The Complete Chronology

Early 1900s (possibly 1909):

The Chocolate Box.

1917:

JULY: The Mysterious Affair at Styles

ca. 1928-1932:

1928:
APRIL: The Mystery of the Spanish Chest
SEPTEMBER: The Adventure of Johnnie Waverly

1929:
JULY: The Cornish Mystery

1930:
FEBRUARY: The Mystery of Hunter’s Lodge
AUGUST: The Plymouth Express
OCTOBER: The Disappearance of Mr. Davenheim
NOVEMBER: The King of Clubs

1931:
SEPTEMBER: The Third-Floor Flat

1932:
JANUARY: Problem at Sea
FEBRUARY: The Adventure of the Western Star
JULY: Dumb Witness

July 1932-May 1933:

MAY 1933: The Murder of Roger Ackroyd

1933-1936:

1933: 
AUG/SEPT: The ABC Murders
OCTOBER: The Kidnapped Prime Minister

1934:
APRIL:The Jewel Robbery at the Grand Metropolitan
MAY: The Adventure of the Egyptian Tomb
JUNE: Four and Twenty Blackbirds
JULY: The Double Clue
AUGUST: Wasp’s Nest
OCT/NOV: Triangle at Rhodes

1935:
MAY: How Does Your Garden Grow?
JUNE/JULY: Death in the Clouds
JULY: The Adventure of the Clapham Cook
JULY: The Veiled Lady
AUGUST: The Lost Mine
AUGUST: Peril at End House
SEPTEMBER: The Tragedy at Marsdon Manor
SEPTEMBER: The Adventure of the Italian Nobleman
OCTOBER: Double Sin
NOVEMBER: Murder in the Mews
NOVEMBER: The Affair at the Victory Ball
DECEMBER: The Theft of the Royal Ruby

1936:
JANUARY: Death on the Nile
FEBRUARY: The Dream
MARCH: Dead Man’s Mirror
APRIL: Hickory Dickory Dock
MAY: The Million Dollar Bond Robbery
JUNE: The Case of the Missing Will
JUNE: The Underdog
JULY: Murder on the Links
JULY: After the Funeral
AUGUST: Evil Under the Sun
SEPTEMBER: The Yellow Iris
OCTOBER: The Incredible Theft
NOVEMBER: The Adventure of the Cheap Flat
DECEMBER: Hercule Poirot’s Christmas

1937-1939:

1937:
JANUARY: Appointment With Death
MAY: The Mystery of the Blue Train
JUNE:  Five Little Pigs
JUNE/JULY:  Lord Edgware Dies
AUGUST: One, Two Buckle My Shoe
SEPTEMBER: Cards on the Table
SEPTEMBER: Sad Cypress
SEPT/OCT: Taken at the Flood
OCT/NOV: Third Girl

1938:
JANUARY:  Murder in Mesopotamia
JAN/FEBR:  Murder on the Orient Express
FEBRUARY: Elephants Can Remember 
JUNE: Dead Man's Folly
JULY/AUG:  Three Act Tragedy
SEPTEMBER: Cat Among the Pigeons
SEPTEMBER: The Hollow
OCTOBER: Mrs. McGinty’s Dead
OCT/NOV:  Hallow’e'en Party

1939:
MARCH/APRIL: The Big Four
MAY: The Clocks

1946:
APRIL: The Labours of Hercules

1949:
OCTOBER: Curtain: Poirot's Last Case
(denouement in February 1950)  



The only explicit references I've ignored are:

1) The year of The ABC Murders, as visible in the letters to Poirot (1936). Months and dates kept.

2) The month of the calendar at the police station in Murder on the Links, stating 'Mercredi 18 Mai' (Wednesday 18 May), barely noticeable on screen. Date and year kept.

3) The year stated Carlotta's letter in Lord Edgware Dies (1936). Date and month kept.

P.S. See the posts 'Episodes without References', '1936 - a spot of bother' and 'The Hastings Storyline' to learn how I've made some of the more controversial decisions.

 

16 comments:

  1. Concerning Mrs.Mc Ginty's death, 1938 is the more likeable year of this Poirot's inquest. Two aspects which are linked to Mrs Olivers could confirm this possibility. First, in this story, she tries to adapt one of her own novel into a play. In The Clocks, it is a play she created which is played in the begining. As The Clocks is in series 12 and is in 1938 or 1939, Mrs.Mc Ginty's death is in my own opinion before The Clocks, that is to say in 1937 or in 1938. On the other hand, she eats some apples in this episode. In the novel Halloween Party, she was so tramautized by the discovery of Joyce's body she said she'ld never eat apple. As the adaptation of Halloween Party is in series 12, Mrs.Mc Ginty's death should be before this one as Mrs Olivers may not eat apple in the last stories. Of course, I don't know if the producers will take into account this point for the adaptation of A dead man's folly in the last series.

