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poisons-msg – 3/26/04

 

Medieval poisons.

 

NOTE: See also the files: poisons-art, p-medicine-msg, herbs-msg, spices-msg, p-herbals-msg, mandrake-art, rue-msg, Pest-Control-art.

 

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NOTICE -

 

This file is a collection of various messages having a common theme that I  have collected from my reading of the various computer networks. Some messages date back to 1989, some may be as recent as yesterday.

 

This file is part of a collection of files called Stefan's Florilegium. These files are available on the Internet at: http://www.florilegium.org

 

I  have done  a limited amount  of  editing. Messages having to do  with separate topics  were sometimes split into different files and sometimes extraneous information was removed. For instance, the  message IDs  were removed to save space and remove clutter.

 

The comments made in these messages are not necessarily my viewpoints. I make  no claims  as  to the accuracy  of  the information  given by the individual authors.

 

Please  respect the time  and  efforts of  those who have written  these messages. The  copyright status  of these messages  is  unclear at this time. If  information  is  published  from  these  messages, please give credit to the originator(s).

 

Thank you,

    Mark S. Harris                  AKA:  THLord Stefan li Rous

                                          Stefan at florilegium.org

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From: corliss at hal.PHysics.wayne.EDU (David J. Corliss)

Newsgroups: rec.org.sca

Subject: Poisons

Date: 12 Jul 1994 10:41:30 -0400

Organization: the internet

 

Mikjal Annarbjorn writes:

 

> I'd have thought that digitalis (nightshade) would be another "fast-acting"

> poison. Could it be produced in quantity in period?

 

Gentle Lord,

You have confused two _distinct_ poisons. Both were known in period.

 

The plant known as digitalis in Latin, on account of it's finger-shaped

flowers, was known as foke's glove (foke = a kind of sprite) in English. This

name has since become foxglove, the present English name for this ornamental

plant. It is found in many gardens and contains four alkaloids, all of which

are toxic. The plant is deadly. It is also grown for medicinal purposes, the

alkaloids being useful medicines in tiny, accurately measured, and prescribed

doses. This is the source of the alkaloid digitalis, so beneficial in cases of

heart disease. In the Middle Ages and Renaisance, it was given to treat edema

without knowledge of the connection between edema and heart disease.

 

Nightshade, properly speaking, is the name of a family of plants including

potatoes and tomatoes in addition to deadly nightshade, the namesake of the

group. This plant is also known as belladonna, or "beautiful lady": a tincture

of the leaves was put into the eyes so that the pupils would dilate and make

the eyes appear larger. This plant yields a dangerous narcotic and

hallucinogenic substance, also known as belladonna, responsible for the

dilation of the pupils. In all but the smallest quantities, it may be fatal.

 

Other well known toxic plants used in period included monkshood, henbane, and

mistletoe.

 

Beorthwine of Grafham Wood

 

 

From: ayotte at milo.NOdak.EDU (Robert Arthur Ayotte)

Newsgroups: rec.org.sca

Subject: Re: Poisons

Date: 12 Jul 1994 20:12:01 -0400

Organization: North Dakota State University ACM, Fargo ND

 

In article <9407121432.AA07172 at hal.physics.wayne.edu> you wrote:

 

: Nightshade, properly speaking, is the name of a family of plants including

: potatoes and tomatoes in addition to deadly nightshade, the namesake of the

: group. This plant is also known as belladonna, or "beautiful lady": a tincture

: of the leaves was put into the eyes so that the pupils would dilate and make

: the eyes appear larger. This plant yields a dangerous narcotic and

: hallucinogenic substance, also known as belladonna, responsible for the

: dilation of the pupils. In all but the smallest quantities, it may be fatal.

 

Actually that family is known as Solanaceae formally (see Linnaeus).  The

berry is part used to make both the poison and the dye. When unripe the

berry has a protective alkaloid poison (not narcotic or hallucinogenic) that

can be extracted but is known for it's tasteless ness but is

very slow working and can take repeated applications to be effective, and

it leaves a notable sign on the body.

      Like many plants the toxins change from different stages of growth.

