The Brettish Empire
Vol. I #10

July 29, 1995

Hello Everyone...

...And welcome to "TBE #10".

I promise--no bombshells will be dropped in this issue! :-> I hope you weren't too distressed by the last "TBExtra", concerning Jeremy's being diagnosed with cardiomyopathy. I wrestled with whether or not to share the sad news about Jeremy's health. I knew it would be alarming, but I also knew Jeremy's well-being was a matter of concern to you. So, I felt it best to share the story. Actually, I felt encouraged after reading about Jeremy's fortitude in the face of his misfortune; I hope you did, too. :-)


I received some enjoyable responses to my request in "TBE #9" for favorite Brett/Holmes quotes. First, here's Will Ehgoetz:

"I would have to say that one of my most favorite lines of all time is taken from The Devil's Foot wherein Holmes explains that he had been following Leon Sterndale, the famed lion hunter, and that he knew Sterndale had committed murder. Holmes states, 'I followed you'. Sterndale responds, 'I saw nothing'. Holmes replies, 'That is what you may expect to see when I follow you.' That line to me exemplifies Holmes' opinions on his own abilities and is put across in a very convincing manner by Brett. I enjoy that line every time I hear it."

Thanks, Will. Now, here's "Miz Pat" Lawrence with her choices:

"Near the beginning of The Sign of Four, when Holmes has elaborated upon his observations over a walking stick, he has just voiced parameters of the size of the dog involved. He then looks out the window and sees the client arriving with his dog, and he smiles this wonderfully impish smile and says, 'I was right!' The words just sort of roll off his lips like melted butter...Also, in The Creeping Man, when Holmes comes down the stairs to face Professor Presbery, he hands the man a business card. The Professor comments, '221-B Baker Street? Hardly an address to inspire confidence.' Holmes naturally answers the taunt with his own zinger: 'I have never sought to inspire confidence in others. I have quite enough of my own.' I don't remember the line in the book, but I thought it was appropriately placed in the script.'

Thanks, Pat. BTW, I checked the original story for that line--it's not in there. But, I agree--it's an appropriate line for the teleplay, keeping right in character with Holmes.

Keep those quotes coming--I'll still be glad to print them in future "TBE's".


"Slocombe Old Place"--Holmes is called in to solve the mystery of a matronly shop clerk's constantly changing hair color. Mollie Sugden guest stars. ;-)

(I'm sure that doesn't inspire a lot of confidence in your editor's ability to write jokes, so on to other subjects!)


Here's an account by Brian Farmer, Consumer Affairs Correspondent of PA News, about a recent auction of Sherlock Holmes memorabilia in London:

"A one shilling (5p) 1887 Beeton's Christmas Annual in which Sherlock Holmes made his first appearance in print sold for £18,000 at a London auction today.

"The book, originally bought from a London book barrow, was part of a rare collection of Holmes memorabilia which fetched nearly £150,000 at Sotheby's--about twice sales experts' predictions.

"But to the disappointment of Holmes fans, much of the collection went to America.

"An anonymous collector from Chicago bought the annual, which contained the first publication of the story A Study in Scarlet by Holmes' creator Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.

"New York book dealer Otto Penzler added a further dozen items to the American bag, including 688 issues of The Strand Magazine, which made Holmes and Doyle famous.

"Mr. Penzler, who paid £10,350--including Sotheby's commission--for the Strand collection, estimated that he had spent more than £40,000 in total. But he still expected to make a profit of about £10,000.

'If God is good I should sell them all in about six months,' he said. "I already have some collectors lined up, including a couple from the UK who are very interested.'

"The collection had belonged to Stanley MacKenzie, a world expert on Holmes who died earlier this year aged 82, and was rated one of the most important in Europe. It included books, letters from Conan Doyle, a pipe used by actor Peter Cushing in his film portrayal of Holmes and several theatre posters.

"And it was the posters which caused Sotheby's the most surprise. One thought to date back to 1902 had been expected to fetch £300 to £400 but sold for £3,400. Another, thought to date back to 1901, was listed at between £350 and £500 but fetched £4,000.

"'The prices were higher than Sotheby's expected but not any higher than Sherlockians expected,' said Chris Roden, Holmes' fan and founder of The Arthur Conan Doyle Society. 'It is a shame that so much of it went abroad. But it was very much a dealers' sale because the lots were so big. There were not too many individual items that the more down-at-heel collectors had a chance of bidding for.'

"Mr. MacKenzie, who lived in Kensington, West London, had hoped to develop a museum. Friends said he would have been bemused by the prices being paid because many of the items had been given to him or picked up for very little.

"The auction attracted fans from around the world, with several dressing for the part in Holmes-style deerstalker hats."

Well, it's certainly a shame that we "down-at-heel" fans couldn't partake in this auction. Maybe next time? ;->


Debi Rotmil passed along the following tidbit: A designer named Adel Rootstein was the first to fashion life-like mannequins for window displays in stores such as Harrod's in London. Among the real-life people she modeled mannequins after was one Jeremy Brett. So, next time you're strolling past a store window, take a good look--you might see a familiar face looking back at you!

Well, that's all for Issue 10 of TBE. I hope you enjoyed reading it, and, as always, I welcome your comments, news, and reviews on Jeremy Brett. Take care, everyone.

Until next time,

Lisa :-)

TBE Home Page

"The Brettish Empire"/"TBE" Copyright Lisa L. Oldham.