De ratione temporum uel de compoto annali

  • Latin
  • prose
A collection of computistical material compiled, according to Dáibhí Ó Cróinín, in southern Ireland before 658. Its textual boundaries are not always explicitly defined in scholarly discussions. It is here regarded as at least encompassing the material corresponding to three items of the Sirmond computus (items 3-5 as numbered by Jones) and versions attested elsewhere. This includes the tract known as De divisionibus temporum.
De ratione temporum uel de compoto annali
There is no single agreed title. CODECS follows Dáibhí Ó Cróinín (1982) in adopting the title used in the prologue, De ratione temporum uel de compoto annali, which has been occasionally followed elsewhere, although it is unclear if he regards De divisionibus temporum as related. More recently, Eric Graff (2010) called it Computus hibernicus, although this title has also been used for the Munich computus (see introduction by Immo Warntjes to his 2010 edition). Since a part of the text was edited in PL 90, the text, or the relevant part, is also referred to as De computo dialogus.
ff. 62r–73v
(1) Prologue and capitula, (2) Sententiae sancti Agustini et Isidori in laude compoti, and (3) De .xiiii. diuisionibus temporum (ff. 62v–73v).
ff. 136v–139r, 139r–148v
beg. ‘Augustinus dixit de quattuor divisionibus scripture’
Ff. 136v-139r + 139r–148v (De divisionibus temporum, here beg. Diuisiones temporum quot sunt?).
ff. 21r–34v
De divisionibus temporum.
ff. 47r–61v
De divisionibus temporum.
Dijon, Bibliothèque municipale, MS 448
pp. 29–37
De divisionibus temporum.
Vatican City, Biblioteca Apostolica Vaticana, MS Urb. lat. 1650
ff. 34v–41r
De divisionibus temporum.
ff. 61r–?84v
rubric: ‘Incipit prologus de ratione temporum uel de compoti annali’
beg. ‘De numero igitur domino adiuuante pauca dicturi sumus’
The relevance of this copy has yet to be examined.
p. 1
rubric: ‘Incipit prologus sancti Augustini episcopi de numero et de qua arte processisset’
beg. ‘De numero igitur dilectissimi deo adiuvante pauca dicturi sumus’
Prologue and capitula.
  • Latin
prose (primary)



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.] Ó Cróinín, Dáibhí, “Bede’s Irish computus”, in: Dáibhí Ó Cróinín, Early Irish history and chronology, Dublin: Four Courts Press, 2003. 201–212.
[ed.] Cordoliani, Alfred, “Une encyclopédie carolingienne de comput: les Sententiae in laude compoti”, Bibliothèque de l'École des chartes 104 (1943): 237–243.
Persée: <link>
Prologue and capitula from Tours MS 334.
[ed.] Migne, Jacques-Paul (ed.), Venerabilis Bedae: anglo-saxonis presbyteri, opera omnia, t. 1, Patrologia Latina, 90, Paris, 1850.
Internet Archive: <link>, <link>
cols 647–652 Part of the text, here entitled De computo dialogus, beg. Augustinus dixit de quatuor divisionibus scripturae. direct link
[ed.] Migne, Jacques-Paul (ed.), Venerabilis Bedae: anglo-saxonis presbyteri, opera omnia, t. 1, Patrologia Latina, 90, Paris, 1850.
Internet Archive: <link>, <link>
cols 653–664 De divisionibus temporum. direct link
[ed.] Jones, Charles W., Bedae opera de temporibus, Cambridge, Mass.: Mediaeval Academy of America, 1943.
393–395 (appendix); 48–50 (discussion) Prologue and capitula.
[ed.] Monte Cassino Abbey, “[pt 2] Florilegium Casinense”, in: Monte Cassino Abbey (ed.), Bibliotheca Casinensis seu codicum manuscriptorum qui in tabulario Casinensi asservantur, 5 vols, vol. 4, Monte Cassino, 1880. 1–434 (separately numbered).
HathiTrust: <link>
Prologue and capitula from the Monte Cassino MS.
[ed.] Caillau, Armand-Benjamin, and Benjamin Saint-Yves, Operum supplementum, continens sermones ineditos extractos ex archivio Montis-Cassini et ex bibliotheca Laurentiana-Medicea Florentiae, vol. 2-3, Paris: Parent-Dasbarres, 1836–1839. – Vol. 2: <link>
257–258 Prologue and capitula from the Monte Cassino MS.

Secondary sources (select)

Graff, Eric, “The recension of two Sirmond texts: Disputatio Morini and De divisionibus temporum”, in: Immo Warntjes, and Dáibhí Ó Cróinín (eds), Computus and its cultural context in the Latin West, AD 300–1200: Proceedings of the 1st International Conference on the Science of Computus in Ireland and Europe, 5, Turnhout: Brepols, 2010. 112–142.  
This paper examines the tradition of the Sirmond computus, comparing Jones’ diagrammatic representations with new information from manuscript collations of Disputatio Morini and De diuisionibus temporum. These works represent two major components of the Sirmond compilation: the paschal letters collection and the texts used for teaching computus in the schools. By tracing their individual recensions, this paper aims to refine our understanding of the origin of these works and their places in the history of early medieval computistics.
Wallis, Faith, “‘Number mystique’ in early medieval computus texts”, in: Teun Koetsier, and Luc Bergmans (eds), Mathematics and the divine: a historical study, Amsterdam: Elsevier Science, 2005. 179–199.
Ó Cróinín, Dáibhí, “The Irish provenance of Bede’s computus”, Peritia 2 (1983): 229–247.
Ó Cróinín, Dáibhí, “A seventh-century Irish computus from the circle of Cummianus”, Proceedings of the Royal Irish Academy 82 C (1982): 405–430.  
The Letter of Cummian on the Paschal question (c. A.D. 632) has long been recognised as one of the primary historical documents of the early Irish churches. The purpose of this paper is to show that a computus in Brussels, Bibliothèque royale, MS 5413-22, is the work either of Cummian himself or of a member of his immediate circle, and therefore represents an important new witness to the state of scientific learning in seventh-century Ireland.
Jones, Charles W., Bedae pseudepigrapha: scientific writings falsely attributed to Bede, Ithaca, NY, London: Cornell University Press, Milford, 1939.
Dennis Groenewegen
Page created
February 2020, last updated: June 2023