THE PROBLEM OF REGINALD MUSGRAVE
THE MUSGRAVE VERSION OF HISTORY
In the early
1990's Hurlston Manor in
The papers were the account books, ledgers, scrapbooks, journals, and scattered writings of Reginald Musgrave (1854-1931), the last lord of the manor.
These papers were quietly donated to the West Sussex Historical Society by the new owners of the manor, The West Sussex Geriatric Care Facility 
When the papers were examined by the Historical Society, it became apparent that Musgrave had been a fan of the renowned detective Mr. Sherlock Holmes, as some of his scrapbooks were devoted to Holmes’ exploits. Further investigation of the Musgrave writings made this rather obscure find of inestimable historical value.
Reginald Musgrave had not merely been a fan of Sherlock Holmes, he had been an acquaintance of the great detective. Reginald Musgrave had been depicted under his own name in the Sherlock Holmes story, "The Musgrave Ritual."
written memoirs about his life-long friendship with Sherlock Holmes.
relationship between Holmes and Musgrave and the existence of the
announced to the public, a distant branch of the Musgrave family from
northern section of
The ensuing lawsuits prevented the papers from being thoroughly examined and prepared for publication by the West Sussex Historical Society and the Sherlock Holmes Society of London. As the lawsuits went to court, another suit was filed that moved to have the papers declared a hoax or an unauthorized pastiche of the works of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle; this lawsuit was filed by the estate of Conan Doyle. The entanglement of lawsuits effectively kept any serious research from being done on the Musgrave documents. The documents could not be published or viewed by the general public, but they could be examined by legitimate scholars. 
Hoping to further its case, the estate of Conan Doyle was able to have George Alec Effinger deemed a legitimate researcher. He was, in fact, searching for material to use in an upcoming anthology of Sherlock Holmes pastiches. Once the Wessex Historical Society realized what his purpose was, they denied him visitation. Effinger was left with partial information from the
Musgrave papers. He used what little information he had gleaned to write up the short story that he entitled "The Musgrave Version.” 
Musgrave Version" was more of a teaser for a fuller adventure than a
satisfying Holmes adventure. The first section told of Musgrave's long
friendship with Holmes and how Musgrave had been treated unfairly in
account of "The Musgrave Ritual.” 
Musgrave Version" took place in 1875 while Holmes and Musgrave were
The story ends at that point with the teaser:
Just that simply began our globe spanning series of adventures: the dreadful partnership of the League of Dragons, between this very same Dr. Fu Manchu and Professor James Moriarty: the long harsh trek across Europe to Fu Manchu's fortress stronghold within the Forbidden City itself, our escape, our rescue, and our mad voyage aboard the submarine Nautilus, our meeting with the maniacal Dr. Moreau and his giant rat of Sumatra which John H. Watson transformed into the hound of Baskervilles, the murders that Holmes solved in San Francisco and the frenzied, failed journey to rescue General George Armstrong Custer from his own murdering officers.
The court cases over the Musgrave papers dragged on for years. The judges finally ruled that the Musgrave family had a legitimate claim to half of the papers, yet they also bore the responsibility for the property taxes for the manor since the death of Reginald Musgrave in 1931. The Musgrave family agreed to sell their half of the Musgrave papers to the West Sussex Historical Society for a reduction in their payment of accumulated property tax. To spite the Historical Society, the Musgrave family kept a couple of the papers as "heirlooms.” It was widely believed that they were waiting for an opportunity to sell them at an inflated price on the open market.
In 2001, George Alec Effinger was once again offered the opportunity to write a Sherlock Holmes pastiche. Learning that the Musgrave papers were now available for public viewing at the West Sussex Historical Society, he believed that this would be a good opportunity to complete the adventure Reginald Musgrave had alluded to in the story Effinger had called "The Musgrave Version"
Effinger soon learned that those papers that he had previously seen detailing that adventure were among those the papers taken by the Musgrave family. The Musgrave family did not allow anyone to see their papers. Effinger resigned himself to writing something else. He looked through the rest of the papers to see if there was another Musgrave and Holmes adventure he could use. In the papers dated 1927, he found another Musgrave and Holmes’ adventure. Musgrave had to read it several times to make certain he understood it correctly.
almost exactly as "The Musgrave Version" with Holmes being hired by Ch'ing Chuan-Fu to find a brass and enamel box,
diverged greatly from the earlier published story and lacked mention of
Professor Moriarty, Captain Nemo, and Doctor Moreau. It was also more
and told of Holmes and Musgrave's trip to
Effinger privately believed that the Conan Doyle estate was correct, that Musgrave had written unauthorized pastiches that had been taken as authentic cases of Sherlock Holmes by Holmesian scholars. The two versions of Musgrave's story represented different drafts of the same tale, the later version having excised the more fantastic elements such as Captain Nemo and Dr. Moreau to make a more realistic narrative. While still containing fantastic elements, the second draft was closer to the mystery fiction typical of Holmes and Fu Manchu stories.
