GENETIC JOYCE STUDIES - Issue 9 (Spring 2009)


My Life and the Erotic Hounds of Banba

Three New Sources in Notebook Z’ch B.03


Robbert-Jan Henkes and Geert Lernout




I. VI.B.3.054-056 and 062: Daniel Corkery, The Hounds of Banba, Dublin, The Talbot Press, 1920, 222 pages [RJH]


Who would have known, who could have guessed, who could have even remotely considered the possibility that the ‘peace and quitybus’ of FW 40.32, the ‘as ever as oft’ of FW 430.13 and the nonsequitur Q&A of FW 478.28-29 ‘Are you in your fatherick, lonely one? ‘The same’, ultimately derive from one and the same short story, On the Heights, from the collection The Hounds of Banba by the Irish writer Daniel Corkery, published in 1920?

Daniel Corkery, or Donal Ó Corcora (1878-1964) is now best known as the mentor of his fellow Corkmen, Frank O’Connor and Sean O’Faolain, the ‘second generation of Irish writers.’ Corkery was a leading figure of the Irish Renaissance, and he actively participtated in the Irish fight for independence, by deed and word. The Hounds of Banba, his second collection of short stories, is set in the Cork countryside, after the Dublin Easter Rising of 1916. The revolutionary narrator is continually on the run in these nine stories, hunted down by the police (the ‘hounds of Banba’). We see him very often fleeing in a hurry on his bike, which brings joy to my Dutch heart.

Corkery’s best known works are the novel The Threshold of Quiet (1917) and The Hidden Ireland (1924), a history of the rich tradition of Gaelic poetry. His plays The Labour Leader (1919) and The Yellow Bittern (1920) were staged in the Dublin Abbey Theatre. He is sometimes compared with Joyce: what Joyce does for Dublin, Corkery does for Cork, bringing it alive in fiction. But the two are contrasted as well: Corkery seeing Irish nationalism as a beneficient force, and Joyce being more of the diametrically opposite persuasion. Perhaps a review of one of Corkery’s works in which this comparison was made gave Joyce the idea to see what the competition was doing in Ireland.

Joyce read The Hounds of Banba around the third week of March 1923. The seventeen notes he made are to be found on Notebook Z’ch VI.B.03.054(c)-056(a) and 062(b)-(j). From the second story, On the Heights, nine; from the story Cowards and the story Seumas—I, one each; three from The Aherns, and five from The Price. Not much, quantitavely, but the quality is not bad at all. They are all suggestive of the Cork environment and ways of speech, ranging from words taken from the natural world, like shale, bog myrtle and ash sapling, to (presumably) typical Corkian or Irish expressions, like ‘ever and always,’ ‘she gave him his answer’, ‘peace and quietness’, ‘a slip of a boy’, and the word ‘now’ in the sense of ‘in a moment’ (‘Nell will be down now.’). Joyce crossed out and used 11 of the 17 notes, not including the uncertain items on 062(a) and (b). They ended up in Work in Progress of Finnegans Wake as on this chart:



peace and / quietness



FW 040.32

in the peace and quitybus of a one sure shot bottle

a slip of a boy



FW 042.29-30

slips of young dublinos




FW 073.30

up hill and down coombe

Yes - and less



FW 108.20-21

three syllabes less than his own surname (yes, yes, less!)

[a] broth [of a boy]



FW 211.15

for Jack, the broth of a boy

ever & always



FW 430.12-13

stuck to the sod as ever and oft

Are you —? / The same!



FW 478.28-29

‘Are you in your fatherick, lonely one? § ‘The same.’

now = fra poco (I)




Lost in WiP:

She gave him his answer



[Revered Letter 68]

[I’d give him his answer!]

ash sapling



[FDV 142.10]

[(or is it an ash sapling)]

a big slob



[FDV 211.12]

[the great big slob]


* It is hard to locate 062(h) now = fra poco in the Work in Progress manuscripts. There is one suspect ‘now’ in a manuscript stage in which also other orange-deleted items were inserted, although these, 020(b-d,) found their place in the Prankquean episode, whereas this ‘now’ is from the View of Dublin:

MS 47472-33 | +^while it was only ^+now and again+^ in our rear of our era+^ | JJA 45:119 | Fair copy (ink) (dated by Joyce 29 November 1926, but some insertions made at a later date) | I.1.*2/2.*2 | FW 014.23

Two more nows that could be taken as ‘in a short while’ occur on the following MS pages, but they don’t come with other orange-deleted materials from the notebook:

? MS 47482a-97v: Now she comes, a peacefugle, picking here, pecking there — | JJA 44:41 | First draft October-November 1926 | 1B.*0/1D.*0 | FW 011.08

? MS 47482a-70v-71 | Now (he’d ^+for Dolph, Dean of idles+^ venite sine tute ^+sine mora+^ | JJA 53:18-19 | Second draft (pencil), July 1926 | FW 287.16


Index of the relevant emendations to VI.B.3.




