Ireland Flubs James Joyce Coin

But decides to release it anyway

By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff

Posted Apr 12, 2013 9:10 AM CDT

(Newser) – The Central Bank of Ireland has decided not to sweat the misquote marring its commemorative James Joyce coin. The bank has released the coin, wart and all, the Irish Times reports. The 10-euro coin features two sentences from the third chapter of Ulysses streaming from Joyce's head. The actual passage reads:

  • Ineluctable modality of the visible: at least that if no more, thought through my eyes. Signatures of all things I am here to read.
But on the coin it reads:
  • Ineluctable modality of the visible: at least that if no more, thought through my eyes. Signatures of all things that I am here to read.

Spot the difference? Yeah, neither did the bank; there's an extra "that" in the second sentence of the coin text. The bank says the limited-edition coin "is an artistic representation of the author and text and not intended as a literal representation," but it's nonetheless sending a message with each coin noting the misquote. "One would expect accuracy on an item like this," one Joyce scholar says. "I don't think it's a trivial thing." (The flub reminds NPR of this controversy a little closer to home.)

An official image of the coin.
An official image of the coin.   (Central Bank of Ireland)
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