Catalogue of Irish Manuscripts in Royal Irish Academy

C ii 3

Irish Grammatical Tracts.

16th cent. Vellum. The ms. (ff. 58 and four fragments) is composed of four distinct sections : A. 11¼ × 8½. Ff. 7, paginated 1-14 in pencil. Pp. 1-12 are a ternion, pp. 13, 14 a single leaf. B. 11¼ × 8½. Ff. 12, paginated, 15-18, 19 (5)- 16, 17-24, the pagination 15-19 being in pencil. P. 9 is numbered “10” by error. The composition of the gatherings is as follows :—pp. 15-18; 5 (19)-8 (now singles) ; 10 (recte 9)- 16 ; 17-24. C. 10 X 8. Ff. 19, foliated in pencil 1-8, 9 (old pagination 41), 10 (43)-19 (63 : the nos. “44,” “45” being skipped in pagination). A second foliation running 1-5 stands on ff. '15-19 (pp. 55-[64]). The composition of the gatherings is as follows :—ff. 1-8 ; 9 (single leaf) ; 10-19. D. 9 × 5½. Ff. 24, foliated in pencil 1-24. Four of these (ff. 2, 4, 7, 21) are mere fragments. The composition of the gatherings is as follows:—ff. 1-5, fo. 2 being a single ; 6-12, fo. 7 being a single ; 13-24.

Scribes : A. Frequent changes in hands here, e.g. p. 4. A scribal signature illegible in part reads Senc( ), p. 3, sup. marg. There is no date in this section, but the poet Aodhagán owned it in 1619, when apparently (to judge by the appearance of his inscription) the outer margins were already damaged. Aodhagán was located at Coill Muighe Rusgach and writes his signed colophon on the day of the funeral of Róis, daughter of Ó Madaoin, at which he may have been present. (See p. 3, inf. marg. Marginalia A, infra .) B. The scribe appears to have been Conchubhar, writing for his master or fellow-scribe Gofraidh (see p. 10 recte 9. Marginalia B, infra). There is no date of writing. Charles O’Conor’s statement (p. [8]) that it was written in 1300 carries no weight. C. The scribe is Recdbhath Ó Cionga, acc. to colophon on fo. 19 verso, col. 2 (“F. n. id do barc Recdbhatha I Cionga”). Dr. Bergin suggests (letter dated 2.12.’41) that “Recdbhatha” may be a cipher for “Muirchertaigh” (cf. baath .i. muir. Sanas Corm. 113). An or áit on same column states that the book was written in the house of Tomás Ó Fialáin by Muirchertach, son? of Uilliam Ó Cionga (see fo. 19 verso, col. 2. Marginalia C, infra). Muirchertach Ó Cionga (fl. 1580) is mentioned by O’Reilly, Ir. Writers, p. cxli. An annalistic entry (in part illegible) following the oráit, relates an event of the year 1552 in which Ó Conchabhair Sligeach, Tadhg (l552 Ann. Loch Cé) mac Cathail Óig was involved. A list of the birthdays (1564-158 [0]) of members of the Ó Cionga (?) family (cf. the names Muirchertach Óg and Uilliam), inserted on fo. [6] (p. 36) i. after the ms. was written, supports this theory. For other signatures on this section, see Marginalia C, infra. D. Frequent changes in hand here and indications of close collaboration by compiler- scribes (cf. ff. 2, 5, 7, 8). The only named scribe is Murchadh (see fo. 21 verso), who is probably the scribe who signs himself “M.ldg,” fo. 4 versa (see Marginalia D, infra). The section dates from before 1600, as Seadhan Ua Maelchonaire inserts a marginal note on fo. 18 verso, col. 2, on 7th April of that year.

