The Bórama: the poetry and the hagiography in the Book of Leinster

Eyjolfsdottir, Elin Ingibjorg (2012) The Bórama: the poetry and the hagiography in the Book of Leinster. PhD thesis, University of Glasgow.

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This thesis is the first attempt at analysing the Bórama with a detailed analysis of the poetry read alongside the prose, as well as a detailed discussion on the hagiographical material found at the core of the text.

Chapter 1 examines the text, with particular attention on issues of composition, chronological order or disorder and other temporal anomalies, as well as the connection with other texts, especially those situated within the Book of Leinster (LL) manuscript. This is to address the issue of what the purpose of the text is, to support the argument that this is a compiled text, possibly by a single author or compiler, drawing on an extensive knowledge of literary works. It examines what the central focus of the text is and also illustrates Moling as the central character of the text, and crucial to the text in whole. In addition it will discuss the issue of classification, something that scholars have contended with for many years.

The poetry of the Bórama serves as the focal point of Chapter 2. There I demonstrate the various metres represented in the poetry, and cover a broad discussion on the issues the poems raise in the debate on the Bórama. It illustrates that the poems are an integral part of the text, and that without them the understanding of the text has been severely affected.

The following chapter, Chapter 3, is devoted to the numerous saints who occur in the poetry of the Bórama. In the poems, interspersed throughout the text of the Bórama, there is a great number of saints mentioned at various instances with varying purposes. The purpose of their inclusion as well as in which situation they are represented in the text is discussed extensively. Their locality and affiliations will, as far as possible, be explored in terms of their connection to Leinster or Moling.

Chapter 4 will be dedicated to the discussion of Moling, the central character of the text. It will explore how he is represented in the text of the Bórama, as compared to other texts where he is also a key figure. It will be shown that the Bórama, in LL, is a central text to his hagiographical corpus. Material concerned with Moling will also be looked at in terms of what they contribute to his legend. It will draw together the traits Moling exhibits in the extant sources and how his literary persona develops. The chapter will then conclude with the suggestion that LL was invaluable to the development of the legend of Moling.
In the final final section of the thesis I will draw together the main issues of each chapter in order to provide a conclusion and iron out any remaining issues. I will also highlight the numerous issues this thesis has raised during the course of the research undertaken and which would serve as future projects centred on the text.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Qualification Level: Doctoral
Keywords: Early Irish literature, St. Moling, hagiography
Subjects: P Language and Literature > P Philology. Linguistics
P Language and Literature > PN Literature (General) > PN0080 Criticism
Colleges/Schools: College of Arts & Humanities > School of Humanities > Celtic and Gaelic
Supervisor's Name: Clancy, Dr. Thomas O. and Ní Chonaill, Dr. Bronagh
Date of Award: 2012
Depositing User: Miss Elin I. Eyjolfsdottir
Unique ID: glathesis:2012-3717
Copyright: Copyright of this thesis is held by the author.
Date Deposited: 07 Nov 2012
Last Modified: 09 Aug 2013 12:01

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