Long Day’s Journey into Night

by

Eugene O’Neill

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James Tyrone Character Analysis

James is the patriarch of the Tyrone family, a sixty-five-year-old man who seems younger because of the confident way he holds himself. A former matinee star, he has the posture of a well-known actor and the clear enunciation of a true thespian. He is also a high-functioning alcoholic who drinks in great excess without letting the effects show, though by the end of the play there is no hiding the toll that whiskey has taken on his alertness. This, it seems, has been a pattern throughout his entire life, as Mary—his wife—often talks about how much time he spends in barrooms. In fact, people have frequently had to bring him home because he’s been too drunk to find his own way. Despite his own addiction, though, James spends most of his energy focusing on Mary, hoping desperately that she won’t relapse and continue her morphine habit. As such, he’s sure to praise and compliment her at the beginning of the play, since she has recently returned from rehab and has thus far refrained from using drugs. Unfortunately, this doesn’t last, and James quickly grows despondent about his wife’s addiction. He adopts a fatalistic mindset about the entire matter, feeling as if he can do nothing to stop Mary from using morphine. As such, he sits back and listens to her blame him for all sorts of things, like the fact that he is constantly thinking of ways to save money even though he’s rich and his family members need assistance. Indeed, this is another part of James’s personality; despite his wealth, he’ll never forget what it was like to grow up in an impoverished Irish Catholic family, and so he hordes his money and makes unwise real estate investments because he thinks buying land is the only way to make sure he won’t end up in the “poorhouse.”

James Tyrone Quotes in Long Day’s Journey into Night

The Long Day’s Journey into Night quotes below are all either spoken by James Tyrone or refer to James Tyrone. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
Fatalism and Resignation Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Yale edition of Long Day’s Journey into Night published in 1987.
Act One Quotes

TYRONE
You’re a fine lunkhead! Haven’t you any sense? The one thing to avoid is saying anything that would get her more upset over Edmund.

JAMIE
Shrugging his shoulders.
All right. Have it your way. I think it’s the wrong idea to let Mama go on kidding herself. It will only make the shock worse when she has to face it. Anyway, you can see she’s deliberately fooling herself with that summer cold talk. She knows better.

Page Number: 29
Explanation and Analysis:

You’ve been the worst influence for him. He grew up admiring you as a hero! A fine example you set him! If you ever gave him advice except in the ways of rottenness, I’ve never heard of it! You made him old before his time, pumping him full of what you consider worldly wisdom, when he was too young to see that your mind was so poisoned by your own failure in life, you wanted to believe every man was a knave with his soul for sale, and every woman who wasn’t a whore was a fool!

Related Characters: James Tyrone (speaker), Edmund Tyrone, Jamie Tyrone
Page Number: 35
Explanation and Analysis:

Yes, this time you can see how strong and sure of herself she is. She’s a different woman entirely from the other times. She has control of her nerves—or she had until Edmund got sick. Now you can feel her growing tense and frightened underneath. I wish to God we could keep the truth from her, but we can’t if he has to be sent to a sanatorium. What makes it worse is her father died of consumption. She worshiped him and she’s never forgotten. Yes, it will be hard for her. But she can do it! She has the will power now! We must help her, Jamie, in every way we can!

Related Characters: James Tyrone (speaker), Mary Tyrone, Edmund Tyrone, Jamie Tyrone
Page Number: 37
Explanation and Analysis:

Still […] people like them stand for something. I mean they have decent, presentable homes they don’t have to be ashamed of. They have friends who entertain them and whom they entertain. They’re not cut off from everyone.

She turns back from the window.

Not that I want anything to do with them. I’ve always hated this town and everyone in it. You know that. I never wanted to live here in the first place, but your father liked it and insisted on building this house, and I’ve had to come here every summer.

Related Characters: Mary Tyrone (speaker), James Tyrone, Edmund Tyrone
Page Number: 44
Explanation and Analysis:

EDMUND
Anyway, you’ve got to be fair, Mama. It may have been all his fault in the beginning, but you know that later on, even if he’d wanted to, we couldn’t have had people here—
He flounders guiltily.
I mean, you wouldn’t have wanted them.