(c)   above the inch

The Hounds of Banba 20 (from the story On the Heights): And so, instead of taking the comfortable if heavy road through the Pass of Keimaneigh, I made straight for Coomroe, facing the great walls of rock that enclose that most impressive of mountain glens. I have never heard that any other mortal ever pushed a bicycle up the one thousand eight hundred feet of jagged rock that hangs above the inches there; but I did it, how I do not know, unless it was the vision of that dogged face in the motor car that kept me ever pushing on and on and up and up.


(e)   Coombe

The Hounds of Banba 20 (from On the Heights): Feeling it all around me, licking and stroking me, and remembering how warm it had been in the coom, I knew I was making into a night of rain; and there are no wetter hills in the whole of Munster.


(f)   shale >

(g)   bog myrtle

The Hounds of Banba 20 (from On the Heights): Could I make the Coomahola river before nightfall, was the only question that would rise up in my mind, as I pushed my bicycle now over the shale and then through growths of fragrant bog-myrtle.


(h) tray (sleigh for / turf) >

(i)   bash sapling

The Hounds of Banba 21 (from On the Heights): I bowed my head to it in sheer hopelessness and that action it was that saved me. Beneath my eyes I saw certain light marks on the ground, not wheel marks they were not more than two feet six apart, and besides they were not cut into the ground. I was instantly following them. I knew what they were. They were the marks of a “tray,” as the peasants of that place call it both in Irish and English a sort of light sleigh on which they bring down the cut turf from places in the uplands that are too steep for horse and cart. These marks meant a house, sooner or later. With the greatest care I kept to them. And soon I began to come on other signs of human ways and strivings a cairn of stones, a first effort at a clearance, then a crazy sort of boundary fence, long abandoned to its own will, then at last two forked stakes in the ground, a young ash sapling laid across them, closing a gap. I blessed the human touch: the pious hands of husbandry had made it! Then I struck the path.




(a)   rever & always

The Hounds of Banba 24 (from On the Heights): But too late, too late. Three dreadful blows were struck on that partition towards which we were all looking, and an aged but vigorous and indignant voice cried out above the storm in ringing Irish:

           “Am I to be kept always in the dark? Ever and always! Look at me, and I for the last hour killed with listening to your foolery and dogs and giggling and the stranger’s voice stunning me; and ’tisn’t worth your while, Shawn, to come in with a little word.”


(b)   rShe gave him his answer

The Hounds of Banba 25 (from On the Heights): Shawn went into him, having first looked despairingly at his wife, who smiled back encouragingly. I felt I had not fathomed any one of the three of them.

           “He’ll be in his sleep in a moment,” she said to me in a whisper. “You gave him his answer.” She was more courageous than the man.


(c)   ra big slob

The Hounds of Banba 29-30 (from On the Heights): I’m sick and tired of him. But look, forgive me the welcome [29] I gave you: these times there do be men in plain clothes going from house to house, innocent-looking slobs of men, gathering up information, and that pair outside, I must be watching them. ’Tisn’t too much I’d tell them.” He repeated that solemn wink of his.


(d)   gravediggers’ strike

The Hounds of Banba 31 (the beginning of the next story, Cowards?): Rossadoon is a promontory on the Kerry coast. It ends in two blunt points that are not unlike the unshapely fingers of a giant's hand in a Scandinavian story, only that one of them, that on the northern side, is bigger in every way than the other, built up of huger cliffs, and so higher and freer of the winds and the clouds. Yet it was that northern point that the hardy people of old chose, when Christianity was still young in the land, to give to God, building their little stone church of four simple walls upon it, and burying their dead between that little church and the steep edge of the cliff. Of that early church only fragments of broken walls remain; hundreds of years must have passed since Mass was last sung there above the sea ; but the crowded gravestones, many of them too neat, too new, tell us that the people of Rossadoon lay their dead of to-day with those that died over a thousand years ago.

Note: Joyce apparently concludes from the contrast between the old and the new graves that the gravediggers have been on strike for a thousand years.


(e)   (St) Stephen’s Green

The Hounds of Banba 41 (the beginning of the next story, Seumas—I): When I struck on him he was shooting through the crowds in Patrick street, his pale, earnest, winsome face thrust out, his lips parted.

The Hounds of Banba 47: And then, I know not how, we drifted into an argument on the Church’s inner attitude towards republicanism. We had no facts to go on, and we found this out for each other after some strenuous hours. I also found out (he never would) that we were standing on St. Patrick’s bridge, that a cutting wind was blowing up the river, and that Seumas had been coughing the whole time. I persuaded him to go to his lodgings in Sheares street, that he was not needed in the club that night.


(f)   Are you —? / The same!

The Hounds of Banba 73 (from the story The Aherns): The house door was open. An old man greeted me: an oblique rectangle of sharp sunlight fell on the floor, reaching to his feet. 

           “ ’Tis,” he said; “you’re at the right house.”

           “And you,” I said, “are Humphrey Ahern.”

           “The same,” he said, cautiously.”


