Conan Doyle Quotes

We've searched our database for all the quotes and captions related to Conan Doyle. Here they are! All 100 of them:

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When you have eliminated all which is impossible, then whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (The Case-Book of Sherlock Holmes (Sherlock Holmes, #9))
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It is a great thing to start life with a small number of really good books which are your very own.
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Arthur Conan Doyle
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There is nothing more deceptive than an obvious fact.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (The Boscombe Valley Mystery - a Sherlock Holmes Short Story)
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It has long been an axiom of mine that the little things are infinitely the most important.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (The Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes (Sherlock Holmes, #4))
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You see, but you do not observe.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (A Scandal in Bohemia (The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes, #1))
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The world is full of obvious things which nobody by any chance ever observes.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (The Hound of the Baskervilles (Sherlock Holmes, #5))
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It is a capital mistake to theorize before one has data. Insensibly one begins to twist facts to suit theories, instead of theories to suit facts.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (Sherlock Holmes)
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Mediocrity knows nothing higher than itself; but talent instantly recognizes genius.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (The Valley of Fear (Sherlock Holmes, #7))
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You have a grand gift for silence, Watson. It makes you quite invaluable as a companion.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (The Complete Sherlock Holmes)
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Education never ends, Watson. It is a series of lessons, with the greatest for the last.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (His Last Bow (Sherlock Holmes, #8))
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The love of books is among the choicest gifts of the gods.
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Arthur Conan Doyle
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Watson. Come at once if convenient. If inconvenient, come all the same.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (Adventure of the Creeping Man)
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My name is Sherlock Holmes. It is my business to know what other people do not know.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (The Adventure of the Blue Carbuncle - a Sherlock Holmes Short Story (The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes, #7))
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What you do in this world is a matter of no consequence. The question is what can you make people believe you have done.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (A Study in Scarlet (Sherlock Holmes, #1))
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A dog reflects the family life. Whoever saw a frisky dog in a gloomy family, or a sad dog in a happy one? Snarling people have snarling dogs, dangerous people have dangerous ones.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (The Case-Book of Sherlock Holmes (Sherlock Holmes, #9))
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Excellent!" I cried. "Elementary," said he.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (The Complete Sherlock Holmes)
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It may be that you are not yourself luminous, but that you are a conductor of light. Some people without possessing genius have a remarkable power of stimulating it.
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Arthur Conan Doyle
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I am a brain, Watson. The rest of me is a mere appendix.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (The Adventure of the Mazarin Stone)
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The game is afoot.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (Adventure of the Abbey Grange)
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To a great mind, nothing is little,' remarked Holmes, sententiously.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (A Study in Scarlet (Sherlock Holmes, #1))
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Women are naturally secretive, and they like to do their own secreting.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes)
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I am an omnivorous reader with a strangely retentive memory for trifles.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (The Adventure of the Lion's Mane)
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Life is infinitely stranger than anything which the mind of man could invent.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (A Case of Identity - a Sherlock Holmes Short Story (The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes #3))
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How often have I said to you that when you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth?
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Arthur Conan Doyle (The Sign of Four (Sherlock Holmes, #2))
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Populus me sibilat, at mihi plaudo Ipse domi stimul ac nummos contemplar in arca. (The public hiss at me, but I cheer myself when in my own house I contemplate the coins in my strong-box.)
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Arthur Conan Doyle (A Study in Scarlet (Sherlock Holmes, #1))
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There are always some lunatics about. It would be a dull world without them.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (The Red-Headed League (Sherlock Holmes))
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There is no scent so pleasant to my nostrils as that faint, subtle reek which comes from an ancient book.