MARY
Wincing—her lips quivering pitifully.
Don’t. I can’t bear having you remind me.

EDMUND
Don’t take it that way! Please, Mama! I’m trying to help. Because it’s bad for you to forget. The right way is to remember. So you’ll always be on your guard. You know what’s happened before.
Miserably.
God, Mama, you know I hate to remind you. I’m doing it because it’s been so wonderful having you home the way you’ve been, and it would be terrible—

Related Characters: James Tyrone, Mary Tyrone, Edmund Tyrone
Page Number: 46
Explanation and Analysis:
Act Two, Scene One Quotes

Because he’s always sneering at someone else, always looking for the worst weakness in everyone.

Then with a strange, abrupt change to a detached, impersonal tone.

But I suppose life has made him like that, and he can’t help it. None of us can help the things life has done to us. They’re done before you realize it, and once they’re done they make you do other things until at last everything comes between you and what you’d like to be, and you’ve lost your true self forever.

Related Characters: Mary Tyrone (speaker), James Tyrone, Edmund Tyrone, Jamie Tyrone
Page Number: 63
Explanation and Analysis:

Oh, I’m so sick and tired of pretending this is a home! You won’t help me! You won’t put yourself out the least bit! You don’t know how to act in a home! You don’t really want one! You never have wanted one—never since the day we were married! You should have remained a bachelor and lived in second-rate hotels and entertained your friends in barrooms!

She adds strangely, as if she were now talking aloud to herself rather than to Tyrone.

Then nothing would ever have happened.

They stare at her. Tyrone knows now. He suddenly looks a tired, bitterly sad old man.

Related Characters: Mary Tyrone (speaker), James Tyrone, Edmund Tyrone, Jamie Tyrone
Page Number: 69
Explanation and Analysis:

You’re to blame, James. How could you let him? Do you want to kill him? Don’t you remember my father? He wouldn’t stop after he was stricken. He said doctors were fools! He thought, like you, that whiskey is a good tonic!

A look of terror comes into her eyes and she stammers.

But, of course, there’s no comparison at all. I don’t know why I—Forgive me for scolding you, James. One small drink won’t hurt Edmund. It might be good for him, if it gives him an appetite.

Related Characters: Mary Tyrone (speaker), James Tyrone, Edmund Tyrone, Jamie Tyrone
Page Number: 70
Explanation and Analysis:
Act Two, Scene Two Quotes

The family are returning from lunch as the curtain rises. Mary is the first to enter from the back par­lor. Her husband follows. He is not with her as he was in the similar entrance after breakfast at the opening of Act One. He avoids touching her or looking at her. There is condemnation in his face, mingled now with the beginning of an old weary, helpless resignation. Jamie and Edmund follow their father. Jamie’s face is hard with defensive cyni­cism. Edmund tries to copy this defense but without success. He plainly shows he is heartsick as well as physically ill.

Page Number: 73
Explanation and Analysis:

TYRONE
You ought to be kicked out in the gutter! But if I did it, you know damned well who’d weep and plead for you, and excuse you and complain till I let you come back.

JAMIE
A spasm of pain crosses his face.
Christ, don’t I know that? No pity? I have all the pity in the world for her. I understand what a hard game to beat she’s up against— which is more than you ever have! My lingo didn’t mean I had no feeling. I was merely putting bluntly what we all know, and have to live with now, again.

Bitterly.

The cures are no damned good except for a while. The truth is there is no cure and we’ve been saps to hope—

Cynically

They never come back!

Page Number: 78
Explanation and Analysis:

It was my fault. I should have insisted on staying with Eugene and not have let you persuade me to join you, just because I loved you. Above all, I shouldn’t have let you insist I have another baby to take Eugene’s place, because you thought that would make me forget his death. I knew from experience by then that children should have homes to be born in, if they are to be good children, and women need homes, if they are to be good mothers. I was afraid all the time I carried Edmund. I knew something terrible would happen. I knew I’d proved by the way I’d left Eugene that I wasn’t worthy to have another baby, and that God would punish me if I did. I never should have borne Edmund.

