Before You Read Sherlock Holmes

Step One:

Before you read the story, think about these questions. Then write a response to at least one of them on your blog.

1. Who are some famous detectives other than Sherlock Holmes? What makes them famous?
2. Have you ever had to solve a mystery of any kind?
3. If you are trying to solve a mystery, do you think it is the small points or the big ones that help you most?

After you have done that, read the posts made by your classmates. Comment on at least three of them.

Step Two:

Now look at these words. You are not responsible for learning them, but it will help you understand the text if you have an idea of what they mean.

outre passing the bounds of what is usual or considered proper; unconventional; bizarre
affaire de coeur a love affair
Pince-nez A type of eyeglasses
denouement the final resolution of the intricacies of a plot, as of a drama or novel, solution
Voila tout That's all!

Here are some other words and phrases that you will not need to learn, but again, they will be helpful as you read the story. The words are either very old and not used anymore or they aren't used in the same way in the US.

twopence an amount of money
shilling an amount of money
gasfitter a person who installs and repairs gas pipes and appliances
quinsy inflammation of the tonsils
hansom a horse-drawn vehicle for two people
muff a piece of clothing
frock-coat a piece of clothing
waistcoat a piece of clothing
gaiters a piece of clothing
clew old spelling of the word "clue"
superscription an address on a letter
bisulphate of baryta a chemical compound
cumbrous serving to obstruct or hinder; burdensome
coquettish flirtatious
panoply an impressive show of special clothes, decorations etc
purport the general meaning of what someone says
chaff (v) to mock, tease, or jest in a good-natured way

Back to A Case of Identity

Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License