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Tag: crime

The Murder Of David Rizzio

On 9th March 1566, David Rizzio, Mary Queen of Scots’ private secretary, was assassinated in front of the heavily pregnant Queen. Many consider it the beginning of the end for Mary. But why? And who was Rizzio? What had he done to deserve such a fate? David Riccio di Pancalieri was born in 1533 in

The Murder Of Lord William Russell

Lord William Russell, a member of Parliament, was murdered in his sleep. His body was found by his maid on 6th April 1840. The initial signs pointed to a robbery, as Viscount Melbourne explained in this short letter to Queen Victoria: Lord Melbourne presents his humble duty to your Majesty. He has just received this

The Tragic Case Of Beatrice Cenci

Beatrice Cenci was a victim of domestic abuse. When she retailed, she was arrested and executed. She was only 23 years old. The tragedy happened in Renaissance Rome. Born on 6 February 1577, Beatrice was the daughter of Count Francesco Cenci, a horrible and violent man with a terrible temper, which he often took out

Anglers, Fraters & Other Deceivers

In his book, The Town, Leigh Hunt, describes the various criminals who were infesting London during the reign of Charles II: “The Ruffler was a wretch who assumed the character of a maimed soldier, and begged from the claims of Naseby, Edgehill, Newbury, and Marston Moor. Those who were stationed in the city of London

A Singular Way Of Stealing Wigs

I was browsing the Anecdotes of the Manner and Customs of London During the Eighteenth Century book by James Peller Malcolm, when I came across this curious piece of news about a singular method of stealing wigs. The author presented it verbatim from the Weekly Journal of March 30 1717: “The Thieves have got such

Liberation From Prison

In the past few months, I have posted a couple of excerpts from Six years in the prisons of England, in which an anonymous merchant described his time in prison, and in its hospital ward. He was so badly cured there that he had to have his leg amputated. At the end of six long