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You know my methods, Watson

Sherlock actor Benedict Cumberbatch is related to Arthur Conan Doyle, researchers discover

Actor Benedict Cumberbatch, who plays Sherlock Holmes in Sherlock, the BBC's modern adaptation of the classic detective stories, is related to the author who created his character. The link to Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, who died nearly 90 years ago, is distant: Cumberbatch is his 16th cousin, twice removed.

Their closest common ancestor is John of Gaunt, duke of Lancaster, who was the son of King Edward III and the father of Henry IV. John was Cumberbatch's 17th great-grandfather and Doyle's 15th great-grandfather. He died in 1399.

The relationship was uncovered by researchers at Ancestry.com, a genealogy website. "Making family history connections is similar to piecing together a mysterious puzzle," said Lisa Elzey, a family historian with the site, "one that the great Sherlock Holmes himself would be intrigued to solve."