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Early drafts of the HCE vignette of Finnegans Wake

Here are various layers and variants for the HCE vignette. For more info, see: ftp://ftp.trentu.ca/pub/jjoyce/newgame/hce.txt (130k)

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First draft, August 1923:

...genesis of Humphrey Coxon's agnomen the most authentic version has it that like Cincinnatus he was one day at his plough when royalty was announced on the highroad. Forgetful of all but his fealty he hastened out on to the road, holding aloft a long perch atop of which a flowerpot was affixed. On his majesty, who was rather longsighted from early youth, inquiring whether he had been engaged in lobstertrapping Humphrey bluntly answered 'No, my liege, I was only a cotching of them bluggy earwigs'. The King upon this smiled heartily and, giving way to that none too genial humour which he had inherited from his great aunt Sophy, turned to two of his retinue the lord of Offaly and the mayor of Waterford (the syndic of Drogheda according to a later version) remarking 'How our brother of Burgundy would fume did he know that he have this trusty vassal a turnpiker who is also an earwicker'. True facts as this legend may be it is certain that from that date all documents initialled by Humphrey bear the sigla H.C.E. and whether he was always Coxon for his cronies and good duke Humphrey for the ragged tiny folk of Lucalizod it was certainly a a pleasant turn of the populace which gave him as sense of those initials the nickname 'Here Comes Everything'. Imposing enough indeed he looked and worthy of that title as he sat on gala nights in the royal booth with wardrobepanelled coat thrown back from a shirt wellnamed a swallowall far outstarching the laundered lordies and marbletopped highboys of the pit. A baser meaning has been read into these letters, the literal sense of which decency can but touch. It has been suggested that he suffered from a vile disease. To such a suggestion the only selfrespecting answer is to affirm that there are certain statements which ought not to be, and one would like to be able to add, ought not to be allowed to be made. Nor have his detractors mended their case by insinuating that he was at one time under the imputation of annoying soldiers in the park. To anyone who knew and loved H - C - E -- the suggestion is preposterous. Slander, let it do its worst, has never been able to convict that good and great man of any greater misdemeanour that that of an incautious exposure (and partial at that) in the presence of certain nursemaids whose testimony is, if not dubious, at any rate slightly divergent.


Fourth draft, September 1923 (corrected)

