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Monday, May 22, 2023

'It's an obvious fact'


“A man should keep his little brain attic stocked with all the furniture that he is likely to use, and the rest he can put away in the lumber-room of his library, where he can get it if he wants it.” –Arthur Conan Doyle

Born in Scotland on this date in 1859, Doyle was noted for his "good use of his brain's furnishings" and as his iconic literary creation Sherlock Holmes once commented, “There is nothing more deceptive than an obvious fact.”  

Originally a physician (I always thought that he resembled what I imagined Holmes' sidekick Dr. Watson to look like), Doyle wrote his first Holmes book, A Study in Scarlet, in 1887.  It was the first of just four novels he wrote about Holmes and Dr. Watson, but he “filled out” the Holmes library with over 50 short stories featuring his famous detective.   
The Sherlock Holmes stories are generally considered milestones in the field of crime fiction.   The tales spawned many dozens (if not more) of uses of Holmes by other writers and in movies and television programs.  He also brought Deerstalker hats and Meerschaum pipes into vogue. 
Doyle, who died in 1930,          was a prolific writer whose other works included fantasy and science fiction, plays, romances, poetry and historical novels.  

Among the many sayings Doyle created and which have become part of the lexicon is, “Once you eliminate the impossible, whatever remains, no matter how improbable, must be the truth.”  Words to both solve mysteries and live by.

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