Thursday, August 12, 2010
Public Humiliation: The Dunce Cap
The Dunce Cap has a long and interesting origin as a form of public humiliation. During medieval times the Dunce Cap was originally used by a group of scholars led by John Duns Scotus, who's followers were known as duns, or dunsmen. The conically shaped dunce cap was intended to absorb knowledge through the point and funnel it down to the wearer. During the Renaissance period, this idea was eventually proven to be wrong.
One of the early uses of the Dunce Cap as a form of humiliation occurred during the Spanish Inquisition. Individuals accused of heresy would be forced to wear them in public as a way of being marked. This practice continued in schools and the term Dunce soon came to be synonymous with being an idiot or someone who is a slow learner.
My first Mistress began using "silly" hats in conjunction with corner time as a form of punishment very early on in my foray into the D/s lifestyle as an added humiliation and a symbol that I was being punished. My second Mistress incorporated silly hats as a standard uniform since she thought I was better off feeling that type of humiliation all the time rather than just during punishments (I had told her about my previous experiences).
I know there are many Dommes and subs out there that believe in corner time as punishment and I was curious if anyone employed things like these as a standard practice.