This is part of an ongoing effort by the members of the Blandings Yahoo! Group to document references, allusions, quotations, etc. in the works of P. G. Wodehouse. These notes, a work in progress, are by Neil Midkiff, with contributions from others as noted below.

 

MMMBMMMAMeet Mr. Mulliner was first published in the UK by Herbert Jenkins Ltd. on 27 September 1927, and appeared in the US published by Doubleday, Doran & Co. on 2 March 1928. The book is dedicated to the Earl of Oxford and Asquith. The nine stories had appeared in magazines from 1925 through 1927, sometimes in slightly different versions. Further details about the magazine appearances can be found at Neil Midkiff’s web page of the Wodehouse short stories.

Page references below are to the Herbert Jenkins original UK edition, in which the text runs from p. 7 to p. 312.


The Truth about George

First published in the Strand magazine, July 1926, and in a slightly abridged version in Liberty, July 3, 1926, but with one paragraph not present in other versions.


the Angler’s Rest (p. 7)

In both magazine versions, this is merely “the little fishing inn”; the name “Anglers’ Rest” first appears in “A Slice of Life” in magazines and books. The singular possessive version, as in the heading above, is how it appears in Meet Mr. Mulliner in both UK and US editions, but in this story as collected in The World of Mr. Mulliner it is corrected to “Anglers’ Rest” for consistency with most of the original story appearances.

[A new speculation, March 2022: Could the name be an echo of “The Fisherman’s Rest” in The Scarlet Pimpernel (1905) by Baroness Orczy? This inn at Dover is an important locus in the plot, although there is no one single raconteur there who rules as Mr. Mulliner does at the Anglers’ Rest. —NM]


the story-teller finished his tale and left, he came over to my table (p. 7)

Those of us who have read the Mulliner tales for years might expect “the story-teller” to be Mr. Mulliner himself, but in this, the first of the series, the term refers to the local doctor who had just left, and the “second man” is Mr. Mulliner. In magazines, it is “the other” who “came over to my table” which is clearer than the “he” quoted above from both book editions.


“Fishermen … are traditionally careless of the truth.” (p. 8)

Indeed the OED has citations, mostly American, from the nineteenth century of the phrase “fish story” meaning an unbelieveable yarn, a tall tale. Wodehouse is gently cluing us in that Mr. Mulliner’s stories may well be similarly incredible.


dropsy (p. 8)

Swelling of parts of the body caused by excess watery fluid in the tissues; the modern medical term is edema.

In the US magazine edition, “mumps” is substituted here. See Right Ho, Jeeves.


bought oil stock (p. 8)

Wodehouse had introduced Thomas G. “Soapy” Molloy, champion seller of phony oil stock, the previous year in Sam the Sudden/Sam in the Suburbs (1925).


a gin and ginger-beer (p. 8)

In succeeding tales of the denizens of the Anglers’ Rest, the drinkers are referred to not by name but by their choice of beverage, capitalized almost as a title. A Gin and Ginger Ale in “The Reverent Wooing of Archibald” (1928; in Mr. Mulliner Speaking, 1929), for instance, remarks on the disappearance of the tall, curvaceous, queenly type of girl of earlier days. This initial story has at least the germ of this sort of identification here.


“My name is Mulliner.” (p. 9)

We are told in “Came the Dawn” (later in this volume) that a Sieur de Moulinières came over to England with William the Conqueror.

The French word moulinières is feminine plural, for the women who unwound raw silk fibers from silkworm cocoons and twisted them into thread.


cross-word puzzles (p. 10)

See Sam the Sudden.


Eli, the prophet (p. 10)

See Biblia Wodehousiana.


stearine (p. 10)

See A Damsel in Distress.


crepuscular (p. 10)

An adjective with various meanings related to twilight or similar dim illumination or dawning enlightenment; also referring to animals that are active in the twilight.


plumbing (p. 10)

Any guesses for the seven-letter word?


poppet-valves (p. 11)

See Blandings Castle and Elsewhere. Wodehouse also mentions poppet-valve manufacturers in ch. 2 of Cocktail Time (1958).


disestablishmentarianism (p. 11)

The advocacy of removing any special control, recognition, or privileges granted by a government to a particular religion or church group.

The antonym made with the prefix anti- was popularly supposed to be the longest word in the English language during my school days. [NM]


she was all the world to him (p. 11)

Her voice is low and sweet
And she’s all the world to me
And for Bonnie Annie Laurie
I’d lay me doon and dee.

William Douglas: Annie Laurie


precious, beloved, darling, much-loved, highly esteemed or valued (p. 11)

It appears that George uses a thesaurus or book of synonyms so often that he thinks in strings of like terms. Diego Seguí found the source in Richard Soule’s A Dictionary of English Synonymes (1871). Richard Soule (1812–1877) was an American lexicographer.


moth-eaten whiskers (p. 11)

Also sported by the house-agent manager spoken to by Ukridge in “Ukridge Sees Her Through” (1923; in Ukridge, 1925).


“I love a lassie” (p. 12)

George is singing the chorus of a 1906 popular song by Harry Lauder and Gerald Grafton, but substituting “purple” for “bloomin’ ” in the third line and altering the last line from “Mary, ma Scotch bluebell” to refer to his Susan. Sheet music online from the University of Maine. Recording sung by Harry Lauder in 1913 on YouTube, in which Lauder sings “purple” in the third line.


“Yes, sir, that’s my baby” (p. 12)

George’s next song is more up to date; this is the title of a 1925 popular song by Gus Kahn and Walter Donaldson. Sheet music online from York University. Period recording sung by Gene Austin on YouTube.


“If you knew Susie like I know Susie” (p. 13)

Another 1925 popular song, by B. G. DeSylva. Sheet music online from York University. 1925 recording sung by Eddie Cantor on YouTube.


ninety-seven point five six nine recurring (p. 13)

As with other statistics quoted by Wodehouse’s “experts” this is not only absurdly precise; this one is mathematically illiterate. A recurring decimal fraction with infinitely repeated nines is numerically indistinguishable from rounding up, so 97.5699999…% is tantamount to 97.57%.


