Criminalia

Criminalia

Humans have always committed crimes. What can we learn from the criminals and crimes of the past, and have humans gotten better or worse over time?... Show More

Episodes

October 20, 2020 33 min
Sarah Chesham, or “Sally Arsenic” as she became known, was convicted of a single count of poisoning with intent -- the victim, her husband. But the evidence indicates, and the public certainly believed, that she was responsible for several poisoning deaths including two of her children.
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Catherine Monvoisin, known as "La Voisin," was accused of witchcraft, found guilty, and executed in 1680 when she was about 40 years old. She practiced medicine, specifically midwifery, and performed abortions which were illegal in France at that time. But she was known as the local fortune teller, and was a commissioned poisoner, said to help women trapped in abusive marriages.
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Marie-Madeleine-Marguerite d'Aubray, Marquise de Brinvilliers was found guilty of poisoning her father and two brothers -- and maybe her husband and daughter. Because her conviction was based on the strength of letters written by her dead lover and a confession that was obtained by torture, her guilt remains uncertain.
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French Queen Catherine de Medici may or may not have introduced the artichoke to France. And yes, she may be at least partly responsible for starting the French Wars of Religion. But were the accusations Catherine was a homicidal poisoner true?
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The most interesting thing about Marie Besnard might not be that she was accused of poisoning about a dozen people. It's that she got away with it -- and got wealthier with each murder.
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Sally Basset was an enslaved woman who was executed in 1730 for allegedly attempting to poison her granddaughter’s enslavers. She is known throughout Bermudian folklore, where she is, to many, a hero.
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Giulia Tofana was an Italian apothecary known for her beauty, her secrecy and her poisonous proclivities. If the numbers are all to be believed, she may be the most successful serial killer you’ve never heard of.
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September 1, 2020 32 min
Marie was convicted of murdering her husband by poisoning him with arsenic. But what's most notable about that in doing so, she became the first person ever to be convicted based on direct forensic toxicological evidence, like on Dexter or CSI.
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Julia Agrippina was a power-hungry Roman empress – power-hungry even by Roman standards – who is said to have poisoned her husband (who also happened to be her uncle) to ensure her only son's succession to the throne.
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On Criminalia, hosts Holly Frey and Maria Trimarchi explroe the intersection of history and true crime. This season is all about lady poisoners. During the time that Chicago’s most visible criminal element was organized crime, Tillie Klimek was quietly becoming the city’s most prolific female serial killer. She allegedly killed between six and 20 people, all through arsenic poisoning.
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August 10, 2020 2 min
Humans have always committed crimes. What can we learn from the criminals and crimes of the past, and have humans gotten better or worse over time? 
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