Corpus of Electronic Texts Edition
Annals of the Four Masters (Author: Unknown)

Annal M913


The Age of Christ, 913.


The thirty-seventh year of Flann.


Scannlan, Abbot and Bishop of Tamhlacht, died.


Scannlan, airchinneach of Congbhail-Glinne-Suilighe, died.


The plundering of Corcach, Lis-mor, and Achadh-bo,


by strangers.


Ruarc, son of Maelbrighde, lord of Muscraighe-thire, died.


The harassing of Flann Sinna by his sons, namely, Donnchadh and Conchobhar; and Meath was plundered by them as far as Loch Ribh. A hosting of the North was made by Niall, son of Aedh, King of Aileach, and, marching into Meath, he obtained the pledges of Donnchadh and Conchobhar, that they would obey their father; and he left peace between Meath and Breagh.


Great and frequent reinforcements of foreigners arrived in Loch-Dachaech; and the lay districts and churches of Munster were constantly plundered by them.


Lenae, son of Catharnach, lord of Corca-Bhaiscinn, died.

Annal M914


The Age of Christ, 914.


Aedh, son of Ailell, Abbot of Cluain-fearta-Brenainn;


Maenach, son of Dailigein, Abbot of Achadh-bo-Cainnigh;


Maelbairrfinn, priest of Cluain-mic-Nois;


and Martin, Abbotof Ros-Commain, died.


Cobhflaith, daughter of Duibhduin, Abbess of Cill-dara, died.


Fogartach, son of Tolarg, lord of South Breagh; and Cathalan, son of Finnsneachta, heir apparent of Leinster, died.


Gebhennach, son of Aedh, lord of Ui-Fidhgeinte, was slain by the Norsemen.


Bran, son of Echtighearn, Tanist of Ui-Ceinnsealaigh, was slain by the Norsemen, and by Diarmaid, son of Cearbhall, lord of Osraighe.


Ard-Macha was burned.


After Flann, the son of Maelsechlainn, had been thirty-eight years in the sovereignty of Ireland, he died at Tailltin. It was in lamentation of Flann the following verses were composed:

    1. Flann, the fair of Freamhain, better than all children, monarch of Ireland, fierce his valour;
      It was he that ruled our people, until placed beneath the earth's heavy surface.
      Flowing flood of great wealth, pure carbuncle of beauteous form,
      Fine-shaped hero who subdued all, chief of the men of Fail of august mien,
      Pillar of dignity over every head, fair chief of valour, caster of the spears,
      Sun-flash, noble, pleasant, head of the men of hospitality is Flann.



Ainle, son of Cathan, lord of Uaithne-Cliach, was put to death by the foreigners of Loch Dachaech.


The foreigners of Loch Dachaech still continued to plunder Munster and Leinster.

Annal M915


The Age of Christ, 915.


The first year of Niall Glundubh, son of Aedh Finnliath, over Ireland in sovereignty.


Maelgiric, Abbot of Cill-achaidh, died.


The fair of Tailltin was renewed by Niall.


Sitric, grandson of Imhar, with his fleet, took up at Ceann-fuait, in the east of Leinster.Raghnall, grandson of Imhar, with another fleet, went to the foreigners of Loch Dachaech.


A slaughter was made of the foreigners by the Munstermen. Another slaughter was made of the foreigners by the Eoghanachta, and by the Ciarraighi.


