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The Adventure of the Speckled Band

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Introduction

The Adventure of the Speckled Band The story is called 'The Adventure of the Speckled Band' and is a detective fiction. It is set in the year 1983. Evidence from the text to show this is where it says, 'year '83'. The main settings are Baker Street (city) and Stoke Moran (countryside). The story is very appealing as it has use of the 'Locked Room' mystery; which in those days was very popular. The mentioning of exotic animals is also very exciting and has a good effect on readers. It may remind some of Edgar Allan Poes. Ferocious animals like the cheetah could be entertaining as well as slightly humorous ones like the baboon. It is also very appealing as it has a 'hero' (Sherlock Holmes) and 'villain' (Dr Roylott). The Speckled Band is presented as a 'locked room' mystery. It has good use of red herrings; distractions from the real murderer/killer. It is written in first person, which makes us more intimate with the narrator, who in this case is Dr Watson. The cheetah, baboon and the gypsies are all 'red herrings' and Sir Arthur Conan Doyle made good use of them. Never would I have guessed that it was a snake that killed Julia although it was logical. The use of the words 'the speckled band' is slightly interesting to use on a snake, but also clever and mysterious. The snake was around the neck of Dr Roylott like a 'band' and the body of the snake was 'speckled', hence the title of the story: 'The Adventure of the Speckled Band'. ...read more.

Middle

Furthermore, Watson is an assistant, a friend and a student of Sherlock Holmes. In the narrative, Doctor Watson says that Holmes trusts him completely. Because Watson is the narrator, we don't know if it's just his opinions or if he's telling the truth, So from his point of view, it seems as though Holmes trusts him completely. Miss Helen Stoner Miss Helen Stoner is a very respectable young woman aged around 30. She is the victim's sister, the victim being Miss Julia Stoner. Her mother's will stated that she was to be left money when she married. Possibly for the mourning period, she was 'dressed in black and heavily veiled.' This may have been the dress code for the middle and upper class women in those days. This shows cultural context. Words like 'wretched' make the reader feel sympathy for her. She's the potential victim as Dr Roylott is planning to murder her, however she's already a victim of Dr Roylott's violence with the 'five livid spots' on her wrist. She's very frightened and Sit Arthur Conan Doyle uses the method of simile to describe her eyes 'like those of some hunted animal.' This proves that Miss Helen Stoner had been thinking and mourning too much for the loss of her beloved sister. Dr Grimsby Roylott Dr Grimsby Roylott is a murderous violent doctor. He murdered one of his daughters; Miss Julia Stoner and his other daughter is his other potential victim. ...read more.

Conclusion

Men respected women very much and were very gallant. Just like Dr Watson and Sherlock Holmes were very polite and kind to Miss Helen Stoner. Women also may have had dress codes back then. They also had specific dress codes for mourning periods. Just like Miss Helen Stoner was 'heavily veiled' and 'dressed in black.' They had lack of communications as to signal the start of Sherlock Holmes's plan, they used a lamp. All this is concluded by the text, text order, attitudes, words used and literally everything. Conclusion I liked the story very much. It was very interesting and there was much tension. I liked the use of 'red herrings' very much, as I would never have guessed that it was the snake. At first I didn't really know what the title meant, but I came to know that it was in fact talking about the snake in relation to how it does its killing. The mentioning of exotic animals, I found very interesting, but I didn't really think that the baboon and cheetah had much relevance to the story. I thought the story in itself was an achievement and very amazing. I would indeed read it again, had I the time. I thought the use of the language very appealing and I loved the long words used and they contrasted the language and vocabulary a lot. Conan Doyle is a superb author and if I could, I would read all his stories. I liked the intimate feeling I had with the story, this feeling that I was there in place of Dr Watson. It made me feel exactly what Dr Watson was feeling. ...read more.

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