Purchase one of 1st World Library's Classic Books and help support
our free internet library of downloadable eBooks. Visit us online
at www.1stWorldLibrary.ORG - - To Sherlock Holmes she is always THE
woman. I have seldom heard him mention her under any other name. In
his eyes she eclipses and predominates the whole of her sex. It was
not that he felt any emotion akin to love for Irene Adler. All
emotions, and that one particularly, were abhorrent to his cold,
precise but admirably balanced mind. He was, I take it, the most
perfect reasoning and observing machine that the world has seen,
but as a lover he would have placed himself in a false position. He
never spoke of the softer passions, save with a gibe and a sneer.
They were admirable things for the observer-excellent for drawing
the veil from men's motives and actions. But for the trained
teasoner to admit such intrusions into his own delicate and finely
adjusted temperament was to introduce a distracting factor which
might throw a doubt upon all his mental results. Grit in a
sensitive instrument, or a crack in one of his own high-power
lenses, would not be more disturbing than a strong emotion in a
nature such as his. And yet there was but one woman to him, and
that woman was the late Irene Adler, of dubious and questionable
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