The RIPE berries are harmeless, and actually quite good to eat.  The problem

comes when you get a few green berries mixed in with the ripe.  There was a

town that had been growing them and called deadly nightshade "wonderberry"

and was the favorite local berry for pies and preserves.

      Also the dye for eye came from the berry, it turns the white of the

eye purple and the residual alkaloids do tend to dialate the eye as well.

Since these dyes were from the ripe berry they were not poison, but could

cause irritation and swelling of the bloodvessels in the eye making it

look quite bloodshot.

 

: Other well known toxic plants used in period included monkshood, henbane, and

: mistletoe.

 

: Beorthwine of Grafham Wood

 

      Oh, and the Romans were quite advanced in herbalistic poisons.  I

think it was wolfsbane that was used to kill Germanicus by his son Caligula.

 

      Of note they also had many remidies for these poisons as well.

 

      Mistletoe is one of the most deadly listed here.

 

Horace of Northshield

 

 

 

From: RONDEAUB at ropt1.am.wyeth.COM (Ben Rondeau)

Newsgroups: rec.org.sca

Subject: Poisons....

Date: 14 Jul 1994 14:13:34 -0400

Organization: the internet

 

Good day to the folks of the Rialto:

 

I've been following the 'Poisons' thread here, and would like

to make a comment before anyone goes out and tries to grow

some of the plants mentioned (belladonna, henbane, foxglove,

etc.) RESEARCH YOUR LOCAL AND STATE LAWS FIRST!!! Also, some

plants contain alkaloids that are on the Schedule  of

controlled substances, and possession of ANY amount of these

plants can lead to prosecution.

 

Some states have laws against the cultivation of ANY

"dangerous" plants, so please.....check the regs first.

 

A lot of these plants are sold as ornamentals, ie, you can buy

foxglove at the local K-Mart here in Northern NY and castor

plants (from whence comes castor oil and ricinine, a powerful

poison) from the local Agway, so , in an area that permits

them, they can be grown. (Hopefully, only for their curiousity

value!!!)

 

Addition to the list of poisonous plants...how about

bittersweet nightshade? This little wonder grows wild here

along streambanks and is easy to find, and just about all of

the plant is toxic......

 

Ben Rondeau

rondeau at ropt1.am.wyeth.com

 

 

From: gbrent at rschp1.anu.EDU.AU (Geoffrey Brent)

Newsgroups: rec.org.sca

Subject: Period poisons

Date: 15 Jul 1994 01:43:36 -0400

Organization: the internet

 

One toxin that was certainly present in mediaeval times, and more deadly

than any mentioned so far (by dose) : botulin. Nasty, too.

 

It might be a bit hard to find which food contained it, though. Unless

you had a whole lot of servants nibble on things, and note who dropped

dead of it.

--

      Geoffrey the Quiet (gbrent at rsc.anu.edu.au)

 

 

From: gbrent at rschp1.anu.EDU.AU (Geoffrey Brent)

Newsgroups: rec.org.sca

Subject: Fast acting poisons ?

Date: 11 Jul 1994 01:30:20 -0400

Organization: the internet

 

I can think of one that might be available. The good old favourite,

cyanide. Present in apple pits, apricot kernels, etc. etc. in

significant quantities. (Ever noticed how apple pits taste a little like

almonds ?) I suspect it would be quite possible to extract enough HCN

from something of the sort to poison someone.

 

(The reason apple pits and apricot kernels contain the stuff: not a lot

of creatures make a habit of eating apricot kernels.)

--

      Geoffrey the Quiet (gbrent at rsc.anu.edu.au)

 

 

From: doconnor at sedona.intel.com (Dennis O'Connor)

Newsgroups: rec.org.sca

Subject: Re: Fast acting poisons ?

Date: 14 Jul 94 07:54:38

Organization: not much.

 

gbrent at rschp1.anu.EDU.AU (Geoffrey Brent) writes:

] I can think of one that might be available. The good old favourite,

] cyanide. Present in apple pits, apricot kernels, etc. etc. in

] significant quantities. (Ever noticed how apple pits taste a little like

] almonds ?) I suspect it would be quite possible to extract enough HCN

] from something of the sort to poison someone.

