Lady into Fox

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Lady into Fox
Lady into fox.jpg
Dust-jacket from the first edition
Author David Garnett
Country United Kingdom
Language English
Genre Fantasy novel
Publisher Chatto and Windus
Publication date
Media type Print (Hardback)
Pages 91 pp

Lady into Fox was David Garnett's first novel under his own name, published in 1922. This short and enigmatic work won the James Tait Black Memorial Prize, and the Hawthornden Prize a year later.

Plot summary[edit]

Sylvia Tebrick, the 24-year-old wife of Richard Tebrick, suddenly turns into a fox while they are out walking in the woods. Mr. Tebrick sends away all the servants in an attempt to keep Sylvia's new nature a secret, although Sylvia's childhood nurse returns. While Sylvia initially acts human, insisting on wearing clothing and playing piquet, her behaviour increasingly becomes that characteristic of a vixen, causing the husband a great deal of anguish. Eventually, Mr. Tebrick releases Sylvia into the wild, where she gives birth to five kits, whom Tebrick names and plays with every day. Despite Tebrick's efforts to protect Sylvia and her cubs, she is ultimately killed by dogs during a hunt; Tebrick, who tried to save Sylvia from the dogs, is badly wounded, but eventually recovers.

McSweeney's Collins Library imprint republished Lady into Fox in 2004.


In 1939, British choreographer Andrée Howard created a work of the same name based on Garnett's book for Ballet Rambert. Sally Gilmour dancing Sylvia Tebrick assured the ballet's enormous success.[1][2]


  1. ^ "Judith Mackrell on David Garnett's Lady Into Fox". the Guardian. Retrieved 19 March 2015. 
  2. ^ Oxford Dictionary of Dance 2000. p. 283

External links[edit]