Tionól 2004

The following papers were given at the School’s annual Tionól, 19-20 November, 2004.

Jacqueline Borsje
Fear personified: úatha in early Irish texts

When Cú Chulainn as a boy is looking for King Conchobar on the field of battle, he encounters a frightening spectre (Táin Bó Cúailnge Recension I, ll. 481-523). The spectre almost subdues him, but a taunt from the Badb makes Cú Chulainn overcome the phantom. When he finds Conchobar at last, the king chides the child: he could easily have died from fright at this dismal place. This death from terror that the king refers to is indicated by the term úathbás. The word for terror or fear is úath, but this term also refers to dangerous supernatural beings that cause extreme fright and may personify fear. This paper will discuss early Irish supernatural beings that are designated úath and/or fúath.

Caoimhín Breatnach
The transmission of the Rawlinson B 502 version of Sex Aetates Mundi and a poem on the Convention of Druimm Cete

In this paper versions of Sex Aetates Mundi found in manuscripts which have previously been held to derive directly from Rawlinson B 502 will be re-examined. It will be argued that the stemma on p. 48 of Dáibhí Ó Cróinín‘s edition of the text must be revised. Ó Cróinín‘s deduction from the evidence of manuscripts supposedly copied directly from Rawlinson B 502 that the latter is the Book of Glendalough will also be called into question. The importance of distinguishing between Rawlinson B 502 and the Book of Glendalough in the case of the poem Druim Cetta Céte na Naem will also be discussed.

Liam Breatnach
A tale of poets

The short tale in TCD MS H 3. 18, pp. 754-5 has not received much attention since its publication by Kuno Meyer in ZCP 7 (1910) 304-5 under the title ‘Bestrafter Pferdediebstahl’ (followed in the TCD manuscript catalogue p. 156 with ‘Horse Theft Punished’), which is hardly an adequate description. Satire is a particularly important theme, and, apart from the question of dating the text, it is this aspect of the tale I propose to concentrate on in this paper.

Marion Deane
Birth of Cú Chulainn – birth of culture

Compert Con Culainn concerns not only the birth of a child. The narrative marks a moment of transition between nature and culture. It illustrates how cultural systems, such as marriage and clientship, as established in early Irish law, derived from the prohibition of incest. It illustrates how these systems were based on the principles of reciprocity, and were founded in psychic properties of the human mind.

Roy Flechner
On some ‘local’ sources of the Hibernensis

Among the numerous sources cited in the Hibernensis, those of Insular origin are of particular interest to early medieval Irish history. Some of these sources (e.g. various synodal constitutions) are known only through excerpts preserved in the Hibernensis. In other cases the Hibernensis sheds light on obscure sources that are cursorily attested elsewhere (e.g. in Tírechán, Cummian, Aldhelm).

The present paper discusses some of the less familiar ‘local’ sources that served the compilers of the Hibernensis, and identifies new sources.

Patricia Kelly
‘The Monastery of Tallaght’: some new evidence

The Gwynn-Purton edition of ‘The Monastery of Tallaght’ is based largely on a single manuscript witness, 23 B 23 (RIA 994). Only short fragments have been found in other sources. Further fragments have now come to light, in an 18th-century manuscript purportedly copied in part from a 17th-century exemplar in the hand of Conall Mageoghegan. The paper examines the language of this new witness.

Dan McCarthy
The identity and contribution of hand H2 to TCD 1282 (AU)

TCD 1282 is the primary manuscript source for the important collection of annals that have normally been designated the ‘Annals of Ulster’ ever since James Ussher first applied the title ‘Annales Ultonienses’ to them in 1609. The principal scribe of this manuscript was Ruaidhrí Ó Luinín whose family held the office of erenagh of the Ard, County Fermanagh, from the late fourteenth century to the sixteenth. However after Ó Luinín had completed his work on the manuscript a much less skilled hand made substantial additions to it.

This hand was identified by Bartholomew Mac Carthy in 1901 with Cathal mac Maghnusa † 1498, Dean of Lough Erne and compiler of the manuscript, on the grounds that the hand recorded the births of several of Cathal’s children. The hand was labelled H2 in the 1983 edition of AU by Mac Airt & Mac Niocaill, and in his preface Gearóid Mac Niocaill repeated Mac Carthy’s identification, and this was also accepted by Nollaig Ó Muraíle in his introduction to the 1998 facsimile edition of Hennessy & Mac Carthy. Thus every edition of AU published in the twentieth century has identified this hand with Cathal mac Maghnusa.

However collation of TCD 1282 and Rawl. B 489, together with Prof. Brian Ó Cuív‘s invaluable catalogue of Irish MSS in the Bodleian Library shows that H2 was in fact Ruaidhrí Ó Casaide † 1541, archdeacon of Clogher, whose family background was medical rather than historical or literary. This paper will present the evidence for this identification and outline Ruaidhrí Ó Casaide‘s contributions to the manuscript.

