"Carl Gustav Jung and the Red Book," an all day symposium, featured presentations by prominent Jungian scholars.
Speaker Biography: Jung scholar Sonu Shamdasani is a London-based author, editor, and professor at the Wellcome Trust Centre for the History of Medicine at University College London WIHM/UCL. Shamdasani works discuss the history of psychiatry and psychology from the mid-nineteenth century to current times. Shamdasani holds a BA from Bristol University, followed by MSc, History of Science and Medicine, University College London/Imperial College and gained his Ph.D. in History of Medicine from WIHM/UCL.
Speaker Biography: James Hillman is a psychologist, scholar, international lecturer, pioneer psychologist, and the author of more than twenty books. Hillman has held teaching positions at Yale University, the University of Chicago, Syracuse University, the University of Chicago, and the University of Dallas, where he cofounded the Dallas Institute of Humanities and Culture.
Speaker Biography: Ann Ulanov is a professor of psychiatry and religion at the Union Theological Seminary in New York City. She is the author of several books, including Religion and the Spiritual in Carl Jung and The Healing Imagination: The Meeting of Psyche and Soul.
"Realizing the dire implications should the police find a box full of drugs in Paul McCartney's car, Mohammed manages to pull himself out of the wreckage, locate the box, hobble across the dark highway (scaling a high barrier fence and a traffic island in the process), throw the box as far down a ravine as he can, and still make it back to the accident site before the police arrive.
Hot on the heels of the police come the spectators. They immediately recognize the Mini Cooper as belonging to McCartney, and an audible buzz goes up after they see a slight, dark-haired man being pulled from the car and placed into an ambulance. Putting two and two together and coming up with three, the word quickly spreads that Paul McCartney's been in a car accident.
Chtaibi is taken to a nearby hospital where he is treated for multiple cuts, bruises and other injuries. After the doctors remove all of the glass from his face and body, Mohammed (still bolstered from the drugs at McCartney's) decides he's okay, checks himself out and goes home. Once back at Mount Street he spends a few anxious hours waiting for the phone to ring. "Surely they're going to call," he thinks. "If only to know what happened to the drugs." But, surprisingly, the phone never rings. He decides to go to a party instead. The next morning, hurting and hung-over, he gets a call from Robert Fraser demanding to know what happened. Fraser tells Chtaibi that McCartney and the others were plenty pissed off he never bothered to show up with the drugs, accusing him of giving them the slip and making his own party. Chtaibi tells Fraser the story of what happened and asks Fraser to ask McCartney if his insurance can cover his injuries.[ Questionable - be cautious around such ambiguous phrasing, because remember kids from America, we have Socialised Medicine, this is a National Health Service hospital, so there are no medical bills resulting from his being hospitalised and patched up, and no cost incurred to Chtaibithat would be covered by any insurance ] Fraser says he'll relay the tale to McCartney.
On Monday, Chtaibi is somewhat surprised by an unusual visit from McCartney. But far from being pleased by—or even acknowledging—Chtaibi's super-human efforts to get rid of the stash, McCartney lashes into the Moroccan for wrecking his prized car. Chtaibi pleads with McCartney for help, saying he doesn't have enough money to go to the hospital and he'd like to collect on the insurance. McCartney is adamant. "That car's only insured for me, my chauffeur, Jane [Asher, his fiancé at the time] and Jane's mum," he says. Chtaibi later complains to Fraser about McCartney's lack of sympathy. Fraser tells Chtaibi to not worry about it, that things would be fixed.
The Man Who Killed Paul McCartney
The incredible, never-before-revealed true-life event that sparked the greatest rock 'n' roll rumor of all time
By Jim Yoakum
From Gadfly May/June 2000
In the February 1967 (#43) issue of The Beatles Monthly Book, the Beatles' official fan club magazine, the following blurb appeared in the "Beatle News" section, entitled "FALSE RUMOUR":
"Stories about the Beatles are always flying around Fleet Street. The 7th of January was very icy, with dangerous conditions on the M1 motorway, linking London with the Midlands, and towards the end of the day, a rumor swept London that Paul McCartney had been killed in a car crash on the M1. But, of course, there was absolutely no truth in it at all. As the Beatles' Press Officer found out, when he telephoned Paul's St. John's Wood home and was answered by Paul himself, that he had been at home all day with his black Mini Cooper safely locked up in the garage."
The story goes...
On October 12, 1969, Detroit disc jockey Russ Gibb of WKNR-FM received a bizarre late-night phone call from a listener. This Deep Throat told him that, if he played several tracks off of the Beatles' The White Album backwards, he'd hear some rather interesting things. Curious, Gibb decided "to hell" with his stylus and turntable, and spent the next several hours shredding his copy of The White Album. What Gibb heard was amazing. When played backwards, he discovered a formerly indecipherable mumbling from John Lennon at the end of "I'm So Tired" could now clearly be made out as the literary Beatle moaning "Paul is a dead man, miss him, miss him, miss him." Also, the oft-intoned words "number nine, number nine" from Lennon's music concrete opus, "Revolution #9," miraculously transformed into the eerie phrase "turn me on dead man" when spun counterclockwise.