Now, concerning the genesis of Harold or Humphrey Chimpden's occupational agnomen and discarding once for all those theories from older sources which would link him back with such pivotal ancestors as the Glues, the Gravys, the Northeasts, the Ankers and the Earwickers of Sidlesham in the hundred of manhood or proclaim him a descendant of vikings who had founded or settled in Herrick or Eric the best authenticated version has it that it was this way. We are told how in the beginning it came to pass that, like cabbaging Cincinnatus, the grand old gardener was saving daylight one sultry sabbath afternoon in prefall paradise peace by following his plough for rootles in the rere garden of ye olde marine hotel when royalty was announced by runner to have been pleased to have halted itself on the highroad along which a leisureloving dogfox had cast followed, also at walking pace, by a lady pack of cocker spaniels. Forgetful of all save his vassal's plain fealty to the ethnarch Humphrey or Harold stayed not to yoke or saddle but stumbled out hotface as he was (his sweatful bandanna loose from his pocketcoat) hasting to the forecourts of his public in topee, surcingle, plus fours and bulldog boots ruddled with red marl, jingling his turnpike keys and bearing aloft amid the fixed pikes of the hunting party a high perch atop of which a flowerpot was fixed earthside up with care. On his majesty, who was, or often feigned to be, noticeably longsighted from green youth, and had been meaning to inquire what, in effect, had caused yon causeway to be so potholed, asking, substitutionally, to be put wise as to whether paternoster and silver doctors were not now more fancied bait for lobstertrapping honest blunt Haromphreyld answered in no uncertain tones very similarly with a fearless forehead: Naw, yer maggers, aw war jist a cotchin on thon bluggy earwuggers. Our Sailor King, who was draining a gugglet of obvious water, upon this, ceasing to swallow, smiled most heartily beneath his walrus moustaches and indulging that none too genial humour which William the Conk on the spindle side had inherited with the hereditary whitelock and some shortfingeredness from his great aunt Sophy, turned towards two of his retinue of gallowglasses, Michael, etheling lord of Leix in Offaly and the jubilee mayor of Drogheda, Elcock, (the two scatterguns being Michael Manning, protosyndic of Waterford and an Italian excellency named Giubilei according to a later version cited by the learned scholarch Canavan of Canmakenoise) and remarked dilsydulsily: Holybones, how our red brother of Pouringrainia would audibly fume did he know that we have for trusty bailiwick a turnpiker who is by turns a pikebailer no seldomer than an earwigger! Comes the question are these the facts as recorded in both or either of the collateral andrewpomurphyc narratives. We shall perhaps not so soon see. The great fact emerges that after that historic date all holographs so far exhumed initialled by Haromphrey bear the sigla H.C.E. and while he was only and long and always good dook Umphrey for the hungerlean spalpeens of Lucalizod and Chimbers to his cronies it was equally certainly a pleasant turn of the populace which gave him as sense of those normative letters the nickname Here Comes Everybody. An imposing everybody he always indeed looked, constantly the same as himself and magnificently well worthy of any and all such universalisation, every time he continually surveyed from good start to happy finish the truly catholic assemblage gathered together from all quarters unanimously to applaud Mr. W.W. Semperkelly's immergreen tourers in the problem passion play of the millentury a Royal Divorce with ambitious interval band selections from the Bo Girl and The Lily on all gala command nights from his viceregal booth where, a veritable Napoleon the Fourth, this father of the people all of the time sat having the entirety of his house about him with the invariable broadstretched kerchief cooling his whole neck, nape and shoulderblades and in a wardrobepanelled tuxedo completely thrown back from a shirt well entitled a swallowall, on every point far outstarching the laundered clawhammers and marbletopped highboys of the pit stalls and early amphitheatre. A baser meaning has been read into these characters the literal sense of which decency can safely scarcely hint. It has been blurtingly bruited by certain wisecracks that he suffered from a vile disease. To such a suggestion the one selfrespecting answer is to affirm that there are certain statements which ought not to be, and one should like to be able to add, ought not to be allowed to be made. Nor have his detractors, who, an imperfectly warmblooded race, apparently conceive him as a great white catterpillar capable of any and every enormity in the calendar recorded to the discredit of the Juke and Kellikek families, mended their case by insinuating that, alternatively, he lay at one time under the ludicrous imputation of annoying Welsh fusiliers in the people's park. To anyone who knew and loved the Christlikeness of the big cleanminded giant H.C. Earwicker throughout his long existence the mere suggestion of him as a lustsleuth nosing for trouble in a boobytrap rings particularly preposterous. Truth compels one to add that there is said to have once been some case of the kind implicating, it is sometimes believed, a quidam about that time walking around Dublin with a bad record who has remained completely anonymous but was, it is stated, posted at Mallon's at the instance of watch warriors of the vigilance committee, and years afterwards, writes one, seemingly dropped dead whilst waiting for a chop somewhere near Hawkins street. Slander, let it lie its flattest, has never been able to convict that good and great and no ordinary Southron Earwicker, as a pious author calls him, of any graver impropriety than that, advanced by some woodward or regarder who did not dare deny that he had that day consumed the soul of the corn, of having behaved in an ungentlemanly manner opposite a pair of dainty maidservants in the greenth of the rushy hollow, whither, or so the two gown and pinners pleaded, dame nature in all innocency had spontaneously and about the same hour of the eventide sent them both but whose published combinations of testimonies are, where not dubiously pure, visibly divergent on minor points touching the intimate nature of this, a first offence in vert or venison which was admittedly an incautious but, at its widest, a partial exposure with such attenuating circumstances as an abnormal Saint Martin's summer and a ripe occasion to provoke it.

