Lebor gabála Érenn 2B. The Antediluvians

  • prose
  • Lebor gabála Érenn
An account of the first people to set foot on Ireland before the Deluge, namely Banba, later followed by Partholón, or three certain fishermen from Spain, although they navigated the waters of Ireland without setting foot on land.
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Lebor gabála Érenn
Lebor gabála Érenn
id. 4019


(time-frame ass. with Irish legendary history)
Banba is a designation for Ireland as a whole, though  “[o]rig. name of north Leinster = mag mBreg, hence from British compound *Banno-Magos [...] or from *ban-w-yā as a theonym” (eDIL s.v. Banba), as well as an eponymous character or personification who is said to have given her name to the island; sometimes mentioned along with two sisters, Ériu and Fódla, who did likewise.
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Partholón mac Sera (son of Sera)
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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.] Macalister, R. A. Stewart [ed.], Lebor gabála Érenn: The book of the taking of Ireland, 5 vols, vol. 2, Irish Texts Society, 35, Dublin: Irish Texts Society, 1933.  

Concerning this section in the recensions which he calls R1, Min, R2 and R3, Macalister writes that it “has suffered modification in translation from the original Latin and in subsequent transmission [...] and in consequence two versions R1 and R2, differing widely, have come into being. [...] The version [of this section] in Min need not detain us: it does not differ essentially from R1. We turn now to R3, which in this section is very clumsy and awkward patchwork, based upon the two earlier versions, with the addition of some extraneous matter. [...] The close relationship of his [the compiler's] MS of R1 (*Q), to F, observed in the preceding section is here maintained.”

Internet Archive: <link>
176–179 (F, nos. 167–168); 196–199 (c, 187–188)

Secondary sources (select)

Scowcroft, R. Mark, “Leabhar Gabhála. Part I: the growth of the text”, Ériu 38 (1987): 79–140.  
98, 104
Dennis Groenewegen
Page created
January 2013, last updated: February 2022