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One Incontrovertible, Unequivocal, Undeniable Fact Which Refutes the Diary

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  • #31
    Originally posted by Graham View Post
    Only my quirky sense of humour, Tom.

    As it happens, I really appreciated your initial post. Personally, I don't consider the Diary to be genuine, but at the same time I wouldn't be prepared to write it off with the alacrity certain other distinguished posters have. In the back of my mind lurks the possibility that it could well be an old fake, written for a specific purpose. However, there really are many, many faults within the text that seriously suggest a modern fake.

    And as I've just posted on another thread, without the Diary there is absolutely no evidence whatsoever to link James Maybrick with the Whitechapel Murders.

    Still, I for one am not quite prepared to write it off...not yet, at any rate.

    And it's strange that there's been nothing recently from our friends Down Under regarding the Diary....

    Cheers,

    Graham
    Well, I'm still here Graham .. and still remember Steven writing a diary ..
    a few nurses, and a blackboard episode, Victoria, Victoria etc ...
    As for Steve, I think he is just extremely busy finalising his book and
    investigations .. we will no doubt all hear about it, when the time is right.
    "Victoria Victoria, the queen of them all,
    of Sir Jack she knows nothing at all"

    Comment


    • #32
      Originally posted by Graham View Post
      goes to international rugby matches,
      Excuse me! What's wrong with international rugby matches? Is that some sort of elitist activity? I wish I could go to more of them.

      Mike
      huh?

      Comment


      • #33
        The Diary is a narrative--beginning, middle, end, plot, backstory and character developing-- that closely conforms to Victorian ideas of melodrama.

        It doesn't read like a Diary at all.

        Sure, there's no single point that jumps up and yell's "fake", but really, how many errors, contradictions and fabrications do you have to accumalate before the light dawns and you say "this isn't genuine". How many bricks make a pile? How many droplets make a puddle?

        If you claim that the Diary is true, then the burden of proof is on you to prove that the Maybrick wrote the Diary and was also the Ripper--you can't just say "you can't prove 'x" isn't absolutely disproven, therefore 'x' is evidence that the Diary is genuine/can be dismissed/has no bearing on the Diary's authenticity". That's just silly.

        Why should the Maybrick Diary be exempt from the vigorous application of Occam's Razor that's given to every other theory, suspect or piece of "evidence" in the case?

        If we say "it can't be dismissed until there's 100%, unmistakeable, undeniable, self-evident proof that it's a forgery" then the same standard must be applied to every theory ever floated about the case.

        Can you prove that Dr. Stanley didn't exist? Well then we have to consider that maybe he was the Ripper. No eyewitness evidence that proves that Dr. Cream wasn't in prison for the murders? Well then we must remain open to the idea that maybe he wasn't really in prison. Can you prove that anagrams are a bloody silly foundation on which to base a theory? Well then I guess Lewis Carroll really was the Ripper--or was it J.K. Stephen?

        Next thing you know we're up to our arses in Baphomet's.
        “Sans arme, sans violence et sans haine”

        Comment


        • #34
          Ive been on the boards for almost 10 years now, and the diary world still chases its tail.

          Personally I couldnt care less who wrote it, it doesnt bring anything to the table, doesnt prove the author was Jack, doesnt even support the known facts.

          Tiresome, irksome and entirely fruitless. Even Olmor has walked away.




          Author of Capturing Jack the Ripper.

          http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/aw/d/1445621622

          Comment


          • #35
            The objective of my original post was to establish if there actually was even just the one (if not the many) incontrovertible flaw (or flaws) about the diary which can nail it stone dead in the water. I’d be happy to move on from the diary (like Omlor, and Monty, and presumably many others), but – as the responses have shown – the diary (after 16 years of scrutiny) remains open to debate, and is in that pure sense still ‘flawless’.

            I am gripped by the diary because it represents real hard evidence – either of the killer or of a fraud. Few other candidates have much more than a bit of circumstantial evidence to support their case. Recently, I read ‘Uncle Jack’, and was appalled at the tenuous nature of the ‘evidence’ presented against Dr John Williams.

            The diary, on the other hand, provides us with means, motive, and opportunity. Further, it includes details which have never previously (to my knowledge) been part of the Ripper debate (the marks on Eddowes’ cheeks, the possibility that the red leather cigarette case was actually the killer’s not the victim’s). The diary has indeed added something to the body of our understanding of the case.

            The diary also contains references which are obscure to verify, and yet can be verified. I named the ones I could remember in my original post:

            1) The reference to Gladys being unwell ‘again’
            2) The knowledge that the 1889 Grand National could well have been the fastest James Maybrick had ever seen
            3) The reference to Maybrick bring away at Christmas 1888
            4) The knowledge of when his brother Thomas was and was not in America
            5) The constant references to Michael being in London when he could have been elsewhere
            6) The use of ‘Sir Jim’
            7) The reference to Maybrick as ‘May’

            These are parts of the puzzle which strongly support the diary’s authenticity.

            Although I believe the diary is more likely to be genuine, than a forgery, I do accept the weaknesses in the case. In terms of known facts about the case (as opposed to opinions which have passed into Ripper folklore as ‘facts’), I see them as:

            1) The handwriting is in a casual hand as opposed to a formal hand, and we only have examples of Maybrick’s formal hand - this is definitely not a fatal flaw
            2) The author uses a phrase (‘tin match box empty’) which is essentially the same as the police report’s (‘tin match box, empty’) – a coincidence, I agree, and an unfortunate one for the diary
            3) The author gets the location of Mary Kelly’s breasts wrong – a foolish mistake if written by a forger given the amount of research he or she had otherwise done with the supportive details (above), but one easily made by the actual murderer who was not relying on a police report but on their actual Technicolor recall of the bloody events
            4) The inclusion of (from memory) ‘Oh costly intercourse of death’ and the fact that it was both obscure and to be found in Barrett’s attic is a second coincidence which quite rightly should bother us

            Personally, the body of evidence against the diary needs to be far higher than just those four points. I am happy to be reminded what the other inaccuracies are.

