Dry As Dust

A Fortean in the Archives


"Tamám Shud"

SOmerton Beach mystery

The man – name still unknown – at the heart of the mysterious 'Tamám Shud' case

Name: unknown. Cause of death: unknown. Occupation: unknown – but perhaps a
former ballet dancer. Possessions: one pack of cigarettes (half filled
with a different brand of smoke); one hidden pocket, concealing a scrap
of paper with two words in Persian, torn from a rare first edition book;
five lines written in an unknown code. Welcome to the world's most
perplexing cold case. Can you help to solve the mystery?

The discovery of a body on an Adelaide beach in December 1948 sparked an
investigation that remains active to this day. Was the dead man a lover
or a fighter – a new father or a spy? Why might an expert witness at the
inquest suggest that he had habitually worn high-heeled shoes? Was
Australia's most eminent pathologist right conclude he had been killed
by an ultra-rare muscle relaxant normally used to tip poison arrows in
Somalia? And what of the mysterious phrase 'Tamám Shud'? It's from Omar
Khayyam, but how is it that the two editions of the poet's famous Rubaiyat that are central to the case seem not to actually exist?

It's a fifty-one-star, gold-plated puzzler, all right. Confused? I'm afraid you probably still will be even after reading the full article here...

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