Just in time for the holidays! My friend Jack Mord bought this amazing little toy from the UK via eBay, a gruesome reminder of one of the world's rarest and most awful forms of execution. Yes, this really happened to people -- Listverse, who in a post titled "Top 10 Gruesome Methods of Execution" listed sawing as #1, writes:

In Execution by sawing, the criminal would be hung upside-down and a large saw would be used to cut their body in half, starting with the groin, all the way to the head. Because the person was hanging upside-down, the brain received sufficient blood to keep them alive until the saw finally reached the main blood vessels in the abdomen. In the Asian version of this execution, the victim would stand upright and the sawing would begin at the top of the head.

Some traditions state that the Prophet Isaiah was executed by the saw. It is believed that Saint Paul is making reference to this in his Epistle to the Hebrews 11:37: "They were stoned, they were cut asunder, they were tempted, they were put to death by the sword, they wandered about in sheepskins, in goatskins, being in want, distressed, afflicted."

This method of execution was used in the Middle East, Europe, and parts of Asia. It was also used in the Roman Empire and was considered to be the favorite punishment dished out by Emperor Caligula.

Imagine the kids' faces when they find this under the tree on Christmas morning. Sheer delight! Check out all the gory details in the super-sized version.