Thursday, September 22, 2011

Balapa (or, Valapa), the Hungarian “Poison Witch” Serial Killer - 1905


FULL TEXT (Article 1 of 2): Six women have been arrested at Hodmezo-Vasarhely, in Hungary, for poisoning their husbands.

The police found that they had visited a reputed witch named Balapa, and went to arrest her. When Balapa heard that she was to be tried for complicity she swallowed a quantity of poison, but recovered after an antidote had been administered.

She then made a full confession of having sold poison to the women in custody.

Further inquiries have brought to light twenty cases of infanticide in which Balapa is believed to be implicated, and a number of women have been arrested on a charge of having caused the children’s deaths.

[“A Witch Poisoner,” The Daily News (Perth, W. Australia), Jul. 10, 1905, p. 1]

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FULL TEXT (Article 2 of 2): Hold-Mezo Vasarhely, Hungary, June 1. – A great sensation has been created here over the arrest of an old woman by the name of Valapa, who is accused of being implicated in a wholesale murder affair. The woman is charged with having supplied the poison with which six women killed their husbands.

When she was arrested Valapa swallowed some of her own poison, but was revived. She made a confession in which she admitted assisting in the half-dozen murders.  It is also believed that she is responsible for a score of infanticides which have occurred recently. The wives are also being arrested.

[“Wholesale Murder – Old Woman Confesses to Having Furnished Poison With Which Six Women Killed Their Husbands.” Reading Times (Pa.), Jun. 2, 1905, p. 1]

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Painting: by Bela Endre (born in Hodmezo-Vasarhely), “Bolco mellett,” 1905

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For more than two dozen similar cases, dating from 1658 to 2011, see the summary list with links see: The Husband-Killing Syndicates

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