Tuesday, October 15, 2019
Short stories of Sherlock Holmes Essay Example for Free
Short stories of Sherlock Holmes Essay Title: Review two stories for a magazine called Crime Monthly, saying why such old examples of the crime genre are still popular today. Introduction Many people say that the short stories of Sherlock Holmes were the best detective stories ever written. Sir Arthur Conan Doyle wrote these stories, which were first published in the Strand magazine in 1890. These stories included A Scandal in Bohemia, The Hound of the Baskervilles, The Copper Beaches, A Case of Identity, The Man With The Twisted Lip and others. People in Victorian England really enjoyed reading the stories, the main reason for which was that there were many murderers running free at the time, which the police force couldnt catch so people didnt believe that the police was sufficient. Arthur Conan Doyles character was very liked because no case seemed to challenge him and he always defeated the evil villain. The Red Headed League was first published in 1891 and The Speckled Band was first published in 1892 in the Strand magazine. One of the key elements of Victorian detective stories is that the crime must be solved by logical means, not by supernatural causes or by a lucky accident. This is what happened in all of the Sherlock Holmes stories. In both The Red Headed League and The Speckled Band Sherlock Holmes solves the crimes by using powers of deduction and his own intelligence. Another important element of Victorian detective stories is that the investigator must not wittingly conceal clues or the reasons for his deductions from the reader. At the end of both stories Sherlock Holmes explains to the villain and to his companion Dr Watson how he solved the crime. Even though the stories of Sherlock Holmes are over a century old they are still read and loved by millions of people across the world today. I think the main reason for this is because Arthur Conan Doyle used many techniques, like red herrings, twists, and very detailed descriptions of the characters and settings which makes the reader feel as though they are part of the story and encourages the reader to try and solve the mystery themselves. Also, even though the stories were written over 100 years the crime that was going on then is still going on now and people still like the thought of villains always being punished, so the Victorian society is very similar to our society at the moment. Arthur Conan Doyle used very detailed descriptions of the setting and location in the two stories to create a certain atmosphere. The Head Headed League was set in London, mainly around Saxe-Couburg Square, in 1891. Arthur Conan Doyle created an atmosphere by saying that Saxe-Couburg Square is a pokey, little, shabby-genteel place, which immediately makes the reader imagine a worn out and cramped place, also it makes the reader suspect that something bad happens there, because there is often trouble in such places. The Square is described as being dingy, which makes the reader think that the place is dark and dirty with smoke and grime. The writer even describes the atmosphere as being uncongenial so obviously it is not a very pleasant place to live in. This atmosphere is created so that the reader can deduct that Jabez Wilson wasnt very well off and that he desperately needed the money that Mr Duncan Ross gave him to look after his home and business. The Speckled Band was mainly set in Stoke Moran, Surrey, in 1883. Sir Arthur Conan Doyle created an atmosphere by saying that the house is half renovated and half in a ruin. The building itself is described as having a high central portion and two wings. This sounds like it once was a very big and grand house, but over the past couple of years Dr Roylott didnt have enough money to look after it. He didnt have enough money to look after the whole house so he modernized half of the house, so the left half was left with broken windows blocked with wooden boards and with the roof being partly caved in. In contrast, the right part of the house was comparatively modern. This atmosphere is created so that the reader can deduct that Dr Roylott didnt have enough money to look after the house, and the extra sum of money that would go to Helen Stoner after her marriage would have ruined him. The main characters in all of the Sherlock Holmes stories are Sherlock Holmes and Dr Watson. Dr Watson is Holmes colleague, who appears to be a lot weaker then him in solving crimes. The main reason for this, seems that Dr Watson doesnt notice things that Holmes does, like when they were both observing Mr Jabez Wilson in The Red Headed League Watson noticed the outside appearance, such as that he was wearing baggy grey shepherds check trousers, whereas Holmes noticed much deeper things, such as that hes done manual labour because his right hand is bigger than his left. Also the language that Holmes uses is a lot more mysterious then the language that Watson uses which suggests to the reader that Watson is less educated then Holmes. Holmes uses many different techniques to solve the crimes in both stories, mainly he follows clues and uses his own intelligence. Holmes is very skilful, he is not only a great detective but also a master of disguise. This was shown in both The Man With The Twisted Lip and A Scandal in Bohemia, where Holmes disguised himself as a drug addict and an old man. Sherlock Holmes and Dr Watson are similar to a few modern day detectives like Inspector Morse and Detective Lewis because they too follow clues to solve the crime and they work as a duo. Sherlock Holmes and Dr Watson follow clues to make deductions and solve the crimes. The first clue in The Red Headed League was that the clerk agreed to work for half wages which meant that he was either not very clever of he had a special reason for wanting to work at the pawnbrokers. Holmes assumes the second is true. The advertisement for the Red Headed League was another clue because it seemed almost as though it was targeted at Jabez Wilson, which was very suspicious. The nature of the job was another clue because it was use-less therefore we could deduct that the job was merely an activity that would get Jabez Wilson out of the shop. Then when Jabez Wilson described his assistant Vincent Spaulding, Holmes instantly recognized the description and realized that his real name is John Clay and hes a murderer. Spauldings interest in photography and his stained wrinkled trousers suggested that he did something dirty in the seller, like maybe he was digging a tunnel. Then Holmes tapped on the payment in front of Jabez Wilsons shop and the tunnel wasnt there, so he went to the back of the shop to find a City and Suburban bank, which is probably the place were the tunnel is going to. The fact that the Red Headed League was dissolved was a clue to that the digging had finished. And the fact that nineteenth-century banks were closed on weekends and Mondays so Holmes knew that John Clay would rob the bank on Saturday, leaving plenty of time to get away.