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Arthur Conan Doyle
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My mind," he said, "rebels at stagnation. Give me problems, give me work, give me the most abstruse cryptogram or the most intricate analysis, and I am in my own proper atmosphere. I can dispense then with artificial stimulants. But I abhor the dull routine of existence. I crave for mental exaltation. That is why I have chosen my own particular profession, or rather created it, for I am the only one in the world.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (The Sign of Four (Sherlock Holmes, #2))
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Crime is common. Logic is rare. Therefore it is upon the logic rather than upon the crime that you should dwell.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (The Adventure of the Copper Beeches - a Sherlock Holmes Short Story (The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes #12))
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Is there any point to which you would wish to draw my attention?' 'To the curious incident of the dog in the night-time.' 'The dog did nothing in the night-time.' 'That was the curious incident,' remarked Sherlock Holmes.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (Silver Blaze (The Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes, #1))
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What one man can invent, another can discover.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (The Adventure of the Dancing Men (Stories from the return of Sherlock Holmes))
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A man always finds it hard to realize that he may have finally lost a woman's love, however badly he may have treated her.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (The Musgrave Ritual - a Sherlock Holmes Short Story (The Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes, #5))
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I wanted to end the world, but I'll settle for ending yours.
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Arthur Conan Doyle
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Evil indeed is the man who has not one woman to mourn him.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (The Hound of the Baskervilles (Sherlock Holmes, #5))
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Never trust to general impressions, my boy, but concentrate yourself upon details.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes (Sherlock Holmes, #3))
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It's quite exciting," said Sherlock Holmes, with a yawn.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (A Study in Scarlet (Sherlock Holmes, #1))
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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.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (The Complete Adventures of Sherlock Holmes)
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Where there is no imagination, there is no horror.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (A Study in Scarlet (Sherlock Holmes, #1))
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It is as impossible for man to demonstrate the existence of God as it would be for even Sherlock Holmes to demonstrate the existence of Arthur Conan Doyle.
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Frederick Buechner (Wishful Thinking: A Seeker's ABC)
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Work is the best antidote to sorrow, my dear Watson.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (The Return of Sherlock Holmes)
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The unexpected has happened so continually in my life that it has ceased to deserve the name.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (The Stark Munro Letters)
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I am somewhat exhausted; I wonder how a battery feels when it pours electricity into a non-conductor?
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Arthur Conan Doyle (The Adventure of the Dying Detective)
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No man burdens his mind with small matters unless he has some very good reason for doing so.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (A Study in Scarlet (Sherlock Holmes, #1))
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I consider that a man's brain originally is like a little empty attic, and you have to stock it with such furniture as you choose. A fool takes in all the lumber of every sort that he comes across, so that the knowledge which might be useful to him gets crowded out, or at best is jumbled up with a lot of other things, so that he has a difficulty in laying his hands upon it. Now the skillful workman is very careful indeed as to what he takes into his brain-attic. He will have nothing but the tools which may help him in doing his work, but of these he has a large assortment, and all in the most perfect order. It is a mistake to think that that little room has elastic walls and can distend to any extent. Depend upon it there comes a time when for every addition of knowledge you forget something that you knew before. It is of the highest importance, therefore, not to have useless facts elbowing out the useful ones.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (A Study in Scarlet (Sherlock Holmes, #1))
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As a rule, the more bizarre a thing is the less mysterious it proves to be. It is your commonplace, featureless crimes which are really puzzling, just as a commonplace face is the most difficult to identify.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes)
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I am the most incurably lazy devil that ever stood in shoe leather.
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Arthur Conan Doyle
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I followed you.' I saw no one.' That is what you may expect to see when I follow you.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (Die Teufelskralle (Sherlock Holmes Chronicles 24))
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There is nothing more to be said or to be done tonight, so hand me over my violin and let us try to forget for half an hour the miserable weather and the still more miserable ways of our fellowmen.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (The Five Orange Pips (The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes, #5))
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What the deuce is it to me?" he interrupted impatiently: "you say that we go round the sun. If we went round the moon it would not make a pennyworth of difference to me or to my work.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (A Study in Scarlet (Sherlock Holmes, #1))
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My life is spent in one long effort to escape from the commonplaces of existence. These little problems help me to do so.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (The Red-Headed League (The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes #2))
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No: I am not tired. I have a curious constitution. I never remember feeling tired by work, though idleness exhausts me completely." ~ Sherlock Holmes
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Arthur Conan Doyle (The Sign of Four (Sherlock Holmes, #2))
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My dear Watson," said [Sherlock Holmes], "I cannot agree with those who rank modesty among the virtues. To the logician all things should be seen exactly as they are, and to underestimate one's self is as much a departure from truth as to exaggerate one's own powers.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (The Adventure of the Greek Interpreter (The Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes, #9 ) (Sherlock Holmes))
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Now is the dramatic moment of fate, Watson, when you hear a step upon the stair which is walking into your life, and you know not whether for good or ill.
