Fans of sophisticated crime fiction naturally have May 22nd as the birthday of Sir Arthur Ignatius Conan Doyle (1859 – 1930). Since 2014, this date also stands for International Sherlock Holmes Day. Reason enough to shed some light on this occasion with the following lines from the curious holidays from all over the world . What is it about?
Who started the international Sherlock Holmes Day?
Well, that fans of the British master detective and his creator were at work here seems somehow evident. But who exactly were the initiators of today’s Sherlock Holmes Day, I could not find out in the course of the research for the present article.
Although some of the common sources on the topic of strange world days list this occasion for today’s date, there is no concrete information about a possible author. Only the online forum sherlockforum.com lists a corresponding post from April 11, 2014 (see the list of further links below).
Why does Sherlock Holmes International Day of Honor fall on May 22nd?
According to this forum posting, the date of May 22nd was chosen for very obvious reasons. Because, as already indicated in the introduction, this also stands for the birthday of the Holmes inventor Sir Arthur Ignatius Conan Doyle (see also the other articles in the calendar of curious birthdays ). The British doctor and writer has published 56 short stories and four novels with the master detective and his assistant Watson over the years.
In keeping with the Anglo-Saxon tradition of always using the date of birth and not the date of death for such special days, this choice seems quite reasonable. On the other hand, it should also be noted that the matter does not seem as clear as one might suspect at first glance. Because if you continue to follow these traces, you will find at least two other, alternative dates here:
- The literature blog literaturjunkie.wordpress.com locates International Sherlock Holmes Day on January 6th. If I understand the matter correctly, this assumption relates to the presumed (fictional) date of birth of Sherlock Holmes, which fans of the stories have been celebrating as their own curious holiday for years. This is, however, an interpretation, because Arthur Conan Doyle himself never specifically commented on it in the stories (see also the list of further links below or the calendar collection of literary holidays).
- The reference work The 2009 Weird & Wacky Holiday Marketing Guide (2009) by Ginger Carter-Marks mentions March 6th (p. 21), but also does not give a specific reason. In this respect, this seems to me to be a relatively arbitrary setting.
- The third variant is December 2nd, which some Holmes fans consider the actual (fictitious) date of birth of the detective character. This temporal location appears to be justified in the fact that this date is also the birthday of the physician Dr. Joseph Bell (1837 – 1911), who – also according to statements by Doyle himself – was one of the real role models in the creation of the fictional character Sherlock Holmes. After all, the Scottish surgeon, pediatrician and military doctor and founder of forensics was both a lecturer and later Doyle’s superior.
So all in all it’s a somewhat tricky story, but of course it goes perfectly with the Holmes novels in terms of theme.
And for those of you who can’t do anything with it, May 22nd with the day of the swimming master in Germany, also celebrated today , the World Goth Day or the American National Buy a Musical Instrument Day, National Vanilla Pudding Day or English. National Toothpaste Tube Day a whole range of calendar alternatives.
In this sense: Happy Birthday Sir Arthur Ignatius Conan and a great International Sherlock Holmes Day to all of you.
Sherlock Holmes Quotes
1. “It’s a wicked world, and when a clever man turns his brain to crime it is the worst of all.”
2. “It’s every man’s business to see justice done.”
3. “Mediocrity knows nothing higher than itself; but talent instantly recognizes genius.”
4. “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.”
5. “The game is afoot.” — Arthur Conan Doyle, The Adventure of the Abbey Grange
6. “Crime is common. Logic is rare. Therefore it is upon the logic rather than upon the crime that you should dwell.”
7. “Oh, hell! What does that matter?! So we go around the sun! If we went around the moon or round and round the garden like a teddy bear, it wouldn’t make any difference! All that matters to me is the work! Without that, my brain rots. Put that in your blog — or better still, stop inflicting your opinions on the world!” — Sherlock BBC series (spoken by Benedict Cumberbatch)
8. “I never make exceptions. An exception disproves the rule.”
9. “To a great mind, nothing is little.” — Arthur Conan Doyle, A Study in Scarlet
10. “A good detective knows that every task, every interaction, no matter how seemingly banal, has the potential to contain multitudes.” — Elementary CBS Series (spoken by Jonny Lee Miller)
11. “Dear God. What is it like in your funny little brains? It must be so boring.” —Sherlock BBC Series (spoken by Benedict Cumberbatch)
12. “Watson! Come at once if convenient. If inconvenient, come all the same.”
13. “Watson. Come at once if convenient. If inconvenient, come all the same.” — Arthur Conan Doyle, The Adventure of the Creeping Man
14. “My life is spent in one long effort to escape from the commonplaces of existence. These little problems help me to do so.”
15. “The devil’s due a soul, I’d say.” — Sherlock Holmes 2009 Film Adaptation (spoken by Robert Downey Jr.)
16. “It is stupidity rather than courage to refuse to recognize danger when it is close upon you.”
17. “Work is the best antidote of sorrow, my dear Watson.”
18. “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.”
19. “Where there is no imagination, there is no horror.”
20. “Life is infinitely stranger than anything which the mind of man could invent.”
21. “But it is better to learn wisdom late than never learn it at all.”
22. “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.” — Arthur Conan Doyle, A Scandal in Bohemia
23. “You see, but you do not observe.”
24. “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.”
25. “Violence does, in truth, recoil upon the violent, and the schemer falls into the pit which he digs for another.”
26. “Education never ends, Watson. It is a series of lessons with the greatest for the last.”
27. “Crime is common. Logic is rare.” — Arthur Conan Doyle, The Adventure of the Copper Beeches
28. “It is a mistake to confound strangeness with mystery.”
29. “Ive always assumed that love is a dangerous disadvantage. Thank you for the final proof.” — Sherlock BBC Series (spoken by Benedict Cumberbatch)
30. “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.” — Arthur Conan Doyle, The Sign of the Four
31. “When you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth?” — Arthur Conan Doyle, The Sign of Four
32. “Never trust to general impressions, my boy, but concentrate yourself upon details.”
33. “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.”
34. “How often have I said to you that when you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth?”
35. “My name is Sherlock Holmes. It is my business to know what other people do not know.” — Arthur Conan Doyle, The Adventure of the Blue Carbuncle
36. “There is nothing more deceptive than an obvious fact.”
37. “But love is an emotional thing, and whatever is emotional is opposed to that true cold reason which I place above all things.”
38. “Of all ruins, that of a noble mind is the most deplorable.”
39. “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.”
40. “To a great mind, nothing is little.”
41. “You have a grand gift for silence, Watson. It makes you quite invaluable as a companion.” — Arthur Conan Doyle, The Man with the Twisted Lip
42. “It has long been an axiom of mine that the little things are infinitely the most important.”
43. “You see, but you do not observe.” — Arthur Conan Doyle, A Scandal in Bohemia