A Damsel in Distress (novel)

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A Damsel in Distress
First edition (UK)
Author P. G. Wodehouse
Language English
Published 1919 (George H. Doran/US
Herbert Jenkins/UK)
Publication date
Media type Print

A Damsel in Distress is a novel by P. G. Wodehouse, first published in the United States on 4 October 1919 by George H. Doran, New York, and in the United Kingdom by Herbert Jenkins, London, on 15 October 1919.[1] It had previously been serialised in The Saturday Evening Post, between May and June of that year.

Its plot revolves around golf-loving American composer George Bevan who falls in love with a mysterious young lady who takes refuge in his taxicab one day. When he later tracks her down to a romantic rural manor, mistaken identity leads to all manner of brouhaha.


The story was made into a silent, black-and-white movie in 1919.

In 1928, Wodehouse collaborated with Ian Hay in adapting the book for the stage. Hay, Wodehouse, and A. A. Milne invested in the production, about which Wodehouse said "I don't think we shall lose our money, as Ian has done an awfully good job."[2] The play, which opened at the New Theatre, London, on 13 August 1928, had a successful run of 234 performances.

Wodehouse was involved in adapting the novel as a musical in 1937. A Damsel in Distress is a 1937 English-themed Hollywood musical comedy film starring Fred Astaire, Joan Fontaine, George Burns, and Gracie Allen. With a screenplay by P. G. Wodehouse, loosely based on his novel of the same name, music and lyrics by George and Ira Gershwin, it is directed by George Stevens.

A Damsel in Distress was adapted from the 1937 musical comedy film into a stage musical and performed from 30 May to 27 June 2015 at Chichester Festival Theatre.[3]


  1. ^ McIlvaine, E., Sherby, L.S. and Heineman, J.H. (1990) P.G. Wodehouse: A comprehensive bibliography and checklist. New York: James H. Heineman, pp. 35-36. ISBN 087008125X
  2. ^ Jasen, David A (1986), A Bibliography and Reader's Guide to the First Editions of P G Wodehouse (2nd ed.), London: Greenhill Books, p. 114, ISBN 0-947898-18-2 
  3. ^ "A Damsel in Distress". Chichester Festival Theatre. Retrieved 25 January 2018. 

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