[Old zine] First publication June 1925


Published version, 1939, FW30-33

Now (to forebare for ever solittle of Iris Trees and Lili O'Rangans), concerning the genesis of Harold or Humphrey Chimpden's occupational agnomen (we are back in the presurnames prodromarith period, of course just when enos chalked halltraps) and discarding once for all those theories from older sources which would link him back with such pivotal ancestors as the Glues, the Gravys, the Northeasts, the Ankers and the Earwickers of Sidlesham in the Hundred of Manhood or proclaim him offsprout of vikings who had founded wapentake and seddled hem in Herrick or Eric, the best authenticated version, the Dumlat, read the Reading of Hofed-ben-Edar, has it that it was this way. We are told how in the beginning it came to pass that like cabbaging Cincinnatus the grand old gardener was saving daylight under his redwoodtree one sultry sabbath afternoon, Hag Chivychas Eve, in prefall paradise peace by following his plough for rootles in the rere garden of mobhouse, ye olde marine hotel, when royalty was announced by runner to have been pleased to have halted itself on the highroad along which a leisureloving dogfox had cast followed, also at walking pace, by a lady pack of cocker spaniels. Forgetful of all save his vassal's plain fealty to the ethnarch Humphrey or Harold stayed not to yoke or saddle but stumbled out hotface as he was (his sweatful bandanna loose from his pocketcoat) hasting to the forecourts of his public in topee, surcingle, solascarf and plaid, plus fours, puttees and bulldog boots ruddled cinnabar with flagrant marl, jingling his turnpike keys and bearing aloft amid the fixed pikes of the hunting party a high perch atop of which a flowerpot was fixed earthside hoist with care. On his majesty, who was, or often feigned to be, noticeably longsighted from green youth and had been meaning to inquire what, in effect, had caused yon causeway to be thus potholed, asking substitutionally to be put wise as to whether paternoster and silver doctors were not now more fancied bait for lobstertrapping honest blunt Haromphreyld answered in no uncertain tones very similarly with a fearless forehead: Naw, yer maggers, aw war jist a cotchin on thon bluggy earwuggers. Our sailor king, who was draining a gugglet of obvious adamale, gift both and gorban, upon this, ceasing to swallow, smiled most heartily beneath his walrus moustaches and indulging that none too genial humour which William the Conk on the spindle side had inherited with the hereditary whitelock and some shortfingeredness from his greataunt Sophy, turned towards two of his retinue of gallowglasses, Michael, etheling lord of Leix and Offaly and the jubilee mayor of Drogheda, Elcock, (the two scatterguns being Michael M. Manning, protosyndic of Waterford and an Italian excellency named Giubilei according to a later version cited by the learned scholarch Canavan of Canmakenoise), in either case a triptychal religious family symbolising puritas of doctrina, business per usuals and the purchypatch of hamlock where the paddish preties grow and remarked dilsydulsily: Holybones of Saint Hubert how our red brother of Pouringrainia would audibly fume did he know that we have for surtrusty bailiwick a turnpiker who is by turns a pikebailer no seltomer than an earwigger! For he kinned Jom Pill with his court so gray and his haunts in his house in the mourning. (One still hears that pebble crusted laughta, japijap cheerycherrily, among the roadside tree the lady Holmpatrick planted and still one feels the amossive silence of the cladstone allegibelling: Ive mies outs ide Bourn.) Comes the question are these the facts of his nominigentilisation as recorded and accolated in both or either of the collateral andrewpaulmurphyc narratives. Are those their fata which we read in sibylline between the fas and its nefas? No dung on the road? And shall Nohomiah be our place like? Yea, Mulachy our kingable khan? We shall perhaps not so soon see. Pinck poncks that bail for seeks alicence where cumsceptres with scentaurs stay. Bear in mind, son of Hokmah, if so be you have metheg in your midness, this man is mountain and unto changeth doth one ascend. Heave we aside the fallacy, as punical as finikin, that it was not the king kingself but his inseparable sisters, uncontrollable nighttalkers, Skertsiraizde with Donyahzade, who afterwards, when the robberers shot up the socialights, came down into the world as amusers and were staged by Madame Sudlow as Rosa and Lily Miskinguette in the pantalime that two pitts paythronosed, Miliodorus and Galathee. The great fact emerges that after that historic date all holographs so far exhumed initialled by Haromphrey bear the sigla H.C.E. and while he was only and long and always good Dook Umphrey for the hungerlean spalpeens of Lucalizod and Chimbers to his cronies it was equally certainly a pleasant turn of the populace which gave him as sense of those normative letters the nickname Here Comes Everybody. An imposing everybody he always indeed looked, constantly the same as and equal to himself and magnificently well worthy of any and all such universalisation, every time he continually surveyed, amid vociferatings from in front of Accept these few nutties! and Take off that white hat!, relieved with Stop his Grog and Put It in the Log and Loots in his (bassvoco) Boots, from good start to happy finish the truly catholic assemblage gathered together in that king's treat house of satin alustrelike above floats and footlights from their assbawlveldts and oxgangs unanimously to clapplaud (the inspiration of his lifetime and the hits of their careers) Mr Wallenstein Washington Semperkelly's immergreen tourers in a command performance by special request with the courteous permission for pious purposes the homedromed and enliventh performance of problem passion play of the millentury, running strong since creation, A Royal Divorce, then near the approach towards the summit of its climax, with ambitious interval band selections from The Bo' Girl and The Lily on all horserie show command nights from his viceregal booth (his bossaloner is ceilinged there a cuckoospit less eminent than the redritualhoods of Maccabe and Cullen) where, a veritable Napoleon the Nth, our worldstage's practical jokepiece and retired cecelticocommediant in his own wise, this folksforefather all of the time sat, having the entirety of his house about him, with the invariable broadstretched kerchief cooling his whole neck, nape and shoulderblades and in a wardrobe panelled tuxedo completely thrown back from a shirt well entitled a swallowall, on every point far outstarching the laundered clawhammers and marbletopped highboys of the pit stalls and early amphitheatre. The piece was this: look at the lamps. The cast was thus: see under the clock. Ladies circle: cloaks may be left. Pit, prommer and parterre, standing room only. Habituels conspicuously emergent.

