Vico Road

At the beginning of Nestor Stephen reflects that Armstrong's family lives on "Vico Road, Dalkey," which runs along the seacoast southwest from the prosperous suburb of Dalkey, approximately 10 miles southeast of central Dublin. According to Ellmann Joyce modeled Armstrong on a boy named Clifford Ferguson who did in fact live in Vico Terrace (153), and clearly the chief purpose of the detail is to indicate that the Armstrongs are "Welloff people." The land along the Dalkey Coast was prime real estate, as the caption to the Finerty photo here suggests. But it is hard to dismiss entirely the possibility that Joyce may have been alluding to the philosophy of Giambattista Vico, which plays an important role in Finnegans Wake.

John Hunt 2022

Vico Road today, from the southwest. At the upper right lies Dalkey Island and beyond it the Muglins. Around the bend to the left are Dalkey, Bullock Harbor, Sandycove, Dun Laoghaire (formerly Kingstown), and ultimately Dublin. Source:

View of Dalkey from the northeast. Source: John F. Finerty, Ireland in Pictures (1898).