Despite their instant availability to rich and poor alike, mushrooms have long been considered the food of kings.
Consider the historical prominence the mushroom has enjoyed on the dinner table of the rich and powerful. In ancient Egypt, mushrooms were considered such a delicacy that only pharaohs were allowed to eat them.
And remember ancient Roman emperor Claudius, who was the worthy and crippled ruler of Rome? He was quite fond of fungus, so much so that it finally did him in.
His fourth wife, and the mother of Nero, Agrippina, was so intent upon placing her son on the throne that she succeeded in murdering Claudius by feeding him a potently poisonous variety, masquerading the lethal mushroom as his old stand-by.
After twelve hours of speechless gagging, Claudius finally kicked the bucket, and Nero was crowned.