source: trunk/CrypPlugins/CostFunction/Data/StatisticsCorpusEN @ 1426

Last change on this file since 1426 was 1426, checked in by malischewski, 11 years ago

Added support for multiple language files used for generation of Bigram/Trigram statistics, German/English for now.
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1To Sherlock Holmes she is always THE woman. I have seldom heard
2him mention her under any other name. In his eyes she eclipses
3and predominates the whole of her sex. It was not that he felt
4any emotion akin to love for Irene Adler. All emotions, and that
5one particularly, were abhorrent to his cold, precise but
6admirably balanced mind. He was, I take it, the most perfect
7reasoning and observing machine that the world has seen, but as a
8lover he would have placed himself in a false position. He never
9spoke of the softer passions, save with a gibe and a sneer. They
10were admirable things for the observer--excellent for drawing the
11veil from men's motives and actions. But for the trained reasoner
12to admit such intrusions into his own delicate and finely
13adjusted temperament was to introduce a distracting factor which
14might throw a doubt upon all his mental results. Grit in a
15sensitive instrument, or a crack in one of his own high-power
16lenses, would not be more disturbing than a strong emotion in a
17nature such as his. And yet there was but one woman to him, and
18that woman was the late Irene Adler, of dubious and questionable
19memory.
20
21I had seen little of Holmes lately. My marriage had drifted us
22away from each other. My own complete happiness, and the
23home-centred interests which rise up around the man who first
24finds himself master of his own establishment, were sufficient to
25absorb all my attention, while Holmes, who loathed every form of
26society with his whole Bohemian soul, remained in our lodgings in
27Baker Street, buried among his old books, and alternating from
28week to week between cocaine and ambition, the drowsiness of the
29drug, and the fierce energy of his own keen nature. He was still,
30as ever, deeply attracted by the study of crime, and occupied his
31immense faculties and extraordinary powers of observation in
32following out those clues, and clearing up those mysteries which
33had been abandoned as hopeless by the official police. From time
34to time I heard some vague account of his doings: of his summons
35to Odessa in the case of the Trepoff murder, of his clearing up
36of the singular tragedy of the Atkinson brothers at Trincomalee,
37and finally of the mission which he had accomplished so
38delicately and successfully for the reigning family of Holland.
39Beyond these signs of his activity, however, which I merely
40shared with all the readers of the daily press, I knew little of
41my former friend and companion.
42
43One night--it was on the twentieth of March, 1888--I was
44returning from a journey to a patient (for I had now returned to
45civil practice), when my way led me through Baker Street. As I
46passed the well-remembered door, which must always be associated
47in my mind with my wooing, and with the dark incidents of the
48Study in Scarlet, I was seized with a keen desire to see Holmes
49again, and to know how he was employing his extraordinary powers.
50His rooms were brilliantly lit, and, even as I looked up, I saw
51his tall, spare figure pass twice in a dark silhouette against
52the blind. He was pacing the room swiftly, eagerly, with his head
53sunk upon his chest and his hands clasped behind him. To me, who
54knew his every mood and habit, his attitude and manner told their
55own story. He was at work again. He had risen out of his
56drug-created dreams and was hot upon the scent of some new
57problem. I rang the bell and was shown up to the chamber which
58had formerly been in part my own.
59
60His manner was not effusive. It seldom was; but he was glad, I
61think, to see me. With hardly a word spoken, but with a kindly
62eye, he waved me to an armchair, threw across his case of cigars,
63and indicated a spirit case and a gasogene in the corner. Then he
64stood before the fire and looked me over in his singular
65introspective fashion.
66
67"Wedlock suits you," he remarked. "I think, Watson, that you have
68put on seven and a half pounds since I saw you."
69
70"Seven!" I answered.
71
72"Indeed, I should have thought a little more. Just a trifle more,
73I fancy, Watson. And in practice again, I observe. You did not
74tell me that you intended to go into harness."
75
76"Then, how do you know?"
77
78"I see it, I deduce it. How do I know that you have been getting
79yourself very wet lately, and that you have a most clumsy and
80careless servant girl?"
81
82"My dear Holmes," said I, "this is too much. You would certainly
83have been burned, had you lived a few centuries ago. It is true
84that I had a country walk on Thursday and came home in a dreadful
85mess, but as I have changed my clothes I can't imagine how you
86deduce it. As to Mary Jane, she is incorrigible, and my wife has
87given her notice, but there, again, I fail to see how you work it
88out."
89
90He chuckled to himself and rubbed his long, nervous hands
91together.
