On July 2nd…

(Source: A Day by Day Chronology of Mr. Sherlock Holmes according to Zeisler and Christ, compiled by William S Dorn.)

July 2, 1894: John Hector MacFarlane was arrested by Lestrade. [NORW]

Illustration by Frederic Dorr Steele for Collier’s (1903)

It was a clang of the bell, followed instantly by heavy steps upon the stair. A moment later our old friend Lestrade appeared in the doorway. Over his shoulder I caught a glimpse of one or two uniformed policemen outside.

“Mr. John Hector McFarlane,” said Lestrade.

Our unfortunate client rose with a ghastly face.

“I arrest you for the wilful murder of Mr. Jonas Oldacre, of Lower Norwood.”

July 2, 1903: Professor Presbury was attacked by his own wolf hound, Roy. [CREE]

Illustration by Howard K. Elcock for The Strand Magazine (1923)

The Professor squatted down very deliberately just out of reach of the hound, and began to provoke it in every possible way. He took handfuls of pebbles from the drive and threw them in the dog’s face, prodded him with a stick which he had picked up, flicked his hands about only a few inches from the gaping mouth, and endeavoured in every way to increase the animal’s fury, which was already beyond all control. In all our adventures I do not know that I have ever seen a more strange sight than this impassive and still dignified figure crouching frog-like upon the ground and goading to a wilder exhibition of passion the maddened hound, which ramped and raged in front of him, by all manner of ingenious and calculated cruelty.

And then in a moment it happened! It was not the chain that broke, but it was the collar that slipped, for it had been made for a thick-necked Newfoundland. We heard the rattle of falling metal, and the next instant dog and man were rolling on the ground together, the one roaring in rage, the other screaming in a strange shrill falsetto of terror. It was a very narrow thing for the Professor’s life. The savage creature had him fairly by the throat, its fangs had bitten deep, and he was senseless before we could reach them and drag the two apart. It might have been a dangerous task for us, but Bennett’s voice and presence brought the great wolf-hound instantly to reason.

Chips says: I included the description of what the Professor had done to torture the wolfhound in the quote for a personal reason. I am an animal person. Cruelty to an animal to me is a death offense – not to the animal, but to the torturer. I have written, amongst other Sherlockian subjects, a Defense of the Speckled Band.  My cat was an abused rescued little one. Had I found the one who abused Sparky, the torturer would been tortured the same way. The Professor was lucky that I was not a local Justice of Peace in his district!

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