The army of the Ui-Neill of the South and North was led by Niall, son of Aedh, King of Ireland, to the men of Munster, to wage war with the foreigners. He pitched his camp at Tobar-Glethrach, in Magh-Feimhin, on the 22nd of August. The foreigners went into the territory on the same day. The Irish attacked them the third hour before mid-day, so that one thousand one hundred men were slain between them; but more of the foreigners fell, and they were defeated. There fell here in the heat of the conflict the chief of Carraig-Brachaidhe,and Maelfinnen, son of Donnagan, chief of Ui-Cearnaigh; Fearghal, son of Muirigen, chief of Ui-Creamhthainn; and others besides them. Reinforcements set out from the fortress of the foreigners to relieve their people. The Irish returned back to their camp before the arrival of the last host, i.e. before the arrival of Raghnall, king of the black foreigners, who had an army of foreigners with him. Niall set out with a small force against the foreigners, so that God prevented their slaughter through him. Niall after this remained twenty nights encamped against the foreigners. He requested of the Leinstermen to remain in siege against the foreigners. This they did, and continued the siege until Sitric, the grandson of Imhar, and the foreigners, gave the battle of Ceannfuait to the Leinstermen, wherein six hundred were slain about the lords of Leinster, together


with the king Ugaire, son of Ailell. These are the names of some of their chiefs: Maelmordha, son of Muireagan, lord of Airther-Life; Mughron, son of Cinneidigh, lord of the three Comainns and of Laighis; Cinaedh, son of Tuathal, lord of Ui-Feineachlais; and many other chieftains, with the arch-bishop Maelmaedhog, son of Diarmaid, who was one of the Ui-Conannla, Abbot of Gleann-Uisean, a distinguished scribe, anchorite, and an adept in the Latin learning and the Scotic language. It was concerning the battle of Ceann-Fuaid the following lines were composed:
    1. The expedition of the Leinstermen of many youths, upon a very fine road, royal the march;
      Scarcely heard they the sound of the road; they received death at Ceann-Fuaid.
      The chiefs of Liphe of broad deeds waged a battle with a sacred shrine.
      There were cut off five hundred heads in the valley over Tigh-Moling.
      Great its renown in every thing, rightly indeed, for celebrated is the spot,
      Over the plain with thousands of hundreds, Leinster sends its troops of youths.


The plundering of Cill-dara by the foreigners of Ceann-Fuaid.


Maelruanaidh, son of Niall, Tanist of the Deisi, was slain by Cormac, son of Mothla, lord of the Deisi.


Culothair, son of Matudhan, chief of Ui-Ceallaigh-Cualann, died.


Annal M916


The Age of Christ, 916.


The second year of Niall.


Egnech, successor of Enda of Ara, bishop and anchorite, died.


Fearadhach, Abbot of Inis-bo-finne;


Maeleoin, Abbot of Ros-Cre;


and Ceallachan Ua Daint, Abbot of Tuaim-inbhir, died.


Muireann, daughter of Suart, Abbess of Cill-dara, died on the 26th of May.


Daniel of Cluain-Coirpthe, a celebrated historian, died.


Eithne, daughter of Aedh, son of Niall, queen of the men of Breagh, died on the festival day of St. Martin.


Mor, daughter of Cearbhall, son of Dunghal, Queen of South Leinster, died after a good life.


Tighearnach Ua Cleirigh, lord of Aidhne, died.


Ceat, son of Flaithbheartach, lord of Corca-Modhruadh, died.


Cill-dara was plundered by the foreigners of Athcliath.


The plundering of Leithghlinn by the foreigners, where Maelpadraig, a priest and anchorite, and Mongan, anchorite, and many others along with them, were slain.


Oitir and the foreigners went from Loch Dachaech to Alba; and Constantine, the son of Aedh, gave them battle, and Oitir was slain, with a slaughter of the foreigners along with him.

Annal M917


The Age of Christ, 917.


Domhnall, son of Diarmaid, Abbot of Gleann-Uisean,


and Maelcoe, Abbot of Oendruim, died.


Innreachtach, Abbot of Trefoit, was slain in his own abbatical house.


Maelene, son of Maelbrighde, Abbot of Lann-Eala and Connor, and the glory of Ireland, died.


Duibhghilla, son of Lachtnan, lord of Teathbha, was slain.


Cormac, son of Mothla, lord of the Deisi, died.


