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Sherlock Holmes: The Hound of the Baskervilles (ebook)

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The Hound of the Baskervilles is a crime novel by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle featuring the detective Sherlock Holmes. Originally serialized in the British Strand Magazine from August 1901 to April 1902, it is set mainly on Dartmoor in Devon in England's West Country. Conan Doyle wrote this story shortly after returning from South Africa where he had worked as a Volunteer Physician at The Langman Field Hospital in Bloemfontein. He was assisted with the plot by a 30-year-old Daily Express journalist called Bertram Fletcher Robinson (1870-1907). His ideas came from the legend of Richard Cabell who was the inspiration of the Baskerville legend. His tomb can be seen in a town called Buckfastleigh.
Squire Richard Cabell lived during the 1600's and was the local squire at Buckfastleigh. He had a passion for hunting and was what in those days described as a 'monstrously evil man'. He gained this reputation for amongst other things immorality and having sold his soul to the Devil. There was also a rumour that he had murdered his wife. On the 5th of July 1677 he passed away and was laid to rest in 'the sepulchre' but that was only the beginning of the story. The night of his internment saw a phantom pack of hounds come baying across the moor to howl at his tomb. From that night onwards he could be found leading the phantom pack across the moor usually on the anniversary of his death. If the pack were not out hunting they could be found ranging around his grave howling and shrieking. In an attempt to lay the soul to rest the villagers built a large building around the tomb and to be doubly sure a huge slab was placed on top of the grave to stop the ghost of the squire escaping.
Conan Doyle's description of Baskerville Hall was inspired by a visit to Cromer Hall in Norfolk. Some elements of the story were inspired by a stay at the Royal Links Hotel in Cromer, where Conan-Doyle first heard the story of Black Shuck, the ghost dog from the Cromer area, which is said to run between Overstrand in the east & East Runton in the West.