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The Scold's Bridle (1994) is a crime novel by Englishmarker writer Minette Walters. The book, Walters' third, won a CWA Gold Dagger and was made into a BBC series starring Miranda Richardson and Bob Peck.


Mathilda Gillespie, an eccentric recluse known for her incredible meanness of nature, is found dead in her bathtub, her wrists slashed and her head locked inside a so-called 'scold's bridle', a rusted cage built with tongue clamps which was used as a torture device throughout the middle ages. The dead woman's only friend, Dr. Sarah Blakeney, becomes prime suspect in her murder after police discover that she's been left a great deal of money in the will. To clear her name, Sarah delves deep into Mathilda's mysterious past, and subsequently unravels an intricate web of greed, abuse and depravity.

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