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The North House, DIT Grangegorman, formerly the Male House in the Richmond District Lunatic Asylum

dottyville-map

Extract from Ordnance Survey Map of Grangegorman. Survey dated 1888-1913

36_Dottyville

—That fellow I was with in the Ship last night, said Buck Mulligan, says you have g.p.i, He’s up in Dottyville with Conolly Norman. General paralysis of the insane!

James Joyce. Ulysses (Page 6)

Dottyville refers to the Richmond District Lunatic Asylum of which Conolly Norman, an alienist or psychiatrist, was the resident medical superintendent. The asylum subsequently became St. Brendan’s Hospital and the area is commonly known as Granagegorman. Conolly Norman died on 23 February 1908 at his home at St Dymphna’s, which is on the North Circular Road, in front of the new Phoenix Care Centre at the north west corner of the new Grangegorman Campus. There is a biography of Conolly Norman on the Royal Irish Academy website hereDespite the proximity of Grangegorman to Glasnevin Cemetery, Conolly Norman is buried in Mount Jerome on the south side of the River Liffey. The cemetery, which opened in 1836 was originally exclusively used for protestant burials.

Joyce understood Dublin keenly and at one stage lived a small distance from Grangegorman in St. Peter’s Terrace, Cabra. He describes Grangegorman in Finnegans Wake as the platauplain of Grangegorman. This phrase hints at the magnificent views across Dublin, but also the biting wind that sweeps across Grangegorman, where the new DIT campus opened in 2014. There is an interesting article about Grangegorman on the Dublin City Council website here

the rigadoons have held ragtimed revels on the platauplain of Grangegorman

James Joyce. Finnegans Wake (Page 236)

The meanings of words and phrases that Joyce compounded for Finnegans Wake are brilliantly explained on the website www.finwake.com and the Grangegorman reference is explained here if you scroll down to page 236. Dottyville is another obvious compound word. Glynn Anderson writes in his book Birds of Ireland, Facts, Folklore & History that the word Dotty is derived from the dotterel bird, known in Irish as Amadán móinteach, or “bog idiot”, because it was so docile it was easily captured by humans.

Joyce’s daughter Lucia suffered from mental health issues. She went on an ill fated trip to Ireland, arriving on St.Patrick’s Day 1935, where she ran amok and amongst other erratic behaviour, lit a fire in the middle of her room in the house in Meath Road, Bray. There were other bizarre incidents described in detail in Carol Loeb Shloss’s biography  Lucia Joyce, To Dance in the Wake. Joyce eventually found out about the events in Ireland. Brenda Maddox writes,

As all of this went on, Joyce protested that no one wrote to Nora and him. That was not true. Eileen had wired him of her alarm but Joyce brushed her off: ‘The scenes that scared you and Miss Weaver are nothing to speak of. Her mother stood four years of much worse than that.’ Nonetheless he asked Constantine Curran, with his wife and daughter , to drive down to Bray to see what was going on. It did not take them long to see that Lucia was living in disorder and was incapable of looking after herself. Mrs. Curran and Elizabeth sorted out Lucia’s beautiful clothes, which were in a terrible heap. Even as Lucia, who was a heavy smoker, watched them, hew tweed jacket caught fire from a box of matches in her pocket.
    Alarmed at what they found, Curran wrote at length to Nora rather than to Joyce. He recommended taking Lucia to see an American-trained psychoanalytic doctor in Dublin. Joyce, annoyed because Curran had not reported directly to him and distrustful of psychoanalysts, cabled immediately that no such appointment was to take place. Joyce was resolved to continue with his strategy of allowing Lucia total freedom, seeing that all medical attempts at restraint had filed, The one thing Lucia hated, he knew, was being under surveillance.

Brenda Maddox. Nora (Pages 411, 412)

Lucia ended her trip with a three week stay in Farnham House, an asylum in Finglas, just to the north of Grangegorman. She left Ireland in July of the same year. Later she was resident in St.Andrews Hospital, formerly the Northampton General Lunatic Asylum, in Northamptonshire, England, where she lived from 1951 until her death in 1982. Whilst there she had visits from Samuel Beckett and Miss Weaver, Joyce’s patron. It is interesting to speculate that if Joyce had returned to Ireland, Lucia may herself have ended up in Grangegorman.

Bibliography

Joyce, J. (1998) Ulysses. Edited by Hans Walter Gabler, Wolfhard Steppe, and Claus Melchior. Afterward by Michael Gordon edn. New York, United States: Vintage Books.

Joyce, J. (2000) Finnegans Wake. Introduction by Seamus Deane edn. London, United Kingdom: Penguin Books.

