Debs what was the first murder where hebs says the head was decapitated with a knife
Pinchin perhaps? Although with the Rainham torso the upper portion of the trunk was missing so they couldn't deremine where the head was taken off. That means they wouldn't have been able to determine a knife or saw in that case.
Ooh, well spotted, I'd not noticed that before! Only a brief reference, but none-the-less interesting.
Another reference on the previous page, although nothing to do with Hebbert or JTR, is also interesting;
“There is one case quoted by Foster (Physiology), where an Italian boy was covered with gold-leaf to represent an angel, and died a few minutes after the whole body was enveloped, with the signs of asphyxia.”
This sounds a lot like the famous scene in Goldfinger, which Stephen Fry assured me was a myth. But it seems there's at least a grain of truth to it
(Excerpt From: Hamilton, Allan McLane, 1848-1919. “A system of legal medicine.” New York, E. B. Treat, 1894. iBooks. )
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Yes, it is interesting. I point it out quite a lot during discussions of the Mylett case because Hebbert was present at the first post mortem with Brownfield and Harris and although it is stated he officially agreed on the cause of death as homicidal asphyxia, this shows that Hebbert didn't appear to agree with the method employed as described by Brownfield and his assistant Harris.
They described a two handed action holding a ligature and crossing over at the back of the neck, while Hebbert is describing covering of the nose and mouth while pressure is applied to the front of the throat. Bond thought there had been pressure on the larynx also, caused by Mylett slumping forward while hopelessly drunk.
I remember the Goldfinger discussions and the square of flesh left unpainted! Gold leaf is a different material to paint though, perhaps they placed it over the boys nostrils and he also wasn't able to breathe through his mouth.