© 2014 Shmoop University, Inc. All rights reserved.
Ulysses

Ulysses

by James Joyce

Time Quotes Page 2

How we cite our quotes:

Quote #4

Back of everything magnetism. Earth for instance pulling this and being pulled. That causes movement. And time? Well that's the time the movement takes. Then if one thing stopped the whole ghesabo would stop bit by bit. Because it's arranged. Magnetic needle tells you what's going on in the sun, the stars. Little piece of iron. (13.99)

In "Nausicaa," finding that his watch has stopped, Bloom begins to speculate on the nature of time. Considering that most of us don't fully understand how a watch works and that nobody understands how time itself works, in what ways is time a mystery? How can thinking about it change one's perspective on the events in the novel, especially since the novel itself is so carefully mapped out according to time?

Quote #5

Don't know what death is at that age. (13.114)

In "Nausicaa," this is one of Bloom's thoughts about his daughter Milly's confidence and enthusiasm for life. How can the passage of time make a thing more comprehensible? Why is it harder to imagine death when it's far off but not when we are closer to it? Isn't it unimaginable either way?

Quote #6

Therefore, everyman, look to that last end that is thy death and the dust that gripeth on every man that is born of woman for as he came naked forth from his mother's womb so naked shall he wend him at the last for to go as he came. (14.12)

In "Oxen of the Sun," the narrator mimics Middle English prose as he speculates on the nature of birth. Obviously, these lines could just as easily have gone in the "Mortality" section, but what we're interested in here is the religious view of time and how it ties into personal conceptions of time. How does the religious view of time differ from the sense of time we get by measuring it on a clock? If it weren't for death, do you think that we would even bother to measure time?

Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement