Saturday, 9 October 2021

Belloc on Wodehouse

Hilaire Belloc
"In the course of a broadcast I gave, as the best writer of English now alive, Mr P G Wodehouse."

"His object is comedy in the most modern sense of that word: that is, his object is to present the laughable, and he does this with such mastery and skill that he nearly always approaches, and often reaches, perfection."

"There is yet another perfection which I note in him. It is one which most moderns [sic], I think, would not regard as a perfection at all."

"Well! I differ from them. It is the repeated use of one set of characters."

"The English country house and its setting, the aged absent-minded earl, the young ladies and gentlemen with too much leisure or too little, too much money, or (contrariwise) embarrassment - the club of the young, idle, and very-much-to-be-liked young Englishmen of the wealthier sort and the immortal, vivid glimpses of suburban life - all these form one set of "property" scenes..."

"... If in, say, fifty years Jeeves and any other of that great company - but in particular Jeeves - shall have faded, then what we shall have so long called England will no longer be."
HILAIRE BELLOC (1870-1953)

First published in July, 2011.

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