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The Lotus Eaters
Episode 5
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Synopsis by Gerry O'Flaherty

Sir John Rogerson's Quay
Bloom has come about a mile from his home to Sir John Rogerson's Quay. It is about ten o'clock and although it is not indicated in the text, Bloom goes by a roundabout way to Westland Row post office to collect a letter left poste restate under his assumed name, Henry Flower.

He is conducting a half-hearted affair by letter with Martha Clifford, which he knows will never come to anything. He meets C.P. M'Coy who annoys him by comparing their respective wives' singing abilities.

Mosque like baths Bloom passes
In a quiet street nearby Bloom reads Martha's letter in which she encloses a yellow flower. Bloom puts the flower in his waistcoat pocket and goes into All Hallows church where Mass is ending.

In Sweny's chemist shop he buys a cake of lemon soap and has a prescription for skin lotion made up for Molly. Outside, Bantam Lyons waylays him and asks to see his newspaper. Bloom offers it to him saying that he was going to throw it away, thus, innocently, giving a tip for a horse called Throwaway running in the Gold Cup at Ascot that day. Later, this will get him in to a lot of trouble. We leave Bloom as he makes his way towards the Turkish baths in Leinster Street.

Westland Row
Here the Homeric correspondence is to the land of the lotus-eaters, where Odysseus' men, when they eat the lotus, forget their responsibilities and want only to remain where they are and have to be forced back aboard their ship.


   Episode 5 The Lotus Eaters    Listen to the show >>

Henry Flower was a DMP officer who was tried for the murder of a Dublin chambermaid called Bridget Gannon in 1900. Her friend Margaret Clowry insisted that she saw the deceased with Officer Flower the night before her body was found in the Dodder River. Flower's arrest caused great controversy and was widely covered in the newspapers of the day.

The media distressed Flower's superior officer John Hannily so much that he cut his throat. Flower was acquitted and soon left Ireland for Australia. On her deathbed some years later, Margaret Clowry herself admitted to having killed her friend.