In Calypso, trying to close the front door of his house most of the way but not so far as to engage the lock, Bloom eases it toward him "till the footleaf dropped gently over the threshold, a limp lid," and he feels satisfied with the appearance: "Looked shut." Clearly, something at the foot of his door is covering the threshold, making it appear closed. But what exactly is a "footleaf"? The answer: a hinged wooden "leaf" at the foot of the door.

John Hunt 2021

Photograph of the door at 7 Eccles shortly before its removal, when the house was in sad shape. Source: David J. Wilson.

Closer view of the foot of the door. Source: David J. Wilson.

Weather flap on the bottom of the 7 Eccles Street door held in the James Joyce Centre, Dublin. Source: John Hunt.

One of the two hinges securing the flap. Source: John Hunt.