Definition of pilliwinks in English:

pilliwinks

plural noun

historical
  • An instrument of torture used for squeezing the fingers.

    • ‘If you can not be reined in, pilliwinks will be applied to set you right.’
    • ‘Other means of torture used in the Tower included the thumbscrew, the boot, the narrow-bore, the iron collar, the pilliwinks, and the brakes, a device used to break the victims' teeth.’

Origin

Late Middle English pyrwykes, pyrewinkes, of unknown origin.

Pronunciation:

pilliwinks

/ˈpɪlɪwɪŋks/