Agents
Adomnán
  • fl. c.628–704
  • feast-day: 23 September
  • abbots, authors, Irish saints
  • Iona
abbot of Iona; author of a Life of St Columba
See also: Colum CilleColum Cille / Columba (fl. 6th century) – founder and abbot of Iona, Kells (Cenandas) and Derry (Daire).
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See also references for related subjects.
Aist, Rodney, From topography to text: the image of Jerusalem in the writings of Eucherius, Adomnán and Bede, Studia Traditionis Theologiae 30, Turnhout: Brepols, 2019. 
abstract:
A break-out study on Adomnán’s De locis sanctis and the Jerusalem pilgrim texts, From Topography to Text uses new methodological findings on the Christian topography of Jerusalem to examine the source material, religious imagination and mental maps in the related writings of Eucherius, Adomnán and Bede.

From Topography to Text: The Image of Jerusalem in the Writings of Eucherius, Adomnán and Bede uses topographical detail to examine the source material, religious imagination and the image of Jerusalem in three related Latin texts from the fifth, seventh and eighth centuries. The work introduces an original methodology for analyzing the Jerusalem pilgrim texts, defined by their core interest in the commemorative topography of the Christian holy places. By newly identifying the topographical material in Adomnán’s description of Jerusalem, the study exposes key distortions in the text, its exclusive intramural focus on the Holy Sepulchre and the eschatological image of New Jerusalem that emerges from its description of contemporary Jerusalem. The study verifies the post-Byzantine provenance of Adomnán’s topographical material, namely, the oral report of Arculf, thus redressing scholarly ambivalence regarding Adomnán’s contemporary source. The new insights into Adomnán’s De locis sanctis, including its mental map of Jerusalem, provide a template with which to analyze the text’s relationship with the writings of Eucherius and Bede. While Bede’s De locis sanctis has commonly been regarded as an epitome of Adomnán’s work, when the sequence, structure and images of the texts are compared, Eucherius not Adomnán is, for Bede, the authoritative text.
Márkus, Gilbert, “Adomnán, two saints, and the paschal controversy”, The Innes Review 68 (2017): 1–18. 
abstract:
We have long understood from Bede's testimony that Adomnán, the ninth abbot of Iona, urged his monks to adopt the relatively new 19-year paschal cycle, but they – or many of them – remained faithful to the 84-year cycle which they had inherited. There are passages in Vita sancti Columbae which show Adomnán using stories about St Columba in an attempt to deal with this situation, first of all to reduce the harm done to the community by the disagreement, urging fraternal charity; and secondly, as argued here for the first time, by using contrasting stories about two other saints, Ernéne and Fintan, to persuade his monks that Columba had prophetically foreseen the dispute over the Easter date, and that he had ‘cast his vote’, so to speak, with the saint associated with the 19-year cycle.
Ritari, Katja, Pilgrimage to heaven: eschatology and monastic spirituality in early medieval Ireland, Studia Traditionis Theologiae 23, Turnhout: Brepols, 2016. 
abstract:
This book focuses on the expectation of the Judgment and the afterlife in early medieval Irish monastic spirituality. It has been claimed that in the Early Middle Ages, Christianity became for the first time a truly otherworldly religion and in monastic spirituality this otherworldly perspective gained an especially prominent role. In this book, Dr Ritari explores the role of this eschatological expectation in various sources, including hagiography produced by the monastic familia of St Columba, the sermons of St Columbanus, the Navigatio sancti Brendani portraying St Brendan’s sea voyages, and the vision attributed to St Adomnán about Heaven and Hell. One recurrent image used by the Irish authors to portray the Christian path to Heaven is the image of peregrinatio, a life-long pilgrimage. Viewing human life in this perspective inevitably influenced the human relationship with the world making the monastic into a pilgrim who is not supposed to get attached to anything encountered on the way but to keep constantly in mind the end of the journey.
(source: Brepols)
[2] “Heavenly citizens on earth: the Irish lives of Saints Adomnán and Columba”
2.a. Irish hagiography and holiness; 2.b. The prudent saint in Betha Adamnáin; 2.c. Monastery as holy ground in Betha Coluim Cille; 2.d. Saints as heavenly people.
