Maghnus Ó Domhnaill

Life
?1500-1563 [Manus O’Donnell]; chief of O’Donnell’s, m. Eleanor FitzGerald, sister of lately executed Silken Thomas; perhaps a means of her gaining protection for her nephew since she left Maghnus when the boy was on the continent; Maghnus took oath of loyalty to crown; imprisoned by his son; his Life of St Colmcille [Columba] dictated to scribes, 1532, having caused scholars to translate Latin and Old Irish sources, princ. Adamnan; added local oral traditions; racy style indicates what Irish literature might have become; see Laoithe Cumainn (Cork 1925); Dánta Grádha, ed. Tomás Ó Rathile, trans. Robin Flower; also Béatha Colaim Chille, ed. and trans. A Ó Kelleher and Gertrude Schoepperle (Chicago 1918). DIW DIB

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Criticism
Brian Lacey, ed., Manus O’Donnell, The Life of Colum Cille (Dublin: Four Courts Press 1998), 240pp.

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References
Dictionary of National Biography: lord of Tyrconnel; dep-gov. of Tyrconnell, 1510; forced by quarrel with brothers to join O’Neill; chief, 1537; invaded Pale, 1539; routed and submitted, 1541; released his brothers in deference to St Leger’s wishes, 1542; attacked by son Calvagh [q.v., d.1566], 1548, who was defeated, but succeeded in 1555; built castle of Portnatrynod, where Life of St Columbkille was completed under his direction.

Henry Boylan, Dictionary of Irish Biography (Dublin: Gill & Macmillan 1988): Lord of Tír Chonaill; inaug. at Kilmacrenan, 1537; m. Eleanor; invaded the Pale with O’Neill, 1539; submitted in 1541; deposed by his son Calvagh, 1555, and released shortly after; his Life of Colmcille at his castle in Lifford written under his direction, MS completed in 1536, now in Bodleian; died at Lifford.

British Library holds Maghnus Ó Domhnaill, Vita Sancti Columbae ex ea Magnus O’Donellus Hibernice descripsit ... exerpta in latinum sermonem versa &c., [in] John Colgan, Acta Sanctorum veteris et ... Scotiae seu Hiberniae &c tom 2 (1645), fol.

Bodleian Library holds Betha Colaim chille, Life of Columcille, comp. Manus O’Donnell, in 1532, ed. and trans. from MSS Rawlinson B514, by A. Kelleher and G. Schoepperle (Illinois UP 1918), lxxvii+516pp., Intro., Glossary, Notes, Index.

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Notes
Not Manus: not to be confused with Manus O’Donnell (priest), listed in the British Library; see Corpus Astronomiae, being Manus O’Donnell’s 17th c. Irish version of the Lunario of Geronymo Cortes (1915).

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