C. Stokes
1848 The Lancet  
In the month of July, 181'7, MARy-ANN HUNT, then an epileptic woman, committed (according'to evidence) a murder upon an aged person of her own sex. In the month of September she was tried, found guilty, and condemned to death. In bar of execution, she pleaded pregnancy, and straightway a jury of matrons was empanelled, under Mr. Baron PLATT, to try whether she was quick with child or not. The jury of matrons retired with the prisoner for a short time, and then returned with a verdict that she
more » ... verdict that she was not quick with child, and upon this verdict, the wretched woman was ordered by the Judge for execution. The daily newspapers merely recorded the facts; there did not seem to arise in the minds of any of the parties concerned, or in the public press, any perception of the ludicrous yet cruel position into which the law had
doi:10.1016/s0140-6736(02)88378-7 fatcat:a7wn2yrpzrbf5dkkvwmexo7tja