 

When my wife was young, her mother would make wild cherry (I think) wine.

According to my wife, a layer of cyanide-rich liquid would accumulate

on top of the wine, which her mother would simply skim off.

--

Dennis O'Connor                          doconnor at sedona.intel.com

Intel i960(R) Microprocessor Division    Solely responsible for what I do.

 

 

From: darkstar at u.washington.edu (Alden  Hackmann)

Newsgroups: rec.org.sca

Subject: Re: Digitalis

Date: 12 Jul 1994 19:07:13 GMT

Organization: University of Washington

 

WISH at uriacc.uri.EDU writes:

 

>> Michael Chance <mchance at nyx10.cs.du.edu>

>> ...

>> I'd have thought that digitalis (nightshade) would be another

>> "fast-acting" poison.  Could it be produced in quantity in period?

 

>Purely from memory; Purple foxglove produces enough digitalis

>                    to kill livestock, so I'd be surprised if people

>                    could survive it...  (Isn't digitalis in small

>                    doses used to treat dropsy? )

 

Yes, but nightshade and foxglove are different plants. Foxglove

(Digitalus purpura) produces digitalis, which is used therapeutically but

is quite toxic: the margin between a useful dose and one that kills may

be as low as a factor of 2.  The modern drug, digoxin, is chemically

modified so the therapeutic index is a little wider, but it's still quite

dangerous.  You should wash your hands after handling foxglove.

 

Deadly nightshade produces a different toxin, an anti-cholinergic which

acts on the nervous system.  

 

Caveat: It's been a long time since I learned all this stuff, and I don't

have my Goodman and Gilman nearby to check.  

 

Alden

 

 

From: jeffs at math.bu.EDU (Jeff Suzuki)

Newsgroups: rec.org.sca

Subject: botulin

Date: 28 Jul 1994 20:14:02 -0400

Organization: the internet

 

>One toxin that was certainly present in mediaeval times, and more deadly

>than any mentioned so far (by dose) : botulin. Nasty, too.

 

Hmmm...hard to figure where you'd get it.  Doesn't C. Botulinus

require a vacuum to produce its organic poison?  (Granted, there are

some unusual circumstances I've heard of...including one that involved

a layer of fat forming a hermetic seal over a vat of soup...SCA cooks

beware...)

 

OK, I missed the original post, but off the top of my head the

available medieval poisons I can think of are:  mercury, lead and any

number of other heavy metals (slow acting ones with symptoms well

known in period); various cyanides from things like peach pits etc.

("Prussian Blue" is good ol' HCN, though I don't know whether that

particular type of dye is period); lots of nasty organometallic

compounds like lead acetate ("sugar of lead" with all the really

interesting whodunit possibilities it implies for period

mysteries...); and ergot.

 

Ergot may be the most interesting case...if rye infected with ergot is

baked into a loaf, the LSD will survive the cooking process...then you

feed it to the victim.  Then you call the authorities and report a

witch...

 

William the Alchymist

(Now, where did I put that blowfish that I got sent...)

 

 

From: Joyce Miller <jmiller at genome.wi.mit.edu>

Newsgroups: rec.org.sca

Subject: Re: botulin

Date: 29 Jul 1994 18:48:52 GMT

Organization: Whitehead Institute for Biomedical Research

 

In article <9407290011.AA00193 at math.bu.edu> Jeff Suzuki,

jeffs at math.bu.EDU writes:

>Ergot may be the most interesting case...if rye infected with

ergot is

>baked into a loaf, the LSD will survive the cooking

process...then you

>feed it to the victim.  Then you call the authorities and report a

>witch...

>

>William the Alchymist

 

Or you report a dead person.  Ergot contains the alkoloids

ergonovine and ergotomine, both of which are composed of lysergic

acid, the precursor of LSD (Lysergic acid diethylamide, which has

to be synthisized in the laboratory).  Both alkoloids have very

powerful effects -- burning sensations in the extremities,

contriction of blood vessels (leading to gangrene in severe

cases), hallucinations, spontaneous abortions, and culvulsions

leading to death.  "Saint Anthony's Fire" or "Holy Fire" was a

common disease in the Middle Ages, particularly in France, where

tens of thousands were killed by it.  Many victims visited the

shrine of St. Anthony in Egypt, and were cured -- not surprising,

since they probably ate non-contaminated grain along the way.

