Lewis Carroll

Lewis Carroll

After his death in 1898, Charles Lutwidge Dodgson, more famous for his pen name "Lewis Carroll", became the subject of a rumour that he was the mysterious and violent killer known as "Jack the Ripper". Lewis Carroll is not commonly known for the suspicion that he was the killer. His name is very famous, however, for being the name behind Alice in Wonderland, Through the Looking Glass, and several famous poems. Despite the fact that there is absolutely no evidence whatsoever connecting Lewis to the murders, the rumour persists.

The theory that Lewis is the killer is primarily based on two ideas. Lewis is suspected by some historians, and even a few of his biographers, of being a sexual deviant - perhaps even a paedophile. He had a very close relationship for several years with a young girl named Alice Liddell - who might have been the inspiration for Alice in Wonderland, and appeared to have additional female friends from the same age group. He enjoyed photography and often photographed children in nude or semi-nude situations. In fairness, it is important to note that he also did have fully-clothed, adult subjects as well.

Some experts claim to see veiled references to the future murders in his earlier poems. Dubious anagrams and the fact that Lewis mentions soap in one of his poems form the basis for most of the "evidence" that he was the killer. The anagrams simply take lines from some of his poems and rearrange the word order, conveniently leaving out or adding additional letters when necessary, to form sentences that show Lewis' guilt. This same trick can be done to any other sentence written using the same alphabet, and as such is a very weak tool in proving that Lewis is the killer.

Lewis Carroll is considered by most serious experts a very unlikely suspect, despite the suspicions that he might fit some sort of psychological profile. On a popular Jack the Ripper case information website, he has been voted the least popular of 22 suspects. Most biographies of his life do not even merit the suspicion with a mention.