Catalogue of Irish Manuscripts in Royal Irish Academy

C i 3

Grammatical, etc.

16th cent.? (and 18th cent.). The ms. is divided into five sections, distinguished in this catalogue by the letters A, B, C, D and E. Sections A-C are vellum, D and E are paper. A (first leaf 8 1/8 x 11 3/4: other leaves c. 6 3/4 x 9 1/16) contains 1 + 4 leaves (paged 1-10 in pencil by the present cataloguer), followed by 6 blank paper dividing leaves. B (c. 8 9/16 x 11 3/16) contains 14 leaves (paged 1-29, the number 13 being omitted in the pagination), followed by 6 blank paper dividing leaves. C (c. 8 9/16 x 11 5/8) 6 leaves (paged 42-45, 66-73), followed immediately by a small paper ms., D (paper: 4 1/4 x 7 1/4) 22 pages (numbered in pencil by the present cataloguer), followed by 8 blank paper dividing leaves. E (paper : 8 x 5 1/8) 112 pages (numbered in pencil by the present cataloguer), followed by 8 blank paper dividing leaves separating them from the back cover. Five scribal hands may be distinguished: Hand 1, A, pp. 1-2 (Gothic: earlier than 1627 : cf. extraneous date on p. 2). Hand 2, A, pp. 3-10 (Gaelic : 16th cent.?), Hand 3, all of B and C (Gaelic: 16th cent.?). Hand 4, all of D (Gaelic : 18th cent.), identified as the hand of “Muiris Ó Gormáin” in a note in the handwriting of Charles O'Conor of Belanagare on p. 1 of the section [cf. also supra 746, description of Hand 0]. Hand 5, all of E (mainly English lettering : some lines in Gaelic lettering : a number of Gaelic contraction-marks : late 18th cent.?). Hands other than those of the main scribes have added glosses or notes as follows: (i) 17th cent. hands (?) : in A as mentioned in the catalogue entries infra; in B on pp. 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 11, 12, 15, 22, 26, 28, 29 (including an English sentence in semi-Gaelic lettering on p. 7, “And then you shall not pay it in anye time ” [in written above anye], and frequent jottings of “riaghail generalta” [e.g., p. 12] in the margins of both B and C, where the text treats of general rules as opposed to rules concerning this or that word) ; in C on pp. 42, 43, 44, 45. (ii) A 17th cent. hand (?) has scribbled "J. S. Mc Brien" (all letters before Brien doubtful owing to flourishes) on the upper margin of p. 68 of C. (iii) Charles O’Conor of Belanagare has written (B, p. 27) “Beag meas ar an obair so anos;" in D, p. 1, he has completed the heading and identified the scribe; some of the date-calculations, D, pp. 15-16, may be by him. (iv) A 19th cent, (and perhaps also a 20th cent.) hand has made English notes on the text in D, pp. 6, 15, 16. Capitals and the lines for the musical notation, on p. 2 of A, are in red. All the vellum leaves, with the exception of pp. 1-2 of A, are in double columns. Pp. 1 and 10 of A and p. 73 of C are discoloured and worn by rubbing. There are holes in the vellum of B in the middle of the leaf numbered 14-15, but no text has been lost. C continues the text of B, but there is a chasm between the two sections. The MS. is bound in tooled leather, lettered (in gold on the back) “Irish MSS. No. XX.” The same lettering is to be found on the face of the front cover, followed by the title “ Vocabulerium [sic] Vetus Hibernicum et Miscellanea Vetera.” (Stowe Irish mss. 20. Stowe and Ashburnham collections).



1- 2. This opening leaf is clearly a stray leaf, either used as cover for, or perhaps merely accidentally bound along with the four leaves which follow. It contains (i) (on p.1) Four lines of Latin in a large Gothic book-hand. The ink is faded and the vellum stained so that the text is hard to read. (ii) (onp. 2) Four lines of Latin in the same hand with musical notation above them. They begin (. . lcem[?]) quam in deserto petra praemonstrauit, and are apparently part of a canticle in honour of the Blessed Virgin (c/. 1. 4 “. . . Virgo Mater . . .”). Capital letters and the lines for the musical notation are in red. (iii) (on p. 1) A partly illegible English signature. (iv) (on p. 2) English signatures and scribblings—one dated 1627. Items iii and iv are almost certainly later than i and ii.

