The Speckled Band Guadalupe guerrero

The mystery

Helen Stoner comes to Holmes office in the early morning to talk to him about her mystery. She explains she came from a very wealthy family, until the death of her mother caused her stepfather to become abusive. Two years earlier her twin sister Julia died a day before her wedding. Helen feels she is next, so she needs help in finding out what happened to her twin.



was called to solve the mysterious case of a twins death.

Helen Stoner -

30 years old

Lives with stepfather

Twin sister died two years earlier

Feared she is next

Stepfather has bad anger issues

Mother died in railway accident

Will get part of her mother's inheritance when she marries


Helen will soon be married and get the last of her mother's inheritance

Has a handprint on her arm from her abusive stepfather

Calls on Holmes to solve the mystery

Dr. Roylott-

Overprotective stepfather

Hid away after his wife's death

Has many exoctict animals

Sent a snake to kill the girls

Wanted them not to marry

If they married, he would lose his wife’s money

Shows up to Holmes office after he followed Helen there

Very big man

Almost taller than Holmes doorway

Made a vent for the snake to go from his part of the house into Julias room and go straight onto her bed

Dies after he thinks Helen is sleeping in her sisters room

Sent snake out to get her, Holmes sees the snake and forces it back

Snake bites and kills Dr. Roylott

Julia (second twin)-

Died very mysteriously

Coroner could not find any reason for her death

Died of seizures

Remembers hearing whistles at 3 am for the last three nights

Was going to get married the day after her death

The Outcome:

At first it seems the stepfather was behind the death of her sister to keep her from inheriting money after her marriage. Holmes goes to the house where the death occurs, and notices many out of the ordinary things. He notices the bed cannot be moved, and has to be kept in that exact place. He also sees there is a bell with a rope to the bed, but the bell does not work. The vent is also not doing its job, but that is where she hers whispering from. Dr. Roylott has a lot of exotic animals from Asia. Holmes feels the only way to solve the mystery is for them both to stay the night in that room, and find out where the whispering comes from. In staying the night, they hear the whispering at night. Holmes yells and sees something we cannot imagine. Holmes hits the thing with a stick then leaves the room. They both then walk to the room of Dr. Roylott to find him dead and the snake around his head. He then says "THE SPECKLED BAND", then we understand the speckled band is the snake. We then learn how he planted the snake in the vent to go directly to the bed and kill Julia.

Important quotes:

"Violence of temper approaching to mania has been hereditary in the men of the family, and in my stepfather’s case it had, I believe, been intensified by his long residence in the tropics" (Sherlock).

I believe this is a very important quote, because she explains how bad his anger has gotten. If you receive something through heredity, it is very hard to overcome it. He had all the wrong intentions with the girls, and knowing he will lose the money when the girls marry his anger only grew. Holmes picks up on this as she tells her story.

“‘I suppose that you could not possibly whistle, yourself, in your sleep?’

I picked this quote, because Julia tells how she hears whispering at the night. The snake seems like an obvious fit at the end. Neither of the sisters would ever imagine a snake in their home though, so they did not put it together.

Academic Vocab:

Irony- In the end, the stepfather ended up dead. This is irony because he tried to take the lives of innocent girls to secure his financial future. The thing he created to kill those girls, killed him.

Frame Story- I also believe there is a lot of frame story in this mystery. Holmes is the outer most story, then Helen telling the story of her sisters death. Then the story of Dr. Roylott and his death.


1. Which clues DID NOT help Holmes in finding out the mystery?

-whispering in the night

-Broken maid bell

-bed than cannot be moved

-yellow paint on a headband

2. Dr. Roylott was following Helen

true or false

3.Helen had a twin

true or false

4. Julia died within seconds

true or false

5. The coroner found the spot from the fangs of the snake

true or false

6. Holmes knew all along what happened

true or false

7. One more person was killed by the snake

true or false

8. Helen remaned unharmed

true or false

9. Holmes stayed the night at Helens house

true or false

10. The mystery was solved

true and false

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