Don't relegate him - elevate him.

As anyone worth their salt knows, May 22nd was Conan Doyle's birthday. Once again there was a clutch of posts on social media clamouring for it to be seen as Annual Sherlock Holmes Day. I cannot fathom why people seek to belittle Holmes's creator - whether or not they see it that way.

It is a well known fact that Arthur Conan Doyle's attitude waxed and waned towards his most famous creation. He killed Holmes in 1893 precisely because he felt trapped by him. Even though, in my opinion, he made some kind of peace with Holmes towards the end of his life, there can be little doubt that he would have struggled to raise a smile at the idea of his birthday becoming associated with (or obscured by) a creation he rated as lower than his historical works and his works in Spiritualism.

How Conan Doyle rated his work

Based on my researches (and irrespective of what you may think of the subject) Conan Doyle would have been far happier if his birthday had become linked with Spiritualism - as long as his reputation, and other endeavours, did not, in turn, obscure the subject which he saw as the most important issue for humanity.

As a fan of both the man and his works, I cannot understand anyone that wants, essentially, to erase him in favour of anything he produced.

May 22nd is Annual Arthur Conan Doyle Day. The day we honour the man rather than his creations. The man who gave us all of it.

Don't relegate him - elevate him.

Written by Alistair Duncan Buy my books here

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