Leonarda Cianciulli had an extremely rough life as a child. By the age of 13 she had attempted suicide twice although was never successful.
Before Leonarda was married her mother cursed her and her wedding leading a life filled with superstitions and Romani fortune tellers. She soon started her own fortune telling business along side with her soap making.
Leonarda Cianciulli poisoned her victims before bringing down the axe that she used to cut the bodies into several pieces. She would then use the blood of her victims for a ‘potion’ meant to protect her son from dying in the war.
From the journal of Leonarda Cianciulli“I threw the pieces into a pot, added seven kilos of caustic soda, which I had bought to make soap, and stirred the mixture until the pieces dissolved in a thick, dark mush that I poured into several buckets and emptied in a nearby septic tank. As for the blood in the basin, I waited until it had coagulated, dried it in the oven, ground it and mixed it with flour, sugar, chocolate, milk, and eggs, as well as a bit of margarine, kneading all the ingredients together. I made lots of crunchy tea cakes and served them to the ladies who came to visit, though Giuseppe and I also ate them.”
Leonarda Cianciulli’s victims were all customers of her soap and of her fortune telling business. The victims would come to the soap shop with a packed bag ready to depart with a made-up story and after transferring their wealth to Leonarda they would succumb to her vicious killings.