Related Characters: Mary Tyrone (speaker), James Tyrone, Edmund Tyrone, Eugene Tyrone
Page Number: 91
Explanation and Analysis:
Act Three Quotes

You’re a sentimental fool. What is so wonderful about that first meeting between a silly romantic schoolgirl and a matinee idol? You were much happier before you knew he existed, in the Convent when you used to pray to the Blessed Virgin.

Longingly.

If I could only find the faith I lost, so I could pray again!

She pauses—then begins to recite the Hail Mary in a flat, empty tone.

“Hail, Mary, full of grace! The Lord is with Thee; blessed art Thou among women.”

Sneeringly.

You expect the Blessed Virgin to be fooled by a lying dope fiend re­citing words! You can’t hide from her!

She springs to her feet. Her hands fly up to pat her hair distractedly.

I must go upstairs. I haven’t taken enough. When you start again you never know exactly how much you need.

Related Characters: Mary Tyrone (speaker), James Tyrone, Cathleen
Page Number: 99
Explanation and Analysis:

But I forgive. I always forgive you. So don’t look so guilty. I’m sorry I remembered out loud. I don’t want to be sad, or to make you sad. I want to remember only the happy part of the past.

Related Characters: Mary Tyrone (speaker), James Tyrone
Related Symbols: Mary’s Wedding Dress
Page Number: 116
Explanation and Analysis:
Act Four Quotes

Tyrone is seated at the table. He wears his pince-nez, and is playing solitaire. He has taken off his coat and has on an old brown dressing gown. The whiskey bottle on the tray is three-quarters empty. There is a fresh full bottle on the table, which he has brought from the cellar so there will be an ample reserve at hand. He is drunk and shows it by the owlish, deliberate manner in which he peers at each card to make cer­tain of its identity, and then plays it as if he wasn’t certain of his aim. His eyes have a misted, oily look and his mouth is slack. But despite all the whiskey in him, he has not escaped, and he looks as he appeared at the close of the preceding act, a sad, defeated old man, possessed by hopeless resignation.

Related Characters: James Tyrone
Page Number: 127
Explanation and Analysis:

The fog was where I wanted to be. Halfway down the path you can’t see this house. You’d never know it was here. Or any of the other places down the avenue. I couldn’t see but a few feet ahead. I didn’t meet a soul. Everything looked and sounded unreal. Noth­ing was what it is. That’s what I wanted—to be alone with myself in another world where truth is untrue and life can hide from itself. Out beyond the harbor, where the road runs along the beach, I even lost the feeling of being on land. The fog and the sea seemed part of each other. It was like walking on the bottom of the sea. As if I had drowned long ago. As if I was a ghost belonging to the fog, and the fog was the ghost of the sea. It felt damned peaceful to be nothing more than a ghost within a ghost.

He sees his father staring at him with mingled worry and irritated disapproval. He grins mockingly.

Don’t look at me as if I’d gone nutty. I’m talking sense. Who wants

to see life as it is, if they can help it?

Related Characters: Edmund Tyrone (speaker), James Tyrone, Mary Tyrone
Related Symbols: The Fog
Page Number: 133
Explanation and Analysis:

I lay on the bowsprit, facing astern, with the water foaming into spume under me, the masts with every sail white in the moonlight, tower­ing high above me. I became drunk with the beauty and singing rhythm of it, and for a moment I lost myself—actually lost my life. I was set free! I dissolved in the sea, became white sails and flying spray, became beauty and rhythm, became moonlight and the ship and the high dim-starred sky! I belonged, without past or future, within peace and unity and a wild joy, within something greater than my own life, or the life of Man, to Life itself! To God, if you want to put it that way. Then another time, on the American Line, when I was lookout on the crow’s nest in the dawn watch. A calm sea, that time. Only a lazy ground swell and a slow drowsy roll of the ship. The passengers asleep and none of the crew in sight. No sound of man. Black smoke pouring from the funnels behind and beneath me. Dreaming, not keeping lookout, feeling alone, and above, and apart, watching the dawn creep like a painted dream over the sky and sea which slept together. Then the moment of ecstatic freedom came. The peace, the end of the quest, the last harbor, the joy of be­longing to a fulfillment beyond men’s lousy, pitiful, greedy fears and hopes and dreams!