In both "The
Version" and "The Adventure of the Celestial Snows," a fellow
accounts Ch'ing Chuan-Fu tells Holmes and
Musgrave that Ch'ing Chuan-Fu was a name
he used in
Version," Fu invites Holmes to his apartment near
At the outset
Adventure of the Celestial Snows,” Holmes already knows about
box which had been stolen from Fu, wished returned and wanted Holmes to
it. Holmes traveled to
The argument could be made then that "The Adventure of the Celestial Snows" is a continuation of "The Musgrave Version,” picking up where the earlier story left off. However, the action in “The Adventure of the Celestial Snows" that follows once Holmes and Musgrave enter Fu's London home does not in the least resemble Musgrave's description of the events that occurred after leaving Fu Manchu's apartment in "The Musgrave Version.” Beyond this, the Musgrave Papers also contained corroborating evidence that some of the events described "The Musgrave Version" did occur.
Once in London Holmes and Musgrave visit Ch'ing Chuan-Fu's home. He told them that his problem of the box had almost resolved itself. Fu led them to the basement where he had a torture chamber. A man hung on the wall in shackles. Musgrave was knocked unconscious. Musgrave awakened to find that he had been carried upstairs and placed a small gray blanket. The house had been stripped of all its furnishings. Musgrave inspected the house and the prison below the house but saw no sign of the prisoner or Holmes.
Two men named
Powers entered the house and questioned Musgrave. They claimed to have
involvement with the affairs of Dr. Fu Manchu. They claim that Fu
the very Genghis Khan of Crime. They also stated that dacoits were in
of Dr. Fu Manchu and had come to
They left the deserted house and almost immediately. Shortly thereafter, Musgrave, Mayfield, and Powers were accosted by dacoits. Farther down the street, Holmes fought against four dacoits. He defeated three with the Japanese martial art Baritsu, but the fourth dropped a glass ball filled with an anesthetic gas. The gas overwhelmed Holmes and the dacoits captured him. 
name of Fu Manchu was widely known and feared from
Musgrave and the others were also imprisoned and given short rations. They were informed that they had been sentenced to death by order of the Empress but that Fu was working to have these sentences removed. They were so informed of this by Fu's servant, a tall, muscular Arab named Ali al-Salaam.
Fu Manchu had a puzzle for Holmes to solve. He wanted Holmes to discover who was in league with the European "pirates." To aid Holmes in solving the mystery, Fu gave him many of the powders from the box containing the Celestial Snows, one of which, according to Musgrave, was cocaine.
Fu Manchu filled Holmes in on the backgrounds, characteristics, and mannerisms of those he suspected might be part of the conspiracy to overthrow the rule of Madame Tzu Hsi, the Dowager Empress. Fu needed Holmes’ outside perspective to catch the perpetrator because he was too close to the problem.
Fu Manchu wished for Holmes to discover the identity of the traitor at the Empress Dowager's court. Holmes felt that once the solution was given, their lives would be forfeit. Ali al-Salaam told Holmes not to worry; he was also a spy for the British and had been in contact with the British Legation.
After reviewing the evidence and interviewing Prince Kung, the Chief Eunuch of the Palace and the Dowager Empress, Holmes concluded that the Empress was the traitor. Fu Manchu refused to believe this and would not have Holmes’ solution translated for the Empress, but rather told the Empress that Holmes ascertained that An Li the Chief Eunuch was a traitor. Holmes was informed of this by Ali al-Salaam. Al-Salaam was taken from the room by some of Fu's soldiers for this perfidy.
Fu believed that Holmes had failed to solve the puzzle properly and that a conspiracy between Prince Kung and An Li had existed. Fu would have sentenced Holmes and his companions to death, but he was interrupted by bombardment of his fortress palace. A pile of debris buried Fu, and his soldiers thought he was dead. Prince Kung and a regiment of English solders had come to rescue the English prisoners.
In 1908 Musgrave received a letter from Holmes in which he enclosed a copy of a letter from Fu Manchu. Fu Manchu admitted that Holmes had been correct. The Dowager Empress had indeed created the secret societies and had been plotting against her own dynasty. Fu also took responsibility for the Boxer Rebellion; if Fu had listened to Holmes that tragic incident might have been avoided. He gave Holmes a major clue to help him create an elixir of life. This clue being that the active ingredient was the honey from a certain type of flower; however, Fu did not know which flower was needed.
Effinger copied the story, edited it, and had it
It appeared as "The Adventure of the Celestial Snows,” My Sherlock
Holmes, ed. Michael Kurland, New York:
Yet the scholar of Woldnewtonry must ask questions about the validity of Musgrave's accounts. Were they, as the Doyle estate and author Effinger believed, merely pastiches? Was there any truth to them at all? If there were some truth to them, were they two episodes or just one? If only one, which was the truth?
A few months ago in the latter part of 2003, the Musgrave family did indeed release the pieces that they kept as "heirlooms" on the open market. However, the book My Sherlock Holmes had debuted a week before the sale and so the documents released by the Musgrave family were deemed by most to be works of fiction by an unpublished author. The author may have been the person upon whom Conan Doyle based his Reginald Musgrave character. The Musgraves did not get their expected windfall, and the pieces ended up at the West Sussex Historical Society after all.
that the Musgrave family had held back was a second draft of The
Version in which Musgrave had added more details to his and Holmes’
This would seem to imply that the earlier story (“The Musgrave Version”), despite its fantastic elements, was closer to the truth than the second version (“The Adventure of the Celestial Snows”).