Clearly, Gibb thought, something was up. So certain he was on to something big, Gibb started digging deeper. He soon discovered various other "clues" relating to the supposed demise of the cute Beatle sprinkled on various other Beatle songs and album covers, going as far back as their Yesterday....And Today LP, released a full three years earlier! Soon after Gibb began enlightening his Motor City listeners to "The Great Cover-up," disc jockey's from competing stations in New York City and beyond picked up this shaggy dog tale, and it wasn't too long before the news "Paul McCartney was dead" began to spread around the world. Within weeks, the sale of new and old Beatles albums soared as both the distraught fan and the merely curious bought clean copies just to play them backwards. (The rumors helped the sales of the just-released Abbey Road, Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band, Magical Mystery Tour, and The White Album. Both Sgt. Pepper's and Magical Mystery Tour, which were released in 1967, re-entered Billboard's Top 200 charts in November 1969. Both LP's stayed in the Top 200 until the spring of 1970).
Faced with this preponderance of "evidence," and coupled with the Beatles' own real lack of comment, the public decided the story must be true. "Okay then," the public said, "we've come not to bury Paul (besides, Lennon had already admitted to doing just that at the end of "Strawberry Fields Forever"), but to ask if Paul is dead, then how did it happen?"
Although many more tales developed than tellers in this story, by 1970 a fairly conclusive and mutually agreed-upon scenario began to develop regarding exactly how Paul had come to meet his maker. As the story goes, on an evening in November 1966 (probably the eighth, a "stupid bloody Tuesday"), an argument took place between McCartney and the other Beatles at Abbey Road Studios. A livid McCartney stormed out of the building, hopped into his Aston Martin and sped off into the night. In his anger, he failed to notice the traffic light change and he spun out of control, smashing into a light pole at full speed, thus decapitating him (in other words, he "blew his mind out in a car"). He was later "Officially Pronounced Dead" on the scene, in the early hours of Wednesday the ninth ("number nine, number nine...). McCartney was then carried in secret to the morgue (note the "O.P.D" patch on McCartney's left sleeve on the inside gatefold of Sgt. Pepper's). Faced with the prospect of losing revenue due to the untimely death of the most popular member of the band, (the story goes) the three "surviving Beatles" hired one William Campbell, a man who supposedly once won a McCartney look-alike contest, to fill in for the dead Beatle. The "clues" then became the Fabs way of subtly and gently breaking the tragic news to the fans. (The entire crash scenario is supposed to be played out in full if you play "Revolution #9" backwards).
Anyway, that's the story of the Paul Is Dead rumor. But there's another story that's never been told—until now. The story of an incredible true-life event that accidentally sparked the greatest rock 'n' roll rumor of all time.
First some background...
If an era can be said to have a father, then London's Swinging Sixties was the bastard child of Robert Hugh Fraser. Fraser was the son of a wealthy Scots banker, and a man who appeared to have everything going for him: looks, class, youth and money. Yet for all of his privileges, Fraser was a frustrated artist at heart who sublimated his creative longings into running one of the best art galleries in London. By 1964, the Robert Fraser Gallery at 69 Duke Street was recognized around the world as being the sharpest, hippest gallery, exhibiting the latest and most important artists of the period. Fraser was also accumulating friends more accustomed to the pop charts than Pop Art. Musicians like Mick Jagger and Keith Richards, Paul McCartney, John Lennon, Brian Jones and others were regular fixtures at both Fraser's gallery, and at his Mount Street apartment. To the still scruffy rockers, Fraser represented all that swung about the Swinging Sixties: the money, the sex and (especially) the drugs. Fraser was where all of the razz-ma-tazz of the era sprang. Without him, smoking dope was just getting high.
Mohammed Chtaibi first met Robert Hugh Fraser in the early 1960s. He was a young Moroccan student, the ward of Mark Gilbey, the multimillionaire heir to the Gilbey liquor fortune, and it wasn't long before Mohammed Chtaibi (then known as Mohammed Hadjij) and Robert Fraser became fast friends. Soon after he opened his gallery, Fraser asked Chtaibi to be his personal assistant and move into the adjoining penthouse on Mount Street, which Fraser watched for an aging movie star, who no longer bothered to drop by. Officially, Chtaibi's job was to pick up and deliver painters and paintings to the gallery, but he soon realized his real job was to baby-sit the gallery while Fraser ran off with his famous friends. Sometimes Fraser would invite Chtaibi along with him (usually to cook, drive or carry the dope), and this is what he did on the first Saturday of January in the winter of 1967. They were going to Paul McCartney's house to have a party.
Fraser and Chtaibi's taxi pulls up to the gate at 7 Cavendish Avenue, McCartney's London home located in the swank St. John's Wood area, late in the afternoon. Twenty or so fans, mostly girls, were already camped outside hoping to get a glimpse of the elusive Beatle. When the slight, dark-haired Chtaibi gets out of the cab the girls all scream, thinking at first glance that he's McCartney, but McCartney is already shuttered inside the three-story detached house, playing rock 'n' roll records. Fraser goes to the gate and presses the intercom button several times. It's many full minutes before McCartney (thinking it's the girls playing pranks again) answers with a laconic "Yeah?" After a brief exchange, the gate swings open just enough for Fraser and Chtaibi to squeeze through, and then clicks closed again.
Once safely ensconced inside the house, the trio retires to McCartney's cluttered back-room lounge to relax. After a few minutes of chat, McCartney exits, but quickly returns with a large book, which he places on a table. Chtaibi watches as McCartney opens up the book. He's surprised to learn it's actually hollowed out in the middle, making the book a secret box, and the box is filled with all manner of hard and soft drugs, from hashish to cocaine, heroin and acid. This is the stash, the heart of the party. McCartney takes out a bag of hash and assigns Mohammed the task of rolling the "Benson & Hashish B-52 Bombers," joints made from a mixture of dope and tobacco, while he and Fraser chat. A few Bombers later, the intercom buzzes again. Within moments, Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, Brian Jones and mutual hipster friend Christopher Gibbs (the nephew of a former British Governor of Rhodesia) are standing in the middle of the room. Now the party starts to get serious, and the Bombers are augmented by some of the harder drugs.
