Dorothy L. Sayers

Standard Name: Sayers, Dorothy L.
Birth Name: Dorothy Leigh Sayers
Pseudonym: H. P. Rallentando
DLS is best-known as a pre-second-world-war detective novelist, particularly as the creator of Lord Peter Wimsey and Harriet Vane. But the financial success she enjoyed from these novels permitted her to turn to other genres and topics later in her career, including plays and radio dramas on religious themes, other Christian writings, and an important translation of Dante .
Brabazon, James. Dorothy L. Sayers. Charles Scribner’s Sons, 1981.
She also wrote poetry and reviews.
Black-and-white photo of Dorothy L. Sayers. Seated and looking off-camera with a slight smile, she wears large circular earrings and a dark            blazer.
"Dorothy L. Sayers" by Topical Press Agency/Stringer, 1928-11-01. Retrieved from This image is licensed under the GETTY IMAGES CONTENT LICENCE AGREEMENT.
Bronze statue of Dorothy L. Sayers in Witham, England.
"Dorothy L. Sayers" This work is licensed under the Creative Commons CC0 1.0 Universal (CC0 1.0) Public Domain Dedication license. This work is in the public domain.


Connections Sort descending Author name Excerpt
Anthologization Naomi Royde-Smith
Tales of Nightmare and the Borderland of the Mind, edited by Dorothy L. Sayers in 1929, included NRS 's story Proof, which is available online on sites specialising in horror fiction, and is...
Cultural formation Doreen Wallace
By the time DW became a student at Oxford she was a convinced unbeliever, given to stubborn argument with the Christian Dorothy L. Sayers .
Leonardi, Susan J. Dangerous by Degrees: Women at Oxford and the Somerville College Novelists. Rutgers University Press, 1989.
She admired the historical fine man from Nazareth called...
Education Doreen Wallace
At Somerville DW became a close friend of Dorothy Sayers (their religious and political disagreements later drove them apart) and in her circle met Vera Brittain , Winifred Holtby , and theSitwells .
Leonardi, Susan J. Dangerous by Degrees: Women at Oxford and the Somerville College Novelists. Rutgers University Press, 1989.
Education Margaret Kennedy
With the onset of war, the town had largely been emptied of male students, making women a more visible presence around the university. Somerville had a tradition of turning out successful women writers; in entering...
Education Vera Brittain
Sh formed a friendship there with Dorothy Sayers .
Leonardi, Susan J. Dangerous by Degrees: Women at Oxford and the Somerville College Novelists. Rutgers University Press, 1989.
Education Muriel Jaeger
The BA course lasted for three years, but MJ stayed on for a fourth year, probably because of interruptions from ill health. At Somerville she formed friendships with Charis Barnett, later Frankenburg (whose autobiography, Not...
Education Barbara Pym
BP responded strongly to the intellectual and social opportunities available at university. In her diary (begun in in the year she went up to Oxford and continued for most of her life) she wrote: Oxford...
Fictionalization Doreen Wallace
She presented a copy of each of her books to her husband , inscribed: R. H. Rash, with love from the author.
Shepherd, June. Doreen Wallace, 1897-1989: Writer and Social Campaigner. Edwin Mellen Press, 2000.
But he and most of her family never read her books, though...
Friends, Associates Doreen Wallace
DW 's close friendships with Winifred Holtby and Leon Geach lasted until their untimely deaths. But that with Dorothy Sayers ended in estrangement on religious and political grounds: the final straw was apparently DW 's...
Friends, Associates Doreen Wallace
DW later cherished epistolary friendships with other writers like Giles Dixey and Roy Winstanley . She formed a close bond with another, Janet Hitchman , when, after reading her autobiography and sympathising with her struggles...
Friends, Associates Muriel Jaeger
MJ was a contemporary and close friend of Dorothy L. Sayers , who dedicated several works to her. They include a poem about the way their shared Oxford experience was vanishing into the past (Jaeger...
Friends, Associates Ruth Pitter
RP knew T. S. Eliot well enough to enjoy a courtly encounter with him at a bus stop, but she felt his great innovations had not necessarily been a good thing for English poetry, and...
Intertextuality and Influence P. D. James
PDJ followed the English tradition of detective-story writing that has continued from the 1920s and 1930s, a genre in which many women have held dominant positions. She spoke of her adolescent reading as influenced in...
Intertextuality and Influence E. M. Delafield
The genre of the Diary was widely imitated by writers in the 1930s. One critic has detected its influence in the details of rural household problems which intrude upon both love and detection in Dorothy L. Sayers
Intertextuality and Influence Monica Furlong
This book reflects MF 's wide reading and an impish sense of humour employed to help her and her readers live with the unacceptable. Each chapter comes headed by a very funny cartoon and a...


By late 1931
Twelve certain members of the Detection Club (including Agatha Christie , Dorothy L. Sayers , G. K. Chesterton , Clemence Dane , G. D. H. Cole and Margaret Cole ) published a collaborative detectivenovel called...
30 July 1935
Penguin Books issued its first ten titles: sixpenny paperbacks with a characteristic penguin logo.
9 December 2006-17 July 2007
The National Portrait Gallery in London mounted an exhibition of photographs of women writers, mostly novelists, from 1920 to 1960.