verse beg. In mac ndíaid a athar a nArd Mauchai

  • verse
  • Early Irish poetry
First words (verse)
  • In mac ndíaid a athar a nArd Mauchai
“The son succeeding his father in Armagh”
First words (prose)
  • Is mairg thairgeubhai a hairisne a luc tíri na n-Gáidhel
In mac ndíaid a athar a nArd Mauchai is the first line of the poem itself. A prose sentence introduces the text in the manuscripts, rendered as ‘Is mairg thairgeubhai a hairisne a luc tíri na n-Gáidhel’ (‘Sorrowful the news that will come to the land of the Gael’) in Meyer’s edition.(1)n. 1 Craig Haggart, ‘Abbatial contention in Armagh in the eighth and ninth centuries: the Comarbada Pátraic as a source’, Studia Hibernica 32 (2002–2003).
Ascribed to: Becc mac Dé
Becc mac Dé
(d. 550s)
legendary seer, best known from literary sources as an Irish prophet associated with Díarmait mac Cerbaill

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f. 19rb
beg. ‘Mairg tairgeba aimsir derigh domuin i mbiad in mac i ndiaid ind athar ind Ardmacha’
ff. 61(118)vb.i–62(119)ra.5
rubric: ‘Buili Bicc meic De’
beg. ‘Is mairg tairgebe a airisne’
Fragment comprising lines 1-19. This text was not used by Meyer.
pp. 93.i–94.10
rubric: ‘Beg mac Dé ro-chan anso sis’
beg. ‘Is maircc tairceba airessni a llucc tire na nGoidel’
verse (primary)
prose (secondary)
Textual relationships

A gloss to Comarbada Pátraic regarding the succession of Dub Dá Léithe, abbot of Armagh, by his son (Connmach) refers to the prophecy by Becc mac Dé (mac Duib da Lethi is e sin in mac i ndiad a athair ut prophetauit Bec mac De - see Haggart, p. 48, below).

Related: Comarbada PátraicComarbada PátraicFursa Cráiptech profetauitFursa Cráiptech profetauitProphecy attributed to St Fursa (the Devout)Trédhe nach fuilngeand rígh réilTrédhe nach fuilngeand rígh réil

Medieval Irish prophetic poem (72 qq) attributed in the final stanza to Bécán Bec mac Dé, better known elsewhere as the prophet Bec mac Dé. According to Eleanor Knott, it is a composite work, which may be regarded as falling into at least two sections (A = qq. 1–13, B = qq. 14-72).


Early Irish poetryEarly Irish poetry

Early Irish poetryEarly Irish poetry


Ard Macha
Ard Macha ... Armagh
County Armagh
No short description available

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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.] Meyer, Kuno [ed.], “Mitteilungen aus irischen Handschriften: Beg mac Dé profetauit”, Zeitschrift für celtische Philologie 9 (1913): 169–171.
CELT – edition: <link> Internet Archive: <link>
Translation wanted
No translation recorded at this stage.

Secondary sources (select)

Haggart, Craig, “Abbatial contention in Armagh in the eighth and ninth centuries: the Comarbada Pátraic as a source”, Studia Hibernica 32 (2002–2003): 35–58.
Dennis Groenewegen
Page created
October 2011, last updated: January 2024