8 things to see at London’s Sherlock Holmes exhibition

Date Posted: 05/06/2014

Benedict Cumberbatch as Sherlock Holmes.

Pictured: Benedict Cumberbatch in Belstaff coat, photograph by Colin Hutton © Hartswood Films.

The world of one of the greatest fictional detectives of all time will be illuminated at the Museum of London this autumn. Here’s 8 exhibition highlights for fans of the super sleuth.

Sherlock Holmes: The Man Who Never Lived And Will Never Die runs from 17th October to 12th April. The exhibition promises to be the largest of its kind for over 60 years, drawing on the museum’s Victorian and Edwardian collection and bringing together Sherlock Holmes material from across the globe.

1. BBC Sherlock Belstaff coat and dressing gown

The exhibition examines the evolution of Holmes and his portrayal in popular culture - each actor offering clues to why he has endured, reinvented for generation after generation.

Bringing the stories into the 21st century, group visitors to the exhibition will be able to see costumes from the recent television series starring Benedict Cumberbatch; including his Belstaff coat and Derek Rose camel dressing gown, on loan from Hartswood Films.

2. A portrait of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle by Sidney Paget (1897)

This oil on canvas painting of the creator of Sherlock Holmes, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, is by Sidney Paget, Conan Doyle’s friend and illustrator.

It is being displayed to the UK public for the first time. The painting, which is on loan from the Conan Doyle Foundation and is currently undergoing conservation in Switzerland, conveys a compelling psychological portrait of the author at the height of his literary fame in 1897.

3. Original pages from Edgar Allan Poe’s manuscript of The Murders in the Rue Morgue

The American literary great, Edgar Allan Poe, was a formative influence on Conan Doyle and his early concepts for the consulting detective.

The Murders in the Rue Morgue (1841) was one of the seminal crime fiction stories of its era and these hand-written manuscript pages are on loan from the Free Library of Philadelphia and in the UK for the first time.

Sherlock Holmes exhibition objects.

Pictured: Sherlock Holmes exhibition objects © Museum of London.

4. Original copies of The Strand magazine (1891)

The Strand magazine brought the Sherlock Holmes short stories to the masses, selling up to 300,000 copies per month. It was also in the pages of the magazine that Sidney Paget’s illustrations that helped create the ‘look’ of Sherlock Holmes, including the instantly recognisable deerstalker.

5. Pipe and deerstalker

No Sherlock Holmes exhibition could be complete without a pipe and deerstalker. The exhibition will explain where the ideas for these symbols originally came from, and their real-world precedence, with objects sourced from the period when Conan Doyle was writing.

6. George Washington Wilson photographs

See first-hand the Victorian London which informed Conan Doyle’s stories and the characters, in these photographs by George Washington Wilson. From hansom cabs to bustling landmarks – they are a window into the world of Holmes.

7. Manuscript from Conan Doyle’s The Adventure of the Empty House (1903)

Alongside Poe’s work is the manuscript of The Empty House, the story which sees the return of Sherlock Holmes, after his confrontation with Moriarty at the Reichenbach Falls during The Final Problem (1893).

Its publication demonstrates the public appetite for the Sherlock Holmes stories, with Conan Doyle reviving the character ten years on.

8. John Anderson, Westminster Bridge, Houses of Parliament seen from the River (1872)

A painting of one of London’s icons, this work by John Anderson offers an artistic insight into the London of Sherlock Holmes, bringing the late 19th century city into sharp perspective, through the prism of the stories.

Tickets for Sherlock Holmes: The Man Who Never Lived And Will Never Die are on sale to group travel organisers now, along with an exclusive curator talk.

For more group travel information or to book contact:

020-7001 9844

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