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  2. Just watched Mrs McGinty's Dead and it didn't have a WW2 feel. So many men and not one of them in uniform.

    There was one sergeant on the platform, who saved Poirot's life, after he was pushed in front of a train. The platform would have had many more soldiers going to and from leave during war time.

    Also none of the cars had blackout lights with most of the beam blocked out.

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  3. Thank you for this. I agree, Mrs McGinty's Dead is probably not set during WW2 - which is why I've placed it both in 1938 and 1940. Unless I have to make room for one of the final episodes, I'll probably place it in October 1938 in the end.

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  4. I know it hasn't been shown on television yet, but where do you think you will place "The Labours of Hercules"?

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    1. Before they started filming, I was hoping to place it in 1939, as the final case before retirement. But judging by the episode press pack, in which it's revealed that Countess Rossakoff and Poirot meet again for the first time in 20 years, I will probably have to place it in or around 1946, unless the references to time and setting are very explicit both in this episode and in "Curtain". "The Double Clue" would also have to be pushed back to the late 1920s or early 1930s (probably 1929-1930) to make it work. But I can't be certain until I've seen the episode and heard what specific references they have decided to include. In any case, it will be the final case before "Curtain".

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    2. Many thanks for the considered reply. Are you planning/envisaging that you will need to do any revision to the overall timeline after this episode, or (more realistically, I suppose) after "Curtain" next week?

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    3. Yes, I will probably have to revise the entire chronology after "Curtain", depending on how 'explicit' the references are. It will be easier to see where particular episodes fit in. Generally speaking, however, the chronology is set in stone by now. The remaining uncertainty at the moment is what total timespan they decide on (probably early 30s to late 40s), and how Hastings' backstory adds up (with Judith and Bella). It won't be perfect, because certain things just don't work (like the three references I've ignored in the chronology so far), but I hope the remaining episodes will fit more or less neatly into the time frame.

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  5. You have commented somewhere else about the remarks on the Andrew Marr show last year. I noted those as well. Wikipedia's list of Poirot episodes (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Agatha_Christie%27s_Poirot_episodes) states towards the end that "The LeMesurier Inheritance" would be "woven into the plot of 'Labours of Hercules'". That's stretching credulity a bit! As far as I can see all they have done is use the name (Lucinda LeMesurier is the girl with the jewels who gets murdered at the party at the beginning of the story!

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    Replies
    1. Yes, that was something of a cheat. The name (Lucinda LeMesurier) is the only reference, unless you consider Lutz' manipulation of Katrina's fragile mind a (very loose) adaptation of the madness element (but then again, that is supposed to refer to "The Cretan Bull", I think). A bit disappointing, especially because it wouldn't take more than a mention of the case (something like "I remember solving a case for your family when I first arrived in this country") to consider it referenced (if not adapted).

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  6. A reference to "The Cretan Bull"? Gosh! I hadn't thought of that one. You could be right. But, if you are, it is, again, very tenuous. The central plot is obviously a combination of 'Erymanthian Boar' and 'Capture of Cerberus' (for the characters), with a bit of 'Girdle of Hypppolita' (crime-methodology) thrown in. Then 'Stymphalean Birds' and 'Arcadian Deer' provide two main sub-plots. And don't forget the 'Foreward' to the "Labours", where Poirot talks to Dr Burton (he has an appointment with him in the TV production). Are there any other references I've missed?

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    Replies
    1. I don't think you have missed any of the 'explicit' references, but I've included the more tenuous ones I could find in my episode-by-episode review: http://investigatingpoirot.blogspot.com/2013/11/episode-by-episode-labours-of-hercules.html

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  7. Mrs. McGinty's Dead did not take place in October. It took place in the Spring, most likely April. Multiple times in the book, it states that it has has been 5 months since the murder, which took place in November.

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    Replies
    1. Yes, but that's the book, not the adaptation. The adaptation of Mrs McGinty's Dead was shot in September/October.

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  8. I have my doubts about The Cornish Mystery.

    When Alice Pengelley's coffin is exumed, the plaque on the coffin reads, "Died 10th July 1935".

    You have to stop and start the video over and over as dirt moves around but it is definitely a 3 and a 5 a the end of the year.

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