A deadman’s chair is a device associated with the watchtowers of the Guarded Land—each tower generally having four chairs: one facing up the road and the leftway, another down; two more looking out across the land—one in each direction.
A deadman’s chair keeps the lookout sitting on it awake by threatening his life should he fall asleep. The seat itself is a freely rotating drum astride which the lookout sits. To stop himself falling off, the lookout must keep a grip on a bracing hoop. This hoop is a fixed structure surrounding the ‘chair’.