“The Adventure of the Celestial Snows" reads like a pastiche of both a Holmes and a Fu Manchu adventure, which may have been Musgrave’s intention. The depiction of Fu Manchu in "The Adventure of the Celestial Snows" as a very powerful and well known, world renowned Asian villain seems to be more based on how he was depicted in the Rohmer novels rather than on the real Fu of 1875. In 1875 Fu's true status and position in the Si-Fan was rising but not yet pre-eminent.
Mayfield associated with the British Legation in
been a college friend of Holmes at
Reginald Musgrave had been in the same college as myself, and I had some slight acquaintance with him. He was not generally popular among the undergraduates, though it always seemed to me that what was set down as pride was really an attempt to cover extreme natural diffidence. In appearance he was a man of an exceedingly aristocratic type, thin, high-nosed, and large-eyed, with languid and yet courtly manners. . . .Once or twice we drifted into talk, and I can remember that more than once he expressed a keen interest in my methods of observation and inference. 
relationship with Musgrave does not make it appear as though they were
companions. Yet Musgrave insists that they were. It is interesting also
rather than blame Holmes, who related the above passage to Watson,
makes it appear as though Watson was putting words in Holmes’ mouth.
sounds as if Musgrave were jealous of Watson's relationship to Holmes,
close friendship that Holmes and he truly never had. If Holmes’
Musgrave possessed "languid and courtly manners" was Holmes' tactful
manner of stating he believed Musgrave was a homosexual, then
attachment to Holmes may have been for other than his stated reasons.
have been one of the reasons why once they had returned to England
his distance from Musgrave. "For four years I had seen nothing of him
until one morning he walked into my room in
In "The Adventure of the Celestial Snows,” Musgrave casts himself as something of a hero who braved a dangerous world to rescue his friend, only to discover that friend, Holmes, a chained-up drug addict in the prison of an Oriental fiend. While it is possible that this occurred, other evidence seems to indicate that Musgrave memories were influenced by other factors, including wish fulfillment.
Adventure of Celestial Snows" was mostly fictional, it was not entirely
and did shed some light on what transpired when Holmes and Musgrave
the journey that Holmes and Musgrave undertook and events that befell
1875 to 1877 is still not completely possible, but a preliminary
outline can be
constructed. For our purposes, we believe that the events detailed in
published version of “The Musgrave Version" with its allusion of
events represents the basic outline of the journey Musgrave and Holmes
prior to ending up in
As the school
year came to
a close in 1875, Sherlock Holmes was contacted by a fellow student, a
man by the name of Ch'ing Chuan-Fu. At
this time Ch'ing Chuan-Fu—or to use his
real name Shan Ming Fu—was a
rising prospect in the secret society known as the Sublime Order of the
Peacock. He had been given the delicate mission of creating an alliance
brilliant but amoral Westerner whom the Sublime Order felt could be a
in their plans for
Moriarty, to all outward appearances a professor of mathematics of good
but with a tarnished reputation due to past scandals. What was not
known at the time was that the professor was conversant with the
underworld. It was in this capacity that the Sublime Order wished to
the professor's services. Moriarty was then composing his great work The
Dynamics of an Asteroid while supplementing his income as a
criminal. In the course of his research for his mathematical paper, he
traveled in 1871 to
Although they claimed the object was worthless, the Sublime Order informed Moriarty that it had a great religious significance and offered to buy it for a large sum of money. Rather than sell it, James Moriarty proposed an alliance between the Sublime Order and his nascent organization, if only for purposes of intelligence and trade.
The Sublime Order may not have known that James Moriarty had been recruited by the British Secret Service during his college days  or that he was a servant of the Nine.  However, they did know through one source that Moriarty was one of the last of the Capellean adoptees  and so may have had access to technology not readily available to most organizations.
The alliance between Moriarty’s organization and the Sublime Order was named the League of Dragons.
This alliance was nearly ended as soon as it began when the brass-and-enamel box was stolen from Shan Ming Fu's possession. There was evidence left behind that Moriarty had stolen it back, yet he claimed not to have done so. Shan Ming Fu did not believe that Moriarty was involved, but Shan Ming Fu could not be involved in an attempt to retrieve the box by either his superiors or the Moriarty organization.
Shan Ming Fu knew that he had to retrieve the sacred object and salvage the alliance as an obligation to those who had entrusted him with this task. The Sublime Order had saved him from disgrace and humiliation when he had been dismissed from his post as the advisor to the Governor-General of Honan.
Shan Ming Fu
began to realize that the Self-Strengthening Movement; Imperial China's
to modernize while retaining as much of the traditional culture as
doomed to fail.. The imperial
exerted little central control and most of the actual governance,
commands, and financial requirements of
Shan Ming Fu composed a document outlining a plan to salvage the Self-Strengthening Movement and provide the imperial government with the wherewithal to consolidate its power while adhering to the principles of the Self-Strengthening Movement. However, the imperial government not only failed to act on his plan but the Governor-General of Honan took offense at the document and had Shan Ming Fu dismissed from his service.
