Catalogue of Gaelic Manuscripts in the National Library of Scotland

© Ronald Black, 2011

Adv. MS 72.1.47


Mackinnon, 96-8; Mackechnie, 203

?15th-17th cent. Vellum. 4 ff. Ff.1/4, 24 x 17 cms.; ff.2 and 3 smaller. Originally 3 separate fragments, each by a different scribe. Ff.1/4, a bifolium, are the outer leaves of a copy of An Tenga Bithnua, and the outsides (ff.1r and 4v) are rubbed and stained to the point of illegibility. Ff.2 and 3 were each single leaves. F.2 was once folded across the middle. All leaves worm-eaten. Date and provenance unknown, except perhaps for f.2 (text: Ulster, 15th cent.). That these fragments belonged latterly to the H.S.S. is evidenced by initials on ff.1, 3 and 4. How and when obtained cannot be known. Initials and inventory nos. are as follows. F.1r: “No 11” (pencil, ? hand of Lewis Gordon, Depute Secy. of H.S.S.), “15” “JMcH” (James McHardy, cf. Adv.MS.72.1.43 supra), “N. 4” (scored out), “10” (erased). F.3r: “16 JMcH” (refers to McHardy’s inventory of the MSS. left by Ewen MacLachlan, in which it is described as “A Single Leaf of Vellum Manuscript marked I”. McHardy’s “I” is in fact a scribal N read sideways!) F.4v: “No 11” (pencil, ? Lewis Gordon’s hand), “No. 10”, “M. McK” (Rev. Mackintosh Mackay, cf. Adv.MS.72.1.41 supra). The fragments must have been deposited in the Adv. Lib. in 1850 along with the rest of the H.S.S. MSS., but do not figure in Skene’s scroll cat. of 1861. Mackinnon brought or found them together and allotted them the no.XLVII, which he had left redundant by transferring the former MS.XLVII to the place of MS.XLI, the lost medical quarto described by MacLachlan (Adv.MS.72.3.4, p.121), now TCD 1698. In his Cat. (1912) he wrongly states the fragments to be no.11 of John Mackenzie’s H.S.L. MSS. In 1914 the leaves were bound, ff.2 and 3 being sewn together to form the inside layer (both, unfortunately, reversed). Perished portions of f.3 were stitched up. Pencilled foliation.


1 r AN TENGA BITHNUA. Beg. and end only. Beg. In principio creavit Deus celum et terram .i. do rinne Dia nemh et talamh. 1v endsata colann gach duine ‘na ceithri = ed. Dottin, Rev. Celt. 28, p.282, §3.5. 4r beg. An dechmad la immorro murfaid 7 isleochaid an talamh = ibid., p.304, §21.18. 4v, conclusion illegible.

2 (Fol. reversed.) In praise of Ruaighri and Art, fl.1400-22 (FM), ss. of Cú Uladh Ruadh, s. of Niall Mór Ó Néill. (a) 2v, Aceph. poem on Ruaighrí, beg. (acc. to saighin) Budh ainm ríg Ruaigri O Nell, 35 qq. 1st line of extant text is missing owing to perished corner of leaf. 2 qq. erased. There is illegible matter on upper and lower margg. of f.2v. (b) 2r25, Cu orrlamh cuilen Chon Uladh, seven qq. On Art. Followed ( marg. inf.) by line of large but illegible lettering.

3 (Fol. reversed.) CATH MÓR MUIGHE NA TEASAILLE. Fragment beg. 3v [coi]lgdhireach re tuluib 7 re bilibh 7 re borduib na [scia]th sgeallbolgac = ed. Stokes, Irische Texte IV part 2, In Cath Catharda p.432.1. Ends 3r ro sailseam rigi 7 flaitheamhnus d’fagbail do fein 7 da mhuinntir = ibid., 1. 5999. 3r marg. inf. (different hand) “lochta peinn ann so . da ní damh fa bennuibh bó . dar sa lo…”

© Ronald Black, 2011