The cross was painful enough, but to crucify this "criminal," the Romans made it altogether excruciating.

Traditionally, the Romans attached criminals to their crosses with ropes; using spikes was an added instance of cruelty. Setting a crown of thorns - sharp enough and strong enough to literally dig beneath the skin - onto Jesus' head was a further act of hateful malice, completely unnecessary and without precedent. The cross was painful enough, but to crucify this "criminal," the Romans made it altogether excruciating.