92
93"It is simplicity itself," said he; "my eyes tell me that on the
94inside of your left shoe, just where the firelight strikes it,
95the leather is scored by six almost parallel cuts. Obviously they
96have been caused by someone who has very carelessly scraped round
97the edges of the sole in order to remove crusted mud from it.
98Hence, you see, my double deduction that you had been out in vile
99weather, and that you had a particularly malignant boot-slitting
100specimen of the London slavey. As to your practice, if a
101gentleman walks into my rooms smelling of iodoform, with a black
102mark of nitrate of silver upon his right forefinger, and a bulge
103on the right side of his top-hat to show where he has secreted
104his stethoscope, I must be dull, indeed, if I do not pronounce
105him to be an active member of the medical profession."
106
107I could not help laughing at the ease with which he explained his
108process of deduction. "When I hear you give your reasons," I
109remarked, "the thing always appears to me to be so ridiculously
110simple that I could easily do it myself, though at each
111successive instance of your reasoning I am baffled until you
112explain your process. And yet I believe that my eyes are as good
113as yours."
114
115"Quite so," he answered, lighting a cigarette, and throwing
116himself down into an armchair. "You see, but you do not observe.
117The distinction is clear. For example, you have frequently seen
118the steps which lead up from the hall to this room."
119
120"Frequently."
121
122"How often?"
123
124"Well, some hundreds of times."
125
126"Then how many are there?"
127
128"How many? I don't know."
129
130"Quite so! You have not observed. And yet you have seen. That is
131just my point. Now, I know that there are seventeen steps,
132because I have both seen and observed. By-the-way, since you are
133interested in these little problems, and since you are good
134enough to chronicle one or two of my trifling experiences, you
135may be interested in this." He threw over a sheet of thick,
136pink-tinted note-paper which had been lying open upon the table.
137"It came by the last post," said he. "Read it aloud."
138
139The note was undated, and without either signature or address.
140
141"There will call upon you to-night, at a quarter to eight
142o'clock," it said, "a gentleman who desires to consult you upon a
143matter of the very deepest moment. Your recent services to one of
144the royal houses of Europe have shown that you are one who may
145safely be trusted with matters which are of an importance which
146can hardly be exaggerated. This account of you we have from all
147quarters received. Be in your chamber then at that hour, and do
148not take it amiss if your visitor wear a mask."
149
150"This is indeed a mystery," I remarked. "What do you imagine that
151it means?"
152
153"I have no data yet. It is a capital mistake to theorize before
154one has data. Insensibly one begins to twist facts to suit
155theories, instead of theories to suit facts. But the note itself.
156What do you deduce from it?"
157
158I carefully examined the writing, and the paper upon which it was
159written.
160
161"The man who wrote it was presumably well to do," I remarked,
162endeavouring to imitate my companion's processes. "Such paper
163could not be bought under half a crown a packet. It is peculiarly
164strong and stiff."
165
166"Peculiar--that is the very word," said Holmes. "It is not an
167English paper at all. Hold it up to the light."
168
169I did so, and saw a large "E" with a small "g," a "P," and a
170large "G" with a small "t" woven into the texture of the paper.
171
172"What do you make of that?" asked Holmes.
173
174"The name of the maker, no doubt; or his monogram, rather."
175
176"Not at all. The 'G' with the small 't' stands for
177'Gesellschaft,' which is the German for 'Company.' It is a
178customary contraction like our 'Co.' 'P,' of course, stands for
179'Papier.' Now for the 'Eg.' Let us glance at our Continental
180Gazetteer." He took down a heavy brown volume from his shelves.
181"Eglow, Eglonitz--here we are, Egria. It is in a German-speaking
182country--in Bohemia, not far from Carlsbad. 'Remarkable as being
183the scene of the death of Wallenstein, and for its numerous
184glass-factories and paper-mills.' Ha, ha, my boy, what do you
185make of that?" His eyes sparkled, and he sent up a great blue
186triumphant cloud from his cigarette.
187
188"The paper was made in Bohemia," I said.
189
190"Precisely. And the man who wrote the note is a German. Do you
191note the peculiar construction of the sentence--'This account of
192you we have from all quarters received.' A Frenchman or Russian
193could not have written that. It is the German who is so
194uncourteous to his verbs. It only remains, therefore, to discover
195what is wanted by this German who writes upon Bohemian paper and
196prefers wearing a mask to showing his face. And here he comes, if
197I am not mistaken, to resolve all our doubts."
198
199As he spoke there was the sharp sound of horses' hoofs and
200grating wheels against the curb, followed by a sharp pull at the
201bell. Holmes whistled.
202
203"A pair, by the sound," said he. "Yes," he continued, glancing
204out of the window. "A nice little brougham and a pair of
205beauties. A hundred and fifty guineas apiece. There's money in
206this case, Watson, if there is nothing else."
