Betha Decclain

  • Early Modern Irish
  • prose
  • Irish hagiography
Vernacular Irish translation of the Latin Life of St Declán of Ardmore (Vita sancti Declani).
Leabhar le Eochaidh Ua hIfearnáin
See notes to the Brussels MS.
ff. 171–193
Written by Mícheál Ó Cléirigh, whose colophon at the end of the text (f. 193) suggests that the text was copied in 1629 from a sein-leabhar dated 1582 belonging to, or at least in the keeping of, Eochaidh Ó hIfearnáin (Eochy O'Heffernan).(1)n. 1 Patrick C. Power, Life of St. Declan of Ardmore and Life of St. Mochuda of Lismore (1914): xxvi; Charles Plummer, Vitae sanctorum Hiberniae, partim hactenus ineditae, vol. 2 (1910): lxi.
pp. 109–120
Late copy (1740) based on an incomplete exemplar
Plummer mentions two late manuscripts:
  • Early Modern Irish
prose (primary)


Irish hagiographyIrish hagiography

Irish hagiographyIrish hagiography


Déclán of Ardmore
Déclán of Ardmore
Déclán mac Eircc (late 5th century), patron saint of Ard Mór (Ardmore, Co. Waterford)

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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.] Power, P. [ed.], Life of St. Declan of Ardmore and Life of St. Mochuda of Lismore, Irish Texts Society, 16, London: Irish Texts Society, 1914.
Internet Archive: <link>, <link> Internet Archive: <link>, <link> CELT – introduction (i–xxxi), edition (2–72): <link> CELT – introduction (i–xxxi), translation (3–73): <link>

Secondary sources (select)

Ó Riain, Pádraig, A dictionary of Irish saints, Dublin: Four Courts Press, 2011.  
Scarcely a parish in Ireland is without one or more dedications to saints, in the form of churches in ruins, holy wells or other ecclesiastical monuments. This book is a guide to the (mainly documentary) sources of information on the saints named in these dedications, for those who have an interest in them, scholarly or otherwise. The need for a summary biographical dictionary of Irish saints, containing information on such matters as feastdays, localisations, chronology, and genealogies, although stressed over sixty years ago by the eminent Jesuit and Bollandist scholar, Paul Grosjean, has never before been satisfied. Professor Ó Riain has been working in the field of Irish hagiography for upwards of forty years, and the material for the over 1,000 entries in his Dictionary has come from a variety of sources, including Lives of the saints, martyrologies, genealogies of the saints, shorter tracts on the saints (some of them accessible only in manuscripts), annals, annates, collections of folklore, Ordnance Survey letters, and other documents. Running to almost 700 pages, the body of the Dictionary is preceded by a preface, list of sources and introduction, and is followed by comprehensive indices of parishes, other places (mainly townlands), alternate (mainly anglicised) names, subjects, and feastdays.
Plummer, Charles, Vitae sanctorum Hiberniae, partim hactenus ineditae, 2 vols, vol. 1, Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1910.
Internet Archive: <link>
lxi–lxii direct link
Dennis Groenewegen
Page created
April 2016, last updated: January 2024