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Did you spot them?

In Her Defence contains several references to Agatha Christie from both her personal life and her writing.  Some are obvious, some are very much not!  For a bit of fun, here they are:

*Warning – contains spoilers!*

Catherine/KatherineKatherine Martindale is the name of the murderer in ‘The Clocks’

PhilipPhilip Lombard is one of the main characters in ‘And Then There were None’

Ridgeway KC Linnet Ridgeway is the murder victim in ‘Death on the Nile’

WPC Alice JonesThe name of the officer who helps to prove murder in ‘Dead Man’s Folly’

The CroftsIn ‘Peril at End House’ the fraudulent housekeepers are called Mr & Mrs Croft

Raymond (a pupil at Hillside) – Miss Marple’s nephew

Hillside (Philip’s school) The name of the house bought by Gwenda in ‘Sleeping Murder’

Clifton (school where Philip’s mother worked)Agatha’s first husband, Archibald, attended Clifton College, Bristol

Mr GilchristMurder victim Cora Lansquenet’s companion is called Miss Gilchrist in ‘After the Funeral’

Barnard Lodge (the ‘bolt hole by the sea’)Betty Barnard is the ‘B’ victim in ‘The ABC Murders’

Leonard, Philip’s brotherLeonard Vole is accused but acquitted of murder in ‘Witness for the Prosecution’

3rd December (the night of the murder)The date (in 1926) when Agatha went missing following Archie’s announcement that he wanted a divorce

The BlacklocksIn ‘A Murder is Announced’, Letitia Blacklock is revealed to be posing as her twin sister Charlotte

4 Whitehaven MansionsHercule Poirot’s residence in London

Derringer .22 pistolAlthough not named, the pistol used by Jaqueline De Belfort in ‘Death on the Nile’ is described as ‘a small pearl handled pistol – a dainty toy’. In the 2004 TV adaptation, a Derringer is used to kill Mrs Otterbourne.

(Regent) 1890 (phone number)The year of Agatha Christie’s birth

Dr SheppardThe narrator in ‘The Murder of Roger Ackroyd’

Bexhill on Sea (location of Barnard Lodge)The town where Betty Barnard is murdered in ‘The ABC Murders’

Eastbourne (residence of the Crofts)The Grand Hotel in Eastbourne appeared as The Majestic Hotel in filming of ‘The Body in the Library’

Catherine’s threat to pretend to kill herselfAgatha’s mysterious disappearance on 3rd December 1926 when Archie asked her for a divorce

LaudanumReference to Agatha Christie’s extensive knowledge of poisons having studied chemistry and worked as a dispenser

“After death came sorrow, despair and heartbreak. But there is no need to dwell on it”Reflecting on the period following her divorce in her autobiography, Christie wrote, “So, after illness, came sorrow, despair and heartbreak. There is no need to dwell on it”

There is also a veiled reference to Bletchley Park in the play but of course in 1947 it was still very much a secret and could not and would not have been discussed.  Interestingly, according to Wikipedia:

The British intelligence agency MI5 investigated Christie after a character called Major Bletchley appeared in her 1941 thriller N or M?, which was about a hunt for a pair of deadly fifth columnists in wartime England.  MI5 was concerned that Christie had a spy in Britain’s top-secret codebreaking centre, Bletchley Park. The agency’s fears were allayed when Christie told her friend, the codebreaker Dilly Knox, “I was stuck there on my way by train from Oxford to London and took revenge by giving the name to one of my least lovable characters.”