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Potions and Poisons of the Elizabethan Times

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by

Paige Smalbill

on 4 December 2014

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Transcript of Potions and Poisons of the Elizabethan Times

Potions and Poisons of the Elizabethan Times
Introduction
Potions and poisons were commonly used in the Elizabethan era, but were also used before then in ancient civilizations such as Greece and Rome.

Poison: A substance that is capable of causing the illness or death of a living organism when introduced or absorbed.

Potion: A liquid with healing , magical , or poisonous properties.
Poisons
Poisons were used in many different ways ,such as to kill another being , or even to just make them ill. Assasinations and murders using poisons were very common in this era.
Types of Poisons
Most poisons used were herbs.Chemical poisons were expensive and difficult to buy without raising suspicions .People looking to poison someone normally used herbs because they were easier to get without anyone knowing.
Common Poisons used were:
-Hemlock
-Arsenic
-Larkspur
-Meadow Saffron
An example of a chemical poison:Arsenic
Arsenic was a commonly used poison , in which people used not only to harm someone else, but also for beauty. Arsenic was mixed into vinegar and chalk , later to be put on the woman's face to whiten her skin ,prevent signs of aging , and give her that "perfect look". Not knowing that it was being absorbed into the woman's bloodstream and causing them to be at higher risk of heart disease , cancer, stroke, chronic lower respiratory diseases, and diabetes. It could've also caused night blindness.
Sources
http://www.examiner.com/article/arsenic-poisoning-101

https://answers.yahoo.com/question/index?qid=20101112170623AAODtLB

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Potion

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arsenic_poisoning

http://www.elizabethan-era.org.uk/elizabethan-superstitions.htm
Potions
Potions in the Elizabethan era were used for many different reasons , such as healing potions , magical potions and poisonous potions.
Types of potions
Anesthetic potions were used a lot by doctors and surgeons , harmful potions were also believed in being used or made by witches through witchcraft.
Ingredients used in potions :
-Mandrake
-Datura
-Monkshood
-Cannabis
-Belladonna
-Henbane
- Hemlock
An Example of Witchcraft and Anesthetic Potions
Witches were believed to ( In order to work their charms ) open graves and steal parts of peoples bodies to put and make in their potions.

A potion was used as an anesthetic to dull the excruciating pains of the surgeries that were only performed in life or death situations. This potion was used to put patience to sleep and was incredibly lethal.The ingredients in the anesthetic were: Lettuce juice , gall from custrated boar , briony , opium,henbane,hemlock juice(this alone could cause death), and vinegar.
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