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holmes, sherlock

holmes, sherlock in Culture

Holmes, Sherlock definition


A fictional English detective, created by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. Holmes's extraordinary powers of memory, observation, and deduction enable him to solve mysteries and identify criminals in cases that leave all other detectives baffled. His companion is Dr. Watson, who records his exploits. Holmes is often mistakenly quoted as saying, “Elementary, my dear Watson.”

Note: Figuratively, any shrewd detective can be called Sherlock Holmes, or simply Sherlock.
The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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Encyclopedia Article for holmes, sherlock

Holmes, Sherlock

fictional character created by the Scottish writer Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. The prototype for the modern mastermind detective, Holmes first appeared in Conan Doyle's A Study in Scarlet, published in Beeton's Christmas Annual of 1887. As the world's first and only "consulting detective," he pursued criminals throughout Victorian and Edwardian London, the south of England, and continental Europe. Although the fictional detective had been anticipated by Edgar Allan Poe's C. Auguste Dupin and Emile Gaboriau's Monsieur Lecoq, Holmes made a singular impact upon the popular imagination and has become the most enduring character of detective fiction.

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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