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Belt made of spiked metal, Europe, 1501-1800

This belt of spiked metal was worn around the thigh as a type of penance. Penance in the form of prayers is carried out by some Christians in the hope of being forgiven for their sins. Christian belief during 1501-1800 taught that illness and disease were the result of sin. Penance was carried out by fasting and, in some cases, by inflicting physical harm on one’s self. At the time of the Black De…