Created in 1887 by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, Sherlock Holmes is perhaps the world’s most famous fictional detective. He possesses a brilliant mind and a talent for using it to solve crime.
The character’s wit and deduction skills have captured the hearts of generations of readers. Even now, he enjoys massive popularity, inspiring many modern adaptations and re-imaginings, but always present is his logical thought process and hunger for answers.
Best Sherlock Holmes Quotes from the Original Series
While famous Sherlock Holmes quotes originated from film or TV adaptations, the best ones are often from the original creator. Below are some of the best Sherlock Holmes quotes taken from Doyle’s canonical work.
Best Sherlock Holmes Quotes from the Movies and Series
Doyle’s work has spawned a multitude of reimaginings, adaptations, and imitations. Some of them fell flat, but others have become successful ventures. Below are some of the best quotes taken from TV and film.
What Does Sherlock Always Say to Watson?
“Elementary, my dear Watson” is the most recognizable phrase attributed to Sherlock Holmes. However, this phrase never appeared in any of the canonical stories and novels.
Instead, the phrase was incorrectly assumed to be something Sherlock uttered since he often remarked that his deductions were “elementary.” He also often used the phrase “my dear Watson” in at least two-thirds of the original stories. The closest he comes to saying “Elementary, my dear Watson” is in The Adventure of the Crooked Man.
“Excellent!” I cried.
“Elementary,” said he.
Sherlock does say the phrase, “exactly, my dear Watson” three times in the official canon. The earliest that the misattributed phrase was used was in P. G. Wodehouse’s Psmith, Journalist which was in no way about Doyle or his detective creation. It was used again in The Return of Sherlock Holmes, the first-ever Sherlock Holmes sound film. It escalated from then on until it became what it is today: a non-canonical phrase widely attributed to the fictional detective.
Reading Sherlock Holmes
If you haven’t experienced any of Sherlock’s adventures yet, I suggest starting with The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes. It’s a collection of short stories featuring the famous detective. While the novels are great, these shorts are easier to digest and still do a good job of introducing you to the detective.
It’s not necessary to read his adventures in order. Though some stories reference past cases, there’s not much connecting the stories, other than the principal characters. If you do decide to read Sherlock Holmes stories, I hope you enjoy them as much as I did!
Cole is a blog writer and aspiring novelist. He has a degree in Communications and is an advocate of media and information literacy and responsible media practices. Aside from his interest in technology, crafts, and food, he’s also your typical science fiction and fantasy junkie, spending most of his free time reading through an ever-growing to-be-read list. It’s either that or procrastinating over actually writing his book. Wish him luck!