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Madeleine Smith


1835 - 1928

Poisoner, who gave rise to a celebrated legal case. The daughter of a noted Glasgow architect, James Smith (1808-63), she became involved in an embarrassing love triangle with two men. To get herself out of this situation, she decided to kill the one who threatened to expose her, a Channel-Island born clerk called Pierre L'Angelier. When he died of arsenic poisoning, she was arrested and tried. The High Court in Edinburgh was read the contents of a large number of salacious love letters. Surprisingly, the jury found the case against her 'not proven', that unusual verdict found only in Scotland and she was set free.

She married twice, neither husband being her earlier lover, and emigrated for the USA in 1916, dying in New York at the grand age of 93.


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