There are chasms in the ms., B being consequently defective at both beginning and end and C, D at beginning. The text is in double column, ruling by dry point and marginal prickings A, C, without prickings B. There are simple geometrical tailpieces and ornamental capitals, coloured with poor pigments, green and red, on B. No decoration whatever on ACD. The ms. is on the whole in good condition, with the following qualifications: A. Erasure on p. 1, later inscription on p. 2, sup. marg., effaced. Superior outer corners and inferior inner margins of pp. 1-14 decayed. Stains passim. Erasure on p. 14 (and that on p. 1) probably existed before the vellum was written on ; the scribe seems to avoid writing on rased vellum. B. Outer sides of initial and final folios rubbed and defaced, final folio verso (p. 24) dark, torn and worn to a hole. C. Fo. 1 recto stained, inferior outer corner cut away. Last folio, fo. 19 verso (p. [64]) very rubbed and stained, a great tear in the vellum mended at one time with thread. Liquid spilt on pp. 30, 31 has effaced the writing in part. P. 35, col. a, is written in ink differing apparently from that of text ; possibly retraced. There are ink stains on pp. 40, 41, erasures on pp. 41, [56], a tear in fo. 16. (pp. 57, 58). Retracing on fo. 19 verso (p. [64]). D. Ff. 2, 4, 7 are fragments, fo. 21 a mere slip (2 X 1). Ff. 9, 10 are shorter than the rest. There is a crease in fo. 22 and the last leaf (fo. 24) is eaten through by what appears to be rust. Bd. in calf, blind tooled ; gilt lettered "Irish Mss. No. XII. Miscellanea." Formerly in Stowe and Ashburnham Collections. The ms. was previously in the possession of Charles O’Conor, whose hand occurs passim, occasionally even in emendations to text, e.g. B, p. 10 (recte 9), col. 1 m. His dates are given as 1728, 1731. For signatures of early owners, etc., see infra.

The principal marginalia, etc., read as follows. All scribal marginalia, except those which appear to belong to text, are included.



1. “In [n]omine Dei Amen Ihc. Maria.” Scribal hand. “Ihc” passim.

2. i. Aodhagán (see colophon). Saothr(aidhe) bocht in dom(ain) so, 8 qq. In author’s autograph, continued on p. 3i; see infra.

3. "Misi Senc[han]." Scribal signature.

3. i. Conclusion of poem from p. 2 i. Colophon runs :
“Mise Aodhagán do chum 7 do sgriobh na hocht rainn beaca sin 7 is olc in dubh. Caoicis oniu la fheil Brighde. A Coill Muighe Rusgach damh (7) (ata) Rois inghen I Madaoin da cur a talamh aniu 7 tabhair beannacht air a hanam 7 air m’anamsa féin, a leghthoir. 1619.” Added in another hand [O'Conor’s] is the note “Beannacht De for a hanam 7 for d’anamsa Jany (?) 7, 1728. ” Cf. calculation, 1728-1619 = 109, p. 9 i.

4 i. [Do] thoil De a ndubhrumair, 8 qq. Continued on pp. 5i., 6. Later ink, partly obliterated.

8. “ ’S olc ro sgríobhadh sin.” O’Conor’s hand.

11. Secht consaine ann nach tram, 31/2 qq. Resembles Aodhagán’s hand.

13. “(Mebruig) gach rann,” etc. Appears to be advice to students; in scribal hand.

14. The scribal note here appears to be part of text.

14, col. b. “ ’S olc leam nach dtuigim an leabar so et foraoir as eglach mé gurab robheag an t-iúl chailleas me le mo neamhthuigse air. Cathal O Conchubhair, an .iu. la don Béalltaine, anno M.DCC.XXXI.”



6. “Ihc. Maria.” Scribal hand.

[8]. “Anno 1300 rosgriobhadh sin la Cathal O Conchabhair.”

10. (recte 9). "Sin, a Ghofraigh, o Chonchubar duit 7 mo scaith le mo mhonur." Scribal hand.

24. “Mallacht ar lucht im(birte) in (ebir).”



[6] verso (p. 36) i. List of persons with date of birth. In part obliterated, continues on fo. 7 (p. 37) i. The names and year dates are as follows : -

( )................................M. u.c iii.xx iiii.

( )................................M. u.c iii.xx 7 u.

Moilin..........................M. u.c iii.xx 7 uii.

Muirchertach Og.........M. u.c iii.xx 7 ix.

Uilliam.........................M. u.c iii.xx xiiii.

Niall ............................M. u.c iii.xx ( ).

Diarmuid ....................M. u.c iii.xx xui.

Conchubar..................M. u.c iii.xx xix.

Una.............................M. u.c iiii.xx ( ).

10 (p. 43)i. “Mise fein Ca[ ].” Later ink.

12 (p. 49). Ni bia to ch(er)t nar gcinn-ne, etc. Faded ink. Headed “Ag so dan o (Thadg) 0 Chobthaigh,” etc.

13 (p. 51). “Misi beas mar ( )." In blue ink. Last word is in cipher.

14 i. Ni feassach clan(d Ch)athfaidh, etc. 2 11. erased.

14. verso (p. 54). “Ich Nasurenus.” This error, Viz., “Ich” for “Ihc” occurs passim in this section, C. In scribal hand. "Dia do cobhair na n-aingel.” In scribal hand.

14 verso (p. 54) i. “Edmond Bowen.” Later ink.