Maddox, B. (1988) Nora: A Biography of Nora Joyce. London, United Kingdom: Hamish Hamilton.

Shloss, C.L. (2005) Lucia Joyce: To Dance in the Wake. London, United Kingdom: Bloomsbury.

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34_TheyFoundTheGrave

—They tell the story, he said, that two drunks came out here one foggy evening to look for the grave of a friend of theirs. They asked for Mulcahy from the Coombe and were told where he was buried. After traipsing about in the fog they found the grave sure enough. One of the drunks spelt out the name: Terence Mulcahy. The other drunk was blinking up at a statue of Our Saviour the widow had got put up.
The caretaker blinked up at one of the sepulchres they passed. He resumed:
—And, after blinking up at the sacred figure, Not a bloody bit like the man, says he. That’s not Mulcahy, says he, whoever done it.

James Joyce. Ulysses (Page 88)

James Joyce was not the first born of John Stanislaus Joyce and May Murray. They had a son born on 23rd November 1880, some seven months after their wedding. The baby lived for eight days. Wyse Jackson and Costello say that the birth took place at home in Ontario Terrace whereas Ken Monaghan, who’s mother May was one of James Joyce’s sisters, in his book Joyce’s Dublin Family, says the boy was born in 47 Northumberland Avenue in Kingstown, now Dun Laoghaire. Regardless of the uncertainty of the birth, the baby was to be the first Joyce to be buried in the family plot in Glasnevin.

For the funeral, John bought a plot in Prospect Cemetery, Glasnevin, where he knew the Superintendent, David Malins. This was the only estate he would manage to hold on to until his own death. Glasnevin was on the northern outskirts of the city; the large graveyard there had the melancholy distinction of being ‘the Irish Valhalla’, as the burial place of, among other national heroes, Daniel O’Connell, who had helped to create it as an almost exclusively Catholic Cemetery. There were very few mourners at the freezing graveside; even the baby’s mother was not there – as it was not then customary for women to attend funerals.

John Wyse Jackson and Peter Costello. John Stanislaus Joyce (Page 100)

    Mr Bloom stood far back, his hat in his hand, counting the bared heads. Twelve. I’m thirteen. No. The chap in the macintosh is thirteen. Death’s number. Where the deuce did he pop out of? He wasn’t in the chapel, that I’ll swear. Silly superstition that about thirteen.

James Joyce. Ulysses (Page 90)

I have speculated elsewhere in this blog (Who was M’Intosh? December 23rd, 2014), about the man in the macintosh being a version of Stanislaus Joyce, but it was Stanislaus who noted that the impressions for the funeral scene in Ulysses must have been gathered from the two family funerals Joyce attended in the cemetery.

As Jim disliked funerals and avoided going to them , his impressions for the ‘Hades’ episode of Ulysses must have been gathered either at my mother’s funeral or at my younger brother Georgie’s. He was never in the cemetery again.

Stanislaus Joyce. My Brother’s Keeper (Page 235)

A headstone seems not to have been erected until after John Stanislaus Joyce’s death on the 29th December 1931, over fifty years since the plot was opened.

In accordance with the instructions from his father’s ghost (so the son suggested), the gravestone for Glasnevin was soon commissioned (via Alfie Bergan) from Harrison’s, who had done the arms of Dublin for the North City Markets in 1892. Bergan had heard directly from John Stanislaus that the inscription was to mention only John himself and his wife May. There would be nothing about the other Joyces in the same plot, not even poor Georgie or Baby.

John Wyse Jackson and Peter Costello. John Stanislaus Joyce (Page 425)

James Joyce could not have attended the first burial in the Joyce family plot. He could have attended the last, but chose not to return home for it, despite being named as his father’s sole heir. One of the curious aspects of the headstone is that there is no religious iconography. The white stone is surrounded by dark headstones, complete with obvious crucifix adornments. John Stanislaus left explicit instructions that only his name, and that of his wife were to appear on the headstone. The white colour, in stark contrast to those surrounding it, may have been chosen to indicate that children were also interred, white being the traditional colour of children’s coffins.

Bibliography

Costello, P. and Jackson, J.W. (1998) John Stanislaus Joyce: The Voluminous Life and Genius of James Joyce’s Father. London, United Kingdom: Fourth Estate.

Joyce, J. (1998) Ulysses. Edited by Hans Walter Gabler, Wolfhard Steppe, and Claus Melchior. Afterward by Michael Gordon edn. New York, United States: Vintage Books.

