Detective Genre Features in The Speckled Band

Topics: Sherlock Holmes

The following sample essay is about the characterization of Holmes in the detective genre. To read the introduction, body, and conclusion of the essay, scroll down.

His most famous feature is his intelligence, which he demonstrates very modestly. He always presents his deductions with an air of understatement: ‘There is no mystery, my dear madam…. ‘ As Holmes listens to Helen Stoner’s story in ‘The Speckled Band’, the same quiet confidence and ability to encourage and reassure in very few words is apparent.

He talks very little compared to his visitor, but has the ability to listen completely attentively to every detail of her description, ‘Leaning back in his chair with his eyes closed… ‘

Sherlock Holmes tends to have a great deal of concentration and imagination as he questions Helen Stoner and contemplates the situation, as he has a fair idea of the real events of the story before he leaves his room. The detective work is done within his mind and his visit to the scene of the crime is really only to confirm what he has already deduced.

Sherlock Holmes is a hard working, observant character, unlike the police, the public had lost faith in the police and it was down to Doyle to make Sherlock Holmes a detective who could actually continuously unravel clues, solve crimes and build public hope.

The Detective Genre

The other great appeal of the compilation of stories is that the modern reader sees a real historical period of living, which has now passed by.

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As readers like to see life in olden days, Doyle represents this brilliantly in his stories. In ‘The Speckled Band’ there is the reference to the dogcart in which Victorians travelled around in, to the attire of Helen Stoner when she visits Holmes.

‘She raised her veil as she spoke and we could see that she was indeed in a pitiable state of agitation, her face all drawn and gray, with restless, frightened eyes, like those of some hunted animal. Her features and figure were those of a woman of thirty, but her hair was shot with premature gray, and her expression was weary and haggard. ‘ The reference to the veil shows the audience that something as gone wrong, as people only tend to wear veils either if your getting married or if someone has died as its tradition to wear such garments.

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Detective Genre Features in The Speckled Band. (2019, Dec 05). Retrieved from

Detective Genre Features in The Speckled Band
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