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Adv. MS 73.1.23

Catalogue of Gaelic Manuscripts in the National Library of Scotland

© Ronald Black

Adv. MS 73.1.23


Further description: Mackinnon, p. 277 (box 2, no.1); Mackechnie, p.277; Leabhar na Feinne, pp.v, xv, 218.

12 ff. Folio and under. Collection of Ossianic poems by Rev. Alexander Pope (c.1706-82) of Reay. A letter written by Pope in 1763 and published in the Highland Society of Scotland's Report of the Committee of the Highland Society of Scotland, appointed to inquire into the nature and authenticity of the poems of Ossian (Edinburgh 1805), Appendix, p.52, indicates that this collecting activity took place about 1739. Ff. 1-7 are in Pope’s hand, and a note at f. 1v confirming his identity appears to be signed W.P., perhaps his son William. Ff. 8-11 are in hand of Rev. Alexander Sage (1753-1824) of Kildonan, as are numerous corrections passim and a reference at f. 5v. In possession of the Highland Society of Scotland by 1822 (Cf. Ingliston MS. A.iv.11, p.4). An improved transcript by Sage of three of the poems is printed in J. Kennedy (ed.), Reliquiae Celticae, texts, papers, and studies in Gaelic literature and philology left by the late Rev. Alexander Cameron, LL.D, 2 vols. (Inverness 1892-1894), vol.1, pp. 393-9. The present manuscript is printed almost complete in J. f. Campbell's Leabhar na Feinne (London 1872), pp. 218-24.


1r a (Mackechnie, fragment A). Shian sin sa Hullaich, 14 stt.

1r b5 O s’ cui liom Iomachd ochdnar, 8 stt.

1v Hanig hugin dhe bar Bivil, 20 stt.

2r (Mackechnie, fragment B). Glen shi sho ri er taobh, 22 qq.

3r (Mackechnie, fragment C). Noacht hagam er Fin fiorghlic, 16 stt. With descriptive note.

4r (Mackechnie, fragment D). Is kionol shin Hullach ard, 24 stt. With descriptive note.

5r (Mackechnie, fragment E). Last 4 qq. of “Mànus” (Cf. Leabhar na Feinne, p. 73), here entitled “N’ Delginach Mhoir”. Beg. Bho harla du mo ghrasin fein. With descriptive note. Two omitted quatrains written underneath.

6r Is kinol shin a Thulaich ard, 10 qq. With descriptive note.

7r (Mackechnie, fragment F). Inis ghuin Osein eile, 108 ll.

8r (Mackechnie, fragment G). La do dhfin e shelg ni Clauin, 23 qq. Cf. NLS Adv.MS.73.2.16, f. 139.

9r (Mackechnie, fragment H). Cha’n mharbh I ach an Fhian, 124 ll. “Am Muireartach” (acephalous).

11v Sermon beg. Mar sin be caira Feoil Pheacach.


Mackechnie, John. Catalogue of Gaelic manuscripts in selected libraries in Great Britain and Ireland. 2 vols (Boston 1973).

Mackinnon, Donald. A descriptive catalogue of Gaelic manuscripts in the Advocates Library, Edinburgh, and elsewhere in Scotland (Edinburgh 1912).