THE SHERLOCK HOLMES' MUSEUM
TEXT FOR REPORT AND DISCUSSION
In the 1880s a young doctor sat waiting for new patients who never came. To pass the time, he wrote stories about a man who was very good at solving crimes. These stories were so popular that the doctor decided to give up medicine and become a writer instead. The doctor was Arthur Conan Doyle and his creation was Sherlock Holmes.
Holmes and his equally famous friend Doctor Watson shared rooms at 221b Baker Street.
In the comfort and warmth of this place hundreds of crimes have been solved. Their landlady was the long-suffering Mrs Hudson. She had to put up with strange visitors, revolver practice indoors, chemical experiments and late-time violin playing.
In 1990, a museum was at last opened at 221b Baker Street, though it should have happened long ago. After all, 221b Baker Street is the world's most famous address and people have been writing to it for more than 100 years.
In The Sherlock Holmes' Museum you step back a hundred years in time. It is unique. There is no modern virtual reality, but it is all virtually real. There are no horrors, no mummies or hidden corpses, no wax figures... Even so, the atmosphere of this quiet house is electric. You have a feeling as if the great detective had just left the room for a moment with Dr Watson, and Mrs Hudson is somewhere in the backrooms, and you'll see her entering the room with a tray of tea cups.
Everything in the museum reminds us of the stories we know so well. It is filled with things which Holmes and Watson would have had — Holmes' violin, his deerstalker and pipe, the Persian slipper in which he kept his tobacco, unanswered letters pinned to the wall with a knife, his magnifying glass... Dr Watson's diary contains handwritten notes and extracts from The Hound of the Baskervilles.
The Sherlock Holmes' Museum is unlike other museums. Very little here is locked up in glass cases. You can sit in Holmes' s armchair by
the fireplace, you can examine his things and put on his deerstalker. But please bring your own pipe to smoke!
People have been writing to this address for the last 100 years. Most letters come from the United States and many correspondents ask if Mr Holmes can help them with some problem, such as finding a missing relative (or a pet). Greeting cards arrive at Cliristmas and on Holmes' birthday (he was bom on January, 6th). Dr Watson is not forgotten either.
This year the museum is opening an exciting millennium exhibition displaying scenes and familiar life-like figures from Doyle's stories.
Sherlock Holmes ['houmz] — Шерлок Холмс
to share [ʃɛə] rooms — жити разом
long-suffering [lɔŋ'sʌf(ə)rɪŋ] — багатостраждальна
to put up with — терпіти, миритися з
mummy ['mʌmɪ] — мумія
corpse [kɔ:ps] — труп
deerstalker ['diə,stɔ:kə] — (мисливський) капелюх
pipe ['paɪp] — люлька
magnifying ['mægnɪfaɪɪŋ] glass
The Hound [haund] of the Baskervilles ['baskarvɪlz] — Собака Баскервілів
to display [dis'pleɪ] — виставляти, показувати
life-like ['laɪflaɪk] — наче живий, дуже схожий
1. Why did Arthur Conan Doyle write stories about a man who was very good at solving crimes ?
2. Who were Sherlock Holmes, Doctor Watson and Mrs Hudson?
3. Why and when was a museum opened at 221b Baker Street?
4. What can you see in the museum ?
5. Is the Sherlock Holmes Museum similar to the other museums?