The Hounds of Banba 76: I was glad to speak of the publican’s part, of how he had helped me, as with the surety of instinct. I told of my leaving him, of my thankfulness. They lifted up, looking at one another.

           “He’s an uncle of Gregory’s,” the old man shook his head at his son.

           “Your brother?” I said. § “The same,” he replied quietly.”


(g)   +prick the garter

           Not found in The Hounds of Banba.




(a)   rpeace and quietness

The Hounds of Banba 77 (from The Aherns): “I declare,” I said, “’tis I will have to mount guard over you.”

           “I really thought I heard something ... only for that——”

           “If you rise again I’ll go out and sleep in the shed— I’d have more peace and quietness.”

           “But supposing you were caught here in our house.”

           “Lord! The Aherns would never recover from the shame of it!”




(a)   r+any dog’s quantity

? The Hounds of Banba 69 (from The Aherns): “How did you know what I was?”

           He smiled again, lifted himself, and gave his head the slightest little toss. I knew it at once; but must own that I had never observed it till then. Our lads use it at the courtsmartial when, asked if they have anything to say, they reply, as in a formula, “I want to say that I haven’t a dog’s respect for this court or its findings.” I had never observed it till then, as I say, and I was quite unaware that it could be observed in me in my ordinary moments observed, moreover, by a country publican ! He was smiling with a certain shyness in his eyes. I held my hand out to him.


(b)   perche ze percolo / (Kevin)

? The Hounds of Banba 76-77 (from The Aherns): I slept with Gregory that night. Even when we were alone, I sitting on his bed, he smoking the cigarette I had given him, I couldn’t win him from his reserve. I [76] got in first. His voice changing a little, he jerked out: “Are you sure there’s no danger? Couldn’t we mount guard? Jack and myself; ’twould be only a couple of hours each. He’ll be glad to do so; I know him.”


(c)   r+billydoux ^+billydoo+^

           Not found in The Hounds of Banba.


(d)   Lillis (Cork

The Hounds of Banba 129 (from the story The Price): Two young men stood suddenly before him. They had come through Moloney’s stabling yard, leaping over the wall into the little bohereen that led up to the hillside. He knew them. One was the Casey boy; the other was the schoolmaster’s son, Sam Lillis. They stopped up suddenly to find him in the wicket before them. “Oh !” they jerked out, and young Casey turned irresolutely on his heel, looking to see if anyone else were following. But Sam Lillis gave a sort of military salute :

           “Ciaran,—Ciaran’s after meeting with an accident.”


(e)   r+weekly insult / wages

           Not found in The Hounds of Banba.


(f)   ra slip of a boy >

(g)   r— (broth) —

The Hounds of Banba 130 (from The Price): The little crowd were at hand. The old man stepped outside the wicket the opening was a narrow one and stood helplessly by, bent down like the bough of an ancient tree.

           “Michael,” he said to Michael Keohane, who, he knew, was captain over them; “ah, Michael, he’s only a boy, a slip of a boy.”

           But Keohane, who for the past few years had had always more problems to decide upon than he was able to come at, had acquired a quick and somewhat hard way of answering such questions as took one no further.

Note: ‘Slip’ can mean ‘a young person of either sex, esp. one of small and slender build,’ as well as ‘a soft semi-lquid mass’ or ‘curdled milk’ (OED). Hence Joyce’s variation ‘broth’.


(h) onow = fra poco / (I)

The Hounds of Banba 131 (from The Price): But Tom was examining the unconscious face of his brother; his voice surprised his father.

“ ’Tis true for him,” he said. “Yesterday he was nearly killed with the piking. I felt sorry for him myself. Take him by the feet. Nell will be down now.”

? MS 47472-33 | +^while it was only ^+now and again+^ in our rear of our era+^ | JJA 45:119 | Fair copy (ink) (dated by Joyce 29 November 1926, but some insertions made at a later date) | I.1.*2/2.*2 | FW 014.23


(i)   r+Dev (alera)

Not found in The Hounds of Banba.


(j)    oYes - and less

The Hounds of Banba 140-141 (from The Price): She heard him laugh; but all the anxiety of the long day swept back on her at his words. He spoke again:

           “Your people won’t be against it?”

           “They’re all right; I’ll answer for them.” [140]

           “Could you have a place ready in an hour’s time?”

           “Yes, certainly, in less.”



II. VI.B.3.123-127: Albert Mordell, The Erotic Motive in Literature, 1919, 250 pages [RJH] can deliver it in one day if you want to, because the book is still being reprinted, and it is still in stock. Not because it is such a good book, but because there’s sex in it. No pictures though, in my 1919 edition. (I write this on the day that Dutch public televison will broadcast porn-classic must-have-seen-once Deep Throat.) The Erotic Motive in Literature is plain reductionist Freudian theorizing about what writers hide in their writings. The shadows the writers lay, consciously or unconsciously, over their deeper personal themes and motives, that they can only express in ‘symbols’, although these symbols might just as well be called ‘euphemisms’.

