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The Use Setting To Help Create Mystery In The Hound Of The Baskervilles

1157 words - 5 pages

How does Doyle use setting to help create mystery in The Hound of the
Baskervilles?

Arthur Conan Doyle was born in Edinburgh on 22 May 1859. He died in
1893. His first book he published was when he was still a student. In
1885 he married Louise Hawkins. Sherlock Holmes made his first
appearance in a short novel called "A Study in Scarlet" which was
printed in 1887. He continues to write thrilling stories until he
realised he wanted to be known not just for Sherlock Holmes but wanted
to get involved in other projects. Readers were astonished when Doyle
finally killed off the famous detective when he was shoved off a cliff
in 1893 by his arch-nemis Professor Moriaty. Thousands of readers made
complaints and the once well known cult figure had been feared to be
gone forever! For a couple of years Conan Doyle avoided the reader's
complaints but Doyle eventually buckled under stress and wrote a book
called "The Hound of the Baskervilles". A story set before the tragic
ending of Sherlock Holmes.

This is a detective story with elements of a gothic story. The two
main characters are Sherlock Holmes and James Watson. In this story
Sherlock is in some ways the main character but most of the attention
is given to Watson as he tells the story.

The story starts in the pleasant setting of Holmes' Baker Street flat
were it is safe and cosy. The other setting in London is the
Northumberland Hotel. This is where Sir Henry and Doctor Mortimer are
staying. The first mystery is introduced here when one of Sir Henry's
boot goes missing.

"I put then both outside my door last night, and there was only one
this morning"

Conan Doyle creates a mysterious atmosphere here. London is a perfect
place because it is a heavily populated town and has many suspects
which the reader can try and guess who. The letter that Sir Henry
receives also adds to the mystery. Sherlock inspects the letter to
find each individual letter has been cut out from the Times Newspaper
and stuck on the sheet

"As you value your life or your reason to keep away from the moor".

In contrast with London the countryside, where Baskerville Hall and
the Moor are set, it has mystery as well. Like the death of Sir
Charles. The mystery here was that the death of Sir Charles because
no-one knows the real cause of his death whether it was natural or
supernatural.

Conan Doyle creates mystery here by using the weather and other
various methods to make the reader imagine the setting. Words like
'grim', 'gloomy', 'foggy' and 'dull' help to make the Moor more of a
mysterious atmosphere. Baskerville Hall is an isolated place with few
people that live in the same area.

Conan Doyle helps to establish the Hall and the Moor as places of
mystery before Watson and Sir Henry gets there because of the
information that Doctor Mortimer gives them. He tells them about the
death of Sir Hugo:

"Tore the throat out of Hugo Baskerville." He describes what happened
on...

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