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Ireland has an extensive and diverse literary tradition in the vernacular which far exceeds its medieval European counterparts. The origins and development of writing, including Ogham script, and the influence of Christianity on our rich manuscript tradition will be explored. Many of the early manuscripts, including the Stowe Missal, the Book of Kells, the Book of Leinster and Lebor na hUidre, are among our most important national treasures. The practical aspect of manuscript production, illumination and writing will be introduced followed by a thematic examination of some of their contents. A selection of myths and legends, in English translation, will be studied with particular emphasis on the representation of the deaths of kings, heroes and some female figures.
Note: This module will also be available in Semester 2, under the code, ID004X The Cultural Heritage of the Irish Literary Tradition.