(Aronson 2) Being from Edinburgh, Stevenson was surrounded with the well-known tales of the past and a history of duality in his hometown. Deacon Brodie and Dr. Knox were both from Edinburgh and both lived “double-lives”, this undoubtedly had a major impact upon Stevenson’s imagination and later his writings. (Stefan 5)
“While growing up Stevenson had a friend and the son of Sir James Simpson, the developer of medical anesthesia, the two friends would “experiment” with chloroform, for the enjoyment of it.” (Stefan 5) This experimenting carries a familiarity with it that would later be found in the character of Dr. Jekyll in Stevenson’s novel, where Dr. Jekyll tells in the letter upon his death that he began turning himself into Mr. Hyde
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Stevenson agreed, encouraged by his father's promise to give him £1,000 if he passed the bar exam.” (Aronson 2) “While still a student, Stevenson had a dream were he was living a double life and witness as he said, “monstrous malformations” (Mills 4) “Although Stevenson would often leave Edinburgh to escape his psychological pains, the duality in this conflict continued to haunt him.” (Stefan 5) Stevenson went to France in order to recover from yet another illness, while in France he met an American woman and began to see her, even though Stevenson knew she was still married and had two children. (Aronson 2) Stevenson and more so his parents, saw the duality in this. “Stevenson returned to Grez in 1877. He was not practicing law, nor was he earning much from his writing, having published less than ten essays in 1876. He was financially dependent on his parents, who were shocked to learn that he was courting a married woman.” (Aronson 2) Stevenson was showing love, but at the same time he was committing an act of evil. After difficult circumstances and chasing his love half way around the world, Stevenson married the woman and came back to his home in Edinburgh. (Aronson 2) One morning in the fall of 1885, Stevenson had a nightmare that his wife woke him from. He was upset that his wife had awoken him, but soon after began writing The Strange Case of Dr.