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VI.C.5: "Work in Progress"/Finnegans Wake Scribal Notebook (1935)

Material Description

The manuscript has floral-designed dark blue 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. [058], [066], [074], [127], [131], [147], [172] that are in Joyce’s hand in lead pencil; notes on pp. [185], [190], [192], [195], [258], and [259] are in Joyce’s hand in blue crayon. 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 are inscribed, including the back flyleaf recto; none are blank.


The manuscript measures 18.8 x 14.5 cm.


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

Scribal Notebooks Primary Notebooks JJA
MS VI.C.5, pp. [001]–[091] [MS VI.D.3; missing notebook(s); continued] 41.299–321
MS VI.C.5, pp. [092]–[169] MS VI.B.10, pp. [001]–[120] 41.321–341
MS VI.C.5, pp. [170]–[221] MS VI.B.17, pp. [001]–[068] 41.341–354
MS VI.C.5, pp. [221]–[223] [MS VI.B.17; missing pages]; see also VI.C.11, pp. [059]–[061] 41.354
MS VI.C.5, pp. [224]–[280] MS VI.B.7, front flyleaf recto–p. [197] 41.354–368


The pages are not numbered.


Mme Raphael prepared the transcriptions in this notebook in early 1935 in Paris (TD 33) and Joyce used the notebook from 1935 to 1936.

Other Markings

The notebook was marked "5" in red crayon on the back flyleaf recto, probably by Joyce. There is an upside down stamped purple stationer’s mark on the back flyleaf recto that reads: "38".


The manuscript has been reproduced in black and white photo-facsimile in JJA 41.298–369. MS VI.B.10 was published in The Finnegans Wake Notebooks at Buffalo: VI.B.10, edited by Vincent Deane, Daniel Ferrer and Geert Lernout (Turnhout, Belgium: Brepols, 2001).


There was most likely at least one other extant inscribed page of MS VI.B.10 when it was transcribed, which accounts for the 4 other entries on MS V.C.5, p. [169]; it is no longer with the notebook.

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".