free booknotes online

Help / FAQ




<- Previous Page | First Page | Next Page ->
MonkeyNotes-Ulysses by James Joyce
Table of Contents | Message Board | Printable Version

Chapter 8

Lestrygonians Summary

It is 1 p.m. Bloom continues his wanderings through the streets of Dublin. He has memories of his past life. He is obsessed by memories of his wife’s lovers. It is lunchtime. But the sight of a crowd of men eating is too disgusting for his heightened sensibilities. He recoils from the restaurant. First he passes by a sweet shop. Thoughts of food and the approaching lunch hour come to him. He is handed a religious pamphlet, with the opening phrase "Blood of the Lamb." He thinks about evangelism. He recollects a luminous cross that had recently been marketed. He sees Stephen’s sister, Dilly, in the street. He is filled with sympathy and compassion for the motherless and poor Dedalus family. As he crosses the O’Connell Bridge he throws the religion tract into the water. He watches the seagulls swoop around. They pay no attention to the falling paper. He is filled with compassion for them. Bloom buys two buns and flings them to the birds.

A succession of advertisements catches his eye. He admires a notice attached to a barge in the river. But he is scornful of a group of sandwich men advertising Wisdom Hely’s. He recollects that he used to work for Hely, the stationer. He had good ideas for advertising tricks, which had been rejected. He feels glad that he longer works there. He remembers the difficult task of collecting payments from the nunneries. He had been employed by Hely’s immediately after his marriage. Rudy died ten years ago. His mind is filled with recollections of Molly as a young wife. Some of her lovers come into his memory too, such as Bartell d’Arcy, the distinguished tenor.


Then Bloom meets in the street one of his old lady friends, Mrs. Denis Breen. Breen has fallen on evil days. He is the prey of various lunatic fancies. Mrs. Breen tells how he has been troubled by a mysterious postcard, apparently sent by some malicious trickster. Bloom, with his ever ready sympathy for the wretched, looks sorrowfully at her "shabby genteel" appearance. He discusses a mutual acquaintance, Mrs. Purefoy. Mrs. Purefoy, he learns, is in the Maternity Hospital. A well-known Dublin eccentric, Cashel Boyle Farrell, passes by in an antic fashion. A moment later they sight Breen shuffling along. Bloom resumes his walk, past the offices of The Irish Times. He remembers how he came into contact with his pen-friend Martha through an advertisement in its columns. He thinks of the newspaper’s society columns. He remembers an amorous episode with such a lady. Then his thoughts turn back to childbirth, Molly and his recollections as a young husband.

Two groups of policemen pass by. One group comes flushed from lunch. The other is heading in to eat. Bloom thinks of the brutality of some policemen at breaking up demonstrations and revolutionary activities in general. The sun passes behind a cloud. The sudden gloom of the day and thoughts of anarchism, rouse a moment of despair, "No one is anything." But the sun comes out again. The sight of Parnell’s brother walking by and the display of telescopes and binoculars in a store window divert his thoughts and cheer him up. He dreams of mixing with astronomers and finding the answer to the question that keeps running through his mind. He moves past the rich displays of luxury goods in the windows of Grafton Street shops. He revives briefly his earlier vision of Dublin as a splendid exotic oriental market-place.

Bloom goes into Burton’s restaurant. But he is overwhelmed with nausea at the sight of the gobbling diners. Instead, he goes to Davy Byrne’s. He enjoys a light, vegetarian snack. Nosey Flynn is in the bar, and he talks with Bloom about Molly and her forthcoming tour. The name of Blazes Boylan crops up. It distresses him for a moment. After his lunch, Bloom begins to feel more relaxed. He takes in the scene at the bar and meditates on eating and on erotic orgies with some equanimity. He remembers moments in his courtship. He determines to visit the museum, to enjoy the ideal and tranquil beauty of the statuary. After Bloom leaves the bar, the others speak of him briefly. He is, they agree, "not too bad." "Give the devil his due. O, Bloom has his good points."

Bloom continues his walk. He responds cheerfully to the various scenes around him. He helps a young blind man to cross the road. As he moves along, he is stunned by the sight ahead of him of "Straw hat in sunlight. Tan shoes. Turned-up trousers." It is presumably Blazes Boylan. Bloom darts aside into the museum. Boylan does not see him. Bloom ritualistically checks his pockets, finds his soap and feels safe.

Table of Contents | Message Board | Printable Version


<- Previous Page | First Page | Next Page ->
MonkeyNotes-Ulysses by James Joyce
Google
Web
PinkMonkey

Google
  Web PinkMonkey.com   

All Contents Copyright © PinkMonkey.com
All rights reserved. Further Distribution Is Strictly Prohibited.


About Us
 | Advertising | Contact Us | Privacy Policy | Home Page
This page was last updated: 5/9/2017 8:53:43 AM