It's noon at the newspaper office of the Freeman Journal (and the Evening Telegraph). Bloom and a few others are gathered together in the back office.
J.J. O'Molloy, a local lawyer, bumps Bloom with the door as he enters. They make small talk, and Bloom thinks how sad it is that O'Molloy seems to be on the decline. The gossip is that he's having money troubles.
When the men begin discussing old journalists, O'Molloy praises Seymour Bush. He recalls a line that Seymour used in the Childs murder case from Hamlet, which gets Stephen thinking about the play.
O'Molloy recalls Bushe's statement about Michelangelo's statue of Moses in the Vatican. Stephen finds "his blood wooed by grace of language and gesture" (7.403). He blushes and takes a cigarette.
O'Molloy begins to tell Stephen that Professor Magennis has been asking about him. Magennis heard that Stephen had stopped the mystical poet, George William Russell, in the street to ask him about planes of consciousness. The professor thinks that Stephen was simply joking with Russell.
MacHugh re-enacts the finest piece of oratory he has ever heard, a speech by John F. Taylor on the revival of the Irish tongue. When he finishes it, O'Molloy notes that "he died without having entered the land of promise" referring to Moses but also invoking the many devotees of Irish independence like Parnell that never saw the realization of what they were fighting for (7.437).
O'Molloy stops Crawford to ask him for a loan.
After some commotion with Bloom, Crawford turns to O'Molloy and apologizes. He says that he won't be able to give him the loan. O'Molloy strides on silently.
Episode 10: The Wanderings of Ulysses
Here, we again see O'Molloy trying to discuss his debts, this time with Ned Lambert. Lambert, however, goes into a sneezing fit before he has a chance to say anything.
Episode 12: Cyclops
J.J. O'Molloy enters and is greeted all around. He announces he was down at the courthouse and tells them a bit about the proceedings.
O'Molloy starts telling them about some of the swindling cases in court. They discuss the recorder, Sir Frederick Falkner, who would always take sympathy with the man who was in debt.
Later, O'Molloy begins remembering Lord Nelson's battle against Corsica, and Sinn Fein's early call to impeach the nation of England. Bloom calls for moderation, but is roundly ignored.
The citizen curses England at length.
O'Molloy starts to say something about the European family, but the citizen insists that England is not part of the European family and that whatever civilization the country has was stolen from Ireland.
O'Molloy and the citizen argue about law and history.
When the talk turns to England, J.J. thinks that at least they have King Edward VII now, but the citizen detests Edward too.
O'Molloy laughs at how Bloom doesn't know which country he is from.
Later, O'Molloy and Lenehan joke about how every Jew thinks he's the Messiah.
Episode 15: Circe
In Bloom's imagined court case against himself, O'Molloy acts as his lawyer. He suggests that Bloom is mentally deranged and provides a number of other excuses for his behavior. A few moments later, O'Molloy acts upset and then begins acting like Seymour Bushe (as he did in "Aeolus").