Birching is a type of corporal punishment where the delinquent is beaten with a bundle of birch twigs, called a birch or a birch rod.
From antiquity throughout the middle ages up to well into the 19th century, birching was very popular for both the punishment of criminal offenders (either given on the back or on the bare buttocks) and for the punishment of children at home and in school. Birching was extensively used in the great public schools, most notably Eton.
In art the birch can be found as far back as 1375. Enjoy this special gallery with artworks from various artists.