Ùrnaighean nan Gàidheal: text and context of Gaelic prayer in South Uist, 1880-1960

Reddy, Kathleen (2018) Ùrnaighean nan Gàidheal: text and context of Gaelic prayer in South Uist, 1880-1960. MRes thesis, University of Glasgow.

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Abstract

This study explores the Gaelic folk prayer tradition in South Uist in the Western Isles of Scotland over the period of the late nineteenth century to the mid-twentieth century, and in particular the question of what functions Gaelic folk prayers had for Catholic Gaels and their communities in this time period, as well as the impact that devotional literature had on the tradition during this period. This study places the folk prayer tradition of late nineteenth and twentieth-century South Uist within a local Highland and national Scottish cultural context, examining the role of prominent folklore collectors in the collection and publication of folk prayers from South Uist, such as the work of Fr Allan MacDonald (“Maighstir Ailein”), and the publication of Carmina Gadelica by Alexander Carmichael.

In particular, the interplay between printed devotional resources and the oral prayer tradition is highlighted in this study. A review of Gaelic language prayer manuals available during this period, such as Iùl a’ Chrìostaidh is included, as well as an exploration of the influence of the Catholic “Devotional Revolution” and the Scottish “Celtic Revival” on the publication of Gaelic prayers. Included is an in-depth examination of multiple versions of the Gaelic folk prayer, An t-Altachadh Laighe (“The Lying Down Prayer”), gleaned from a range of printed and oral sources, as well as original transcriptions of archival interviews, including folk prayers, from tradition-bearers from South Uist and Barra, conducted by the School of Scottish Studies in the mid-twentieth century.

Item Type: Thesis (MRes)
Qualification Level: Masters
Additional Information: Funding from the following bodies is gratefully acknowleged: Government of Nova Scotia’s Gaelic Affairs, The Scots of Halifax, The Sisters of Saint Martha, An Comunn Gàidhealach Ameireaganach, Catherine McCaig’s Trust, Urras Brosnachaidh na Gàidhlig, University of Glasgow School of Humanities, and Celtic and Gaelic at the University of Glasgow (Duncan and Morag MacLean Studentship).
Keywords: Gaelic, Gàidhlig, South Uist, Catholicism, Western Isles, Scotland, Highlands, folklore, prayer, folk prayer, oral tradition, devotional literature, Fr Allan MacDonald, Carmina Gadelica, Alexander Carmichael, Iùl a' Chrìostaidh, devotional revolution, Celtic Revival, School of Scottish Studies.
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BR Christianity
Colleges/Schools: College of Arts > School of Humanities > Celtic and Gaelic
Supervisor's Name: Innes, Dr. Sìm
Date of Award: 2018
Depositing User: Miss Kathleen Reddy
Unique ID: glathesis:2018-9144
Copyright: Copyright of this thesis is held by the author.
Date Deposited: 04 Jun 2018 15:51
Last Modified: 05 Jul 2018 07:24
URI: http://theses.gla.ac.uk/id/eprint/9144

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