Ambroise Pare is called the "Father of Surgery". He recounts in in Apologie and Treatise an experiment he did to prove to the King that bezoar was not an antidote to all poison. The poison is "sublimate" or sublimate of mercury. It sticks in my mind as a pretty graphic account of rapid poisoning.
...it was an easy matter to make trial hereof on such as were
condemned to be hanged. The motion pleased the King; there was a
Cooke brought by the Jailor who was to have been hanged within a
while after for stealing two silver dishes out of his masters house.
Yet the King desired first to know of him, whether he would take the
poison on this condition, that if the Antidote which was predicated
to have singular power against all manner of poisons, which should be
presently given him after the poison, should free him from death,
that then he should have his life saved. The Cooke answered
chearfuUy, that he was "willing to undergo the hazzard, yea, and
greater matters. not only for to save his life, but to shun the
infamy of the death he was like to be adjudged to.
Therefore he then
had poyson given him by the Apothecarie that then waited, and
presently after the poyson, some of the Bezahar brought from Spain,
which being taken down, within a while after he began to vomit, and
to void much by stoole with grievous torments, and to cry out that
his inward parts were burnt with fire. Wherefore, being thirsty, and
desiring water, they gave it him; an houre after, with the good leave
of the Jaylor, I was admitted to him; I find him on the ground going
like a beast upon hands and feet, with his tongue thrust forth of his
mouth, his eyes fierie, vomiting, with store of cold sweats, and
lastly, the bloud flowing forth by his eares, nose, mouth, fundament
and yard. I gave him eight ounces of oile to drinke, but it did him
no good, for it came too late. Wherefore at length he died with great
torment and exclamation, the seventh houre from the time that he
tooke the poison being scarcely passed. I opened his body in the
presence of the Jailor and foure odiers, and I found the botome of
his stomacke blacke and dry, as if it had beene burnt with a
Cautery; whereby I understood he had sublimate given him; whose force
the Spanish Bezahar could not represse, wherefore the King commanded
to burn it.