A handlist of early medieval manuscripts (before c. AD 1000) relevant to the study of Irish book culture.

Early medieval manuscripts (before c. AD 1000) relevant to the study of Irish book culture

This preliminary handlist (still in preparation) aims to provide useful information for researchers on early Irish manuscript culture.

It is not a definitive list of Irish manuscripts, a very difficult (perhaps impossible) goal, since many details are subject to debate. The handlist does, however, aim to be reasonably comprehensive, in order to provide researchers with the broadest range of evidence, from which to form their own opinions.

List all 292 manuscripts

Manuscripts are included if they can be assigned to at least one of the following categories (with the exception of "Origin: Continent"). Click a title to browse the category.

Origin: Ireland Origin: Insular, poss. Ireland (Origin: Continent)
Irish script Irish exemplar Known Irish scribe
Insular script, poss. Irish Insular exemplar, poss. Irish
Hiberno-Latin text Irish-language content

Try searching for places (e.g. Bobbio, Laon, Reichenau, Reims, Salzburg, Soissons, St Gall), scribes (Dúngal, Eriugena, Martin), types of manuscript (binding fragment, fly-leaves, palimpsest), or text (Augustine, computus, gloss, Priscian, Psalter).

Manuscript images

The handlist provides external links to manuscript images, where available. It also makes use of IIIF services (for 148 manuscripts currently). These facilitate:

You can also compare side-by-side two or more manuscripts of your own selection using the Mirador viewer. Watch this short video for instructions:

Library locations

Sources and work in progress

The list was compiled initially from the following sources:

  • E. A. Lowe, Codices Latini Antiquiores, 12 vols (Oxford, 1934–1971), digitised and updated at Early Latin Manuscripts.
  • Bernhard Bischoff, Südostdeutschen Schreibschulen und Bibliotheken in der Karolingerzeit, 2 vols (Wiesbaden, 1940–1980).
  • Bernhard Bischoff, Katalog der festländischen Handschriften des neunten Jahrhunderts, 3 vols (Wiesbaden, 1998–2014).
  • Dagmar Bronner, Verzeichnis altirischen Glossen (Marburg, 2013) [published in PDF].
  • Foundations of Irish Culture online catalogue (c. 2014).

Content still to add (May 2021):

  • Further bibliographical information.
  • Insular manuscripts of unspecified origin from CLA and Bischoff.
  • Manuscripts for early transmission of Hiberno-Latin texts.
  • References to Donnchadh Ó Corráin, Clavis Litterarum Hibernensium, 3 vols (Turnhout, 2017).

Interface changes planned:

  • More refined search options.
  • Map showing places of origin (probably by region).
  • Various visualisations are planned, but will require some experimentation.


Data compiled and website developed by Pádraic Moran, Classics, National University of Ireland, Galway.

This is a preliminary list, still in progress. Hoping to launch a first version in summer 2021.

Please send additions, corrections, suggestions to padraic.moran@nuigalway.ie.


Sincere thanks to the following for additions, corrections and further suggestions: Jacopo Bisagni, Immo Warntjes, Brega Webb.

Munich, Clm 29410(2)
Munich, Bayerische Staatsbibliothek, Clm 29410/2 (Isidore, Etymologiae; binding fragment)
Pádraic Moran, MIrA: Manuscripts with Irish Associations, draft version (2021) <www.mira.ie/> [accessed 18 May 2022]