Death from poisoning was not uncommon in the days before the regulation of poisons. Arsenic trioxide (usually referred to as simply "arsenic") was a common feature of everyday life in Victorian Britain.
A brief history of crime and punishment from the 17th to 19th centuries. The Wakefield House of Correction, Rothwell Debtors' Prison and York Castle Prison are highlighted. The article gives family case histories of those who skirted the edges of the law and were sometimes punished.
A look at the treatment of madness form the middle ages to the present with particular emphasis on the West Riding Asylums and individual cases from the author's family history.