Annotations to James Joyce's Ulysses/Circe/456

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Ulysses, 1922.djvu


Gaudium magnum annuntio vobis. Habemus carnificem     (Latin) A great joy I announce to you. We have an executioner. This is a corruption of the opening lines of the traditional formula known as Habemus Papam which is uttered by the Senior Cardinal Deacon to announce the election of a new Pope: Annuntio vobis gaudium magnum: Habemus Papam! (I announce to you a great joy: We have a Pope!).[1] Gifford cites Habemus pontificem (We have a Pontiff) as the correct form, which is closer to Joyce's Habemus carnificem. This form is supported by a contemporary account of the election of Pope Pius X in 1903.[2]

Copula Felix     (Latin) Fertile Coupling.[3] Thornton sees this as an allusion to felix culpa (happy fall) in the Exultet, from which Stephen quoted earlier in the day; see 050.04-05.


  1. Gifford (1988) 474.
    Thornton (1968) 376.
  2. A Pilgrimage to See the Holy Father, Pope Pius X. New York and London: Underwood & Underwood. 1904. pp. 31–32. 
  3. Gifford (1988) 474.
    Thornton (1968) 376.
Annotations to James Joyce's Ulysses
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