First Gaelic manuscript in the Advocates Library

In 1696, a copy of Geoffrey Keating's work on the history of Ireland, 'Forus feasa ar Eirinn', was gifted to the Advocates Library by Patrick Logan.

Logan was a schoolmaster in Lurgan, Ireland. He was originally from Scotland and had followed with interest a recent controversy concerning early Scottish history.

One of the authors involved was Sir George Mackenzie of Rosehaugh, founder of the Advocates Library. He had died in 1691, but Logan hoped that somebody in his circle would continue the historical argument.

Patriotically minded, and hoping to assist the Scottish side of the controversy, he had commissioned and sent the manuscript at his own expense.

Ancient Irish records

Keating's history drew on ancient Irish records that were inaccessible to most. It was recognised as a valuable work, and Logan thought that language should be no obstacle to the Advocates:

'To understand the tongue these that have the Irish language will explain it', he wrote.

Another manuscript copy of the work, made in 1647, went to the Advocates Library in 1850.

 

National Library of Scotland reference number: Adv.MS.33.4.11

 

Gaelic manuscripts page

 



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