Dumb Witness

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Poirot receives a letter from a woman convinced her relatives are trying to kill her, but he reads it just too late…Everyone blames Emily's accident on a rubber ball left on the stairs by her frisky terrier.

"Once I had started reading, I did not have to rely on Bob or his cleverness to keep me interested. This is Agatha Christie at her best."

Daily Mirror, 1937


About this story

First released

November 1936 (serialised in The Saturday Evening Post, US)

Genre

  • Murder Mystery, 
  • Detective

Formats

  • Radio Play, 
  • Novel, 
  • TV, 
  • Graphic Novel

Recurring characters

  • Poirot, 
  • Hastings

Murder methods

Setting

  • House

A moment for Agatha Christie to indulge in her love of dogs. She had always had a dog since a young age (not the same one!) and was incredibly fond of them, and Bob is directly inspired by her own pet. The book is actually dedicated to Agatha Christie's own wire-haired terrier Peter; "A dog in a thousand". This story also contains the penultimate appearance of Hastings, with several references to earlier cases including Murder on the Orient Express and Death in the Clouds.

It was first published in the UK in 1937, however in 2004 John Curran discovered ...

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A moment for Agatha Christie to indulge in her love of dogs. She had always had a dog since a young age (not the same one!) and was incredibly fond of them, and Bob is directly inspired by her own pet. The book is actually dedicated to Agatha Christie's own wire-haired terrier Peter; "A dog in a thousand". This story also contains the penultimate appearance of Hastings, with several references to earlier cases including Murder on the Orient Express and Death in the Clouds.

It was first published in the UK in 1937, however in 2004 John Curran discovered an early version of the story titled The Incident of the Dog’s Ball which was published in his examination of her works, Murder in the Making.

In 1996 the story was adapted for TV and starred David Suchet alongside Hugh Fraser, the firmly established Hastings. The story was adapted for radio in 2007, featuring a full cast and John Moffatt reprising his role as Poirot. A graphic novel of the story was published in 2009.



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