Gunga Din (p. 14)

A famous narrative poem by Kipling; see online text at the Poetry Foundation. Many of Wodehouse’s characters recite it.


putting the tips of his fingers together (p. 14)

Wodehouse regards this as an appropriate pose for various professionals when giving advice, including detectives (perhaps because Sherlock Holmes is described as doing it in five of the twelve stories in the Adventures), lawyers, doctors, and other specialists.


inferiority complex (p. 14)

A fairly new term in popular culture at the time, based on the psychoanalytic theories of Freud and Adler; outside of professional texts the earliest OED citations in print are from the mid-1920s.


suppressed desires or introverted inhibitions or something (p. 14)

Just enough vagueness is present here for Wodehouse to give a subtle laugh at those who were using the new terms of psychology as if by giving something a name it had thereby been explained.


a fee of five guineas (p. 14)

Equal to five pounds and five shillings at the time; see Ukridge. The Bank of England inflation calculator suggests a factor of 62.5 from 1926 to 2020 in consumer price index terms, so the rough equivalent would be £330 or US$450 today.


no Mulliner has ever shirked an unpleasant duty (p. 15)

Mr. Mulliner makes mostly positive claims for his extended family, but occasionally makes negative ones.

No Mulliner has ever taken a prize at a cat show. No Mulliner, indeed, to the best of my knowledge, has even been entered for such a competition.

“Came the Dawn” (1927, later in this collection)


choleric look in his eyes (p. 16)

See the Four Temperaments under phlegmatic at Right Ho, Jeeves.


All we Mulliners have been noted for our presence of mind (p. 16)

The first of the many claims made by Mr. Mulliner for all the members of his extended family.

There is probably no family on earth more nicely scrupulous as regards keeping its promises than the Mulliners

Later in the same story, p. 22.

one of those inspirations which frequently come to Mulliners

Later in the same story, p. 26.

All we Mulliners have been athletes

Later in the same story, p. 31.

though—like all the Mulliners—a man of striking personal charm

“A Slice of Life” (1926; later in this collection)

like all the Mulliners, he was as brave as a lion

“A Slice of Life” (1926; later in this collection)

Augustine, who, like all the Mulliners, loved the truth and hated any form of deception

“Mulliner’s Buck-U-Uppo” (1926; later in this collection)

The commercial interests of the Mulliners have always been far-flung

“The Story of William” (1927; later in this collection)

All the Mulliners have been able speakers

“The Story of William” (1927; later in this collection)

William turned, and being, like all the Mulliners, the soul of modesty

“The Story of William” (1927; later in this collection)

“I generally manage to keep my head fairly well in a crisis. We Mulliners are like that.”

“The Story of William” (1927; later in this collection)

As a family, the Mulliners have always been noted for their reckless courage; and Clarence was no exception to the rule.

“The Romance of a Bulb-Squeezer” (1927; later in this collection)

All we Mulliners have been good trenchermen

“The Romance of a Bulb-Squeezer” (1927; later in this collection)

the old canny strain of the Mulliners came out in him

“The Reverent Wooing of Archibald” (1928; in Mr. Mulliner Speaking, 1929)

Essentially a modest man, like all the Mulliners

“The Reverent Wooing of Archibald” (1928; in Mr. Mulliner Speaking, 1929)

like all the Mulliners, his personal appearance was engaging and even—from certain angles—fascinating.

“The Man Who Gave Up Smoking” (1929; in Mr. Mulliner Speaking, 1929)

The Mulliners are by nature a courteous family

“The Man Who Gave Up Smoking” (1929; in Mr. Mulliner Speaking, 1929)

It is characteristic of the Mulliners as a family that, however sore the straits in which they find themselves, they never wholly lose their presence of mind.

“The Story of Cedric” (1929; in Mr. Mulliner Speaking, 1929)

All the Mulliners are clear thinkers

“The Story of Cedric” (1929; in Mr. Mulliner Speaking, 1929)

Handsome, like all the Mulliners

“The Ordeal of Osbert Mulliner” (1928; in Mr. Mulliner Speaking, 1929)

Though, like all the Mulliners, a clear thinker

“The Ordeal of Osbert Mulliner” (1928; in Mr. Mulliner Speaking, 1929)

It has been frequently said of the Mulliners that you may perplex but you cannot baffle them.

“The Ordeal of Osbert Mulliner” (1928; in Mr. Mulliner Speaking, 1929)

as I say, we Mulliners are quick workers

“Unpleasantness at Bludleigh Court” (1928; in Mr. Mulliner Speaking, 1929)

gifted though the Mulliners have been in virtually every branch of life and sport, few of us have ever taken kindly to golf

“Those in Peril on the Tee” (1927; in Mr. Mulliner Speaking, 1929)

Like all the Mulliners on the female side, however distantly removed from the main branch, she is remarkably beautiful.

“Something Squishy” (as revised for Mr. Mulliner Speaking, 1929)

She … was fascinated … by the regularity of his features, which, as is the case with all the Mulliners, was considerable

“The Smile That Wins” (1931; in Mulliner Nights, 1933)

a clear voice which, like that of all the Mulliners, however distant from the main branch, was beautifully modulated

“The Story of Webster” (1931; in Mulliner Nights, 1933)

Sturdy common sense is always a quality of the Mulliners, even of the less mentally gifted of the family.

“The Knightly Quest of Mervyn” (as rewritten for Mulliner Nights, 1933)

like all the Mulliners, he was keenly intuitive

“The Voice from the Past” (1931; in Mulliner Nights, 1933)

Sacheverell retained undiminished the clearness of mind which characterizes Mulliners in times of crisis.

“The Voice from the Past” (1931; in Mulliner Nights, 1933)

Eustace, … like so many of the Mulliners, had a strong vein of the poetic in him.

“Open House” (1932; in Mulliner Nights, 1933)

Something of these feelings he would have liked to put into words, but the Mulliners are famous for their chivalry.

“Best Seller” (1930; in Mulliner Nights, 1933)

Like all the Mulliners, [Augustine] was at heart a man of reckless courage.

“Gala Night” (1930; in Mulliner Nights, 1933)

Like all the Mulliners, my distant connection Wilmot had always been a scrupulously temperate man.

“The Nodder” (1933; in Blandings Castle and Elsewhere, 1935)

Like all the Mulliners, his attitude towards Woman had until recently been one of reverence and unfailing courtesy.

“The Juice of an Orange” (1933; in Blandings Castle and Elsewhere, 1935)

All the Mulliners are men of spirit

“The Castaways” (1933; in Blandings Castle and Elsewhere, 1935)

All the Mulliners are the soul of honour

“The Castaways” (1933; in Blandings Castle and Elsewhere, 1935)

My nephew Archibald, like all the Mulliners, is of an honest and candid disposition, incapable of subterfuge…

“Archibald and the Masses” (1935; in Young Men in Spats, 1936)

anything in the nature of eavesdropping was as repugnant [to Mordred] as it has always been to all the Mulliners…

“The Fiery Wooing of Mordred” (1934; in Young Men in Spats, 1936)

Augustus, like all the Mulliners, was a man of action.

