“I suppose, Watson, we must look upon you as a man of letters,” said [Sherlock Holmes]. “How do you define the word ‘grotesque’?”

“Strange – remarkable,” I suggested.

He shook his head at my definition.

“There is surely something more than that,” said he; “some underlying suggestion of the tragic and the terrible. If you cast your mind back to some of those narrative with which you have afflicted a long-suffering public, you will recognize how often the grotesque has been deepened into the criminal. Think of that little affair of the red-headed men. That was grotesque enough in the outset, and yet it ended in a desperate attempt at robbery. Or, again, there was that most grotesque affair of the five orange pips, which led straight to a murderous conspiracy. The word puts me on alert.”

Sherlock Holmes and Dr Watson, “Wisteria Lodge”, The Greatest Adventures of Sherlock HOlmes, circa 1908