The battle of Ath-cliath (i.e. of Cill-Mosamhog, by the side of Ath-cliath) was gained over the Irish, by Imhar and Sitric Gale, on the 17th of October, in which were slain Niall Glundubh, son of Aedh Finnliath, King of Ireland, after he had been three years in the sovereignty; Conchobhar


Ua Maeleachlainn, heir apparent to the sovereignty of Ireland; Aedh, son of Eochagan, King of Ulidia; Maelmithidh, son of Flannagan, lord of Breagh; Maelcraeibhe Ua Duibhsinaich, lord of Oirghialla; Maelcraeibhe, son of Doilghen, lord of Tortan; Ceallach, son of Fogartach, lord of South Breagh; Cromman, son of Cinneitich; and many other noblemen and plebeians, who are not enumerated, along with the king. Of this battle was said:
    1. Fierce and hard was the Wednesday
      On which hosts were strewn under the feet of shields:
      It shall be called, till Judgment's day,
      The destructive morning of Ath-cliath,
      On which fell Niall, the noble hero;
      Conchobhar, chief of fierce valour;
      Aedh, son of valiant Eochaidh of Ulidia;
      Maelmithidh of the proud, lofty dignity.
      Many a countenance of well-known Gaeidhil,
      Many a chief of grey-haired heroes,
      Of the sons of queens and kings,
      Were slain at Ath-cliath of swords.
      The strength of a brave lord was subdued.
      Alas that he was deceived in the strength of an army,
      There would otherwise be no moan upon the strand.
      Fierce was the hard Wednesday!

In lamentation of Niall was moreover said:

    1. Sorrowful this day is sacred Ireland,
      Without a valiant chief of hostage reign;
      It is to see the heavens without a sun
      To view Magh-Neill without Niall.
      There is no cheerfulness in the happiness of men;
      There is no peace or joy among the hosts;
      No fair can be celebrated
      Since the sorrow of sorrow died.


      This is a pity, O beloved Magh-Breagh,
      Country of beautiful face,
      Thou hast parted with thy lordly king,
      Thou hast lost Niall the wounding hero.
      Where is the chief of the western world?
      Where the sun of every clash of arms?
      The place of great Niall of Cnucha
      Has been changed, ye great wretches!

Niall said this before the battle:

    1. Whoever wishes for a speckled boss, and a sword of sore-inflicting wounds,
      And a green javelin for wounding wretches, let him go early in the morning to Ath-cliath.

Celedabhaill, son of Scannall, successor of Comhghall, and confessor of Niall Glundubh, was he who had requested of Niall to come to this battle; and it was he that gave the viaticum to Niall, after having refused to give him a horse to carry him from the battle. Gormlaith, daughter of Flann, said:

    1. Evil to me the compliment of the two foreigners who slew Niall and Cearbhall;
      Cearbhall was slain by Hulb, a great deed; Niall Glundubh by Amhlaeibh.


Easter day fell on the 25th of April, and little Easter in the summer. This happened after three hundred and sixty-five years.

    1. Easter in summer, marching of armies during three fully accomplished years,
      There was a red slaughter of the Gaelidhil in every path, through-out the points of fair great Fail along with Niall.



Comhghall said:

    1. The festival of Coemhan Liath in Lent, denotes a year of storms,
      Five days of spring after Easter, Little Easter to be in summer.


The plundering of Fearna and Teach-Munna by the foreigners.

Annal M918


The Age of Christ, 918.


The first year of Donnchadh, son of Flann Sinna, in sovereignty over Ireland.


Finchar, Bishop of Daimhliag;


Cormac, son of Cuilennan, Bishop of Lis-mor, and lord of the Deisi Mumhan;


Loingseach, Bishop of Cluain-mic-Nois;


Maelmaire, Abbot of Ard-Breacain;


Ciaran, Abbot of Devenish


Scannlan, son of Gorman, wise man, excellent scribe, and Abbot of Ros-Cre;


and Meraighe of Cluainmor-Maedhog, died.


