Aided Finn (Egerton 92) ‘The death of Finn (mac Cumaill)’

  • Early Middle Irish, Late Old Irish
  • Finn Cycle
  • extent: fragmentary
Fragment of a text relating a version of the story of Finn's death. Finn is said to have died in old age while attempting to leap the River Boyne over a place called Léimm (Find). His body is discovered by Aiclech, son of Dub Drenn, and the three sons of Urgriu. Aiclech severs the head and for this act, he is slain by his three companions.
Aided Finn (Egerton 92)
‘The death of Finn (mac Cumaill)’
No title occurs in the manuscript.
  • Early Middle Irish Late Old Irish
  • early Middle Irish, or late Old Irish
10th century (Meyer).(1)n. 1 Kuno Meyer, Fianaigecht (1910): xxv.
Textual relationships
Cf. the poem beginning ‘Rodíchned Find, ba fer tend


Finn Cycle
Finn Cycle
id. 578


death of Finn mac Cumaillbiography of Finn mac Cumaill
death of Finn mac Cumaill
id. 61055
Finn mac Cumaill
Finn mac Cumaill (Find úa Báiscni)
(time-frame ass. with Finn Cycle, Finn mac Cumaill, Cormac mac Airt)
Finn mac Cumaill (earlier mac Umaill?), Find úa Báiscni: central hero in medieval Irish and Scottish literature of the so-called Finn Cycle; warrior-hunter and leader of a fían

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River BoyneRiver Boyne
Entry reserved for but not yet available from the subject index.

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Kuno Meyer, Fianaigecht (1910): xxv.

Primary sources Text editions and/or modern translations – in whole or in part – along with publications containing additions and corrections, if known. Diplomatic editions, facsimiles and digital image reproductions of the manuscripts are not always listed here but may be found in entries for the relevant manuscripts. For historical purposes, early editions, transcriptions and translations are not excluded, even if their reliability does not meet modern standards.

[ed.] [tr.] Meyer, Kuno [ed. and tr.], “The death of Finn mac Cumaill”, Zeitschrift für celtische Philologie 1 (1897): 462–465.
CELT: <link> CELT: <link> Internet Archive: <link>
[tr.] Meyer, Kuno, Fianaigecht: being a collection of hitherto inedited Irish poems and tales relating to Finn and his Fiana, Todd Lecture Series, 16, London: Hodges, Figgis, 1910.
National Library of Scotland – PDF: <link> Internet Archive: <link> Internet Archive: <link>
xxv Translation of part of the text.

Secondary sources (select)

Murray, Kevin, The early Finn Cycle, Dublin: Four Courts Press, 2017. 200 pp.  
The Finn (or Fenian) Cycle (fíanaigecht) is classified by modern scholarship as one of four medieval Irish literary cycles along with the Ulster Cycle, the Cycle of Historical Tales (or Cycles of the Kings) and the Mythological Cycle. It is primarily composed of material dealing with the legendary character Finn mac Cumaill, his warrior band (fían), his son Oisín and his grandson Oscar. In a fashion recalling the expansion of the Arthurian legend throughout Europe, the traditions centred on Finn grew from localized beginnings to spread throughout the entire Gaelic-speaking world. This study takes as its focus the early Finn Cycle, up to and including the composition of the most significant fíanaigecht tale, Acallam na senórach (‘The colloquy of the ancients’), at the beginning of the Early Modern Irish period. The volume also deals in detail with topics such as the nature of the fían; the extent of early fragmentary Finn Cycle sources; the background to Tóraigheacht Dhiarmada agus Ghráinne (‘The pursuit of Diarmaid and Gráinne’); the boyhood deeds and death of Finn; and the development of the Fenian lay tradition. The Early Finn Cycle details and investigates the primary and secondary sources for the study of this material and traces the literary development of the early fíanaigecht corpus. In so doing, it seeks to account for the emergence of the Finn Cycle from fragmentarily documented beginnings to become the dominant genre of Gaelic literature after 1200.
124 ff
Parsons, Geraldine, “Breaking the cycle? Accounts of the death of Finn”, in: Sharon J. Arbuthnot, and Geraldine Parsons (eds), The Gaelic Finn tradition, Dublin: Four Courts Press, 2012. 81–96.
Dennis Groenewegen
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June 2011, last updated: January 2024