Shan Ming Fu was both humiliated and angered at his abrupt dismissal by a petty-minded power-hungry official. He was contacted by a member of his Tong and asked to work directly for them for remuneration and possible reinstatement to government service. He had been chosen for this task because of his recent efforts to reform the government. He was told he would have a bright future in the Sublime Order of the White Peacock.
In 1873 he was
Having achieved a sufficient degree of mental discipline within a year of study, Shan Ming Fu was judged suitable to carry out a delicate mission for the Sublime Order of the White Peacock.
Shan Ming Fu had learned of Holmes’ success in solving mysteries despite great danger, as in the case of the Thuggee Rathe . The matter of the stolen brass-and-enamel box was a rather delicate one and Ch'ing Chuan-Fu could not be seen as being directly involved. He would use Holmes as an unattached agent to retrieve the stolen object.
Sherlock Holmes was assisted by Reginald Musgrave in this investigation. Musgrave was a passing acquaintance who was interested in Holmes’ methods of observation and inference. Ch'ing Chuan Fu told Holmes that the brass-and-enamel box was a gift from James Moriarty, but that evidence pointed to Moriarty as having stolen it back. Ch'ing claimed not to believe this and asked Holmes to try to find the whereabouts of the box.
After a few weeks Musgrave became bored with the progress of their search and went on a European holiday to celebrate his graduation. In the course of his investigation Holmes became aware that Professor James Moriarty was not the innocuous professor of mathematics that the public believed him to be. While it was generally known he had a bit of a checkered past from a long forgotten sexual scandal, it was not generally known that the Moriarty family was deeply entrenched in various forms of corruption.
Jerrold Moriarty worked with Mycroft Holmes at the Foreign Office and
was corrupt. Sherlock Holmes discovered this when his investigation of
Moriarty began to coincide with his brother's investigation of the
activities of Jerrold Moriarty. Sherlock aided his brother in this
investigation, which resulted in the suicide of Jerrold Moriarty and
prevention of a British-sponsored resurgence of the Confederate States
Sherlock Holmes discovered that the theft had indeed been set up to look as though agents of James Moriarty had stolen the brass-and-enamel box but it was another group unconnected to Moriarty that had stolen the box.
However as Holmes’ investigation deepened, he found that thieves of the box belonged to an organization run by a man named Dawkins. Dawkins had very tentative ties to the Moriarty organization but had his own network of thieves, which he had inherited. Holmes believed that Moriarty had indeed arranged to have the box stolen through proxies but had arranged matters so that the theft would appear to be a crude frame job. Dawkins men had been found dead, strangled to death and stabbed through the heart by what appeared to be a Thuggee strangling cord and a Cossack “kindjal” dagger.
It was not
of 1875, directly after the events of Mycroft's investigation into the
family that a clue as to the whereabouts of Ch'ing
Chuan Fu's brass-and-enamel box turned up. It had been spotted by
on holiday in
The thieves were Russians of both Cossack and Polish origin and two men who seemed to be Indian origin.
Given a letter
to pursue the case, Holmes and Musgrave followed the thieves from
Holmes and Musgrave approached the Cossack and the Indian with an offer to buy the brass-and-enamel box. Holmes also expressed curiosity at their rather odd alliance.
The Cossack answered the second question first. They had been shipmates but had taken indefinite shore leave when they learned that the Tomb of Khlit had been violated. Khlit had been the ancestor of the Cossack, whose name was Andrii Bulba. The Indian had traveled with Andrii Bulba because of the sacredness of the object that had been taken from Khlit's tomb.
Holmes and Musgrave learned of the origin of the object that they were pursing and how Moriarty had acquired it. The Cossack and the Indian had a special loathing for Moriarty for he had nearly killed them and their captain. They told Holmes a fantastic tale, which Musgrave at first dismissed in his memoir, of how their Captain was Prince Dakkar, otherwise known as Captain Nemo. In the 1860s James Moriarty had worked with Prince Dakkar to built two submersible vessels, the two prototypes for a fleet. Moriarty had sabotaged the engines of one of the vessels, killing most of the crew. Prince Dakkar and a few others had survived but were sickened nearly unto death by the fumes from fuel that drove the engine. Moriarty had sailed the oceans using the submersible for piracy until his poor piloting drove it into a maelstrom in 1868.
Andrii Bulba had met Prince Dakkar in 1863 during the Polish uprising against the Russians. Andrii Bulba was the descendent of a famed Cossack warrior Taras Bulba through his son Andrii and a Polish woman Andrii had wed.  When Dakkar gathered a crew comprised of men fighting against oppression in many lands, Andrii Bulba had joined immediately. The Indian, Rajit Ghote, was a member of the Thuggee cult and joined Dakkar to ensure the freedom of his religion, which the British oppressors had outlawed.
Ch'ing Chuan-Fu was an honorable man,
he would not accept a gift that had been stolen. Holmes and Musgrave
accompany Andrii Bulba
and Rajit Ghote
However, neither Moriarty nor Ch'ing Chuan-Fu wished to give up possession of the six rings, and at the cairn Holmes, Musgrave, Andrii Bulba, and Rajit Ghote were set upon by two sets of bandits—Russian thugs hired by Moriarty and a group of Mongols hired by Ch'ing Chuan-Fu. To elude their attackers the men split into two parties: Holmes and Bulba in one party and Musgrave and Ghote in the other.
Bulba was seriously wounded, but he and
Holmes managed to
kill off most of their attackers and scare off the rest. Holmes carried
Bulba to a village where he could be
attended and followed
the trail of Musgrave and Ghote. Amidst
signs of a
great struggle he found Ghote's bloody,
a note pinned to his chest by a knife. In English it read "Please visit
Shan Lan Fo was then in upper
Holmes was led to a basement where an abandoned dungeon had been fitted with new, modern manacles and chains. Chained to the wall was a dirty unkempt figure wearing a fleece lined coat. It was Reginald Musgrave who had been kept on a starvation diet. 
When Shan Ming Fu asked for the rings of Di-Cang, Holmes knew what Shan Ming Fu was talking about. Shan Ming Fu informed Holmes that Musgrave had already been tortured and had revealed what they knew of the rings of Di-Cang. Holmes believed that the object of six interlocked rings was a representation of the rings of Di-Cang. Di-Cang was one of the four great bodhisattvas of Chinese mythology. Di-Cang was often depicted as a monk carrying a metal staff with six jingling rings on it in his right hand, which he uses to open the gates of the various hells and liberate the damned.
Shan Ming Fu told Holmes that his deduction was correct but that these rings were the real thing and when connected to the staff of Di-cang, they could open the gates of hell and raise the dead.
Fu wished for Homes to give him the rings. Holmes did not have them on his person and told Shan Ming Fu that they had been put back in the cairn of Khlit. Shan Ming Fu did not believe this and attempted to get the answer from him by various physical and psychological tortures, including starvation, drugging, the water torture, and being placed in a room with hungry rats.
Shan Ming Fu
they would subject Reginald Musgrave to the death of a thousand cuts if
did not give the rings over. Fu rejected that Holmes’ suggestion that
should be allowed to leave and retrieve the object. He believed that
would escape and inform the British authorities. Fu told Holmes to
write a note
to one of the members of the British legation with whom he had met and
to bring the rings to Fu's house. Taking the note was a trusted servant
Ali al-Salaam. He returned with Willard Powers of the British Legation
the rings to Holmes who then handed them over to Fu. Ali al-Salaam
Holmes that he was also a spy for the British and that he was keeping
British Legation well apprised of their situation. The British were,
loathe to interfere and set off another
Fu, however, told Holmes he had one more task for Holmes to perform before he could regain his freedom. As related in “The Adventure of the Celestial Snows" Fu wished to use Holmes’ deductive reasoning and objective viewpoint to examine who might be a traitor, plotting to overthrow Ch'ing Dynasty and working with the British.
are unknown, but apparently Holmes did indeed conduct translated
with members of the imperial court, including Prince Kung, Empress Tzu Hsi, An Li the Chief Eunuch, and a few others.
interview process, Holmes came to the conclusion that the Empress Tzu Hsi was going to betray her dynasty, was working
secret societies in
Holmes was informed of these events by Ali al-Salaam, who was angrily sentenced to death by Fu. Ali al-Salaam was dragged out of the room to his certain doom.
However, the Dowager Empress was known by those close to the court to be personally power hungry and yet self-destructive when it came to her dynasty. Personal power was all that mattered to her without a great deal of dynastic foresight. She dominated her son during her time as his regent. By the time he came of age and became the Emperor, his mother's reign had come to an end. To keep her power she selected a wife and four concubines for him, to keep him so busy that she could rule for him. After a few years, the emperor died of venereal disease in January 1875 and Tzu Hsi became ruler once again. However, the Empress still was not totally free to rule, for her son's favorite concubine was pregnant and if she delivered a boy, the boy would be the new emperor and his mother the dowager empress. She would not let this happen, so mysteriously the concubine died before giving birth. Many historians conjecture that this was done at the request of Tzu-Hsi. Other historians simply believe that the concubine was mentally unstable and this caused her to take her own life. With the death of her son and his pregnant concubine, the Dowager Empress had her three-year-old nephew, Kuang Hsu, who was not in direct line of succession to the throne, named as the next heir emperor with her as his regent.
Empress' direct power was concentrated in an area near the
It is likely
Sublime Order of the White Peacock were quite aware of the Empress
avaricious and duplicitous nature and hoped to exploit it by using her
figurehead. Yet they needed to discover people who were close to the
and would actively try to thwart their efforts to revitalize
When the imperial party had departed from Shan Lan Fo's home and Shan Ming Fu was alone with his two prisoners, he told them that unfortunately they now knew too much and would have to be eliminated.
Just then, an
rocked the prison and debris from the ceiling collapsed onto Shan Ming
was buried beneath the rubble. They saw that Fu was not dead but did
constrained to aid him. Holmes and Musgrave made their way clear of the
Holmes and Musgrave stopped to retrieve the six rings of Di-Cang
from where Shan Ming Fu had secreted them. Holmes did not believe that
rings were an actual divine object, but concluded that Moriarty or the
treacherous Ch'ing Chuan-Fu could use them
opposition to the
Holmes and Musgrave were discovered by a joint force of Chinese and British soldiers led by Prince Kung and Lord Mayfield. Lord Mayfield died of a heart attack as they were exiting the house of Shan Lan Fo. 
