Monday, June 2, 2014

The Spanking A-Z Blog Challenge: B is for Birching Rod

Sticking with the Victorian theme for another day...  the birching rod.

During the 64 year reign of Queen Victoria, there were very strict societal rules for the deportment of men and women.  For women, the emphasis was on purity, refinement and domesticity.  Truly considered the weaker sex, their place was in the home in a domestic, subservient role with the man as the head of the household.  As such, it was lawful and often considered dutiful for the man to correct his women, including his wife, daughters and female servants.  In fact, the "rule of thumb" comes from actual laws on the books where it was acceptable to beat one's wife as long as the stick was no wider than the width of the man's thumb.

While these practices were outlawed by the end of the 19th century both here and in the U.K., the practice continues in many third world countries today.  In Western cultures, it is less common and is often in the context of consensual agreements such as Christian Domestic Discipline and Taken In Hand relationships or as sexual role play and foreplay.  And of course, if the practice between consenting adults is safe, sane, and consensual... Who are we as spankophiles to argue?

Some of the infamous tools of the Victorian disciplinarian included the cane, the birch rod and ginger root, aka figging.  Today, I am going to discuss my fascination with the birch rod.  (If you like, leave a comment and I will return on future posts to discuss the others.)

As you can see, the birch rod is not actually a rod, but a bundle of twigs.  

Birch rods were typically used in the home for domestic discipline.  The larger, heavier rods reserved for strapping young lads and the lighter, whippier rods for the women of the household.  But don't think the ladies got off easy, because the lighter the rod, the faster it could be wielded and thereby increasing the sting.

The rods were ideal when cut fresh.  They were known to dry out quickly, becoming stiff and brittle.  It was often inconvenient to make a fresh birch each day, unless you had one of the servants do it for you, so it was discovered that if the rod was soaked in a brine bath of salt, it would keep the twigs supple and provide an antiseptic benefit.  Thus, when the master of the house decided it was time to administer some much needed discipline to a naughty bottom, it was ready and available.

How does this rather rustic implement feel on the skin you ask?  It depends on the skill of the Master.  It can range from a mild, even pleasurable wispy sensation, or create a fiery sting, as is its reputation.  If punishment is the goal, added strokes and effort can make this tool quite effective when applied to a recalcitrant subordinate.

Be warned - like a freshly cut switch, if employed with a heavy hand, reddened welts and crisscrossing lines that break the skin can result, so take care.  Remember; safe, sane, and consensual - as always -  is the goal.

Today, birch rods, aka brooms are available for purchase and have advanced a bit.  Made of bamboo and polyurethane rods, as above, I'm sure these wicked little implements produce a sting equal to, if not more so, than their predecessors.  Yeow!

Here is an interesting blog with a brief spanking history if you'd like to read more:  Brief Spanking History

Here is an excerpt from the birching scene in Surrender Your Grace.  Enjoy!

Ignoring her groan of protest, he stepped behind her and picked up the birch rod ready to apply it to her exposed skin.   “This birch rod has been soaking in a brine bath which keeps the limbs supple and acts as a disinfectant.” 

The first brush of the birch rod landed and Cici was surprised at the negligible sting which was more like a mild scratching sensation. She relaxed, thinking she could bear this. 

Andrew labored away behind her. The birch making a steady swishing noise as he applied the whippy branches across her entire bottom and upper thighs. 

"You’ve had about ten strokes now and your pale cheeks are beginning to take on a nice pink hue.  As the rod strikes already tender skin, you will begin to feel a different sensation soon enough.”

As soon as those words left his mouth, she started to feel a heated, burning sensation.  She mumbled around the leather in her mouth, “It's stinging terribly, Andrew.”

He paused to check her skin condition and found nothing to be concerned about, so he continued.  “Bite down on the leather, Cecilia.”  He landed another series of steady swishing blows; the intensity the same as the first stroke.  “This rod consists of a dozen or so limbs, the more limbs, the more spring as it lands against your cheeks which reduces the impact so you don’t bruise.  I want you to feel the sting and heat, not bruise or injure you after all.”

Biting down on the leather, her response was mumbled gibberish.

Leaning over, he removed the bit and asked her to repeat herself.  Panting for air as her bottom blazed, she shook her head, “I’d rather not.”

“It wasn’t an option, wife.  What did you say?”  He slapped her burning bottom with his large open palm, one smack to each cheek.  A tear rolled down her cheek, which he brushed away gently with his thumb.  His firm tone belied the gently caress.  “I’m waiting.”

“I said, how considerate of you, My Lord.” 

Sass, right in the middle of a punishment? His naughty wife was giving him lip.  He couldn’t believe it, but still he was amused.  Reinserting the bit, he moved back to her bottom where she wouldn’t see his mirth. 

"Your audacity is overwhelming, and very imprudent.  We aren’t through with your thrashing by half and yet you dare to sass me like an impertinent chit.”

“I’m sorry, My Lord, but I did say I’d rather not repeat it.”

A chuckle of laughter escaped at that.  “So you did, my dear.  So you did. 

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