Finnegans Wake


soort - sort


overstep - to step over

kraal - an enclosure for cattle or sheep

slit - a straight and narrow cut or incision

marrowbone* - a bone containing edible marrow

p'raps - perahaps

pillory - a contrivance for the punishment of offenders, consisting usually of a wooden framework erected on a post or pillar, and formed, like the stocks, of two movable boards which, when brought together at their edges, leave holes through which the head and hands of an offender were thrust, in which state he was exposed to public ridicule, insult, and molestation.                                                                                                                  glory

Hercules' pillars* - the rocks Calpé (now Gibraltar) and Abyla (Ceuta), on either side of the Strait of Gibraltar, thought by the ancients to be the supports of the western boundary of the world, and to have been set up by Hercules.

hosiery* - hose collectively; extended to other frame-knitted articles of apparel, and hence to the whole class of goods in which a hosier deals.

blown - swollen, distended; spoiled, tainted; tired, exhausted.

sewer - one who sews.

scuse - excuse

charley* - a fool, simpleton

Dansk* = Danish - the language of Denmark

Norwegian* - the language of Norway.

spiggoty - Spanish-American, a foreign language;                                                     speak


Saxo = Saxon - the language of the Saxons

Jute - one of the three Low German tribes which, according to the account preserved by Bæda, invaded and settled in Britain in the fifth and sixth centuries.

swop = swap - to exchange, make an exchange                                                 shake hands


strong language* - expressions indicative of violent or excited feeling.

haphazard* - dependent upon chance or accident; random;        yap - a chat.

creek - an inlet or short arm of a river

mutt - a stupid or commonplace person; a mongrel dog, cur                                            me

my pleasure - a colloq. dismissal of thanks

jeff - a derogatory term for a man                                                                                 deaf

somehow* - someway, in some manner

deafmute* - deaf and dumb

nohow* - not at all

utterer - one that utters;              stutterer - one who stutters.

whoa - a word of command to a horse or other draught-animal to stop or stand still           how

stun - the condition of being stunned.

stummer - to stumble;         stammer - to stutter.

buttle - to serve as a butler                                                                                          battle

surd - irrational; voiceless                                                                                                sir

poddle - to walk with short or uncertain steps, to toddle.

wherein - in what, where


inedible - not edible                                                                                              inaudible


Brian Boru

usurp - to seize and hold by force or without right

trample* - to tread heavily and (esp.) injuriously upon; to crush                             tremble

rath - circular earthwork stronghold of an ancient irish chief                                     wrath

rim - edge                                                                                                              remember

business is business

fore - before

hesitancy* - the quality or condition of hesitating, indecision, vacillation.

cross someone's palm with silver* - to give money to someone (esp. for some information);
qualm - a spasm of fear.

trinket* - a small drinking vessel; a cup;      trinken (d) - to drink.

gilt - gilt plate, the thin layer of gold with which anything is gilt; gold, money.

sylvan - rel. to wood or woods                                                                                   silver

coyne - an irish chieftain's exaction of food and drink from his tenants for his soldiers;
cone - the more or less conical fruit of pines and firs                                                        coin

Guinness* - the proprietary name of a stout manufactured by the firm of Guinness            this

hie - to hasten, speed, go quickly.                                                                                      is

Celtic;        ...Sitric Silkenbeard led the Danes to an ignominous defeat at the battle of Clontarf in 1014.

shag - a mass of matted hair

mealy - resembling meal, having the qualities of meal, powdery.

faulty - defective, imperfect, unsound

dabble* - to wet by splashing, to play about in shallow water                                  Dublin

grilse* - the name given to a young salmon on its first return to the river from the sea.

poach - to cook (fish, fruit, etc.) by simmering in water or another liquid.