A great flood in this year, so that the water reached the Abbot's Fort of Cluain-mic-Nois, and to the causeway of the Monument of the Three Crosses.


Ceanannus was plundered by the foreigners, and the Daimhliag was demolished.


A great slaughter was made of the Ui-Maine at Grian.


A battle was gained in Cianachta-Breagh (i.e. at Tigh-mic-nEathach) by Donnchadh, son of Flann, son of Maelseachlainn, over the foreigners, wherein a countless number of the foreigners was slain; indeed in this battle revenge was had of them for the battle of Ath-cliath, for there fell of the nobles of the Norsemen here as many as had fallen of the nobles and plebeians of the Irish in the battle of Ath-cliath. Muircheartach, son of Tighearnan, i.e. heir apparent of Breifne, was wounded in the battle of Cianachta, and he afterwards died of his wounds.


Murchadh, son of Flann, lord of Corca-Bhaiscinn, died.




son of Lonan, the Virgil of the race of Scota, the best poet that was in Ireland in his time, was treacherously slain by the sons of Corrbuidhe, who were of the Ui-Fothaidh, at Loch Dachaech, in Deisi-Mumhan.

Annal M919


The Age of Christ, 919.


The second year of Donnchadh.


Ciaran, Bishop of Tolan,


and Ruman, son of Cathasach, Bishop of Cluain-Iraird, died. It was for him this quatrain was composed:

    1. Shrine of wisdom illustrious, acute, a man of virgin purity,
      By the hosts of people assembled was he loved, Ruman, son of Cathasach the amiable.


Maenach, son of Siadhal, Abbot of Beannchair, and the best scribe of all the Irish race, died.


Cairbre, son of Fearadhach, head of the piety of Leinster, successor of Diarmaid, son of Aedh Roin, airchinneach of Tigh-Mochua, and an anchorite, died, after a good life, at a very advanced age;


and Fearghal, son of Maelmordha, Abbot of Saighir, died. Of them was said:

    1. It was not a year without events; premature died the Abbot of lasting Beannchair,
      And the successor of Diarmaid, Cairbre, the gifted above all good pillar.
      The Abbot of Saighir with multitudes; Fearghal, man of gentle exactions;
      Domhnall, a scion all-good; a plague among the Gaeidhil.
      I have not enumerated, I shall not enumerate, because I am sorrowful,
      What misfortunes came upon Ireland in this year.


Domhnall, son of Flann, son of Maeleachlainn, heir apparent to the sovereignty of Ireland, was slain by his brother, Donnchadh, at Bruighean-Dachoga. It was of the death of the same Maenach, son of Siadhal, and of Domhnall, was said:


    1. The fifth year, disastrous, sweet,
      From Flann of Teamhair, a company have died,
      Maenach of happy Comhgall's city,
      Domhnall was slain by Donnchadh Donn.
      Great grief is Maenach, O dear God!
      The illustrious, black-haired man of the charming face,
      The paragon of Ireland between two seas,
      The successor of the mild Comhgall,
      Head of counsel of the just province,
      Its golden crown to be sorrowfully regretted,
      Grievous to me that the wise man of Inis-Fail
      Died from the assembly of the brave Gaeidhil.
      A gem of the full precious stone,
      As far as noble Rome it is sign of sorrow.
      That Maenach of noble Munster does not live,
      'Tis sufficient cause of grief, O great God.


Ceallach, son of Conghalach, Abbot of Cill-achaidh;


Cinaedh, son of Domhnall, Abbot of Doire-Chalgaigh, and of Druim-Thuama, head of the council of the Cinel-Conaill, died.


Flaithbeartach, son of Muircheartach, Abbot of Cluainmor, died. Of him was said:

    1. Where is the resting place of the sacred ornament? Where the renown of great poetic powers?
      Behold Flaithbheartach, the fair of Fail, has separated from the honours of Cluain-mor.


