But he was wrong, for now rumours were started that the Government analyst and Dr Gollipeck had found poison in the stomach, and that, moreover, the real criminal would be soon discovered. Public opinion was much divided as to who the criminal was—some, having heard the story of Madame’s marriage, said it was her husband; others insisted Kitty Marchurst was the culprit, and was trying to shield herself behind this wild story of the hand coming from behind the curtains; while others were in favour of suicide. At all events, on the morning when the inquest was resumed, and the evidence was to be given of the analysis of the stomach, the Court was crowded, and a dead silence pervaded the place when the Government analyst stood up to give his evidence. Madame Midas was present, with Kitty seated beside her, the latter looking pale and ill; and Kilsip, with a gratified smile on his face which seemed as though he had got a clue to the whole mystery, was seated next to Calton. Vandeloup, faultlessly dressed, and as cool and calm as possible, was also in Court; and Dr Gollipeck, as he awaited his turn to give evidence, could not help admiring the marvellous nerve and courage of the young man.
The Government analyst being called, was sworn in the usual way, and deposed that the stomach of the deceased had been sent to him to be analysed. He had used the usual tests, and found the presence of the alkaloid of hemlock, known under the name of conia. In his opinion the death of the deceased was caused by the administration of an extract of hemlock. (Sensation in the Court.)
Q. Then in your opinion the deceased has been poisoned?
A. Yes, I have not the least doubt on the subject, I detected the conia very soon after the tests were applied.
There was great excitement when this evidence was concluded, as it gave quite a new interest to the case. The question as to the cause of death was now set at rest—the deceased had been murdered, so the burning anxiety of every one was to know who had committed the crime. All sorts of opinions were given, but the murmur of voices ceased when Dr Gollipeck stood up to give his evidence.
He deposed that he was a medical practitioner, practising at Ballarat; he had seen the report of the case in the papers, and had come down to Melbourne as he thought he could throw a certain light on the affair—for instance, where the poison was procured. (Sensation.) About three years ago a crime had been committed in Paris, which caused a great sensation at the time. The case being a peculiar one, was reported in a medical work, by Messieurs Prevol and Lebrun, which he had obtained from France some two years back. The facts of the case were shortly these: An actress called Adele Blondet died from the effects of poison, administered to her by Octave Braulard, who was her lover; the deceased had also another lover, called Kestrike, who was supposed to be implicated in the