Rejecting the offer of some new pants, Stephen tells Mulligan, "I can't wear them if they are grey." He is rigidly upholding an outdated Victorian convention, no doubt because of the terrible guilt that he feels about his mother's death. And he is becoming Hamlet, in a symbolic costume display that will ally him with Bloom.

JH 2011

The 2003 Great Lakes Theater Festival production of Hamlet, with Kevin Brewer as Rosencrantz, Steve Tague as Hamlet, and Lynn Robert Berg as Guildenstern. Source: www.greatlakestheater.org.