On May 7th…

May 7, 1902: Holmes confronted Sir Robert Norberton at the crypt. [SHOS]

Illustration by Frank Wiles for The Strand Magazine

Someone was walking in the chapel above. It was the firm, rapid step of one who came with a definite purpose, and knew well the ground upon which he walked. A light streamed down the stairs, and an instant later the man who bore it was framed in the Gothic archway. He was a terrible figure, huge in stature and fierce in manner. A large stable lantern which he held in front of him shone upwards upon a strong, heavily-moustached face and angry eyes, which glared round him into every recess of the vault, finally fixing themselves with a deadly stare upon my companion and myself.
“Who the devil are you?” he thundered. “And what are you doing upon my property?” Then, as Holmes returned no answer, he took a couple of steps forward and raised a heavy stick which he carried. “Do you hear me?” he cried. “Who are you? What are you doing here?” His cudgel quivered in the air.
But, instead of shrinking, Holmes advanced to meet him.
“I also have a question to ask you, Sir Robert,” he said in his sternest tone. “Who is this? And what is it doing here?”
He turned and tore open the coffin lid behind him. In the glare of the lantern I saw a body swathed in a sheet from head to foot, with dreadful, witch-like features, all nose and chin, projecting at one end, the dim glazed eyes staring from a discoloured and crumbling face.

Date information provided by the volume A Day-by-Day Chronology of Mr. Sherlock Holmes, according to Zeisler and Christ, compiled and edited by William S Dorn.


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