3. Gais Aillbe ai n-inighín Domnaill. 38 qq. X 5 qq. (omitting q. 11 of the version in 3, 137 b, and containing 4 qq. not in that version). The main poem is for Sadhbh, daughter of Domhnall Mac Carrthaigh (cf. qq. 1, 3, 8). The additional concluding quatrains are (i) for an “Eoghaín” [sic] son of ‘‘Domhnall Óg.” (ii) for a ‘Buadhach’ apparently belonging to “Sí[o] I Dumnaníg” [sic]. (iii) for Art Ó Caímh. (iv) for ‘Ó Dondchadha’ (Tadhg). (v) A prayer to the Archangel Michael.

4, col. /3, 1. 21. Andam neill raigna [recte Annamh néll rígna]os raith Cuircc. 44 qq. For ‘Mór’ (qq. 9, 17, etc.) daughter of ‘Conchubhar’ (q. 19) ‘Ó Briain’ (q. 30).

6, col. a,1. 39. Sgaradh re Daibidh a doigh. 42 + 2 qq. For “Daibhidh Og” (q. 42) “mac Mhic Gearailt” (q. 30). He is called “mac Mhic Gibún” in q. 41 and his father's name is given as “Daib[h]ith” in q. 4. The two extra quatrains are for ‘Ailen,’ ‘inghean Mhic Mhuiris’ (also called ‘inghean G[h]earoid').

8, col. a, 1. 23. Aithrighe sund duit, a Dhe. 26 qq. Religious. In the lower margin of p. 8 the first quatrain of the poem is rewritten, with some variations, in a ruder style of writing. On the lower and upper margins of p. 9 are Irish phrases (probationes pennae, or notes on the text?) written by the hand which wrote the text of pp. 8 and 9, and on the lower margins are some very rudely scribbled words (probationes pennae?).

9, col. /3, 1. 8. Here begin quotations (?) to exemplify some metrical or grammatical principle (?). Some at least of the quotations seem to contain hypermetrical syllables (e.g., the three syllables of barruaíne in the first quotation). Beg.Gas lossa gona duille barruaíne tucc duíne dhamh annossa. Ends (11. 24-25) Druím naball is doilge gach ndeigeanach as usa a eg ana fulang.

9, col. /3, 1. 26. Here are five lines in a rude style of writing (less rude, however, than that of 'the very rudely scribbled words’ on the lower margins of pp. 8 and 9 already mentioned). The first two lines are chamat amath- Tílonteclar // Tilon tecla teclup teclaar te.

10. This page is so worn and stained as to render what traces of writing remain upon it almost wholly illegible. A few words near the top have been re-inked.



1. Treatise on verbs, verbal nouns and abstract nouns, forming part of the IRISH GRAMMATICAL TRACTS being published by Prof. O. J. Bergin a:s a supplement to Ériu (1916, etc.). The correct forms (and some forms stated to be incorrect) of each verb are listed under the verbal noun which corresponds to them. The lists are followed in every case by examples in the form of distichs quoted from poems in strict syllabic metre. Lists and examples are treated here as forming one paragraph. The first paragraph is Déanamh; the last An aithenta. A typed alphabetical index to the paragraphs has been inserted in the ms. by the present cataloguer. The tract ends at the foot of col. a of p. 27. Col. /3 is blank except for the note "Beag meas ar an obair so anos” in the handwriting of Charles O’Conor of Belanagare.

