Signora Toffana

Tofana is mentioned in Brokgauz-Efron in the article on the poison Aqua Tofana. She was arrested, tortured, and strangled in prison in 1709. The poison was sold in vials with the picture of a saint as a cosmetic; wives who knew the contents could use it to poison their husbands.

According to an article in Science Reporter by Dr. Anil Aggrawal, "An Italian woman of the 17th Century, Toffana, invented a strong poisonous mixture in about 1690, and is reputed to have been responsible for as many as 600 killings! She is perhaps the greatest poisoner of all time. Her invention was called Agua Toffana, which literally means "the water of Toffana". It was a poisonous liquid containing the deadly arsenic. She sold it to the would-be-murderers who paid well for it and were instructed about its poisonous properties and its potential as a lethal weapon. She was executed at Naples in 1709."

Aqua toffana may have contained Atropa belladonna