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The Diary—Old Hoax or New?

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  • #46
    Originally posted by Spider View Post
    Look at the seemingly meaningless passages and throwaway comments (pointless inclusions for a hoaxer).
    Not if we're dealing with an inexpert hoaxer.
    Kind regards, Sam Flynn

    "Suche Nullen" (Nietzsche, Götzendämmerung, 1888)

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    • #47
      Originally posted by Sam Flynn View Post
      Not if we're dealing with an inexpert hoaxer.
      Inexpert hoaxer who lucks out time and time again. As Spider wisely says, people who comment need to read it (obviously you have, Sam, albeit just online, we know that - most have not). The complexity of the scrapbook is belied by its surface 'shoddiness'. The range of content which works for Maybrick is truly astonishing - this level of 'unreasonable serendipity' is way beyond what a statistician would allow for whilst still arguing for a hoax.
      Iconoclast
      Soldier of Fortune, Man of Peace, Destroyer of Images, Nice Guy, Genius

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      • #48
        Originally posted by Sam Flynn View Post
        Not if we're dealing with an inexpert hoaxer.
        Exactly, but if we're not dealing with an 'inexpert hoaxer' (which imo we're not) then they mean something to the writer, and if you can bring yourself to seriously consider the possibility that the 'Diary' is authentic you may just get it.
        ‘There is nothing more deceptive than an obvious fact’ Sherlock Holmes

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        • #49
          Originally posted by Harry D View Post
          I find the reference to the murder in Manchester quite curious. It's not something a hoaxer would've had to include, and the lack of any evidence to such a murder is a potential banana skin. I guess the hoaxer could simply be relying on the fact that a lot of murders are unreported or the records have been lost over time.
          Or James Maybrick was referencing an actual murder he had committed (assuming he actually killed her rather than simply 'lefty her for dead')
          which did not make it into the Manchester newspapers. If every Manchester murder made it into at least one Manchester newspaper, and every Manchester newspaper has been checked for this potential murder, then the scrapbook has a problem - it has a murder which should have been found retrospectively in the Manchester newspapers and which was not. But are either or both of my premises correct? Did she die? And - if she died - would her murder definitely have made it into at least one Manchester newspaper?

          You are quite right when you say "It's not something a hoaxer would've had to include, and the lack of any evidence to such a murder is a potential banana skin" but there is more to the situation than that, and the lack of evidence in the Manchester newspapers (assuming that all were checked which I'm sure they would have been) may not reflect a hoaxer's whimsy but actually one or both of my above premises proving to be untrue.
          Iconoclast
          Soldier of Fortune, Man of Peace, Destroyer of Images, Nice Guy, Genius

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          • #50
            Originally posted by Harry D View Post
            'I have walked the streets and have become more than familiar with them'

            I find this line quite interesting too. First of all, would Maybrick have been familiar enough with the labyrinthine streets of Whitechapel after a few rare visits to London? Enough to carry out the murders with the aplomb of the Ripper?
            Come on Harry, you already know the plausible alternative here. He did not have the benefit solely of 'a few rare visits to London'. He had the memory of living there with Sarah Robertson when he was in his twenties coupled with the 'refresher' he could have given himself on taking his room in Middlesex Street. He didn't exactly operate in the darkest alleyways and the deepest of Whitechapel warrens. He was known to be in Buck's Row, Hanbury Street, Durward Street, Mitre Square, Goulston Street, and Miller's Court. None of these locations requires 'the knowledge' (as London taxi-drivers call it).

            Originally posted by Harry D View Post
            Secondly, this line does hit you as a hoaxer's attempt to justify how Maybrick was confident enough to pull off these murders. He's speaking directly to the audience here.
            That is only an argument you can make in retrospect, full in the knowledge that the scrapbook was indeed a proven hoax. Until that day, it's just a supposition based upon how you read it. The perfectly plausible alternative is that Maybrick wrote it because - wait for it - it was simply true.
            Last edited by Iconoclast; 07-24-2019, 10:18 AM.
            Iconoclast
            Soldier of Fortune, Man of Peace, Destroyer of Images, Nice Guy, Genius

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            • #51
              I can't seriously consider it authentic, though, for a multitude of reasons.
              Kind regards, Sam Flynn

              "Suche Nullen" (Nietzsche, Götzendämmerung, 1888)

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              • #52
                Originally posted by Sam Flynn View Post
                I can't seriously consider it authentic, though, for a multitude of reasons.
                And therein lies the obvious problem with every argument you make on the subject, Sam.
                Iconoclast
                Soldier of Fortune, Man of Peace, Destroyer of Images, Nice Guy, Genius

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                • #53
                  My arguments are entirely objective.
                  Kind regards, Sam Flynn

                  "Suche Nullen" (Nietzsche, Götzendämmerung, 1888)

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                  • #54
                    Has anyone tried to look into James and Michael Maybrick's social circles at all? Because, assuming that one of them knew somebody either in the police or in the Home Office with a loose tongue after a brandy or two, information could have passed its way along to James and he could still be the author of the diary without actually being the Ripper. His arsenic habit had an affect on his brain and when combined with his anger of Florence's brief affair, he could have snapped and lost track of reality. I think he would have to have written it in his latter months and after November 88, but it could explain the watch as well. The iffy stuff in there like "an initial here..." could be just the conjurations of an unsettled mind and nothing more.
                    " Queen Vic lured her victims into dark corners with offers of free fish and chips, washed down with White Satin." - forum user C4

