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Here Comes Everybody > Buckley & the Russian General

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message 1: by Nathan "N.R." (new)

Nathan "N.R." Gaddis (NathanNRGaddis) | 412 comments From McHugh (page335, 258R)::

Ellmann, JJ 398 [the biography]: "Buckley, [Joyce] explained, was an Irish soldier in the Crimean War who drew a bead on a Russian general, but when he observed his splendid epaulettes & decorations, he could not bring himself to shoot. After a moment, alive to his duty, he raised his rifle again, but just then the general let down his pants to defecate. The sight of his enemy in so helpless & human a plight was too much for Buckley, who again lowered his gun. But when the general prepared to finish the operation with a piece of grassy turf, Buckley lost all respect for him & fired."


message 2: by Geoff (new)

Geoff | 166 comments Fantastic.


message 3: by Nathan "N.R." (new)

Nathan "N.R." Gaddis (NathanNRGaddis) | 412 comments The story of Buckley and the Russian General gets told in the Butt & Taff radio drama which plays in the tavern scene :: something like pages 338 (R260) and following.

Lots more wakean permutations on the name of the two belligerents, zB, "How Burghley shuck the rackushant Germanon" (338) or "bulchrichudes and the roshashanaral" (340). We even get the Bloom defecation scene : "he was only haftara having afterhis brokeforths" (343) which, you'll notice, is combined with a fart joke.


message 4: by Mark (new)

Mark André Since Joyce seemed to like common words that had multiple meanings I'm curious about the possible extended meanings of the word general.

In Ulysses we find in Lestrygonians: "Cook and general, exc. cuisine, housemaid kept."
And then in Ithaca: "...cook, general and betweenmaid..."

Then in the Wake, pg. 46: "The general lost her maidenloo!"
And on pg. 50: "...encountered by the General on that redletter..."
And on pg. 141: "...sweeds, plain general kept..."

I think I read somewhere, maybe Ellmann, that when Nora worked at Finn's Hotel that her title was general maid, or something like that.

So, I'm not denying the importance of the Russian General story, I'm just suggesting that maybe in Joyce's household slang that maybe Nora was referred to as the General also.

Along these same lines, the re-occuring story about the "letter" may have been something Nora intercepted and Jim got into a lot of trouble for: referencing the quote above from pg. 50.

Also there is the slight curiosity of Buckley's name being some what similar to how Bloom is referred to at the end of Oxen: "Buckled he is."

If this is all just old hat, or the misguided ramblings of an old man I apologize ahead of time.


message 5: by Aloha (new)

Aloha | 51 comments Considering that Joyce picked Bloomsday as the day he first took a walk with Nora, you might be close to the mark, Mark.


message 6: by Mark (new)

Mark André Aloha wrote: "Considering that Joyce picked Bloomsday as the day he first took a walk with Nora, you might be close to the mark, Mark."

Thanks, Aloha! Just thinking out loud.


message 7: by Aloha (new)

Aloha | 51 comments I like such thinking out loud! You reminded me I need to go back to Ulysses and FW.


message 8: by Mark (last edited Jan 30, 2018 07:54PM) (new)

Mark André Aloha wrote: "I like such thinking out loud! You reminded me I need to go back to Ulysses and FW."
Cool! - )


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