Joyce, S. (2003) My Brother’s Keeper: James Joyce’s Early Years. Edited by Richard Ellmann. Cambridge, Massachusetts, United States: Da Capo Press.
Monaghan, K. (2005) Joyce’s Dublin Family. Dublin: The James Joyce Centre.
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Glasnevin Cemetery: 15 June 2015

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Glasnevin Cemetery: 15 June 2015

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14_HeisDead

The Death of Parnell

6th October, 1891

He cleared his throat once or twice and then began to recite:

He is dead. Our Uncrowned King is dead.
O, Erin, mourn with grief and woe
For he lies dead whom the fell gang
Of modern hypocrites laid low.

He lies slain by the coward hounds
He raised to glory from the mire:
And Erin’s hopes and Erin’s dreams
Perish upon her monarch’s pyre.

In palace, cabin or in cot
The Irish heart where’er it be
Is bowed with woe—for he is gone
Who would have wrought her destiny.

He would have had his Erin famed,
The green flag gloriously unfurled,
Her statesmen, bards and warriors raised
Before the nations of the world.

He dreamed (alas, ‘twas but a dream!)
Of Liberty: but as he strove
To clutch that idol, treachery
Sundered him from the thing he loved.

Shame on the coward, caitiff hands
That smote their Lord or with a kiss
Betrayed him to the rabble-rout
Of fawning priests—no friends of his!

May everlasting shame consume
The memory of those who tried
To befoul and smear th’exalted name
Of one who spurned them in his pride!

He fell as fall the mighty ones,
Nobly undaunted to the last,
And death has now united him
With Erin’s heroes of the past.

No sound of strife disturb his sleep!
Calmly he rests: no human pain
Or high ambition spurs him now
The peaks of glory to attain.

They had their way: they laid him low.
But Erin, list, his spirit may
Rise, like the Phoenix from the flames,
When breaks the dawning of the day,

The day that brings us Freedom’s reign.
And on that day may Erin well
Pledge in the cup she lifts to Joy
One grief—the memory of Parnell.

    Mr. Hynes sat down again on the table. When he had finished his recitation there was a silence and then a burst of clapping: even Mr. Lyons clapped. The applause continued for a little time. When it had ceased all the auditors drank from their bottles in silence.

James Joyce. Ivy Day in the Committee Room (pages 114-116)

October 6th is Ivy Day, the commemoration of the death of Charles Stewart Parnell who died in 1891 and the story centres around Parnell and his downfall, and finishes with this poem..

I ran to Glasnevin Cemetery to pass Parnell’s grave but also to look at the grave of James Joyce’s parents, John Stanislaus Joyce (of Cork) 1849 -1939 and Mary Jane (of Dublin) 1859 – 1903

The two graves are on opposite sides of a path from each other, both a short distance from the main entrance. You can see Parnell’s grave on the left of this Google Street View Image and the Joyce Family plot on the right

There is a lot of information on the Glasnevin Trust Website here. A brief article on the family, complete with Patrick Tuohy’s portrait of John Stanislaus Joyce is hereand a most interesting .pdf from the Glasnevin trust can be viewed and downloaded here

Several of Joyce’s siblings are buried in the plot and I will expand on this in a further post.

Bibliography

Joyce, J. (2006) Dubliners, Authoritative Text, Contexts, Criticism. Edited by Margot Norris, Hans Walter Gabler, and Walter Hettche. New York, United States: Norton, W. W. & Company.

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13_ThePriestsPawns

—What I mean, said Mr Lyons, is we have our ideals. Why, now, would we welcome a man like that? Do you think now after what he did Parnell was a fit man to lead us? And why, then, would we do it for Edward the Seventh?
—This is Parnell’s anniversary, said Mr O’Connor, and don’t let us stir up any bad blood. We all respect him now that he’s dead and gone—even the Conservatives, he added, turning to Mr Crofton.

James Joyce, Ivy Day in the Committee Room, Dubliners (Pages 113)

In Dubliners the story Ivy Day in The Committee Room is about Charles Stewart Parnell and his position in Ireland. Arguments take place when the forthcoming visit of Edward VII is mentioned and he is compared to Parnell.

Consider the passage from Dubliners and compare it with this passage from A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man

—Let him remember too, cried Mr Casey to her from across the table, the language with which the priests and the priests’ pawns broke Parnell’s heart and hounded him into his grave. Let him remember that too when he grows up.
—Sons of bitches! cried Mr Dedalus. When he was down they turned on him to betray him and rend him like rats in a sewer. Lowlived dogs! And they look it! By Christ, they look it!
—They behaved rightly, cried Dante. They obeyed their bishops and their priests. Honour to them!

James Joyce, A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man (Page 29)

Parnell seems to divide opinion, even at times in the same person. In A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man Dante has two separate brushes.

