Counterparts by James Joyce

Plot: Humiliated  by his boss (Mr. Alleyne) at the law firm in which he works, a copy clerk named Farrington pawns his watch and spends the money on a night of drinking in Dublin pubs. Afterward, he goes to his house in the suburbs, where he vents his rage by beating one of his five children (Tom).

Characters:

  • Farrington
  • Tom
  • The boss (Mr. Alleyne)

Glossary

the tube: a machine for communicating within a building.

an order on the cashier: official permission for an advance on wages.

snug: a small private room or booth in a public house.

g.p. : a glass (half-pint) of porter.

caraway: a white-flowered biennial herb of the umbel family, with spicey, strong-smelling seeds. The seeds, when chewed, were thought to hide the smell of alcohol, and thus were offered to customers by turn-of-the-century Dublin bars.

manikin: a little man; dwarf.

instanter: without delay; immediately.

the dart: the solution.

stood . . . a half-one:  bought a half measure of alcohol.

the eclogues: short pastoral poems, often in the form of a dialogue between two shepherds.

my nabs (slang): my friend or acquaintance.

Ballast Offices: the location of the Dublin Port and Docks Board

Irish and Apollinaris:  whiskey and soda.

too Irish (slang): exceedingly generous.

chaffed: teased good naturedly.

tincture: a trace; a smattering.

small hot specials whiskey: mixed with water and sugar.

bitter: bitter, strongly hopped ale.

stood to: bought for.

smahan: a smattering; a smidgen.

barracks: buildings on Shelbourne Road for housing British soldiers.

 

Peony: is a pink whitish flower

 

That’s the knack:The quality of the gifted one

 

Put in your gab:to talk

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