Ireland, Colin A., “Where was King Aldfrith of Northumbria educated? An exploration of seventh-century Insular learning”, Traditio 70 (2015): 29–73. 
abstract:
The superior learning of King Aldfrith of Northumbria (685–704) was acknowledged in both Anglo-Saxon and Gaelic contemporary sources by such renowned scholars as Bede of Wearmouth-Jarrow, Aldhelm of Malmesbury, Adomnán of Iona, Stephen of Ripon, and Alcuin of York. Both Aldhelm and Adomnán knew him personally, and texts composed by these two scholars and presented to Aldfrith help delineate the breadth of his educational background. He was educated among the Gaels, and their records described him as sapiens. By examining texts of other seventh-century Gaelic sapientes, and the comments of Aldhelm and Bede about Gaelic intellectual life and educational opportunities, we can expand our purview of the scope of his education. The nature of seventh-century schooling was peripatetic, and Aldfrith's dual heritage requires a broad search for locations. Many scholars accept Iona as the likely source of his learned background, but this essay will argue that, among other likely locations in Britain and Ireland, Bangor in Northern Ireland is best supported by surviving evidence. His benign reign is placed at the end of the first century of the Anglo-Saxon conversion, but his education benefited the kingdom of Northumbria through generations of Gaelic scholarship, as exemplified by peregrini such as Columba and Columbanus, and sapientes like Laidcenn mac Baíth, Cummíne of Clonfert, Ailerán of Clonard, Cenn Fáelad mac Ailello, and Banbán of Kildare. Aldfrith's rule ushered in a period of cultural florescence in Northumbria that saw the first hagiography and earliest illuminated manuscripts produced in Anglo-Saxon England and that culminated in the extensive library authored by Bede (d. 735).
Hoyland, Robert G., and Sarah Waidler, “Adomnán’s De locis sanctis and the seventh-century Near East”, The English Historical Review 129:539 (August, 2014): 787–807. 
abstract:
De locis sanctis is a seventh-century description of Palestine and other regions in the Near East written by Adomnán, the ninth abbot of Iona. Adomnán claimed that he obtained much of his information from a Gaulish bishop called Arculf who had travelled around the east Mediterranean lands. This meant that for a long time scholars categorised De locis sanctis as a pilgrimage account. In recent years this view has been challenged, and it has been argued that Adomnán wrote the text principally on the basis of literary sources; this has led to a downgrading or even denial of the role of Arculf. This article looks afresh at this debate and reassesses the text in three ways. Firstly, it illustrates the ways in which Adomnán blended the written and oral sources at his disposal. Secondly, it re-examines the references in the work to the Arabs and Islam from an Islamicist’s perspective, and considers what might have been their significance to Adomnán. Finally, the article reconsiders the motives behind the structure and purpose of the problematic Book III of De locis sanctis. Rather than seeing De locis sanctis as either a pilgrim’s testimony or a work created solely by Adomnán in his library, this article presents the text as a complex narrative shaped by Adomnán on the basis of written and oral sources, the latter provided by a recent traveller to the Near East.
(source: Publisher)
Enright, Michael J., Prophecy and kingship in Adomnán's 'Life of Saint Columba', Dublin: Four Courts Press, 2013. 
abstract:
This book offers a new interpretation of Adomnán’s 'Life of Saint Columba', a crucial source for the study of early Irish and north British history. Whereas previous scholars have assumed that this vita was that of a fairly typical Irish saint, Michael J. Enright shows that Adomnán intended to portray Columba as an authentic Old Testament-style prophet, one superior to any other leader because he had been divinely chosen and commissioned to impose God’s will on the British Isles. His purposes were not refutable by any other power since, like Moses, Samuel and Elijah, he had been made into God’s own singular herald. His commission was to reform kingship by selecting, anointing and guiding rulers according to Old Testament precedent. Like a scriptural prophet, moreover, he taught his followers to be prophets so as to ensure the continuity of his mission. In order to advance this regime of the prophet-guided ruler, God also endowed Columba with the special privilege of giving victory in battle to those who supported him. Adomnán intended to show that no other leader or institution could ever legitimately defy Columba, whose spirit actively lived on in his community.
(source: Four Courts Press)
Woods, David, “Adomnán, plague and the Easter controversy”, Anglo-Saxon England 40 (2011): 1–13. 
abstract:
Adomnán's description (Vita Columbae II.46) of how the intercession of St. Columba preserved the Picts and the Irish in Britain alone among the peoples of western Europe against two great epidemics of bubonic plague is a coded defence of their use of the traditional Irish 84-year Easter table against the Dionysian Easter table as used throughout the rest of western Europe. His implication is that God sent the plagues to punish those who used the Dionysian table. Hence Adomnán still adhered to the 84-year table by the time that he composed the Vita Columbae c. 697. It probably took a third epidemic 700–c. 702 to persuade Adomnán that his interpretation of the earlier epidemics was incorrect, so that Bede (HE V.15) is correct to date his conversion to the Dionysian table to a third visit to Northumbria c. 702.
