Holmes follows a certain set of rules, those in which he thinks are morally sound, which may or may not run in accordance with the law. For example, he does not report Dr. Roylott's killing of his Stepdaughter and attempted murder of the other. He does not report this as he is dead and cannot now get punished, also it meant Helen Stoner was safe from him now and all reporting it would do would give Helen publicity that she didn't want or need. Also in 'Silver Blaze' he does not report the concealment of the horse as it was returned as promised. He makes his own judgement and believes in natural justice.
Watson is Holmes's only friend and is his chronicler to his weird and wonderful deeds. He is a doctor, and so he also must be very intelligent. His intelligence though is overshadowed each time by Holmes though. This is to show how much more intelligent Holmes of over the average man. He is also the stereotype of a gentleman of the age. So he is a representation of all gentlemen to compare Holmes too. He is modest and brave and also goes to crimes with Holmes. 'I shall want you help tonight' 'At what time? ' 'Ten will be early enough' 'I'll be at Baker street at 10' 'Very well. And, I say, Doctor!
There may be some little danger, so kindly bring you army revolver in you pocket. ' This conversation between Holmes and Watson shows that as he goes to all the crime scenes Holmes now expects him to go and Watson doesn't object even if it sounds as if it is going to be dangerous. This shows he is loyal to Holmes and will go out of his way to help him, which shows he is kind-natured. In the Sherlock Holmes stories there isn't really stereotype of a villain or victim. They are as varied in manner and personality as the cases themselves. In the 'Red-Headed League,' the villain in and infamous evil genius called John Clay.
A very well educated son of a Duke, having attended the greatest English schools and has even caught Sherlock Holmes out. He is also very snobby, even after he was arrested. Jabez Wilson was the victim in this story seems quite clueless and not all that bright and easily fooled. It does not seem as though he understands what he helped to uncover by him checking up on where the 'Red-Headed League' went. He is also very impressed. In the 'Speckled Band. ' The villain is Dr Grimsby Roylott, a burley man who had aggressive, violent and even murderous tendencies.
His appearance was very stereotypical of a criminal in the Victorian period. He killed his servant whilst living in India. He killed one of his Stepdaughters and attempted to kill his other just to get more money. The victim in this story is Helen Stoner, whose twin sister was murdered and was nearly murdered herself. She came to Holmes and she started to hear the same low him as her sister had told her about before she died. She is still in mourning from her sister's death and so dressed all in black with a black veil. In the 'Silver Blaze' there was not a villain as such, the horse itself committed the murder.
The horse only killed John Straker as self-defence as he tried to put him out of play. So John Straker, although was killed was still the villain. We know that he is sneaky and untrustworthy. The victims were both John Straker as he was killed and Colonel Ross as his horse was stolen. He only went to see Holmes as a last resort and believed, as he was not in the police, he was therefore not as capable or reliable. The structure of the stories stays very constant. You are introduced to the crime and new characters, this is the exposition, and Holmes then has a 'thinking period'. We are then given clues and Red Herrings.
Finally, all is revealed in the denouement. The exposition is the beginning of a story. Characters are introduced and you find out what has happened up until that point. In these stories the case is presented to Holmes, he then follows by making a hypothesis using what he has found out from his interview. His hypothesis isn't actually revealed, encase his suspicions are false. Arthur Conan Doyle doesn't reveal his hypothesis as it lets the reader think of their own ideas and also keep them interested. As if you knew who did the crime at the beginning then it would make the whole 'who dunnit' aspect void.
Instead it is revealed slowly throughout the book. He requires thinking about it. "This is quite a three pipe problem" This shows him working at his hypothesis by thinking over the facts and trying to draw some conclusions from them. The next stage of the stories is always the development of plot. This is the part where he goes to the place where it happened in order to test out what he suspects and also to look for new clues. In the 'Red-Headed League' he goes to Jabez Wilson's pawnbrokers to try and see what he thinks should be there, is there.
Also to look for more eventualities for the facts he knows and the new clues he discovers. In the 'Speckled Band' he goes to the Roylott house and looks around Helens room in order to discover how she could have been in danger. The difference with this story is that his hypothesis was incorrect and he discovers this when he there. We know this as he suspects that gypsies broke in and killed her, but when he is there he discovers that this would be impossible. This is why this section is vital to Holmes exploration. In the 'Silver Blaze' he goes to the stables where Silver Blaze was kept.
He, by this time has suspicion of what has happened so he looks out for things. "I cannot think how I came to overlook that. " "It was invisible, buried in the sand, I only found it because I was looking for it. " This shows he already has a good idea about what is going on in the beginning. He was looking for it, as he needed to see whether his suspicions were correct. He had to look for something to confirm his ideas in his hypothesis. All three of the books that I read and also the others are all littered with clues and hints for both Holmes to pick up and the reader to have a go themselves.
Some clues are obvious and others are subtler. For example, in the 'Speckled Band' you get a few clues to suspect Dr. Grimsby Roylott as not only is his manner criminal, we know that he will loose money if the Stoner women get married and as soon as Helen's sister gets engaged she is killed. "The total income, which at the time of the wife's death was little short of i?? 1100, is now through fall of agricultural prices not more that i?? 750. Each daughter can claim an income of i?? 250 when they marry, reducing this beauty to a mere pittance, while even one of them would cripple him to a certain extent.
" This shows that he really would not want them to get married. So this makes him suspicious as we know that Helen has just got engaged and she is hearing the noises that he sister did just before she died. But there are less subtle clues as to how he proposes on doing so. We know that the bell-pull isn't attached to anything and is just a hole in the ceiling. Also, that there is a vent between the rooms and a saucer of milk outside a locked safe, and the Dr. has a habit of collecting exotic animals. In retrospect, you can see that they are clues that a snake is killing them.
To solve this as you are reading though would require Holmes-like deductive skills. As well as clues there are Red Herrings also. A Red Herring is a misleading clue. It seem as though it is helping you forward in discovering it, but actually it is leading you in a completely wrong direction. The largest Red Herring is probably the 'Red-Headed League'. When we don't know anything about it we believe it to have deep and sinister ulterior motives. But it is actually just a made-up company to cover up for John Clay and his friends to dig the tunnel to the bank.