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April 5, 2012 4:32 am  #1


Analysis of Perfumes

I hope this is going in the right section of the forum.

On Sherlock's website, The Science of Deduction, there is a reference to Analysis of Perfumes. Now I have done a bit of research and have managed to find out the following:

Firstly, this is a direct reference to the original stories where in The Hiund of the Baskervilles Sherlock Holmes states, 'There are seventy-five perfumes, which it is very necessary that a criminal expert should be able to distinguish from each other, and cases have more than once within my own experience depended upon their prompt recognition.'

Secondly, in the series Sherlock, he uses his knowledge of perfumes to tell that Donovan has been staying overnight with Anderson.

Thirdly, Staffordshire University in the UK actually has research going on at the moment on the analysis of perfumes and deodorants specifically for forensic use. There are also other websites with perfume analysis especially related to sick-building syndrome. It would also appear that gas  chromatography-mass spectrometry are difficult to use to get good analysis because perfumes' ingredients are so complex.

Finally, there is a book entitled Perfume: The Story of a Murderer by Patrick Suskind, which I thought was a weird coincidence.


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April 5, 2012 6:42 am  #2


Re: Analysis of Perfumes

He also identifies Mrs Hudson's perfume at the beginning of Hounds of Baskerville when he works out she's dating the cafe guy and tells her he has a wife.


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April 5, 2012 1:45 pm  #3


Re: Analysis of Perfumes

It's a useful thing to know as a consulting detective! Sherlock has a keen sense of smell I've noticed. I like it in Belgravia when he comes home and is sniffing around like a dog, then finds Irene is in his bed.


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April 5, 2012 1:49 pm  #4


Re: Analysis of Perfumes

I've read the book entitled Perfume, it's amazing, one people don't have any odor at all and he can distinguish every smell/odor from people.

wondering if Sherlock is have similar ability XD well kinda creepy though~


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April 5, 2012 4:01 pm  #5


Re: Analysis of Perfumes

Just thinking and remembering, he also sniffs around like a dog when he goes into the kidnapped boys room in Reichenbach Fall. Then he hones in to the cricket bat, which he literally runs his nostrils up and down and finally finds the bottle of linseed oil with which the boy has left a message and the footprints.


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April 5, 2012 9:23 pm  #6


Re: Analysis of Perfumes

Oh yeah, I LOVE THAT BIT!!


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November 2, 2014 9:09 pm  #7


Re: Analysis of Perfumes

Smelling things can be very helpful? Though my sense of smell is appalling


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