14 verso (p. 54) i. “Misi Seon Óg ar mo leabhar fen gidhbe thusa ata ar mo thi.”

15 (p. 55). Cia hír is díxa ina ceal, 4 11. (1 q.?).

15 (p. 55) i. Irish alphabet ending “ 7 est Amen. " Followed by a note “Ag sin agud, a thSeoin Oig, 7 beannacht leis chugat.” A probatio pennae stands in outer corner.

15 verso. Tadg O Cobthaigh. Tig tre (?) fhuil dTail na tendal(?), 1 q.

15 verso i. (inverted). Two quatrains on “ Clann Chathfaigh . . . " Initial line illegible.

19 verso (p. 64), col. b. "Oroid don fhelmac do sgriob in bare so do fein .i. Muire [er] tach glan Uilliam I Cionga 7 a Lis in L . . . ain a tigh Tomais I Fhialain a tiasg agus a forba in satharn iar bfeil Pedair.

Kall. enair for aoini in ando sin . . . Echta mora isin bliadain sin a Leith Cuind 7 a Leith Mogha. A haon dibh, O Concabair Sligeach .i. Tadg mac Cathail Óig meic Domnaill meic Eogain meic,” etc., followed by twenty faded lines of text. Ends : “Aáois Christ in tan sin .i. 2 bliadain deg 7 2 .xx. 7 .u. ced 7 mile. Mise Donnchad mac Senchain 7 bennacht,”etc. The cataloguer is indebted to Dr. 0. J. Bergin for deciphering the text of oráit as given here.



1 verso i. "Muilfeara ( )." In later ink.

4 verso. “As olc an litir si agam. Mesi .M.ldg” (with mark of length over “ldg”). Lighter ink than text.

11 verso. Ni tic glas do gothaibh en, 1/2 q. Scribal.

18 verso; col. b. "Iarrann an sgribhneoir ara leughtheoir bennacht do thabhairt fora anam et iarruimsi an gceudhna ro sgriobh an mhemhoir so. Aprilis 7 ° anno 1600 [in rasura ?] .i. Seadhan Ua Maelchonaire.” O’Conor adds “Deo Gratias.”

21 (a mere slip). "Feacuin. Comortus annso re Murchadh."

21 verso. “Comortas lais an sgribhneoir.” In Seán Ó Maolchonaire’s hand (?).



1. Irish Grammatical Tract, treating mainly of Syntax. Headed (in later hand and ink) “Leabar na Focal so sios.” Beg. Atu a n-aghaidh bhfir .c. o bheith do ghnimh na aghaidh; “a n-aghaidh fhir” .l. on cheill sin. Cf. the recensions in 750, B, p. 28a, C, p. 42; 752, p. 187. The present text differs from them in sequence and readings. Ends, p. 14, col. b, 1. 4, with the words persana lóir annso budheasda.



15 [1]. Irish Grammatical Tract. Declensions. Acephalous and incomplete, beg. here Caidhe an lis no an cloighi cuir (= ed. Bergin, Ir. Gramm. Tracts II, p. 41). Ends imperfect, p. 24 of early pagination, with the words bean naireach of section beg. Bean b[h] lath (=op. cit., p. 146). Cf. 752, p. 51, and section C, infra.



1 [p. 25]. Irish Grammatical Tract, Declensions. Acephalous, beg. here, Din do chraoibh ar lar luisni (= op. cit., p. 40). Ends, fo. 19 verso [p. 64], col. b, with the scribal colophon : “ do barc Recdbhatha I Cionga.” A lengthy note follows on same column, giving date 1552 (see Marginalia C, supra). The text is a copy of the same recension as that preserved in section B, supra.



1. Irish Grammatical Tract. Declensions. Acephalous, beg. here, Buille buile fine bine aicme (= op. cit., p. 37). A different recension of the text in sections B, C, supra. Cf. 752, p. 51. Ends, fo. 18 verso, with the words bó fa sliab buire ni bia. A peculiarity of this section, ff. 2, 5, 7, 8 et passim, is that it is a composite text, two or three hands having worked on it in close collaboration, compiling the material.

19. Irish Grammatical Tract. Verbs. Beg. with paradigm Denamh, deanemh .f. déanaimh déanimh. Fo. 21 is a mere scrap of vellum bearing scribal note, see Description. Ends fo. 24 recto m. with paradigm of Dígbad, the rest of recto and fo. 24 verso being blank. Defect on this last folio causes damage to text. Text ends with the words ni digband nir digaib[ ] re hucht consain. Short recension of tract in 750, B, p. 1.