After a few hours of fun, and with darkness falling, the group decides to "make a weekender out of it." Plans are made to drive to Redlands, Richards' secluded thatched-roofed country mansion in West Wittering, Sussex, after a brief stop first at Jagger's place in Hertfordshire. Laughing and joking, they spill out of McCartney's door and shamble toward the cars. Even though three vehicles are parked in McCartney's drive (McCartney's Aston Martin and black Mini Cooper, and Jagger's Mini Cooper), they all decide for some reason to try and cram into Jagger's small car.
Crushed underneath the weight of Richards and Gibbs, Chtaibi suggests they take a second car. McCartney agrees, and tells Chtaibi to get out and follow them in his Mini. (Unlike Jagger's Mini Cooper, McCartney's was especially designed for him as an almost toy version of a Rolls-Royce complete with arm chairs, a wet bar, smoke-tinted glass, a racing-style steering wheel about 12-inches wide and oversized tires. The car was the only one of its kind in Great Britain and was easily recognized as being McCartney's). As a special precaution against possible nosy cops, McCartney hands Chtaibi the book—the heart of the party—and says "meet you there." Moments later, the front gates fly open and the crowd of girls let out a collective shriek of "Paul!!" as the two cars speed past them, bound for the privacy of their home counties.
Although Chtaibi has driven McCartney's Mini many times, it's mainly been short distances, usually local hash runs, and he's a little uneasy with the car's tight steering. He curses to himself as he realizes his suggestion has put him in the dangerous position of driving the car at night, down unfamiliar roads, with no clear idea of his ultimate destination. He's also quite stoned and is having to concentrate hard just to keep the little car between the lines. Within minutes, the two Mini Coopers are well past the bright city lights of London, heading up the M1 into the country dark of Britain's outer regions. Before long they're traveling at speeds upward to 70 mph, dangerous indeed on such narrow black roads better suited for bicycles than automobiles. Chtaibi is having to push the Mini faster than he's comfortable with in order to keep Jagger's taillights in sight.
At about the halfway point in the journey, something crucial happens: Chtaibi runs out of cigarettes. Giving the car more gas, he succeeds in pulling McCartney's Mini up beside Jagger's car and motions to Fraser to toss him some ciggies. Amazingly, considering their speed, Fraser manages to land a few butts inside the car. Jagger and company then pull ahead and out of sight.
At this point, it should be mentioned that in his hurry to get into the Mini outside McCartney's house, Chtaibi accidentally left about a 12-inch section of the car's seat belt dragging on the ground. As he slows down to light his fag, another car comes up from behind him and begins to pass. As it does, the car's tires run over the dangling seat belt. Unaware of the passing car, Chtaibi immediately feels the Mini being tugged to the right. He compensates by instinctively pulling the steering wheel in the opposite direction. At this exact moment, the passing car drives off of the belt. The next thing Chtaibi knows, the Mini is leaving the asphalt and is flying through the air at incredible speed toward a large metal streetlight sitting atop a massive concrete pylon. As the Mini smashes headlong into the pole, the jagged metal of the light shaves the car straight up the middle like a tin can, breaking the engine in two, and leaving Chtaibi unconscious and bleeding and hugging the monstrous lamp between his legs.
He doesn't know how long he's been unconscious. Perhaps just a few minutes, maybe longer or maybe less. But not too long after the crash, Chtaibi starts to awaken. The first thought that occurs to him is not the state of the car, or of his bloodied head and body—it's of the box. The heart of the party. Realizing the dire implications should the police find a box full of drugs in Paul McCartney's car, Mohammed manages to pull himself out of the wreckage, locate the box, hobble across the dark highway (scaling a high barrier fence and a traffic island in the process), throw the box as far down a ravine as he can, and still make it back to the accident site before the police arrive.
Hot on the heels of the police come the spectators. They immediately recognize the Mini Cooper as belonging to McCartney, and an audible buzz goes up after they see a slight, dark-haired man being pulled from the car and placed into an ambulance. Putting two and two together and coming up with three, the word quickly spreads that Paul McCartney's been in a car accident.
Chtaibi is taken to a nearby hospital where he is treated for multiple cuts, bruises and other injuries. After the doctors remove all of the glass from his face and body, Mohammed (still bolstered from the drugs at McCartney's) decides he's okay, checks himself out and goes home. Once back at Mount Street he spends a few anxious hours waiting for the phone to ring. "Surely they're going to call," he thinks. "If only to know what happened to the drugs." But, surprisingly, the phone never rings. He decides to go to a party instead. The next morning, hurting and hung-over, he gets a call from Robert Fraser demanding to know what happened. Fraser tells Chtaibi that McCartney and the others were plenty pissed off he never bothered to show up with the drugs, accusing him of giving them the slip and making his own party. Chtaibi tells Fraser the story of what happened and asks Fraser to ask McCartney if his insurance can cover his injuries. Fraser says he'll relay the tale to McCartney.
On Monday, Chtaibi is somewhat surprised by an unusual visit from McCartney. But far from being pleased by—or even acknowledging—Chtaibi's super-human efforts to get rid of the stash, McCartney lashes into the Moroccan for wrecking his prized car. Chtaibi pleads with McCartney for help, saying he doesn't have enough money to go to the hospital and he'd like to collect on the insurance.
McCartney is adamant. "That car's only insured for me, my chauffeur, Jane [Asher, his fiancé at the time] and Jane's mum," he says.
