Syphilis is not a character in Ulysses

JoyceWhen I was studying literature at the university I formulated several rules, some of which are reasonable, and a few that are probably just curious observations and not strong enough to be rules. The first was:

All great English literature was written by an Irish author.

You can provide all the exceptions you want but look carefully and you’ll see I’m not exaggerating too much. The second was:

All great English poets were either syphilitic, consumptive, or diddled their sisters.

This one is more anecdotal than factual but was quite obvious in the period of literature I was concentrating on (now I would add drug use but back then I was so innocent).

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