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Go Back   Casebook Forums > Ripper Discussions > Suspects > Maybrick, James

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  #1111  
Old 02-20-2018, 10:45 AM
David Orsam David Orsam is offline
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I see that latest bizarre theory put forward to explain Mike's acquisition of a Victorian diary in March 1992 is that he simply wanted "to find out how easy it would have been for some practical joker to get hold of an unused or partly used diary from the 1880s."

Not surprisingly, it's as nonsensical as all the other theories which have come from this quarter.

We are supposed to believe that Mike decided to carry out his own investigation into the availability of Victorian diaries after having spoken gushingly to Doreen about the diary of Jack the Ripper on 9th or 10th March 1992.

Well let's think about that on the basis that the diary came into his possession from an electrician - or he had simply seen it - on 9th March 1992.

If Mike was unsure that the diary was a genuine diary then he obviously didn't know that it was a diary from 1888/9. No tests to date the paper or the diary had been carried out at this stage. The bound volume with which he had been presented did not bear any printed date or any other indication of its age apart from what had been written in it (by the suspected prankster). Without knowing if this "diary" was really from the Victorian period, what would have been the point of an investigation into the availability of Victorian diaries?

And if it was a fake "diary", recently forged, the volume in which it was written could have been one from 1895 or the early twentieth century or any other time. So an investigation into the availability of diaries from 1880-1890 was absolutely pointless.

Assuming that Mike hadn't worked out that the "diary" was a photo album or scrapbook, surely his investigation would have been into the availability of (undated but old looking) diaries bound in black cloth and leather of an approximate size of 11 by 8.5 inches, with a minimum of 63 blank pages, because THAT is would have been what he had been shown and THAT is the only investigation that would have made any sense.

Mind you, the entire theory is nonsensical for another reason because even Mike couldn't have thought that the ONLY way to obtain a Victorian diary was through a specialist second hand bookdealer.

But hey, perhaps we will soon be told that Mike's investigation didn't stop at finding out what was available from specialist second hand bookdealers. Perhaps he wanted to find out if Victorian diaries could be found at auction houses so popped over to Outhwaite and Litherland one Tuesday in March 1992 to see what they had to offer....
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  #1112  
Old 02-20-2018, 11:30 AM
John G John G is offline
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Hello David,

Has it been established when the phrase "one off" first entered common parlance? I seem to recall that it was around the 1970s.
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  #1113  
Old 02-20-2018, 11:37 AM
David Orsam David Orsam is offline
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Hello David,

Has it been established when the phrase "one off" first entered common parlance? I seem to recall that it was around the 1970s.
It was earlier than that John. In fact, it was sufficiently commonly used during the 1960s for there to have been a television programme on Thames TV in September 1969 called "One Off", which was about unique individuals.
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  #1114  
Old 02-20-2018, 11:42 AM
Sam Flynn Sam Flynn is offline
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Hello John
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Originally Posted by John G View Post
Has it been established when the phrase "one off" first entered common parlance? I seem to recall that it was around the 1970s.
David may know of some earlier ones but, when I looked into it a few years back, I couldn't find too many examples prior to that of the abstract construction "one-off instance/incident/[insert synonym here]" occurring in print. I found a similar pattern for "spreads mayhem" and "top myself", which are two other phrases I find incongruous. All three phrases started to take off in print during the 1980s, and became increasingly popular throughout the 1990s.
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Last edited by Sam Flynn : 02-20-2018 at 11:45 AM.
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  #1115  
Old 02-20-2018, 12:01 PM
John G John G is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sam Flynn View Post
Hello John
David may know of some earlier ones but, when I looked into it a few years back, I couldn't find too many examples prior to that of the abstract construction "one-off instance/incident/[insert synonym here]" occurring in print. I found a similar pattern for "spreads mayhem" and "top myself", which are two other phrases I find incongruous. All three phrases started to take off in print during the 1980s, and became increasingly popular throughout the 1990s.
Thanks Sam. Personally I think the "one-off" problem is fatal to the argument that the diary is genuine . Thus, I believe the earliest example of "one off" being used dates to 1903, a technical term in the engineering industry; and even if an earlier example could be found, why would Maybrick use such an esoteric term, that only engineer's would presumably have heard of, albeit in a very different context, especially as the author expesses a wish that the diary should be widely read? Maybe he was planning separate versions for architects, lawyers, butchers...with terms specific to their professions!

