Sunday, July 31, 2022

Class 12 Optional English Note || Summary of Three Students by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle || Fiction || Short Story

Lesson: 5

Class 12 Optional English Note || Summary of Three Students by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle || Fiction || Short Story

Three Students by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle


Sherlock Holmes, a detective

Hilton Soames, a professor and lecturer

Bannister, Hilton's servant

Gilchrist, a student and athlete

Daulat Ras, a hard- working Indian student who is weak in Greek

Miles McLauren, a brillian student and almost got expelled from the university

Dr. Watson, the narrator


Time: 1895 AD

Place: a university building in an unnamed town


crime, mystery and investigation


‘Three Students’ is one of the Sherlock Homes stories, written by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. The story deals with a case of stealing the exam questions from a university professor’s room.

The story took place in 1895. Sherlock Holmes and his friend Dr. Watson were in one of England’s most famous university towns doing some research. They received a visit from Hilton Soames, a tutor and lecturer at the College of Saint Luke's. He looked very nervous. He explained Holmes that a crime had been committed at his college. In order to prevent a scandal, Soames wanted Holmes to find the culprit without involving the police.

Soames had been reviewing papers containing a large passage in Greek that was to be translated during an examination for the Fortescue Scholarship. He left his office for an hour. Upon his returning, he discovered that Bannister, his servant, had left the keys in the lock, and someone had disturbed the papers on his desk and left the traces that showed it had been partially copied. Bannister not only denied the misconduct but also appeared to be very upset by it. The cheater left clues such as shavings from a pencil, a cut in the leather surface of the desk, and a small piece of black clay with sawdust.

Holmes and Watson went to the College of Saint Luke's. The ground of floor of a building was Soames’s room. Three students lived above him in the same building, one on each floor. Inspecting the lecturer's bedroom, Holmes found another ball of dough, and assumed that it was the place where the thief hid when he heard Soames coming back.

Soames’s told Holmes about three students. Gilchrist was a good student and an athlete, Ras was a serious and peaceful Indian fellow, and McLaren was brilliant, but unprincipled. Holmes visited them to check their pencils and their heights.

The next morning, as Homes and Watson went back to the college, Holmes told Watson that he had solved the mystery. He asked Soames to fetch Gilchrist and accused him of being a cheat in Bannister's presence. The young man fell apart as Holmes explained what happened. He was tall enough to have seen the papers on the desk as he passed the window when coming back from athletic training holding his muddy shoes. Climbing the stairs, he saw the keys in the lock and couldn't resist the temptation to enter and copy the translation. When he heard Soames come back, he hid in the bedroom.

Bannister who had known Gilchrist since his childhood, helped him to escape, convinced the young man that he could not benefit from his actions. Gilchrist revealed that had already written a letter to Soames in which he confessed to the crime. He had already decided not to take part in the examination and to join the police in Rhodesia. Holmes told Gilchrist that a bright future awaited him in Rhodesia.

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