A baser meaning has been read into these characters the literal sense of which decency can safely scarcely hint. It has been blurtingly bruited by certain wisecrackers (the stinks of Mohorat are in the nightplots of the morning), that he suffered from a vile disease. Athma, unmanner them! To such a suggestion the one selfrespecting answer is to affirm that there are certain statements which ought not to be, and one should like to hope to be able to add, ought not to be allowed to be made. Nor have his detractors, who, an imperfectly warmblooded race, apparently conceive him as a great white caterpillar capable of any and every enormity in the calendar recorded to the discredit of the Juke and Kellikek families, mended their case by insinuating that, alternately, he lay at one time under the ludicrous imputation of annoying Welsh fusiliers in the people's park. Hay, hay, hay! Hoq, hoq, hoq! Faun and Flora on the lea love that little old joq. To anyone who knew and loved the christlikeness of the big cleanminded giant H. C. Earwicker throughout his excellency long vicefreegal existence the mere suggestion of him as a lustsleuth nosing for trouble in a boobytrap rings particularly preposterous. Truth, beard on prophet, compels one to add that there is said to have been quondam (pfuit! pfuit!) some case of the kind implicating, it is interdum believed, a quidam (if he did not exist it would be necessary quoniam to invent him) abhout that time stambuling haround Dumbaling in leaky sneakers with his tarrk record who has remained topantically anonymos but (let us hue him Abdullah Gamellaxarksky) was, it is stated, posted at Mallon's at the instance of watch warriors of the vigilance committee and years afterwards, cries one even greater, Ibid, a commender of the frightful, seemingly, unto such as were sulhan sated, tropped head (pfiat! pfiat!) waiting his first of the month froods turn for thatt chopp pah kabbakks alicubi on the old house for the chargehard, Roche Haddocks off Hawkins Street. Lowe, you blondy liar, Gob scene you in the narked place and she what's edith ar home defileth these boyles! There's a cabful of bash indeed in the homeur of that meal. Slander, let it lie its flattest, has never been able to convict our good and great and no ordinary Southron Earwicker, that homogenius man, as a pious author called him, of any graver impropriety than that, advanced by some woodwards or regarders, who did not dare deny, the shomers, that they had, chin Ted, chin Tam, chinchin Taffyd, that day consumed their soul of the corn, of having behaved with ongentilmensky immodus opposite a pair of dainty maidservants in the swoolth of the rushy hollow whither, or so the two gown and pinners pleaded, dame nature in all innocency had spontaneously and about the same hour of the eventide sent them both but whose published combinations of silkinlaine testimonies are, where not dubiously pure, visibly divergent, as wapt from wept, on minor points touching the intimate nature of this, a first offence in vert or venison which was admittedly an incautious but, at its wildest, a partial exposure with such attenuating circumstances (garthen gaddeth green hwere sokeman brideth girling) as an abnormal Saint Swithin's summer and, (Jesses Rosasharon!) a ripe occasion to provoke it.




The full published chapter (FW I.2) is here.


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