The Flying Inn

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The Flying Inn
First UK edition
AuthorG. K. Chesterton
CountryUnited Kingdom
GenreSpeculative fiction, adventure, satire
PublisherJohn Lane (US)
Methuen (UK)
Publication date
Media typePrint (Hardback)

The Flying Inn is a novel by English writer G. K. Chesterton, first published in 1914. It is set in a future England where the temperance movement has allowed a bizarre form of "Progressive" Islam to dominate the political and social life of the country. Because of this, alcohol sales to the poor are effectively prohibited, while the rich can get alcoholic drinks "under a medical certificate". The plot centres on the adventures of Humphrey Pumph (see also the Humphrey pump) and Captain Patrick Dalroy, who roam the country in their cart with a barrel of rum in an attempt to evade Prohibition, exploiting loopholes in the law to temporarily prevent the police taking action against them. Eventually the heroes and their followers foil an attempted coup by an Islamic military force.

The novel includes the poem, The Rolling English Road. The poem was first published under the title A Song of Temperance Reform in the New Witness in 1913.


  • Bleiler, Everett (1948). The Checklist of Fantastic Literature (1st ed.). Chicago: Shasta Publishers. p. 76. LCCN 48006709. OCLC 1113926.
  • Clark, Stephen R. L. (2006). G.K. Chesterton: thinking backward, looking forward. Templeton Foundation Press. p. 65. ISBN 978-1-59947-104-4.

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