Dublin, Royal Irish Academy, MS 23 P 2 Book of Lecan (Leabhar Leacain)

  • Irish, Latin
  • s. xvin distinct manuscript
  • Irish manuscripts
  • vellum
23 P 2
Book of Lecan (Leabhar Leacain)

Modern Irish: Leabhar Leacain, also called the Great Book of Lecan (Modern Irish: Leabhar Mór Leacain); also known as the Great Book of the Mac Firbis of Lecan (Leabhar Mór Mhic Fhir Bhisigh Leacáin).

manuscript miscellanies Irish narrative literature vernacular Irish verse Irish histories Irish religious literature Irish genealogies
Provenance and related aspects
Irish Secondary: Latin
s. xvin
Beginning of the 15th century.
Hands, scribes
Hands indexed:
Principal hand Chief compiler and scribe who identifies himself as Giolla Íosa Mac Fhir Bhisigh on more than one occasion. Giolla Íosa Mac Fhir BhisighMac Fhir Bhisigh (Giolla Íosa)
(fl. c. 1390–1418)
No short description available
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Assistant hand 1 Ádam Ó Cuirnín Ádam Ó CuirnínÓ Cuirnín (Ádam)
(fl. c. 1418)
Irish scribe, assistant of Giolla Íosa Mac Fhir Bhisigh.
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Assistant hand 2 Murchadh Riabhach Ó Cuindlis. Murchadh Ó CuindlisÓ Cuindlis (Murchadh)
(fl. c.1400?)
Murchadh (Riabhach) Ó Cuindlis, Irish scribe; pupil of Giolla Íosa Mac Fhir Bhisigh
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Codicological information
UnitCodicological unit. Indicates whether the entry describes a single leaf, a distinct or composite manuscript, etc.
distinct manuscript
Table of contents

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While it is not a reality yet, CODECS seeks consistency in formatting references to locations of texts and other items of interest in manuscripts. Our preferences may be best explained with some examples:

  • f. 23ra.34: meaning folio 23 recto, first column, line 34
  • f. 96vb.m: meaning folio 96, verso, second column, middle of the page (s = top, m = middle, i = bottom)
    • Note that marg. = marginalia, while m = middle.
  • p. 67b.23: meaning page 67, second column, line 23
The list below has been collated from the table of contents, if available on this page,Progress in this area is being made piecemeal. Full and partial tables of contents are available for a small number of manuscripts. and incoming annotations for individual texts (again, if available).Whenever catalogue entries about texts are annotated with information about particular manuscript witnesses, these manuscripts can be queried for the texts that are linked to them.


Primary sources This section typically includes references to diplomatic editions, facsimiles and photographic reproductions, notably digital image archives, of at least a major portion of the manuscript. For editions of individual texts, see their separate entries.

[dig. img.] “Royal Irish Academy”, Anne-Marie OʼBrien, and Pádraig Ó Macháin, Irish Script on Screen (ISOS) – Meamrám Páipéar Ríomhaire, Online: School of Celtic Studies, Dublin Institute for Advanced Studies, 1999–present. URL: <>.
[facs. ed.] Mulchrone, Kathleen, The Book of Lecan: Leabhar mór Mhic Fhir Bhisigh Leacain, Facsimiles in Collotype of Irish Manuscripts, 2, Dublin: Stationery Office, 1937. Facsimile edition, with introduction and indexes.

Secondary sources (select)

Mulchrone, Kathleen, Thomas F. OʼRahilly, Elizabeth Fitzpatrick, and A. I. Pearson, Catalogue of Irish manuscripts in the Royal Irish Academy, 8 vols, Dublin: Royal Irish Academy, 1926–1970.  
8 volumes: Vol. 1, pp. 1–654 (fasc. 1-5) -- Vol. 2, pp. 655–1294 (fasc. 6-10) -- Vol. 3, pp. 1295–1938 (fasc. 11-15) -- Vol. 4, pp. 1939–2578 (fasc. 16-20) -- Vol. 5, pp. 2579–3220 (fasc. 21-25) -- Vol. 6, pp. 3221–3500 (fasc. 26-27) -- Vol. 7 (index 1) -- Vol. 8 (index 2).
Vol. 3, fasc. 13: 1551–1610 [id. 535.]
C. A., Dennis Groenewegen
Page created
November 2010, last updated: March 2024