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From London ...
Activity 1

From London...

A Study in Scarlet, Arthur Conan Doyle, 1887.
“Dr. Watson, Mr Sherlock Holmes,” said Stamford, introducing us.

“How are you?” he said cordially, gripping1 my hand with a strength for which I should hardly have given him credit. “You have been in Afghanistan, I perceive.”

“How on earth did you know that ?” I asked in astonishment”.

“Never mind,” said he, chuckling2 to himself. “The question now is about haemoglobin. No doubt you see the significance of this discovery of mine?”

“It is interesting chemically, no doubt,” I answered, “but practically-”

“Why, man, it is the most practical medico-legal discovery for years. Don’t you see that it gives us an infallible test for blood stains? Come over here now!” He seized me by the coat-sleeve in his eagerness, and drew me over to the table at which he had been working. “Let us have some fresh blood,” he said, digging3 a long bodkin4 into his finger, and drawing off the resulting drop of blood in a chemical pipette. “Now, I add this small quantity of blood to a litre of water. You perceive that the resulting mixture has the appearance of pure water. The proportion of blood cannot be more than one in a million. I have no doubt, however, that we shall be able to obtain the characteristic reaction.” As he spoke, he threw into a vessel a few white crystals, and then added some drops of a transparent fluid. In an instant the contents assumed a dull mahogany5 colour, and a brownish dust was precipitated to the bottom of the glass jar.

“Ha! Ha!” he cried, clapping his hands, and looking as delighted as a child with a new toy. “What do you think of that?” Had this test been invented, there are hundreds of men now walking the earth who would long ago have paid the penalty of their crimes.”
A Study in Scarlet, Arthur Conan Doyle, 1887.

1. taking 2. laughing quietly 3. pushing 4. blade 5. brown

Phonology tip

The word “blood” is pronounced /ˈblʌd/.

Grammar in progress

Le présent simple

  • À quel temps sont les verbes en gras ?
  • Comment se construisent-ils ?

Exercices p. 162 Précis grammatical p. 273


Read the text.
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Workbook p. 73
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Present the action. Who? What? Where?

Introduce the document.

List the vocabulary related to crime.

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Present this text.

What do you learn about the characters?

What makes the dialogue realistic?

Let's talk this out!

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Share your findings with your classmate.

How would you define the personality of Sherlock Holmes?

Is he a good detective? Justify your choice.

Useful vocabulary: The scene takes place...
This is an extract / excerpt from...
There are many examples such as...
To make it more realistic, the author uses...

Let's learn!

Word clouds

  • Select one category (criminals, objects, crimes...). Make a word cloud with all the words coming to your mind about it.
  • You can either draw it or use a word cloud generator such as

Over to you!

Design the front and back cover of a detective story

Let’s use what you have learnt in and / or in !

Propose a new cover for the latest Sherlock Holmes’ or Mma Ramotswe’s adventures to the editorial board. On the front cover, you must have a picture, a title. On the back, write the synopsis and some quotes from reviews.

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