James Joyce Quotes

James Joyce is one of Ireland’s most celebrated writers and probably its most influential.

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He is best known for his novels Ulysses, A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man and Finnegan’s Wake. He also wrote a series of short stories called Dubliners and numerous poems.

His claim to be Ireland’s most influential writer stems from his use of the ‘stream of consciousness’ technique in which the thoughts of his characters come tumbling out one after another with little need for storyline or plot. It was a technique later embraced by numerous other writers across the world.

Ogham, the mysterious language of the trees The Origins of the Ogham alphabet are still a mystery for many historians, but it is primarily thought to be an early form of the Irish written Language. Bealtaine Fire

Many of Joyce’s best known quotes relate to Ireland, writing and the creative process.

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James Joyce quote. What is better than to sit at the end of the day to drink wine with friends, or substitutes for friends. Image copyright Ireland Calling

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But my body was like a harp and her words and gestures were like fingers running upon the wires.

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I’ve put in so many enigmas and puzzles that it will keep the professors busy for centuries arguing over what I meant, and that’s the only way of insuring one’s immortality.

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James Joyce quote. The light music of whiskey falling into a glass - an agreeable interlude. Image copyright Ireland Calling

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There is no heresy or no philosophy which is so abhorrent to the church as a human being.

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James Joyce quote. Better pass boldly into that other world. Image copyright Ireland Calling

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I am tomorrow, or some future day, what I establish today. I am today what I established yesterday or some previous day.

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James Joyce quote. Your battles inspired me. Image copyright Ireland Calling

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I think a child should be allowed to take his father’s or mother’s name at will on coming of age. Paternity is a legal fiction.

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James Joyce quote. When I die Dublin will be written in my heart. Image copyright Ireland Calling

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Men are governed by lines of intellect – women: by curves of emotion.

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Whatever else is unsure in this stinking dunghill of a world a mother’s love is not.

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James Joyce quote. Christopher Columbus is honoured by posterity because he was the last to discover America. Image copyright Ireland Calling

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Nations have their ego, just like individuals.

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The actions of men are the best interpreters of their thoughts.

James Joyce quote. Mistakes are the portals of discovery. Image copyright Ireland Calling


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