James Joyce, Leo Taxil, blasphemy, Baphomet, Ulysses, Paris

Ep. 39 – C’est le pigeon, Joseph.

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La Vie de Jésus, by Léo Taxil

Stephen Dedalus learns the value of gentlemanly blasphemy in this episode of Blooms & Barnacles. Our hero evades the nets of his oppressors while recalling a conversation with a friend in Paris. Topics include the changing face of Ringsend, the Pigeonhouse, Stephen’s epiphanies and the Epiphany, Dermot speaking French, what Jules Michelet doesn’t know about women, absinthe, the elaborate blasphemies of Leo Taxil’s pornographic pope period, Baphomet, the freemasons, and the greatest trick ever played on the Catholic Church (that might be overstating it, but it’s a fun story).


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Chalked door on the Epiphany

On the Blog:

La Vie de Léo Taxil

Poetry in Ulysses: The Ballad of Joking Jesus

Social Media:


Subscribe to Blooms & Barnacles:

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Léo Taxil


The Pope’s Mistresses, by Leo Taxil

Media discussed in this episode:

Leo Taxil’s Confession

La Vie de Jésus (complete text)

Jack Chick tract on freemasonry

Catholic Encyclopedia “Imposters”

Transcendental Magic Its Doctrine and Ritual by Eliphas Levi

“The Sabbatic Goat” from Eliphas Levi’s book (linked above)
The Mysteries of Freemasonery, by Léo Taxil


An illustration from one of Taxil’s books depicting a freemason “ritual” involving the deity Baphomet.

Further Reading:

de Hoyos, A., & Morris, S.B. (2010). Is it true what they say about freemasonery? New York: M. Evans.  Retrieved from https://tinyurl.com/y43m54ml

Gifford, D., & Seidman, R. J. (1988). Ulysses annotated: Notes for James Joyce’s Ulysses. Berkeley: University of California Press. Retrieved from https://tinyurl.com/vy6j4tk 

Greer, J.M. (2006). Palladian Order. In The Element Encyclopedia of Secret Societies. New York: Harper Element.

Magalaner, M. (1956). Labyrinthine motif: James Joyce and Leo Taxil. Modern Fiction Studies, 2(4), 167-182. Retrieved from http://www.jstor.org/stable/26273108

Image source for chalked door

The Annunciation, Girolamo da Santacroce, c. 1540



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