example, smugglers, rapists, robbers, and people with second-time convictions of theft were often punished with four to ten kicks by one foot, while more serious crimes such as espionage or desertion almost always resulted in twenty kicks, sometimes divided across both feet.

The football was also used as a weight to crush parts of the body with, although this was never done as a punishment, and only as a form of torture.