Knowing that Shan Ming Fu was still alive, Holmes felt that it was best that they leave China as soon as possible despite the British Legation's promise to keep them safe from retaliation from Shan Ming Fu.
Holmes and Musgrave had only traveled as far as Toku before they were set upon by agents of Ch'ing Chuan-Fu. They were rescued by a dead man, at least one thought to be dead by the world. Their rescuer was Prince Dakkar, otherwise known as Captain Nemo, thought to have died in 1869. Nemo took Holmes and Musgrave aboard the Nautilus.
Nemo had known that Andrii Bulba had gone to rectify Moriarty's violation of Khlit's tomb. Although Nemo did not care that much about Khlit or the desecration of his tomb, he was enthusiastic about getting even with Moriarty and so aided his Russian crewmember in retrieving the object. When Nemo learned of the possible alliance between Moriarty and the Sublime Order of the White Peacock, he used all possible means to break this alliance.
Moriarty had stolen one of his submarines, destroyed the plans, and left Nemo for dead from radiation poisoning. He had then used Nemo's name and ruined his reputation. Nemo also wished to work against the Sublime Order because its allies had betrayed him by inducing Dakkar to turn against the Nine Unknown and the Capelleans and then abandoned him, having no intention of supporting his idealistic crusade against war.
Andrii Bulba had
sent a message
to his captain about Holmes’ trip to
Nemo had the brass-and-enamel box containing the rings of Di-cang flushed through the exhaust pipe of the Nautilus and onto the ocean's floor rather than let either Ch'ing Chuan-Fu or Moriarty ever have the chance of regaining it.
to take supplies from a tropical island, Nemo insisted that Holmes and
take the chance to stretch their legs. Nemo marooned them on this
that they could not tell the world that Captain Nemo and the Nautilus
existed. Rather than killing them outright, he marooned them on
someone else had taken up residence on the island, this person being
Moreau. Dr. Moreau was at this time in the early stages of his vivisectional and transmutational
experiments to evolve animals into humanoid form. One of his first
was to increase the size and intelligence of a rat and give it a form
akin to an anthropoid ape. He tried to pass these experiments off as a
of giant rat from
anxious for his
unwelcome visitors to be on their way so he could return to his serious
research. Holmes and Musgrave were also anxious to return to
money to finance their passage back home. Using the name William Escott, Holmes became an actor working in a
at the Orpheum theatre and other theaters in
One of the actors in Holmes’ company became distraught because he had learned that his paramour had died from opium poisoning. Although she was a Chinese girl working in a parlor house, he had truly loved her and wanted to buy her from her master. However, her master had kept upping the price and dangled her forever out of his reach.
Escott asked to accompany the young actor to the mortuary where he examined the body. He found that she had been strangled to death. The first suspect was the master of the girl, but this theory proved to be incorrect; the girl had continued to be a good money maker for him so she was a valuable commodity rather than a liability at that point. As it turned out the actual murderer was the actor's brother, who believed that the girl had bewitched his brother and was ruining his life. The police declined to charge him with murder since the victim was Chinese. 
Escott was approached by two Chinese
merchants, who asked
him to investigate the delicate matter of the death of Jeanne Bonnet,
known as Little Frog Catcher. Bonnet had been found dead in her shack.
was an odd figure even for
This all came to an end when Jeanne Bonnet was found dead with a bullet in her heart. Most people, including the police, believed that she had been killed by one of the procurers whose girls she had rescued. However, because of her background the police did not care to investigate this crime.
Some anti-Chinese elements were, however, starting rumors that a Chinaman had killed Jeanne and trying to make her into a tragic figure so that they could whip up more anti-Chinese sentiment. Since Escott had attempted to get justice for Chuan Jing Jia, the murdered Chinese prostitute, the Chinese merchants wondered if he might take this case.
Holmes took the case and quickly ascertained that the police were in essence correct that the procurers had arranged to have Jeanne killed. There were also Chinese persons involved, but the ulterior motive for the crime had been one of the oldest motives in the world, jealousy. Jeanne had fallen in love with a girl who had recently joined her coterie, a Chinese girl. This did not set too well with Jeanne's lover, Blanche Buneau. In a jealous rage she had accepted the procurer's contract on Jeanne and killed her.
William Escott was seen performing in the Orpheum and
was offered a
part in a
However despite what Musgrave stated in his memoirs, they had no foreknowledge of the impending massacre nor did they race to attempt to stop it.
As a school
Musgrave was suitable acquaintance to Holmes, but as a traveling
left much to be desired. After Escott's
turn on the
Although they were not truly all that close, Holmes did correspond sporadically with Musgrave. The last occasion seems to have been in 1908 when Holmes related the letter he had received from Shan Ming Fu, now calling himself Fu Manchu. Fu Manchu had congratulated Holmes on the accuracy of his deduction concerning the Empress. Fu Manchu told Holmes that if he had not been so blind that the Boxer Rebellion could have been avoided. As recompense Fu Manchu offered Holmes clues to an elixir of youth, the key ingredient was honey made from a certain flower.