Jim McCloskey
Comhréir an chlásail neamhfhinidigh i gcanúintí Gaeilge na Mumhan

Is é príomhchuspóir na léachta seo cuntas a thabairt (más cuntas páirteach féin é) ar struchtúr an chlásail neamhfhinidigh i gcanúintí Nua-Ghaeilge na Mumhan, cuntas a chuirfeadh san áireamh ní amháin áiseanna comhréire agus foclóra, ach chomh maith leis sin an chodarsnacht idir réimsí éagsúla úsaide (foirmeálta agus neamhfhoirmeálta). Tá cuspóir tánaisteach fosta i gceist: léiriú éigin a thabhairt ar an bhunachar fianaise ríomhaire ar a bhfuil an taighde bunaithe, agus comhairle a iarraidh ar na dóigheanna arbh fhéidir an córas sin a fheabhsú agus a chur ar fáil do lucht taighde i gcoitinne.

Muireann Ní Bhrolcháin
Gormlaith – who were they?

A new light on Gormlaith wife of Olaf, mother of Sitric and others.

Meidhbhín Ní Úrdail
The Eighteenth-Century ‘Annals of Inisfallen’

Three sets of annals, all of which are named the ‘Annals of Inisfallen’, have been transmitted in Gaelic manuscripts of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. These texts were first compiled in the second half of the eighteenth century and are mainly concerned with events relevant to Munster. While the title ‘Annals of Inisfallen’ recalls a more famous set of annals, that compiled between the eleventh and the fifteenth centuries which is now housed in the Bodleian Library at Oxford under the designation Rawlinson B503, that text is to be distinguised from the post-classical triad under discussion here. This paper will present certain differences in the recording of events sub annis 1013, 1014 and the presentation therein of the O’Briens of Thomond. These differences offer further insights into the question of the methodology of Gaelic scribes in the post-classical Modern Irish period.

Máire Nic Mhaoláin
Dornán iasachtaí sa Ghaeilge

Is éard atá i gceist, sanas na bhfocal giústa, bolb, corsaicí, agaill, sna luchogaí, ar féidir a léiriú gur iasachtaí ón mBéarla (sa chiall is leithne) iad.

Brian Ó Curnáin
Gaeilge Pharráiste an Chaisleáin Gheairr

Rugadh Tomás Ó Ceallaigh i mBaile an Phoill i 1913 sa teach tuaithe ba ghoire do chathair na Gaillimhe ar Bhóthar Áth Cinn. Is é an cainteoir dúchais Gaeilge deireanach é as Baile an Phoill, áit atá ina bhruachbhaile anois. Tá Gaeilge shoiléir shaibhir aige, go leor cuimhní cinn faoi shaol chathair na Gaillimhe agus Pharáiste an Chaisleáin Gheairr, agus giotaí d’amhráin a chum a athair. Is féidir a mhaíomh nach bhfaca aon Ghaeilgeoir Gaeltachta a oiread athruithe ina cheantar dúchais leis. Mar shamhail air sin tá an tobar a bhí acu, a raibh cáil air faoina fhionnuaire agus bhlas foláin, Tobar Dhúgáin, tá sin faoi choincréit anois i lár eastát tithíochta. Is é Tomás an dol deiridh i slabhra Gaeilge a tháthaíonns siar go ré Gaelach chathair na Gaillimhe agus na tíre. Ní ainmneacha cumta Sráid na SiopaíBóithrín na Bláthaí, an Mhainistir, Droichead na mBradán, srl., ach dúchas ar bhéal beo (deiridh) na cathrach. Tá tréithe na canúna an-spéisiúil agus an-éagsúil le Gaeilge Chonamara. Cuirfear caint Thomáis i gcomhthéacs teangeolaíoch agus cuirfear Tomás féin i láthair.

Jan Erik Rekdal
The hybrid signatum in Irish texts

The references to Irish literature in Hiberno-Latin texts and Latin literature in Irish texts – and their implications for the dialogue or fusing of pagan and Christian traditions. The topic will be illustrated by an analysis of the zoomorphic survival of pagan heroes.

Paul Russell
The accessory in Irish and Welsh law

In the legal systems of medieval Ireland and Wales the role of the accessory to a crime, i.e. the person who is involved but does not actually do the deed, is significant and interesting. In Welsh law the whole of the law on homicide, theft and arson is constructed around the law regarding the affaith ‘accessory’. In Ireland there are passages on the sellach ‘onlooker’ which reflect a similar attitude to levels of responsibility. There is in addition a more complicated Old Irish text on the áes fíachach which provides a carefully graded analysis of the penalties for different types of accessories. The text was printed , but without translation or discussion, by Smith in Irish Texts, vol. IV, ed. Fraser, Grosjean & O’Keefe; it is also printed in Binchy’s Corpus Iuris Hibernici. But apart from that it has received little attention. This paper aims to set it in the context of other legal material on the accessory from Ireland and Wales.

Richard Mark Scowcroft
‘Leabar Gabála Glind da Locha’

Bodleian Library MS Rawlinson B 512 refers thus to its copy of recensions b (the ‘second’), m (míniugud), and addenda to the Leabhar Gabhála, and testimony from other MSS supports this attribution. I shall discuss this and other questions of derivation and transmission, and then outline the plan for a new edition.

Jürgen Uhlich
The registers of Echaid’s daughter in Fingal Rónáin

This paper will analyse the different registers of language used by Echaid’s daughter in Fingal Rónáin, especially at lines 100-119, as this section stands out from the rest of the tale in containing a particularly high incidence of innovatory linguistic forms.