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Chapter 1—The Warning "I am inclined to think—" said I. "I should do so," Sherlock Holmes remarked impatiently. I believe that I am one of the most long-suffering of mortals; but I'll admit that I was annoyed at the sardonic interruption. "Really, Holmes," said I severely, "you are a little trying at times." He was too much absorbed with his own thoughts to give any immediate answer to my remonstrance. He leaned upon his hand,... more...

Adventure I. Silver Blaze "I am afraid, Watson, that I shall have to go," said Holmes, as we sat down together to our breakfast one morning. "Go! Where to?" "To Dartmoor; to King's Pyland." I was not surprised. Indeed, my only wonder was that he had not already been mixed up in this extraordinary case, which was the one topic of conversation through the length and breadth of England. For a whole day my companion had rambled about the room... more...

CHAPTER I. THE HEGIRA OF THE WESTS FROM EDINBURGH I John Fothergill West, student of law in the University of St. Andrews, have endeavoured in the ensuing pages to lay my statement before the public in a concise and business-like fashion. It is not my wish to achieve literary success, nor have I any desire by the graces of my style, or by the artistic ordering of my incidents, to throw a deeper shadow over the strange passages of which I shall... more...

THE BROWN HAND Every one knows that Sir Dominick Holden, the famous Indian surgeon, made me his heir, and that his death changed me in an hour from a hard-working and impecunious medical man to a well-to-do landed proprietor. Many know also that there were at least five people between the inheritance and me, and that Sir Dominick's selection appeared to be altogether arbitrary and whimsical. I can assure them, however, that they are quite... more...

A HYMN OF EMPIRE (Coronation Year, 1911) God save England, blessed by Fate,So old, yet ever young:The acorn isle from which the greatImperial oak has sprung!And God guard Scotland's kindly soil,The land of stream and glen,The granite mother that has bredA breed of granite men!God save Wales, from Snowdon's valesTo Severn's silver strand!For all the grace of that old raceStill haunts the Celtic land.And, dear old Ireland, God save you,And heal... more...


CHAPTER I. HOW THE BLACK SHEEP CAME FORTH FROM THE FOLD. The great bell of Beaulieu was ringing. Far away through the forest might be heard its musical clangor and swell. Peat-cutters on Blackdown and fishers upon the Exe heard the distant throbbing rising and falling upon the sultry summer air. It was a common sound in those parts—as common as the chatter of the jays and the booming of the bittern. Yet the fishers and the peasants raised... more...

CHAPTER I THE TWO NEEDFUL READJUSTMENTS It has been our fate, among all the innumerable generations of mankind, to face the most frightful calamity that has ever befallen the world. There is a basic fact which cannot be denied, and should not be overlooked. For a most important deduction must immediately follow from it. That deduction is that we, who have borne the pains, shall also learn the lesson which they were intended to convey. If we do... more...

CHAPTER I. THE SEARCH The subject of psychical research is one upon which I have thought more and about which I have been slower to form my opinion, than upon any other subject whatever. Every now and then as one jogs along through life some small incident happens which very forcibly brings home the fact that time passes and that first youth and then middle age are slipping away. Such a one occurred the other day. There is a column in that... more...

CHAPTER I THE COAST OF FRANCE I dare say that I had already read my uncle's letter a hundred times, and I am sure that I knew it by heart. None the less I took it out of my pocket, and, sitting on the side of the lugger, I went over it again with as much attention as if it were for the first time. It was written in a prim, angular hand, such as one might expect from a man who had begun life as a village attorney, and it was addressed to Louis... more...

THE BOER PEOPLE It is impossible to appreciate the South African problem and the causes which have led up to the present war between the British Empire and the Boer republics without some knowledge, however superficial, of the past history of South Africa. To tell the tale one must go back to the beginning, for there has been complete continuity of history in South Africa, and every stage has depended upon that which has preceded it. No one can... more...