The following Life of St Féchín of Fore is now for the first time published from the unique copy in the Phillips Library, Cheltenham, No. 9194, which is dated 1329. No other Irish Life of Féchín is now known; but in the seventeenth century Colgan had three, one taken from the Book of Imaidh in Connaught: another stylo planè vetusto et magnae fidei, but wanting the beginning and end: a third vetusto et eleganti metro, 74 distichis constante, in quorum paenè singulis singula narrantur miracula. Besides these three Irish Lives, he had a Latin Life by Augustin Magraidin, a canon regular of the monastery of Inis na Naemh in the county of Longford. This Life Colgan has printed in the Acta Sanctorum Hiberniae, Lovanii, 1645, pp. 130133. It is followed in the same work, pp. 133139, by a second Life alia Vita seu Supplementum in Colgan's own Latin, compiled from the three Irish Lives in his possession. From Colgan is derived all that Lanigan has written about St Féchín in his Ecclesiastical History of Ireland.
The following text represents the manuscript except in the following particulars: words have been divided from the article and other proclitics: the paragraphs have been numbered: marks of punctuation have been introduced: proper names have been spelt with initial capitals: contractions have been extended, the extensions being printed in italics; and lastly, eight sets of quatrains (41 in all) have been omitted, as they merely repeat what has been already told in prose.
Féchín or Féchíne corvulus was also called Mo-ecca, under which name he is commemorated in the Calendar of Oengus at Jan. 20.1 His pedigree is thus given in the Book of Leinster, p. 352, col. 7: Fechine Fabair Mac Cailchiarna, Maic Cillini, Maic Grillini nó Cillini, Maic Cail, Maic Aeda, Maic Saim, Maic Airt Chirb, Maic Niad Corb. He died, according to the Annals of Ulster and the Four Masters, in the year 664 of the Yellow Plague, a pestilence said to have been brought on the Irish by the pitiless prayers of himself and other saints. His Life now printed is noticeable as to its form for the alliterative exordium and for the repetition in verse of the narratives already told in prose.2 As to its substance, the stories of the leper, paragraphs 37, 38, and the drowned children, paragraph 43, and the incident of the water-horse, paragraphs 41, 42, will interest students of hagiology and folklore.
I will only add an alphabetical list of the rarer words in the following Life: