Kill Your Regency Hero with Wallpaper

  Patbookmark

I’m still working on the proposal for the next book so I’m really not yet ready to murder my hero. He’s still charming and blithe and hiding his problems instead of giving me or my heroine grief. But while I was researching, I came across this charming tidbit about Regency wallpaper—the greens are poisonous.

The most relevant article is here: Janeaustensworld.com
Essentially, around 1812 a vivid new emerald green paint was developed using a chemical composition containing arsenic. Arsenic was used for many things at the time, including a treatment for syphilis. Unfortunately, the treatment could lead to Parisgreen headaches, confusion and drowsiness. If continued the usual arsenic poisoning symptoms would ensue, such as convulsions, diarrhea, vomiting, blood in the urine, cramping muscles, hair loss, stomach pain, and eventually coma and death.

Arsenic treatments were seldom continued long enough to kill, but arsenic in the wallpaper, combined with the damp climate of England, created a kind of mold that people inhaled daily, for years. They did notice that people who grew sickly in winter when it was dampest seemed to revive when moved to a sunny, dry climate. But no one thought to examine the wallpaper—even after the arsenic theory was developed—until the Victorian era. Even then, it was widely disregarded and the chemicals used to develop the pigment were continued in use to kill barnacles on ships and as insecticide. Now, c’mon—paint your walls and kill insects?  Ouch. (a more scientific explanation)   Regencywallpaperw

Paris green was a similar oil pigment formulation used by Impressionists as late as the early 20th century. Cézanne developed severe diabetes, which is a symptom of chronic arsenic poisoning.  Monet’s blindness and Van Gogh's neurological disorders could also be related to their use of Paris Green, as well as lead pigments, Cezanne mercury-based vermillion, and solvents such as turpentine. (In other words, he painted himself crazy.)

So maybe instead of murdering my hero with wallpaper, I could just develop a sickly sister or mother, then cure her with sunshine! Or maybe I need to research diabetes in the Regency era… Of course, they also used that green in fabrics—kill someone with a favorite shawl?  Regencyshawls

And here we thought we were the ones who developed pollution! Who knew environmental hazards could kill our ancestors? How can we possibly solve environmental contamination when even the natural elements conspire against us? Anyone else know some great ways to murder people naturally? (Oh, and there’s always lead-based paint…)

Isn’t it fun to be a writer?

140 thoughts on “Kill Your Regency Hero with Wallpaper”

  1. You could probably kill someone with inferior tea. Servants used to sell used tea leaves at the back door. Said tea leaves were then dried out and re-dyed and sometimes even adulterated with hawthorn or ash leaves boiled in sheep dung by cheapskate merchants. Thankfully my characters are fully aware of Mr Twining’s little shop down on the Strand where one hopes such revolting practices were not … practised!

    Reply
  2. You could probably kill someone with inferior tea. Servants used to sell used tea leaves at the back door. Said tea leaves were then dried out and re-dyed and sometimes even adulterated with hawthorn or ash leaves boiled in sheep dung by cheapskate merchants. Thankfully my characters are fully aware of Mr Twining’s little shop down on the Strand where one hopes such revolting practices were not … practised!

    Reply
  3. You could probably kill someone with inferior tea. Servants used to sell used tea leaves at the back door. Said tea leaves were then dried out and re-dyed and sometimes even adulterated with hawthorn or ash leaves boiled in sheep dung by cheapskate merchants. Thankfully my characters are fully aware of Mr Twining’s little shop down on the Strand where one hopes such revolting practices were not … practised!

    Reply
  4. You could probably kill someone with inferior tea. Servants used to sell used tea leaves at the back door. Said tea leaves were then dried out and re-dyed and sometimes even adulterated with hawthorn or ash leaves boiled in sheep dung by cheapskate merchants. Thankfully my characters are fully aware of Mr Twining’s little shop down on the Strand where one hopes such revolting practices were not … practised!

    Reply
  5. You could probably kill someone with inferior tea. Servants used to sell used tea leaves at the back door. Said tea leaves were then dried out and re-dyed and sometimes even adulterated with hawthorn or ash leaves boiled in sheep dung by cheapskate merchants. Thankfully my characters are fully aware of Mr Twining’s little shop down on the Strand where one hopes such revolting practices were not … practised!

    Reply
  6. LOL, Elizabeth, an excellent means of killing heroes when we’re feeling murderous. Dead by tea leaf. Love it! And Liz, you have a way with dialogue, but you already knew that, didn’t you? “G” But I think it might make his lady bilious.

    Reply
  7. LOL, Elizabeth, an excellent means of killing heroes when we’re feeling murderous. Dead by tea leaf. Love it! And Liz, you have a way with dialogue, but you already knew that, didn’t you? “G” But I think it might make his lady bilious.

    Reply
  8. LOL, Elizabeth, an excellent means of killing heroes when we’re feeling murderous. Dead by tea leaf. Love it! And Liz, you have a way with dialogue, but you already knew that, didn’t you? “G” But I think it might make his lady bilious.

    Reply
  9. LOL, Elizabeth, an excellent means of killing heroes when we’re feeling murderous. Dead by tea leaf. Love it! And Liz, you have a way with dialogue, but you already knew that, didn’t you? “G” But I think it might make his lady bilious.

    Reply
  10. LOL, Elizabeth, an excellent means of killing heroes when we’re feeling murderous. Dead by tea leaf. Love it! And Liz, you have a way with dialogue, but you already knew that, didn’t you? “G” But I think it might make his lady bilious.

    Reply
  11. Very interesting post, Patricia.
    Of course, the most famous victim of death by green wallpaper was Napoleon. Apparently, his body showed all the symptoms of arsenic poisonng – brittle hair and so on. So you are in distinguished company!

    Reply
  12. Very interesting post, Patricia.
    Of course, the most famous victim of death by green wallpaper was Napoleon. Apparently, his body showed all the symptoms of arsenic poisonng – brittle hair and so on. So you are in distinguished company!

    Reply
  13. Very interesting post, Patricia.
    Of course, the most famous victim of death by green wallpaper was Napoleon. Apparently, his body showed all the symptoms of arsenic poisonng – brittle hair and so on. So you are in distinguished company!

    Reply
  14. Very interesting post, Patricia.
    Of course, the most famous victim of death by green wallpaper was Napoleon. Apparently, his body showed all the symptoms of arsenic poisonng – brittle hair and so on. So you are in distinguished company!

    Reply
  15. Very interesting post, Patricia.
    Of course, the most famous victim of death by green wallpaper was Napoleon. Apparently, his body showed all the symptoms of arsenic poisonng – brittle hair and so on. So you are in distinguished company!

    Reply
  16. LOL, Elizabeth! Although I believe the body becomes inured to arsenic so it would take a massive dose to actually kill in the short term. He also showed symptoms shortly after arriving on the island I believe (I assume all islands are moist enough to cause mold conditions needed to activate the wallpaper?), and the conspiracy theories are numerous. Wallpaper works for me!

    Reply
  17. LOL, Elizabeth! Although I believe the body becomes inured to arsenic so it would take a massive dose to actually kill in the short term. He also showed symptoms shortly after arriving on the island I believe (I assume all islands are moist enough to cause mold conditions needed to activate the wallpaper?), and the conspiracy theories are numerous. Wallpaper works for me!

    Reply
  18. LOL, Elizabeth! Although I believe the body becomes inured to arsenic so it would take a massive dose to actually kill in the short term. He also showed symptoms shortly after arriving on the island I believe (I assume all islands are moist enough to cause mold conditions needed to activate the wallpaper?), and the conspiracy theories are numerous. Wallpaper works for me!

    Reply
  19. LOL, Elizabeth! Although I believe the body becomes inured to arsenic so it would take a massive dose to actually kill in the short term. He also showed symptoms shortly after arriving on the island I believe (I assume all islands are moist enough to cause mold conditions needed to activate the wallpaper?), and the conspiracy theories are numerous. Wallpaper works for me!

    Reply
  20. LOL, Elizabeth! Although I believe the body becomes inured to arsenic so it would take a massive dose to actually kill in the short term. He also showed symptoms shortly after arriving on the island I believe (I assume all islands are moist enough to cause mold conditions needed to activate the wallpaper?), and the conspiracy theories are numerous. Wallpaper works for me!

    Reply
  21. Oleanders are one of the most poisonous plants in the world. Even the smoke will kill you! They are quite common in the South (everywhere at Disney World), to the point that I have heard women joke about putting oleander in a meatloaf to kill a bothersome husband.
    They are, I believe, originaly Mediterranean plants, but perhaps they could have been grown in an English hothouse?

    Reply
  22. Oleanders are one of the most poisonous plants in the world. Even the smoke will kill you! They are quite common in the South (everywhere at Disney World), to the point that I have heard women joke about putting oleander in a meatloaf to kill a bothersome husband.
    They are, I believe, originaly Mediterranean plants, but perhaps they could have been grown in an English hothouse?

    Reply
  23. Oleanders are one of the most poisonous plants in the world. Even the smoke will kill you! They are quite common in the South (everywhere at Disney World), to the point that I have heard women joke about putting oleander in a meatloaf to kill a bothersome husband.
    They are, I believe, originaly Mediterranean plants, but perhaps they could have been grown in an English hothouse?

    Reply
  24. Oleanders are one of the most poisonous plants in the world. Even the smoke will kill you! They are quite common in the South (everywhere at Disney World), to the point that I have heard women joke about putting oleander in a meatloaf to kill a bothersome husband.
    They are, I believe, originaly Mediterranean plants, but perhaps they could have been grown in an English hothouse?

    Reply
  25. Oleanders are one of the most poisonous plants in the world. Even the smoke will kill you! They are quite common in the South (everywhere at Disney World), to the point that I have heard women joke about putting oleander in a meatloaf to kill a bothersome husband.
    They are, I believe, originaly Mediterranean plants, but perhaps they could have been grown in an English hothouse?

    Reply
  26. Sounds like the Wench readers are in murderous mood today. *G* It’s good to remember that natural doesn’t always mean healthy! In the old days when they talked about ‘the grain is bad this year,’ what they meant was that it had the mold that poisoned and did permanent neurogical damage. But the peasants had to eat something, so they took their chances.

    Reply
  27. Sounds like the Wench readers are in murderous mood today. *G* It’s good to remember that natural doesn’t always mean healthy! In the old days when they talked about ‘the grain is bad this year,’ what they meant was that it had the mold that poisoned and did permanent neurogical damage. But the peasants had to eat something, so they took their chances.

    Reply
  28. Sounds like the Wench readers are in murderous mood today. *G* It’s good to remember that natural doesn’t always mean healthy! In the old days when they talked about ‘the grain is bad this year,’ what they meant was that it had the mold that poisoned and did permanent neurogical damage. But the peasants had to eat something, so they took their chances.

    Reply
  29. Sounds like the Wench readers are in murderous mood today. *G* It’s good to remember that natural doesn’t always mean healthy! In the old days when they talked about ‘the grain is bad this year,’ what they meant was that it had the mold that poisoned and did permanent neurogical damage. But the peasants had to eat something, so they took their chances.

    Reply
  30. Sounds like the Wench readers are in murderous mood today. *G* It’s good to remember that natural doesn’t always mean healthy! In the old days when they talked about ‘the grain is bad this year,’ what they meant was that it had the mold that poisoned and did permanent neurogical damage. But the peasants had to eat something, so they took their chances.

    Reply
  31. Oooo, we could just make our hero crazy! Now I’m trying to imagine hallucinations at a tea party and my hero could be in real trouble if I get mad at him.
    Foxglove is a good kill-all, too, and they definitely had that in England. Hard to accidentally ingest foxglove and oleander, I fear, but they’d be much faster than wallpaper. I guess I’d better get in the Christmas spirit soon before I’m writing ghosts.

    Reply
  32. Oooo, we could just make our hero crazy! Now I’m trying to imagine hallucinations at a tea party and my hero could be in real trouble if I get mad at him.
    Foxglove is a good kill-all, too, and they definitely had that in England. Hard to accidentally ingest foxglove and oleander, I fear, but they’d be much faster than wallpaper. I guess I’d better get in the Christmas spirit soon before I’m writing ghosts.

    Reply
  33. Oooo, we could just make our hero crazy! Now I’m trying to imagine hallucinations at a tea party and my hero could be in real trouble if I get mad at him.
    Foxglove is a good kill-all, too, and they definitely had that in England. Hard to accidentally ingest foxglove and oleander, I fear, but they’d be much faster than wallpaper. I guess I’d better get in the Christmas spirit soon before I’m writing ghosts.

    Reply
  34. Oooo, we could just make our hero crazy! Now I’m trying to imagine hallucinations at a tea party and my hero could be in real trouble if I get mad at him.
    Foxglove is a good kill-all, too, and they definitely had that in England. Hard to accidentally ingest foxglove and oleander, I fear, but they’d be much faster than wallpaper. I guess I’d better get in the Christmas spirit soon before I’m writing ghosts.

    Reply
  35. Oooo, we could just make our hero crazy! Now I’m trying to imagine hallucinations at a tea party and my hero could be in real trouble if I get mad at him.
    Foxglove is a good kill-all, too, and they definitely had that in England. Hard to accidentally ingest foxglove and oleander, I fear, but they’d be much faster than wallpaper. I guess I’d better get in the Christmas spirit soon before I’m writing ghosts.

    Reply
  36. The rich diet would certainly hasten the decline of anyone developing diabetes in the Regency era.
    Slighly less unpleasant than arsenic poisoning.

    Reply
  37. The rich diet would certainly hasten the decline of anyone developing diabetes in the Regency era.
    Slighly less unpleasant than arsenic poisoning.

    Reply
  38. The rich diet would certainly hasten the decline of anyone developing diabetes in the Regency era.
    Slighly less unpleasant than arsenic poisoning.

    Reply
  39. The rich diet would certainly hasten the decline of anyone developing diabetes in the Regency era.
    Slighly less unpleasant than arsenic poisoning.

    Reply
  40. The rich diet would certainly hasten the decline of anyone developing diabetes in the Regency era.
    Slighly less unpleasant than arsenic poisoning.

    Reply
  41. “We really should change the wallpaper in this room. That green color is deadly dull.”
    Of course with the rage for all things Oriental in the late 19th century, a Japanese chef and a lovely dish of puffer fish would do the trick.
    Elderberry wine and jams were very popular, but if the fruit is not sufficiently cooked it contains cyanide. Your hero could literally drink himself to death.

    Reply
  42. “We really should change the wallpaper in this room. That green color is deadly dull.”
    Of course with the rage for all things Oriental in the late 19th century, a Japanese chef and a lovely dish of puffer fish would do the trick.
    Elderberry wine and jams were very popular, but if the fruit is not sufficiently cooked it contains cyanide. Your hero could literally drink himself to death.

    Reply
  43. “We really should change the wallpaper in this room. That green color is deadly dull.”
    Of course with the rage for all things Oriental in the late 19th century, a Japanese chef and a lovely dish of puffer fish would do the trick.
    Elderberry wine and jams were very popular, but if the fruit is not sufficiently cooked it contains cyanide. Your hero could literally drink himself to death.

    Reply
  44. “We really should change the wallpaper in this room. That green color is deadly dull.”
    Of course with the rage for all things Oriental in the late 19th century, a Japanese chef and a lovely dish of puffer fish would do the trick.
    Elderberry wine and jams were very popular, but if the fruit is not sufficiently cooked it contains cyanide. Your hero could literally drink himself to death.

    Reply
  45. “We really should change the wallpaper in this room. That green color is deadly dull.”
    Of course with the rage for all things Oriental in the late 19th century, a Japanese chef and a lovely dish of puffer fish would do the trick.
    Elderberry wine and jams were very popular, but if the fruit is not sufficiently cooked it contains cyanide. Your hero could literally drink himself to death.

