MI+Lumiere+brothers+footage+dublin+late+1800s+YouTubeAs many literati will know, Bloomsday is the annual celebration of James Joyce’s Ulysses, and of Joyce himself in general, fixed on the same day, June 16th, that the events of the novel take place on in 1904. Now, thanks pioneering French cinematographers the Lumière Brothers, footage of Dublin dating back to 1897, showing O’Connell Street and St Stephen’s Green just a few years prior to the events of the book, has been put into a new work.

The footage has been incorporated into a 30-minute film, “Ireland – Birth of a Nation,” produced by filmmaker Gerard McCarthy “to mark the the centenary of the 1916 Rising in 2016.” According to the filmmaker, this is the oldest known film footage of Ireland. The first part of the film, dealing with “the background to the 1916 Rising dating from the late nineteenth century with the rise of cultural nationalism,” should be especially helpful for students of Joyce – including landmarks such as the Metropole Hotel (below). More clips can be seen here.

The first recorded Bloomsday dates back to 1924, just two years after the first appearance of the complete novel, so this is obviously now a tradition with some pedigree. And the cosplayers who dress up as characters from the book now have a fresh source of reference for their gear. More than worth a Guinness or five …



The TeleRead community values your civil and thoughtful comments. We use a cache, so expect a delay. Problems? E-mail newteleread@gmail.com.