Chtaibi later complains to Fraser about McCartney's lack of sympathy. Fraser tells Chtaibi to not worry about it, that things would be fixed. They never were.
So, the question is: was Mohammed Chtaibi's unfortunate encounter with Paul McCartney's Mini Cooper the inspiration behind the ensuing Paul Is Dead rumors? While there is no definitive proof that it was, there are an awful lot of coincidences between what did happen and what was rumored.
To start, although it didn't take place in late fall of 1966 (as went the rumor), there really was a car crash involving Paul McCartney's Mini Cooper on Saturday, January 7, 1967 on the M1. While it did not involve McCartney, the car was driven by a man who resembled him enough to start tongues wagging and stories flying.
After Chtaibi's accident, the Beatles suddenly incorporated an inordinate number of references to car crashes and accidents into their lyrics. Rather odd topics for rock songs, and ones previously neglected by the Fab Four. To wit: "He blew his mind out in a car" ("A Day In The Life," recorded February 1967). "You were in a car crash and you lost your hair" ("Don't Pass Me By," recorded June 1968). And these rather bizarre excerpts from "Revolution #9," a song which acts almost as a recreation of a car accident, encompassing screams, crashes, flames and comments from spectators, including: "People ride, people ride. Ride, ride, ride, ride, ride... He hit a pole... He'd better go to see a surgeon... In my broken chair, my wings are broken and so is my hair... It's a fine chemical imbalance... Must've got it between his shoulder blades...", (recorded June 1968).
And for no apparent reason, there's a toy car sitting in a doll's lap on the cover of Sgt. Pepper's. The doll wears a sweater reading "Welcome, The Rolling Stones." The group that evening included McCartney and three of the Stones, and they were headed to Richards' home. Also, for no apparent reason, there's a picture of two cars meeting on a darkened road on page 14 of the Magical Mystery Tour booklet. If these aren't references to Chtaibi's accident, or to "Paul's death" (as denied by the Beatles), then what do they mean and why are they there?
So, did the Beatles use Chtaibi's accident as the inspiration for the hoax and, if so, why? Again, there's no definitive proof that the Beatles had a direct hand in the Paul Is Dead rumor. They have always denied culpability, but the sheer overwhelming abundance of "coincidences" and "clues" sprinkled across four or five albums does cast some shadow on their story. Clearly something was up. As to why they would even entertain doing such a bizarre thing, it's important to remember the times in which this all took place. Less than a year earlier the band had become fed-up with screaming Beatlemania and decided to stop touring in order to concentrate on their music. This was a risky move. No pop band had ever attempted to go from teen idol to serious artist. Would the kids relate to their new mature style? Would the sophisticos they were hoping to reach embrace the former Mop Tops?
Before Sgt. Pepper's was released, neither scenario looked very likely. In fact, the British press had taken to calling the Beatles "washed-up" and "out of ideas." A lot was riding on their next move and it was a tense time. Is it really such a stretch to think four clever men like the Beatles might want to take out a little insurance against the possible failure of Sgt. Pepper's by cooking up a fantastical scheme as bizarre as the Paul Is Dead Rumor? After all, aren't these the same guys who had previously played with our brains by putting backwards singing on "Rain," who sang "tit, tit, tit" on the choruses of "Girl" and who managed to slip the phrase "Paul's a queer" into the ultimate kiddies' song, "Yellow Submarine?" The thinking could have been, should Sgt. Pepper's go belly-up, the band could slowly reveal the "clues as to Paul's demise" some months, or even years, later in order to spur sagging album sales. Embarrassment at the premature discovery of the scheme could easily account for their later adamant denials. It's a brilliant idea. In fact, the whole thing has John Lennon written all over it. Assuming, of course, they had been involved.
When Mohammed Chtaibi first told me his tale nearly 12 years ago, I asked whether or not he believed McCartney and the other Beatles had been involved in the subsequent Paul Is Dead rumor. Chtaibi smiled and, placing tongue-firmly-in-cheek, sarcastically replied: "I hear if you play 'Silly Love Songs' (McCartney's mid-'70s hit) backwards, you can hear him say 'I wish I was dead!'"
"So what harm did it do, then, Pete, for fuck's sake?" John asked rhetorically.
"No harm at all.
The poor fucking bastard, he can't help the way he is."
"I was on holiday with Brian Epstein in Spain, where the rumours went around that he and I were having a love affair. Well, it was almost a love affair, but not quite. It was never consummated. But it was a pretty intense relationship.
It was my first experience with a homosexual that I was conscious was homosexual. He had admitted it to me. We had this holiday together because Cyn was pregnant, and I went to Spain and there were lots of funny stories. We used to sit in a cafe in Torremolinos looking at all the boys and I'd say, 'Do you like that one, do you like this one?' I was rather enjoying the experience, thinking like a writer all the time: I am experiencing this, you know. And while he was out on the tiles one night, or lying asleep with a hangover one afternoon, I remember playing him the song Bad To Me. That was a commissioned song, done for Billy J Kramer, who was another of Brian's singers."
John Lennon All We Are Saying,
"Cyn was having a baby and the holiday was planned, but I wasn't going to break the holiday for a baby and that's what a bastard I was. And I just went on holiday. I watched Brian picking up the boys. I like playing a bit faggy, all that. It was enjoyable, but there were big rumours in Liverpool, it was terrible. Very embarrassing."
John Lennon Lennon Remembers,
Jann S Wenner
Paul McCartney later suggested that Lennon agreed to the holiday in order to assert his authority within The Beatles.
