Sherlockian Shorts #2 – The Sign of the Four

A new series of posts, containing full spoilers, as I make my way once more through the complete canon, picking out points of interest and reflecting on my personal experience of the stories.

  • I generally forget that there are two “the’s” in the title and think of it as “The Sign of Four”.
  • Chapter 1 “The Science of Deduction” shares its name with Chapter 2 of “A Study in Scarlet”.
  • Watson saw signs of Holmes’ possible drug use in “A Study in Scarlet” but naively believed it to be impossible. Holmes now openly uses cocaine in front of Watson both at the beginning and end of this novella.
  • Watson’s war wound has mysteriously moved from his shoulder to his leg!
  • Watson has been to Australia – whether this was before he took his degree in 1878 or at some point between “A Study in Scarlet” and this adventure is unclear.

Previous posts in this series:

#1 – A Study in Scarlet

6 thoughts on “Sherlockian Shorts #2 – The Sign of the Four”

  1. It’s arguable that “The Sign of Four” is also a correct title – Wikipedia says it is an alternative, and searching on the BBC Genome website gives both versions for adaptations at different times.


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