Maelsinchill, son of Canannan, died; for him this quatrain was composed:

    1. The flame of wide Leinster to the shore, he was not feeble in the unequal strife,
      Mild clerkship, without violation of chastity, descended as a blessing on the gentle Maelsinchill.



Cearnach, son of Flann, Abbot of Lann-Leire, died; of whom was said:

    1. The torch of the plain (good in battle) of Bregia the fair and lovely, stout his strength,
      Brilliance of the sun, the sun upon his cheek. Cearnach of Leire, mournful the loss of him.


Macrodaidhe, son of Dunchadh, airchinneach of Cluain-Boireann, died.


Maenach, a Ceile-De Culdee, came across the sea westwards, to establish laws in Ireland.


Godfrey, grandson of Imhar, took up his residence at Ath-cliath; and Ard-Macha was afterwards plundered by him and his army, on the Saturday before St. Martin's festival; but he spared the oratories, with their Ceile-Des Culdees, and the sick. The country was plundered by him in every direction, i.e. westwards as far as Inis-Labhradha, eastwards as far as the Banna, and northwards as far as Magh-Uillseann. But, however, the host that went northwards was overtaken by Muircheartach, son of Niall, and Aighneart, son of Murchadh, so that the foreigners were defeated, a very great number of them was slain; but a few escaped in the darkness of the very beginning of the night, because they were not visible to them the Irish.


A fleet of foreigners, consisting of thirty-two ships, at Loch-Feabhail, under Olbh; and Inis-Eoghain was plundered by them. Fearghal, son of Domhnall, lord of the North, was at strife with them, so that he slew the crew of one of their ships, broke the ship itself, and carried off its wealth and goods. Twenty ships more arrived at Ceann-Maghair, in the east of Tir-Chonaill, under the conduct of Uathmharan,


son of Barith, but they committed no depredation on that occasion.


Maelseachlainn, son of Maelruanaidh, son of Flann, died.


The plundering of Cluain-eidhneach, the burning of the oratory of Mochua, and the burning of Fearna-mor-Maedhog, by the foreigners.

Annal M920


The Age of Christ, 920.


The third year of Donnchadh.


Maelpoil, son of Ailell, bishop, anchorite, and best scribe of Leath-Chuinn, and Abbot of Indedhnen, died. Concerning his death the following quatrain was composed:

    1. Maelpoil, who was in great dignity, a bishop who took the road of a king,
      A sage who enforced the law upon all, a man who dispensed peace all round.


Cormac, Bishop of Cluain-fearta-Brenainn;


and Ailell, son of Flaithim, Abbot of Cluain-mor-Maedhog, died.


Flannagan Ua-Riagain, Abbot of Cill-dara, and heir apparent of Leinster, died.


Maelinmhain Ua-Glascon, Abbot of Cluain-Dolcain;


Colga, son of Feadhach, Abbot of Slaine;


Alldghus of Cill-Scire;


Aedh Ua Raithnen, old sage of Ireland,and wise man of Saighir;


Feardalach, priest of Cluain-mic-Nois;


and Loingseach, son of Aenagan, [OElig ]conomus of Daimhliag, died.


Tadhg, son of Faelan, lord of South Leinster, who was called Ui-Ceinnsealaigh, died; of whom was said:

    1. Twice ten years, have followed upon nine hundred more,
      Since Christ was born, by rule, till the year in which we are.
      It is in this year certainly, according to the clear rule, occurred
      The death of Tadhg, the illustrious, happy, the noble King of Deasgabhair.


Innreachtach, son of Conchobhar, heir apparent of Connaught, died.


Mael-micduach, lord of Aidhne, was slain by the foreigners.


Aedh, son of Lonan O'Guaire, Tanist of Aidhne, died.


Finnguine Ua Maelmhuaidh, lord of Feara-Ceall, died.