"Brian Epstein was going on holiday to Spain at the same time and he invited John along. John was a smart cookie. Brian was gay, and John saw his opportunity to impress upon Mr Epstein who was the boss of the group. I think that's why he went on holiday with Brian. And good luck to him, too - he was that kind of guy; he wanted Brian to know whom he should listen to. That was the relationship. John was very much the leader in that way, although it was never actually said."
Paul McCartney Anthology
Although neither he nor Epstein spoke on record about the event, Lennon did apparently reveal to his former schoolfriend Pete Shotton what happened. Shotton quoted the exchange at length, and with characteristic frankness, in his 1983 memoir. This is perhaps the fullest published account which claims to shed light on the true nature of Lennon's Spanish encounter with Epstein.
" I visited John at Aunt Mimi's a few days after his return to England. And when he started in about how much he had enjoyed Spain, I could hardly resist taking the piss out of him. "So you had a good time with Brian, then?" I smirked. Nudge nudge, wink wink.
I was somewhat taken aback when John didn't so much as crack a smile. "Oh, fuckin' hell," he groaned. "Not you as well, Pete!"
"What do you mean, not me as well?"
"They're all fucking going on about it."
It's OK, John. Don't take it so serious. I'm just joking, for Christ's sake."
"Actually Pete," he said softly, "Something did happen with him one night."
Now that wiped the grin right off my face. Had I even dreamed there might be any truth whatsoever to the rumors, I would never have made light of the subject in the first place. Still - as John surely knew - I would have stood by him, and let the rest of the world handle the business of passing moral judgement, even if he had just told me he'd committed murder. And John would surely have done the same for me.
Which, after all, is what true friendship is all about.
"What happened," John explained, "is that Eppy just kept on and on at me. Until one night I finally just pulled me trousers down and said to him: 'Oh, for Christ's sake, Brian, just stick it up me fucking arse then.'
"And he said to me, 'Actually, John, I don't do that kind of thing. That's not what I like to do.'
"'Well,' I said, 'what is it you like to do, then?'
"And he said, 'I'd really just like to touch you, John.'
"And so I let him toss me off."
And that was that. End of story.
"That's all, John" I said. "Well, so what? What's the big fucking deal, then?"
"Yeah, so fucking what! The poor bastard. He's having a fucking hard enough time anyway." This was in reference to the "butch" dockers who, on several recent occasions, had rewarded Brian's advances by beating him to a bloody pulp.
"So what harm did it do, then, Pete, for fuck's sake?" John asked rhetorically. "No harm at all. The poor fucking bastard, he can't help the way he is." "
Written on the Occasion of the Massacre at Manchester As I lay asleep in Italy There came a voice from over the Sea And with great power it forth led me To walk in the visions of Poesy. I met Murder on the way - He had a mask like Castlereagh - Very smooth he looked, yet grim; Seven blood-hounds followed him. All were fat; and well they might Be in admirable plight, For one by one, and two by two, He tossed the human hearts to chew Which from his wide cloak he drew. Next came Fraud, and he had on, Like Eldon, an ermined gown; His big tears, for he wept well, Turned to mill-stones as they fell: And the little children, who Round his feet played to and fro, Thinking every tear a gem, Had their brains knocked out by them. Clothed with the Bible, as with light, And the shadows of the night, Like Sidmouth, next, Hypocrisy On a crocodile rode by. And many more Destructions played In this ghastly masquerade, All disguised, even to the eyes, Like Bishops, lawyers, peers, or spies. Last came Anarchy: he rode On a white horse, splashed with blood; He was pale even to the lips, Like Death in the Apocalypse. And he wore a kingly crown; And in his grasp a sceptre shone; On his brow this mark I saw - 'I AM GOD, AND KING, AND LAW!' With a pace stately and fast, Over English land he passed, Trampling to a mire of blood The adoring multitude. And a mighty troop around, With their trampling shook the ground, Waving each a bloody sword, For the service of their Lord. And with glorious triumph, they Rode through England proud and gay, Drunk as with intoxication Of the wine of desolation. O'er fields and towns, from sea to sea, Passed the Pageant swift and free, Tearing up, and trampling down; Till they came to London town. And each dweller, panic-stricken, Felt his heart with terror sicken Hearing the tempestuous cry Of the triumph of Anarchy. For with pomp to meet him came, Clothed in arms like blood and flame, The hired murderers, who did sing 'Thou art God, and Law, and King. 'We have waited, weak and lone For thy coming, Mighty One! Our Purses are empty, our swords are cold, Give us glory, and blood, and gold.' Lawyers and priests, a motley crowd, To the earth their pale brows bowed; Like a bad prayer not over loud, Whispering - 'Thou art Law and God.' - Then all cried with one accord, 'Thou art King, and God and Lord; Anarchy, to thee we bow, Be thy name made holy now!' And Anarchy, the skeleton, Bowed and grinned to every one, As well as if his education Had cost ten millions to the nation. For he knew the Palaces Of our Kings were rightly his; His the sceptre, crown and globe, And the gold-inwoven robe. So he sent his slaves before To seize upon the Bank and Tower, And was proceeding with intent To meet his pensioned Parliament When one fled past, a maniac maid, And her name was Hope, she said: But she looked more like Despair, And she cried out in the air: 'My father Time is weak and gray With waiting for a better day; See how idiot-like he stands, Fumbling with his palsied hands! He has had child after child, And the dust of death is piled Over every one but me - Misery, oh, Misery!' Then she lay down in the street, Right before the horses' feet, Expecting, with a patient eye, Murder, Fraud, and Anarchy. When between her and her foes A mist, a light, an image rose, Small at first, and weak, and frail Like the vapour of a vale: Till as clouds grow on the blast, Like