The religious mind of Maynooth's Gaelic manuscripts


Ó Dúshláine, Tadhg (1995) The religious mind of Maynooth's Gaelic manuscripts. In: Maynooth Library Treasures: From the collections of Saint Patrick's College. Royal Irish Academy, pp. 91-111. ISBN 1874045305

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Abstract

By a happy coincidence the byline for Maynooth College's bicentenary celebrations, 'for faith and fatherland', is a precise description of that last great flowering of native spirituality during the Baroque Age (1600-1700). James Fitzmaurice Fitzgerald, leader of the 1579 rebellion, insisted that 'zeal for God's honour and their own country' was the rebels' prime motivation, just as Hugh O'Neill declared in 1615 that all his acts of defiance against the crown were 'in defence of the Catholic faith and of his fatherland'. From the defeat at Kinsale in 1601 to the Famine of1847-8, the old Gaelic order suffered political, military, social and economic disaster. Paradoxically, and perhaps consequentially, no other period produced such a volume of native poetry and prose, of such literary and intellectual merit. The native bardic tradition, isolated for the most part from the mainstream of the medieval Continental tradition by the conservatism of the bardic caste for some 500 years, from the coming of the Normans to the defeat at Kinsale, rose to the post-Tridentine challenge and developed a powerful Gaelic recusant literature, through its own Continental college movement in the first instance and later through the influence of returned missionaries, who brought the new literary themes and techniques home with them.

Item Type: Book Section
Keywords: Maynooth; St. Patrick's College; Library; Treasures; religious minds; gaelic manuscripts;
Academic Unit: University Library
Item ID: 10214
Depositing User: Tadhg O Dushlaine
Date Deposited: 12 Nov 2018 15:58
Publisher: Royal Irish Academy
Refereed: Yes
URI:

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