            Could I politely suggest that we don’t cite stuff like ‘It doesn’t read like a diary’? If we have issues with the journal’s status as a diary we need to take it up with Shirley Harrison and her original publishers as it was they who gave it its name, not the author/forger.

            Similarly, it is not evidence against the diary to say that stylistically it reads like a novel. It reads exactly like an unsophisticated, averagely-schooled, tortured guy who’s furious with his missus and her new man, and knows he can’t do anything to them without grave consequences to himself. It reads like a guy who decides to take it out on prostitutes far away from where he lives. It reads like a guy who in the main just wants to record stuff about the murders so that he can relive them again and again. It ends melodramatically, but that’s really only the end. The guy’s heading towards his death bed, and I imagine the knowledge of the end approaching may very well make you somewhat more maudlin and sentimental than you may commonly be. It is theatrical at the end, but he is concluding something and he does it with a flourish he failed to achieve in the rest of the text. I’m prepared to give Maybrick a moment’s credit for the vague poetry he summoned up to end his ramblings. I believe that it was perfectly possible for him to find the right words at the right time as his time ran out.

            We haven’t even touched on the ‘FM’ on the wall, the letter from Florence (someone asked why Maybrick saying he was Jack the Ripper would scare Florie and Brierley – surely the question was ironic?), the Diego Laurenz letter, the geoprofile data identifying Middlesex Street as a strong likely site of the murderer’s base, etc., etc.. Each of these adds a little support in the same way each of the weaknesses removes some. The balance may tilt slightly one way or the other, but I don’t think it tilts in favour of a forgery in quite the way many on this casebook appear to believe.

            So, we are all agreed that the diary is intrinsically flawless. We are left with belief: belief either that the evidence is so great against the diary that it must be a forgery, or belief that the evidence is so great in its favour that it must be for real, or belief that frankly we’ll never know so why bother? But belief nevertheless!

            I am encouraged. I had assumed that after 16 years of the most intense scrutiny, the forgery would have been exposed by now …

            Comment


            • #36
              Originally posted by Tom Mitchell View Post
              So, we are all agreed that the diary is intrinsically flawless.
              What gave you that impresson, Tom? Even if we accept the gerrymandered classification of it as a "non-diary" as you seem to suggest, it's still an intrinsically flawed work, and an execrable piece of writing.
              Kind regards, Sam Flynn

              "Suche Nullen" (Nietzsche, Götzendämmerung, 1888)

              Comment


              • #37
                Hi Sam,

                I use the term 'flawless' in the context of having no one incontrovertible flaw which renders it a fake.



                PS I got the Florie letter thing wrong - the question was about why Maybrick saying he was JtR would scare the truth out of Florie, and I rememebered it as why it would simply scare her. Bang to rights.

                Cheers,

                Tom

                Comment


                • #38
                  Hi Tom,
                  Originally posted by Tom Mitchell View Post
                  I use the term 'flawless' in the context of having no one incontrovertible flaw which renders it a fake.
                  The non-Maybrick handwriting and the reference to the "Poste House" are pretty incontrovertible, are they not?
                  Kind regards, Sam Flynn

                  "Suche Nullen" (Nietzsche, Götzendämmerung, 1888)

                  Comment


                  • #39
                    And I find the writing style perfectly fine - positively entertaining (I love his attempts at rhyme!). It's a non-issue to keep 'nailing' the diary on its style.

                    But then, I love those Smiley things, so what does that say about me (that Graham has not already told you)?

                    Comment


                    • #40
                      No, Sam, they are not.

                      Comment


                      • #41
                        Originally posted by Tom Mitchell View Post
                        And I find the writing style perfectly fine
                        You must get out and read more. It's complete dung.
                        It's a non-issue to keep 'nailing' the diary on its style.
                        Is it? If manuscripts cannot be assessed for authenticity on stylistic grounds, then anything's up for grabs.
                        Kind regards, Sam Flynn

                        "Suche Nullen" (Nietzsche, Götzendämmerung, 1888)

                        Comment


                        • #42
                          Originally posted by Sam Flynn View Post
                          Hi Tom,The non-Maybrick handwriting and the reference to the "Poste House" are pretty incontrovertible, are they not?
                          Your friend Nietzsche also said ('Beyond Good and Evil'), "Fanatics are picturesque. Mankind would rather see gestures than listen to reason". I feel a certain resonance in all of this.

                          PS Or was it "...listen to reasons"?

                          Comment


                          • #43
                            Actually, you're right, I do need to get out more.

                            And on that note, I'm finally off out into the Midlothian rain to walk the dogs ...

                            PS But I'll have my Blackberry with me!

                            Comment


                            • #44
                              Originally posted by Tom Mitchell View Post
                              No, Sam, they are not.
                              Oh yes they are.

                              Yours truly,

                              Widow Twankey.

                              Ha ha.
                              Kind regards, Sam Flynn

                              "Suche Nullen" (Nietzsche, Götzendämmerung, 1888)

                              Comment


                              • #45
                                Originally posted by Tom Mitchell View Post
                                Your friend Nietzsche also said ('Beyond Good and Evil'), "Fanatics are picturesque. Mankind would rather see gestures than listen to reason". I feel a certain resonance in all of this.
                                You are living - not feeling - that resonance, I fear.
                                Kind regards, Sam Flynn

                                "Suche Nullen" (Nietzsche, Götzendämmerung, 1888)

                                Comment

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