 

Although in 1597 people began to associate the grain fungus and

the disease, outbreaks of ergotism continued well into this

century; in 1926 in the Ukraine, in the first few decades of this

century in New York, Ohio and Kansas, and most recently, in a

French village in 1951.  A fictionalized account of that outbreak

was given in the book "The Day of St. Anthony;s Fire_, by John G.

Fuller (1968).

 

-- Ursula/Joyce

=======================================================

Joyce Miller                  jmiller at genome.wi.mit.edu

Whitehead Institute / M.I.T. Center for Genome Research

617-252-1914 (phone)                 617-252-1902 (FAX)

=======================================================

 

 

From: gbrent at rschp1.anu.EDU.AU (Geoffrey Brent)

Newsgroups: rec.org.sca

Subject: Sausage poisoning

Date: 29 Jul 1994 02:14:10 -0400

Organization: the internet

 

Botulism doesn't require a vacuum; vacuums are rather hard to find in

the natural environment. What it does require is an environment without

free oxygen. (Oxygen is actually quite nasty to many critters; for those

that haven't evolved to cope with it, it's about as nasty as a lungful

of chlorine gas.) As someone mentioned earlier, sausage interiors are

one of these places - the name "botulism" derives from the Latin for

"sausage".

 

As for poisoning with straight mercury, I really wouldn't bother. It's

not very toxic (to eat; don't breathe the vapour) until it's in some

sort of compound. If you swallow pure mercury, most of it goes straight

through you (don't try this at home, darlings.)

 

Besides, the wretched stuff keeps rolling out of the food...

 

If I were a poisoner in period (alas, I was born four hundred years too

late, with the right outlook on life but the wrong morals) these are

some of the things I'd try :

 

Cyanide from peach pits etc. I'd want to be using a nice big dose.

Cyanide's fast enough that people will connect the poisoning with the

food pretty quickly, and if they aren't dead after all that things get

messy.

 

A whole heap of foxglove mixed into their food; I think heating would

denature it (not sure) so I'd have to just mix it in something without

cooking.

 

Arsenic (I think this was in period) over a period of time.

 

Rent-A-Snake. Actually, Rent-Lots-Of-Snakes. One snake bite is by no

means guaranteed fatal, even from something really deadly (and all the

deadliest snakes are _ours_, and out of the SCA's area.) Perhaps,

collect the venom and evaporate some of the moisture content (without

heating), then accidentally scratch them with it. Rather dodgy,

difficult to do without being caught. Besides, many snake venoms leave a

very obvious mark where they were introduced and take too long to work -

the victim would talk.

 

"Uncle Charles, have a mushroom !" Not called Destroying Angel because

they have halos and wings.

 

Or, if I was feeling particularly nasty :

      Find ye a rabid dog. Get your servants to capture it. (lucky

      them.) If it's dead, carefully collect saliva, blood or

      whatever. Better yet, get your servants to do it. Then spread it

      on a chunk of meat and feed it to your enemy's dog. Better

      still, chop the whole rabid dog up and feed it to his dog.

      Or invite him to dinner, and put a little bit of raw meat in his

      food, and hope. (Steak tartare ? :-) Or scratch him with

      something dipped in the stuff (Oops, must be more careful with

      that knife. I might have killed you.)

 

      If the dog's still alive, you'll probably want to kill it

      anyway.

 

In period, infection would have invariably lead to a rather horrible

death. (There is only one recorded case of a human surviving rabies

infection once it took hold, and that was with full medical aid. Rabies

kills 30 000 people a year now, in 1994.)

 

Of course, it all depends on what you want to achieve. For sudden death,

cyanide's the only period poison I can think of, and a hired goon with a

crossbow is a lot better. Besides, why bother ? You don't want to make

it too easy to work out when poisoning occurred. Far better to use

something slow-acting, which could be mistaken for natural causes.

 

Sadly, a lot of the best animal poisons are Australian. That's your

tough luck.