“The Right Approach” (as revised for A Few Quick Ones, 1959)


the work of a moment (p. 16)

See A Damsel in Distress.


To get to East Wobsley … change at Ippleton and take the branch-line (p. 17)

Wodehouse apparently enjoyed Paul Rubens’s 1905 musical play Mr. Popple (of Ippleton), in which you have to change to a branch line train at East Wobsley to get to Ippleton, where Popple raises rabbits. Wodehouse remembered these place names, reusing them in “Resting”, Mike, and “All About Shakespeare”. In this story the towns are named in the reverse order on the branch line.


Emperor of Abyssinia (p. 19)

Abyssinia was an alternate name (derived from Arabic) applied by foreigners to the Ethiopian Empire, which at the time of this story’s writing had shaken off one attempt by Italy at conquest in the 1890s, and was independent until a second war in 1935–36 resulted in an Italian victory. It was ruled by Empress Zewditu I (1876–1930) from 1916 through 1930, so there was in fact no “Emperor of Abyssinia” when this story was written.


Shakespeare’s dictum that a friend, when found, should be grappled to you with hooks of steel (p. 19)

A slight misquotation from Hamlet, in which Polonius recommends “hoops of steel”; see Shakespeare Quotations and Allusions in Wodehouse.

[Omitted in US magazine appearance.]


the machine which, in exchange for a penny placed in the slot marked “Matches,” would supply a package of wholesome butter-scotch (p. 20)

“You insert your penny. You … hope for wax vestas, and you get butterscotch.”

A Prefect’s Uncle, ch. 15 (1903)

Even a penny-in-the-slot machine treats you better than that. It may give you hairpins when you want matches, but at least it takes some notice of you.

“Ahead of Schedule” (1911; in The Man Upstairs, 1914)


A confused noise within (p. 22)

See Shakespeare Quotations and Allusions in Wodehouse.


George … took refuge under the seat … perceived feminine ankles (p. 22)

Later the same year, in The Small Bachelor, another George, George Finch, has a very similar experience: he is hiding under a bed when the first thing he sees is an ankle clad in a silk stocking.


Swedish exercises (p. 24)

See Right Ho, Jeeves.


the position of Robinson Crusoe when he saw the footprint in the sand (p. 25)

See The Girl on the Boat.


a full thermos-flask (p. 26)

The principle of making a double-walled bottle which is insulated from heat transfer by removing most of the air from the gap between the inner and outer bottles was invented in 1892 by the Scottish scientist Sir James Dewar; his initial vacuum flask was made of brass. In 1904 two German glassblowers developed this into a commercial product which they named Thermos. Their trademark became a household name for this and similar products, and here in 1926 Wodehouse is using it generically; the company lost their US trademark rights in 1963. But the US magazine appearance in Liberty calls it a vacuum bottle instead here, reserving “thermos” for George’s second song.

In both US and UK magazine versions, instead of “full” before the container, the phrase “full of the right stuff” appears after the name of the container. Possibly “the right stuff” was dropped for the book versions to avoid confusion, as some of Wodehouse’s characters use that phrase for alcoholic liquor. See The Inimitable Jeeves.


a sort of sizzling sound like a cockroach calling to its young (p. 26)

The rich contralto of a female novelist calling to its young had broken the stillness of the summer afternoon.

“Mr. Potter Takes a Rest Cure” (1926; in Blandings Castle and Elsewhere, 1935)

…there has always been something distinctive and individual about Gussie’s timbre, reminding the hearer partly of an escape of gas from a gas pipe and partly of a sheep calling to its young in the lambing season.

The Code of the Woosters, ch. 3 (1938)


Say it with music—that was the thing to do. (p. 26)

Irving Berlin wrote “Say It with Music” as the theme song of the Music Box Revue of 1921. Sheet music from Ithaca College. 1921 recording by Paul Whiteman and His Orchestra on YouTube.


“Tea for two and two for tea and me for you and you for me——” (p. 26)

Popular song composed in 1924 by Vincent Youmans, with lyrics by Irving Caesar, from the musical No, No, Nanette. Sheet music from Wikipedia Commons. 1925 recording by Marion Harris on YouTube.


“I have a nice thermos. I have a full thermos…” (p. 27)

George is fitting his own lyrics to the refrain of another song by Youmans and Caesar from No, No, Nanette. The original lyrics are:

I want to be happy
But I won’t be happy
 Till I make you happy too;
Life’s really worth living
When we are mirth-giving,
 Why can’t I give some to you?
When skies are gray and you say you are blue,
I’ll send the sun smiling through.
I want to be happy
But I won’t be happy
 Till I make you happy too.

Two-page PDF of sheet music refrain (opens in a new browser tab or window). 1924 recording on YouTube.


interest, elevate, and amuse (p. 27)

See Leave It to Psmith.


“Hard-Hearted Hanna, the Vamp from Savannah” (p. 28)

Thus in UK book; US and UK magazines and US book have the correct spelling “Hannah” but the original sheet music gives the title as “Hard Hearted Hannah (The Vamp Of Savannah).” This 1924 song in ragtime rhythms is by Jack Yellen, Milton Ager, Bob Bigelow, and Chas. Bates. It would indeed be difficult to fit new words to its tricky rhythms. A recent piano-vocal performance with the sheet music displayed on YouTube.


points (p. 28)

The British term for a railroad switch, in which tapering movable rails can be set to direct trains to one or the other branch of a Y-shaped junction.


rocketing pheasant (p. 29)

See Right Ho, Jeeves.


navvies (p. 30)

See Love Among the Chickens.


mob-scene which would have made David W. Griffith scream with delight (p. 31)

Griffith (1875–1948) was the producer/director of some of the earliest silent film spectacles with crowds of thousands on enormous sets, such as The Birth of a Nation (1915) and Intolerance (1916).


Guest Night at the Royal Automobile Club (p. 31)

Compare:

On every side, merry matrons sat calling each other names on doorsteps. Cheery cats fought among the garbage-pails. From the busy public-houses came the sound of mouth-organ and song. While, as for the children, who were present in enormous quantities, so far from crying for bread, as he had been led to expect, they were playing hop-scotch all over the pavements. The whole atmosphere, in a word, was, he tells me, more like that of Guest Night at the National Liberal Club than anything he had ever encountered.

