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About the Author
The life of Arthur Conan Doyle illustrates the excitement and diversity of the Victorian age unlike that of any other single figure of the period. At different points in his life he was a surgeon on a whaling ship; a GP; an apprentice eye-surgeon; an unsuccessful parliamentary candidate (twice); a multi-talented sportsman; one of the inventors of cross-country skiing in Switzerland; a formidable public speaker; a campaigner against miscarriages of justice; a military strategist; a writer in a range of forms; and the head of an extraordinary family. In his autobiography, he wrote: 'I have had a life which, for variety and romance, could, I think, hardly be exceeded.' He was not wrong. But Conan Doyle was also a Victorian with a twist, a man of tensions and contradictions. He was fascinated by travel, exploration, and invention, indeed all things modern and technological; yet at the same time he was also very traditional, voicing support for values such as chivalry, duty, constancy, and honour. By the time of his death in July 1930 he was a celebrity, achieving worldwide fame and notoriety for his creation of the rationalist, scientific super-detective Sherlock Holmes; yet at the same time his later decades were taken up with his advocacy of the new religion of Spiritualism, in which he was a devoted believer.
Date of Birth:May 22, 1859
Date of Death:July 7, 1930
Place of Birth:Edinburgh, Scotland
Place of Death:Crowborough, Sussex, England
Education:Edinburgh University, B.M., 1881; M.D., 1885
Read an Excerpt
and out amongst the rocks. Behind them their view was cut off by similar hills, black and fantastic, like the slag-heaps at the shaft of a mine. A silence fell upon the little company, and even Sadie's bright face reflected the harshness of Nature. The escort had closed in, and marched beside them, their boots scrunching among the loose black rubble. Colonel Cochrane and Bel- mont were still riding together in the van. " Do you know, Belmont," said the Colonel, in a low voice, " you may think me a fool, but I don't like this one little bit." Belmont gave a short gruff laugh. " It seemed all right in the saloon of the Korosko, but now that we are here we do seem rather up in the air," said he. " Still, you know, a party comes here every week, and nothing has ever yet gone wrong." " I don't mind taking my chances when I am on the war-path," the Colonel answered. " That's all straightforward and in the way of business. But when you have women with you, and a helpless crowd like this, it becomes really dreadful. Of course, the A silence tell upon the little company. chances are a hundred to one that we have no trouble; but if we should havewell, it won't bear thinking about. The wonderful thing is their complete unconsciousness that there is any danger whatever." "Well, I like the English tailor-made dresses well enough for walking, Mr. Stephens," said Miss Sadie from behind them. "But for an afternoon dress, I think the French have more style than the English. Your milliners have a more severe cut, and they don't do the cunning little ribbons and bows and things in the same way." The Colonel smiled at Belmont. " She is quite serene in her mind, at any rate," said he. " Ofcourse, I wouldn't say what I think to any one but you, and I dare say it will all pr...
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I ABSOULOTLY LOVED THE BOOKS
By the author of Sherlock Holmes, this is a fascinating tale of the desert.