In the cab, he continues to look at his wife with great feeling.When they cross O' Donnell bridge, Miss O' Callaghan repeats the saying that one can never cross the bridge without seeing a white horse.Folks at the table talk about the current opera company at the Theatre Royal. Bartell D' Arcy, a tenor, is among those discussing the current singers.
He begins to tell a skillfully exaggerated version of the tale to Mr. One day Gabriel's grandfather was in the center of Dublin, with his carriage hitched up to Old Johnny, and the old horse kept circling the statue of King William II. She seems to be the symbol of something, but he cannot tell what. Bartell D' Arcy and a young woman named Miss O' Callaghan, saying their goodbyes to Mary Jane and Aunt Julia and Aunt Kate.
The story is interrupted by Freddy Malins coming back in from the cold, announcing he only found one cab. As they walk to a place where they can find a cab, Gabriel looks at his wife, who is walking up ahead of him with Mr. Gabriel remembers their many happy times together, and tender feelings flood through him.
Gabriel also tries to convince her, but she insists that she must go.
She departs in good spirits, though Gabriel cannot help but wonder if she has left because he was so unpleasant.
Gabriel says that instead he sees a white man, referring to a statue covered in snow. The electric lights are not working, so the porter leads them by candlelight.
At the hotel, Gabriel pays the whole fare and sees off Miss O' Callaghan and Mr. Gabriel says to take the candle away with him; they have enough light from the windows.
Aunts Julia and Kate approach him, and dote on him. Tonight, after the party, he and his wife Gretta will stay at a hotel rather than take a cab all the way home. She tells him he has his own language to keep up with: Irish (Gaelic, but called Irish by the Irish to emphasize its rightful place as the national tongue). Miss Ivors continues with her difficult questions, irritating him.
Later, Gabriel has trouble listening to Mary Jane's rather professional-sounding piece.
Summary: Miss Kate Morkan and Miss Julian Morkan, spinster sisters, are throwing their annual Misses Morkan's dance. Lily, the caretaker's daughter, struggles to keep up with her many tasks, which include looking after the arriving guests. He goes with the three young ladies into the back room for some drinks. He thinks about his mother, the only sister who'd had no musical talent.
The dance is always huge: family, former music pupils, and the members of Julia's choir fill the house with gaiety and laughter. As Lily helps Gabriel with his things, he notices her slim body and pretty looks. Everyone compliments Miss Daly and the waltz she played. He remembers how his mother opposed his marriage to Gretta; but later, when his mother was dying, Gretta was the one who tended to her.