Monday, February 25, 2008


One of the delights of reading P G Wodehouse's "Jeeves" books are the quotations and casual literary references - some of which provided me with my first introduction to Robert Browning as a teenager. In the Telegraph A N Wilson explores the Shakespearean allusions that are scattered throughout the books, and asks "Was Bertie Wooster a silly ass or a wise man?"

"The device of using Shakespearean quotation throws into relief one of the central paradoxes of the Bertie Wooster books. Bertie as narrator insists on writing himself down as a silly ass. Yet his own use of metaphor, and his own recollection of great poetry, is as encyclopedic as - well, as PG Wodehouse's."