“Archibald and the Masses” (1935; in Young Men in Spats, 1936) (found by Diego Seguí)

The US magazine appearance in Liberty omitted the clause, ending the sentence at “delight.”


It is difficult to say precisely (p. 31)

Magazine versions have an additional paragraph preceding this passage, here quoted from Liberty:

The behavior of his fellow traveler did nothing to allay the growing turmoil in George’s soul. She had sprung from the train, and was now standing with her arms around the neck of one of the navvies. In the intervals of allowing her tears to trickle down the man’s spine, she was proclaiming in a voice of extraordinary power and clearness that George was an escaped lunatic and had tried to murder her with a bomb.


sang-froid (p. 31)

French for “coolness of blood”; calmness, poise.


address (p. 31)

A now-rare sense of this word, having to do with the quality of being adroit, resourceful, prepared, ready and able to do something. The OED has only one citation from the twentieth century.


All we Mulliners have been athletes (p. 31)

See above, p. 16.


east as far as Little-Wigmarsh-in-the-Dell and as far west as Higgleford-cum-Wortlebury-beneath-the-Hill (p. 33)

These were such glorious examples of Wodehouse’s ability to mimic the extended style of British place names that they appealed to American humorist Will Cuppy, who in his 1929 How to Be a Hermit wrote of naming his little island shack:

In more literary moments I think of it as one of those P. G. Wodehouse places, but I never can decide between East Wobsley, Little-Wigmarsh-in-the-Dell, Lower-Briskett-in-the-Midden, and Higgleford-cum-Wortlebury-beneath-the-Hill.

Wodehouse himself revisited them in “Christmas in New York” (Punch, 23 December 1953):

I begin to see that there are certain features of the festive season in these parts which distinguish it from the f. s. in—say—Ashton-under-Lyne or such places as Little-Wigmarsh-in-the-Dell and Higgleford-cum-Wortleberry-Beneath-the-Hill.

Diego Seguí found the placename Wigmarsh in Shropshire, parish of Ruyton, northwest of Shrewsbury.


Lesser-Snodsbury-in-the-Vale (p. 33)

There is a real village of Upton Snodsbury in Worcestershire, and Wodehouse would appropriate part of its name for Aunt Dahlia’s local town Market Snodsbury as well.


known to its builder as Chatsworth (p. 34)

It was common for modest family homes to be named after grand country houses and palaces. Chatsworth, near Bakewell in Derbyshire, is the estate of the Dukes of Devonshire.


sentiments warmer and deeper than those of ordinary friendship (p. 36)

For two different comments on this phrase, see Laughing Gas and Thank You, Jeeves.


wife, married woman, matron, spouse, help-meet, consort (p. 37)

For help-meet see Biblia Wodehousiana.


A Slice of Life

First published in the Strand magazine, August 1926, and in Liberty, August 7, 1926, including a few phrases not present in other versions.


“The Vicissitudes of Vera” (p. 39)

Reminiscent of the titles of silent-film cliffhanger serials starring intrepid heroines, especially The Perils of Pauline (1914), but also The Hazards of Helen, The Adventures of Kathlyn, The Exploits of Elaine, and several others.

Wodehouse apparently associated the name Vera with actresses; he mentioned the name “Vera Dalrymple” as early as 1902 in “An Unfinished Collection”, and as late as 1973 in Bachelors Anonymous an actress named Vera Dalrymple is a bossy star who wants all the good lines. Vera Prebble is a parlourmaid aspiring to be a film star in “The Rise of Minna Nordstrom” (1933; in Blandings Castle and Elsewhere, 1935). Vera Silverton, another actress, appears in “A Room at the Hermitage” (1920; in Indiscretions of Archie, 1921). Vera Upshaw is the daughter of an actress in The Girl in Blue (1970).


the Bijou Dream (p. 39)

See Very Good, Jeeves. The Bijou Dream in the High Street near the Anglers’ Rest is also mentioned in “The Nodder” and “The Rise of Minna Nordstrom” (both 1933; in Blandings Castle and Elsewhere, 1935).


into his toils (p. 39)

Under his influence; into a trap. From the now-archaic word toil for a net or snare that confines a hunted animal. Unrelated to the word of the same spelling for hard work or labor.


“Into a lobster” (p. 39)

In all original editions except the US magazine, the indefinite article is italicized, presumably to depict Miss Postlethwaite’s emphatic pronunciation.


Jack Frobisher (p. 40)

The only other man with the surname Frobisher who is important to a plot is Major Augustus “Tubby” Frobisher in Ring for Jeeves (1953), a friend of Captain Brabazon-Biggar out East of Suez. Gwendoline Gibbs in Frozen Assets/Biffen’s Millions, ch. 4.2 (1964) has been reading a romance story about Captain Eric Frobisher of the Guards, who married the governess. In contrast to these heroic Frobishers, there is a mention of a divorce case of Bingley versus Bingley, Botts and Frobisher in Cocktail Time, ch. 2 (1958). More egregiously, Percy Pilbeam’s middle name is Frobisher in Summer Lightning (1929) and Heavy Weather (1933).

Other heroes named Jack include Captain Jack Cotterleigh of the Irish Guards, Sue Brown’s late father mentioned in Summer Lightning and Heavy Weather; Captain Jack Fosdyke in “Monkey Business” (1932; in Blandings Castle and Elsewhere, 1935), Jack Williams, rugby player for England in “The Fifteenth Man” (1906), and Jack Wilton in “Wilton’s Holiday” (1915). See also the fictional Jack Langdale in The Boys of Dormitory Two, which Marjory Jackson is reading in Jackson Junior / Mike (1909).


hot Scotch with a slice of lemon (p. 41)

This is Mr. Mulliner’s usual drink, mentioned in three of the stories in this collection, and at least two dozen times in later Mulliner stories. Bertie Wooster also mentions this drink at least once:

The short afternoon had turned into a rather chilly, misty sort of evening, the kind of evening that sends a fellow’s thoughts straying off in the direction of hot Scotch and water with a spot of lemon in it.

“Jeeves and the Old School Chum” (1930; in Very Good, Jeeves, 1930)


honest blue eyes … “nothing but the bare truth” (p. 41)

Wodehouse is again warning the reader that Mr. Mulliner may be protesting too much.


the toilet (p. 42)

That is, the dressing table, rather than a water-closet. See Thank You, Jeeves.


ills to which the flesh is heir (p. 42)

A glancing allusion to Hamlet’s most famous soliloquy; see Shakespeare Quotations and Allusions in Wodehouse.


