Manuscripts

Oxford, Bodleian Library, MS Laud Misc. 615 Saltair Choluim Chille

  • Irish
  • s. xvi1
  • Irish manuscripts
  • vellum

A collection of medieval Irish verse, mainly of a religious nature, containing about 150 poems that are either attributed to Colum Cille or that relate to the saint in some other way.

Identifiers
Location
Collection: Laud manuscripts
Shelfmark
Laud Misc. 615
Title
Saltair Choluim Chille
(Psalter of Colum Cille)
Type
duanairí religious literature
Provenance and related aspects
Language
Irish
Date
s. xvi1
First half of the 16th century. “The nature of the contents of MS. Laud Misc. 615 suggests that it was compiled and written in the early decades of the sixteenth century at a time when work was in progress on the ‘Life’ [of Colum Cille].” (Ó Cuív).
Origin, provenance
Origin: Ireland
Ireland
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Ulster
Ulster/Cúige Uladh
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Later provenance: Ireland
Ireland
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Ulster
Ulster/Cúige Uladh
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ass. with Uaitéar Mac SuibhneMac Suibhne (Uaitéar)
Entry reserved for but not yet available from the subject index.

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See the poem on pp. 1-2.
Later provenance: Ireland
Ireland
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ass. with Donnchadh Riabhach [unidentified]Donnchadh Riabhach ... unidentified
Entry reserved for but not yet available from the subject index.

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See the note on p. xxxiii, dated 20 February 1610.
Later provenance: Ireland
Ireland
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Ulster
Ulster/Cúige Uladh
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ass. with Ó Dochartaigh familyÓ Dochartaigh family
Entry reserved for but not yet available from the subject index.

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The references to Ó Dochartaigh (pp. 138, 139) suggest the possibility that “an Ó Dochartaigh Lord of Inishowen had possession of the manuscript for a time in the early seventeenth century” (Ó Cuív).
Later provenance: Ireland
Ireland
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Ulster
Ulster/Cúige Uladh
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ass. with George CarewCarew (George)
(1555–1629)
Carew (George) ... 1st earl of Totnes
English administrator and military officer at the time of the Tudor conquest of Ireland; 1st earl of Totnes (since 1626); antiquarian and author.
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George Carew obtained the manuscript, perhaps in 1611 when he visited Donegal, having been commissioned to report on the plantation of Ulster. See William and Annne O’Sullivan (1971).
Later provenance: EnglandEngland

No description available

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In 1636, the MS was donated to Oxford University.
Hands, scribes
Hands indexed:
Hand (main scribe)

According to Ó Cuív, the manuscript is largely the work of a single scribe who “wrote a clear regular hand but whose writing shows changes of pen and ink”. There is no signature or attribution and the hand remains unidentified.

Hand (assistant, occasional)

According to Ó Cuív, a second, unidentified scribe, who may have assisted the main scribe, writes “a similar regular hand which can be seen, for instance, on pp. 10.16–19.3, p. 101.16–23, p. 103.1–16, and p. 129.1–9”.

Later scribes

Ó Cuív notes that a number of later scribes have inserted additional items on spaces that were left blank by the main scribe, e.g. on pp. 48, 129, 135, 137, and 139, or on blank pages, e.g. on p. 140. Likewise, several headings to poems or additions to existing headings and marginal ascriptions are in distinct hands. Ó Cuív has tried to differentiate between some of them.

Additional hand 1 (p. 129, Eoghan Ó Siaghail)

In the middle of p. 129, an additional hand inserts a poem beg. Cúghaire do chúalamar and concludes with a signature in which the scribe identifies himself as Eóghan Carrach Ó Siaghail: Misi Eoghan Carrach O Siagail do scrib.

Eoghan Carrach Ó SiaghailÓ Siaghail (Eoghan Carrach)
Entry reserved for but not yet available from the subject index.

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Specimens (IIIF):
International Image Interoperability Framework logo.png
Additional hand 2 (pp. 139-140, Brian Ó Siaghail)

The prayers on pp. 139 and 140 are in the same hand. That on p. 139 is accompanied by a signature in which he identifies himself as Brian Ó Siaghail. The script, according to Ó Cuív, “is particularly good and each item in his hand begins with a highly decorative initial A”.

Brian Ó SiaghailÓ Siaghail (Brian)
Entry reserved for but not yet available from the subject index.

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Additional hand 3 (p. 110, Aodh Ó Siaghail) The signature of one Aodh Ó Siaghail appears in a marginal note on p. 110.
Aodh Ó SiaghailÓ Siaghail (Aodh)
Entry reserved for but not yet available from the subject index.

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Additional hand 4 (pp. 1-2)

An unidentified hand was responsible for the poem beg. Dlighidh coire cnáimh (pp. 1-2), in which Uaitéar Mac Suibhne receives thanks for lending the manuscript to the poem’s author. The reference to Mac Suibhne allows one to date the poem and the hand that wrote it to “either at the end of the sixteenth century or early in the seventeenth” (Ó Cuív).

Codicological information
Material
vellum
Dimensions
16.25 cm × 27.75 cm
“c.16–16.5 x 27.5–28 cm” (Ó Cuív).
Foliation
71 ff. (pp. 1-142)
Collation
11 gatherings.
Table of contents
Legend
Texts

Links to texts use a standardised title for the catalogue and so may or may not reflect what is in the manuscript itself, hence the square brackets. Their appearance comes in three basic varieties, which are signalled through colour coding and the use of icons, , and :

  1. - If a catalogue entry is both available and accessible, a direct link will be made. Such links are blue-ish green and marked by a bookmark icon.
  2. - When a catalogue entry does not exist yet, a desert brown link with a different icon will take you to a page on which relevant information is aggregated, such as relevant publications and other manuscript witnesses if available.
  3. - When a text has been ‘captured’, that is, a catalogue entry exists but is still awaiting publication, the same behaviour applies and a crossed eye icon is added.

The above method of differentiating between links has not been applied yet to texts or citations from texts which are included in the context of other texts, commonly verses.

Locus

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.

Sources

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.] Oxford Digital Library, Early manuscripts at Oxford University, Online: University of Oxford, 2001–present. URL: <http://image.ox.ac.uk>.
[dipl. ed.] Herbert, Máire, “Duanaire Choluim Cille i Laud 615: an téacs”, unpublished MA dissertation, NUI Galway, 1970.

Eleanor Knott mentioned in Ériu 18 (1958), p. 77, that she was preparing an edition of the collection, but did not manage to publish such a work.

Edition wanted

Many of the poems remain unedited and unpublished.

Secondary sources (select)

Ó Cuív, Brian, Catalogue of Irish language manuscripts in the Bodleian Library at Oxford and Oxford college libraries. Part 1: Descriptions, Dublin: School of Celtic Studies, DIAS, 2001.
88–100
OʼSullivan, Anne, and Máire Herbert, “The provenance of Laud Misc. 615”, Celtica 10 (1973): 174–192.
Meyer, Kuno, “The Bodleian MS. Laud 615”, Ériu 5 (1911): 7–14.

External links

Contributors
Dennis Groenewegen
Page created
June 2011, last updated: August 2023