Bertie Wooster – A Gentleman of Leisure

Bertie Wooster, one of P.G.Wodehouse’s best known characters, is still recalled with amusement by reading aficionados. Be it his inimitable slang, his fear of Aunt Agatha, submissiveness to Jeeves or his desire to help friends while being absolutely clueless on about how to go about it. Mr Moneybags with a heart of gold, he acknowledges to having not much in the ‘old bean’ (or brains). He is unique in the world of fictional characters. You empathize with Bertie Wooster when he wants to get out his relationship with Madeline Bassett or Florence Craye. And you are mildly amused as you know Jeeves’s real intentions behind helping him with it.

Wooster’s feelings towards Aunt Agatha are repulsion combined with fear, and he compares her to an owl in one of the books. Aunt Dahlia is tolerable as she is more forgiving and resigned to his follies. He is often assigned to get a relative or friend out of trouble, but ends up being ignored as people realize that Jeeves is behind all the brainy schemes. Though Wooster holds Jeeves in high esteem, he gets a nagging feeling if his servant is in fact trying to boss him! Therefore, Bertie defies Jeeves’s choice of dresses, but always ends up giving in. His tall points are the scripture prize awarded to him in the Malvern House and his write-ups for Aunt Dahlia on ‘What the Well-Dressed Man is Wearing?” Unfortunately, the former feat is refuted by his friend Gussie Fink-Nottle.

No one can afford to be Bertie Wooster in their real lives. However, anyone who enjoys P.G.Wodehouse’s writings is unlikely to forget him, his adventures or his idiosyncrasies.

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