Texts

Dá apstol décc na hÉrenn‘The twelve apostles of Ireland’

  • prose, verse, prosimetrum
  • Irish hagiography
Middle or Early Modern Irish narrative, told in prose and verse, about St Brénainn moccu Altae (of Clonfert), who is here ranked among the Irish saints who studied under St Finnian at Clúain Eraird (Clonard), known collectively as the ‘twelve apostles of Ireland’. One day, when Finnian has convened the saints for a feast, a large magical flower from the Land of Promise (Tír Tairngire) appears to them. It ultimately falls to Brénainn to set out on a voyage to visit the land. The text goes on to relate some of the adventures of Brénainn and his companions.

Classification

Irish hagiography

Subjects

Brénainn of ClonfertBrénainn of Clonfert / Brénainn mac Findloga (d. 577) – Brénainn (Brenden; Brendan) mac Findloga, early Connacht saint, patron of Clonfert, and legendary voyager
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Brénainn of BirrBrénainn of Birr (d. 565/73) – Brendan mac Nemainn, patron saint of Birr
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Finnian of ClonardFinnian of Clonard
Entry reserved for but not yet available from the subject index.
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Sources

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.] Plummer, Charles, Bethada náem nÉrenn: Lives of Irish saints, 2 vols, vol. 1: Introduction, texts, glossary, Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1922.
CELT – edition: <link> Internet Archive: <link> Internet Archive: <link>
96–102
[tr.] Plummer, Charles, Bethada náem nÉrenn: Lives of Irish saints, 2 vols, vol. 2: Translations, notes, indexes, Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1922.
CELT – translations: <link> Internet Archive: <link> Internet Archive: <link>
93–98
[ed.] Thurneysen, Rudolf, “Eine Variante der Brendan-Legende”, Zeitschrift für celtische Philologie 10 (1915): 408–420.
CELT – edition and introduction: <link> Internet Archive: <link> Internet Archive: <link>

Secondary sources (select)

Plummer, Charles, Bethada náem nÉrenn: Lives of Irish saints, 2 vols, vol. 1: Introduction, texts, glossary, Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1922.
CELT – edition: <link> Internet Archive: <link> Internet Archive: <link>
xxiv–xxv
Mac Mathúna, Séamus, “The Irish Life of Saint Brendan: textual history, structure and date”, in: Strijbosch, Clara, and Glyn S. Burgess (eds.), The Brendan legend. Texts and versions, The Northern World 24, Leiden and Boston: Brill, 2006. 117–158.
Contributors
Dennis Groenewegen
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