Murder Pamphlets: Elizabeth Caldwell & the Worldly Husband

Photo by CHUTTERSNAP on Unsplash

On June 18, 1603, Elizabeth Caldwell was hanged. She’d been convicted of murder after conspiring to murder her husband and instead killing a bystander. A 1604 murder pamphlet called A True Discourse of the Practices of Elizabeth Caldwell tells the story.

Like other murder pamphlets, this one is hyperbolic. It manipulates the reader, trying to impress upon us a…

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