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Author P. G. Wodehouse
Country United Kingdom
Language English
Genre(s) Short story
Publisher Liberty
Media type Print (Magazine)
Publication date 9 July 1927

"Pig-Hoo-o-o-o-ey" is a short story by P. G. Wodehouse, which first appeared in the United States in the 9 July 1927 issue of Liberty, and in the United Kingdom in the August 1927 Strand. Part of the Blandings Castle canon, it features the absent-minded peer Lord Emsworth, and was included in the collection Blandings Castle and Elsewhere (1935), although the story takes place sometime between the events of Leave it to Psmith (1923) and Summer Lightning (1929).

Plot summary[edit]

Lord Emsworth, keen that his fat pig, the Empress of Blandings, should win the 87th annual Shropshire Agricultural Show, is distraught when his pigman, Wellbeloved, is sent to prison for fourteen days for being drunk and disorderly in a Market Blandings inn.

The pig immediately goes off her feed, and with the vet baffled, Emsworth is in no state to listen to his sister Connie's bleatings about his niece Angela breaking off her engagement from Lord Heacham in favour of the quite unsuitable James Belford, who Emsworth himself always liked, being a friend of the lad's father, a local parson.

Emsworth, still distracted about his pig, is sent to London to have stern words with Belford; dining with him at the Senior Conservative Club, conversation turns to pigs, and Belford, having spent two years on a Nebraska farm, proceeds to impress Emsworth with his knowledge of pig-calls of all states. He teaches Emsworth the master call, the "pig-hoo-o-o-o-ey" to which all pigs will respond, and Emsworth heads home happily.

Falling asleep on the train, Emsworth forgets the call, but while talking to Angela in the castle grounds, is reminded of it by the sound of Mrs Twemlow's gramophone. He, Beach and Angela all try the call on the Empress, but to no avail; just when all looks black, Belford arrives, shows them how the call should really sound, and to everyone's delight the Empress tucks heartily into her food. She goes on, of course, to win the contest.



  • Pig-Hoo-o-o-o-ey was broadcast by the BBC Home Service in an adaptation for radio by Anne Pendleton and John Cheatle in 1940 (first transmitted on 7 September).
  • In February 1985, the story was adapted as the third episode of the BBC Radio 4 series Blandings, starring Richard Vernon as Lord Emsworth and Margot Boyd as Lady Constance.


  • The story was first adapted as a play for television by Rex Tucker and broadcast by BBC Television in 1954 and 1956.
  • A second adaptation for television (under the title Pig Hoo-oo-ey!) was broadcast by the BBC in March 1967 as the fifth of six half-hour episodes in the series Blandings Castle, starring Ralph Richardson as Lord Emsworth and Stanley Holloway as Beach. The master tapes of all but the first part were erased, and no known copies of this episode exist.
  • The BBC adapted "Pig-Hoo-o-o-o-ey" for television again in 2013, as the first episode in the six-part series Blandings. It starred Timothy Spall as Lord Emsworth, Jennifer Saunders as Lady Constance and Mark Williams as Sebastian Beach.

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