    Reply
  46. Fascinating, Pat. I didn’t know diabetes was a symptom of arsenic poisoning. Slow arsenic poisoning, I assume.
    I suspect a lot of husbands and perhaps overbearing fathers and brothers were knocked off with a little something from the plant world. I remember reading about a part of the country where it was supposedly common, with the knowledge passed around the women.
    Now that’d balance the excessive powers given to men by the law back then!
    Jo

    Reply
  47. Fascinating, Pat. I didn’t know diabetes was a symptom of arsenic poisoning. Slow arsenic poisoning, I assume.
    I suspect a lot of husbands and perhaps overbearing fathers and brothers were knocked off with a little something from the plant world. I remember reading about a part of the country where it was supposedly common, with the knowledge passed around the women.
    Now that’d balance the excessive powers given to men by the law back then!
    Jo

    Reply
  48. Fascinating, Pat. I didn’t know diabetes was a symptom of arsenic poisoning. Slow arsenic poisoning, I assume.
    I suspect a lot of husbands and perhaps overbearing fathers and brothers were knocked off with a little something from the plant world. I remember reading about a part of the country where it was supposedly common, with the knowledge passed around the women.
    Now that’d balance the excessive powers given to men by the law back then!
    Jo

    Reply
  49. Fascinating, Pat. I didn’t know diabetes was a symptom of arsenic poisoning. Slow arsenic poisoning, I assume.
    I suspect a lot of husbands and perhaps overbearing fathers and brothers were knocked off with a little something from the plant world. I remember reading about a part of the country where it was supposedly common, with the knowledge passed around the women.
    Now that’d balance the excessive powers given to men by the law back then!
    Jo

    Reply
  50. Fascinating, Pat. I didn’t know diabetes was a symptom of arsenic poisoning. Slow arsenic poisoning, I assume.
    I suspect a lot of husbands and perhaps overbearing fathers and brothers were knocked off with a little something from the plant world. I remember reading about a part of the country where it was supposedly common, with the knowledge passed around the women.
    Now that’d balance the excessive powers given to men by the law back then!
    Jo

    Reply
  51. I have a couple of books on herbal remedies if anyone requires information. It doesn’t take much reading between the lines to figure out which of them will kill if used correctly. Er, I mean incorrectly, of course!

    Reply
  52. I have a couple of books on herbal remedies if anyone requires information. It doesn’t take much reading between the lines to figure out which of them will kill if used correctly. Er, I mean incorrectly, of course!

    Reply
  53. I have a couple of books on herbal remedies if anyone requires information. It doesn’t take much reading between the lines to figure out which of them will kill if used correctly. Er, I mean incorrectly, of course!

    Reply
  54. I have a couple of books on herbal remedies if anyone requires information. It doesn’t take much reading between the lines to figure out which of them will kill if used correctly. Er, I mean incorrectly, of course!

    Reply
  55. I have a couple of books on herbal remedies if anyone requires information. It doesn’t take much reading between the lines to figure out which of them will kill if used correctly. Er, I mean incorrectly, of course!

    Reply
  56. I discoverd I had juvenille diabeties about a year after meeting my husband. I always blamed it on heredity and now I discover it’s a symptom of chronic arsenic poisoning! Do you think if I point it out to my husband I’ll get better Christmas gift.
    Most people know that Type I diabetes can be preventable in some cases but juvenille or Type I diabetes still remains a mystery and is often inherited. Who knows, maybe families who originally survived arsonic poisoning may have passed on genes to their offspring that helped prevent or cause the disease.
    Whichever may be the case I think that the mystery surrounding the disease and it’s different causes would be a great element to introduce. Overeating, etc. leading to a king appearing “crazed”? Feeding the wicked stepmother cake to “send her over the edge”?
    The more readers who can become more aware of this disease and prevent it when possible is more important than ever especially for our children and grandchildrens.
    I would love to see this disease included in more books with it’s effect not only to the person affected but also their families.

    Reply
  57. I discoverd I had juvenille diabeties about a year after meeting my husband. I always blamed it on heredity and now I discover it’s a symptom of chronic arsenic poisoning! Do you think if I point it out to my husband I’ll get better Christmas gift.
    Most people know that Type I diabetes can be preventable in some cases but juvenille or Type I diabetes still remains a mystery and is often inherited. Who knows, maybe families who originally survived arsonic poisoning may have passed on genes to their offspring that helped prevent or cause the disease.
    Whichever may be the case I think that the mystery surrounding the disease and it’s different causes would be a great element to introduce. Overeating, etc. leading to a king appearing “crazed”? Feeding the wicked stepmother cake to “send her over the edge”?
    The more readers who can become more aware of this disease and prevent it when possible is more important than ever especially for our children and grandchildrens.
    I would love to see this disease included in more books with it’s effect not only to the person affected but also their families.

    Reply
  58. I discoverd I had juvenille diabeties about a year after meeting my husband. I always blamed it on heredity and now I discover it’s a symptom of chronic arsenic poisoning! Do you think if I point it out to my husband I’ll get better Christmas gift.
    Most people know that Type I diabetes can be preventable in some cases but juvenille or Type I diabetes still remains a mystery and is often inherited. Who knows, maybe families who originally survived arsonic poisoning may have passed on genes to their offspring that helped prevent or cause the disease.
    Whichever may be the case I think that the mystery surrounding the disease and it’s different causes would be a great element to introduce. Overeating, etc. leading to a king appearing “crazed”? Feeding the wicked stepmother cake to “send her over the edge”?
    The more readers who can become more aware of this disease and prevent it when possible is more important than ever especially for our children and grandchildrens.
    I would love to see this disease included in more books with it’s effect not only to the person affected but also their families.

    Reply
  59. I discoverd I had juvenille diabeties about a year after meeting my husband. I always blamed it on heredity and now I discover it’s a symptom of chronic arsenic poisoning! Do you think if I point it out to my husband I’ll get better Christmas gift.
    Most people know that Type I diabetes can be preventable in some cases but juvenille or Type I diabetes still remains a mystery and is often inherited. Who knows, maybe families who originally survived arsonic poisoning may have passed on genes to their offspring that helped prevent or cause the disease.
    Whichever may be the case I think that the mystery surrounding the disease and it’s different causes would be a great element to introduce. Overeating, etc. leading to a king appearing “crazed”? Feeding the wicked stepmother cake to “send her over the edge”?
    The more readers who can become more aware of this disease and prevent it when possible is more important than ever especially for our children and grandchildrens.
    I would love to see this disease included in more books with it’s effect not only to the person affected but also their families.

