The short story books, novels and plays written by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle are still famous in the modern era especially the one written on the character of Sherlock Holmes who along with his assistant Dr. Watson solved many mysteries on the basis of his sharp mind, wit and intelligence. These mystery stories were very famous and Arthur wrote some of them while practising as a doctor. Sherlock Holmes was a character created by Arthur by looking at his mentor in medical school Dr. Joseph Bell and the sketch of him was prepared by the ‘Strand’ magazine illustrator, Sidney Paget who drew his image by getting inspiration from her brother who was a handsome man. The two references ‘The Sir Arthur Conan Doyle Literary Estate’ and Arthur Conan Doyle. Encyclopedia Britannica give us an insight of his life and literary works. Did the character of Sherlock Holmes ,the great detective become famous worldwide? is the question which is answered in the paper.
Sir Arthur Conan Doyle was born in Scotland and belonged to a rich Irish Catholic family. His father was an artist and his mother was adept in telling stories which was the influencing factor for him to achieve great heights in his literary works. Some of his famous books are ‘The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes’, ‘A Study in Scarlet’ etc. and ‘A Scandal in Bohemia’, ‘The Final Problem’ etc. are his short stories (The Sir Arthur Conan Doyle Literary Estate. n.d.). Sir Arthur published his short story ‘The Mystery of Sasassa Valley’ in a magazine known as ‘Chamber’s journal’ in Edinburgh. He as well published his second story, ‘The American Tale’ in the same year. The book ‘A Study in Scarlet’ was the one which launched the famous Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson characters. This was the beginning of these characters gaining recognition worldwide. Apart from being a writer, he was as well a sportsperson, a political campaigner, an advocator of justice, an architect and a spiritualist all rolled into one. His books on Sherlock Holmes have been made into films as well (The Sir Arthur Conan Doyle Literary Estate. n.d.).
Sir Arthur Conan Doyle was the second of ten children born to Charles Altamont and Mary Foley. His father was an artist and his mother a good story teller. He studied the Jesuit religious order for seven years in England in the year 1868 and for one more year in Austria. From here he went and studied in Stonyhurst College where the environment was unfriendly and students were given corporal punishment. It was here that he discovered his hidden talent of storytelling (Biography.com Editors. 2019). Arthur completed his M.B.B.S from the University of Edinburgh as well as M.D. due to the influence of Dr. Bryan Charles Waller, who was a tenant in his house (Wilson, P. K. 2019).
Arthur obtained his medical degree from the Edinburgh University in 1881and made a drawing in which he portrayed himself as getting the diploma which had a caption saying “Licensed to Kill”. He was posted as a medical officer in a steamer boat called “Mayumba”, which travelled from Liverpool to Africa’s west coast. Since he did not like Africa, he quit the job and practiced medicine with an unethical doctor which almost made him bankrupt. Therefore, he left for Portsmouth to commence his own practice which was a little shaky in the beginning but picked up later on. Arthur continued his writings while practising as a doctor. In 1891, he contracted the flu which made him hover between life and death and this was the time he decided that he would leave his medical career and concentrate on his literary one (The Sir Arthur Conan Doyle Literary Estate. n.d.).
His first book was ‘The Mystery of Sasassa Valley’ which was published in a magazine called the ‘Chamber’s Journal’ in Edinburgh. Subsequently in the third year of his medical school, he went as a surgeon on a ship called the ‘Hope’ and enjoyed the adventures on sea. This inspired him to write a book named ‘Captain of the Pole Star.’ ‘A Tangled Skein’ was another book written by him in 1886, which was later published in Beeton’s Christmas