Raven Gipsy Face-Cream (p. 42)

The Liberty US magazine appearance spells it “Gypsy” instead.


though—like all the Mulliners—a man of striking personal charm (p. 42)

See above, p. 16.


Cannes (p. 42)

Apparently Wodehouse’s first reference to this French Riviera resort city. See The Luck of the Bodkins.


wholesome, sunburned complexion (p. 42)

This 1926 story would have been written very differently even five years earlier. The upper classes had traditionally valued pale skin as the sign that they didn’t have to work outdoors like the agricultural classes. But as the South of France became a fashionable winter destination in the middle 1920s and celebrities like fashion designer Coco Chanel returned from there with bronzed skins, a suntan became the mark of those who could afford leisure travel to a sunny spot.


half-crown (p. 43)

A coin worth two shillings and sixpence, one-eighth of a pound. From 1919 through 1952 the coin had a 50% silver content. The Bank of England inflation calculator suggests multiplying 1926 values by 62.5 to yield a 2020 equivalent, so this would be approximately £7.80 in modern terms.


seven shillings and sixpence (p. 43)

Exactly three half-crowns in value, so the larger jar is only slightly more economical. Coincidentally this was also the price of the first British edition of Meet Mr. Mulliner in 1927.


“Jer mong feesh der selar” (p. 44)

A phonetic spelling (for speakers of British English) of the French phrase “Je me’en fiche de cela” which roughly translates as “I don’t care about that” or, more forcefully, “I don’t give a damn.”


the pip in canaries (p. 44)

Any of several respiratory diseases of birds, the avian equivalent of the common cold in humans.


ffinch-ffarrowmere (p. 44)

Our good friends at the Grammarphobia blog have a historical survey of this practice of using a double small f instead of a capital F. They even cite this Wodehouse story at the end of their article: That’s all, ffoulkes!.


Bart. (p. 44)

The suffix “Bart.” is short for baronet. Both knights and baronets are addressed as “Sir” followed by their given name, and their wives as “Lady” followed by the family name. But a baronetcy is a hereditary title, passed down to the eldest son, and a knighthood is not inheritable. See Summer Moonshine for more detail and history.


fiend in human shape (p. 46)

See The Mating Season.


vitriol (p. 48)

See Summer Lightning.


bounder (p. 48)

See If I Were You.


mot juste (p. 48)

See Right Ho, Jeeves.


the knuckles stood out white under the strain (p. 49)

See Cocktail Time.


induced this man with bribes to leave suddenly on the plea of an aunt’s illness (p. 49)

In Do Butlers Burgle Banks? (1968) Horace Appleby similarly bribes Coleman the butler to leave suddenly, pleading a father’s illness, and to claim him as a cousin to serve as a substitute.


H2O+b3g4z7–m9z8=g6f5p3x (p. 49)

Other than the chemical formula for water, the rest is gibberish.


well-known costumier’s (p. 50)

Later (p. 59) mentioned as Clarkson; see below.


a cross indicating spot where body was found (p. 50)

See A Damsel in Distress.


a cast in one eye (p. 51)

A slight squint, or a turning of the eye a little to one side.

[John Peters] was not a particularly successful beamer, being hampered by a cast in one eye which gave him a truculent and sinister look.…

The Girl on the Boat, ch. 8.1 (1922)

“There was a copper with a cast in one eye who kept pinching [Balsam] for street betting.”

A Pelican at Blandings, ch. 6.1 (1969)


like all the Mulliners, he was as brave as a lion (p. 51)

See above, p. 16.


stiffish oxygen and potassium (p. 53)

Once again, chemical gibberish. Potassium in its pure form is highly reactive, a soft metal that easily cuts with a knife. If dropped into water, it combines so readily with the oxygen in the water that the hydrogen is freed and set ablaze by the heat generated as the potassium is oxidized. YouTube video showing potassium metal added to water.


sold in America as champagne (p. 53)

It was not only in America that counterfeit wines were marketed. In Wodehouse’s early journalism career, an item in the “By the Way” column in the Globe newspaper, June 13, 1903, noted that “The manufacture of weird wines is becoming quite an art.” The reference is to The Lancet of the same date, in an article called “Fictitious Wines: Some Interesting Recipes.”


Esquimaux (p. 54)

See Young Men in Spats.


If he can get at the port (p. 56)

Port, both sweeter and more strongly alcoholic than red table wine, was usually reserved for an after-dinner treat for the men at the dinner table after the ladies had withdrawn to the drawing room. The butler, of course, would have access to port whenever he wanted, and many of Wodehouse’s butlers are described as enjoying it themselves. It would be an unusually lax household in which a valet would get the chance to have port with his luncheon.


a third and supplementary chin (p. 56)

See Very Good, Jeeves.


Clarkson (p. 59)

Willy Clarkson (1861–1934), wigmaker and costume designer, took over his father’s business (founded 1833) in 1878.


“Give me that key, you Fiend.”
“ffiend,” corrected Sir Jasper (p. 59)

The US magazine editor or typesetter somewhat spoiled the joke by failing to capitalize “fiend” in the first sentence.


special licence (p. 59)

See Thank You, Jeeves.


Wilfred staggered, and would have fallen (p. 61)

See Ice in the Bedroom.


piebald (p. 62)

Originally referring to a horse or other animal with black and white patches in its coat; more generally, meaning particolored, as explained in her case in the next paragraph.


upper-cut (p. 62)

A boxing blow delivered in an upwards direction, as to the jaw.


the skin you loved to touch (p. 62)

The J. Walter Thompson advertising agency created the slogan “a skin you love to touch” in 1911 for Woodbury’s Facial Soap; by the later 1920s the ads touted “the skin you love to touch.” The slogan was used for many decades, and its trademark registration expired as late as 1994. Sample advertising pages from 1915 and 1924.


Ponto, my little dog (p. 62)

Wodehouse uses this name in at least two ways: as a name for a faithful dog, and in the phrase “since Ponto was a pup.” The name is derived from Spanish and is often applied to a pointer, as in The Pickwick Papers by Dickens, ch. 2.

“I haven’t been to Rector’s since Ponto was a pup.”

The Prince and Betty, ch. 4 (US edition, 1912)

Your annotator has always assumed that this was a classical reference to a dog of antiquity, but searches have so far been unavailing. Indeed, the earliest instances of this phrase so far found have all been from Wodehouse in 1912–1913. Diego Seguí found a similar phrase, “since Heck was a pup” in use since 1908 at least, and found in such famous works as Babbitt (1922) by Sinclair Lewis. It is tempting to speculate that Wodehouse knew this phrase and changed “Heck” to “Ponto”; without additional data this must remain purely a conjecture.

