I found this story on The Spooky Isles blog here. The original soure was The Illustrated Police News, Saturday, August 21st, 1897.


The article reads:

“A horrible affair has come to light in Paris. An Italian workman named Carenta, aged fifty, lived at 25, Rue Morand with a woman named Adeline Viard to whom he was intensely attached. Some time ago the woman fell ill and ultimately died, to the great grief of Carenta.

He was so affected by the death that he would not allow the body to be removed from the room in which death took place, but sat with it, brooding over it and mourning his loss, until it is supposed his reason gave way.

He then conceived the idea that if he could feed the corpse it would return to life.

Seizing a knife he cut the mouth until there was a gaping slit from ear to ear, and into the throat he rammed every description of eatables he could put his hands to, and uttering the most horrible cries the while.

As the body did not show any signs of returning to life, he dragged it from the bed, and holding it in his arms, danced round and round the room with it, shrieking loudly.

The neighbours, alarmed at the uproar, broke into the house and discovered what he had done, whereupon he became raving, and savagely attacked them.

It took a number of policemen to overpower him and remove him to the asylum, where he now is, a violent lunatic.”

These stories are, of course, very typical for the time in terms of fetishizing the idea of the lunatic. I have no idea how true any of this is, since it's reeks of Gothic invention, but it's still interesting to see the treatment of mentally ill people in the Victorian era. Note that there is very little about their relationship, how she died, or how he is being treated and if there is any chance for recovery. Nope. It's all sensational face gouging and shrieking and attacking innocent bystanders.

Can anyone locate any corroborating news stories that might prove if this was a fake or not?

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One Response to Reanimation

  1. Pingback: BizarreVictoria: Celebrating 3 Years | BizarreVictoria

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