Ritari, Katja, “Heavenly apparitions and heavenly life in Adomnán’s Vita Columbae”, in: Aist, Rodney, Thomas Owen Clancy, Thomas O'Loughlin, and Jonathan M. Wooding (eds), Adomnán of Iona: theologian, lawmaker, peacemaker, Dublin: Four Courts Press, 2010. 274–288.
MacDonald, Aidan, “Adomnán’s Vita Columbae and the early churches of Tiree”, in: Aist, Rodney, Thomas Owen Clancy, Thomas O'Loughlin, and Jonathan M. Wooding (eds), Adomnán of Iona: theologian, lawmaker, peacemaker, Dublin: Four Courts Press, 2010. 219–236.
Fraser, James E., “Adomnán and the morality of war”, in: Aist, Rodney, Thomas Owen Clancy, Thomas O'Loughlin, and Jonathan M. Wooding (eds), Adomnán of Iona: theologian, lawmaker, peacemaker, Dublin: Four Courts Press, 2010. 95–111.
Sharman, Stephen, “Visions of divine light in the writings of Adomnán and Bede”, in: Aist, Rodney, Thomas Owen Clancy, Thomas O'Loughlin, and Jonathan M. Wooding (eds), Adomnán of Iona: theologian, lawmaker, peacemaker, Dublin: Four Courts Press, 2010. 289–302.
Márkus, Gilbert, “Adiutor laborantium - a poem by Adomnán?”, in: Aist, Rodney, Thomas Owen Clancy, Thomas O'Loughlin, and Jonathan M. Wooding (eds), Adomnán of Iona: theologian, lawmaker, peacemaker, Dublin: Four Courts Press, 2010. 145–161.
Aist, Rodney, Thomas Owen Clancy, Thomas O'Loughlin, and Jonathan M. Wooding (eds), Adomnán of Iona: theologian, lawmaker, peacemaker, Dublin: Four Courts Press, 2010.
Yorke, Barbara, “Adomnán at the court of King Aldfrith”, in: Aist, Rodney, Thomas Owen Clancy, Thomas O'Loughlin, and Jonathan M. Wooding (eds), Adomnán of Iona: theologian, lawmaker, peacemaker, Dublin: Four Courts Press, 2010. 36–50.
Stancliffe, Clare E., “‘Charity with peace’: Adomnán and the Easter question”, in: Aist, Rodney, Thomas Owen Clancy, Thomas O'Loughlin, and Jonathan M. Wooding (eds), Adomnán of Iona: theologian, lawmaker, peacemaker, Dublin: Four Courts Press, 2010. 51–68.
O'Reilly, Jennifer L., “Adomnán and the art of teaching spiritual sons”, in: Aist, Rodney, Thomas Owen Clancy, Thomas O'Loughlin, and Jonathan M. Wooding (eds), Adomnán of Iona: theologian, lawmaker, peacemaker, Dublin: Four Courts Press, 2010. 69–94.
Charles-Edwards, T. M., “The structure and purpose of Adomnán’s Vita Columbae”, in: Aist, Rodney, Thomas Owen Clancy, Thomas O'Loughlin, and Jonathan M. Wooding (eds), Adomnán of Iona: theologian, lawmaker, peacemaker, Dublin: Four Courts Press, 2010. 205–218.
Tipp, Dan, and Jonathan M. Wooding, “Adomnán’s voyaging saint: the cult of Cormac Ua Liatháin”, in: Aist, Rodney, Thomas Owen Clancy, Thomas O'Loughlin, and Jonathan M. Wooding (eds), Adomnán of Iona: theologian, lawmaker, peacemaker, Dublin: Four Courts Press, 2010. 237–252.
O'Sullivan, Tomás, “The anti-Pelagian motif of the ‘naturally good’ pagan in Adomnán’s Vita Columbae”, in: Aist, Rodney, Thomas Owen Clancy, Thomas O'Loughlin, and Jonathan M. Wooding (eds), Adomnán of Iona: theologian, lawmaker, peacemaker, Dublin: Four Courts Press, 2010. 253–273.
Clancy, Thomas Owen, “Adomnán in medieval Gaelic literary tradition”, in: Aist, Rodney, Thomas Owen Clancy, Thomas O'Loughlin, and Jonathan M. Wooding (eds), Adomnán of Iona: theologian, lawmaker, peacemaker, Dublin: Four Courts Press, 2010. 112–122.
