The Dead

Julia Morkan (Aunt Julia) Character Analysis

Gabriel’s other aunt, who is also hosting the annual Christmas party along with Kate and Mary Jane. She works as the leading soprano in Adam and Eve’s, which is a popular Dublin name for the Church of the Immaculate Conception. According to the text she has “not aged well” and is described as having gray hair and a gray face, further emphasizing her age. She has trouble understanding Gabriel’s speech and is often confused. Towards the end of the text, Gabriel imagines her funeral, which he believes will happen soon in the very same house.
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Julia Morkan (Aunt Julia) Character Timeline in The Dead

The timeline below shows where the character Julia Morkan (Aunt Julia) appears in The Dead. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Section 1
Death Theme Icon
Women and Society Theme Icon
The story opens in the midst of Kate and Julia Morkan’s annual Christmas party, with the caretaker’s daughter Lily taking the male party guest’s coats,... (full context)
Jealousy and Male Pride Theme Icon
Death Theme Icon
Women and Society Theme Icon
Kate and Julia are starting to wonder where their nephew Gabriel is, as it is already after ten... (full context)
Jealousy and Male Pride Theme Icon
Death Theme Icon
Ireland, Anti-Nationalism, and the Foreign Theme Icon
Julia, Kate, and Gretta interrupt Gabriel’s thoughts as they exit the dressing room. Aunt Julia’s face... (full context)
Jealousy and Male Pride Theme Icon
Ireland, Anti-Nationalism, and the Foreign Theme Icon
Women and Society Theme Icon
Gabriel and Gretta’s conversation with Julia and Kate is interrupted by the arrival of Freddy Malins. Aunt Kate asks Gabriel to... (full context)
Section 2
Nostalgia and the Past vs. the Present Theme Icon
Death Theme Icon
Women and Society Theme Icon
...the balcony scene from Romeo and Juliet hanging next to a picture made by Aunt Julia of the two princes who were murdered in the Tower of London. This reminds Gabriel... (full context)
Jealousy and Male Pride Theme Icon
Women and Society Theme Icon
Aunt Julia enters the room and begins to sing “Arrayed for the Bridal.” Freddy seems particularly moved... (full context)
Nostalgia and the Past vs. the Present Theme Icon
Ireland, Anti-Nationalism, and the Foreign Theme Icon
...talented singers, but they are probably in London, Paris, or Milan. The pudding that Aunt Julia has prepared is served, and she remarks that it is “not quite brown enough.” Mr.... (full context)
Jealousy and Male Pride Theme Icon
Nostalgia and the Past vs. the Present Theme Icon
Death Theme Icon
Ireland, Anti-Nationalism, and the Foreign Theme Icon
Women and Society Theme Icon
...poured in preparation for Gabriel’s speech. In his speech he praises his aunts (calling Kate, Julia, and Mary Jane the “Three Graces”) and recognizes their hospitality, attributing it to an Irish... (full context)
Section 3
Jealousy and Male Pride Theme Icon
Nostalgia and the Past vs. the Present Theme Icon
Women and Society Theme Icon
...D’Arcy. He then abruptly stops singing and comes downstairs with Gretta and Miss O’Callaghan. Aunt Julia and Miss O’Callaghan remark that they both love how the snow looks, but Aunt Kate... (full context)
Jealousy and Male Pride Theme Icon
Nostalgia and the Past vs. the Present Theme Icon
Death Theme Icon
...soon he may be sitting in the same house where he was tonight, mourning Aunt Julia’s death. This rumination on death leads him to realize that he will die without ever... (full context)