— He took umbrage at something or other, that muchinjured but on the whole eventempered person declared, I let slip. He called me a jew and in a heated fashion offensively. So I without deviating from plain facts in the least told him his God, I mean Christ, was a jew too and all his family like me though in reality I'm not. That was one for him. A soft answer turns away wrath. He hadn't a word to say for himself as everyone saw. Am I not right?
He turned a long you are wrong gaze on Stephen of timorous dark pride at the soft impeachment with a glance also of entreaty for he seemed to glean in a kind of a way that it wasn't all exactly.
— Ex quibus, Stephen mumbled in a noncommittal accent, their two or four eyes conversing, Christus or Bloom his name is or after all any other, secundum carnem.
— Of course, Mr B. proceeded to stipulate, you must look at both sides of the question. It is hard to lay down any hard and fast rules as to right and wrong but room for improvement all round there certainly is though every country, they say, our own distressful included, has the government it deserves. But with a little goodwill all round. It's all very fine to boast of mutual superiority but what about mutual equality. I resent violence and intolerance in any shape or form. It never reaches anything or stops anything. A revolution must come on the due instalments plan. It's a patent absurdity on the face of it to hate people because they live round the corner and speak another vernacular, in the next house so to speak.
— Memorable bloody bridge battle and seven minutes' war, Stephen assented, between Skinner's alley and Ormond market.
Yes, Mr Bloom thoroughly agreed, entirely endorsing the remark, that was overwhelmingly right. And the whole world was full of that sort of thing.
— You just took the words out of my mouth, he said. A hocuspocus of conflicting evidence that candidly you couldn't remotely . . .
All those wretched quarrels, in his humble opinion, stirring up bad blood, from some bump of combativeness or gland of some kind, erroneously supposed to be about a punctilio of honour and a flag, were very largely a question of the money question which was at the back of everything greed and jealousy, people never knowing when to stop.
— They accuse, remarked he audibly.
He turned away from the others who probably and spoke nearer to, so as the others in case they.
— Jews, he softly imparted in an aside in Stephen's ear, are accused of ruining. Not a vestige of truth in it, I can safely say. History, would you be surprised to learn, proves up to the hilt Spain decayed when the inquisition hounded the jews out and England prospered when Cromwell, an uncommonly able ruffian who in other respects has much to answer for, imported them. Why? Because they are imbued with the proper spirit. They are practical and are proved to be so. I don't want to indulge in any because you know the standard works on the subject and then orthodox as you are. But in the economic, not touching religion, domain the priest spells poverty. Spain again, you saw in the war, compared with goahead America. Turks. It's in the dogma. Because if they didn't believe they'd go straight to heaven when they die they'd try to live better, at least so I think. That's the juggle on which the p.p's raise the wind on false pretences. I'm, he resumed with dramatic force, as good an Irishman as that rude person I told you about at the outset and I want to see everyone, concluded he, all creeds and classes pro rata having a comfortable tidysized income, in no niggard fashion either, something in the neighbourhood of 300 pounds per annum. That's the vital issue at stake and it's feasible and would be provocative of friendlier intercourse between man and man. At least that's my idea for what it's worth. I call that patriotism. Ubi patria, as we learned a smattering of in our classical days in Alma Mater, vita bene. Where you can live well, the sense is, if you work.
Over his untastable apology for a cup of coffee, listening to this synopsis of things in general, Stephen stared at nothing in particular. He could hear, of course, all kinds of words changing colour like those crabs about Ringsend in the morning burrowing quickly into all colours of different sorts of the same sand where they had a home somewhere beneath or seemed to. Then he looked up and saw the eyes that said or didn't say the words the voice he heard said, if you work.
— Count me out, he managed to remark, meaning work.
The eyes were surprised at this observation because as he, the person who owned them pro tem. observed or rather his voice speaking did, all must work, have to, together.
— I mean, of course, the other hastened to affirm, work in the widest possible sense. Also literary labour not merely for the kudos of the thing. Writing for the newspapers which is the readiest channel nowadays. That's work too. Important work. After all, from the little I know of you, after all the money expended on your education you are entitled to recoup yourself and command your price. You have every bit as much right to live by your pen in pursuit of your philosophy as the peasant has. What? You both belong to Ireland, the brain and the brawn. Each is equally important.
— You suspect, Stephen retorted with a sort of a half laugh, that I may be important because I belong to the faubourg Saint Patrice called Ireland for short.
— I would go a step farther, Mr Bloom insinuated.
— But I suspect, Stephen interrupted, that Ireland must be important because it belongs to me.
— What belongs, queried Mr Bloom bending, fancying he was perhaps under some misapprehension. Excuse me. Unfortunately, I didn't catch the latter portion. What was it you . . . ?
Stephen, patently crosstempered, repeated and shoved aside his mug of coffee or whatever you like to call it none too politely, adding: 1170
— We can't change the country. Let us change the subject.
At this pertinent suggestion Mr Bloom, to change the subject, looked down but in a quandary, as he couldn't tell exactly what construction to put on belongs to which sounded rather a far cry. The rebuke of some kind was clearer than the other part. Needless to say the fumes of his recent orgy spoke then with some asperity in a curious bitter way foreign to his sober state. Probably the homelife to which Mr B attached the utmost importance had not been all that was needful or he hadn't been familiarised with the right sort of people. With a touch of fear for the young man beside him whom he furtively scrutinised with an air of some consternation remembering he had just come back from Paris, the eyes more especially reminding him forcibly of father and sister, failing to throw much light on the subject, however, he brought to mind instances of cultured fellows that promised so brilliantly nipped in the bud of premature decay and nobody to blame but themselves. For instance there was the case of O'Callaghan, for one, the halfcrazy faddist, respectably connected though of inadequate means, with his mad vagaries among whose other gay doings when rotto and making himself a nuisance to everybody all round he was in the habit of ostentatiously sporting in public a suit of brown paper (a fact). And then the usual denouement after the fun had gone on fast and furious he got 1190 landed into hot water and had to be spirited away by a few friends, after a strong hint to a blind horse from John Mallon of Lower Castle Yard, so as not to be made amenable under section two of the criminal law amendment act, certain names of those subpoenaed being handed in but not divulged for reasons which will occur to anyone with a pick of brains. Briefly, putting two and two together, six sixteen which he pointedly turned a deaf ear to, Antonio and so forth, jockeys and esthetes and the tattoo which was all the go in the seventies or thereabouts even in the house of lords because early in life the occupant of the throne, then heir apparent, the other members of the upper ten and other high personages simply following in the footsteps of the head of the state, he reflected about the errors of notorieties and crowned heads running counter to morality such as the Cornwall case a number of years before under their veneer in a way scarcely intended by nature, a thing good Mrs Grundy, as the law stands, was terribly down on though not for the reason they thought they were probably whatever it was except women chiefly who were always fiddling more or less at one another it being largely a matter of dress and all the rest of it. Ladies who like distinctive underclothing should, and every welltailored man must, trying to make the gap wider between them by innuendo and give more of a genuine filip to acts of impropriety between the two, she unbuttoned his and then he untied her, mind the pin, whereas savages in the cannibal islands, say, at ninety degrees in the shade not caring a continental. However, reverting to the original, there were on the other hand others who had forced their way to the top from the lowest rung by the aid of their bootstraps. Sheer force of natural genius, that. With brains, sir.