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14th century ring used to poison drinks


Posted on Monday, 26 August, 2013 | Comment icon 12 comments

Poisoned drinks would have proven deadly. Image Credit: CC 2.0 Robert-Couse-Baker
Archaeologists in Bulgaria have uncovered a ring once used as a way to secretly poison people's drinks.
Dating back to the 14th century, the well worn ring was discovered at Cape Kaliakra, the site of a medieval fortress that is currently being excavated. The ring was designed to be worn on the little finger of the right hand, most likely by a male nobleman.

The wearer would likely have filled it with deadly poison and then surreptitiously emptied it in to the target's drink or food while either filling a glass or stretching across the table.

The find is particularly interesting because it shows that politically-motivated murders were potentially commonplace in medieval Bulgaria.

"I have no doubts that the hole is there on purpose and the ring was worn on the right hand, because the hole was made in such a way so as to be covered by a finger, so that the poison can be dropped at a moment’s notice," said Dr. Bonnie Petrunova who led the excavation. "This explains many of the unexplained deaths of cape among nobles and aristocrats close to Dobrotitca."

Source: Discovery News | Comments (12)

Tags: Posion, Ring, Bulgaria

Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #3 Posted by GreenmansGod on 24 August, 2013, 11:09
I love poison rings Alrighty then, you're not cooking my dinner,
Comment icon #4 Posted by brlesq1 on 25 August, 2013, 21:01
Wonder if they're going to do any analysis of the ring for the presence of poison. That would do a lot to bolster the claims.
Comment icon #5 Posted by Child of Bast on 26 August, 2013, 21:20
there's an awful lot of "most likely's" in the article... Well, archaeology is full of most likelies. Unless an object is found with an owner's certificate stating who it belonged to; which finger it was worn on; where it came from; when and where it was used; annnnnnnnnd if it was responsible for any deaths, all we have to go on are educated guesses.
Comment icon #6 Posted by MamaTweedy on 27 August, 2013, 1:12
Thats crazy
Comment icon #7 Posted by MrPringle on 27 August, 2013, 4:54
The old chinese used silver needle to check their emperor's food for poison and even on dead bodies during autopsy. Maybe that's why we use silverware on our dining tables. If the food is poisonous it would react to the utensils. It's safer if I carried a spoon around with me all the time.
Comment icon #8 Posted by Big Bad Voodoo on 27 August, 2013, 5:34
Proof that conspiracies were part of our history. Big Bad Voodoo
Comment icon #9 Posted by Cherry- on 27 August, 2013, 21:40
Very interesting.. i want one lol. I thought poison was a woman's weapon :/
Comment icon #10 Posted by s33ker on 27 August, 2013, 21:46
I want one too, must be a womens ring I think.
Comment icon #11 Posted by Big Bad Voodoo on 27 August, 2013, 21:48
I want one too, must be a womens ring I think. There are better deadliest womens ring trough out history. Big Bad Voodoo
Comment icon #12 Posted by rashore on 27 August, 2013, 21:49
I agree with some of the comments from the OP article that it is more likely to be an artifact or relic ring than a poison ring.


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