Annotations to James Joyce's Ulysses/Nestor/027
027.05-10, 027.18 The cock crew... The fox burying his grandmother under a hollybush. This is a variation on a nonsense riddle cited by Patrick Weston Joyce in his 1910 book English as We Speak it in Ireland, p. 187:
- Though Solomon solved all the puzzles propounded to him by the Queen of Sheba, I think this would put him to the pin of his collar. I learned it in Limerick two generations ago; and I have got a Wexford version from Mr. MacCall. Observe the delightful inconsequence of riddle and answer.
- Riddle me, riddle me right:
- What did I see last night?
- The wind blew,
- The cock crew,
- The bells of heaven
- Struck eleven.
- 'Tis time for my poor sowl to go to heaven.
- Answer: the fox burying his mother under a holly tree.