The Ring of Thoth

A short story by Arthur Conan Doyle

A mysterious man lurks among the mummies of the Louvre. What strange secret is held by the Ring of Thoth?

The Ring of Thoth is a short story written by Arthur Conan Doyle first published in The Cornhill Magazine in january 1890. In this post, it’s read aloud as an audiobook by Edward E. French.


Mr. John Vansittart Smith is a student of Egyptology who travels to France to see some papyri in the Louvre Museum. Tired from his visit, he sits in a corner of the museum and dozes off.

When he wakes up, the museum is closed and he is locked inside. Trying to get out, he meets a mysterious man who seems to perform a ritual on a mummy.

The man shares his story: His name is Sosra and he was born 3500 years ago in Egypt.

He was a priest of the god Osiris and discovered a remedy against death.

He used it and shared it with his assistant, Parma. Furthermore, he wanted to share this elixir with his fiancee, Atma, as well. However as he was about to share immortality with her, he finds out she’s already dead.

In a flurry of despair, he sought to join her in the afterlife. In order to do that he needed to become mortal again.

Parma found the antidote to immortality but used it for himself, leaving Sosra immortal and stranded in life.

Sosra then realizes the antidote was in the ring of Thoth – but Parma hid it and has taken the secret location with him in death.

3500 years later the mummy of Atma is found by French archaeologists and repatriated to the Louvre. Sosra succeeds being hired by the museum, finds Atma’s sarcophagus and attains The Ring of Thoth containing the precious elixir.

At the end of this incredible story, Sosra accompanies Vansittart to the exit. Two days later he learns in the newspapers that a man was found dead in the museum entwined in the arms of a mummy.

The Ring of Thoth
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