Related Characters: Edmund Tyrone (speaker), James Tyrone
Page Number: 156
Explanation and Analysis:

It was a great mistake, my being born a man, I would have been much more successful as a seagull or a fish. As it is, I will always be a stranger who never feels at home, who does not really want and is not really wanted, who can never belong, who must always be a little in love with death!

Related Characters: Edmund Tyrone (speaker), James Tyrone
Page Number: 157
Explanation and Analysis:

Did it on purpose to make a bum of you. Or part of me did. A big part. That part that’s been dead so long. That hates life. My putting you wise so you’d learn from my mistakes. Believed that myself at times, but it’s a fake. Made my mistakes look good. Made getting drunk romantic. Made whores fascinating vampires instead of poor, stupid, diseased slobs they really are. Made fun of work as sucker’s game. Never wanted you succeed and make me look even worse by comparison. Wanted you to fail. Always jealous of you. Mama’s baby, Papa’s pet!

He stares at Edmund with increasing enmity.

And it was your being born that started Mama on dope. I know that’s not your fault, but all the same, God damn you, I can’t help hating your guts — !

Related Characters: Jamie Tyrone (speaker), James Tyrone, Mary Tyrone, Edmund Tyrone
Page Number: 169
Explanation and Analysis:
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James Tyrone Character Timeline in Long Day’s Journey into Night

