"The Adventure of the Speckled Band" by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

During his time in Calcutta, exotic animals, particular species being sent to Stoke Moran, fascinated Dr Roylott. For the duration of Holmes’ investigation, a cheetah and baboon roam around the Manor House. Dr Roylott also allows Gypsies to wander freely over his grounds. Both these factors create tension for the reader, encouraging them to read more of this mystery. The reader is intrigued to discover if the cheetah, baboon and gypsies have a part to play in Helen Stoner’s horror, and also the murder of her twin sister.

And if so, then what it was they did.

The reader is also captivated by the description of Dr Roylott, when he meets with Sherlock Holmes. “A huge man” is illustrated to the reader, with a “hunting crop swinging in his hand” and a “resemblance to a fierce old bird of prey”. Together, these create tension between Dr Roylott and the reader. The link to a predator suggests he is strong, and aggressive.

With the description of him including the “hunting crop” and the “bird of prey”, the image of Dr Roylott is of a hunting, un-human like man, of a dark, mysterious past. The mystery is discovered in the “picture of ruin”, Stoke Moran, located in Surrey.

What Is The Speckled Band

The manor house is portrayed as a suspicious, dark, threatening house, by the use of Conan Doyle’s simile “two curving wings like those of a crab”. Crabs claws are strong and they have the potential to harm. Therefore the simile used implies that Stoke Moran is a dubious, shady house, situated in the middle of nowhere, with darkness surrounding it.

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The late at night and early morning setting of the discovery of the secret, adds to the suspense for the reader. “All was dark in the direction of the Manor House”. Through the darkness, things can come out of hidden places and alarm people in the area.

For example, while Sherlock Holmes and Watson are walking on Manor House grounds, “a hideous and distorted child” surprises them, and the reader, by jolting out of the bushes. The reader is intrigued to find out what this “distorted child” is, and within a few minutes of meeting this creature, the reader is reminded that roaming the ground is a Baboon. Conan Doyle’s technique of using darkness throughout The Speckled Band creates tension, and this appears to the readers’ senses. The imagery of the “distorted child” affects the reader’s sight, as they become more aware of their surroundings.

The “cat-like whine” appears the reader’s sound sense, as the reader can hear things, but they cannot see them, and this would make the reader nervous. Therefore they are encouraged to read further on. The things, such as “chill wind”, affect the readers’ touch sense. The blustery weather builds more suspense as it implies the image of a cold, dark, windy night. Almost as though something bad is about to happen. All of the senses are appealed to, and therefore the readers are able to feel more involved and believe they are included in the mystery.

Cite this page

"The Adventure of the Speckled Band" by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. (2019, Dec 05). Retrieved from https://paperap.com/paper-on-6903-the-speckled-band-2/

"The Adventure of the Speckled Band" by  Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
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