Catalogue of Gaelic Manuscripts in the National Library of Scotland

© Ronald Black, 2011

Adv. MS 72.1.25


Mackinnon, pp.55, 85; Mackechnie, p.164.

15–16th cent. Vellum. 24 ff. Quarto. Originally two manuscripts or parts of manuscripts, one mainly medical and one mainly religious, now bound together with thongs. The mainly medical part (two bifolia, ff.1–2, 23–4), 19 x 16 cms., serves as a cover, and is written mainly in double columns. The mainly religious part (ff.3–22), 19 x 15 cms. and under, is made up from portions of vellum very unequal in size and shape. There is considerable variation in height from 8 cms. (ff.4, 5, 10 and 21, of which only the last was reduced after writing) to the full 19 cms. All are 13–15 cms. wide except f.7, which is a vertical strip of 17.5 x 7 cms. Ff.6–22 form a gathering made up as follows. Preceding middle: ff.6–8, excised leaf, 9–14. Following middle: ff.15, 16, 18, 19, 17, 20–2, two excised leaves. Ff.3–5 are separate leaves now without conjuncts; ff.3–4 appear to be the remains of the previous gathering. The text as it stands is continuous. Gashes in the vellum are stitched in red and green thread. Written in single columns.


1. Text, ff.1–2, 23–4. Formal, often unusually large for a medical hand; bold, strongly seriffed.

2. Relieves hand 1 at intervals, ff.1–2, 23; distinguishable by its crooked “s”.

3. Text, f.24r.b1 – end. Small.

4. Text, ff.3–22. Ovoid “d”. Changes style (notably “g”) and ink at f.18; a face is amusingly drawn in the initial “D” here, almost the only decoration in the manuscript.

5. Ff.2v, ?24r.

6. Ff.1v, 2v. Crude.

7. F.5r (“amen”).

Kilbride no.16 by Major MacLachlan’s enumeration (“16 Religious ----- Cover Medical”, f.1r, U.V.); no.21 by Hugh Kerr’s. The latter’s name or initials appear on nearly every leaf. Condition average; there is the usual smoking, staining and rubbing, but the only real textual losses are at the cut-down f.21 and the exposed outsides, which are totally illegible. Foliation modern.


1 r Illegible.

1 v.a1 On DIETS. Beg. acephalous somilis no ni eili ineoch maethas na lenna. First complete section begins De auria pasione .i. d’oilemnaib galair na cluas. Breaks off 2v.b z “gen gu teagaid sin a ceadoir tegaid an airrdeana” in section beg. Dieta cairdicorum. Resumes 23r.a1 olta in da mogaib .i. na meadg 7 na im; first complete section begins De periplemonicorum dieta. Ends 24r.a22: “Calmaigidh a neart 7 iseadh aderaid na fisighidha gu faidiguid saeghal in duine acht minetair bas dorinne. Finit. Amen.” Hippocrates cited. Marginalia: “Meamraigh gach rann ina lbr bain min macam dan . . .” (1v, hand 6); “An biadh dhul sa ghaile og ni holc sin oir ata se slan ara chionn maille to..... Ni misi me fein och a Dhe mo chor an bfuar tu an peleir a Dhomhnaill Oig mhic Briain” (U.V., 2v, hand 5); “Ansocoir do denamh duit 7 na caith biadh go imarchach gon codail dona. . . . .” (2v, hand 6); “Leabhar ana bhuil d. . . . . . ar l(eigheas) . . . .” (24r, hand ?5).

3 r1 PASSION OF CHRIST as revealed by B.V.M. to St. Anselm. Beg. acephalous tre ainndlige 7 tre duanmarbadh do leigin amach 7 ni dubairt Piloid ann sin fos Isa do mhilleadh 7 d’eirgidar na h-iubail ann sin co foluaimneach, cf. Celtica 7, p.171. Ends 8v2 “curab i sin sdair fiarfaid San Selm do Muire ar an pais conuigi sin. Finit. Amen. Seaan O Concubair do cuir an Gaedhilg hi 7 tabrad gach aen legfas bennacht ar anm.” See Adv.MS.72.1.1, f.4v.a1.

8 v4 Homily on the COMMANDMENTS. Beg.Leghthar andsa naemadh caibidil .xx. do leabur Matha co tainig duine og d’innsaighi an tigearna neamda da fiarfuide de cinnus do gebadh se an flaithemhnus nemdha. Cf. Atkinson, Passions and Homilies from Leabhar Breac, p.245.

18 r1 Giolla Brighde Mac Con Midhe. Deasgaid gach uilc in t-uabar, 39 qq.

19 v1 Idem. La braith in coimdi in cedain, 42 qq. F.20v, margin: “fromadh peinn” (hand 4).

21 r1 Muirn Magn(us)a, 24 lines. Imperfect, the upper part of the leaf having been irregularly torn off. First of a series of poems in various metres in praise of Maghnus Ó Conchubhair (? king of Connacht, d.1293: see O’Grady, Cat., p.487). Each except the last (22v9) ends with a formal dúnadh.

21 r7 Mian Magnusa a moladh, 10 lines.

21 r10 Mac righ ri ar sluagh, 8 lines.

21 v1 Poem almost entirely lost due to mutilation of leaf. Ends “o marcsluagh i mhagh”. Dúnadh is Magnus.

21 v4 Fear Cruachna os cách, 46 lines.

22 r1 Tren me ar Magnus, 46 lines.

22 r11 Teamair teach Magnuis, 44 lines.

22 v1 Magnus mallroscach, 28 lines.

22 v9 Magnus mac Concubair, 40 lines. Incomplete?

23 r.a1 See 1v.a1.

24 r.b1 Gleic . . . . . . . Dia is don eg, 21 qq. Ascription illegible (?” . . . . . . . . . ain .cc.”). Qq. 16–21 extend across page.

24 r i Gofraidh Ó Cluma. Fada go tuighim mo teach, 5 qq. Cf. McKenna, Aithdioghluim Dána 1, p.231. Incomplete, f.24v being illegible.

© Ronald Black, 2011