 

I doubt I would have used botulism, not so much because it would be too

difficult but because I wouldn't have known how to cultivate it, knowing

nothing about how diseases worked (on the other hand, I think most

people in an area with rabies would know how to catch it.)

 

These suggestions are only for informational purposes. Do NOT play with

any of these poisons.

--

      Geoffrey the Quiet (gbrent at rsc.anu.edu.au)

 

 

From: gbrent at rschp1.anu.EDU.AU (Geoffrey Brent)

Newsgroups: rec.org.sca

Subject: Period poisons - oleander

Date: 1 Aug 1994 01:02:42 -0400

Organization: the internet

 

Oleander is certainly poisonous, as is the smoke. The problem is, from

what I know of it I suspect it would be a little inconvenient and

unreliable.

 

You see, when you're choosing your poisons, there are several things you

want out of them.

 

i) Untraceability. If someone dies in the middle of a meal from blowfish

poisoning, and you own the only blowfish in town, people are going to be

suspicious.

 

ii) Reliability. If you can't be guaranteed that someone will die from

your attempt, you could be in trouble. If they realise someone's trying

to kill them they will take more precautions and look for suspects.

Poisoning's a very suspicious way to die in any case, and if you leave

someone not-quite-dead there will be even more of an attempt to find out

who did it.

 

iii) Convenience/ease of introduction. The ideal poison resembles food

or has such a small lethal dose that you can hide it in their

meal anyway. It doesn't taste too strong, and it isn't destroyed by

cooking or whatever you do to the food after poisoning it.

 

iv) Syptoms should resemble some "natural" cause of death; they should

also happen long enough after eating that people don't trace the exact

meal. (This is where systematic poisoning with arsenic or heavy metals

comes into its own.)

 

Oleander would fall down on ii and iii, I think. While it is certainly a

danger to animals and children, the dose is still far from minute

(especially to an adult.) I am not a big enough idiot to have tried it,

but I suspect the taste would be quite strong. (It's better for the

plant to deter you than to kill you at the cost of all its leaves.)

Being a reasonably complex poison (sorry, don't know the details, but

most vegetable poisons are) it would probably be decomposed by cooking.

 

Another problem with organic poisons, especially the more complicated

ones, is that tolerances vary enough to give you the occasional nasty

surprise. "That leaf salad was heavenly ! What _do_ you put in it ?"

 

From the above list, I'd be most in favour of something like destroying

angel mushrooms. If you mix bits of them in with normal mushrooms,

you can't really tell that there's something wrong. (If you use a

brightly coloured fungus, like the one with the pretty red spots, just

use the insides and destroy the outside. The insides of mushrooms look

much the same no matter what they're from.)

 

The poison is so toxic that reliability is no problem (tolerance or no,

you're in a lot of trouble.) It would probably be seen as poisoning,

because the effects are more acute than most diseases, but it could have

just been an accident - you know how difficult it is to tell with

mushrooms...

 

And it's not hard to introduce - just offer some chopped mushrooms. You

don't have to cook them.

 

If you want a really long delay in period, you really have to accept

some unreliability. In such a case, I'd be thinking more of biological

agents than chemical - as I mentioned, rabies takes a fair while before

it takes effect. It's also quite nasty, if you're feeling vengeful.

 

(Geoffrey the Quiet is just a wanderer with no real reason to poison

people, although the subject does interest him somewhat. Geoffrey Brent

knows more about poisons than an honest lad should, and requests that

you don't try any of these, even in fun. Lethal doses deliberately

omitted.)

--

      Geoffrey the Quiet (gbrent at rsc.anu.edu.au)

 

 

From: jjordan at yorick.umd.edu (James L. Jordan)

Newsgroups: rec.org.sca

Subject: Re: Period poisons - oleander

Date: 4 Aug 1994 13:05:48 GMT

Organization: University of Maryland, College Park

 

I agree, the death angel mushroom would be an ideal way to off someone.  

the toxin actually destroys the victim's liver.  The demise is within a

few days, with all sorts of symptoms that could be msitaken for a natural

cause.