    Reply
  60. I discoverd I had juvenille diabeties about a year after meeting my husband. I always blamed it on heredity and now I discover it’s a symptom of chronic arsenic poisoning! Do you think if I point it out to my husband I’ll get better Christmas gift.
    Most people know that Type I diabetes can be preventable in some cases but juvenille or Type I diabetes still remains a mystery and is often inherited. Who knows, maybe families who originally survived arsonic poisoning may have passed on genes to their offspring that helped prevent or cause the disease.
    Whichever may be the case I think that the mystery surrounding the disease and it’s different causes would be a great element to introduce. Overeating, etc. leading to a king appearing “crazed”? Feeding the wicked stepmother cake to “send her over the edge”?
    The more readers who can become more aware of this disease and prevent it when possible is more important than ever especially for our children and grandchildrens.
    I would love to see this disease included in more books with it’s effect not only to the person affected but also their families.

    Reply
  61. oh, such lovely ideas you stir in this cauldron I call my head. Instead of the Stepford Wives, we cold have the Stepford Husbands who were terrified to do anything wrong for fear their wives would feed them elderberry cyanide!
    It might be interesting to see how much our historical characters might know about diabetes. I just finished a book where the heroine’s brother suffers from a form of Aspergers, but of course, they didn’t know about such things in the Regency. So really, all an author can do is list the symptoms and hope the readers “get” it.
    Given the crazed condition of the King during the Regency, one wonders if modern medicine could have cured him.

    Reply
  62. oh, such lovely ideas you stir in this cauldron I call my head. Instead of the Stepford Wives, we cold have the Stepford Husbands who were terrified to do anything wrong for fear their wives would feed them elderberry cyanide!
    It might be interesting to see how much our historical characters might know about diabetes. I just finished a book where the heroine’s brother suffers from a form of Aspergers, but of course, they didn’t know about such things in the Regency. So really, all an author can do is list the symptoms and hope the readers “get” it.
    Given the crazed condition of the King during the Regency, one wonders if modern medicine could have cured him.

    Reply
  63. oh, such lovely ideas you stir in this cauldron I call my head. Instead of the Stepford Wives, we cold have the Stepford Husbands who were terrified to do anything wrong for fear their wives would feed them elderberry cyanide!
    It might be interesting to see how much our historical characters might know about diabetes. I just finished a book where the heroine’s brother suffers from a form of Aspergers, but of course, they didn’t know about such things in the Regency. So really, all an author can do is list the symptoms and hope the readers “get” it.
    Given the crazed condition of the King during the Regency, one wonders if modern medicine could have cured him.

    Reply
  64. oh, such lovely ideas you stir in this cauldron I call my head. Instead of the Stepford Wives, we cold have the Stepford Husbands who were terrified to do anything wrong for fear their wives would feed them elderberry cyanide!
    It might be interesting to see how much our historical characters might know about diabetes. I just finished a book where the heroine’s brother suffers from a form of Aspergers, but of course, they didn’t know about such things in the Regency. So really, all an author can do is list the symptoms and hope the readers “get” it.
    Given the crazed condition of the King during the Regency, one wonders if modern medicine could have cured him.

    Reply
  65. oh, such lovely ideas you stir in this cauldron I call my head. Instead of the Stepford Wives, we cold have the Stepford Husbands who were terrified to do anything wrong for fear their wives would feed them elderberry cyanide!
    It might be interesting to see how much our historical characters might know about diabetes. I just finished a book where the heroine’s brother suffers from a form of Aspergers, but of course, they didn’t know about such things in the Regency. So really, all an author can do is list the symptoms and hope the readers “get” it.
    Given the crazed condition of the King during the Regency, one wonders if modern medicine could have cured him.

    Reply
  66. I always found it fascinating about the lead in the glass. Like Ben Franklin’s musical instrument?–it could eventually give you lead poisoning, I think. I remember being creeped out by that.
    And they gave arsenic for EVERYTHING back then. *LOL* Awful!!

    Reply
  67. I always found it fascinating about the lead in the glass. Like Ben Franklin’s musical instrument?–it could eventually give you lead poisoning, I think. I remember being creeped out by that.
    And they gave arsenic for EVERYTHING back then. *LOL* Awful!!

    Reply
  68. I always found it fascinating about the lead in the glass. Like Ben Franklin’s musical instrument?–it could eventually give you lead poisoning, I think. I remember being creeped out by that.
    And they gave arsenic for EVERYTHING back then. *LOL* Awful!!

    Reply
  69. I always found it fascinating about the lead in the glass. Like Ben Franklin’s musical instrument?–it could eventually give you lead poisoning, I think. I remember being creeped out by that.
    And they gave arsenic for EVERYTHING back then. *LOL* Awful!!

    Reply
  70. I always found it fascinating about the lead in the glass. Like Ben Franklin’s musical instrument?–it could eventually give you lead poisoning, I think. I remember being creeped out by that.
    And they gave arsenic for EVERYTHING back then. *LOL* Awful!!

    Reply
  71. Oh this was absolutely too lovely a way to practice Mary Jo’s procrastination. I wanted to find out about Franklin’s instrument but found lots of other lovely ways to murder our heroes!
    Lead glass in his decanter: http://www.thenibble.com/reviews/main/wine/lead-crystal.asp
    And even Franklin was aware of lead poisoning in typesetting and rum making: http://www.ledizolv.com/LearnAbout/LeadHazards/benfranklin.asp
    but the one on the glass armonica was disappointing: http://www.glassarmonica.com/armonica/lead_poisoning.php
    (except for the part where they mentioned Georgian ladies would wear their lead make-up for a week without washing! Gagme.)

