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VI.C.4: "Work in Progress"/Finnegans Wake Scribal Notebook (1933)

Material Description

The manuscript has floral-designed maroon covers over boards, with a black tape spine, which is worn but intact, and the edges of all the leaves are speckled blue-and-white. There are blue-and-white marbled design papers pasted to the front cover verso and back cover recto; the front flyleaf verso and back flyleaf recto are plain white, unlined paper. The notes are in the hand of Mme Raphael in black ink, except for some notes on pp. [092], [132], [133], [141], [166], [168], [182], [186], [188], [189], [193], [194], [263], [270], and [277] that are in Joyce’s hand in lead pencil. Joyce used red as well as blue colored crayons to cross through the notes he had used in his manuscripts. There are also vertical red and blue crayon marks beside some of the uncrossed notes, presumably by Joyce.


The manuscript consists of 140 leaves (280 pages) of blue horizontally ruled paper, 12 stitched gatherings (the 1st and 12th gatherings are composed of 20 pages and the 2nd through 11th gatherings are composed of 24 pages); none of the pages are detached. All of the pages as well as the back flyleaf recto are inscribed; only the front flyleaf verso is blank.


The manuscript measures 18.8 x 14.5 cm.


The notebook contains transcriptions of Joyce’s notes in the following primary notebooks:

Scribal Notebook Primary Notebooks JJA
MS VI.C.4, pp. [001]–[027] MS VI.B.20, p. [068]–back cover recto 41.225–231
MS VI.C.4, pp. [028]–[153] MS VI.B.5, front cover verso–p. [161] 41.231–263
MS VI.C.4, pp. [154]–[219] MS VI.B.9, p. [001]–back cover recto 41.263–279
MS VI.C.4, pp. [220]–[280] [MS VI.D.3; missing notebook(s); first part] 41.279–294


The pages are not numbered.


Mme Raphael prepared the transcriptions in this notebook in late 1933 in Paris (TD 32) and Joyce used the notebook from 1935 to 1938.

Other Markings

On the back flyleaf recto, the notebook was marked "4" in red crayon, probably by Joyce, and there is what appears to be a "c" within a square box in Joyce’s hand in black ink. There is a stamped purple stationer’s mark on the front flyleaf verso that reads: "38".


The manuscript has been reproduced in black and white photo-facsimile in JJA 41.224–295. MS VI.B.5 was published in The Finnegans Wake Notebooks at Buffalo: VI.B.5, edited by Vincent Deane, Daniel Ferrer and Geert Lernout (Turnhout, Belgium: Brepols, 2004).


There is a printed stationer’s label on the front cover verso that reads: "Papeterie Imprimerie | – RELIURE – | A. Roques | & Fils | 1 & 3, Rue de Condé | 4, Rue de l’Odéon | PARIS (VIe) | DANTON 02-50".