Writers

looked after.jpg

Arthur Conan Doyle

1859-1930

Arthur Ignatius Conan Doyle was born in Edinburgh in 1859. His parents were an Irishwoman, Mary Foyle, and Charles, the son of well-known political cartoonist and painter, John Doyle. Charles Doyle was employed as a civil servant, but his alcoholism meant the family lived in dire poverty. Concerned about the effect on her son of his “father’s degradation”, Mary Doyle sent 7 or 8 year old Arthur to live with the sister of a family friend, John Hill Burton, a Scottish historian. Arthur Doyle was then enrolled in a Jesuit boarding school and his mother arranged for the boy to have only limited contact with his family while there. After a year in Germany, Arthur began studying medicine at the University of Edinburgh, taking up opportunities to work as an assistant in general practice where he could. After he qualified, he served as a ship’s doctor on a whaling board in Greenland and on a trading boat to the West Coast of Africa. He created the character Sherlock Holmes in 1887 for A Study in Scarlet, the first of four novels and fifty-six short stories about Holmes and Dr. Watson. Celeste.