    Reply
  72. Oh this was absolutely too lovely a way to practice Mary Jo’s procrastination. I wanted to find out about Franklin’s instrument but found lots of other lovely ways to murder our heroes!
    Lead glass in his decanter: http://www.thenibble.com/reviews/main/wine/lead-crystal.asp
    And even Franklin was aware of lead poisoning in typesetting and rum making: http://www.ledizolv.com/LearnAbout/LeadHazards/benfranklin.asp
    but the one on the glass armonica was disappointing: http://www.glassarmonica.com/armonica/lead_poisoning.php
    (except for the part where they mentioned Georgian ladies would wear their lead make-up for a week without washing! Gagme.)

    Reply
  73. Oh this was absolutely too lovely a way to practice Mary Jo’s procrastination. I wanted to find out about Franklin’s instrument but found lots of other lovely ways to murder our heroes!
    Lead glass in his decanter: http://www.thenibble.com/reviews/main/wine/lead-crystal.asp
    And even Franklin was aware of lead poisoning in typesetting and rum making: http://www.ledizolv.com/LearnAbout/LeadHazards/benfranklin.asp
    but the one on the glass armonica was disappointing: http://www.glassarmonica.com/armonica/lead_poisoning.php
    (except for the part where they mentioned Georgian ladies would wear their lead make-up for a week without washing! Gagme.)

    Reply
  74. Oh this was absolutely too lovely a way to practice Mary Jo’s procrastination. I wanted to find out about Franklin’s instrument but found lots of other lovely ways to murder our heroes!
    Lead glass in his decanter: http://www.thenibble.com/reviews/main/wine/lead-crystal.asp
    And even Franklin was aware of lead poisoning in typesetting and rum making: http://www.ledizolv.com/LearnAbout/LeadHazards/benfranklin.asp
    but the one on the glass armonica was disappointing: http://www.glassarmonica.com/armonica/lead_poisoning.php
    (except for the part where they mentioned Georgian ladies would wear their lead make-up for a week without washing! Gagme.)

    Reply
  75. Oh this was absolutely too lovely a way to practice Mary Jo’s procrastination. I wanted to find out about Franklin’s instrument but found lots of other lovely ways to murder our heroes!
    Lead glass in his decanter: http://www.thenibble.com/reviews/main/wine/lead-crystal.asp
    And even Franklin was aware of lead poisoning in typesetting and rum making: http://www.ledizolv.com/LearnAbout/LeadHazards/benfranklin.asp
    but the one on the glass armonica was disappointing: http://www.glassarmonica.com/armonica/lead_poisoning.php
    (except for the part where they mentioned Georgian ladies would wear their lead make-up for a week without washing! Gagme.)

    Reply
  76. Since there is already lead in the makeup, could you not add a little extra? I was going to suggest adding arsenic to a face cream or cleanser, but if they left their makeup on for extended periods, just add the arsenic to the makeup. It would certainly be absorbed faster.
    Thanks for an interesting post.

    Reply
  77. Since there is already lead in the makeup, could you not add a little extra? I was going to suggest adding arsenic to a face cream or cleanser, but if they left their makeup on for extended periods, just add the arsenic to the makeup. It would certainly be absorbed faster.
    Thanks for an interesting post.

    Reply
  78. Since there is already lead in the makeup, could you not add a little extra? I was going to suggest adding arsenic to a face cream or cleanser, but if they left their makeup on for extended periods, just add the arsenic to the makeup. It would certainly be absorbed faster.
    Thanks for an interesting post.

    Reply
  79. Since there is already lead in the makeup, could you not add a little extra? I was going to suggest adding arsenic to a face cream or cleanser, but if they left their makeup on for extended periods, just add the arsenic to the makeup. It would certainly be absorbed faster.
    Thanks for an interesting post.

    Reply
  80. Since there is already lead in the makeup, could you not add a little extra? I was going to suggest adding arsenic to a face cream or cleanser, but if they left their makeup on for extended periods, just add the arsenic to the makeup. It would certainly be absorbed faster.
    Thanks for an interesting post.

    Reply
  81. I loved this article – fascinating to think of all those people who suffered from arsenic and lead and mercury poisoning through the 18th and 19th centuries. I often think of the women who painted their faces with white lead paint to cover the ravages on their skin – never suspecting that it was the paint itself doing the damage! Your story also reminded me of Georgette Heyer’s own encounter with arsenic – prescribed for her for a skin ailment in the late 1930s. She took it in ever increasing doses until it made her so ill that she eventually threw it away! (luckily for her readers)

    Reply
  82. I loved this article – fascinating to think of all those people who suffered from arsenic and lead and mercury poisoning through the 18th and 19th centuries. I often think of the women who painted their faces with white lead paint to cover the ravages on their skin – never suspecting that it was the paint itself doing the damage! Your story also reminded me of Georgette Heyer’s own encounter with arsenic – prescribed for her for a skin ailment in the late 1930s. She took it in ever increasing doses until it made her so ill that she eventually threw it away! (luckily for her readers)

    Reply
  83. I loved this article – fascinating to think of all those people who suffered from arsenic and lead and mercury poisoning through the 18th and 19th centuries. I often think of the women who painted their faces with white lead paint to cover the ravages on their skin – never suspecting that it was the paint itself doing the damage! Your story also reminded me of Georgette Heyer’s own encounter with arsenic – prescribed for her for a skin ailment in the late 1930s. She took it in ever increasing doses until it made her so ill that she eventually threw it away! (luckily for her readers)

