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Collections Spotlight – Medieval Manuscript from ‘O’Davoren’s Book’

For this week’s Collections Spotlight Galway City Museum are delighted to announce the loan of a very important medieval manuscript, an extract from the 16th century, O’Davoren’s Book.  This is now on display in the Gaelic Ireland exhibition, ‘Caomhnóirí na nGael / Keepers of the Gael‘, open for viewing on the first floor gallery. This section of O’Davoren’s Book has its permanent home in the Royal Irish Academy, Dublin.  The full volume was written in the Irish language by scribes for the Co. Clare lawyer, Donal Ó Duibhdábhoireann (O’Davoren) in the MacEgan law school at Park near Tuam, Co. Galway, between 1564 and 1570.  It is one of the earliest and most definitive medieval Irish law texts ever written.  The manuscript gives us a further glimpse of Gaelic society and culture in Ireland during this period.

Egerton showcase
Manuscript from O’Davoren’s Book on display in the ‘Caomhnóirí na nGael / Keepers of the Gael’ exhibition.  RIA MS 23 Q 6 (part of O’Davoren’s book), c. 1564 – 70

There are 19 pages in this particular section of O’Davoren’s Book which is normally housed and preserved by the Royal Irish Academy in Dublin. The two other sections of the book are distributed between the British Library in London (Egerton 88) and the Royal Library in Copenhagen (MS 261B).

Visitors to Galway City Museum now have the opportunity to view this beautiful manuscript on loan from the Royal Irish Academy.  It will remain on display until 30 September 2022 and is not to be missed!



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