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                    • #55
                      Originally posted by Kattrup View Post
                      My own little psychological theory about motivation is that the people fooled by Barrett have now spent 20-25 years discussing this shallow case as if it were the revelations of the Messiah and they don’t want to look like they’ve wasted their time. So they keep denying and obfuscating.
                      Harsh, I guess, but seriously, this case is about as subtle and complex as a pack of butter.
                      I agree entirely, Kattrup. Those people who were, and still are, fooled by Barrett and his "Heinz 57" varieties of forgery claim have now spent so many long years discussing his shallow case, as if it contained the revelations of the Messiah [and not just a naughty old scally] that they don't want to look like they've wasted their time on a hopeless cause. So they keep denying and obfuscating. Harsh, I guess, but seriously, the case for Mike Barrett having had anything to do with creating the diary is about as weighty as a pack of butter that went into the jam butties at an Anfield street party 25 years ago.

                      Love,

                      Caz
                      X


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


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                      • #56
                        Originally posted by Harry D View Post
                        I find the reference to the murder in Manchester quite curious. It's not something a hoaxer would've had to include, and the lack of any evidence to such a murder is a potential banana skin. I guess the hoaxer could simply be relying on the fact that a lot of murders are unreported or the records have been lost over time.
                        Hi Harry,

                        There are enough actual banana skins in the diary to slip up a regiment - in the form of all the dodgy doggerel, none of which was remotely necessary to include, whether or not our hoaxer was up to snuff in the poetry department. And it's clear the author knew they were not exactly John Betjeman - or Richard Crashaw for that matter - because they had to have 'Sir Jim' regretting the fact. And while we now know that Michael Maybrick did write lyrics in addition to composing music [and would almost certainly have tried his hand at verse in any case, as a schoolboy growing up with his brothers], there is no evidence that the adult James was ever a fan or an amateur enthusiast in the art, so why is any of it in there?

                        Love,

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


                        Comment


                        • #57
                          Originally posted by Harry D View Post
                          'I have walked the streets and have become more than familiar with them'

                          I find this line quite interesting too. First of all, would Maybrick have been familiar enough with the labyrinthine streets of Whitechapel after a few rare visits to London? Enough to carry out the murders with the aplomb of the Ripper?

                          Secondly, this line does hit you as a hoaxer's attempt to justify how Maybrick was confident enough to pull off these murders. He's speaking directly to the audience here.
                          Where did you get 'a few rare visits to London' from, Harry?

                          Bernard Ryan, in his 1977 book on the Maybrick case [an alleged source of the Maybrick content of a post-1987 hoax], makes it clear that James often went to London during 1888, staying for a couple of nights at a time, allegedly on business. Ryan's point here was that Florie Maybrick could no longer be sure where her husband was or what he was doing, during his absences from home or his Liverpool office.

                          My own point would be that as this is on the historical record, it tells us very little about the diary author, apart from the fact that they knew.

                          Love,

                          Caz
                          X

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


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                          • #58
                            Originally posted by caz View Post

                            Bernard Ryan, in his 1977 book on the Maybrick case [an alleged source of the Maybrick content of a post-1987 hoax], makes it clear that James often went to London during 1888, staying for a couple of nights at a time, allegedly on business.

                            My own point would be that as this is on the historical record, it tells us very little about the diary author, apart from the fact that they knew.
                            Why shouldn't a 1977 book have provided the diary's author with this information, Caz? That aside, it would be somewhat unlikely for a businessman like Maybrick not to have reason to visit London, so it would be a reasonable guess to make even without Ryan's book.
                            Kind regards, Sam Flynn

                            "Suche Nullen" (Nietzsche, Götzendämmerung, 1888)

                            Comment


                            • #59
                              Originally posted by Sam Flynn View Post
                              Not if we're dealing with an inexpert hoaxer.
                              I would be a thoroughly inexpert hoaxer, Gareth, and as such I would limit myself to a handful of pages only - no rotten rhymes for starters! - and keep pointless inclusions out of it, or at least to an absolute minimum. But maybe you feel that the hoaxer had no clue they were in any way inexpert, so they just went for it, the more pointless inclusions the better, and the more meaningless passages the merrier. And Scotland Yard's finest just let everyone get on with it, as if it wasn't such an obvious fake by an inexpert Barrett or two.

                              Love,

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


                              Comment


                              • #60
                                Originally posted by Sam Flynn View Post
                                Why shouldn't a 1977 book have provided the diary's author with this information, Caz? That aside, it would be somewhat unlikely for a businessman like Maybrick not to have reason to visit London, so it would be a reasonable guess to make even without Ryan's book.
                                You just answered your own question there, Gareth.

                                No reason at all why the 1977 book shouldn't have provided a post-1987 hoaxer with this information, but there is no proof that it was the source used for the diary, and as you say yourself, it never had to be.

                                So no problem then, despite some people's doubts that Maybrick ever needed to visit that Witt fellow in the Minories. Of course, Sir Jim had non-business reasons to frequent the Capital anyway, as his brother lived in the West End and a long-term mistress, with their brood of mini-Mays [see what I did there?], came from the East End. Even an inexpert hoaxer could be expected to have known as much. But did Mike Barrett ever mention Sarah Robertson? You tell me.

                                Love,

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


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