Joyce read only two chapters, chapter XI, Sexual Symbolism in Literature, and Chapter XIV, a Psychoanalytic Study of Edgar Allan Poe. As the notes indicate, Joyce was looking for a sexually charged vocabulary (symbolic/euphemistical) for the rendez-vous between Tristan and Isolde, still very much on his mind in this opening phase of his planned History of the World. Joyce even probes the possibility of having Issy’s dreams analyzed by Jung (063a), and this thought may have sparked his idea to look for psychoanalytic literature.

Does this new Book at the Wake mean that Joyce was interested in psychoanalysis? Only in so far as he could gather useful words and phrases. He only read or took notes from two chapters,  Chapter XI, Sexual Symbolism in Literature and Chapter XVI, Psychoanalytic Study of Edgar Allan Poe, and that last one halfheartedly, it seems, because the notes are not in chronological order, indicating that he skimmed through it from middle to end to beginning. Of the 250 pages of The Erotic Motive, Joyce actually read 39 pages, that is 15 percent, so if we take that ratio as indicative of his interest in the field, the answer to the original question must be: hardly at all. But dream-interpreting he was interested in, from his Zürich days with Frank Budgen on. Interestingly, Joyce only starts taking notes from this chapter when Mordell, in part III of the chapter, is discussing anxiety dreams of Chaucer and Ovid. From the very start it is clear that Joyce’s reading was utilitarian as well as ironical. His note ‘Is — her libido’ on 123(e) for instance was triggered by a passage in which Mordell explains the symbol of the boar in Chaucer’s Troilus and Criseyde. Troilus dreams of Diomede in the form of a boar, and Mordell, dutifully following Freud, interprets this as an anxiety dream: Troilus fears that Diomede will win Criseyde. “The fear that he experienced at day, that his sweetheart would be lost to him—the anxiety that his libido would be repressed, become an anxiety dream in which the boar is the symbol of his rival.” The joke, due to the clumsy way of saying (and the muddled way of thinking), is that the reader pictures Troilus, Terry Jones-like in his role of pepperpot or of Martin Luther, exclaiming: ‘Oh! I’m so scared my libido will be repressed!’

Quite a few notes on page 122 and 123 give the impression of being inspired by Joyce’s jouissance of his lecture of Mordell. Phrases such as ‘serial dreams,’ ‘Been here before,’ and even a fundamental notion as ‘Mum - letterwriter’ may very well be occasioned by the subject matter. But Joyce doesn’t forget his quest. He is explicitly looking for erotically charged metaphors, and when Mordell becomes too boring, he forges such words himself, sexualizing Mordell’s phrases currente calamo (in this context I should say ‘on the fly’), doing consciously what Mordell says writers do unconsciously. Examples are ‘Biggest possible’ and ‘showed kindness to’ – triggered by Mordell’s ‘one of the greatest love poems’ and ‘embracing and kissing.’

Joyce also notices that Mordell is very fond of the words ‘fact’ and ‘it shows’, especially when there are no facts, and nothing is shown. The less a critic/psychoanalist shows or proves, the more he will be inclined to stress that what he writes are facts that show something. Hence Joyce’s notes on 124(e) and (f), ‘complained of the fact’ and ‘the fact remains.’

In every language, every word can be taken to imply something obscene, and English is no worse than Dutch. Mordell quotes from scholarly works with lists of double entendres, and Joyce makes a small selection with words like ‘breadscoop,’ ‘sootpole,’ ‘beerkeg’ and ‘fire drill.’ Others are suggested by the context, like ‘ready rainroof (parapluie),’ ‘he keyed her’ and ‘(Trist) his acorn’. ‘To key’ happens to be the Italian terminus vulgaris (‘chiavare’) for the symbolical intent of Mordell’s ‘stuffing a cork in a bottle, or putting bread in the oven, or inserting a key in the lock,’ that is to If You See Kay, and probably Tristan’s ‘acorn’ is a symbolical rendering of the glans penis, mixing the Italian words for acorn (la ghianda) and gland (la ghiandola).  Curiously, in Dutch the word for acorn and the anatomical extremity under discussion is the same, ‘eikel,’ although this term is more often used in a depreciative sense, to denote, curiously enough, what the English would call an ‘asshole’.

Intriguing is 126(c) ‘Pop & Mum wrangle / re a road’, in which Joyce apparently equates Dr. Freud and Dr. Jung with two arguing parents (or ‘marents’, 130c), two years after his famous sneer about ‘a certain Doctor Jung (the Swiss Tweedledum who is not to be confused with the Viennese Tweedledee, Dr Freud)’ (letter to Harriet Weaver, 24 June 1921). Possibly the note has a different, as yet unidentified source, but I found this connection very convincing.



Index of the relevant emendations to VI.B.3.





(a)   Review of new / Irish Dante

? The Erotic Motive 193: We can still feel with Sappho and the Troubadours, whereas we find our intellect in-sulted by some of the religious ideas versified by Dante and Milton; although the passages describing secular emotions win our admiration.

