An Irish Astronomical Tract

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An Irish Astronomical Tract, medieval Irish text and manuscript.


An Irish Astronomical Tract is the title given to a medieval Irish text, created in the first half of the 14th century. It was written in Early Modern Irish, and is a translation of De Scientia Motus Orbis by Masha'allah ibn Atharī (c.740–815 AD).

The name of its scribe and place of composition is unknown.

See also[edit]

External links[edit]


MS Sources[edit]

  • Stowe, B II 1; Royal Irish Academy, Dublin. Electronically available, with cataloguing information, on the ISOS Project (
  • Z 2. 2. 1. (olim V. 3. 1. 38); Marsh's Library, Dublin.
  • 23 F 13; Royal Irish Academy, Dublin.
  • British Library L 3. B. 32 (transcript of 'De Scientia Motus Orbis').


  • J. J. O'Farrelly, Irish Cosmographical Tract: Transcription of the Irish Text with contractions retained [From Stowe B II 1]. Unpublished handwritten manuscript, MS 3A7, 852, Royal Irish Academy Library, 1893.
  • J. J. O'Farrelly, Irish Cosmographical Tract Transcription of the Irish Text, with contractions in Irish extended with reference to Marsh copy and to RIA copy 2. Unpublished handwritten manuscript, MS 3A10, 855, Royal Irish Academy Library, 1893.
  • J. E. Gore, 'An Irish Astronomical Tract', in: 'Knowledge & Scientific News'; February, 1909.
  • Maura Power, Chapters 8, 39, and a portion of chapter 9, with another small fragment of the text, were published with the same English translation of the 1914 edition in Celtia, a pan-Celtic monthly magazine, 11 (London, The Celtic Association) 54-6; 90-92; 101-03.
  • Tomás Ó Concheanainn, The Scribe of the Irish Astronomical Tract in the Royal Irish Academy, B II 1, Celtica 11 (1976) 158-67.
  • Mario Esposito, An Unpublished Astronomical Treatise by the Irish Monk Dicuil, Dublin, Hodges/Figgis 1907. PRIA vol. 26, Section C, no. 15, 378-446. Reprinted in: Mario Esposito, Irish Books and Learning in Mediaeval Europe, Ch. 7, Variorum 1990. (Edited from MS 4.4.3, [= Mangart no. 386], Bibliothèque Municipale de Valenciennes, ff. 66-118.)
  • Mario Esposito (ed.), A Ninth-Century Astronomical Treatise, in Modern Philology 18, Chicago 1920-21, 177-188. Reprinted in Mario Esposito, Irish Books and Learning in Mediaeval Europe, Ch. 8, Variorum 1990. (Contains fresh collation of printed text with MS 4.4.3, Bibliothèque Municipale de Valenciennes, ff. 66-118, and emendations).
  • Bartholomei Anglici, De proprietatibus rerum liber octavus, Leagan Gaeilge ó thús na 15ú aoise. Ed. by Gearóid Mac Niocaill, Celtica 8 (1968) 201-42; 9 (1971) 266-315.
  • An Irish Corpus Astronomiae (being Manus O'Donnell's seventeenth century version of the Lunario of Geronymo Cortès), ed. by F. W. O'Connell and R. M. Henry, London 1915.
  • John A. Williams, The Irish Astronomical Tract: a case study of scientific terminology in 14th century Irish, M. Phil. Thesis, University of Sydney, 2002. Contains a revised translation. Electronically available at: