THE LAST DYING WORDS, SPEECH, & CONFESSION
Who was Convicted at the last Lincoln Assizes, for the Horrid Mur-
der of her Step-Son, J. Warriner, by poison, and who was Exe-
cuted at the City of Linclon, an Saturday the 27th of Oct 1821.
ELIZABETH WARRINER was indicted for the Murder of J. Warriner, her Step-Son,
at Surfleet, by administering poison to him. The prisoner was the second wife of a
Farmer. The deceased was his Son by a former marriage, about 12 years of age. From
the period of her marriage, the prisoner treated the child with great cruelty On various
occasions she was heard to say she would be the death of him. At length on the morning
stated in the indictment, the boy, immediately after breakfast, which consisted of bread and
milk, was taken ill. Medical aid was called in, but he breathed his last in the course of the
day. After she had poisoned the unfortunate boy, she dragged him out of the house, and
put him in the stable, and hanged him up, with a rope round his neck, to make people be-
lieve he had hung himself, as there was no marks of violence round the neck. The body
was opened by a surgeon, when the stomach and intestines were found to exhibit all the ap-
pearance of arsenic having been administered. It was afterwards ascertained that a quan-
\ill\ of arsenic was in the possession of the father, who used it for some husbandry purpose,
\ill\ which the prisoner had access. It further turned out, that a small quantity was found
\ill\ he basin from which he had eaten his breakfast: and that the prisoner had given him his
\ill\ kfast in that basin. This on circumstance, added to a variety of others, which is the
\ill\ se of the examination of the witnesses, seven in numher, came out, led to to the conclu-
\ill\ that the prisoner administered the poison.
Mr. Justice Holroyd summed up tne evidence, and the Jury found her gulity, The
\ill\ in passing sentence, obserted to the prisoner, that the crime of murder in all cases
\ill\ an heinous one, and in all countries was punished with death; but there were gradations
\ill\ in this crime, and her's was of the worst nature. She had destroyed her Step-Son; and
no other motive could be assigned than that arising from a cruel, hardened, and vicious dis-
position-her crime was that of muder, the most heinous and cruel.-He hoped she would
sincerely repent of her crime, and take all possible care of her soul during the few hours she
had to live, so to be reconciled to her offended Maker; he feared she was not so convinced
of the necessity of this as she ought to be, but trusted she would seek for that advice which
would satisfy her of that necessity, and enable her to meet her future Judge, with a well-
rounded hope in his mercy from the sincerity of her contrition; all that remained for him to
do was to pass sentence upon her which the law required, which was, that she should be
taken from whence she came, and on Saturday the 27th October, 1821, to be taken from
thence, to the place of execution, there to be hanged by the neck till she was dead, and that
her body should be delivered to the surgeons for dissection-concluding with- "and may
the Lord have mercy on your soul "
The moment she heard that her life was to be forfeited for the barbarous murder, and her
cruel treatment to her Step-Son, she jumped up from the floor in the greatest agony, wring-
ing her hands, and other symptoms of distraction.
About ten o'clock on Saturday morning, she ascended the fatal scaffold with a greater de-
gree of fortitude and resignation than could have been expected; and addressed the numer-
ous spectators around her in nearly the following words; "Good people, you see now be-
fore you an unfortunate woman, cut off just in the prime of life, and for the most dreadful of
al crimes, Murder! let my dreadful fate be a warning to you not to suffer your passion to
work forcibly on your minds, which has been the cause of the melancholy situation in which
I am now placed; let me beg your prayers- good people pray for me; O pray for me."
On the morning of her awful execution, she was dressed all in white, with a child suckling
at her breast, which was taken from her by the executioner and her melancholy cries was
heard at a great distance. It was shocking to the surrounding multitude.
She then dropped a handkerchief she held in her hand, as a signal, crying, O my Child! my
Child ! and was immediately launched into a dreadful eternity.
printed by John Muir, Glasgow.
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Probable date published:
1821 shelfmark: APS.4.82.34
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