Monday, January 13, 2014

Mystery of Alexander the Great's death solved? Ruler was 'killed by toxic wine' claim scientists - UK Independent

Mystery of Alexander the Great's death solved? Ruler was 'killed by toxic wine' claim scientists - Science - News - The Independent

Alexander the Great may have been killed by toxic wine made from a poisonous but harmless-looking plant, scientists have claimed.

The mystery of why the Greek King of Macedon, ruler of the largest empire in the ancient world, died at just 32 has baffled historians and scientists for over 2000 years.

Some argue that he passed due to natural causes while others believe he was secretly murdered using poison at a celebratory banquet.

His death in 323BCE came at the palace of Nebuchadnezzar II in Babylon after he developed a fever and soon became unable to speak and walk. He was ill for 12 days.

Dr Leo Schep, a toxicologist from New Zealand’s National Poisons Centre says it is impossible that poisons such as arsenic were to blame - as cited in some theories - as death would have come too fast.

Instead, in his new research, Dr Schep argues that the most likely culprit was Veratrum album, a poisonous plant from the lily family also known as white or false hellebore....

-bth: amazing that it would take 2300 years for scientific work to be done on this. I wonder where is body is?