    Reply
  84. I loved this article – fascinating to think of all those people who suffered from arsenic and lead and mercury poisoning through the 18th and 19th centuries. I often think of the women who painted their faces with white lead paint to cover the ravages on their skin – never suspecting that it was the paint itself doing the damage! Your story also reminded me of Georgette Heyer’s own encounter with arsenic – prescribed for her for a skin ailment in the late 1930s. She took it in ever increasing doses until it made her so ill that she eventually threw it away! (luckily for her readers)

    Reply
  85. I loved this article – fascinating to think of all those people who suffered from arsenic and lead and mercury poisoning through the 18th and 19th centuries. I often think of the women who painted their faces with white lead paint to cover the ravages on their skin – never suspecting that it was the paint itself doing the damage! Your story also reminded me of Georgette Heyer’s own encounter with arsenic – prescribed for her for a skin ailment in the late 1930s. She took it in ever increasing doses until it made her so ill that she eventually threw it away! (luckily for her readers)

    Reply
  86. Years ago, I researched Diabetes for a short story which I wrote that took place during the Crusades. As part of that research I discovered that Diabetes was historically referred to as the sweet urine disease. I never wanted to speculate on exactly how they came up with the name.
    Smiles,
    Teresa (AT) LadySilk (DOT) Com

    Reply
  87. Years ago, I researched Diabetes for a short story which I wrote that took place during the Crusades. As part of that research I discovered that Diabetes was historically referred to as the sweet urine disease. I never wanted to speculate on exactly how they came up with the name.
    Smiles,
    Teresa (AT) LadySilk (DOT) Com

    Reply
  88. Years ago, I researched Diabetes for a short story which I wrote that took place during the Crusades. As part of that research I discovered that Diabetes was historically referred to as the sweet urine disease. I never wanted to speculate on exactly how they came up with the name.
    Smiles,
    Teresa (AT) LadySilk (DOT) Com

    Reply
  89. Years ago, I researched Diabetes for a short story which I wrote that took place during the Crusades. As part of that research I discovered that Diabetes was historically referred to as the sweet urine disease. I never wanted to speculate on exactly how they came up with the name.
    Smiles,
    Teresa (AT) LadySilk (DOT) Com

    Reply
  90. Years ago, I researched Diabetes for a short story which I wrote that took place during the Crusades. As part of that research I discovered that Diabetes was historically referred to as the sweet urine disease. I never wanted to speculate on exactly how they came up with the name.
    Smiles,
    Teresa (AT) LadySilk (DOT) Com

    Reply
  91. How fascinating to learn how people made themselves ill (or dead) by the simply method of beautifying their surrounds!!!! Bad enough that the medical situation was not up to par, but to think that by putting up the latest fad in wallpaper, one could put one’s life in jeopardy!!! Of course, we still have the possibility of the mold problem in this more modern time. Those of us who are allergic to mold know about that! At least we have the internet to help us deal with that kind of problem. And I remember when we had no such thing to help – only books, magazines and newspapers. These things were certainly not as helpful because they did not cover as much territory. We are a much blessed society and do not seem to know it.

    Reply
  92. How fascinating to learn how people made themselves ill (or dead) by the simply method of beautifying their surrounds!!!! Bad enough that the medical situation was not up to par, but to think that by putting up the latest fad in wallpaper, one could put one’s life in jeopardy!!! Of course, we still have the possibility of the mold problem in this more modern time. Those of us who are allergic to mold know about that! At least we have the internet to help us deal with that kind of problem. And I remember when we had no such thing to help – only books, magazines and newspapers. These things were certainly not as helpful because they did not cover as much territory. We are a much blessed society and do not seem to know it.

    Reply
  93. How fascinating to learn how people made themselves ill (or dead) by the simply method of beautifying their surrounds!!!! Bad enough that the medical situation was not up to par, but to think that by putting up the latest fad in wallpaper, one could put one’s life in jeopardy!!! Of course, we still have the possibility of the mold problem in this more modern time. Those of us who are allergic to mold know about that! At least we have the internet to help us deal with that kind of problem. And I remember when we had no such thing to help – only books, magazines and newspapers. These things were certainly not as helpful because they did not cover as much territory. We are a much blessed society and do not seem to know it.

    Reply
  94. How fascinating to learn how people made themselves ill (or dead) by the simply method of beautifying their surrounds!!!! Bad enough that the medical situation was not up to par, but to think that by putting up the latest fad in wallpaper, one could put one’s life in jeopardy!!! Of course, we still have the possibility of the mold problem in this more modern time. Those of us who are allergic to mold know about that! At least we have the internet to help us deal with that kind of problem. And I remember when we had no such thing to help – only books, magazines and newspapers. These things were certainly not as helpful because they did not cover as much territory. We are a much blessed society and do not seem to know it.

    Reply
  95. How fascinating to learn how people made themselves ill (or dead) by the simply method of beautifying their surrounds!!!! Bad enough that the medical situation was not up to par, but to think that by putting up the latest fad in wallpaper, one could put one’s life in jeopardy!!! Of course, we still have the possibility of the mold problem in this more modern time. Those of us who are allergic to mold know about that! At least we have the internet to help us deal with that kind of problem. And I remember when we had no such thing to help – only books, magazines and newspapers. These things were certainly not as helpful because they did not cover as much territory. We are a much blessed society and do not seem to know it.