tower-crowned giants striding fast, And glare with lightnings as they fly, And speak in thunder to the sky, It grew - a Shape arrayed in mail Brighter than the viper's scale, And upborne on wings whose grain Was as the light of sunny rain. On its helm, seen far away, A planet, like the Morning's, lay; And those plumes its light rained through Like a shower of crimson dew. With step as soft as wind it passed O'er the heads of men - so fast That they knew the presence there, And looked, - but all was empty air. As flowers beneath May's footstep waken, As stars from Night's loose hair are shaken, As waves arise when loud winds call, Thoughts sprung where'er that step did fall. And the prostrate multitude Looked - and ankle-deep in blood, Hope, that maiden most serene, Was walking with a quiet mien: And Anarchy, the ghastly birth, Lay dead earth upon the earth; The Horse of Death tameless as wind Fled, and with his hoofs did grind To dust the murderers thronged behind. A rushing light of clouds and splendour, A sense awakening and yet tender Was heard and felt - and at its close These words of joy and fear arose As if their own indignant Earth Which gave the sons of England birth Had felt their blood upon her brow, And shuddering with a mother's throe Had turned every drop of blood By which her face had been bedewed To an accent unwithstood, - As if her heart had cried aloud: 'Men of England, heirs of Glory, Heroes of unwritten story, Nurslings of one mighty Mother, Hopes of her, and one another; 'Rise like Lions after slumber In unvanquishable number, Shake your chains to earth like dew Which in sleep had fallen on you - Ye are many - they are few. 'What is Freedom? - ye can tell That which slavery is, too well - For its very name has grown To an echo of your own. 'Tis to work and have such pay As just keeps life from day to day In your limbs, as in a cell For the tyrants' use to dwell, 'So that ye for them are made Loom, and plough, and sword, and spade, With or without your own will bent To their defence and nourishment. 'Tis to see your children weak With their mothers pine and peak, When the winter winds are bleak, - They are dying whilst I speak. 'Tis to hunger for such diet As the rich man in his riot Casts to the fat dogs that lie Surfeiting beneath his eye; 'Tis to let the Ghost of Gold Take from Toil a thousandfold More that e'er its substance could In the tyrannies of old. 'Paper coin - that forgery Of the title-deeds, which ye Hold to something of the worth Of the inheritance of Earth. 'Tis to be a slave in soul And to hold no strong control Over your own wills, but be All that others make of ye. 'And at length when ye complain With a murmur weak and vain 'Tis to see the Tyrant's crew Ride over your wives and you - Blood is on the grass like dew. 'Then it is to feel revenge Fiercely thirsting to exchange Blood for blood - and wrong for wrong - Do not thus when ye are strong. 'Birds find rest, in narrow nest When weary of their wingèd quest Beasts find fare, in woody lair When storm and snow are in the air. 'Asses, swine, have litter spread And with fitting food are fed; All things have a home but one - Thou, Oh, Englishman, hast none! 'This is slavery - savage men Or wild beasts within a den Would endure not as ye do - But such ills they never knew. 'What art thou Freedom? O! could slaves Answer from their living graves This demand - tyrants would flee Like a dream's dim imagery: 'Thou art not, as impostors say, A shadow soon to pass away, A superstition, and a name Echoing from the cave of Fame. 'For the labourer thou art bread, And a comely table spread From his daily labour come In a neat and happy home. 'Thou art clothes, and fire, and food For the trampled multitude - No - in countries that are free Such starvation cannot be As in England now we see. 'To the rich thou art a check, When his foot is on the neck Of his victim, thou dost make That he treads upon a snake. 'Thou art Justice - ne'er for gold May thy righteous laws be sold As laws are in England - thou Shield'st alike the high and low. 'Thou art Wisdom - Freemen never Dream that God will damn for ever All who think those things untrue Of which Priests make such ado. 'Thou art Peace - never by thee Would blood and treasure wasted be As tyrants wasted them, when all Leagued to quench thy flame in Gaul. 'What if English toil and blood Was poured forth, even as a flood? It availed, Oh, Liberty, To dim, but not extinguish thee. 'Thou art Love - the rich have kissed Thy feet, and like him following Christ, Give their substance to the free And through the rough world follow thee, 'Or turn their wealth to arms, and make War for thy belovèd sake On wealth, and war, and fraud - whence they Drew the power which is their prey. 'Science, Poetry, and Thought Are thy lamps; they make the lot Of the dwellers in a cot So serene, they curse it not. 'Spirit, Patience, Gentleness, All that can adorn and bless Art thou - let deeds, not words, express Thine exceeding loveliness. 'Let a great Assembly be Of the fearless and the free On some spot of English ground Where the plains stretch wide around. 'Let the blue sky overhead, The green earth on which ye tread, All that must eternal be Witness the solemnity. 'From the corners uttermost Of the bounds of English coast; From every hut, village, and town Where those who live and suffer moan, 'From the workhouse and the prison Where pale as corpses newly risen, Women, children, young and old Groan for pain, and weep for cold - 'From the haunts of daily life Where is waged the daily strife With common wants and common cares Which sows the human heart with tares - 'Lastly from the palaces Where the murmur of distress Echoes, like the distant sound Of a wind alive around 'Those prison halls of wealth and fashion, Where some few feel such compassion For those who groan, and toil, and wail As must make their brethren pale - 'Ye who suffer woes untold, Or to feel, or to behold Your lost country bought and sold With a price of blood and gold - 'Let a vast assembly be, And with great solemnity Declare with measured words that ye Are, as God has made ye, free - 'Be your strong and simple words Keen to wound as sharpened swords, And wide as targes let them be, With their shade to cover ye. 