I descended the steep cliffside to the cave on the left of the bay, where, guarded by the faithful Ponto, I was accustomed to disrobe…

Margaret Goodwin, preparing to swim in Not George Washington, ch. 1 (1907)

“I meditate on my faithful dog, Ponto, and wish that I had kicked him overnight.”

“The Sluggard” (1914)

poor old Ponto, who had recently handed in his portfolio after holding office for ten years as the Willoughby family dog

“The Awakening of Rollo Podmarsh” (1923; in The Heart of a Goof, 1926)

“…a tombstone with ‘To Ponto, Ever a Faithful Friend’ on it. Where they buried a dog, I guess.”

Money in the Bank, ch. 14 (1942)


four shillings the medium-sized bottle (p. 63)

Further proof that “Wilfred never forgot that he was a business man” (p. 43). Surely any other man would have supplied the remedy as a gift to his sweetheart rather than mentioning its retail price.


Reduc-o, the recognised specific (p. 63)

Presumably the hyphen in the name is meant to influence the pronunciation to a soft “c” as in “reduce.” A specific is a remedy for a particular disease or symptom, especially a name-branded or patent medicine.

Wodehouse liked to create names ending in -o for his fictional specifics, including Nervino in The Little Warrior/Jill the Reckless (1920), Peppo in “Ukridge Rounds a Nasty Corner” (1924), Ease-o later in this story (p. 66), and of course Buck-U-Uppo in the next story. See Hot Water for more.


Sir Jasper’s weight is down under the fifteen stone (p. 66)

Fifteen stone (at 14 pounds per stone) is equal to 210 pounds. Ian Michaud notes that in the magazine versions, both US and UK, his weight is down under the two hundred pounds, which is a greater reduction from 217 pounds than the fifteen stone mentioned in both US and UK book editions.


rung out a blither peal (p. 66)

“All ended happily, and never had the wedding bells in the old village church rung out a blither peal than they did at the subsequent union.”

Three Men and a Maid/The Girl on the Boat, ch. 15/16 (1922).


preparatory school … Eton (p. 67)

See Thank You, Jeeves.


Mulliner’s Buck-U-Uppo

First published in a slightly cut version in Liberty, September 4, 1926 (but with a paragraph about bad boy Tom Poffley not present in other versions), and in the Strand magazine, November 1926. In both US and UK book editions of Meet Mr. Mulliner, the title is shown on the contents page as Mulliner’s Buck-u-Uppo, but these are the only places so far found where the central "U" is not capitalized, other than the erroneous entry in the McIlvaine bibliography.


Gilbert and Sullivan’s “Sorcerer” (p. 68)

The Sorcerer was the first full-length comic opera written by W. S. Gilbert and Arthur Sullivan for their producing partner Richard D’Oyly Carte. It opened at the Opéra Comique in London in 1877. See the Gilbert and Sullivan Archive for further details, including plot summary, full libretto, vocal score, audio files, and more.


Church Organ Fund (p. 68)

Frequently mentioned in Wodehouse as in need of contributions for the upkeep of what is after all a fairly complicated instrument, and one which can be damaged by cold, damp, mice, and other conditions frequently found in buildings like churches which are often vacant and unheated during the course of a week. See also the notes to Money for Nothing.

“These curates frequently have subscription lists up their sleeves and are extremely apt, unless you are very firm, to soak you for a donation to the church-organ fund or something.”

“Buttercup Day” (1925)

“You know, down where I live, in Wiltshire, the local padres always seem to have the deuce of a lot of trouble with their organs. Their church organs, I mean, of course. I’m always getting touched for contributions to organ funds.”

Sam in the Suburbs (ch. 34 of magazine serial)/Sam the Sudden, ch. 23.3 (1925)

The vicar had come seeking subscriptions to the Church Organ Fund, the Mothers’ Pleasant Sunday Evenings, the Distressed Cottagers’ Aid Society, the Stipend of the Additional Curate and the Rudge Lads’ Annual Summer Outing, and there had been moments of mad optimism when he had hoped for as much as a ten-pound note.

Money for Nothing, ch. 5.3 (1928)

“Many’s the time I’ve had an invitation to go and stay for a couple of weeks at some house and wanted to go and found out at the eleventh hour that they were doing A Pantomime Rehearsal or something in aid of the local Church Organ Fund and backed out like a rabbit.”

The Luck of the Bodkins, ch. 17 (1935)

You don’t hear it much nowadays, but at one time you were extraordinarily apt to get it shot at you by bassos at smoking concerts and entertainments in aid of the Church Organ Fund in the old village hall.

“All’s Well with Bingo’ (1937; in The Crime Wave at Blandings, 1937, and Eggs, Beans and Crumpets UK edition, 1940)

His theme was the Church Organ, in aid of which these grim doings had been set afoot, and it was in a vein of pessimism that he spoke of its prospects. The Church Organ, he told us frankly, was in a hell of a bad way. For years it had been going around with holes in its socks, doing the Brother-can-you-spare-a-dime stuff and now it was about due to hand in its dinner pail.

The Mating Season, ch. 22 (1949)

The current pest, he felt morosely, was probably the Vicar, come to try to touch him for a subscription to his church’s organ fund, and he had resolved to stay where he was and let the reverend gentleman go on ringing till his thumb wore out, when he abruptly changed his mind.

Pigs Have Wings, ch. 10.2 (1951)

What, he asked himself bitterly, did the fellow think this was? The revival of Vaudeville? A village concert in aid of the church organ restoration fund?

Ring for Jeeves, ch. 14 (1953)

I was reminded of the time when we did Charley’s Aunt at the Market Snodsbury Town Hall in aid of the local church organ fund…

Jeeves in the Offing (How Right You Are, Jeeves), ch. 15 (1960)

“I played the Usher in Trial by Jury once in my younger days. At a village in Hampshire in aid of the church organ fund.”

“Life with Freddie” (in Plum Pie, 1966)

“He wanted to cry on my shoulder about the church organ, which apparently needs vitamin shots and top dressing with guano and all sorts of things. But nothing, I told him, that a good village concert won’t cure.”

