There are no crimes and no criminals in these days. What is the use of having brains in our profession? I know well that I have it in me to make my name famous. No man lives or has ever lived who has brought the same amount of study and of natural talent to the detection of crime which I have done.And what is the result? There is no crime to detect or, at most, some bungling villainy with a motive so transparent that even a Scotland Yard official can see through it.
I consider that a man's brain originally is like a little empty attic, and you have to stock it with such furniture as you choose. A fool takes in all the lumber of every sort that he comes across, so that the knowledge which might be useful to him gets crowded out, or at best is jumbled up with a lot of other things, so that he has a difficulty in laying his hands upon it. Now the skilful workman is very careful indeed as to what he takes into his brain-attic. He will have nothing but the tools which may help him in doing his work, but of these he has a large assortment, and all in the most perfect order. It is a mistake to think that that little room has elastic walls and can distend to any extent. Depend upon it - there comes a time when for every addition of knowledge you forget something that you knew before. It is of the highest importance, therefore, not to have useless facts elbowing out the useful ones.
What the deuce is it (the solar system) to me? You say that we go round the sun. If we went round the moon it would not make a pennyworth of difference to me or my work.
From a drop of water a logician could infer the possibility of an Atlantic or a Niagara without having seen or heard of one or the other. So all life is a great chain, the nature of which is known whenever we are shown a link of it.
Like all other arts, the science of deduction and analysis is one which can only be acquired by long and patient study, nor is life long enough to allow any mortal to attain the highest possible perfection in it. Before turning to those moral and mental aspects of the matter which present the greatest difficulties, let the inquirer begin by mastering more elementary problems. Let him, on meeting a fellow-mortal; learn at a glance to distinguish the history of man, and the trade or profession to which he belongs. Puerile as such an exercise may seem, it sharpens the faculties of observation, and teaches one where to look and what to look for.
There is nothing new under the sun. It has all been done before.
What you do in this world is a matter of no consequence. The question is, what can you make people believe that you have done?
I get in the dumps at times, and don't open my mouth for days on end. You must not think I am sulky when I do that. Just let me alone, and I'll soon be right.
I have a turn both for observation and for deduction.
I am the most incurably lazy devil that ever stood in shoe leather - that is, when the fit is on me, for I can be spry enough at times.
One's ideas must be as broad as Nature if they are to interpret Nature.
I have no time for trifles.
By a man's finger-nails, by his coat-sleeve, by his boots, by his trouser-knees, by the callosities of his forefinger and thumb, by hi* **pression, by his shirt-cuff - By each of these things a man's calling is plainly revealed. That all united should fail to enlighten the competent inquirer in any case is almost inconceivable.
There is a strong family resemblance about misdeeds, and if you have all the details of a thousand at your finger ends, it is odd if you can't unravel the thousand and first.
1、One should always look for a possible alternative and provide against it. It is the first rule of criminal investigation.
2、It is a mistake to confound strangeness with mystery
3、It is a capital mistake to theorize before one has data. Insensibly one begins to twist facts to suit theories, instead of theories to suit facts.
4、There is nothing more deceptive than an obvious fact
5、I never make an exception. An exception disproves the rule
6、You see, but you do not observe
7、Crime is common. Logic is rare. Therefore, it is upon the logic rather than upon the crime that you should dwell.
8、Any truth is better than indefinite doubt
9、In solving a problem of this sort, the grant thing is to be able to reason backwards
10、The more bizarre a thing is, the less mysterious it proves to be
11、Some people without possessing genius have a remarkable power of stimulating it
12、I never guess. It is a shocking habit
13、Depend upon it, there is nothing so unnatural as the commonplace
14、It is my business to know things. Perhaps, I have trained myself to see what others overlook.
15、You can never foretell what any one man will do, but you can say with precision what an average number will be up to. Individuals vary, but percentages remain constant
16、Where there is no imagination, there is no horror.