The aim of the
Rebellion was to be the vanguard of the military expulsion of Europeans
The Sublime Order of the White Peacock and Shan Ming Fu probably supported the Emperor's reforms, but after the Dowager Empress once again took control they lent support to the Boxers, realizing that win or lose the rebellion would probably bring about the end of the Ch'ing dynasty. However, the Dowager Empress survived the aftermath of the rebellion and held onto her power.
1908 was a very interesting year for Fu Manchu to have written this letter to Sherlock Holmes. In 1908 the Emperor Kuang-hsü died. The Dowager Empress chose the Emperor's nephew, P'u Yi, to succeed him, giving her yet another child to be regent over. But she died on the same day as P'u Yi was installed. P'u Yi was the last Emperor of China and the last of the Dowager Empress dynasty.
1908 is also, according to some sources, the year that Shan Ming Fu stopped used his temporary identity as Hanoi Shan and began using Fu Manchu, the name by which he would be most known. Hanoi Shan was, according to the true-crime accounts of H. Ashton-Wolfe, in Warped in the Making and The Thrill of Evil, a criminal mastermind of Asian origin. 
Fu Manchu's purpose in giving Holmes the clue about the missing ingredient of the Elixir of Life may not have been entirely altruistic. Fu Manchu may have known that Holmes would pursue the clue of the bees and save him time and trouble in research. He may have reasoned that he could always steal the formula later.
When Sherlock Holmes interfered with Fu Manchu's plans in the winter of 1914, the fact that Holmes was still working on the elixir and close to discovering the secret was probably one of the reasons that Fu Manchu spared his life.
This information from the Musgrave papers brings up the question of why Fu Manchu did not use Holmes’ royal jelly formula, which was completed in 1921. Instead Fu Manchu had to create his own Elixir of Life in 1929.  The answer seems to be that Fu Manchu had an allergic reaction to the royal jelly that would have killed him; it took him eight years to create a derivation that would work on him. As it turned out this derivation was better for it restored youth as well as prolonged life. However, the dosage was higher and it had to be taken more often to maintain a youthful age.
Dr. Fu Manchu's clue to Sherlock Holmes, whatever the reason it was given, would turn out to be a two-edged sword. While it enabled Fu Manchu to create his elixir of youth, allowing him to live on and continue his struggle against Western imperialism, it also allowed his enemies to remain youthful and continue to oppose him, such as Sherlock Holmes, Mycroft Holmes, James Bond, Dennis Nayland Smith, and Dr. Petrie.
Shan Ming Fu
James Moriarty's betrayal of him, taking it as personal affront that he
stolen back the brass-and-enamel box. He blamed Moriarty for his loss
within the Sublime Order. In 1898 Shan Ming Fu was in
the substance—called cavorite after its
discoverer—and planned to use it to build a dreadnought that would
 Hughes, Algernon, "Old
Found In Soon To Be Home For The Aged"
George Alec. "The Musgrave Version." Sherlock Holmes in Orbit. Ed.
 The Musgrave Ritual actually took place early in Holmes career as a consulting detective, prior to Holmes having met Watson. The events and all its pertinent details, including the description of Musgrave were recounted to Watson by Holmes. Musgrave conveniently overlooked that when he made Watson the scapegoat for his portrayal.
 The use of this device is intriguing in itself because one has to wonder if Fu Manchu actually had such a gas-filled glass ball, although Rohmer did not mention it so far as I recall. If Fu Manchu did have such a device then he anticipated Doc Savage by some fifty-five years or so. If Fu Manchu did not possess such a device, one wonders where Musgrave came up with the notion. Is it possible that he later witnessed an early unrecorded adventure of Doc Savage's in which the glass ball was used and inserted its use into his record of this adventure? The Musgrave papers so far examined contain no mention of such an adventure, even one that might have been transmogrified into Sherlock Holmes adventure. One is led to suspect Effinger’s hand.
 His grandson, Nigel, would later become one of the pre-eminent agents of the British Secret Service.
Arthur Conan. "The Musgrave Ritual." The
 Doyle, “The Musgrave Ritual,”
 It was
during this period that
Moriarty impregnated a Russian woman, who gave birth to the child who
eventually be known as Grigori Rasputin.
Rasputin was the son of Moriarty was established in John T. Lescroart’s
 Moore, Alan,
and Kevin O’Neill. The League of
Extraordinary Gentlemen, Volume 1, No. 5.
established in Philip José Farmer’s Lord of the Trees,
established in Philip José
Farmer’s The Other Log of
 For more on the Self-Strengthening movement see http://reference.allrefer.com/country-guide-study/china/china27.html or http://www.wsu.edu:8080/~dee/CHING/SELF.HTM
 Rache Churan appeared in The Hand of Fu Manchu, Chapter 28.
 That Fu Manchu and Fo-Hi were both members of the same tong—called the Sublime Order of the White
Peacock—was established by Rick Lai in “The Brotherhood of the Lotus,” Nemesis Incorporated, No. 28, December, 1988.
 For more information see Rick Lai’s The Secret History of Captain Nemo and the film Young Sherlock Holmes .
