Annotations to James Joyce's Ulysses/Circe/467



Leopoldi autem generatio     (Latin) Now, the begetting of Leopold.[1] The words parody the opening of Matthew 1:18:

Matthew 1:18[2]

Christi autem generatio sic erat: cum esset desponsata mater eius Maria Ioseph, antequam convenirent, inventa est in utero habens de Spiritu Sancto.

Now the birth of Jesus Christ was on this wise: When as his mother Mary was espoused to Joseph, before they came together, she was found with child of the Holy Ghost.

But the genealogy of Christ is given in Matthew 1:1, which would make more sense here:

Matthew 1:1[3]

Liber generationis Iesu Christi filii David filii Abraham.

The book of the generation of Jesus Christ, the son of David, the son of Abraham.

et vocabitur nomen eius Emmanuel     (Latin) and his name shall be called Emmanuel.[4] The words allude to Isaiah 7:14:

Isaiah 7:14[5]

Propter hoc dabit Dominus ipse vobis signum; ecce, virgo concipiet, et pariet filium, et vocabitis nomen eius Emmanuhel.

Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and you shall call his name Immanuel.

This verse is cited in Matthew 1:23:

Matthew 1:23[6]

Ecce, virgo in utero habebit, et pariet filium, et vocabunt nomen eius Emmanuhel, quod est interpretatum, Nobiscum Deus.

Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us.

Joyce's form also recalls Isaiah 9:6, which is quoted in the Hallelujah Chorus of Handel's Messiah (alluded to below at 470.21):

Isaiah 9:6[7]

Parvulus enim natus est nobis, filius datus est nobis: et factus est principatus super umerum eius: et vocabitur nomen eius Admirabilis, Consiliarius, Deus fortis, Pater futuri saeculi, Princeps pacis.

For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.


  1. Gifford (1988) 482.
    Thornton (1968) 384.
  2. Matthew 1:18.
  3. Matthew 1:1.
  4. Gifford (1988) 483.
    Thornton (1968) 384.
  5. Isaiah 7:14.
  6. Matthew 1:23.
  7. Isaiah 9:6.
Annotations to James Joyce's Ulysses
Preceding Page | Page Index | Next Page