(b)   serial dreams >

(c)   rBeen here before / (to I)

? The Erotic Motive 182-183: Nietzsche understood that the romantic life of our ancestors and their ways of thinking were repeated by [182] us in our dreams. He wrote in his Human All Too Human, Vol. i, pp. 23-26: “The perfect distinctions of  all dreams representations, which pre-suppose absolute  faith in their reality, recall the conditions that apper-tain to primitive man, in whom hallucination was ex-traordinarily frequent, and sometime simultaneously seized entire communities, entire nations. Therefore, in sleep and in dreams we once more carry out the task of early humanity. ... I hold, that as man now still reasons in dreams, so men reasoned also when awake through thousands of years; the first cause which oc-curred to the mind to explain anything that required an explanation, was sufficient and stood for truth . . . this ancient element in human nature still manifests itself in our dreams, for it is the foundation upon which the higher reason has developed and still develops in every individual; the dream carries us back into the remote conditions of human culture, and provides a ready means of understanding them better. Dream- thinking is now so easy to us because during immense periods of human development we have been so well drilled in this form of fantastic and cheap explanation, by means of the first agreeable notions. In so far, dreaming is a recreation of the brain, which by day has to satisfy the stern demands of thought, as they are laid down by the higher culture.”


(d)   +sleep between [buttered] back cloths

Not found in The Erotic Motive.


(e)   rvoiced

The Erotic Motive 185: If we have overthrown the authority of our fathers or experienced a painful love repression because we were hampered by social laws, if we have broken with our religious friends or been crushed by some moneyed powers, we may become of a revolutionary trend of mind and hence prefer writers with radical opinions. In our time there have arisen a number of geniuses who voiced such opinions ; having experienced repressions on account of the customs of society, they sang and wrote of those repressions and attacked those customs.


(f)   Ul not a Homer

? The Erotic Motive 193: Those poets live who have been most personal. The Roman poets, Horace, Catullus, Titullus, Propertius, Ovid, Lucretius, were personal. Even the Æneid reveals the soul of Virgil in the story of Æneas and Dido.


(g)   idiosyncrasy

The Erotic Motive 189: Literary historians and philosophers have accounted for the various changes in literary taste fairly satisfactorily, although they have often omitted from their investigations the factor of the personal experiences and idiosyncrasies of the author, and have emphasised too strongly the importance of the predominant ideas of the age.


(h)  thunderstorms / (pigs)           

           Not found in The Erotic Motive.




(e)   rIs — her libido

The Erotic Motive 160-161: Chaucer throughout his works attacks the theory that  dreams may be interpreted, but he gives us a true sym- [160] bolical interpretation in this poem. He also here recorded unconsciously some of his own past griefs in love. Freud taught that anxiety dreams were due to the repression of the libido being converted into fear. We also know from anthropology that the boar was a sexual symbol. In the poem Diomede appears to Troilus as a boar, also, because Troilus had heard the story of Meleager and the boar and of the ancestry of Diomede. Even though he had forgotten the tale, if he did, since he was reminded of it by his sister, it was still present in his unconscious. His anxiety was due to the fear that Diomede had really won Criseyde. The fear that he experienced at day, that his sweetheart would be lost to him—the anxiety that his libido would be repressed, become an anxiety dream in which the boar is the symbol of his rival.




(a)   rBiggest possible >

(b)   rshowed kindness

The Erotic Motive 160: In Chaucer’s Troilus and Criseyde, one of the greatest love poems ever written and probably a greater work of art than any of the Canterbury Tales, there is a true symbolic interpretation of an anxiety dream. Troilus was pining for his love, Criseyde, who had been led back by Diomede to the Greeks in exchange for Antenor. Troilus dreamt that he saw a boar asleep in the sun and that Criseyde was embracing and kissing it.


(c)   reveled in the / beauty of—

The Erotic Motive 164-165: When Wordsworth sang of [164] the beauties of nature he was voicing a cry for satisfied love which he did not have up to his thirtieth year, when he married.


(d)   r(Is) love of nature

The Erotic Motive 164: I do not believe that nature worship idea in literature has been yet fully analysed. Critics have refused to see the exact meaning of the expression “love of nature.” The poets themselves have told us that they saw in nature lessons of moral improvement and inspirations for humanitarianism.


(e)   rcomplained of the / fact

The Erotic Motive 161: The sexual symbolic interpretation shows that Freud’s most unpopular idea was known among the Romans. It happened that Ovid’s mistress did prove unfaithful to him and he complained of the fact.


(f)   bthe fact remains

The Erotic Motive 164: Granting that this is so, the fact still remains that there is much left unsaid by the poets. Some of them recognised the real significance of their love for nature when they told us how they were inspired by her to love, or were reminded of their lack of love.




(a)   one can enjoy art / two –– nature

The Erotic Motive 165: The poet was using symbols, such as trees and daisies, whose glory he sang when he meant he wished he had love. Some things can be enjoyed alone, though not altogether, such as food, plays, pictures, reading, music, lectures, etc. It is the great distinction of nature that she inspires human love and also provokes sadness.


