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One Incontrovertible, Unequivocal, Undeniable Fact Which Refutes the Diary

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  • Originally posted by Iconoclast View Post
    It's really interesting that the 'sudden', unstoppable, exponential use of 'one-off instance' in Ngrams after 1982 or so rather pales into context when you put it into context with 'one-off' alone. Obviously, 'one-off' does not make it back to the start of the 20th century (despite being used in technical journals) which is a bit weird and makes Ngrams look rather faulty but we'll overlook that problem for the sake of this argument.

    Now, I'd be the first to agree with Voldemort's Shadow that James Maybrick's use of 'one off instance' does smack on the surface as someone using a type of expression which does not seem to have been commonplace in 1888 (that is, an event which is singular and individual). Where I would have to differ from him (and in so many other ways, obviously!) is that this is clearly not a categorical proof of a hoax. That would take a bit more than an expression we think was never previously used, or a godmother lazily or ignorantly referred to as an 'aunt'.

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    Ike,

    Is ngrams telling us that one - off instance has never been used by anyone since the dawn of time?

    Comment


    • one-off instance

      First appears since 1976 !!!!



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      The Baron

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      • spreads mayhem

        Since 1982 !!!



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        • bumbling buffoon


          Since 1953 !!!



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          The Baron

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          • Freshly-picked carrots!
            Iconoclast

            Comment


            • Originally posted by MrBarnett View Post

              Ike,

              Is ngrams telling us that one - off instance has never been used by anyone since the dawn of time?
              Yes, MrB, I think we have to accept that Ngrams checked every single printed and written text as well as all examples of speech (recorded or not) right back to the Norman conquest and could not find an example of 'one-off instance' until 1982.

              This confirms what we all probably just believed, William the Conqueror was not only a bastard but a bastard who never ate freshly-picked carrots ...

              Ike
              Iconoclast

              Comment


              • Originally posted by The Baron View Post
                "Her nose annoyed me so I cut it off"


                This is one example of the lazy writing we find all over the scrapbook, the hoaxer didn't add any depth to the historic fact, no details, no meanings, nothing there, it is empty, shallow and fruitless.


                Imagine a scholar of the case or an historian who spent some +30 years studying the case reading this scrapbook and this sentence for the first time, he would say to himself:


                - Ahaaa now I know why the Ripper cut Eddowes nose, because it annoyed him!


                I wouldn't ask for more than this to deem this a hoax, and a cheap one for that.




                The Baron
                Hi Baron,

                We all have the right to hold such subjective opinions about the 'quality' of the writing, in what is purported to be the confessional diary of a Victorian murderer, but we don't have the right to declare that our subjective opinion trumps everyone else's. It would be rather disturbing for anyone to claim they knew how real killers think and how they would express those thoughts in writing, and that therefore the creator of the Maybrick diary got it all wrong.

                Personally, I have always found the line you quoted quite chilling and inspired, because it puts me in mind of a line from the genuine diary of Frederick Baker, who murdered, mutilated and dismembered a child of seven, Fanny Adams, in August 1867:

                'Baker is responsible for one of the most famous phrases in the English language, 'sweet Fanny Adams.'
                On Saturday 24th August 1867 seven-year-old Fanny and her young sister, Lizzie, left their Alton, Hampshire, home to play with their friend Minnie Warner. They met Minnie and the three children walked the half mile to Flood Meadow, near the River Wey.
                When they arrived they were met by Baker, a local solicitor. He offered them halfpennies if they would go with him to The Hollow, a quiet country road. They agreed and went along with the young man quite willingly.
                When he tried to entice young Fanny into a hop grove the children began to express their doubts. Baker gave Lizzie and Minnie another halfpenny each and told them to go home. He picked up young Fanny and carried her into the hop field.
                When the child failed to return home a search party set out and soon found her. She had been battered to death. Her head, with its eyes gouged out, had been stuck on a pole and other portions of the child were found nearby.
                It did not take the authorities long to arrest Baker. When they examined his diary for the fateful day they found the entry, 'Saturday August 24th. Killed a young girl. It was fine and hot.' The jury took no time to find Baker guilty and he was duly hanged...'

                https://murderpedia.org/male.B/b/baker-frederick.htm

                It's the awful matter-of-factness of the words in both diaries that struck me, and made me wonder if our hoaxer was inspired by the details of that infamous murder to write, simply: 'Her nose annoyed me so I cut it off.' No further explanation necessary.

                Baker severed the head of Fanny Adams, cut off her right ear and gouged out her eyes, which might have inspired our diarist despite the word in the facsimile appearing to be 'gorge'.

                Love,

                Caz
                X
                Last edited by caz; 10-11-2021, 03:30 PM.
                "Comedy is simply a funny way of being serious." Peter Ustinov


                Comment


                • Originally posted by rjpalmer View Post
                  The Maybrick Hoax was ruled a fraud in a court of law nearly 3 decades ago, when the Sunday Times was released from its non-disclosure agreement on the principle that the public was about to be scammed. Reputable historians of the case have since ignored it.

                  I can’t speak for Lord Orsam, but the only reason I keep debating is because I feel fraud should be resisted, and people who run interference for frauds deserve pushback.

                  Maybe a better strategy is to merely deprive the debate of oxygen.
                  While I'm here, I'd like to remind RJ again that he has yet to support the above claim, in his post from July 11 this year.

                  It was quite an accusation, that 'people' have been running 'interference for frauds', when nobody has been able to identify who actually wrote the diary, or if that individual ever made a penny from its publication, or had any intention to do so.

                  RJ's suggested alternative strategy, to deprive the debate of oxygen, is not working very well, but he must be glad of all the distractions if he can't quote a source for his 'court of law' claim.

                  My own information is as follows:

                  According to Robert Smith, it was correctly reported in Ripper Diary: The Inside Story, that the sole purpose of The Sunday Times versus Smith Gryphon case was to establish when the newspaper could be legally allowed to publish its investigation. It did not seek to make a ruling on whether or not the diary was a fraud.

                  Robert succeeded in delaying The Sunday Times's publication of their investigation by two or three months, until a few days prior to the book's publication. By then, it created so much publicity that the book became an instant top 10 bestseller.

                  There was no legal pressure on Robert whatsoever to put the label on the front cover. On the contrary, he was using the publicity created by The Sunday Times to sell more books.

                  Sounds like a bit of an own goal on the part of The Sunday Times, if the object was to protect the book buying public from being 'scammed'. The book buying public evidently chose to decide for themselves what all the fuss was about.
                  Last edited by caz; 10-11-2021, 04:26 PM.
                  "Comedy is simply a funny way of being serious." Peter Ustinov


                  Comment


                  • Originally posted by caz View Post

                    While I'm here, I'd like to remind RJ again that he has yet to support the above claim, in his post from July 11 this year.
                    I suspect you'll be waiting a while, Caz. I think this is not the only question that was posed of RJ around the time yours was and I think he has evaded responding to any of them. It was so long ago, I can't even remember now what I asked him to clarify!

                    I think what happens is that the likes of RJ think they can just write End of Times stuff like The Maybrick Hoax was ruled a fraud in a court of law nearly 3 decades ago which is great for their argument, never thinking they will ever actually have to answer for those claims.

                    Hey, Caz, the Maybrick scrapbook was ruled authentic in a court of law quite a few years back. Convinced?

                    I didn't think so ...

                    Ike
                    Iconoclast

                    Comment


                    • Hi Ike. It’s not going to work, old boy. You and Caz have been practically begging me to discuss the diary with you, but after your ridiculous foray into statistical analysis last summer, and Caz’s gullible acceptance of it, I lost all interest. Draw whatever conclusions you want. I don’t care.

                      Comment


                      • Originally posted by rjpalmer View Post
                        Hi Ike. It’s not going to work, old boy. You and Caz have been practically begging me to discuss the diary with you, but after your ridiculous foray into statistical analysis last summer, and Caz’s gullible acceptance of it, I lost all interest. Draw whatever conclusions you want. I don’t care.
                        Oh, that was the reason, was it?

                        I wondered where you'd been these last - erm - few days ...
                        Iconoclast

                        Comment


                        • Hi Caz.

                          I don’t wish to leave the impression that you somehow nagged me into responding. Truly—I no longer care. But to put a nice end to this conversation, here’s what I wrote back in August in response to your question, though I never bothered to post it.

                          “Hi Caz. What I assume you are going to try and argue –despite your frequent acknowledgments that the diary IS a fraud—"blimey, the handwriting doesn’t even match” --is that because the civil case never proceeded to its conclusion the diary was not ruled a fraud in a court of law.