207
208"I think that I had better go, Holmes."
209
210"Not a bit, Doctor. Stay where you are. I am lost without my
211Boswell. And this promises to be interesting. It would be a pity
212to miss it."
213
214"But your client--"
215
216"Never mind him. I may want your help, and so may he. Here he
217comes. Sit down in that armchair, Doctor, and give us your best
218attention."
219
220A slow and heavy step, which had been heard upon the stairs and
221in the passage, paused immediately outside the door. Then there
222was a loud and authoritative tap.
223
224"Come in!" said Holmes.
225
226A man entered who could hardly have been less than six feet six
227inches in height, with the chest and limbs of a Hercules. His
228dress was rich with a richness which would, in England, be looked
229upon as akin to bad taste. Heavy bands of astrakhan were slashed
230across the sleeves and fronts of his double-breasted coat, while
231the deep blue cloak which was thrown over his shoulders was lined
232with flame-coloured silk and secured at the neck with a brooch
233which consisted of a single flaming beryl. Boots which extended
234halfway up his calves, and which were trimmed at the tops with
235rich brown fur, completed the impression of barbaric opulence
236which was suggested by his whole appearance. He carried a
237broad-brimmed hat in his hand, while he wore across the upper
238part of his face, extending down past the cheekbones, a black
239vizard mask, which he had apparently adjusted that very moment,
240for his hand was still raised to it as he entered. From the lower
241part of the face he appeared to be a man of strong character,
242with a thick, hanging lip, and a long, straight chin suggestive
243of resolution pushed to the length of obstinacy.
244
245"You had my note?" he asked with a deep harsh voice and a
246strongly marked German accent. "I told you that I would call." He
247looked from one to the other of us, as if uncertain which to
248address.
249
250"Pray take a seat," said Holmes. "This is my friend and
251colleague, Dr. Watson, who is occasionally good enough to help me
252in my cases. Whom have I the honour to address?"
253
254"You may address me as the Count Von Kramm, a Bohemian nobleman.
255I understand that this gentleman, your friend, is a man of honour
256and discretion, whom I may trust with a matter of the most
257extreme importance. If not, I should much prefer to communicate
258with you alone."
259
260I rose to go, but Holmes caught me by the wrist and pushed me
261back into my chair. "It is both, or none," said he. "You may say
262before this gentleman anything which you may say to me."
263
264The Count shrugged his broad shoulders. "Then I must begin," said
265he, "by binding you both to absolute secrecy for two years; at
266the end of that time the matter will be of no importance. At
267present it is not too much to say that it is of such weight it
268may have an influence upon European history."
269
270"I promise," said Holmes.
271
272"And I."
273
274"You will excuse this mask," continued our strange visitor. "The
275august person who employs me wishes his agent to be unknown to
276you, and I may confess at once that the title by which I have
277just called myself is not exactly my own."
278
279"I was aware of it," said Holmes dryly.
280
281"The circumstances are of great delicacy, and every precaution
282has to be taken to quench what might grow to be an immense
283scandal and seriously compromise one of the reigning families of
284Europe. To speak plainly, the matter implicates the great House
285of Ormstein, hereditary kings of Bohemia."
286
287"I was also aware of that," murmured Holmes, settling himself
288down in his armchair and closing his eyes.
289
290Our visitor glanced with some apparent surprise at the languid,
291lounging figure of the man who had been no doubt depicted to him
292as the most incisive reasoner and most energetic agent in Europe.
293Holmes slowly reopened his eyes and looked impatiently at his
294gigantic client.
295
296"If your Majesty would condescend to state your case," he
297remarked, "I should be better able to advise you."
298
299The man sprang from his chair and paced up and down the room in
300uncontrollable agitation. Then, with a gesture of desperation, he
301tore the mask from his face and hurled it upon the ground. "You
302are right," he cried; "I am the King. Why should I attempt to
303conceal it?"
304
305"Why, indeed?" murmured Holmes. "Your Majesty had not spoken
306before I was aware that I was addressing Wilhelm Gottsreich
307Sigismond von Ormstein, Grand Duke of Cassel-Felstein, and
308hereditary King of Bohemia."
309
310"But you can understand," said our strange visitor, sitting down
311once more and passing his hand over his high white forehead, "you
312can understand that I am not accustomed to doing such business in
313my own person. Yet the matter was so delicate that I could not
314confide it to an agent without putting myself in his power. I
315have come incognito from Prague for the purpose of consulting
316you."
317
318"Then, pray consult," said Holmes, shutting his eyes once more.