Moreover, it appears that the phrase didn't enter common usage until decades later. Therefore, the chances of Maybrick being the one who originated the phrase, which is then ignored for decades before someone else decides to use it, must be millions, if not billions, to one against.
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  #1116  
Old 02-20-2018, 01:45 PM
Abby Normal Abby Normal is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John G View Post
Thanks Sam. Personally I think the "one-off" problem is fatal to the argument that the diary is genuine . Thus, I believe the earliest example of "one off" being used dates to 1903, a technical term in the engineering industry; and even if an earlier example could be found, why would Maybrick use such an esoteric term, that only engineer's would presumably have heard of, albeit in a very different context, especially as the author expesses a wish that the diary should be widely read? Maybe he was planning separate versions for architects, lawyers, butchers...with terms specific to their professions!

Moreover, it appears that the phrase didn't enter common usage until decades later. Therefore, the chances of Maybrick being the one who originated the phrase, which is then ignored for decades before someone else decides to use it, must be millions, if not billions, to one against.
or a contemporary forger
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  #1117  
Old 02-20-2018, 02:08 PM
John G John G is offline
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Originally Posted by Abby Normal View Post
or a contemporary forger
Hi Abby,

Yes, I think it was most likely a modern hoax. However, although I think Mike was probably part of a wider conspiracy, I personally doubt he did the forging himself, nor much, or anything, in the way of research. Based upon his many inconsistent ramblings, and the opinions of those who had the opportunity to interview him, he simply comes across as too erratic, too unreliable, to be trusted with any substantive, i.e. creative, task. Not to mention his questionable literacy skills, and the possibility that he may have been somewhat lacking in sobriety!

Nonetheless, I think he'd make an excellent frontman, the ideal person to "sell" the diary as the genuine article.

However, would Mike, who had such a keen sense of his own inadequacy that he once fantasized about being a secret agent, be content with playing such a relatively minor role, especially when you consider the huge amount of publicity and interest the diary received?

Frankly, I seriously doubt it, which would explain why he ultimately couldn't resist claiming all of the credit for himself.

Last edited by John G : 02-20-2018 at 02:10 PM.
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  #1118  
Old 02-20-2018, 02:18 PM
Abby Normal Abby Normal is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John G View Post
Hi Abby,

Yes, I think it was most likely a modern hoax. However, although I think Mike was probably part of a wider conspiracy, I personally doubt he did the forging himself, nor much, or anything, in the way of research. Based upon his many inconsistent ramblings, and the opinions of those who had the opportunity to interview him, he simply comes across as too erratic, too unreliable, to be trusted with any substantive, i.e. creative, task. Not to mention his questionable literacy skills, and the possibility that he may have been somewhat lacking in sobriety!

Nonetheless, I think he'd make an excellent frontman, the ideal person to "sell" the diary as the genuine article.

However, would Mike, who had such a keen sense of his own inadequacy that he once fantasized about being a secret agent, be content with playing such a relatively minor role, especially when you consider the huge amount of publicity and interest the diary received?

Frankly, I seriously doubt it, which would explain why he ultimately couldn't resist claiming all of the credit for himself.
cmon John
the guy was a published author for crying out loud.

Like writers, artists and creative people havnt been known for having issues-mental, substance abuse etc?!? Its practically a prerequisite.
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Last edited by Abby Normal : 02-20-2018 at 02:20 PM.
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  #1119  
Old 02-20-2018, 02:22 PM
John G John G is offline
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cmon John
the guy was a published author for crying out loud.

Like authors, artists and creative people havnt been known for having issues-mental, substance abuse etc?!? Its practically a prerequisite.
Actually Abby, as far as I'm aware he was responsible for a handful of short magazine articles, which Anne, who clearly had literacy skills, as she once worked as a secretary whilst Mike took on the role of "househusband" during a lengthy period of unemployment, had to "tidy up."
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  #1120  
Old 02-20-2018, 02:24 PM
David Orsam David Orsam is offline
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However, although I think Mike was probably part of a wider conspiracy, I personally doubt he did the forging himself, nor much, or anything, in the way of research.
John, you've referred on more than one occasion to Mike's inability to carry out research but have you actually read his 17 page research note on Maybrick and the Ripper murders? It's a perfectly competent note and proves that he was capable of competent historical research.
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