Michael P. and Wright, Sean M. Enter the Lion, Playboy Press:
 Many of the revelations about this case are new since the Musgrave estate only allowed George Alec Effinger to publish teasers from the memoirs of Reginald Musgrave, intending to publish the entire memoirs themselves. However, problems with the estate of Watson’'s agent have placed that particular publication on indefinite hold. Therefore they kindly allowed me to share some more of the information in the memoirs.
 Dawkins was a protégé of Fagin, and as a child Dawkins had been known as the Artful Dodger as seen in Charles Dickens' Oliver Twist.
 Unfortunately Musgrave never wrote the specifics of how he had spotted the brass-and-enamel box or even how he recognized it as the one belonging to Ch'ing Chuan-Fu. One clue among the effects in the Musgrave effects was a brass token stamped with the words Joyeux Nuits espionner trouer. This seems to be a token a French brothel, The Nights of Joy. The phrase espionner trouer seems to refer to spy room or peephole room, which was hidden hallway equipped with spy holes through which customers could pay to watch what was transpiring in the various rooms. It is possible that Musgrave paid for such a service and saw the box and or overheard conversation about it.
 See Taras Bulba by Nicolai Golgol.
 Khlit the Wolf was a Cossack active through the 16th century. He had once rescued the Chinese emperor from treasonous imprisonment, and at that time was given or otherwise acquired this artifact. His life was documented by Harold Lamb in various short stories appearing in Adventure magazine. For more information, see “Khlit” in Jess Nevins’ The Pulp Heroes <http://www.geocities.com/jjnevins/pulpsk.html>.
 Shan Lan Fo may have been depicted in August Derleth's "The Lair of the Star-Spawn" as Dr. Fo Lan. For his relationship to Shan Ming Fu please see Rick Lai's Fu Manchu Vs. Cthulhu.
 This is quite the reverse of what Musgrave claimed in his account "The Adventure of the Celestial Snows."
 Di-Cang entry, Knappert, Jan. The Encyclopedia of Middle Eastern Mythology & Religion, Shaftesbury: Element, 1993
 Holmes would later learn that Ali al-Salaam had not been keeping the British Legation apprised of Holmes’ and Musgrave's captivity. Ali al-Salaam was not a servant of Shan Ming Fu but rather one of his mentors. He was also known as Rashiel the advisor to the Wadi (Leader) of the Assassins. For more information see my articles “The Demon: Skull Face, Lord of the Dark Face” and “The Devil Doctor.” Although the Wadis came and went, Rashiel remained. The combined assault of British and Chinese troops on Shan Ming Fu's headquarters at this crucial moment seems to have been an exceedingly fortunate turn of events for Holmes and Musgrave. So fortunate in fact, it is quite likely that it was pre-arranged by Shan Ming Fu and Ali al-Salaam to give verisimilitude to the story he had woven for the Dowager Empress.
 Empress Dowager Tzu Hsii <http://www.royalty.nu/Asia/China/TzuHsi.html>
 In "The Adventure of the Celestial Snows,” Musgrave makes it appears as though Mayfield had a personal confrontation with Fu Manchu, his archenemy of many years, and that Mayfield was overpowered and killed by Fu Manchu. As shown earlier in 1875 Fu Manchu was not that well known, outside of certain circles so Lord Mayfield probably had only scant knowledge of him, if any.
 As depicted in Jules Verne's The Mysterious Island.
 For a fuller version of this clash between Moriarty and Nemo, please see Rick Lai's The Secret History of Captain Nemo.
 Ali al-Salaam or Rashiel was playing an even larger game than perhaps even Shan Ming Fu knew for he had also kept in contact with Prince Dakkar, one of James Moriarty's mortal enemies.
 Musgrave's allusion
to one to
the Giant Rat of Sumatra is just one of many such that exist in the
canon of Holmesian literature. In "The
Adventure of the Sussex
Vampire,” Holmes made an allusion to an unpublished adventure of his:
"Matilda Briggs was not the name of a young woman, Watson," said
Holmes in a reminiscent voice. "It was a ship which is associated with
giant rat of
 Moreau's next visitor, some years later, would be Edward Prendrick, as depicted in The Island of Dr. Moreau by H.G. Wells.
 So far as we can
ascertain, record of this murder
investigation by Holmes only exists in
the memoirs of Reginald Musgrave. The
 Musgrave's description of Jeanne Bonnet's life as a cross-dressing lesbian, her career as a gang leader of women, and her odd death are supported by historical facts; however, Holmes involvement in the investigation of her death and his solution to the crime cannot be verified by outside sources.
are also legends surrounding
the Battle of Little Big Horn that the Sioux and
 As seen in Sherlock Holmes and the Hands of Othello by Alexander Simmons.
 Ashton-Wolfe, H. Warped
 Cay Van Ash, Ten
 One wonders why Fu Manchu was not approached by the Nine to join them. As it turns out he had been approached early in his career but did not wish to be bound to any organization whose goals would not necessarily coincide with his. He also feared that the Nine's elixir was addictive and once someone joined they could not leave the group.
 Moore, Alan, and
Kevin O’Neill. The League of
Gentlemen, Volume 1, No. 5.