Do Butlers Burgle Banks?, ch. 10 (1968)

“I happened to be talking to the vicar, and he told me what a weight on his mind the church organ was, it being at its last gasp and no money to pay the vet.…”

Aunts Aren’t Gentlemen, ch. 16 (1974)


“Ah me! I was a pa-ale you-oung curate then!” (p. 68)

The refrain of Dr. Daly’s introductory song in The Sorcerer, “Time was when Love and I were well acquainted.”


beefy young fellows (p. 69)

A list of Wodehouse’s athletic curates is in the annotations to vicar … curate at A Damsel in Distress.

[Reference omitted in US magazine version.]


in-the-Midden (p. 69)

Rather an unusual ending for a place name, as a midden is a refuse pile, compost pile, or dung heap in northern British dialect.


meek and mild (p. 69)

Adjectives irrevocably joined in the minds of many who were brought up on the children’s hymn beginning “Gentle Jesus, meek and mild, look upon a little child” (text by Charles Wesley, 1707–1788).


in the ’eighties, or whenever it was (p. 69)

Actually 1877; see above.


heavyweight boxer (p. 70)

Depending on when the Rev. Stanley was attending Cambridge, this class would have had different weight limits. From 1884 to 1913, any boxer over 160 pounds in weight was termed a heavyweight. After 1913, boxers from 161 to 175 pounds were termed light-heavyweight, and a heavyweight was any boxer over 175 pounds.


apse (p. 70)

In church architecture, this refers to a semicircular recess at the altar end of a church, usually with a half-domed or vaulted ceiling above it.


clerestory (p. 70)

In church architecture, this refers to an upper section of windowed walls, admitting light to the nave (center section of the congregational seating), located above the roofs over the side aisles. Mr. Mulliner is probably not remembering the actual pumpkin debate rightly, as there would not usually be any place to locate a pumpkin in the clerestory, and in any case it would be high above eye level if put there.


Cupid makes heroes of us all (p. 70)

Diego Seguí notes that Shakespeare’s line “Thus conscience does make cowards of us all“ (see Shakespeare Quotations and Allusions in Wodehouse for other allusions to this passage) was adapted by Coleridge into “Conscience makes Heroes of us all.” Diego suggests this as an intermediate source for Wodehouse’s phrase above. An Internet search has so far failed to find any earlier citation for this phrase, so it appears to be a Wodehouse invention.


Augustine, who, like all the Mulliners, loved the truth and hated any form of deception (p. 71)

See above, p. 16.


orphrey (p. 72)

An embroidered ornamental design on a liturgical vestment or altar cloth.


chasuble (p. 72)

A sleeveless mantle covering the body and shoulders, worn over other ecclesiastical garb by the priest or celebrant at Mass or the Eucharist.


Boko (p. 72)

A nickname typically applied to a man with a prominent nose; see Ukridge.


You may remember that I once told you (p. 73)

In “A Slice of Life”, earlier in this collection.


vitamines (p. 74)

This is the original spelling of the word, coined in 1912 by Polish biochemist Casimir Funk, who thought that all the essential nutrients that fell under his classification were nitrogen-containing compounds in the class of amines. By 1920 it was recognized that not all vitamins were chemically amines, so the word lost its final ‘e’ and became vitamins as known today. Clearly Angela Mulliner has not been reading Wilfred’s chemical journals closely.

The Liberty editor substituted the more modern spelling vitamins in the US magazine version.


“Oh, dash!” (p. 75)

A substitute oath, for those who do not want to say “damn.” See A Damsel in Distress.


the dogs (p. 75)

“Dogs” as slang for “feet” has been around in US slang since the early 1910s; Wodehouse had used it in Leave It to Psmith in the voice of “Smooth Lizzie” when talking to her confederate Ed Cootes rather than in her poetess persona as Aileen Peavey.


cloth-head (p. 76)

The OED calls this a colloquialism for someone thick-headed; I have always interpreted it to mean “having no more brains than a rag doll.” The first OED citation is this Wodehouse sentence, but he had used it earlier as well:

“I’ve been wanting a shore job ever since I was cloth-head enough to go to sea.”

Hash Todhunter in Sam in the Suburbs, ch. 12 of magazine serial/Sam the Sudden, ch. 12.1 (1925)

Diego Seguí suggests a parallel with the description of Lord Emsworth as “fluffy-minded” in Something New/Something Fresh.


concrete skull (p. 76)

See Very Good, Jeeves.


lip (p. 76)

Slang for impudence, back-talk, unwanted speech; OED has citations beginning 1821.


The meek shall inherit the earth (p. 77)

See Biblia Wodehousiana.


Mem: Must guard agst this (p. 77)

Two conventional abbreviations: memorandum and against.


beetle-wits (p. 78)

Not cited in the OED; this appears to be Wodehouse’s sole usage. Probably derived from the heavy wooden-headed sledgehammer or maul called a “beetle” as used in paving, demolition, and other industrial tasks, rather than referring to the insect of that name; the tool is figuratively used as “the type of heavy dullness or stupidity” in OED citations from the sixteenth to nineteenth centuries. “Dumb as a bag of hammers” might be the modern equivalent.

[Omitted in US magazine version.]


erasing the words with … a thick-leaded pencil (p. 78)

We use erasing today almost exclusively to mean rubbing marks off paper with a rubber eraser, but erase can also mean to obliterate, to block out so as to make illegible.

[Omitted in US magazine version.]


“Mashed potatoes!” (p. 78)

See Money for Nothing.

The Strand magazine version substitutes “Applesauce!” here; the Liberty version omits the sentence entirely.


hymn for those of riper years at sea (p. 78)

In A Wodehouse Handbook, Norman Murphy called this a “PGW blend of two services in the Book of Common Prayer, ‘The Order of Baptism for those of Riper Years’ and ‘Forms of Prayer to be used at Sea’.”

See The Order of Baptism and Prayers at Sea from the Church of England web pages.


a healthy tramp across the fields (p. 79)

The Liberty magazine version has a paragraph following this sentence which does not appear in any other edition of the story:

On his way through the village he held his head up, nodded cheerfully at passers-by, and even—an act that he had always longed to perform, but for which he had hitherto lacked courage—caught young Tom Poffley, the local bad boy, by one of his large, red ears, and, pinching it, informed him that, if he wanted six of the best on the seat of his corduroy pants, he could insure them by absenting himself from Sunday-school again. Then, whistling, went out across the country.


gaiters (p. 80)

Part of the traditional costume of Anglican bishops, clerical gaiters were protective leggings of black cloth worn over the shoe and lower leg, reaching almost to the knee, buttoned up the side. Their function was originally practical, because bishops historically would be riding on horseback to visit throughout their diocese. At right, the Bishop of Lichfield, from Vanity Fair in 1897.


dumb friend (p. 80)

See dumb chums in the notes to The Code of the Woosters.


forty-five m.p.h. (p. 81)

See The Girl on the Boat.

