Jane Austen A Victim of Arsenic Poisoning, A Curator Said [VIDEO]
Jane Austen, a distinguished writer in the 18th century, was known to have died due to cataract. But Dr. Sandra Tuppen, a lead curator at the British Library said that Austen has died of arsenic poisoning- a slow, accidental poisoning that led to the author's rest.
Jane Austen is the renowned author of classic novels like 'Emma' and 'Pride and Prejudice.' It has not been denied to the public that Jane suffered from poor eyesight and has long since believed that this problem led to her death as a result of a severe cataract. Dr. Tuppen argued otherwise. In a report released by the Tech Times, Tuppen said that Austen's cataract could not have worsened if not for the heavy metal arsenic component in her spectacles.
The British Library is now in possession of Jane Austen's glasses which were left behind in the writer's desk when she died. It was passed on to her sister Cassandra and was then considered as a family heirloom for decades until Joan Austen-Leigh, Jane Austen's 6th generation great-niece handed it over to the British Library for care and history relic purposes in Britain.
Three pairs of glasses were handed over and were studied for testing and proofs of her death, according to a source in the Town and Country Magazine. Research reveals that Austen used the three spectacles alternatingly based on where it's used. The Wire-Framed pair, for viewing in a distance and reading; Tortoiseshell pair A, for intensive reading and study; and Tortoiseshell pair B, for work that needs extreme detail and attention like fine embroidery- a hobby which Jane Austen have included in most of her pieces as one of her favorites.
Arsenic is a metalloid that has been found in three of Jane Austen's spectacles and Tuppen theorizes that the metalloid caused the severe cataract since it has already been linked with many cataract cases already.
Professor Simon Barnard, an optometrist, doesn't rule out the possibility of the theory but also says that further study should take place to verify or nullify such claims. Lindsay Ashford, a crime author, also shares the same belief as Tuppen does. When enough evidence is gathered, it would then be time for new generation writers not to follow Jane Austen's fate.