verse beg. Abstalón, adba na ríg

  • Late Middle Irish
  • verse
  • Early Irish poetry
Late Middle Irish poem on the beheading of St John the Baptist by Mog Ruith.
Initial words (verse)
  • Abstalón, adba na ríg
  • Late Middle Irish
verse (primary)


Early Irish poetry


Mog RuithMog Ruith
Mug Roith, Mug Ruith
Legendary Irish magician from Munster, who was linked in Ireland to biblical and apocryphal traditions, notably as a pupil under Simon Magus and as one responsible for the beheading of John the Baptist. He appears in Irish genealogies as a descendant of Medb and her lover Fergus mac Roích and as an ancestor for Fir Maige Féine, in the area about present-day Fermoy.
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John the BaptistJohn the Baptist
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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.] Ó Cuív, Brian, “Two items from Irish apocryphal tradition”, Celtica 10 (1973): 87–113.
[id. 2.]
[ed.] [tr.] Mackinnon, Donald, “The executioner of John the Baptist”, The Celtic Review 8 (1912–1913): 168–170.
Internet Archive: <link>
The version from the Edinburgh MS
[ed.] [tr.] Mackinnon, Donald, A descriptive catalogue of Gaelic manuscripts in the Advocates' Library, Edinburgh, and elsewhere in Scotland, Edinburgh: Brown, 1912.
Internet Archive: <link> Internet Archive: <link>
76–77 Edinburgh version