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Arthur Conan Doyle
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Come, Watson, come!" he cried. The game is afoot.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes (Sherlock Holmes, #3))
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Of all ghosts the ghosts of our old loves are the worst.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (The Memoirs Of Sherlock Holmes)
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Violence does, in truth, recoil upon the violent, and the schemer falls into the pit which he digs for another.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes (Sherlock Holmes, #3))
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The emotional qualities are antagonistic to clear reasoning.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (The Sign of Four (Sherlock Holmes, #2))
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presume nothing
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Arthur Conan Doyle (The Hound of the Baskervilles)
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I get in the dumps at times, and don't open my mouth for days on end. You must not think I am sulky when I do that. Just let me alone, and I'll soon be right.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (A Study in Scarlet (Sherlock Holmes, #1))
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Un sot trouve toujours un plus sot qui l'admire. A fool always finds a greater fool to admire him.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (A Study in Scarlet)
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Do you remember what Darwin says about music? He claims that the power of producing and appreciating it existed among the human race long before the power of speech was arrived at. Perhaps that is why we are so subtly influenced by it. There are vague memories in our souls of those misty centuries when the world was in its childhood.' That's a rather broad idea,' I remarked. One's ideas must be as broad as Nature if they are to interpret Nature,' he answered.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (A Study in Scarlet (Sherlock Holmes, #1))
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It is stupidity rather than courage to refuse to recognize danger when it is close upon you.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (The Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes (Sherlock Holmes, #4))
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Everything I have to say has already crossed your mind." "Then possibly my answer has crossed yours.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (The Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes (Sherlock Holmes, #4))
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It was easier to know it than to explain why I know it. If you were asked to prove that two and two made four, you might find some difficulty, and yet you are quite sure of the fact. ~ Sherlock Holmes
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Arthur Conan Doyle (A Study in Scarlet (Sherlock Holmes, #1))
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It is not my intention to be fulsome, but I confess that I covet your skull.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (The Hound of the Baskervilles (Sherlock Holmes, #5))
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You're not hurt, Watson? For God's sake, say that you are not hurt!" It was worth a wound -- it was worth many wounds -- to know the depth of loyalty and love which lay behind that cold mask. The clear, hard eyes were dimmed for a moment, and the firm lips were shaking. For the one and only time I caught a glimpse of a great heart as well as of a great brain. All my years of humble but single-minded service culminated in that moment of revelation.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (The Case-Book of Sherlock Holmes (Sherlock Holmes, #9))
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Data!data!data!" he cried impatiently. "I can't make bricks without clay.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (The Adventure of the Copper Beeches - a Sherlock Holmes Short Story (The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes #12))
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You know my method. It is founded upon the observation of trifles.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (The Boscombe Valley Mystery - a Sherlock Holmes Short Story)
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Everything comes in circles. [...] The old wheel turns, and the same spoke comes up. It's all been done before, and will be again.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (The Valley of Fear (Sherlock Holmes, #7))
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There's a light in a woman's eyes that speaks louder than words.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (The Hound of the Baskervilles (Sherlock Holmes, #5))
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Your life is not your own. Keep your hands off it.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (The Case-Book of Sherlock Holmes (Sherlock Holmes, #9))
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How sweet the morning air is! See how that one little cloud floats like a pink feather from some gigantic flamingo. Now the red rim of the sun pushes itself over the London cloud-bank. It shines on a good many folk, but on none, I dare bet, who are on a stranger errand than you and I. How small we feel with our petty ambitions and strivings in the presence of the great elemental forces of Nature!