 

 

From: irgenwer at ix.netcom.com (Kate was here)

Newsgroups: rec.org.sca

Subject: Re: White Lead

Date: Tue, 04 Feb 1997 22:17:48 GMT

Organization: Quahaug Cannery

 

david.razler at worldnet.att.net (David M. Razler) posted:

>3) One lead compound misidentified in a post is lead acetate, Pb(C2H2O2)2 or

>"sugar of lead" which tastes great, is less filling and kills you. It was used

>in some times/places in the Roman Empire and into period as a wine sweetener.

 

Wow!  I didn't know that.  That's cool!  (Though my favorite poison used in

food is still orpiment, As2S3 - used in medieval and renaissance Italy as a

preservative for shipping wine long distances.  A little arsenic with your

burgundy, mi'lord?)

 

 

Date: Tue, 28 Jul 1998 11:13:14 +1000

From: The Cheshire Cat <sianan at geocities.com>

Subject: SC - Deadly Datura

 

>I believe that Datura was used as an ordeal poison by native americans.

 

In ancient Egypt too, Datura was used as a poison.  Very popular with

assassins and such like.  (I'm begginning to realise an alarming trend with

my knowledge,  I know more anout wierd potions and poisons than I do

cooking.)

- -Sianan

 

 

Date: Sun, 21 Mar 1999 18:07:31 -0500

From: rmhowe <magnusm at ncsu.edu>

To: sca-arts at raven.cc.ukans.edu

Subject: Herbs, and Poisons, etc. Oh My!

 

http://www.erols.com/cosby/diana.html  A Writer's page.

 

Check Out Where these links lead you.

 

Magnus

 

 

From: "Terry Decker" <t.d.decker at worldnet.att.net>

To: <sca-cooks at ansteorra.org>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] ivory reworked

Date: Mon, 26 Nov 2001 21:18:05 -0600

 

>Ok. And what are "bezoar stones"?

>Stefan

 

A bezoar stone is a hard mass of indigestible material such as hair or

fibers found in the stomachs or intestines of animals.  Apparently they are

fairly common in ruminants and humans.  Bezoar stones are believed to have

magic properties and act as a antidote to poison.

 

Bezoar appears to derive from the Middle English "bezear" from the Old

French "bezahar" possibly from the Arabic "bazahr" which derives from the

Persian "padzahr" meaning "poison antidote."

 

Bear

 

 

Date: Wed, 9 Jul 2003 22:21:39 -0500

From: "Terry Decker" <t.d.decker at worldnet.att.net>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Re Request for info on period poisons

To: "Cooks within the SCA" <sca-cooks at ansteorra.org>

 

Seems to me Amanita phalloides (death angel, death cap, death cup mushroom)

was used in at least one period murder.  And arsenic was described as an

element by Albertus Magnus in the 13th Century.  Socrates was executed with

an infusion of poison hemlock (Conium maculatum), so that was certainly

known in Shakespeare's time.  Snake venom, with or without the snake, is

another possibility, but other than Cleopatra's (apochryphal?) suicide, I

can't think of an occurence

 

Bear

 

 

Date: Thu, 10 Jul 2003 06:17:01 -0500

From: "Terry Decker" <t.d.decker at worldnet.att.net>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Re Request for info on period poisons

To: "Cooks within the SCA" <sca-cooks at ansteorra.org>

 

Thought of another one after I staggered off to bed.  Belladonna or deadly

nightshade (Atropa belladonna).

 

Bear

 

 

Date: Thu, 10 Jul 2003 10:01:24 -0400

From: "a5foil" <a5foil at ix.netcom.com>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Re Request for info on period poisons

To: "Cooks within the SCA" <sca-cooks at ansteorra.org>

 

How about aconite -- monkshood?

 

Though looking at Grieve's Herbal, she says it was considered an antidote

against other poisons -- as well as being known as venomous and deadly.