                          Did I guess correctly?

                          But a pre-trial hearing is still a court of law, and this was a civil case, not a criminal one, and civil cases are very often resolved before a trial’s start—let alone until its conclusion--as the lawyers for each side fight it out behind closed doors, file pretrial motions, negotiate, etc., etc. Presented with overwhelming evidence and an impending loss, one side will usually cave, admit defeat, and the matter is settled.

                          And that’s what happened in this case.

                          Smith tried to sell the Maybrick Hoax to The Sunday Times for serialization. This was supposedly the criminal discovery of the ages. But the Times had no appetite for the diary once it read it, was thoroughly unimpressed, and decline to publish.

                          Smith, meanwhile, went off to seek greener, or at least more credulous, pastures.

                          Yet, as you know, The Sunday Times eventually learned that the Diary was about to be published elsewhere, and, as their own independent investigation had determined the diary was a fraud, decided to publish an exposť. Alas, they had signed a non-disclosure agreement with Smith, so they couldn’t.

                          [Note: you write that the subsequent case wasn’t about proving the diary a fraud, but I disagree with you. The Times was arguing that they should be released from their non-disclosure agreement, and the reason they gave was that they had been deceived. Smith had misled them about the diary’s authenticity, ie. it was a hoax, and this was the bases of their legal case.

                          As you further note, Smith’s strategy seemed to have been dragging his feet. The age-old legal strategy of stalling. Perhaps he was hoping The Times would give up and go away; perhaps he was hoping he could drag out the matter until the book was safely on shelves in bookstores. I’ll leave it for you to decide which].

                          “As a new publishing date approached, The Times petitioned Justice Lindsey for a speedy trial. Their reason? They had uncovered clear evidence that the diary was a fake, including a sample of Maybrick’s genuine handwriting; I seem to recall that they had also obtained a copy of Baxendale’s damaging ink solubility results, but I’d have to verify this in my notes. Either way, I think we can assume that Smith was apprised of this evidence in the ‘discovery’ phase.

                          It was at this point that Justice Lindsey, having heard the arguments by the solicitors for The Sunday Times, refused further delays and called for the case to proceed quickly, ruling that there is “a real possibility that for a period in October, if nothing is done, the public or some of its members, may be deceived.

                          I have always assumed that the ‘period in October’ referred to the diary being in bookstores that autumn.

                          “the public may be deceived.”

                          In other words, deception. Fraud. It’s clear that Lindsey thought that there was sufficient evidence of fraud that the trial should proceed, and he ruled accordingly.
                          You will argue, I assume, that “may be deceived” is not the same as “definitely deceived,” and this is not evidence that the diary was a fake. Thus, Lindsey’s ruling does not, in itself, prove the diary is a fraud.

                          To some degree I agree with you, but that’s not what I was referring to when I said the diary was shown to be a hoax in court.

                          I was referring to the subsequent actions of the defendant, Robert Smith.

                          He threw in the towel.

                          For it was at this point, and despite his great faith in the authenticity of the diary (note: this is sarcasm), Smith knew his goose was cooked, and with it, the diary’s golden eggs. The Sunday Times had found the real handwriting of James Maybrick, so Smith, acknowledging his inevitable defeat, allowed the Sunday Times out of their non-disclosure agreement, even agreeing to pay legal fees. (According to one source this was £6,500, but perhaps you have another figure?)

                          That is a clear admission that Smith knew he was going to lose the case.

                          It’s akin to pleading “no contest” in a criminal case. One declines to offer a defense, acknowledging defeat is inevitable, and acquiesces to the judgment of the court. It’s a way of saving face.

                          Hypothetic question. If Smith had such great faith in the diary’s authenticity, as he now claims, why on earth would he have avoided the chance to prove it before the whole world in a court of law?

                          Instead, he waved the white flag of defeat. And that’s why I say that the diary was shown to be a fake in court thirty years ago…not so much by the judgement of Justice Lindsay, though that’s part of it…but mainly by the actions of diary’s owner, Robert Smith. His actions then speak louder than the subsequent thirty years of apologetics by those who believe in the Maybrick Hoax.