    Dante had two brushes in her press. The brush with the maroon velvet back was for Michael Davitt and the brush with the green velvet back was for Parnell.

James Joyce, A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man (Page 5)

Parnell is mentioned in Ulysses and the place of his grave, Glasnevin Cemetery features strongly, but his brother John Howard appears in several real and imagined episodes:

Bloom sees him,

   The sun freed itself slowly and lit glints of light among the silverware opposite in Walter Sexton’s window by which John Howard Parnell passed, unseeing.
    There he is: the brother. Image of him. Haunting face. Now that’s a coincidence. Course hundreds of times you think of a person and don’t meet him. Like a man walking in his sleep. No-one knows him. Must be a corporation meeting today. They say he never put on the city marshal’s uniform since he got the job.”

James Joyce, Ulysses (Page 135)

As do Buck Mulligan and Haines,

    As they trod across the thick carpet Buck Mulligan whispered behind his Panama to Haines:
— Parnell’s brother. There in the corner.
    They chose a small table near the window, opposite a longfaced man whose beard and gaze hung intently down on a chessboard.
— Is that he? Haines asked, twisting round in his seat.
— Yes, Mulligan said. That’s John Howard, his brother, our city marshal.

James Joyce, Ulysses (Page 204)

And later he appears in Nighttown

JOHN HOWARD PARNELL
(raises the royal standard) Illustrious Bloom! Successor to my famous brother!
BLOOM
(embraces John Howard Parnell) We thank you from our heart, John, for this right royal welcome to green Erin, the promised land of our common ancestors.

James Joyce, Ulysses (Page 394)

Parnell is clearly an important figure for Joyce. I came across a reference to a Picture Postcard of Parnell’s grave that was given to Sylvia Beach by James Joyce.

The reference is on Page 217 of the following: Manuscripts & Letters at the University of Buffalo, A Catalogue. Compiled and with an Introduction by Peter Spielberg. Published by the University of Buffalo in 1962 and available online here: http://library.buffalo.edu/pl/collections/jamesjoyce/pdf/spielberg238.pdf

I wondered what the postcard looked like so I searched online. There is one on sale on Ebay which you can see here.

The card is from a photograph from the Lawrence Collection which can be viewed online here and has many interesting historical photographs that you can purchase.

The same photograph with much more publishing details can be viewed online at The National Library of Ireland website here: http://catalogue.nli.ie/Record/vtls000041272

The grave itself is a short walk from Saint Peter’s Terrace which Joyce moved into in 1902, where his mother passed away in 1903 and the last address that he lived in with his father John Joyce. The run from Grangegorman passes Saint Peter’s Terrace and goes to the cemetery and back via Connaught Street, Ulster Street, Munster Street and Leinster Street North…all streets that James Joyce would have been familiar with in his walks around the North Inner City.

Bibliography

Joyce, J. (1998) Ulysses. Edited by Hans Walter Gabler, Wolfhard Steppe, and Claus Melchior. Afterward by Michael Gordon edn. New York, United States: Vintage Books.

Joyce, J. (2006) Dubliners, Authoritative Text, Contexts, Criticism. Edited by Margot Norris, Hans Walter Gabler, and Walter Hettche. New York, United States: Norton, W. W. & Company.

Joyce, J. (2007) A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man, Authoritative Text, Backgrounds and Contexts Criticism. Edited by John Paul Riquelme, Hans Walter Gabler, and Walter Hettche. New York, United States: Norton, W. W. & Company.

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11_HeDrivesHisBeasts

The Poem Tilly written in Dublin in 1904 and the first of the Poems Pennyeach collection, has the opening verse

He travels after a winter sun,
Urging the cattle along a cold red road,
Calling to them, a voice they know,
He drives his beasts above Cabra.

The voice tells them home is warm.
They moo and make brute music with their hoofs.
He drives them with a flowering branch before him,
Smoke pluming their foreheads.

Boor, bond of the herd,
Tonight stretch full by the fire!
I bleed by the black stream
For my torn bough!

Dublin, 1904

James Joyce. Poems and Shorter Writings (Page 51)

This run was all about finding ways of ending the half marathon on the platauplain of Grangegorman, but part of it took me through Cabra and I was reminded of this poem. Joyce spent time in the house at 8 St. Peter’s Terrace which is just off the Cabra Road and would be very familiar with walks in and around the area.

If you look at the Ordnance Survey Map online here, you can see how rural the lands above the Cabra Road and again by using the slier overlay you can compare them with the built up nature of today.

Bibliography

Joyce, J. (2001) Poems and Shorter Writings. Edited by Richard Ellmann, A. Walton Litz, and John Whittier Ferguson. London, United Kingdom: Faber & Faber.

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