By Kerry Greenwood
In 1948 a guy used to be came upon lifeless on an Adelaide seashore. Well-dressed and unmarked, he had a half-smoked cigarette through his aspect, yet no id files. Six many years on we do not recognize who he was once, how he received there or how he died. Somerton guy is still considered one of Australia's such a lot mysterious chilly situations. but it's the weird and wonderful information of this example that make it the stuff of a undercover agent novel. The lacking labels from all his garments. The tiny piece of paper with the phrases 'Tamam Shud' came across sewn into the liner of the useless man's coat. A mysterious code stumbled on etched contained in the very booklet of Persian poetry from which this be aware was once torn. Brimming with proof which are stranger than fiction, the case has intrigued novelist Kerry Greenwood for nearly her entire lifestyles. She is going on a trip into her personal earlier to aim to unravel this crime, uncovering a brand new method of writing approximately actual crime – and herself – as she is going.
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Extra resources for Tamam Shud. The Somerton Man Mystery
The Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam, stanza 30 Somerton Man, in extremis, was five feet, eleven inches tall, which is 180 centimetres. He had grey eyes, also called hazel – admittedly a fugitive colour – and blond to reddish hair, greying at the temples. He was healthy, well-muscled and clean, with manicured fingernails and toenails. He was uncircumcised. His legs were tanned. His toes were unusual, forced into a wedge as though he habitually wore tight, pointed high-heeled boots, like a stockman or a dancer or a person willing to suffer to be beautiful.
Life could hardly have been more extinct in Somerton Man. The doctor who declared him dead suggested that he must have had a heart attack and sent him to the morgue for a post-mortem. The body was processed in the usual way, being stripped and tagged and refrigerated. There was nothing odd about a heart attack victim, so no special notice was taken of the half-smoked cigarette, but the contents of his pockets were logged, as follows: Railway ticket to Henley Beach Bus ticket to North Glenelg American metal comb Packet of Juicy Fruit chewing gum Packet of Army Club cigarettes with seven Kenistas cigarettes inside Handkerchief Packet of Bryant & May matches He had no wallet, no identity documents, no money and no passport.
Somerton Man was entirely, as police parlance says now, ‘off the grid’. He had no passport, no demob certificate, no ration card, no seaman’s ticket, no union membership card. Without these things, or at least one of them, he would have found work hard to come by in Australia, where the police were prone to ask for identification from anyone who was in any way different – on the street late at night or consorting with known criminals (my dad said you could do that any night just by walking down Rundle Street) or simply unknown to them personally.