1843 The M’Naughten Rules for Insanity

Daniel M’Naughten attempted to assassinate the Prime Minister Robert Peel. He attempted to shoot both the Prime Minister and his Private Secretary, Edward Drummond. He was stopped before he could kill Robert Peel. He believed that he was being persecuted… Continue reading

1836 R v Pritchard

Fitness to Plead and Stand Trial. The defendant was deaf, without speech and was learning disabled, being unable to understand and participate in the legal process; the Judge ruled in this case that he could not and this formed the… Continue reading

1817 Early Textbook of Forensic Psychiatry

John Haslam publishes ‘Medical Jurisprudence as it relates to Insanity’, which discussed matters such as the boundary line between crime and sanity, the role of delusions and murder, and the nature of an unsound mind.

1814 Bethlem Hospital

Bethlem Hospital opens Criminal Lunatics Wing. Bethlem was founded in 1247 and is the oldest mental hospital in Europe. When it moved to St. George’s Fields in 1815 the government paid for a special criminal lunatics wing to house James… Continue reading

1808 County Asylum Act

County Asylum Act provided for a ‘modern asylum in every country of England and Wales’.

1800 James Hadfield

James Hadfield believed that he should die to save the world. Consequently, he attempted to assassinate King George III at the Drury Lane Theatre. His previously good character was recognised, as was the likely physical  precursor to his mental ill… Continue reading

Introduction Part 3

This charity is concerned with the academic aspects of forensic psychiatry which are endangered by a lack of government and university support. No specialty of medicine can flourish without conducting fundamental research and providing education to the next generation of… Continue reading

Introduction Part 2

There are several ways to define forensic psychiatry. One useful way has been developed by a European study group in forensic psychiatry, called the Ghent group. they called it “a specialty of medicine, based on a detailed knowledge of relevant… Continue reading