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Bell's Weekly Messenger

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(No.1828, Sunday, April 10, 1831)

A few days since the following shocking suicide took place in Thomas street, Southwark:—a young man named John Holmes, accountant, in the employ of Mr. Ralph Lindsay, solicitor, was observed, during the day, to talk very incoherently, but no alarm was occasioned until about half-past four in the afternoon, when one of his fellow clerks entering the office, he exclaimed— "Oh, Mantle, I have destroyed myself—I have taken poison!" pointing to an empty phial near him. Mr. Bayfield, a surgeon, was immediately sent for, who advised his being sent to Guy's Hospital, where, soon after his admission, he vomited a large quantity of vitriol mixed with blood. With all possible speed the stomach-pump was applied by Mr. Whittington, and alkaline matter injected, but without effect, the unhappy man expiring in 20 minutes from the time of swallowing the fatal draught, in insufferable agony. All that was learnt from him was, that he had been troubled in his mind.—Verdict—Temporary Insanity