(b)   Cynewulf’s Exeter Book >

(c)   Fred Tupper – Riddles / of the Exeter Book >

(d)   breadscoop >

(e)   sootpole (negro) >

(f)   rbeerkeg >

(g)   ready rainroof (parapluie)

The Erotic Motive 166-167: There is no better proof that common objects, when possible, were formerly assigned sexual associations, than the obscene riddles of the Exeter Book. This work is largely attributed to the second great English poet Cynewulf in the eighth century. Certain riddles are propounded which reek with lewd suggestions, and the answer is supposed to be some object innocent in itself; it is apparent, however, from the questions and descriptions given that the interest in this object is because it is sexually symbolical. Thus the answers meant for the 26th, 45th, 46th, 55th, 63rd and 64th riddles of the Exeter Book are leek, key, dough, churn, poker and beaker, respectively. The reader will note thus how [166] these objects had a sexual symbolic meaning for our ancestors. Professor Frederic Tupper in his scholarly work The Riddles of the Exeter Book says: “By far the most numerous of all riddles of lapsing or varying solutions are those distinctly popular and unrefined problems whose sole excuse for being (or lack of excuse) lies in double meaning and coarse suggestion, and the reason for this uncertainty of answer is at once apparent. The formally stated solution is so overshadowed by the obscene subject implictly presented in each limited motive of the riddle, that little attention is paid to the aptness of this. It is after all only a pretence, not the chief concern of the jest.” He quotes from another scholar, Wossidlo, a number of other objects than those suggested in the Exeter Book, which in other riddle books were invested with sexual symbolism. These are spinning wheel, kettle and pike, yarn and weaver, frying-pan and hare, soot-pole, butcher, bosom, fish on the hook, trunk-key, beer-keg, stocking, mower in grass, butter-cask and bread-scoop.

           Freud is apparently correct when he stated that familiar objects of our day like umbrellas and machinery are given a sexual significance by our dreams unconsciously.


(h) (Trist) his acorn >

(i)   he keyed her >

(j)    fire-drill

The Erotic Motive 168: He [Man, in former times] saw the life producing principle at work everywhere, and he found symbols for it in the phenomena of nature, in the sun, moon, water, forest, garden, field, trees, roses; in animals like the serpent, the horse, the bull, the fish, the goat, the dove; in implements like the arrow, the sword, the plough. Common objects assumed for him suggestive meanings. He saw a means of coining new expressions for generative acts and objects; he found associations when he used the fire-drill drilling in the hollow of the wood, or when he threw wood upon the fire. In later time he coined new symbolical terms suggested by such acts of his as stuffing a cork in a bottle, or putting bread in the oven, or inserting a key in the lock.




(a)   tree bisexual / m form fem gend >

(b)   rlove embrace

The Erotic Motive 170: The embrace of the lovers is described symbolically by means of the tree symbol. It is known that the tree was formerly used to represent both sexes. “The bisexual symbolic character of the tree,” says Jung in his Psychology of the Unconscious (P. 248), “is intimated by the fact that in Latin trees have a masculine termination and a feminine gender.” The lover in the Song of Songs calls his beloved a tree and says he will climb up to the palm tree and take hold of the branches; his beloved’s breasts will be as clusters of the vine and the smell of her countenance like apples.

           [...] Higher criticism has recognised the fact that the poem is a love poem. This is also proved by the fact that from time immemorial it has been the practice of orthodox Hebrews to read it on the Sabbath eve, which is the time for love embrace among them.


(c)   Pop & Mum wrangle / re a road

The Erotic Motive 170 (the beginning of the next part (VI), immediately following the previous quotation): Psychoanalysis has gone far, indeed, in seeing sex symbolism in many objects and ceremonies and allegories where it was least expected to exist. Freud and Jung, though they differ in their views here, see in many symbols concealed incestuous wishes. They have dealt with the subject in Totem and Taboo and The Phychology [sic] of the Unconscious, respectively. I have no intention of going into the differences between their theories.


(d)   bComes the question

The Erotic Motive 228 (about Edgar Allan Poe): Now comes a question that has always puzzled his critics: Why was the poet so occupied with the subject of death of fair ladies or of depicting a man bereaved by the death of his love.


(e)   he drank

The Erotic Motive 231: He [Poe’s creation, Roger Usher] also, like Poe, was no doubt thrice disappointed in love, and probably also drank. His symptoms were such as afflict neurotics.


(f)   rmy libido (Is)

Note: See the quotation at 123(e). Other, closeby instances of ‘libido’:

The Erotic Motive 229: All this shows the strong infantile influences on Poe in damming up of his libido.

The Erotic Motive 231: Poe had himself suffered from a damming of the libido.


(g)   John Hopkins Univ

The Erotic Motive 224-225: A poem [224] by Poe was only recently unearthed by Prof. J. C. French, of Johns Hopkins University, and printed in the Dial for January 31, 1918.



III. VI.B.3.134-136: Mrs. Patrick Campbell (Beatrice Stella Cornwallis-West), My Life and Some Letters, 1922, 360 pages [GL]


[introduction forthcoming]


Index of the relevant emendations to VI.B.3.