319
320"The facts are briefly these: Some five years ago, during a
321lengthy visit to Warsaw, I made the acquaintance of the well-known
322adventuress, Irene Adler. The name is no doubt familiar to you."
323
324"Kindly look her up in my index, Doctor," murmured Holmes without
325opening his eyes. For many years he had adopted a system of
326docketing all paragraphs concerning men and things, so that it
327was difficult to name a subject or a person on which he could not
328at once furnish information. In this case I found her biography
329sandwiched in between that of a Hebrew rabbi and that of a
330staff-commander who had written a monograph upon the deep-sea
331fishes.
332
333"Let me see!" said Holmes. "Hum! Born in New Jersey in the year
3341858. Contralto--hum! La Scala, hum! Prima donna Imperial Opera
335of Warsaw--yes! Retired from operatic stage--ha! Living in
336London--quite so! Your Majesty, as I understand, became entangled
337with this young person, wrote her some compromising letters, and
338is now desirous of getting those letters back."
339
340"Precisely so. But how--"
341
342"Was there a secret marriage?"
343
344"None."
345
346"No legal papers or certificates?"
347
348"None."
349
350"Then I fail to follow your Majesty. If this young person should
351produce her letters for blackmailing or other purposes, how is
352she to prove their authenticity?"
353
354"There is the writing."
355
356"Pooh, pooh! Forgery."
357
358"My private note-paper."
359
360"Stolen."
361
362"My own seal."
363
364"Imitated."
365
366"My photograph."
367
368"Bought."
369
370"We were both in the photograph."
371
372"Oh, dear! That is very bad! Your Majesty has indeed committed an
373indiscretion."
374
375"I was mad--insane."
376
377"You have compromised yourself seriously."
378
379"I was only Crown Prince then. I was young. I am but thirty now."
380
381"It must be recovered."
382
383"We have tried and failed."
384
385"Your Majesty must pay. It must be bought."
386
387"She will not sell."
388
389"Stolen, then."
390
391"Five attempts have been made. Twice burglars in my pay ransacked
392her house. Once we diverted her luggage when she travelled. Twice
393she has been waylaid. There has been no result."
394
395"No sign of it?"
396
397"Absolutely none."
398
399Holmes laughed. "It is quite a pretty little problem," said he.
400
401"But a very serious one to me," returned the King reproachfully.
402
403"Very, indeed. And what does she propose to do with the
404photograph?"
405
406"To ruin me."
407
408"But how?"
409
410"I am about to be married."
411
412"So I have heard."
413
414"To Clotilde Lothman von Saxe-Meningen, second daughter of the
415King of Scandinavia. You may know the strict principles of her
416family. She is herself the very soul of delicacy. A shadow of a
417doubt as to my conduct would bring the matter to an end."
418
419"And Irene Adler?"
420
421"Threatens to send them the photograph. And she will do it. I
422know that she will do it. You do not know her, but she has a soul
423of steel. She has the face of the most beautiful of women, and
424the mind of the most resolute of men. Rather than I should marry
425another woman, there are no lengths to which she would not
426go--none."
427
428"You are sure that she has not sent it yet?"
429
430"I am sure."
431
432"And why?"
433
434"Because she has said that she would send it on the day when the
435betrothal was publicly proclaimed. That will be next Monday."
436
437"Oh, then we have three days yet," said Holmes with a yawn. "That
438is very fortunate, as I have one or two matters of importance to
439look into just at present. Your Majesty will, of course, stay in
440London for the present?"
441
442"Certainly. You will find me at the Langham under the name of the
443Count Von Kramm."
444
445"Then I shall drop you a line to let you know how we progress."
446
447"Pray do so. I shall be all anxiety."
448
449"Then, as to money?"
450
451"You have carte blanche."
452
453"Absolutely?"
454
455"I tell you that I would give one of the provinces of my kingdom
456to have that photograph."
457
458"And for present expenses?"
459
460The King took a heavy chamois leather bag from under his cloak
461and laid it on the table.
462
463"There are three hundred pounds in gold and seven hundred in
464notes," he said.
465
466Holmes scribbled a receipt upon a sheet of his note-book and
467handed it to him.
468
469"And Mademoiselle's address?" he asked.
470
471"Is Briony Lodge, Serpentine Avenue, St. John's Wood."
472
473Holmes took a note of it. "One other question," said he. "Was the
474photograph a cabinet?"
475
476"It was."
477
478"Then, good-night, your Majesty, and I trust that we shall soon
479have some good news for you. And good-night, Watson," he added,
480as the wheels of the royal brougham rolled down the street. "If
481you will be good enough to call to-morrow afternoon at three
482o'clock I should like to chat this little matter over with you."
483
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