The timeline below shows where the character James Tyrone appears in Long Day’s Journey into Night. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Act One
Fatalism and Resignation Theme Icon
Denial, Blame, and Guilt Theme Icon
The Past, Nostalgia, and Regret Theme Icon
One morning in August of 1912, James and Mary Tyrone walk into the parlor of their summer home after breakfast. The house... (full context)
Fatalism and Resignation Theme Icon
Denial, Blame, and Guilt Theme Icon
Love and Forgiveness Theme Icon
Banishing the idea of his sons from his mind, James lights a cigar and talks about how wonderful it is to smoke after breakfast. “It... (full context)
Denial, Blame, and Guilt Theme Icon
Love and Forgiveness Theme Icon
The Past, Nostalgia, and Regret Theme Icon
The sound of coughing comes from the next room, and Mary tells James that he ought to be worried about the fact that Edmund isn’t eating enough. “He... (full context)
Denial, Blame, and Guilt Theme Icon
The Past, Nostalgia, and Regret Theme Icon
Defensively, Mary says she isn’t “upset,” and asks James what would make him think otherwise. “Why, nothing, except you’ve seemed a bit high-strung the... (full context)
Fatalism and Resignation Theme Icon
The Past, Nostalgia, and Regret Theme Icon
Mary tells James she’ll “keep up the good work,” then admits she does feel “out of sorts.” “I... (full context)
Denial, Blame, and Guilt Theme Icon
Again, Mary and James hear their sons laughing in the next room, and James grouchily assumes the joke is... (full context)
Denial, Blame, and Guilt Theme Icon
Love and Forgiveness Theme Icon
Edmund and Mary talk about the fact that James is a loud snorer, and Jamie agrees, saying, “The Moor, I know his trumpet.” Defensively,... (full context)
Denial, Blame, and Guilt Theme Icon
Love and Forgiveness Theme Icon
Uninterested in the family’s blossoming argument, Jamie says, “Let’s forget it,” but James immediately jumps down his throat, saying, “Yes, forget! Forget everything and face nothing! It’s a... (full context)
Denial, Blame, and Guilt Theme Icon
As Jamie laughs with the others at Edmund’s story, James turns on him and tells him to stop laughing, scolding him for being a lazy... (full context)
Denial, Blame, and Guilt Theme Icon
The Past, Nostalgia, and Regret Theme Icon
Pushing on, James says that Doctor Hardy thinks Edmund might have malarial fever from working in the tropics.... (full context)
Denial, Blame, and Guilt Theme Icon
“You’re a fine lunkhead!” James says to Jamie when Mary leaves. “The one thing to avoid is saying anything that... (full context)
Denial, Blame, and Guilt Theme Icon
...hear his brother might have consumption, Jamie says that this might never have happened if James had sent Edmund to a “real doctor when he first got sick.” Defensively, James asks... (full context)
Denial, Blame, and Guilt Theme Icon
When James starts to argue against Jamie’s accusations of his cheapness, Jamie tells him to stop, saying... (full context)
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Love and Forgiveness Theme Icon
The Past, Nostalgia, and Regret Theme Icon
Jamie tells James not to “drag up” “ancient history,” but James upholds that it’s not “ancient history” because... (full context)
Denial, Blame, and Guilt Theme Icon
Love and Forgiveness Theme Icon
After a moment, Jamie says, “That’s a rotten accusation, Papa. You know how much the Kid means to me.” Moved, James says, “I know you... (full context)
Denial, Blame, and Guilt Theme Icon
Love and Forgiveness Theme Icon
Wanting to say something nice about Edmund, James remarks that his son has been doing well working for the local newspaper, but Jamie... (full context)
Denial, Blame, and Guilt Theme Icon
The Past, Nostalgia, and Regret Theme Icon
Switching course, James says that it’s “damnable luck” that Edmund is sick “right now.” “It couldn’t have come... (full context)
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The Past, Nostalgia, and Regret Theme Icon
James points out that the situation with Edmund is made worse by the fact that Mary’s... (full context)
Denial, Blame, and Guilt Theme Icon
The Past, Nostalgia, and Regret Theme Icon
...sick she’s been up and down, going to his room to see how he was,” James says, to which Jamie replies, “It was her being in the spare room that scared... (full context)
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Love and Forgiveness Theme Icon
The Past, Nostalgia, and Regret Theme Icon
Despite his outbreak, James considers the story Jamie has just told him, saying, “It would be like a curse... (full context)
Denial, Blame, and Guilt Theme Icon
...his way out, Jamie apologizes for telling Mary to be careful, and then he and James exit. Once alone, Mary sits in a chair, “her face betraying a frightened, furtive desperation.”... (full context)
Denial, Blame, and Guilt Theme Icon
Love and Forgiveness Theme Icon
The Past, Nostalgia, and Regret Theme Icon
...don’t have a presentable home. In response, Edmund says it’s unfair to blame everything on James, since even if he had wanted to change things, he would have had a hard... (full context)
Denial, Blame, and Guilt Theme Icon
The Past, Nostalgia, and Regret Theme Icon
Edmund tells Mary that he, Jamie, and James do trust her, but that they worry about her. Still, she laments the fact that... (full context)
Act Two, Scene One
Denial, Blame, and Guilt Theme Icon
...housekeepers, enters with a bottle of whiskey. After Edmund tells her to fetch Jamie and James for lunch, she guesses aloud that he’ll sneak a drink before they arrive. “Now you... (full context)
Denial, Blame, and Guilt Theme Icon
...he did in fact have a drink. Moving toward the bottle himself, Jamie says that James is outside talking to Captain Turner, and when he’s finished stealing some whiskey for himself,... (full context)
Denial, Blame, and Guilt Theme Icon
