Especially, severe pain inflicted judicially, either as punishment for a crime, or for the purpose of extorting a confession from an accused person, as by water or fire, by the boot or thumbkin, or by the rack or wheel.
the deliberate infliction of extreme physical pain. For much of Western history, torture has been an accepted way of eliciting information, or compelling a confession or simply as punishment. It was used in ancient Greece and Rome, and in European societies up to the eighteenth century. In the U.S., torture was banned in the constitutional rejection of cruel and unusual punishment; and in the nineteenth century European nations decisively rejected the use of torture as a legal procedure. However, in the twentieth century torture has been used by totalitarian and authoritarian regimes around the globe, and it has not, even today, been eradicated.
A form of play that involves intense sensation. This is not necessarily pain. It is usually directed towards a single part of the body. Teasing, which is starting then stopping a particular attention, may be considered torture
Any act by which severe pain or suffering, whether physical or mental, is intentionally inflicted by or at the instigation of an individual (e.g., a public official) or group on a person for such reasons as obtaining from him or her or a third person information or confession, punishing them for an act they have committed or are suspected of having committed, or intimidating him or her or other persons.