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22 May 1859, Edinburgh M.D., Kt, KStJ, D.L., LL.D., Sportsman, Writer, Poet, Politician, Justicer, Spiritualist Crowborough, 7 July 1930

Raffles and Sherlock Holmes

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Raffles and Sherlock Holmes is an article published in The Bookman (US version) in march 1902.

Raffles and Sherlock Holmes

The Bookman (march 1902, p. 1)
The Bookman (march 1902, p. 2)

The theory advanced in the February BOOKMAN about the footprints of the Baskerville hound has brought to this office a number of letters, some of which contain theories far more ingenious than our own. Our chief regret in the matter is that we did not use the idea in the January number, no that we could have discussed some of the resulting letters in the February issue, bemuse we have an idea that the March installment of The Hound of the Baskervilles (these lines are being written on February 10) is going to tell us what it is all about. So we feel that we shall have to take leave of Sherlock Holmes for a little while and turn our attention to another gentleman with whom we occasionally hear him contrasted and compared.

The first time that Mr. E. W. Hornung put an apparent end to Raffles, the amateur cracksman, it was with a very obvious hesitation. The author seemed to be saying: "This chap seems to be becoming somewhat of a bore, so here goes. But as it may be convenient to bring him back, I may as well throw in the suggestion that although he undoubtedly jumped overboard he did not necessarily drown. It was much the same way with Sherlock Holmes. Dr. Doyle protested, and very loudly protested, that if he did not kill Sherlock Holmes, Sherlock Holmes would certainly kill him. But when it came to the point, and Professor Moriarty was made to throw the detective over the Alpine precipice, the author saw to it that nobody ever found the body. Nor did he throw out any hint that all the stories preceding the catastrophe had been told. On the contrary, in the course of former narratives, allusions were made to other stories, among them The Adventure of the Tired Captain and The Adventure of the Second Stain, with a promise that they should appear in print at a later and more favourable day. Raffles's second "finish," however, was very emphatic and decisive, and, consequently, it is with considerable curiosity that we await his next reappearance.