Man Trap from a country estate or large garden

Image of a Victorian period man-trap from a large country estate or garden

Manx National Heritage

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    Museum's Description
    Teacher notes
    • Can you imagine getting caught in this man trap? Ouch! If you stood on one, the sharp metal teeth would spring up and clamp onto your foot. This could do all sorts of damage from nasty cuts to even bone fractures.

      Traps like this were used in orchards and woodlands to deter poachers, it would be hidden in the long grass so a possible trespasser wouldn't see it. The use of man traps like this one grew in the 19th century as increased poverty led to a growth in poaching from big estates.

      The prospect of getting caught in one of these traps was pretty scary and often even a warning sign was enough to deter people.

      They were outlawed in England in 1827 but not on the Isle of White until 1872.
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