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Arthur Conan Doyle (Sherlock Holmes: The Complete Novels and Stories, Volume I)
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When the spirits are low, when the day appears dark, when work becomes monotonous, when hope hardly seems worth having, just mount a bicycle and go out for a spin down the road, without thought on anything but the ride you are taking.
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Arthur Conan Doyle
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Anything is better than stagnation.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (The Case-Book of Sherlock Holmes (Sherlock Holmes, #9))
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Life, it turns out, is infinitely more clever and adaptable than anyone had ever supposed.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (The Case-Book of Sherlock Holmes (Sherlock Holmes, #9))
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By George!" cried the inspector. "How did you ever see that?" Because I looked for it.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (The Adventure of the Dancing Men (Stories from the return of Sherlock Holmes))
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I am not the law, but I represent justice so far as my feeble powers go.
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Arthur Conan Doyle
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It is a capital mistake to theorise before one has data.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes (Sherlock Holmes, #3))
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It is my belief, Watson, founded upon my experience, that the lowest and vilest alleys in London do not present a more dreadful record of sin than does the smiling and beautiful countryside.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (Sherlock Holmes: The Complete Novels and Stories, Volume I)
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If you had killed Watson, you would not have got out of this room alive.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (The Case-Book of Sherlock Holmes (Sherlock Holmes, #9))
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They say that genius is an infinite capacity for taking pains," he remarked with a smile. "It's a very bad definition, but it does apply to detective work.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (A Study in Scarlet (Sherlock Holmes, #1))
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From the first day I met her, she was the only woman to me. Every day of that voyage I loved her more, and many a time since have I kneeled down in the darkness of the night watch and kissed the deck of that ship because I knew her dear feet had trod it. She was never engaged to me. She treated me as fairly as ever a woman treated a man. I have no complaint to make. It was all love on my side, and all good comradeship and friendship on hers. When we parted she was a free woman, but I could never again be a free man.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (The Return of Sherlock Holmes (Sherlock Holmes, #6))
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It is quite a three pipe problem, and I beg that you won't speak to me for fifty minutes.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (The Red-Headed League (The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes #2))
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Once you eliminate the impossible, whatever remains, no matter how improbable, must be the truth.” - Sherlock Homes
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Arthur Conan Doyle
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The devil’s agents may be of flesh and blood, may they not?
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Arthur Conan Doyle (The Hound of the Baskervilles (Sherlock Holmes, #5))
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There are heroisms all round us waiting to be done.
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Arthur Conan Doyle
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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 his library, where he can get it if he wants it.
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Arthur Conan Doyle
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The chief proof of man's real greatness lies in his perception of his own smallness.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (The Sign of Four (Sherlock Holmes, #2))
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The larger crimes are apt to be the simpler, for the bigger the crime, the more obvious, as a rule, is the motive.
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Arthur Conan Doyle
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Wir sind gewohnt dass die Menschen verhΓΆhnen was sie nicht verstehen. (Goethe)β€”We are used to see that Man mocks what he never comprehends.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (The Sign of Four (Sherlock Holmes, #2))
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You have done all the work in this business. I get a wife out of it, Jones gets the credit, pray what remains for you?" "For me," said Sherlock Holmes, "there still remains the cocaine bottle.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (The Sign of Four (Sherlock Holmes, #2))
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I cannot live without brainwork. What else is there to live for? Stand at the window here. Was ever such a dreary, dismal, unprofitable world? See how the yellow fog swirls down the street and drifts across the duncoloured houses. What could be more hopelessly prosaic and material?
