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friery
Posts: 209
Registered: ‎10-19-2006
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James Joyce and Shakespeare

James Joyce devoured Shakespeare. He gave a very well-received lecture series on Hamlet (a play that formed one of the major themes in Joyce's Ulysses). But other plays were mentioned in Ulysses and Finnegans Wake.

Here's a quote regarding Macbeth from Ulysses--Stephen Dedalus is speaking:

"All events brought grist to his mill. Shylock chimes with the jewbaiting that followed the hanging and quartering of the queen's leech Lopez, his jew's heart being plucked forth while the sheeny was yet alive: Hamlet and Macbeth with the coming to the throne of a Scotch philosophaster with a turn for witchroasting. The lost armada is his jeer in Love's Labour Lost. His pageants, the histories, sail fullbellied on a tide of Mafeking enthusiasm. Warwickshire jesuits are tried and we have a porter's theory of equivocation. The Sea Venture comes home from Bermudas and the play Renan admired is written with Patsy Caliban, our American cousin. The sugared sonnets follow Sidney's. As for fay Elizabeth, otherwise carrotty Bess, the gross virgin who inspired the Merry Wives of Windsor, let some meinherr from Almany grope his life long for deephid meanings in the depths of the buckbasket." (Ulysses 9:748.)

The phrase "Macbeth with the coming to the throne of a Scotch philosophaster with a turn for witchroasting" is apparently a reference to James I (formerly James VI of Scotland). James was fascinated with witchcraft--he actually wrote a textbook on the subject.

Wait, there's more--Banquo was an actual ancestor of James I. Does this partly explain Shakespeare's treatment of the character of Banquo?
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Choisya
Posts: 10,782
Registered: ‎10-26-2006
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Re: James Joyce and Shakespeare

Rather a nasty passage from Ulysses Stratford.:smileysad:

It is now generally accepted that James I was not descended from Banquo but from Siward. David I, 1124-1153, who preceded James, married Matilda, Siward's daughter. Banquo is not in the historical line of descent which is:

Duncan I
(d. 1040)
|
| [Macbeth (ca 1005-1057):
| rules 1040-1057
| (d. 1057, slain by Malcolm)]
|
Malcolm III (Canmore)
(d. 1093) Son of Duncan I
rules 1057-1093.
|
| Donald Ban, Malcolm's
| brother, uncle to Duncan II,
| usurps crown, 1093.
|
Duncan II
(d. 1094) Eldest son of Malcolm
Canmore, by his first wife.
|
| Donald Ban restored 1095.
|
Edgar, son of Malcolm by his second
wife, installed on Scots throne by
William Rufus, 1097.
|
|
Alexander I, son of Malcolm by his
second wife.
|
|
David I [= Matilda (Siward's daughter)]
son of Malcolm Canmore (ruled 1124-1153).
|
[... some 400 years]
|
James Stuart (1567, VI of Scotland)
(and 1603, I of England)

[




friery wrote:
James Joyce devoured Shakespeare. He gave a very well-received lecture series on Hamlet (a play that formed one of the major themes in Joyce's Ulysses). But other plays were mentioned in Ulysses and Finnegans Wake.

Here's a quote regarding Macbeth from Ulysses--Stephen Dedalus is speaking:

"All events brought grist to his mill. Shylock chimes with the jewbaiting that followed the hanging and quartering of the queen's leech Lopez, his jew's heart being plucked forth while the sheeny was yet alive: Hamlet and Macbeth with the coming to the throne of a Scotch philosophaster with a turn for witchroasting. The lost armada is his jeer in Love's Labour Lost. His pageants, the histories, sail fullbellied on a tide of Mafeking enthusiasm. Warwickshire jesuits are tried and we have a porter's theory of equivocation. The Sea Venture comes home from Bermudas and the play Renan admired is written with Patsy Caliban, our American cousin. The sugared sonnets follow Sidney's. As for fay Elizabeth, otherwise carrotty Bess, the gross virgin who inspired the Merry Wives of Windsor, let some meinherr from Almany grope his life long for deephid meanings in the depths of the buckbasket." (Ulysses 9:748.)

