Sir Arthur Conan Doyle was a physician and writer, born in Edinburg on May 22, 1859.
Today is the anniversary of his death, on July 7, 1930.
Conan Doyle is probably best known as the creator of the iconic Sherlock Holmes.
Holmes and his faithful biographer, Dr. Watson, figure in several novels and short stories, solving mysterious crimes that confound Scotland Yard.
As a consulting, or private, detective, Sherlock Holmes is often gathering evidence or cogitating on probable sequences of events. The results are his famous deductions and inferences.
The detective’s relationship with the official police force is usually somewhat contemptuous. They don’t always appreciate his methods either.
As Inspector Lestrade said,
“I find it hard enough to tackle facts, Holmes, without flying away after theories and fancies.”
This is in The Boscombe Valley Mystery, and Holmes’ reply is priceless:
“You are right,” said Holmes demurely; “you do find it very hard to tackle the facts.”
However, Holmes is always willing to give the police credit when they deserve it.
“The authorities are excellent at amassing facts, though they do not always use them to advantage.”
Arthur Conan Doyle was actually so tired of writing Sherlock Holmes adventures for an adoring public that he tried to kill off Holmes—and ended up needing to resurrect him!