During the eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries arsenic was readily available to the general public; indeed it was prescribed by doctors as a tonic to build up strength and put on weight as well as a treatment for rheumatism, dropsy and syphilis. It was also widely used to kill household vermin. So no chemist in Suffolk would have been suspicious when a small amount of grey-white powder was purchased. That is until a sudden death took place - but even then the symptoms could have been confused with the English Cholera.
Of all forms of murder, poisoning is one that is premeditated. Yet it is also the least certain way to ensure the death of the desired victim. As we learn from these cases from Suffolk's history, unintended people sometimes suffered at the hands of the poisoner. Neither has it always been possible to prove the guilt of the one who had administered the poison.
This chilling collection is sure to appeal to all those interested in the shady side of Suffolk's history.