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Crosscat (a difficult one)

Posted by Malone on June 05, 2004

I found it in j joyce`s ulysses (episode 13 nausicaa, page 475, Penguin edition 1992) it refers to a girl called Edy Boarman and all descriptions take place inside Gerty Macdowell's mind acting out as narrator through her inner monologue; given JJ's 'homeric approach' to compound names, I thought it may be

a) compound of 'cross + cat'
b) a sort of feline version of a 'mongrel' or
c) taken from the childhood oath I mentioned above.

I've looked in all dictionaries and could not find a single entry for 'crosscat' and in google there is only an entry for a flying centre.

Just to give you an idea of how she is protrayed here are some short sentences about Edy, a young female friend of Gerty:

1) and Father Conroy handed him his hat to put on and crosscat Edy asked wasn't she coming but Jacky Caffrey called out:

2)- Edy said none too amiably with an arch glance from her shortsighted eyes.

3)- (Edy) she was black out at daggers drawn with Gerty (the girl chums had of course their little tiffs from time to time like the rest of mortals)

4)- squinty Edy

5)- Edy Boardman prided herself that she was very
petite but she never had a foot like Gerty MacDowell, a five, and never would ash, oak or elm.

6)- and Edy, little spitfire, because she would betwentytwo in November.

7)- Edy got as cross as two sticks

8)- when Edy asked her was she heartbroken about her best boy throwing her over.

9)- O yes, it cut deep because Edy had her own quiet way of saying things like that she knew would wound like the confounded little cat she was

10)- Miss puny little Edy's countenance fell to no slight extent