In the Sixteenth and Seventeenth Century the ‘cruentation’ phenomenon (or bleeding of the corpse in the presence of the murderer) has been considered by many physicians and criminal lawyers as one of the "indicia de homicidio" and circumstantial evidence "sufficiens ad torturam". The conviction of truth is, in fact, the root of the widespread belief that the blood of the victim is able to ‘chase’ and expose the murderer. This conviction originated considerable scientific debate (especially in the field of forensic medicine) to which Paolo Zacchia valuably contributes in his "Quaestiones medico-legales".
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