Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

Great Lives, Series 30 Episode 5 of 9
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Broadcaster Gyles Brandreth nominates Sir Arthur Conan Doyle as his "Great Life". Matthew Parris chairs, assisted by biographer Andrew Lycett.

Conan Doyle is best known as the creator of Sherlock Holmes. This always irritated him, and he tried to kill off the great detective, only to bring him back by popular demand. But there was more to Conan Doyle than Holmes. A sportsman who helped bring skiing to the Alps, a campaigner against the Belgian atrocities in the Congo, and most startlingly, a convinced spiritualist who became embroiled in a public argument with Harry Houdini over whether it was possible to make contact with the dead.

The paradox of Conan Doyle's life was that, having invented the most rational, cerebral fictional character of all time, he himself embraced superstition and behaved in ways that caused even his allies to despair of his credulity.

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30 minutes

Last on

Fri 3 May 2013 23:00

Credits

Role Contributor
PresenterMatthew Parris
PresenterMatthew Parris
Interviewed GuestGyles Brandreth
Interviewed GuestGyles Brandreth
Interviewed GuestAndrew Lycett
Interviewed GuestAndrew Lycett
ProducerJolyon Jenkins
ProducerJolyon Jenkins

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