An army was led by Donnchadh, King of Ireland, into Connaught, so that a great part of his people was killed in Duibhthir-Atha-Luain, where Cinaedh, son of Conchobhar, lord of Ui-Failghe, was slain.


Maelmordha, son


of Riagan, Tanist of Osraighe, died.


The plundering of Cluain-mic-Nois by the foreigners of Luimneach; and they came upon Loch Ribh, and plundered all its islands.


The plundering of En-inis in Fotharta-tire, by the foreigners, where twelve hundred of the Irish were slain, and Abel the scribe was martyred along with them.


The plundering of Cluain-mic-Nois by the son of Ailgi, who afterwards burned it.


Uathmharan,son of Dobhailen, lord of Luighne in Connaught, died.


Flaithbheartach, son of Inmhainen, King of Caiseal, went upon his pilgrimage; and Lorcan, son of Conlingan, assumed the kingdom of Caiseal.

Annal M921


The Age of Christ, 921.


The fourth year of Donnchadh.


Maelcallann, Abbot of Disert-Diarmada;


Maelpadraig, son of Morann, Abbot of Druim-cliabh and Ard-sratha;


Dubhdabhraine, Abbot of Ross-ailithir;


Maeltuile, son of Colman, lector of Cluain-mic-Nois; and Fiachra of Eaglais-beag at Cluain-mic-Nois, died.


Duibhlitir of Cill-Sleibhthe, priest of Ard-Macha, was martyred by the foreigners of Snamh-Aighneach.


Cucongalta, priest of Lann-Leire, the Tethra (i. e. the singer or orator) for voice, personal form, and knowledge, died.


Maelmordha, son of Conchobhar, lord of Ui-Failghe;


and Find son of Cearran, lord of Muscraighe, died.


Lighach, daughter of Flann, son of Maelseachlainn, and wife of Maelmithidh, lord of all Breagh, died, and was buried with great veneration at Cluain-mic-Nois.


Spelan, son of Conghalach, lord of Conaille-Muirtheimhne, was killed.


The plundering of Feara-Arda and Lann-Leire, and of Feara-Rois, in this year.


Cele, son of Anrothan, lord of Ui-Crimhthannain,




Maelcluithe, son of Conchobhar, heir apparent of Connaught, was killed.


Finn, son of Maelmordha, son of Muiregan, heir apparent of Leinster, was slain by Ceallach, son of Cearbhall.


Flaithbheartach, son of Inmainen, was taken by the foreigners on the island of Loch-Cre, and conveyed to Limerick.

Annal M922


The Age of Christ, 922.


The fifth year of Donnchadh.


Duibhlitir, Abbot of Cluain-eidhneach;


Muireadhach, son of Domhnall, Abbot of Mainistir-Buithe, head of the counsel of all the men of Breagh, lay and ecclesiastical, and steward of Patrick's people, from Sliabh Fuaid to Leinster, died.


Maelmordha, son of Conghalach, Abbot of Daimhinis,


Mochta of the Island, son of Cearnachan, priest of Ard-Macha, died.


Ceallach, son of Cearbhall, heir apparent of Leinster, was slain by Donnchadh, son of Domhnall; and Donnchadh, son of Domhnall, heir apparent of Teamhair, was slain by Maelruanaidh, son of Conchobhar, in revenge of Ceallach, son of Cearbhall, son of Muirigen.


A fleet of foreigners upon Loch Eirne, so that they plundered the islands and islets of the lake, and the districts on every side of it; and they remained on the lake till the ensuing summer, and they left the country at the end of that time.


Foreigners came upon Loch Cuan; and Maelduin, son of Aedh, heir apparent of the province, fell by them. Twelve hundred of the foreigners were drowned in Loch Rudhruidhe.


Foreigners upon Loch Ribh, i.e. under the conduct of Colla, son of Barith, lord of Luimneach; and it was by them Eachtighearn, son of Flannchadh, lord of Breaghmhaine, was slain.