 

Cynara

 

 

Date: Thu, 10 Jul 2003 09:50:09 -0500

From: "Aurore" <Aurore at hot.rr.com>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Re Request for info on period poisons

To: "Cooks within the SCA" <sca-cooks at ansteorra.org>

 

Don't forget Foxglove. It has it's good uses but used in a bad way, it does

the deed.  Aurore

 

 

Date: Thu, 10 Jul 2003 10:30:21 -0500

From: "Decker, Terry D." <TerryD at Health.State.OK.US>

Subject: [Sca-cooks] Re Request for info on period poisons

To: "'sca-cooks at ansteorra.org'" <sca-cooks at ansteorra.org>

 

Other poisons I have thought of, opium (from Papaver somniferum, opium

poppy), aconite (from Aconitum napellus, monkshood or wolfsbane), digitalis

(from Digitalis purpurea, foxglove), hyoscyamine (from Hyoscyamus niger,

hensbane), and hellebore (most of the genus Helleborus).  

 

For a period source on poisons which is contemporary to Shakespeare, Try

Giambattista della Porta's "Magia Naturalis" (1558).  He also appears as

Giovanni Battista Porta or della Porta.  Transcripts of the 1558 Latin text

and the 1658 English translation are webbed at:

http://members.tscnet.com/pages/omard1/jportat3.html

 

This text also contains a section on cookery, so it is of interest to this

list beyond it's poisons.

 

Bear

 

 

Date: Thu, 10 Jul 2003 12:34:25 -0400

From: "Sayyida Halima al-Shafi'i of Raven's Cove" <lkuney at ec.rr.com>

Subject: [Sca-cooks] period poisons...

To: sca-cooks at ansteorra.org

 

Let us not forget hemlock...<g>

 

Halima al-Shafi'i

Stronghold of Raven's Cove

Kingdom of Atlantia

 

 

Date: Fri, 11 Jul 2003 18:33:03 -0400

From: Morgana Abbey <morgana.abbey at juno.com>

Subject: [Sca-cooks] Re: period poisons...

To: Sca-cooks at ansteorra.org

 

A friend of mine taught a class some years ago about poisons.  I do not

have his sources to cite, but here is the wildest poisoning method he

found.

 

From the North of Scotland:  Catch a sea snake (yeah, one of those nasty

chase-you-up-on-shore critters).  Milk it for venom.  Mix the venom with

oil--carefully as the venom is a neurotoxin and therefore --- Put the

mixture inside your enemy's gloves.  Venom seeps through skin.  Enemy

dies.  You party.

 

Morgana

 

 

Date: Fri, 11 Jul 2003 19:44:53 -0500

From: "Terry Decker" <t.d.decker at worldnet.att.net>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] period poisons...

To: "Cooks within the SCA" <sca-cooks at ansteorra.org>

 

>>>

Here is a web site of deaths by unnatural causes in illuminations, it

contains a section on poisoning. Unfortunately they don't list the poison being used.

http://www.kb.nl/kb/manuscripts/highlights/31E23_uk.html

 

Cecily

<<<

 

Since the title is Socrates drinks from the poisoned cup, the poison is an infusion of poison hemlock (Conium maculatum).  The execution of Socrates is recorded by Plato, one of Socrates's students.

 

Bear

 

 

Date: Mon, 14 Jul 2003 08:53:30 -0600

From: "Eden Blacksmith" <edenblacksmith at hotmail.com>

Subject: [Sca-cooks] period poisons

To: sca-cooks at ansteorra.org

 

from my files on posion.....hope it has something you need.

Eden

Atenveldt

 

http://members.tripod.com/~Prof_Anil_Aggrawal/poiso001.html

http://www.lehigh.edu/~jahb/herbs/WomenMed.html

http://www.portfolio.mvm.ed.ac.uk/studentwebs/session2/group12/middle.htm

http://webexhibits.org/pigments/indiv/color/greens3.html

http://www.florilegium.org/files/UNCAT/poisons-art.html

http://www.castellum.freewebspace.com/pestcont.html

http://www.portfolio.mvm.ed.ac.uk/studentwebs/session2/group12/renaissance.htm

http://www.skell.org/SKELL/plants4.htm

http://britishexpats.com/arch/44/2001/4/22353 (questionable resource ...but, cute)

http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/source/glaber-1000.html

http://www.erowid.org/library/books/poisons_of.shtml

http://www.botanical.com/botanical/mgmh/mgmh.html

 

<the end>



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