O'Loughlin, Thomas, Adomnán and the Holy Places: the perceptions of an Insular monk on the locations of the biblical drama, London, New York: Clark, 2007.
Woods, David, “Arculf’s luggage: the sources for Adomnán’s De locis sanctis”, Ériu 52 (2002): 25–52. 
abstract:
Adomnán's information concerning the situation and foundation of Constantinople derives from a Latin translation of an anonymous Byzantine life of Constantine I. His information concerning seventh-century Palestine derives from a poor translation of a collection of miracle-stories. He discovered excerpts from these texts in a florilegium attributed to a source whose name he misread as Arculf. Arnulf, as he should be called, had collected these texts in support of a collection of relics obtained at Constantinople. He lost the relics in a storm in the English Channel, but made land with these texts.
Carey, John, “Varieties of supernatural contact in the Life of Adomnán”, in: Carey, John, Máire Herbert, and Pádraig Ó Riain (eds.), Studies in Irish hagiography: saints and scholars, Dublin: Four Courts Press, 2001. 49–62.
O'Loughlin, Thomas, “The tombs of the saints: their significance for Adomnán”, in: Carey, John, Máire Herbert, and Pádraig Ó Riain (eds.), Studies in Irish hagiography: saints and scholars, Dublin: Four Courts Press, 2001. 1–14.
O'Loughlin, Thomas, “Adomnán: a man of many parts”, in: O'Loughlin, Thomas [ed.], Adomnán at Birr, AD 697. Essays in commemoration of the Law of the Innocents, Dublin: Four Courts Press, 2001. 41–51.
Borsje, Jacqueline, “Women in Columba's Life, as seen through the eyes of his biographer Adomnán”, in: Korte, Anne-Marie [ed.], Women and miracle-stories. A multidisciplinary exploration, Numen Book Series, Studies in the History of Religions 88, Leiden, Boston, Cologne: E. J. Brill, 2001. 87–122.
Stalmans, Nathalie, “La place de la maladie dans la pensée d'Adomnán. Réalité et symbole”, in: Carey, John, John T. Koch, and Pierre-Yves Lambert (eds.), Ildánach Ildírech. A festschrift for Proinsias Mac Cana, Celtic Studies Publications 4, Andover and Aberystwyth: Celtic Studies Publications, 1999. 245–254.
O'Loughlin, Thomas, “The view from Iona: Adomnán’s mental maps”, Peritia 10 (1996): 98–122. 
abstract:
Adomnán wrote a geographical work. How did he view the world around which he imagined people travelling. This raises questions about the state of contemporary geographical knowledge and whether we can assume that he shares our notions of time and space. In fact, both are different. Here mental maps are used to allow him to tell us about his world rather than about the past of ours. We can use a series to reconstruct this world: (i) a T–O map to explain the actual sequence of movement in De locis sanctis and why Arculf’s arrival in Iona did not raise any questions for him; (ii) a Square–V map of the races of mankind; (iii) a map of circles based on Luke and Acts to explain the division of De locis sanctis into books; (iv) a map of scriptural signs which would explain the temporal inconsistencies in the description of places; and (v) an eschatological map which shows the book beginning at the gates of heaven and ending at the gates of hell.
Sayers, William, “Spiritual navigation in the western sea: Sturlunga saga and Adomnán’s Hinba”, Scripta Islandica 44 (1993): 30–42.
Werner, Martin, “The cross-carpet page in the Book of Durrow: the cult of the True Cross, Adomnan, and Iona”, The Art Bulletin 72 (1990): 174–223.
Picard, Jean-Michel, “The Bible used by Adomnán”, in: Ní Chatháin, Próinséas, and Michael Richter (eds.), Irland und die Christenheit: Bibelstudien und Mission. Ireland and Christendom: the Bible and the missions, Veröffentlichungen des Europa Zentrums Tübingen. Kulturwissenschaftliche Reihe, Stuttgart: Klett-Cotta, 1987. 245–257.
Picard, Jean-Michel, “Bede, Adomnán and the writing of history”, Peritia 3 (1984): 50–70.
Manitius, Max, Geschichte der lateinischen Literatur des Mittelalters, 3 vols, vol. 1: Von Justinian bis zur Mitte des zehnten Jahrhunderts, Munich: Beck, 1911.
Digital.ub.uni-duesseldorf.de: <link>
236   [39] “Adamnan von Hy”