...her alone so long? Why didn’t you stick around?” “Because she accused me—and you and Papa—of spying on her all the time and not trusting her,” Edmund answers. “She made me... (full context)
Fatalism and Resignation Theme Icon
Denial, Blame, and Guilt Theme Icon
The Past, Nostalgia, and Regret Theme Icon
...you have. You never knew what was really wrong until you were in prep school. Papa and I kept it from you. But I was wise ten years or more before... (full context)
Denial, Blame, and Guilt Theme Icon
...she says. “If you want to think so, Mama,” he replies. Mary then asks where James is, and Edmund tells her he’s wasting his time talking to Captain Turner.  (full context)
Fatalism and Resignation Theme Icon
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Jamie makes a joke at his father’s expense, and Mary chastises him for not respecting James enough. “Stop sneering at your father! I won’t have it! You ought to be proud... (full context)
Denial, Blame, and Guilt Theme Icon
Loneliness, Isolation, and Belonging Theme Icon
As Edmund, Jamie, and Mary wait for James, they grow impatient. Mary, for her part, goes on a rant about the fact that... (full context)
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Edmund gets up and goes to summon James. Meanwhile, Jamie stares resentfully at Mary, who asks him why he’s looking at her so... (full context)
Denial, Blame, and Guilt Theme Icon
...riddles like Jamie.” Then, when she looks up at him, she says, “Edmund! Don’t!” As James walks up the steps outside, Edmund slumps dejectedly in a chair. Still, though, he refuses... (full context)
Fatalism and Resignation Theme Icon
Denial, Blame, and Guilt Theme Icon
Entering, James apologizes for being late, claiming that Captain Turner wouldn’t stop talking. Without turning, Jamie can... (full context)
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Loneliness, Isolation, and Belonging Theme Icon
The Past, Nostalgia, and Regret Theme Icon
The three Tyrone men drink their sizable glasses of whiskey. Sensing tension in the room, James looks around and asks what’s wrong. “Why are you wearing that gloomy look on your... (full context)
Denial, Blame, and Guilt Theme Icon
The Past, Nostalgia, and Regret Theme Icon
Seeing Edmund’s empty glass, Mary tells her son he shouldn’t be drinking. She then blames James for letting their son have alcohol. “How could you let him?” she asks. “Do you... (full context)
Denial, Blame, and Guilt Theme Icon
...would think you were accusing me—.” Cutting herself off, she says in a “pleading” tone, “James! You don’t understand.” James responds that he’s been foolish to believe her in. “I don’t... (full context)
Fatalism and Resignation Theme Icon
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James! I tried so hard! I tried so hard!” Mary says. “I suppose you did,” he... (full context)
Act Two, Scene Two
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Love and Forgiveness Theme Icon
The Past, Nostalgia, and Regret Theme Icon
...saying that this summer home isn’t really a home. “No, it never can be now,” James says. “But it was once, before you—” Mary interrupts, “Before I what?” Then there is... (full context)
Fatalism and Resignation Theme Icon
Denial, Blame, and Guilt Theme Icon
Loneliness, Isolation, and Belonging Theme Icon
...he sullenly promises he’ll eat more in the future. Just then, the phone rings, and James steps into the hall to answer it, lying by saying he’s expecting a call from... (full context)
Denial, Blame, and Guilt Theme Icon
The Past, Nostalgia, and Regret Theme Icon
...say she doesn’t trust Doctor Hardy because he’s so cheap, suggesting that the only reason James likes him is because he’s inexpensive. “He understands nothing!” she says. “And yet it was... (full context)
Fatalism and Resignation Theme Icon
The Past, Nostalgia, and Regret Theme Icon
...himself, pointing out that the young man loves morbid poetry and philosophy. At this point, James interrupts and says that both their lifestyles pale in comparison to religious devotion, though he... (full context)
Denial, Blame, and Guilt Theme Icon
...consumption, Jamie is distraught, realizing that his brother will have to go to a sanatorium. James agrees, saying that Hardy told him Edmund will be cured in six months to a... (full context)
Fatalism and Resignation Theme Icon
After their conversation about the sanatorium, Jamie and James decide that Jamie ought to accompany Edmund to Hardy’s, though James warns him against using... (full context)
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When James starts to leave for his “appointment at the Club,” Mary tries to stop him, saying... (full context)
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Mary tells James that she doesn’t like driving around in the car, making it clear that his attempt... (full context)
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In another reversal, Mary suddenly says, “James! We’ve loved each other! We always will! Let’s remember only that, and not try to... (full context)
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“Leave it to you to have some of the stuff hidden, and prescriptions for more!” James says to Mary. “I hope you’ll lay in a good stock ahead so we’ll never... (full context)
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“I was so healthy before Edmund was born,” Mary continues. “You remember, James. There wasn’t a nerve in my body. Even traveling with you season after season, with... (full context)
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Still reminiscing about the past, Mary thinks about her and James’s second son, Eugene, who died as a baby. “I swore after Eugene died I would... (full context)
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...Doctor Hardy’s, mentioning that he doesn’t have money for carfare. Feeling sorry for the boy, James reaches into his pocket and gives him ten dollars—much more than he ever lends his... (full context)