    Reply
  96. I am loving this post and the comments to it! I just had a great laugh reading through all the more “natural” ideas of ways to kill off characters. Jeanne, your post about juvenile diabetes was especially interesting… I wonder if it really could be possible that families have passed along some kind of genetic mutation in response to arsenic poisoning that could affect later generations’ susceptibility to diabetes. That would be a fascinating topic to do more research into.

    Reply
  97. I am loving this post and the comments to it! I just had a great laugh reading through all the more “natural” ideas of ways to kill off characters. Jeanne, your post about juvenile diabetes was especially interesting… I wonder if it really could be possible that families have passed along some kind of genetic mutation in response to arsenic poisoning that could affect later generations’ susceptibility to diabetes. That would be a fascinating topic to do more research into.

    Reply
  98. I am loving this post and the comments to it! I just had a great laugh reading through all the more “natural” ideas of ways to kill off characters. Jeanne, your post about juvenile diabetes was especially interesting… I wonder if it really could be possible that families have passed along some kind of genetic mutation in response to arsenic poisoning that could affect later generations’ susceptibility to diabetes. That would be a fascinating topic to do more research into.

    Reply
  99. I am loving this post and the comments to it! I just had a great laugh reading through all the more “natural” ideas of ways to kill off characters. Jeanne, your post about juvenile diabetes was especially interesting… I wonder if it really could be possible that families have passed along some kind of genetic mutation in response to arsenic poisoning that could affect later generations’ susceptibility to diabetes. That would be a fascinating topic to do more research into.

    Reply
  100. I am loving this post and the comments to it! I just had a great laugh reading through all the more “natural” ideas of ways to kill off characters. Jeanne, your post about juvenile diabetes was especially interesting… I wonder if it really could be possible that families have passed along some kind of genetic mutation in response to arsenic poisoning that could affect later generations’ susceptibility to diabetes. That would be a fascinating topic to do more research into.

    Reply
  101. No, sorry, painters don’t go “crazy” or insane from using past toxic oil paints. Yes, it is possible for an artist to acquire combined allergic reactions to chemicals in paints, pastels, painting mediums, turpentine, etc. Lead & arsenic poisoning from paint would cause headaches, blurred vision, stomach aches, asthma, rashes, runny nose. Thankfully, the paints are all less toxic chemicals, more synthetic pigments. I’m an artist in her 50’s, & stopped using lead paint, pure linseed oil & turpentine back in 1977.
    Did you see the news report about the woman in a Russian village who was the poisoner of husbands that wives wanted dead?
    She rinsed hot water through fly catcher coils, releasing the poison, which was then added to bad-husband’s drink and/or food. The women saw it as Rx against domestic violence in their community.

    Reply
  102. No, sorry, painters don’t go “crazy” or insane from using past toxic oil paints. Yes, it is possible for an artist to acquire combined allergic reactions to chemicals in paints, pastels, painting mediums, turpentine, etc. Lead & arsenic poisoning from paint would cause headaches, blurred vision, stomach aches, asthma, rashes, runny nose. Thankfully, the paints are all less toxic chemicals, more synthetic pigments. I’m an artist in her 50’s, & stopped using lead paint, pure linseed oil & turpentine back in 1977.
    Did you see the news report about the woman in a Russian village who was the poisoner of husbands that wives wanted dead?
    She rinsed hot water through fly catcher coils, releasing the poison, which was then added to bad-husband’s drink and/or food. The women saw it as Rx against domestic violence in their community.

    Reply
  103. No, sorry, painters don’t go “crazy” or insane from using past toxic oil paints. Yes, it is possible for an artist to acquire combined allergic reactions to chemicals in paints, pastels, painting mediums, turpentine, etc. Lead & arsenic poisoning from paint would cause headaches, blurred vision, stomach aches, asthma, rashes, runny nose. Thankfully, the paints are all less toxic chemicals, more synthetic pigments. I’m an artist in her 50’s, & stopped using lead paint, pure linseed oil & turpentine back in 1977.
    Did you see the news report about the woman in a Russian village who was the poisoner of husbands that wives wanted dead?
    She rinsed hot water through fly catcher coils, releasing the poison, which was then added to bad-husband’s drink and/or food. The women saw it as Rx against domestic violence in their community.

    Reply
  104. No, sorry, painters don’t go “crazy” or insane from using past toxic oil paints. Yes, it is possible for an artist to acquire combined allergic reactions to chemicals in paints, pastels, painting mediums, turpentine, etc. Lead & arsenic poisoning from paint would cause headaches, blurred vision, stomach aches, asthma, rashes, runny nose. Thankfully, the paints are all less toxic chemicals, more synthetic pigments. I’m an artist in her 50’s, & stopped using lead paint, pure linseed oil & turpentine back in 1977.
    Did you see the news report about the woman in a Russian village who was the poisoner of husbands that wives wanted dead?
    She rinsed hot water through fly catcher coils, releasing the poison, which was then added to bad-husband’s drink and/or food. The women saw it as Rx against domestic violence in their community.

    Reply
  105. No, sorry, painters don’t go “crazy” or insane from using past toxic oil paints. Yes, it is possible for an artist to acquire combined allergic reactions to chemicals in paints, pastels, painting mediums, turpentine, etc. Lead & arsenic poisoning from paint would cause headaches, blurred vision, stomach aches, asthma, rashes, runny nose. Thankfully, the paints are all less toxic chemicals, more synthetic pigments. I’m an artist in her 50’s, & stopped using lead paint, pure linseed oil & turpentine back in 1977.
    Did you see the news report about the woman in a Russian village who was the poisoner of husbands that wives wanted dead?
    She rinsed hot water through fly catcher coils, releasing the poison, which was then added to bad-husband’s drink and/or food. The women saw it as Rx against domestic violence in their community.

    Reply

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