We're used to seeing Sherlock Holmes as a creature of logic vs. emotion. Watson called him "an automaton - a calculating machine" in The Sign of Four, and it was only many years later in "The Three Garridebs" that he noted, "For the one and only time I caught a glimpse of a great heart as well as of a great brain."
When it came to women - even the woman - Holmes was not moved:
"It was not that he felt any emotion akin to love for Irene Adler." [SCAN]
And Holmes reassured us that the softer emotion wasn't part of his character:
"I have never loved, Watson, but if I did, and if the woman I loved had met with such an end, I might act even as our lawless lion-hunter has done." [DEVI]
But that's not to say that love didn't play a part of the plots of some of the 60 stories. Unforunately, we must admit that there are very few "happy ending" love stories in the Sherlock Holmes. When we do encounter love in Canon, it usually has some sort of dark side to it - twisted, tested, tortured, or tragic in nature.
To mark the occasion of Valentine's Day, we're bringing you a quiz about love in the Canon. There are 10 questions; those who answer all questions correctly will be entered for a chance to win a Sherlockian collectible - a book, DVD or other piece of effluvium from our grab-bag.
If you're having trouble seeing the form on this page or in this email, simply click here for the direct link.
Bonus question, just for fun - no points awarded:
Roses are red, violets are blue... We can name the four Violets in the Canon; can you?
One winner will be chosen at random from entries submitted via the form by February 21, 2011. Winner will be contacted by email.
In the meantime, is there a love story in the Canon that has stuck with you, either because of its poignancy or tragic nature? Please share it as a comment.