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Partial Later Draft of the “Sirens” (11) Episode (1919)1

Material Description and Collation

The manuscript is a copybook in Joyce’s hand in black ink, with pencil additions and/or revisions on all the inscribed pages, except pp. [3r], [5r] and [11r]; the text on pp. [6v], [7v], [10v] and [12v] is all in pencil. It consists of 12 leaves (24 pages) of unlined paper, of which 19 pages are inscribed and 5 are blank: pp. [1v], [2v], [3v], [4v] and [9v].

As manufactured, the copybook was held together with 3 metal staples in the center vertical fold; they were removed for conservation purposes and the manuscript was disbound. It has a heavier stock faded blue paper cover and (like MS V.A.8) it has a white oval paper label with scalloped edges pasted on the front cover recto on which “James Joyce.” was written in ink but not in Joyce’s hand. The cover and each sheet were cleaned, de-acidified and encapsulated in February 1988.


Each leaf measures 21.9 x 17.6 cm.


Joyce foliated each recto page “21)”–”32)” in the left margin in pencil as well as foliating the end of the episode on p. [11v] “33)” in the left margin, also in pencil. This pagination is continued directly from NLI MS 36,639/09, which is foliated “1)”–”20)”, though unlike here from recto to verso consecutively throughout on that manuscript.


This manuscript contains the second part and conclusion of a later draft of the “Sirens” episode, which it continues in mid sentence from NLI MS 36,63/09. The earlier extant draft of the episode (NLI MS 36,639/07/A–B) contains most of the first half of the episode (11.0098–0540) at that stage of its development (on pp. [5v]–[10r]). That manuscript also contains a disparate collection of textual fragments for the latter half of “Sirens” (on pp. [10r]–[14r] and on a loose sheet), most of which Joyce incorporated into this later draft version.

The text on each page of this manuscript is as follows:

MS V.A.5 Page Corresponding Text on the Later Rosenbach “Sirens” Manuscript Ulysses Text 1922 (1992) / 1986
[1r]: “21” p. “27”–”28″ 265.31–267.04 / 11.0785–0828
[1v]: Blank NA NA
[2r]: “22” p. “28”–”30″ 267.04–268.04 / 11.0828–0866
[2v]: Blank NA NA
[3r]: “23” p. “30”–”31″ 268.04–269.02 / 11.0866–0902
[3v]: Blank NA NA
[4r]: “24” p. “31”–”33″ 269.02–270.08 / 11.0902–0946
[4v]: Blank NA NA
[5r]: “25” p. “33”–”34″ 270.09–271.08 / 11.0947–0985
[5v] p. “28” 266.31–33 / 11.0818–0820
[6r]: “26” p. “34”–”35″ 271.08–272.02 / 11.0985–1017
[6v] p. “36” 272.35–37 / 11.1050–1052
[7r]: “27” p. “35”–”36″ 272.02–28 / 11.1017–1043
[7v] p. “31” 269.04–08 & 269.15–19 / 11.0904–0908 & 11.0915–0919
[8r]: “28” p. “36”–”37″ 272.29–273.31 / 11.1044–1083
[8v] p. “37”–”38″ 273.36–274.05 / 11.1088–1094
[9r]: “29” p. “37”–”39″ 273.33–274.33 / 11.1085–1124
[9v]: Blank NA NA
[10r]: “30” p. “39”–”40″ 275.01–30 / 11.1130–1161
[10v] p. “41” 276.23–26 / 11.1192–1195
[11r]: “31” p. “40”–”41″ 275.30–276.32 / 11.1161–1201
[11v]: “33” p. “43”–”44″ 278.22–279.10 / 11.1268–1294
[12r]: “32” p. “41”–”44″ 276.32–279.03 / 11.1201–1286
[12v] NA Notes


Joyce wrote this draft in the spring of 1919 in Zurich.

Other Markings

Joyce crossed through some of the additional texts in the margins with X s on pp. [1r], [2r], [3r], [6r], [7r], [8r] and all of the text on p. [12v], all in blue crayon. There are water stains on pp. [7r] to [9r] as well as a stray red crayon mark on p. [9v]. During conservation, therefore after the manuscript’s publication in the JJA , the recto of each leaf was marked “V. A. 5.” in pencil in bottom right corner. The back cover verso is also marked “V. A. 5.” in pencil in the bottom right corner.


The manuscript has been reproduced in black and white photo-facsimile on JJA 13.032–056.

  1. La Hune, item 255; Slocum and Cahoon, item E.5.b.iv.