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The Boxall and Freeman Rubaiyat editions

There are two things which do strike me as odd about the involvement of The Rubaiyat in the Tamam Shud Case. Firstly, that two editions are involved – Somerton Man’s W&T edition and Alfred Boxall’s Sha’ir Omar Khayyam.

Secondly, that the latter should be given by ‘Jestyn’ (the nickname of the woman whose phone number was found on the back of Somerton Man’s copy) as a gift to Mr Boxall, it being a translation of FitzGerald’s first edition into Malay by Arthur W. Hamilton.

Why not give a more regular & less esoteric edition – like a W&T Rubaiyat, for example ? Perhaps the answer is as simple as that it was a newly published (1944) and unusual edition – a novelty. Presumably, too, it was given because Mr Boxall was interested in poetry / the Rubaiyat, and perhaps in Malay / Malaya ? 

Bob Forrest

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