'Let the tyrants pour around With a quick and startling sound, Like the loosening of a sea, Troops of armed emblazonry. Let the charged artillery drive Till the dead air seems alive With the clash of clanging wheels, And the tramp of horses' heels. 'Let the fixèd bayonet Gleam with sharp desire to wet Its bright point in English blood Looking keen as one for food. 'Let the horsemen's scimitars Wheel and flash, like sphereless stars Thirsting to eclipse their burning In a sea of death and mourning. 'Stand ye calm and resolute, Like a forest close and mute, With folded arms and looks which are Weapons of unvanquished war, 'And let Panic, who outspeeds The career of armèd steeds Pass, a disregarded shade Through your phalanx undismayed. 'Let the laws of your own land, Good or ill, between ye stand Hand to hand, and foot to foot, Arbiters of the dispute, 'The old laws of England - they Whose reverend heads with age are gray, Children of a wiser day; And whose solemn voice must be Thine own echo - Liberty! 'On those who first should violate Such sacred heralds in their state Rest the blood that must ensue, And it will not rest on you. 'And if then the tyrants dare Let them ride among you there, Slash, and stab, and maim, and hew, - What they like, that let them do. 'With folded arms and steady eyes, And little fear, and less surprise, Look upon them as they slay Till their rage has died away. 'Then they will return with shame To the place from which they came, And the blood thus shed will speak In hot blushes on their cheek. 'Every woman in the land Will point at them as they stand - They will hardly dare to greet Their acquaintance in the street. 'And the bold, true warriors Who have hugged Danger in wars Will turn to those who would be free, Ashamed of such base company. 'And that slaughter to the Nation Shall steam up like inspiration, Eloquent, oracular; A volcano heard afar. 'And these words shall then become Like Oppression's thundered doom Ringing through each heart and brain, Heard again - again - again - 'Rise like Lions after slumber In unvanquishable number - Shake your chains to earth like dew Which in sleep had fallen on you - Ye are many - they are few.'
This work was published before January 1, 1923, and is in the public domain worldwide because the author died at least 100 years ago.
"As far as I can recollect, it was entirely written by him."
Mary Shelley, 1831
PREFACE TO THE 1831 EDITION OF FRANKENSTEIN
PREFACE TO THE 1818 EDITION OF FRANKENSTEIN
Anonymously penned by Percy Bysshe Shelley
The event on which this fiction is founded has been supposed, by Dr. Darwin, and some of the physiological writers of Germany, as not of impossible occurrence. I shall not be supposed as according the remotest degree of serious faith to such an imagination; yet, in assuming it as the basis of a work of fancy, I have not considered myself as merely weaving a series of supernatural terrors. The event on which the interest of the story depends is exempt from the disadvantages of a mere tale of spectres or enchantment. It was recommended by the novelty of the situations which it develops; and, however impossible as a physical fact, affords a point of view to the imagination for the delineating of human passions more comprehensive and commanding than any which the ordinary relations of existing events can yield.
I have thus endeavoured to preserve the truth of the elementary principles of human nature, while I have not scrupled to innovate upon their combinations. The Iliad, the tragic poetry of Greece—Shakespeare, in The Tempest and Midsummer Night’s Dream—and novelist, who seeks to confer or receive amusement from his labours, may, without presumption, apply to prose fiction a licence, or rather a rule, from the adoption of which so many exquisite combinations of human feeling have resulted in the highest specimens of poetry.
The circumstance on which my story rests was suggested in casual conversation. It was commenced partly as a source of amusement, and partly as an expedient for exercising any untried resources of mind.
Other motives were mingled with these as the work proceeded. I am by no means indifferent to the manner in which whatever moral tendencies exist in the sentiments or characters it contains shall affect the reader; yet my chief concern in this respect has been limited to avoiding the enervating effects of the novels of the present day and to the exhibition of the amiableness of domestic affection, and the excellence of universal virtue.
The opinions which naturally spring from the character and situation of the hero are by no means to be conceived as existing always in my own conviction; nor is any inference justly to be drawn from the following pages as prejudicing any philosophical doctrine of whatever kind. It is a subject also of additional interest to the author that this story was begun in the majestic region where the scene is principally laid, and in society which cannot cease to be regretted.
I passed the summer of 1816 in the environs of Geneva. The season was cold and rainy, and in the evenings we crowded around a blazing wood fire, and occasionally amused ourselves with some German stories of ghosts, which happened to fall into our hands. These tales excited in us a playful desire of imitation. Two other friends (a talemost especially Milton, in Paradise Lost, conform to this rule; and the most humble from the pen of one of whom would be far more acceptable to the public than anything I can ever hope to produce) and myself agreed to write each a story founded on some supernatural occurrence.
The weather, however, suddenly became serene; and my two friends left me on a journey among the Alps, and lost, in the magnificent scenes which they present, all memory of their ghostly visions. The following tale is the only one which has been completed."
"Let us be clear about one thing up front, Frankenstein is not a horror story. It is not merely a contest-winning tale born from a stormy summer in Geneva.
Frankenstein was not conceived in a dream nor in the mind of a young woman who had run away from her father to join her life to a radical young poet.
Frankenstein’s iconic status in the feminist canon of English literature has made the question of authorship as closed as that of Moses’ authorship of the Bible’s Pentateuch among evangelical Christians.
