The Adventure of the Beryl Coronet is the eleventh story in The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes by Arthur Conan Doyle.
A strange looking man appears at Baker Street in a state, in desperate need of the help of Sherlock Holmes. His name is Alexander Holder,and he’s a banker. The day before he had received a visit from “one of the highest, noble names in England.” The noble wanted an advance of £50,000 for the duration of a week. The security he puts up for such a large sum is the Beryl Coronet, one of the greatest treasures in the empire.
Holder decides he cannot leave such a valuable item in the office so takes it home, but some time in the night, the house is burgled, the Coronet goes missing and suspicion falls squarely on Holder’s son.
It is an old maxim of mine that when you have excluded the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth.
I found this short story to be interesting and enjoyable. Holmes takes the information that he is given and, coupled, with facts that he accumulates himself – such as the study of footprints in the snow – proves that not only is the obvious suspect not the guilty party but finds who is really behind the crime (in much the same way as he does in The Boscombe Valley Mystery).
What I’ve noticed that I like about these Sherlock Holmes stories is that just because Holmes can uncover the truth it doesn’t always have to have a neat and tidy ending where the crime / mystery is solved and punishment is duly meted out. Villains can still escape, and that makes these stories a lot more like real-life.