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Holmes's science

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  • Tim Symonds
    Interesting link re. Holmes s science - http://ignisart.com/camdenhouse/scholars/FORENSIC.pdf Excerpt - SHERLOCK HOLMES: The Education of the World s First
    Message 1 of 1 , Dec 26, 2013

      Interesting link re. Holmes's science - http://ignisart.com/camdenhouse/scholars/FORENSIC.pdf


      Excerpt -


      SHERLOCK HOLMES: The Education of the World's First Forensic Scientist

      By G. Norton, Esquire a.k.a. Carl L. Heifetz

      Private Consulting Microbiologist

      Published in The Hounds Collection Vol. 10, May 2005, p 66-72


      There is ample published material to support the assertion that Sherlock Holmes was the

      world's first forensic scientist or criminalist. He was the very first individual to apply the

      Methods of scientists to the solution of criminal cases and other mysteries.1 In this

      treatise, I will attempt to show how his education and life experiences led to this

      evolutionary process.

      Several books and articles attribute the invention of forensic science to Mr. Sherlock

      Holmes, often attributed to the Literary Agent, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. According to

      Richard Safferstein, Ph.D., "Sir Arthur Conan Doyle had a considerable influence on

      popularizing scientific crime-detection methods through his [sic] fictional character

      Sherlock Holmes. It was Holmes who first applied the newly developing principles of

      serology (see Chapter 12), fingerprinting, firearm identification, and questioned

      document-examination long before their value was recognized and accepted by real life

      criminal investigators."2 As support, Dr. Safferstein quotes the text at the beginning of

      Study in Scarlet (STUD), in which Mr. Holmes expounds upon the importance of the

      "Sherlock Holmes Test for Blood" as the "most practical medico-legal discovery for


      In his 1983 book, the editor, Samuel M. Berger, Ph.D., BSI, included an entire chapter

      that identifies Sherlock Holmes’ contributions to the development of forensic science. Dr.

      Berger discussed the Sherlock Holmes Test for blood in relation to tests that were

      available during that era. He concludes with the statement: "Perhaps the story A Study in

      Scarlet by Conan Doyle gave impetus to the development of improved methods in blood

      identification." 3 I'm certain that we would all concur in that claim. Articles by chemists

      James F. O’Brien 4 and Christine L. Huber 5 may be consulted for in depth evaluations of

      the revolutionary blood test devised by Sherlock Holmes.

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