Cursed are those who suggest a reexamination of the evidence, and damned are those who dare trample underfoot the sacrosanct agenda which has become more important than the historical evidence.
Nonetheless, history is a far more astute judge of truth than those who create and protect agendas.
Frankenstein is the work of human hands, its message is earthly, its authorship is fair game, and though the critics will gnash their teeth in the face of the following evidence, the time has come for Frankenstein’s anonymous author to be given credit for his tale. It is humanity’s duty to inquire after truth and to assign credit where credit is due, for our goal is advancement rather than entrenched ignorance.
Frankenstein is an autobiographical story of Percy Bysshe Shelley."
Nemesis, winged balancer of life, dark-faced goddess, daughter of Justice,
"It is cocaine," he said, "a seven-per-cent solution.
Would you care to try it?"
"I have been guilty of several monographs. They are all upon technical subjects.
Here, for example, is one 'Upon the Distinction between the Ashes of the Various Tobaccos'.
In it I enumerate a hundred and forty forms of cigar, cigarette, and pipe tobacco, with coloured plates illustrating the difference in the ash."
"Hence the cocaine.
I cannot live without brain-work.
What else is there to live for?
Stand at the window here. Was ever such a dreary, dismal, unprofitable world?
See how the yellow fog swirls down the street and drifts across the dun-coloured houses.
What could be more hopelessly prosaic and material?
What is the use of having powers, Doctor, when one has no field upon which to exert them?
Crime is commonplace, existence is commonplace, and no qualities save those which are commonplace have any function upon earth.
"His career has been an extraordinary one. He is a man of good birth and excellent education, endowed by nature with a phenomenal mathematical faculty. At the age of twenty-one he wrote a treatise upon the Binomial Theorem, which has had a European vogue. On the strength of it he won the Mathematical Chair at one of our smaller universities, and had, to all appearance, a most brilliant career before him. But the man had hereditary tendencies of the most diabolical kind. A criminal strain ran in his blood, which, instead of being modified, was increased and rendered infinitely more dangerous by his extraordinary mental powers. Dark rumors gathered round him in the university town, and eventually he was compelled to resign his chair and to come down to London, where he set up as an army coach. So much is known to the world, but what I am telling you now is what I have myself discovered.
"As you are aware, Watson, there is no one who knows the higher criminal world of London so well as I do. For years past I have continually been conscious of some power behind the malefactor, some deep organizing power which forever stands in the way of the law, and throws it shield over the wrong-doer. Again and again in cases of the most varying sorts -- forgery cases, robberies, murders -- I have felt the presence of this force, and I have deduced its action in many of those undiscovered crimes in which I have not been personally consulted. For years I have endeavored to break through the veil which shrouded it, and at last the time came when I seized my thread and followed it, until it led me, after a thousand cunning windings, to ex-Professor Moriarty of mathematical celebrity.
"He is the Napoleon of crime, Watson. He is the organizer of half that is evil and of nearly all that is undetected in this great city. He is a genius, a philosopher, an abstract thinker. He has a brain of the first order. He sits motionless, like a spider in the center of its web, but that web has a thousand radiations, and he knows well every quiver of each of them. He does little himself. He only plans. But his agents are numerous and splendidly organized. Is there a crime to be done, a paper to be abstracted, we will say, a house to be rifled, a man to be removed -- the word is passed to the Professor, the matter is organized and carried out. The agent may be caught. In that case money is found for his bail or his defence. But the central power which uses the agent is never caught -- never so much as suspected. This was the organization which I deduced, Watson, and which I devoted my whole energy to exposing and breaking up.
"But the Professor was fenced round with safeguards so cunningly devised that, do what I would, it seemed impossible to get evidence which would convict in a court of law. You know my powers, my dear Watson, and yet at the end of three months I was forced to confess that I had at last met an antagonist who was my intellectual equal. My horror at his crimes was lost in my admiration at his skill. But at last he made a trip -- only a little, little trip -- but it was more than he could afford when I was so close upon him. I had my chance, and, starting from that point, I have woven my net round him until now it is all ready to close. In three days -- that is to say, on Monday next -- matters will be ripe, and the Professor, with all the principal members of his gang, will be in the hands of the police. Then will come the greatest criminal trial of the century, the clearing up of over forty mysteries, and the rope for all of them; but if we move at all prematurely, you understand, they may slip out of our hands even at the last moment.
"Now, if I could have done this without the knowledge of Professor Moriarty, all would have been well. But he was too wily for that. He saw every step which I took to draw my toils round him. Again and again he strove to break away, but I as often headed him off. I tell you, my friend, that if a detailed account of that silent contest could be written, it would take its place as the most brilliant bit of thrust-and-parry work in the history of detection. Never have I risen to such a height, and never have I been so hard pressed by an opponent. He cut deep, and yet I just undercut him. This morning the last steps were taken, and three days only were wanted to complete the business. I was sitting in my room thinking the matter over, when the door opened and Professor Moriarty stood before me.
"My nerves are fairly proof, Watson, but I must confess to a start when I saw the very man who had been so much in my thoughts standing there on my thresh-hold. His appearance was quite familiar to me. He is extremely tall and thin, his forehead domes out in a white curve, and his two eyes are deeply sunken in this head. He is clean-shaven, pale, and ascetic-looking, retaining something of the professor in his features. His shoulders are rounded from much study, and his face protrudes forward, and is forever slowly oscillating from side to side in a curiously reptilian fashion. He peered at me with great curiosity in his puckered eyes.
"'You have less frontal development that I should have expected,' said he, at last. 'It is a dangerous habit to finger loaded firearms in the pocket of one's dressing-gown.'