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The Adventures Of Sherlock Holmes

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Genere: Giallo
Lingua: inglese
Lunghezza: circa 107600 parole (tempo di lettura: 336-490 minuti)
Prezzo: Gratis
Estratto

A SCANDAL IN BOHEMIA




    To Sherlock Holmes she is always THE woman. I have seldom heard him mention her under any other name. In his eyes she eclipses and predominates the whole of her sex. It was not that he felt any emotion akin to love for Irene Adler. All emotions, and that one particularly, were abhorrent to his cold, precise but admirably balanced mind. He was, I take it, the most perfect reasoning and observing machine that the world has seen, but as a lover he would have placed himself in a false position. He never spoke of the softer passions, save with a gibe and a sneer. They were admirable things for the observer--excellent for drawing the veil from men's motives and actions. But for the trained teasoner to admit such intrusions into his own delicate and finely adjusted temperament was to introduce a distracting factor which might throw a doubt upon all his mental results. Grit in a sensitive instrument, or a crack in one of his own high-power lenses, would not be more disturbing than a strong emotion in a nature such as his. And yet there was but one woman to him, and that woman was the late Irene Adler, of dubious and questionable memory.

    I had seen little of Holmes lately. My marriage had drifted us away from each other. My own complete happiness, and the home-centred interests which rise up around the man who first finds himself master of his own establishment, were sufficient to absorb all my attention, while Holmes, who loathed every form of society with his whole Bohemian soul, remained in our lodgings in Baker Street, buried among his old books, and alternating from week to week between cocaine and ambition, the drowsiness of the drug, and the fierce energy of his own keen nature. He was still, as ever, deeply attracted by the study of crime, and occupied his immense faculties and extraordinary powers of observation in following out those clews, and clearing up those mysteries which had been abandoned as hopeless by the official police. From time to time I heard some vague account of his doings: of his summons to Odessa in the case of the Trepoff murder, of his clearing up of the singular tragedy of the Atkinson brothers at Trincomalee, and finally of the mission which he had accomplished so delicately and successfully for the reigning family of Holland. Beyond these signs of his activity, however, which I merely shared with all the readers of the daily press, I knew little of my former friend and companion.

    One night--it was on the twentieth of March, 1888--I was returning from a journey to a patient (for I had now returned to civil practice), when my way led me through Baker Street. As I passed the well-remembered door, which must always be associated in my mind with my wooing, and with the dark incidents of the Study in Scarlet, I was seized with a keen desire to see Holmes again, and to know how he was employing his extraordinary powers. His rooms were brilliantly lit, and, even as I looked up, I saw his tall, spare figure pass twice in a dark silhouette against the blind. He was pacing the room swiftly, eagerly, with his head sunk upon his chest and his hands clasped behind him. To me, who knew his every mood and habit, his attitude and manner told their own story. He was at work again. He had risen out of his drug-created dreams and was hot upon the scent of some new problem. I rang the bell and was shown up to the chamber which had formerly been in part my own.

    His manner was not effusive. It seldom was; but he was glad, I think, to see me. With hardly a word spoken, but with a kindly eye, he waved me to an armchair, threw across his case of cigars, and indicated a spirit case and a gasogene in the corner. Then he stood before the fire and looked me over in his singular introspective fashion.

    ''Wedlock suits you,'' he remarked. ''I think, Watson, that you have put on seven and a half pounds since I saw you.''

    ''Seven!'' I answered.

    ''Indeed, I should have thought a little more. Just a trifle more, I fancy, Watson. And in practice again, I observe. You did not tell me that you intended to go into harness.''

...continua...

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:: Arthur Conan Doyle

Arthur Ignatius Conan Doyle was born on May 22, 1859, in Edinburgh, Scotland. The Doyles were a Irish-Catholic family. His father suffered from epilepsy and alcoholism and was eventually institutionalized.
He was mainly brought up in Jesuit boarding schools. During this period Doyle lost his belief in the Roman Catholic faith, but the training of the Jesuits influenced deeply his mental development. He entered the University of Edinburgh in 1881, receiving a medical degree in 1885.
He began writing while still in school in order to earn money, and sold his first story The Mystery of the Sasassa Valley to Chambers' Journal in 1879.
After graduation Doyle opened a medical practice in Southsea, Portsmouth, his practice was ''never very absorbing'', at least at first, and he began writing novels in his spare time.
First story about Sherlock Holmes, A Study in Scarlet, was published in 1887 in 'Beeton Christmas Annual'. The novel introduced the detective and Dr. Watson, his good-natured question-raising friend. Their major opponent was the evil genius Moriarty, the classic villain and a kind of doppelganger of Holmes.
The second Sherlock Holmes story, The sign of the four, in 1890 under encouragement from the American publisher Lippincott. The story collects a colourful group of people together, among them Jonathan Small who has a wooden leg and a dwarf from Tonga islands.
The first Sherlock Holmes short story was published in ''The Strand Magazine'' in 1891.
Doyle was married to Louis Hawkins in 1885, and had two children with her; she was seriously ill eight years later and died in 1900. Doyle married again to Jean Leckie in 1907 and fathered three more children.
Following his first wife's death, when the Boer war started, Doyle sailed for South Africa as a doctor and unofficial diplomat, and eventually wrote a definitive account called The Great Boer War.
When his son died in the First World War, Doyle's lifelong interest in spiritualism developed into
a consuming passion.
After Jean died on the 4th of July 1906, Conan Doyle slipped into a debilitating state of depression which lasted many months.
In 1894 Doyle killed off Sherlock Holmes, in The Final Problem, public outcry was so great that Doyle was forced to explain away Holmes' death and continue his career.
In The hound of Baskervilles (1902) Doyle narrated an early case of dead detective The ingenious murder weapon in the story is an animal. Because of public demand Doyle resurrected his popular hero in The Empty House (1903).
In these following stories Holmes stopped using cocaine, but although Doyle's later works have been criticized, several of them, including The Three Garridebs, The Adventure of the Illustrious Client, and The Veiled Lodger, are highly enjoyable. Sherlock Holmes short stories were collected in five books.
Conan Doyle's other publications include plays, verse, memoirs, short stories, and several historical novels and supernatural and speculative fiction.
Doyle died on July 7, 1930 from heart disease at his home, Windlesham, Sussex.

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