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Are there any ghosts that are captured on photos?

More specifically, I'm referring to this famous ghost picture:

A ghost

I've never heard anyone debunking the myth of this photo, but I think this picture is so famous that someone must have dug it out and made it a shooting target, no?

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Compare with crop-circles: while it is hard to prove a specific circle has been made by humans, it is easy to show it CAN be made, and using Occam razor we must conclude that assuming aliens exist, arrived and did nothing more then make the circle is a bit more "complicated" than needed. Same here: Apart from having a perfect account of how this image was made, and proof every step of it, its near impossible to proof this is 'fake'. but: - it is easily shown that an image like this isn't all that hard to recreate - Occam's razor says that using above method (basically needs no extra assumption –  Nanne Mar 6 '11 at 14:34
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Well, given that ghosts are not proven to exist, and given that there are innumerable examples of photographic fraud - I do think that providing alternate ways of producing the picture is enough to debunk it. - Photoshop - Double exposure - Inclined glass technique - Negative manipulation –  Sklivvz Mar 6 '11 at 14:48
    
Can you please rephrase the title to reflect the actual question? :-) –  Sklivvz Mar 6 '11 at 15:57
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I don't see a ghost on the photo. How do ghosts look like? –  user unknown Mar 7 '11 at 19:52

1 Answer 1

up vote 45 down vote accepted

The "ghost" in question is known as the Brown Lady of Raynham Hall. And, although often still presented as evidence of the supernatural, it's also pretty well debunked — see this detailed article. In short, a 1937 analysis notes that there are other visual artifacts in the picture indicating a double exposure, but these are normally cropped out. But, even when one looks at the version you've posted, it's clear that the banisters have become crooked — the two exposures don't line up perfectly. Also the picture is generally printed very darkly, disguising the fact that it was taken at 4PM (and hiding more visual anomalies).

And finally, the smeary blur in the photo does not match previous "eye witness" descriptions of the ghost, which described a detailed and real-seeming person. Given that, were the ghost actually real, it would be awfully fortunate that she turned out to look just like a double exposure.

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