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Work in Progress"/Finnegans Wake Notebook (1926–1927)

Material Description

The manuscript is a different kind of pocket-sized notebook, with light gray pliable cloth covers. It is unlike any other notebook in the Joyce archive. Joyce’s notes are in several kinds of lead pencil, except on p. [017] where the list of emendations is in blue ink. Joyce wrote further notes over ones he had already written on pp. [182] and [183]. The notes on p. [172] in lead pencil are not in Joyce’s hand.

Joyce used red, orange, blue, and green colored crayons to cross through notes he had used in his manuscripts.


The manuscript consists of 112 leaves (224 pages) of light black lined graph paper in 7 stitched gatherings of 32 pages each; none of the pages are detached. The front cover verso, back cover recto, and both flyleaves are plain white paper. All of the pages are inscribed, including the front cover verso, back cover recto, and all sides of the flyleaves. Joyce filled the front flyleaf verso upside down and wrote some of the notes vertically throughout the notebook.


The manuscript measures 19.1 x 12.5 cm.


The pages are not numbered.


Joyce compiled this notebook from late September 1926 to late January 1927 in Paris (TD 28).

Other Markings

Joyce wrote "t 13" in green crayon on the front cover verso. He also wrote "t12" in blue crayon on the front flyleaf recto and wrote "2" upside down in red crayon in the lower right corner of the front flyleaf recto. There is a white label printed in black ink pasted to the front flyleaf recto that reads: "L. 4528".
Mme Raphael marked the back cover recto with an "R" in black ink, presumably after she had transcribed the notebook. There are purple crayon marks on the front cover verso and a stray black ink mark on p. [002]. There are black ink stains on p. [197] and on front cover recto, some of the edges of the last pages, as well as on the back cover verso.


The manuscript has been reproduced in black and white photo-facsimile in JJA 32.241–355.


  Mme Raphael, Joyce’s amanuensis in Paris in 1936 to early 1937, transcribed the notes Joyce did not cross through in this notebook as follows:

Primary Notebook Scribal Notebook
MS VI.B.15, front cover verso–[018] MS VI.C.13, p. [265]–back flyleaf recto; continued on
MS VI.B.15, p. [018]–back cover recto MS VI.C.14, pp. [001]–[161]