(e)        rIs gave her / jupon to beggar

My Life and Some Letters 5: A caravan, with my grandfather and grandmother, their children mounted on Arab horses! This picture was probably fixed in my childish mind by the following anecdote. My aunts, whilst riding, found a poor woman who had just given birth to a child by the roadside; not knowing what to do, they slipped off their petticoats and left them with her, to the dismay of the their mother when they returned to the caravan.

Note: F. Jupon. Petticoat. See 144(g).

Not located in MS/FW

(f)        they pray / before F --

My Life and Some Letters 7: My aunt Theresa, a light-hearted, merry girl, married an English lawyer, who piously on his wedding night knelt on the bed to pray. The gay Theresa, irritated by prayers said in such a way at such a time, pushed him off the bed onto the floor. Her wedding night was spent in tears ….

Note: See VI.A.721.35.

(g)        rbird feed from //


(a)        rher lips, paint / her feet

My Life and Some Letters 7:  Svoboda was always painting my Aunt Stella; especially her feet, which were very lovely. The marriage was not happy; Svoboda was intensely jealous. Aunt Stella had a bird, which she used to feed from her lips. One day this infuriated Svoboda, who, in a fit of jealousy, wrung the bird’s neck before her eyes….

MS 47478-299, MT of insert: May the bridies feed the sweetnesses no more ^+moremirror+^ mornings from my ^+lisp–+^lips, Pipette | JJA 52:256 | 1934-7 | II.2§5.2|-/7.3|- | FDV 156n64

(b)        othey call her B—

My Life and Some Letters 18-19:  The house was full of children. These cousins of mine I fancy had been spoiled by ayahs—we were a strange medley of bickering brats, and ((18)) someone called me the “Ugly Duckling,” and ugly I believed I was.

MS 47472-151, TsILA: A railway barmaid’s view ^+(they call her Spilltears Ruth)+^ | JJA 45:190 | 1927 | I.3§1.3/2.3/3.3 | FW 059.36-060.01

(c)        rphoto leaning / on a pillar

MS 47478-299, MT of insert: her picture photo leaning against her Piggott’s piano | JJA 52:256 | 1934-7 | II.2§5.2|-/7.3|- | FDV 156n64

(d)        rlower part of / face

My Life and Some Letters 11: [quotation from a letter by Hildegarde, an American cousin]  “[…] I am glad you could see a little resemblance to mother in my picture. I have always thought the lower part of my face was like her. I am 5 ft. 5 in. in height. Was mother as tall? …”

Not located in MS/FW

(e)        rIs climbs tree

My Life and Some Letters 19: There were happy days spent in the garden of Tulse Dale Lodge; my favourite amusement was to sit alone, high up in a tree, talking to myself and to the leaves—they were little people to me—and my friends.

MS 47478-299, MT of insert: the many’s the times I climbed the trees | JJA 52:256 | 1934-7 | II.2§5.2|-/7.3|- | [FDV 156n64]

Note: FDV reads ‘the many’s the times I climbed the tries’.

(e)                treefeller

My Life and Some Letters 19-20:  There was a day, too, when I sat on a gate watch-[19] ing Mr. Gladstone, who was profoundly interested in the workings of a newly invented steam saw for cutting down trees.


(a)        rW faint when / T— enters

My Life and Some Letters 23-24 Miss Bailey—“Aunt Kate,” as I afterwards called her—attracted me strangely. She was an old spinster lady nearly seventy years of age—I was not yet fifteen—the tallest and thinnest person I had ever see, with a very yellow wrinkled face and an austere manner. But in her youth she had been an intimate of Lord Byron and Tom Moore. She  ((24))  had seen ladies swoon with excitement when Lord Byron appeared at a party!

MS 47478-300, EM: Boaster! That women faint around when you enter! | JJA 52:257 | 1934-7 | II.2§5.2|-/7.3|- | FDV 156n64

(b)        rIs could lisp

My Life and Some Letters 30: There were the Urquhart girls, cousins of the Giffords, their father was a vicar at Bournemouth. The third daughter, Owney, a lovely gentle girl with a fascinating lisp, very many years afterwards, married my brother Max.

MS 47478-299, ILA: May the bridies feed the sweetnesses no more ^+moremirror+^ mornings from my ^+lisp–+^lips, Pipette | JJA 52:256 | 1934-7 | II.2§5.2|-/7.3|- | FDV 156n64

(c)        rin front (theat) >

MS 47483-152, ILA: So now ^+theated with Hag at the oilthar ^+oilthan+^+^ | JJA 57:242 | Apr-May 1926 | III§1A.6//2A.6/2B.4/2C.6 | FW 461.28-9  [PATRICK HORGAN]

(d)        rprompt corner

My Life and Some Letters 62-3: Ben Greet told me that the parts of the boy and girl were to be played by two members of the company, who knew their rôles, but that I must [62] play the nun—that I was to make a nun’s dress out of the some black cloth and white linen with safety-pins at once, and that he would say the words loudly from the prompt corner. All I had to do was to open and shut my mouth, hold up my hands in horror until the dance at the end, in which the nun joins. I did so, and it was a success. / Mr Pinero was in front. Years afterwards I asked him if he had noticed anything odd about the performance, and he said “No.”