The US magazine version has “forty m. p. h.” here.


His eye was not dim (p. 81)

See Biblia Wodehousiana.


Pieface (p. 82)

A nickname given to those with a round, flat face or a typically blank expression. The house detective at the Hotel Cosmopolis, Timothy O’Neill, is called Pie-Face in “Paving the Way for Mabel” (1920; in Indiscretions of Archie, 1921). Occasionally the sobriquet is applied to otherwise anonymous members of the Drones Club in stores from the 1930s.


Great is truth and mighty above all things (p. 83)

See Biblia Wodehousiana.


bishop, his back to the fireplace … hearth-rug (p. 84)

See The Code of the Woosters.


dickey (p. 85)

A false shirt-front and collar, worn under a jacket or dress coat to give the impression of wearing a full shirt.


harlequin (p. 87)

A character from Italian commedia dell’arte and theatrical traditions derived from it such as English pantomime, depicted as playful, nimble, and mischievous. An 1813 citation in the OED mentions “a harlequin-leap through a window.”


sported on the green (p. 88)

See Ukridge.


inked darts (p. 88)

See Right Ho, Jeeves.


hotsy-totsy (p. 89)

See Hot Water.


“I can take them or leave them alone.” (p. 90)

Usually claimed by someone who protests that he is not (or is no longer) addicted to cigarettes, alcoholic drinks, and other tempting indulgences.

As a moderate drinker, you can take your liquor or leave it alone.

Alcoholics Anonymous (the “Big Book”), ch. 12

“If I were you … I would use every effort to prevent this passion for flinging flower-pots from growing upon me. I know you will say that you can take it or leave it alone; that just one more pot won’t hurt you; but can you stop at one?”

Psmith to Baxter in Leave It to Psmith, ch. 11.5 (1923)

“The newts got him. Arrived at man’s estate, he retired to the depths of the country and gave his life up to these dumb chums. I suppose he used to tell himself that he could take them or leave them alone, and then found—too late—that he couldn’t.”

Bertie speaking of Gussie Fink-Nottle in Right Ho, Jeeves, ch. 1 (1934)

I think you should watch yourself in this matter of neck-breaking and check the urge before it gets too strong a grip on you. No doubt you say to yourself that you can take it or leave it alone, but isn’t there the danger of the thing becoming habit-forming?”

Bertie to Spode in Stiff Upper Lip, Jeeves, ch. 14 (1963)


the most consummate address (p. 91)

See page 31, above.


second Sunday before Septuagesima (p. 93)

See Very Good, Jeeves.


Athenæum (p. 94)

See A Damsel in Distress.


a good woman is a wondrous creature (p. 94)

Elin Woodger found this for Norman Murphy’s A Wodehouse Handbook, vol. 2, in an 1839 letter from Tennyson to Emily Sellwood, quoted in The Life and Works of Alfred, Lord Tennyson, vol. 1. The original is very slightly different:

A good woman is a wondrous creature, cleaving to the right and the good in all change, lovely in her youthful comeliness, lovely all her life long in comeliness of heart.


as a jewel of gold in a swine’s snout (p. 95)

See Biblia Wodehousiana.


lobelia (p. 96)

See Leave It to Psmith.


lorgnette (p. 97)

See Summer Lightning.


episcopal (p. 97)

Belonging to or related to the office of a bishop.


jollied her along (p. 97)

Slang for “treated her pleasantly, encouraged her to stay in good humor.”


whistled a few bars of the psalm appointed for the twenty-sixth of June (p. 100)

See Biblia Wodehousiana.

Over the years there have been many musical settings of the psalms, so it is unclear which tune that Augustus would have been whistling.

The Psalter in the Book of Common Prayer is intended to be read through in each month, so it would be the same on the twenty-sixth of January or December as it was for the twenty-sixth of June.

The Morning Prayer for the 26th day begins with Psalm 119:105, “Thy word is a lantern unto my feet: and a light unto my paths” and continues through the psalm. The Evening Prayer for the day concludes with the last verse, Psalm 119:176, “I have gone astray like a sheep that is lost: O seek thy servant, for I do not forget thy commandments.”


C.O.D. (p. 101)

Cash On Delivery, in which the recipient of a parcel pays the carrier upon receiving ordered goods; the carrier then returns the payment (perhaps minus a small fee) to the shipper.


Blessed shall be thy basket and thy store (p. 101)

See Biblia Wodehousiana.


The Bishop’s Move

First published in a slightly abridged version in Liberty, August 20, 1927, and in the Strand magazine, September 1927.


Came the Dawn

First published in a slightly abridged version in Liberty, June 11, 1927, and in the Strand magazine, July 1927.


The Story of William

First published as “It Was Only a Fire” in a slightly abridged version in Liberty, April 9, 1927, and in the Strand magazine, May 1927.


The commercial interests of the Mulliners have always been far-flung (p. 172)

See above, p. 16.


All the Mulliners have been able speakers (p. 173)

See above, p. 16.


William turned, and being, like all the Mulliners, the soul of modesty (p. 196)

See above, p. 16.


“I generally manage to keep my head fairly well in a crisis. We Mulliners are like that.” (p. 198)

See above, p. 16.


Portrait of a Disciplinarian

First published in a slightly abridged version in Liberty, September 24, 1927, and in the Strand magazine, October 1927.


The Romance of a Bulb-Squeezer

First published in the Strand magazine, March 1927, and in a slightly abridged version in Liberty, March 12, 1927, with a few phrases not present in other versions.


As a family, the Mulliners have always been noted for their reckless courage; and Clarence was no exception to the rule. (p. 251)

See above, p. 16.


All we Mulliners have been good trenchermen (p. 256)

See above, p. 16.


Honeysuckle Cottage

First published in the Saturday Evening Post, January 24, 1925, and in the Strand magazine, February 1925, with a different introduction in which the narrator and James Rodman speak of ghosts and goats. Mr. Mulliner frame added for Meet Mr. Mulliner, but the Anglers’ Rest and its circle of drinkers are not mentioned.

Annotations to this story appear as endnotes to the Saturday Evening Post transcription on this site.

Wodehouse’s writings are copyright © Trustees of the Wodehouse Estate in most countries;
material published prior to 1927 is in USA public domain, used here with permission of the Estate.
Our editorial commentary and other added material are copyright © 2012–2022 www.MadamEulalie.org.