                          Of course, the great benefit of acknowledging the hopelessness of one’s case in court and quietly paying off the plaintiff’s fees is that, thirty years later, people in internet forums can argue that the trial never concluded and no fraud was proved. That’s the whole point of it. You will think this is unfair, I imagine, but the way I look at it, I’m less willing than you are to let Smith simply wriggle off the hook—he knew in who’s favor the judge would rule, or else he wouldn’t have so utterly caved-in.

                          Best wishes.”
                          -----------
                          As for your other questions about the diary’s handwriting, etc.---we have done this to death. My answers are in the archives. One must pull the plug sometime, now seems as good a time as any.

                          I did see in an old copy of the “Ripperologist” some gentleman complaining that one couldn’t discuss the diary on any internet forum without be drowned out by skeptics, so I thought you and Ike and other diary friendly folk might enjoy having the floor to yourselves.

                          The world is at your feet.

                          Can I go now?

                          RP

                          Comment


                          • Originally posted by rjpalmer View Post
                            Hi Ike. It’s not going to work, old boy. You and Caz have been practically begging me to discuss the diary with you, but after your ridiculous foray into statistical analysis last summer, and Caz’s gullible acceptance of it, I lost all interest. Draw whatever conclusions you want. I don’t care.
                            If I had 'lost all interest' I certainly wouldn't still be here, arguing about the very first time anyone with a reasonable grasp of English might have thought to describe a buffoon as 'bumbling'. But each to their own.

                            None of us knows the answer, and yet here you are, still appearing to push the line that nobody could possibly have put those two words together for 'Sir Jim' - before Bongo Barrett or his wife thought to do so circa 1990.

                            Or have I got that wrong, and are you finally having second thoughts about the truthfulness of Barrett's affidavit of January 5 1995?


                            "Comedy is simply a funny way of being serious." Peter Ustinov


                            Comment


                            • Originally posted by caz View Post

                              If I had 'lost all interest' I certainly wouldn't still be here, arguing about the very first time anyone with a reasonable grasp of English might have thought to describe a buffoon as 'bumbling'. But each to their own.

                              None of us knows the answer, and yet here you are, still appearing to push the line that nobody could possibly have put those two words together for 'Sir Jim' - before Bongo Barrett or his wife thought to do so circa 1990.
                              That's obviously NOT what I am suggesting.

                              I am suggesting that MANY people put those "two words together" in the 1980s and early 1990s, because it was a recognizable figure-of-speech, starting at mid-Century.

                              By contrast, neither you, nor Gary, can show it was a recognizable figure of speech in the Victorian age, and the OED even states the adjective is obsolete.

                              All you have offered is unconvincing rhetorical arguments--it could have been floating around for decades without someone recording it--hope springs eternal--but you haven't offered any actual evidence. And I think most people here will have notice that distinction.

                              Ciao.

                              Comment


                              • Originally posted by rjpalmer View Post

                                That's obviously NOT what I am suggesting.

                                I am suggesting that MANY people put those "two words together" in the 1980s and early 1990s, because it was a recognizable figure-of-speech, starting at mid-Century.

                                By contrast, neither you, nor Gary, can show it was a recognizable figure of speech in the Victorian age, and the OED even states the adjective is obsolete.

                                All you have offered is unconvincing rhetorical arguments--it could have been floating around for decades without someone recording it--hope springs eternal--but you haven't offered any actual evidence. And I think most people here will have notice that distinction.

                                Ciao.
                                If you take Google Ngrams overly-literally - perhaps because it superficially appears to support your argument - you are bound to make serious errors regarding the significance of what it produces. It is obviously producing 'more' usage of common terms in recent history as more recent works are available to it to search. The relative commonness of a term post-1945 is unlikely to be captured in the same way from 1800-1945 simply due to the obviously disproportionate availability of texts to OCR so a term that was common in spoken and hand-written form in 1888 may not be on the record until the availability of relevant texts increased and thereby appear to be impossible to have been used in a diary in 1888-89. It's just too flawed a system to invest with the status of unequivocal 'truth'.

                                Generally speaking, the sort of terms which have been challenged in the 1888 diary are terms which even today barely appear in print. Yes, there are sufficient texts available to cause them to look more modern than the LVP, but - no - they are not common, and this is shown when juxtaposed against the frequency of more obviously common terms such as 'diary', 'mother', or 'the'. Taking all juxtaposition out of the equation, and you can make any molehill appear to be a mountain!

                                PS You really ought to say 'Ciao for now' as you never, ever mean it ...
                                Iconoclast

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