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Arthur Conan Doyle (The Complete Sherlock Holmes)
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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
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Arthur Conan Doyle (The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes)
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You would not call me a marrying man, Watson?" "No, indeed!" "You'll be interested to hear that I'm engaged." "My dear fellow! I congrat-" "To Milverton's housemaid." "My dear Holmes!" "I wanted information, Watson.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (The Return of Sherlock Holmes (Sherlock Holmes, #6))
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Dr. Watson's summary list of Sherlock Holmes's strengths and weaknesses: "1. Knowledge of Literature: Nil. 2. Knowledge of Philosophy: Nil. 3. Knowledge of Astronomy: Nil. 4. Knowledge of Politics: Feeble. 5. Knowledge of Botany: Variable. Well up in belladonna, opium, and poisons generally. Knows nothing of practical gardening. 6. Knowledge of Geology: Practical but limited. Tells at a glance different soils from each other. After walks has shown me splashes upon his trousers, and told me by their colour and consistence in what part of London he had received them. 7. Knowledge of Chemistry: Profound. 8. Knowledge of Anatomy: Accurate but unsystematic. 9. Knowledge of Sensational Literature: Immense. He appears to know every detail of every horror perpetrated in the century. 10. Plays the violin well. 11. Is an expert singlestick player, boxer, and swordsman. 12. Has a good practical knowledge of British law.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (A Study in Scarlet (Sherlock Holmes, #1))
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I say, Watson,’ he whispered, β€˜would you be afraid to sleep in the same room as a lunatic, a man with softening of the brain, an idiot whose mind has lost its grip?’ β€˜Not in the least,’ I answered in astonishment. β€˜Ah, that’s lucky,’ he said, and not another word would he utter that night.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (The Valley of Fear (Sherlock Holmes, #7))
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What a lovely thing a rose is!" He walked past the couch to the open window and held up the drooping stalk of a moss-rose, looking down at the dainty blend of crimson and green. It was a new phase of his character to me, for I had never before seen him show any keen interest in natural objects. "There is nothing in which deduction is so necessary as religion," said he, leaning with his back against the shutters. "It can be built up as an exact science by the reasoner. Our highest assurance of the goodness of Providence seems to me to rest in the flowers. All other things, our powers, our desires, our food, are all really necessary for our existence in the first instance. But this rose is an extra. Its smell and its color are an embellishment of life, not a condition of it. It is only goodness which gives extras, and so I say again that we have much to hope from the flowers.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (The Naval Treaty - a Sherlock Holmes Short Story)
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There's an east wind coming all the same, such a wind as never blew on England yet. It will be cold and bitter, Watson, and a good many of us may wither before its blast. But it's God's own wind none the less and a cleaner, better stronger land will lie in the sunshine when the storm has cleared.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (His Last Bow (Sherlock Holmes, #8))
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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.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes, Volume 1)
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That any civilized human being in this nineteenth century should not be aware that the earth traveled round the sun appeared to me to be such an extraordinary fact that I could hardly realize it. β€˜You appear to be astonished,’ he said, smiling at my expression of surprise. β€˜Now that I do know it I shall do my best to forget it.’ β€˜To forget it!’ β€˜You see,’ he explained, β€˜I consider that a man’s brain is like a little empty attic, and you have to stock it with such furniture as you choose. A fool takes in all the lumber of every sort that he comes across, so that the knowledge which might be useful to him gets crowded out, or at best is jumbled up with a lot of other things, so that he has difficulty in laying his hands upon it. Now the skilful workman is very careful indeed as to what he takes into his brain-attic. He will have nothing but the tools which may help him in doing his work, but of these he has a large assortment, and all in most perfect order. It is a mistake to think that that that little room has elastic walls and can distend to any extent. Depend upon it there comes a time when for every addition of knowledge you forget something that you knew before. It is of the highest importance, therefore, not to have useless facts elbowing out the useful ones.’ β€˜But the Solar System!’ I protested. β€˜What the deuce is it to me?’ he interrupted impatiently: β€˜you say that we go round the sun. If we went round the moon it would not make a pennyworth of difference to me or to my work.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (A Study in Scarlet (Sherlock Holmes, #1))