A Conversation for PG Wodehouse - Humorist

Performing Flea

Post 1


Wodehouse named his first autobiography (written in the form of letters to a young writer) after a hurtful phrase used with reference to him by Sean O'Casey. The Irish dramatist dismissed the great Wodehouse as "English literature's performing flea"; a taunt which brings to mind Milton's dismissive "Or sweetest Shakespeare, Fancy's child / Warble his native woodnotes wild". Warble indeed.

This excellent entry could possibly be improved by mentioning the fact that the phrase "Elementary, my dear Watson", a line from many Sherlock Holmes films, does not occur in the writings of A. Conan Doyle at all, but first appeared in one of Wodehouse's Psmith novels: Psmith, Journalist (1915). http://www.phrases.org.uk/meanings/elementary-my-dear-watson.html

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Performing Flea

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