biblio_filia (biblio_filia) wrote in little_details,
biblio_filia
biblio_filia
little_details

Poison absorbed through skin/Poisoned dress

I'm looking for a poison that is readily absorbed (or plausibly capable of being absorbed) through the skin. I need to kill a character this way, namely through the wearing of a poisoned dress. I know the reality of poisoned clothing is iffy at best, but I would love to find a way to make it happen because it would be so beautiful and perfect for my ending. I'm open to any poison, plant, chemical, venom, whatever, as long as it would be available at the end of the 19th century. My specific setting is Newport, Rhode Island, c. 1895 or so, just for reference. The person obtaining the poison is a member of royalty, so she'd have access to pretty much anything, no matter the cost or the rarity. I also don't really care how long the poison takes to cause symptoms, although it can't be more than a few days, if that.

I'm mostly concerned with pinpointing a possible poison so that I can portray believable symptoms. I also need for another character to be able to touch the character wearing the poisoned dress without absorbing so much that he dies himself. He can be affected and even become moderately ill, but I need him in functioning order. I would also prefer that the symptoms not be too horrifying, but I can work around that.

I've Googled variations of "poisons absorbed through skin", "poisons readily absorbed through skin", read the Wikipedia entry on poisons and the entries on arsenic, cyanide, cadmium, and mercury, and Googled for the symptoms of all those terms as well. I've also gone over the entries under the "poisons" and "poisoning" tags. Thanks in advance for providing me with the means to an intense conclusion.
Tags: ~medicine: poisoning
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