A bizarre riddle must be solved in the case of the Musgrave Ritual…
In another story that is narrated by Holmes, he describes how he was approached by Reginald Musgrave, a friend from his university days. Musgrave reveals that two of his staff are missing from his estate in Hurlstone. Richard Brunston, his butler, and Rachel Howells, have both vanished after he fired Brunston for going through the family’s private papers.
The papers detail the Musgrave Ritual, a bizarre riddle that dates from the seventeenth century which has been passed down the family line. Musgrave caught Brunston examining it closely before he was dismissed. Can Holmes solve the riddle of the Musgrave Ritual and find Brunston and Howells?
This was a great twisting and turning case that was full of surprises. It begins with Watson describing what it was like to live with Holmes, as he “keeps cigars in the coal-scuttle, his tobacco in the toe end of a Persian slipper and his unanswered correspondence transfixed by a jack-knife into the very centre of his wooden mantelpiece.” From within the mass of papers that he keeps in Baker Street, we learn that this was Holmes’ third case and he was beginning to create a name for himself. Here his faculties are put to the test as he soon solves the riddle and in the process making a rather gruesome discovery. Very quickly, the Musgrave Ritual has become one of my favourites so far.