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THE ADVENTURE OF THE EMPTY HOUSE It was in the spring of the year 1894 that all London was interested, and the fashionable world dismayed, by the murder of the Honourable Ronald Adair under most unusual and inexplicable circumstances. The public has already learned those particulars of the crime which came out in the police investigation, but a good deal was suppressed upon that occasion, since the case for the prosecution was so overwhelmingly... more...

CHAPTER I. A MIDNIGHT SUMMONS "When did you last hear from Nayland Smith?" asked my visitor. I paused, my hand on the syphon, reflecting for a moment. "Two months ago," I said; "he's a poor correspondent and rather soured, I fancy." "What—a woman or something?" "Some affair of that sort. He's such a reticent beggar, I really know very little about it." I placed a whisky and soda before the Rev. J. D. Eltham, also sliding the tobacco... more...

TO INTRODUCE MR. JULIUS ROHSCHEIMER "There's half a score of your ancestral halls," said Julius Rohscheimer, "that I could sell up to-morrow morning!" Of the quartet that heard his words no two members seemed quite similarly impressed. The pale face of Adeler, the great financier's confidential secretary, expressed no emotion whatever. Sir Richard Haredale flashed contempt from his grey eyes—only to veil his scorn of the man's vulgarity... more...

CHAPTER I. I GO TO STYLES The intense interest aroused in the public by what was known at the time as "The Styles Case" has now somewhat subsided. Nevertheless, in view of the world-wide notoriety which attended it, I have been asked, both by my friend Poirot and the family themselves, to write an account of the whole story. This, we trust, will effectually silence the sensational rumours which still persist. I will therefore briefly set down... more...

CHAPTER I THE SERMON THAT WAS NEVER PREACHED A little party of men and women on bicycles were pushing their machines up the steep ascent which formed the one street of Feldwick village. It was a Sunday morning, and the place was curiously empty. Their little scraps of gay conversation and laughter—they were men and women of the smart world—seemed to strike almost a pagan note in a deep Sabbatical stillness. They passed the wide open... more...


ONE — The Absence of Mr Glass THE consulting-rooms of Dr Orion Hood, the eminent criminologist and specialist in certain moral disorders, lay along the sea-front at Scarborough, in a series of very large and well-lighted french windows, which showed the North Sea like one endless outer wall of blue-green marble. In such a place the sea had something of the monotony of a blue-green dado: for the chambers themselves were ruled throughout by... more...

AT CHAUDIÈRE'S In the days when New Orleans still claimed distinction as the only American city without trolleys, sky-scrapers, or fast trains—was it yesterday? or the day before?—there was a dingy, cobwebbed café in an arcade off Camp Street which was well-beloved of newspaperdom; particularly of that wing of the force whose activities begin late and end in the small hours. "Chaudière's," it was called, though... more...

Mr. Sherlock Holmes Mr. Sherlock Holmes, who was usually very late in the mornings, save upon those not infrequent occasions when he was up all night, was seated at the breakfast table. I stood upon the hearth-rug and picked up the stick which our visitor had left behind him the night before. It was a fine, thick piece of wood, bulbous-headed, of the sort which is known as a "Penang lawyer." Just under the head was a broad silver band nearly an... more...

CHAPTER I GENTLEMAN GEOFF'S BILLIE Kearn Thode mounted his pinto and rode out of the courtyard of the Baggott Hotel and down the Calle Rivera under a seething tropic sun. Limasito's principal street was well-nigh deserted in the lethargy of the noon-day siesta, but the flower-market was a riotous blaze of color in the glistening white plaza, from which radiated broad vistas of fantastically painted adobe and soberer concrete, ending in a soft... more...

CHAPTER I THE NIGHT OF THE STORM It had been a magnificent afternoon, so wonderful that Leslie hated to break the spell. Reluctantly she unrolled herself from the Indian blanket, from which she emerged like a butterfly from a cocoon, draped it over her arm, picked up the book she had not once opened, and turned for a last, lingering look at the ocean. A lavender haze lay lightly along the horizon. Nearer inshore the blue of sea and sky was... more...