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'I'm Convinced Jane Austen Was Poisoned By Arsenic': A Startling Revelation By One Of Britain's Leading Novelists

11/14/2011 10:10 am ET

Tucked away in a drawer in the Hampshire cottage where Jane Austen lived is a glass case containing a wispy, faded lock of her hair. Like the thousands of tourists who visit the place each year, I’d pulled out the drawer and glanced at the tangled strands, never suspecting that they could hold the key to her early death at the age of just 41 in 1817.

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