The Use Setting to Help Create Mystery in The Hound of the Baskervilles

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


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 heavil...

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... convict brings suspicion as he fell on his neck.

Watson and Holmes mistake this man to be Sir Charles. As they look

closer they see that it is the convict in his clothes. Mystery is

introduced when Stapleton appears at the crime scene. This adds a

sense of mystery.

This novel in scene in some ways can be described as a Gothic Novel

because it has characteristics of one. For example it has a gloomy

setting, strange events, violence, mystery, super-natural and horror.

The gloomy setting is Baskerville Hall and the Moor. A strange event

would be the missing boot. This is also a detective story. For example

interesting setting, a crime to be solved. The interesting setting is

Baskerville Hall and the crime is the death of Sir Charles.

I conclude that Doyle creates mystery by using setting. He does this

by using methods like weather and descriptive words.

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