The phrase "Macbeth with the coming to the throne of a Scotch philosophaster with a turn for witchroasting" is apparently a reference to James I (formerly James VI of Scotland). James was fascinated with witchcraft--he actually wrote a textbook on the subject.

Wait, there's more--Banquo was an actual ancestor of James I. Does this partly explain Shakespeare's treatment of the character of Banquo?


Correspondent
friery
Posts: 209
Registered: ‎10-19-2006
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Re: James Joyce and Shakespeare


Choisya wrote:
Rather a nasty passage from Ulysses.:smileysad:


friery wrote:
James Joyce devoured Shakespeare. He gave a very well-received lecture series on Hamlet (a play that formed one of the major themes in Joyce's Ulysses). But other plays were mentioned in Ulysses and Finnegans Wake.

Here's a quote regarding Macbeth from Ulysses--Stephen Dedalus is speaking:

"All events brought grist to his mill. Shylock chimes with the jewbaiting that followed the hanging and quartering of the queen's leech Lopez, his jew's heart being plucked forth while the sheeny was yet alive: Hamlet and Macbeth with the coming to the throne of a Scotch philosophaster with a turn for witchroasting. The lost armada is his jeer in Love's Labour Lost. His pageants, the histories, sail fullbellied on a tide of Mafeking enthusiasm. Warwickshire jesuits are tried and we have a porter's theory of equivocation. The Sea Venture comes home from Bermudas and the play Renan admired is written with Patsy Caliban, our American cousin. The sugared sonnets follow Sidney's. As for fay Elizabeth, otherwise carrotty Bess, the gross virgin who inspired the Merry Wives of Windsor, let some meinherr from Almany grope his life long for deephid meanings in the depths of the buckbasket." (Ulysses 9:748.)




It is rather a nasty passage. I thought for a while to edit it, but decided to leave it whole. It emphasizes the anti-Semitism in Joyce's time in Ireland (and in England during Shakespeare's time--thus the reference to the Queen's doctor Roderigo Lopez, who was a Spanish Jew).

The irony, of course, was that Leo Bloom, Joyce's protagonist in Ulysses, was a Jew.

No excuses for Joyce's reference to Queen Elizabeth as "carotty Bess," she of the red hair.
Frequent Contributor
stratford
Posts: 85
Registered: ‎01-27-2007
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Re: James Joyce and Shakespeare

The following is from one of my earlier "Historical Macbeth" posts:

In reality Macbeth was no assassin; but his reputation had to be assassinated. Step by step, the stains were spread. Already by the fourteenth century the Scots chronicler John of Fordon, who invented the figure of Banquo, was calling Macbeth a usurper. And early in the fifteenth century, Andrew of Wyntoun was putting the tag of murder onto Duncan’s death. Yet it was the sixteenth-century scholar Hector Boece who did the decisive damage.



friery wrote:


Wait, there's more--Banquo was an actual ancestor of James I. Does this partly explain Shakespeare's treatment of the character of Banquo?


Inspired Contributor
Choisya
Posts: 10,782
Registered: ‎10-26-2006
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Re: James Joyce and Shakespeare

This blackening of names may have been due to clan feuds which were (are!) very prevalent in Scottish history.

http://www.historic-uk.com/HistoryUK/Scotland-History/HighlandClans.htm




stratford wrote:
The following is from one of my earlier "Historical Macbeth" posts:

In reality Macbeth was no assassin; but his reputation had to be assassinated. Step by step, the stains were spread. Already by the fourteenth century the Scots chronicler John of Fordon, who invented the figure of Banquo, was calling Macbeth a usurper. And early in the fifteenth century, Andrew of Wyntoun was putting the tag of murder onto Duncan’s death. Yet it was the sixteenth-century scholar Hector Boece who did the decisive damage.



friery wrote:


Wait, there's more--Banquo was an actual ancestor of James I. Does this partly explain Shakespeare's treatment of the character of Banquo?





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