A very singular cause of death was revealed at an inquest held on the body of a child of ten years, named Kate Weedon, who resided with her parents at Hoxton.
It appeared that the girl had read the well-known prophecies of Mother Shipton, and had consequently become very much alarmed, the more especially as the present year was quickly drawing to a close.
She very frequently cried and talked about the world coming to an end in 1881. On returning from school on the 17th inst., she was weeping bitterly and speaking of Mother Shipton. Her mother told her it was all nonsense, but this had not the least effect upon her, and when she went to bed at half-past ten she was still crying and wringing her hands, saying she knew the end of the world would come in the night.
At about half-past three on the following morning the mother was awakened by hearing her cry, and on going to her bedroom found the child in a fit.
A doctor was immediately sent for, but his services were of no avail, and the child died two hours later. Medical evidence was to the effect that death was due to convulsions and shock to the system, brought on by fright. A verdict was returned accordingly.
The Taunton Courier, November 30, 1881.