A common method to torture victims and extract confessions was denailing.
Generally, the victim would be restrained in a position that allowed the torturer full access to the victim's toes. Depending on the importance of a confession, the torturer could choose to extract each nail rapidly or to extract it as slowly as possible. Sometimes, sharp objects were introduced under the victim's nails before their removal to increase pain.
Denailing was widely used during the inquisition to extract confessions from witches. The instruments required for this torture method could be found anywhere, which made it incredibly popular. Additionally, in the right hands this method could be extraordinarily painful and leave no permanent damage.
This torture method is still being used today in certain countries.