28a. Fragment (beginning perfect) of the mainly syn­tactical section of the IRISH GRAMMATICAL TRACTS (cf. preceding item). Beg, ‘Atú a n-aghaidh bfir’ [corrected to bhfhir in a late ink] cóir o bheith do ghníomh ’na aghaidh: 'a n-aghaidh fhir’ lochdach on ceill sin [=24P8, 187]. Though the opening paragraph of this recension is substantially the same as that of the recension contained in 24 P 8 (=752, 187), the other paragraphs differ very considerably both in content and arrangement. The last complete sentence of the fragment as now con­tained in the present ms. (last lines of 29/3) correspond to 24 P 8, p. 210, last two lines. The fragment is, however, continued on a vellum leaf which once formed pp. 30-31 of the present ms., and which is now to be found among the miscellaneous scraps bound as D I 1. (It is bound about the middle of the volume in the middle of a; number of old, very worn, vellum leaves). The last line on the verso of this stray leaf (p. 31/3) reads acht enmholadh mar ta so : as gil’s as geala [= 24 P 8, p. 200, 1. 6]. Here the tract breaks off imperfect, but is con­tinued, after a chasm, in the next section (“C”) of the present ms.


42. Continuation (after a chasm) of the last item of the preceding section. Beg. with the example As i ciall a ronna araon. mían an dha thaobh orra d’agh [=24P8, 212, 1. 26]. The resemblance between the two recensions is here so slight that it might be better to describe them as two different works treating of similar matter but arranging it quite differently. Thus the matter about the middle of col. /3 of p. 45 of the present ms. agrees roughly with that of the upper half of p. 226 of 24 P 8; but the last lines of col. /3 of p. 45 of the present MS. ("Tigim don bhaile" cóirtri cialla ann, no a leitheid eile ar gach n-einphearsain, acht gu rabh di[u]ltadh ceille aice) agree with 1. 4 sq. of p. 211 of 24P 8. After p. 45 there is a chasm in the present MS., the next page being numbered 66. The first lines of p. 66 contain an example A neart le neach gemadh neamhait, do-neath reacht seabhaic a sas. Remarks on the syntax of the subjunctive mood follow. P. 68, col. a, 1. 1, of the present MS., corresponds to p. 197, 1. 25, of 24 P 8. P. 71 (wrongly numbered 70), col. a, 1. 21, of the present MS., corresponds roughly to p. 205, 1. 7, of 24 P 8. P. 72, col. /3, 11. 36-37, of the present MS., read “Gidh me bus fearr bhuaileas tu”: “gidh me bus fearr dad- buaile” a sealbhadhon suidhighiud[h]. LI. 38-41 (i.e. the last four lines of p. 72) are commentary on this example.P. 73 (the outermost page of Section C) is almost wholly illegible owing to rubbing and staining. The lower half of col. /3 of p. 73 shows hardly any traces of writing and may have been left blank by the original scribe.


1. Giolla Mo Dhuda Ua Caisside. Eire ógh, inis na naomh. 83 qq. (of which three contain extra half- quatrains). The description “Manach Daimhinnsi” has been added to the author’s name in the handwriting of Charles O’Conor of Belanagare followed by the note “Muiris Úa Gormáin ro scríbh. ” Some reader has numbered the lines in pencil. A few early date calcu­lations on margins were probably made by Charles O’Conor of Belanagare. Further calculations and some remarks in English were subsequently added in a later ink by a different hand.

17. (i) A shíogaidh sagairt ata le fada faoi phéin go bocht. 1 st. To a cured priest asking for his crutches. (ii) Mo chúis, a shagairt, ’s e ar thathuigh tu féin dod chorp. 1 st. “Freagra.”

18. Aithneidh dhamh homo (duine) re haoí (healadhain). 10 qq. The bracketed words are glosses written in the ms. above the words to which they refer.

20. “Seafraigh Ó Ruairc.” An chraobh chumhra uaim don tsaoí. 3 qq. + 1 st. “Pronntanus na bliadhna nuaidhe ó Sheafraigh Ó Ruairc ’ic Toirr dhealbhaigh ’ic Feidhleime chum Thaidhg Ui Roduighe ’ic Gearoid, anno Dominini [sic] 1702.”

22. Seumus Mac Cuarta. B’fheárr leam gearrán Briain Ui Bheirnn. 3 qq.+ 1 st. [On a horse called Punch.]