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Before Edmund leaves, Mary tells him not to give any of the money James lent him to Jamie, who will spend it on alcohol. She then asks him to... (full context)
Act Three
Denial, Blame, and Guilt Theme Icon
Loneliness, Isolation, and Belonging Theme Icon
The Past, Nostalgia, and Regret Theme Icon
...upholds that she might have gone to Europe to study music if she hadn’t met James. “Or I might have become a nun,” she adds. (full context)
Love and Forgiveness Theme Icon
The Past, Nostalgia, and Regret Theme Icon
Mary tells Cathleen a story about the first time she met James. At the time, he was a well-known actor. Apparently, Mary’s father became friends with him... (full context)
Fatalism and Resignation Theme Icon
Love and Forgiveness Theme Icon
The Past, Nostalgia, and Regret Theme Icon
...Just then, she decides she must go upstairs and take more morphine, but she hears James and Edmund returning before she can slip away. (full context)
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Love and Forgiveness Theme Icon
As Edmund and James enter, Mary gives them a warm welcome, urging her husband to have some whiskey and... (full context)
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Ignoring James and Edmund, Mary talks about how Jamie has grown up to “disgrace” the family. At... (full context)
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“Do you know what I was telling [Cathleen], dear?” Mary asks James. “About the night my father took me to your dressing room and I first fell... (full context)
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When James is gone, Mary tells Edmund about his past, saying he’s stingy because of the way... (full context)
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Before Mary can go upstairs to take more morphine, James returns with a new bottle of whiskey, and she tells him that Edmund most likely... (full context)
Act Four
Denial, Blame, and Guilt Theme Icon
Love and Forgiveness Theme Icon
It is midnight, and James is sitting alone at the table playing solitaire against himself. The bottle of whiskey sits... (full context)
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Feeling sorry, James gets up and turns all the lights on, saying, “To hell with them! The poorhouse... (full context)
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Edmund tells James that he stopped at the Inn on his way back, and when his father says... (full context)
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...help it?” In response, his father tells him he is poetic but “morbid.” Going on, James says he shouldn’t have given Edmund a drink. “Well, what’s wrong with being drunk?” Edmund... (full context)
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...probably what Jamie is reciting now as he himself sleeps with a prostitute. And though James finds some of these poems humorous, he can’t get over the fact that they’re all... (full context)
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James points out that part of the reason Mary relapsed has to do with how worried... (full context)
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Truly hurt, James pleads with Edmund to stop repeating his mother’s “crazy accusations.” Then, turning angry, he says,... (full context)
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James tells Edmund about his own upbringing, saying that he had to take over as the... (full context)
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...much, and the time came when that mistake ruined my career as a fine actor,” James says. Going on, he says he’s never told anyone this, but he believes the play... (full context)
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Looking up, James says that the lights he turned on are hurting his eyes, and so he asks... (full context)
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Edmund and James hear Mary moving around again upstairs, and Edmund says, “Yes, she moves above and beyond... (full context)
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Edmund and his father hear Jamie stumbling onto the porch. Wanting to avoid unnecessary arguments, James decides to step out as his son comes into the parlor. “Oh, hello, Kid,” Jamie... (full context)
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...long, though, he drunkenly says that he wants to “warn” Edmund about himself. “Mama and Papa are right,” he says. “I’ve been a rotten bad influence. And worst of it is,... (full context)
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After Jamie makes this confession, he dozes off, at which point James sneaks back inside and pours a drink. Hearing his father’s voice, Jamie snaps awake and... (full context)
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...notice.” “The Mad Scene,” Jamie says in a scathing tone. “Enter Ophelia!” Both Edmund and James whirl to face him—horrified—and Edmund slaps him across the face. “All right, Kid,” he replies.... (full context)
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...I’m always dreaming and forgetting.” Seeing that his wife is getting her wedding gown dirty, James jumps up and says, “Christ! Mary! Isn’t it bad enough—? Here, let me take it,... (full context)
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“It’s a wedding gown,” Mary explains as James takes the dress from her. “But I don’t know what I wanted it for. I’m... (full context)
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...periodically recites poetry, which his father finds morbid. “Oh, we’re fools to pay any attention,” James says. “It’s the damned poison. But I’ve never known her to drown herself in it... (full context)
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...in the spring something happened to me. Yes, I remember. I fell in love with James Tyrone and was so happy for a time.” As Mary stares out into “a sad... (full context)