Long considered the essential guide to Joyce's famously difficult work, Roland McHugh's Annotations to "Finnegans Wake" provides both novice readers and seasoned Joyceans with a wealth of information in an easy-to-use format uniquely suited to this densely layered text. Each page of the Annotations corresponds directly with a page of the standard Viking/Penguin edition of Finnegans Wake and contains line-by-line notes following the placement of the passages to which they refer. The reader can thus look directly from text to notes and back again, with no need to consult separate glossaries or other listings.
McHugh's richly detailed notes distill decades of scholarship, explicating foreign words, unusual English connotations and colloquial expressions, place names, historical events, song titles and quotations, parodies of other texts, and Joyce's diverse literary and popular sources. The third edition has added material reflecting fifteen years of research, including significant new insights from Joyce's compositional notebooks (the "Buffalo Notebooks"), now being edited for the first time.