An Biobla Naomhtha‘The Holy Bible’

  • Modern sources on Ireland, Printed book
In 1690, the Irish translations of the Old and New Testament were published together as An Biobla Naomhtha. The printing of this book, which involved transliteration from Irish into Roman characters, was overseen by Rev. Robert Kirk, who intended it for Scottish Gaelic readers. Kirk’s effort met with little enthusiasm.
Textual relationships
Related: Gaelic-English vocabulary to Bedell’s Bible of 1690Gaelic-English vocabulary to Bedell’s Bible of 1690

A brief, alphabetically arranged vocabulary (5½ pages) printed at the end of the 1690 edition of Bedell’s Irish Bible (An Biobla Naomhtha), which was the first to combine the Old and New Testaments. The list was compiled by Robert Kirk, minister of Aberfoyle, who supervised the printed of this edition and appended the vocabulary to explain unfamiliar classical Irish words to Scottish readers who might be struggling with the translation. Most of the glosses are in English, while a smaller proportion of them are in Scottish Gaelic.


Modern sources on IrelandModern sources on Ireland

Printed bookPrinted book

Leabhuir an tSean Tiomna » entry

Tiomna nuadh ar d’Tighearna agus ar slanaightheora Iosa Criosd » entry

First printed in 1602

Gaelic glossary » entry


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.

Bedell, William, and William OʼDomhnuill, Biobla naomhtha: ann a bhfuilid an tSean Tiomnadh...Uilliam Bhedel / agus an Tiomna Nuadh...Uilliam O Domhnuill, London: British and Foreign Bible Society, 1817.
Internet Archive: <link> Internet Archive – NT: <link>
Bedell, William [et al.], and Uillam Ó Domhnuill [et al.], An Biobla Naomhtha: iona bhfuil Leabhair na Seintiomna... / agus na Tiomna Nuaidhe..., ed. Robert Kirk, London: R. Ebheringtham, 1690.
EEBO – Transcription: <link>

Secondary sources (select)

Williams, N. J. A., I bprionta i leabhar: na Protastúin agus prós na Gaeilge, 1567–1714, Dublin: An Clóchomhar, 1987.
Ó Baoill, Colm, “Kirk’s Egerton glossary”, Scottish Gaelic Studies 14:2 (1986): 123–127.
Dennis Groenewegen
Page created
June 2013, last updated: April 2021