Ormond bar

Most of the action of Sirens takes place in three communicating rooms: "the Ormond bar" where Mina Kennedy and Lydia Douce work and seven named male customers congregate, the "saloon" behind the bar where several of the men go to smoke, play the piano, and sing, and the "diningroom" next door where Bloom sups with Richie Goulding and keeps his eyes and ears on people in the bar. The setting is the ground floor of the Ormond Hotel at 8-9 Upper Ormond Quay, just north of the Liffey and west of Capel Street. No trace of these rooms remains today and no photographs survive from Joyce's time, so visualizing the scene requires careful reading of his text, along with some historical context.

JH 2020

Detail from the 1920 Bartholomew map of Dublin, showing the Lilffey quays from the Four Courts to Sackville (O'Connell) Street, with the location of the Ormond Hotel identified by a blue arrow. Source: Norman B. Leventhal Map and Education Center, Boston Public Library.

Floorplan of the Ormond Hotel's ground-floor premises with street numbers on Ormond Quay shown at the bottom, in a graphic rendering by Sophie Schumann included in Harald Beck's online note. Source: www.jjon.org.

Photograph from the early 1900s, held in the National Library of Ireland, showing the view from Wellington Quay across the Grattan Bridge to Upper Ormond Quay, where the Ormond Hotel sits several doors to the left of the two bell towers of the Presbyterian church. Source: twitter.com.