Sherlock Holmes and his brother Mycroft investigate the murder of an amanuensis who clutches a pince-nez and whose last words were, "The professor--it was she."



(by) (as Sir Arthur Conan Doyle), (screenplay)

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Episode complete credited cast:
Rosalie Williams ...
Natalie Morse ...
Susan Tarlton
Patricia Kerrigan ...
Abigail Crosby
Christopher Guard ...
Willoughby Smith
Mrs Marker
Daniel Finlay ...
Harry Kirkham ...


With Dr. Watson occupied at his surgery with an overflow of patients, Sherlock Holmes is joined by his brother Mycroft as he tries to solve the murder of Willoughby Smith. He was found by a maid having been stabbed with and clutching a lady's golden pince-nez in his right hand. His last words were 'Professor it was she'. Smith worked as an assistant to Professor Coran, an invalid who was studying early Christianity. Smith was involved with a local teacher and suffragette Abigail Grosby with whom he had recently had a falling out. The solution however lies in events long ago in Russia and a desire for revenge. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Crime | Drama | Mystery





Release Date:

21 March 1994 (UK)  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

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Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


Sherlock's brother Mycroft (played by Charles Gray) took the place of Dr. Watson in this episode because Edward Hardwicke (Watson) was unavailable, as he was filming the motion picture Shadowlands (1993). See more »


The Professor's cigarettes clearly have filters, a feature that was not available in the late 19th Century. See more »


[first lines]
Sherlock Holmes: No, this is the monastery's accounts dating to the early fifteenth century.
Mycroft Holmes: Mm, precisely what I thought.
Sherlock Holmes: But surely this has great political significance.
Mycroft Holmes: A matter of particular delicacy.
See more »


Version of The Golden Pince-Nez (1922) See more »

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User Reviews

A Goodly Spectacle
18 February 2014 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

This is quite a good classic mystery story and one of the better offerings in the Holmes saga. It involves a mysterious murder of a young secretary. He has been stabbed in the neck with a letter opener and has bled to death, his dying statement: " was she." The secretary has also grabbed a golden pince nez (those old fashioned spectacles that sat on a person's nose). The professor in question is a bed ridden, chain-smoking historian. He is a harsh man with little patience. Holmes has been called in, assisted by brother Mycroft (apparently Edward Hardwicke, the Watson of the series, was unavailable for this episode). Holmes has been approached by a young police detective, who has produced a layout of the house and offered a few opinions. Of course, the two brothers are incensed by his basic incompetence. This leads to an investigation that banks on how someone could commit a murder in this house and not be seen by the housekeeper or the maid (who discovered the body). There is also a subplot about a women's temperance group, whose leader has become a possible suspect. There are also forces going back to events long ago involving an attempted revolution. This is also the time when Mycroft quotes their father concerning eliminating the impossible, hence, leaving behind the truth. The ultimate maxim of Holmes. Excellent performances all around, especially the Professor, played by great British stage actor Frank Finlay.

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