Thursday, March 20, 2014

Page 24 (2.1-27) "You, Cochrane... looked round"

editions: [1922] [html] [arch] [$2] [$4]
notes: [Th] [G&S] [Dent] [wbks] [rw] [images] [hyper]
Delaney: [54] [55] [56] [57] Useen: [1] [2] [3] [4] [5] [6] [8] [map] [*]

Delaney: [54]
— You, Cochrane, what city sent for him?
— Tarentum, sir.
— Very good. Well?
— There was a battle, sir.
— Very good. Where?

SD knows at least some of the boys' names (after at least 3 weeks)
he's drilling them in the barest facts of Roman history, names and dates and places that will never mean anything to them (except maybe the few who continue to university).
they consistently call him 'sir'
Ellmann seems to have thought they were c14yo, but they're so timid (unphysical, bodyless?) they sound much younger
at Clongowes the Jesuit teachers used team-competition to motivate the boys [PoA1]

The boy's blank face asked the blank window.

(this strikes me a bit as JAJ showing off, shaping the text to fit a nice phrase he had saved up)

Fabled by the daughters of memory. And yet it was in some way if not as memory fabled it. A phrase, then, of impatience, thud of Blake's wings of excess. I hear the ruin of all space, shattered glass and toppling masonry, and time one livid final flame. What's left us then?

SD is improvising phrases to himself, offering next to nothing to his students, even insensitive to their needs. it's just an hour since we saw him with Haines and BM, so the issues they raised are likely still occupying his attention (history is to blame?).

the battle was (in some way)
humanity's impatient excessive soaring 'memory' falsified it
as it falsifies everything (all space and time?)

(why "hear"?)

Delaney: [55]

— I forget the place, sir. 279 B.C.
— Asculum, Stephen said, glancing at the name and date in the gorescarred book.
— Yes, sir. And he said: Another victory like that and we are done for.

children's textbooks probably would have said 'lost' not the less formal "done for"

That phrase the world had remembered. A dull ease of the mind. From a hill above a corpsestrewn plain a general speaking to his officers, leaned upon his spear. Any general to any officers. They lend ear.

SD sneers at phrases that are memorable because they're dull and easy-- he's pursuing an arduous enigmatic manner

(composition of place, first, then universalisation)

"spear... ear"?

SD is no one's general, yet? or just these boys, barely?

Delaney: [56]

— You, Armstrong, Stephen said. What was the end of Pyrrhus?

beheaded in battle in Argos after being ignominiously stunned by a tile thrown by an old woman

SD's method of teaching is to pick a boy and ask a simple question or three

— End of Pyrrhus, sir?
— I know, sir. Ask me, sir, Comyn said.
— Wait. You, Armstrong. Do you know anything about Pyrrhus?

this phrasing sounds intentionally humiliating

A bag of figrolls lay snugly in Armstrong's satchel. He curled them between his palms at whiles and swallowed them softly. Crumbs adhered to the tissues of his lips. A sweetened boy's breath. Welloff people, proud that their eldest son was in the navy. Vico Road, Dalkey.
why does he curl them? so they're easier to sneak?

use of "at whiles" peaked during J's youth

"lips... breath" (is SD standing this close, or just imagining standing this close?)

Vico Road in 1901 census
Ellmann claims Armstrong is based on Cecil Wright (12yo in 1901, 22 in 1911) and Clifford Ferguson (ditto 1901), ie 14 or 15 in 1904!

SD himself is an oldest son, but has thrown off all the roles that would have made his parents proud

the British navy, cf Haines

both Delaney and Donnelly say VIGHco

since he's IN Dalkey, the phrase "Vico Road, Dalkey" is probably SD's impersonation of the parents' proud boasting

Delaney: [57]

— Pyrrhus, sir? Pyrrhus, a pier.
All laughed. Mirthless high malicious laughter. Armstrong looked round

mysteries: how old/how many

[DD 00:00-03:01]

[IM 00:04-02:23]

[LV1 00:27-02:34]

[LV2 00:15-01:57]

nestor: 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36

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