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The Marquess of Queensberry is as famous for his role in the downfall of one of our greatest literary geniuses as he was for helping establish the rules for modern-day boxing. The trial and two-year imprisonment of Oscar Wilde, lover of Queensberryâ TMs son, Lord Alfred Douglas, remains one of literary historyâ TMs great tragedies. However, Linda Stratmann's riveting biography of the Marquess paints a far more complex picture by drawing on new sources and unpublished letters. Throughout his life, Queensberry was emotionally damaged by a series of tragedies, and the events of the Wilde affairâ "told for the first time from the Marquessâ TMs perspectiveâ "were directly linked to Queensberryâ TMs personal crises. Through the retelling of pivotal events from Queensberryâ TMs lifeâ "the death of his brother on the Matterhorn and his fruitless search for the body; the suicides of his father, brother, and eldest sonâ "the book reveals a well-meaning man often stricken with a grief he found hard to express, who deserves our compassion.
Murder by poison alarmed, enthralled, and in many ways encapsulated the Victorian age. Linda Stratmann's dark and splendid social history reveals the nineteenth century as a gruesome battleground where poisoners went head-to-head with authorities who strove to detect poisons, control their availability, and bring the guilty to justice. She corrects many misconceptions about particular poisons and documents how the evolution of issues such as marital rights and the legal protection of children impacted poisonings. Combining archival research with a novelist's eye, Stratmann charts the era's inexorable rise of poison cases both shocking and sad.
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