Life is infinitely stranger than anything which the mind of man could invent. We would not dare to conceive the things which are really mere commonplaces of existence. If we could fly out of that window hand in hand, hover over this great city, gently remove the roofs, and and peep in at the queer things which are going on, the strange coincidences, the plannings, the cross-purposes, the wonderful chains of events, working through generations, and leading to the most outre results, it would make all fiction with its conventionalities and foreseen conclusions most stale and unprofitable.
To Sherlock Holmes she is always the woman. I have seldom heard him mention her under any other name. In his eyes she eclipses and predominates the whole of her sex. It was not that he felt any emotion akin to love for Irene Adler. All emotions, and that one particularly, were abhorrent to his cold, precise but admirably balanced mind. He was, I take it, the most perfect reasoning and observing machine that the world has seen.... And yet there was but one woman to him, and that woman was the late Irene Adler, of dubious and questionable memory.
Violence does, in truth, recoil upon the violent, and the schemer falls into the pit which he digs for another.
Circumstantial evidence is a very tricky thing. It may seem to point very straight to one thing, but if you shift your own point of view a little, you may find it pointing in an equally uncompromising manner to something entirely different.
A sandwich and a cup of coffee, and then off to violin-land, where all is sweetness and delicacy and harmony.
The stage lost a fine actor, even as science lost an acute reasoner, when [Holmes] became a specialist in crime.
To Sherlock Holmes she is always the woman. I have seldom heard him mention her under any other name.
This looks like one of those unwelcome social summonses which call upon a man either to be bored or to lie.
Well, well, my dear fellow, be it so. We have shared this same room for some years, and it would be amusing if we ended by sharing the same cell. (...).
He is not a bad fellow, though an absolute imbecile in his profession. He has one positive virtue. He is as brave as a bulldog and as tenacious as a lobster if he gets his claws upon anyone.
Well," he said, "I say, now, as I said then, that 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 this library, where he can get it if he wants it.
It is a capital mistake to theorise before one has data. Insensibly one begins to twist facts to suit theories, instead of theories to suit facts.
I think that I had better go, Holmes." "Not a bit, doctor. Stay where you are. I am lost without my Boswell.
Problems may be solved in the study which have baffled all those who have sought a solution by the aid of their senses. To carry the art, however, to its highest pitch, it is necessary that the reasoner should be able to use all the facts which have come to his knowledge; and this in itself implies, as you will readily see, a possession of all knowledge, which, even in these days of free education and encyclopaedias, is a somewhat rare accomplishment.
Draw your chair up, and hand me my violin, for the only problem which we have still to solve is how to while away these bleak autumnal evenings.
A sandwich and a cup of coffee, and then off to violin-land, where all is sweetness and delicacy and harmony, and there are no red-headed clients to vex us with their conundrums.
I confess that I have been as blind as a mole, but is is better to learn wisdom late than never to learn it at all.
Oh, a trusty comrade is always of use; and a chronicler still more so. My room at The Cedars is a double-bedded one.