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Aqua Tofana

Aqua Tofana

Just after Christmas I gave an interview to Shawna Potter, of the hardcore punk band War on Women, on the subject of Aqua Tofana, the supposed “slow poison” used by several hundred Italian women to dispose of abusive or unwanted husbands in the middle of the 17th century. The poison was the subject of a song on the band’s new album; we discussed the historical background and talked a bit about the differences between the historian’s art – which is all about balance and nuance and trying not to go beyond the evidence – and the songwriters’, which in Shawna’s case is often about anger. It was an enjoyable interview to do and Shawna is a much more than usually interesting host. The pod – look for Episode 1 – is available at this link; no transcript is available for now.

About Mike Dash

Historian of the exceptional, the evocative and the unusual.


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