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Thread: Corporal Punishment

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  1. #1
    Midnight Storm

    Corporal Punishment

    Quote Originally Posted by Caretaker Argus Filch
    "Approval for Whipping ... Approval for Whipping ... I can do it at last ... they've had it coming to them for years ..."
    So, in 1995, you couldn't physically hurt students, or at least, with a whip. But do you think you ever could have? Maybe before Filch began working there? Even, say, 200 years ago?

    Corporal punishment at school (eg. the cane, the strap), at least over in Australia, wasn't banished that long ago. Victoria, where I'm from, had it prohibited in 1983, according to my English teacher. Just checked Wikipedia, and that says it was completely banned in the UK by 2003. That is not a long time ago.

    So I'm wondering, do you ever think it was around at Hogwarts?

  2. #2
    Seventh Year Gryffindor
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    It may have been completely banned in 2003, but I don't think any schools ever used it past the eighties. It was certainly never allowed in any school I went to, or any I heard about, and I started primary school in 1993 or 1994.

    At Hogwarts I think they probably did used to have that sort of punishment, or else Filch wouldn't have been so keen to bring it back. I wouldn't say that they had it in Marauder Era because we never hear about James or Sirius being hit as a punishment. When Dumbledore or McGonagall was in school they perhaps might have had some form of it. I doubt as gruesom as whipping or those chains he's always on about, but perhaps a cane. The things Filch is talking about probably was used in Medieval times, or never actually used at all. It was common throughout history for boys to be beaten to make them learn their lessons, and the idea of encouraging them rather than hitting them was considered a new idea during the reign of Henry VIII in the sixteenth century.

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  3. #3
    Seventh Year Gryffindor
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    I always imagined that Dumbledore had something to do with abolishing it, or maybe Dippit, because I can definately see Phineas Black believing in corporal punishment, because he has many midieval thoughts.
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  4. #4
    As a contextual side note, Henry VIIIs son, King Edward, was not allowed to be beaten when he was being educated because he was a Prince - so his best friend had to take punishment for him when he did somethign wrong!

    My mum has memories of corpral punishment in school (I'm English) in the 1970s involving canes, a slipper and one crazy nun who used a table tenis bat I imagine at one point Hogwart used a cane or a ruler or something too, although I doubt it ever got as extreme as chains.

    Saying that, it got pretty brutal in DH.

  5. #5
    Well, Dibbit would have been the headmaster while Arthur and Molly were at school, and we know that at least on one occasion, Arthur had 'his backside walloped' when he had snuck out after bed to meet Molly one night.

    So we do know that corporal punishment did occur during the time which Dippit was headmaster, but most likely, Phineas Black would have been more 'enthusiastic' about it.

  6. #6
    I bet 200 years ago they did, like you said, or maybe even 100 years ago. I can't see them using it that often though. Since we're dealing with wizards, I'm sure there's something worse out there they could have used to punish students. I bet Ron would've preferred a good swat on his backside than spending hours scrubbing bedpans in the hospital wing his third year- without magic!

  7. #7
    Wizengamot Hufflepuff
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    Arthur was whipped wasn't he, by the Filch's predecessor (Appollyon Pring). Molly mentions it in GOF when she's reminiscing about her midnight walk with Arthur.

    I think it's quite likely that corporal punishment was available as an option, but probably rarely used. As georgeisholey has said, there would be far worse things they could inflict on them. Umbridge's pen, for instance, was a constant pain - whipping wouldn't last quite that long.

    McGonagall admonishes Fake Moody when he turns Ferret Boy into a ferret, saying something along the lines of it had been explained that Transfiguration wasn't used as a form of punishment. I always wondered if that meant it had been used in the past ... maybe when Moody was a pupil (I know he's Barty, but Barty snr could have told him about it or even Voldy)


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  8. #8
    Sailing Girl
    Well, I know for certain that hitting (by teachers) was still around in the late 1960s, as that was when my Dad was at school. I also know that throwing chalk and board-rubbers was common then, but that is shown in the GOF movie as well. I just thought that as we don't use movie canon, I should verify it.
    Hope I helped!

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