Alice Pengelley visits Poirot in London, telling him she thinks she is being poisoned by her husband. When Poirot arrives in Cornwall the next day to investigate Mrs. Pengelley's charges, he is too late, and finds her dead.



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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Chloe Salaman ...
Freda Stanton
Jacob Radnor
Jerome Willis ...
Edward Pengelley
Mrs Pengelley
Tilly Vosburgh ...
Jessie Dawlish
Dr Adams
Laura Girling ...
Edwina Marks
Hugh Munro ...
Graham Callan ...
Edwina Day ...


Poirot and Captain Hastings travel to Cornwall at the request of Mrs. Pengelly but arrive to find that the woman is dead. She had told Poirot the previous day that she feared her dentist husband, Edward Pengelly, had been having an affair with his pretty receptionist and that further, he was trying to poison her. Apart from her husband, she has a niece and her fiancé, but no other relatives in the village. When Inspector Japp arrests the husband for murder, the Belgian detective is convinced that the wrong person is in the dock. Written by garykmcd

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Plot Keywords:

murder mystery | See All (1) »


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Release Date:

28 January 1990 (UK)  »

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Technical Specs


(36 episodes)


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Did You Know?


The village used for this episode is not Cornish at all. It is Dunster, which is in Somerset. In the final few scenes, Inspector Japp is stood under the eaves of the Dunster Yarn Market, and Dunster Castle is clearly visible in the background. See more »


The train going to and from Polgarwith station is formed of British Rail Mark 1 carriages, which were first introduced in 1951, but the story is set in the 1930s. See more »


[first lines]
Hercule Poirot: Are you feeling better, Hastings?
Captain Hastings: Yes. Yes, I am, as a matter of fact. Takes the pressure off the pancreas, you see.
Hercule Poirot: Hein, the pancreas is nothing. Of the digestive organs, the liver is the key. Look after the liver and life will take care of itself.
Miss Lemon: Your tisane, Monsieur Poirot
Hercule Poirot: Thank you, Miss Lemon. This is what you need, Hastings.
Captain Hastings: No fear; I've tasted it.
See more »

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User Reviews

very good episode
9 February 2014 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Hercule Poirot tries to unravel "The Cornish Mystery" in this 1990 episode.

Mrs. Pengelly visits Poirot at his office and confesses that she thinks her husband is trying to kill her. She's very sick to her stomach when he's at home, but when he's out of town, she feels fine. Her doctor insists she has gastritis. There's weed killer missing. Add to this, her husband is a dentist with a new va-va-va voom blond assistant.

Her niece was living with them, but recently moved out. She has no other relatives in town, just a close friend, Jacob Radnor. Poirot and Hastings go to her home in Cornwall the next day, but they're too late. She's already dead.

The husband, Edward, is the obvious suspect, and Hastings' eyes bug out when he sees his assistant! Jacob Radnor, who has just become engaged to Mrs. Pengelly's niece, thinks it would be better if the entire thing were left alone. Poirot says that six months from then, he and Hastings would be back, because there's no way to cover it up, due to "the vox populi." Sure enough, within six months, the husband is arrested. Poirot returns -- because he's sure there's more to the case than Inspector Japp has uncovered.

Really good mystery, with Poirot and Hastings in fine form, as well as Miss Lemon. Poirot is quite funny with Japp, especially at the end.

Very enjoyable and entertaining.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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