Wednesday, 31 August 2011

Jack the Ripper Remembered

Or should that be Mary Nichols? The reason I ask is because today is the 123rd anniversary of the day the never-captured Victorian serial killer Jack the Ripper claimed his first victim.

In the early hours of the 31 August 1888, Mary Ann Nichols was found murdered in the dismal East End thoroughfare of Bucks Row, making her the first of the Whitechapel murder victims. Between then and early November of the same year, the killer who would become identified as Saucy Jack murdered and mutilated another four women.

Jack's enduring appeal is thanks largely to the fact that he was never caught, allowing for a whole host of possible explanations to be conjured up regarding who he was and why he murdered his victims the way he did. It's for this reason that he's so popular with speculative fiction writers.

Jack has already made an appearance in the world of Pax Britannia - specifically the fifth Ulysses Quicksilver adventure Blood Royal - which allowed me to provide my only imagined solution to the mystery, and I am planning on having 'him' return in the future.

And the latest theory as to Jack's true identity? That he was none other than Inspector Frederick Abberline - the very man tasked with capturing the Ripper! It's certainly an intriguing idea, and one that would doubtless make a good subject for a novel...

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