Punishment, especially physical punishment exacted in retribution for a crime. Also more generally: torture, torment, suffering.
Mid 17th century; earliest use found in George Buck (fl. 1623–1646). From (i) French supplice punishment, torture, torment, suffering (1480 in eternelz supplices (plural) denoting the torments of hell; end of the 15th cent. denoting both terrible physical suffering and (in extended use) extreme anguish; already in the second quarter of the 13th cent. in Anglo-Norman in the oath par la seint supplice! in the sense ‘sacrifice’, with specific reference to Christ).