MS 47482b-62v, LPA: in the rere on the run ^+from his prompt corner+^ | JJA 58:004 | probably Nov-Dec 1924 | III§3A.*1 | FW 475.29

(e)        base kit

Note: 135(e)-136(a) form a short military list of military terms.

My Life and Some Letters 396: [letter from Mrs Patrick Campbell’s son]:  “Darling, will you have the photograph films, which I think are in that box of mine, developed and printed? Al the stuff is what is called ‘Bse Kit,’ or stuff we cannot be burdened with out here, and I sent it on to you to take charge of.


(f)        delight (shells)

My Life and Some Letters 388: [letter from Mrs PC’s son]: The mortars are fine, and we fire a shell about the size of St. Paul’s, which make a noise like an earthquake. I direct their fire from the nearest point of the enemy. Our Tommies love them, and the cry is ever—‘Give ’em some more “Delight,” Sir!”

(g)        Granby Street

Note: No Granby Street in Dublin, though there was a Granby Row off Rutland (now Parnell) Square. However a number of cities, including Leeds, for example, have a Granby Street. In the present context it is probably the address of a military headquarters.

My Life and Some Letters 396: [letter from Mrs PC’s son]]: The things you sent me are fine, and I don’t get wet feet now. / My dug-out is in a trench called ‘Granby Street.’

 (h)       rthe visional / area

My Life and Some Letters 388: [from an official report about Mrs PC’s son]: Using the personnel of the Mortar Battery, and with the help of the N.C.O.’s from the Divisional Signal Company (R.E.’s), he laid out 13 mine fields in the di-[383]visional area, protecting the withdrawal of troops from the line.

MS 47471b-1v: overflow meeting ^+fully filling the visional area+^ | !231200 | I.2§2.*0 | FW 042.21-2

(i)         in the field

My Life and Some Letters 394: [from a letter of Mrs PC’s son]: Your sweet letter has just arrived. You don’t know how it cheers one up to get letters from those one loves. / I am sending you my ‘Cross’ registered. I do hpe it doesn’t get lost. There is no opportunity of wearing it out here in the field, and I wear the bit of ribbon on my left breast.



(a)        rconvert torpedos / into electrical / contact land / mines by tins / of ammonia, lashed / to sides of aerial / torpedoes trip / wiring to contact [pieces] into electric batteries

My Life and Some Letters 383: [from an offical report about Mrs PC’s son]: Prior to the “evacuation,” acting under orders of the Divisional General, he invented a means of converting the remainder of the large “Dumezil” torpedoes, into electrical contact land mines, by means of tins of ammonal, lashed to the sides of aerial torpedoes, and trip wires to contact pieces into electric batteries.

MS 47471b-22v, LPA: a landmine ^+exploded from a bombing post of 1400 feet in his aerial torpedo contacted with the expectant minefield by tins of ammonia lashed to her sides and ^+fused to+^ trip wires playing ^+down+^ into the ground battery fuseboxes+^ | JJA 46:012 | I.4§1A.*1c. Nov 1923 | FW 077.07-11

(b)        rminefield

My Life and Some Letters 384: [from an offical report about Mrs PC’s son]: The mine fields started from the between the firing line and support line and covering the whole front, continued down to the Eski line (or final reserve line).

MS 47471b-22v, LPA: a landmine ^+exploded from a bombing post of 1400 feet in his aerial torpedo contacted with the expectant minefield by tins of ammonia lashed to her sides and ^+fused to+^ trip wires playing ^+down+^ into the ground battery fuseboxes+^ | JJA 46:012 | I.4§1A.*1 | Nov 1923 | FW 077.08

(c)        rbombing post >

MS 47471b-22v, LPA: a landmine ^+exploded from a bombing post of 1400 feet in his aerial torpedo contacted with the expectant minefield by tins of ammonia lashed to her sides and ^+fused to+^ trip wires playing ^+down+^ into the ground battery fuseboxes+^ | JJA 46:012 | I.4§1A.*1 | Nov 1923 | FW 077.05

(b)                strong point >>


(a)        all units of / brigade, keeping / touch for Brigadier

My Life and Some Letters 384-5: [from an offical report about Mrs PC’s son]: He was practically in trenches all the time. He put up a “box barrage” with the Stokes Battery in two successful raids in enemy trenches. Took part in the operation north of Ancre on November 13th, 14th, 15th. / Ordered by Brigadier down from bombing post in German strong point to conduct two tanks up; assaulted strong point with tanks at 6:10 a. m. on November [384] 14th, and in one hour took position, and with officers and crews of tanks rounded up nearly 400 prisoners, including seven officers, after which, until relieved on November 15th at 4 P.M., acted as General Brigade liaison officer, keeping touch for Brigadier with all units of brigade.