Module Descriptions

 

Undergraduate Modules

Postgraduate Modules

Click on any module link to view a brief module description and reading list.

Detailed descriptions including module objectives, content and learning outcomes as well as requirements for assessment are outlined in the Book of Modules


CC1111 The Ancient Celts

CC1112 Celtic Religion and Mythology

CC1113 Celtic Literature

CC2001 Saints and Scholars in Medieval Europe

CC2002 Celtic Saints

CC2006 The Brehon Laws

CC2007 The Celtic Languages

CC2008 Early Irish Spirituality

CC2010 Directed Study in Medieval Celtic Culture

CC2011 Celtic Women

CC3001 The Mabinogi: Legends of Medieval Wales

CC3003 Ireland and Scotland

CC3004 Otherworld Journeys and Saintly Visions in Celtic Literature

CC3006 Irish Historical Tales

CC3007 The Finn Cycle

CC3009 Research Project

CC3010 Early Irish I

CC3011 Early Irish II

CC3012 The Roots of the Arthurian Legend

GA2031 Stair na Teanga

GA2032 Litríocht na Sean-Ghaeilge

GA3031 Filíocht na Sean- agus na Meán-Ghaeilge

GA3032 Staidéar Bunúsach ar an tSean-Ghaeilge

CC6001 Old Irish

CC6003 Early Irish Text

CC6004 Medieval Welsh

CC6006 Special Topic

CC6007 Research Presentation

CC6008 Palaeography and Manuscript-based Research

CC6013 Field Trips to Early Christian Sites

CC6014 Independent Research: Early Christian Ireland

CC6017 Early Irish Text: Language and Literature 1

CC6018 Early Irish Text: Language and Literature 2

CC6019 Irish Pilgrimage and Development of the Western Church

CC6020 Otherworlds and Afterworlds in the Medieval Irish Imagination

CC6021 Devotion and Belief in Pre-Norman Ireland

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Undergraduate Modules

FIRST YEAR

CC1111 The Ancient Celts

This module examines the emergence of the Celts, as well as their culture and their encounters with other societies on the Continent, in Britain and in Ireland.

CC1111 Reading List

 

CC1112 Celtic Religion and Mythology

The ancient Celts were famous for their extravagant rituals and for their mysterious druid priesthood; but we have no first-hand evidence for their myths and beliefs. This module examines the rich legendary literatures of medieval Ireland and Wales in search of the pagan supernatural traditions on which they drew.

CC1001(2) / CC1112 Reading List

 

CC1113 Celtic Literature

The primary aim of this module is to investigate and assess the early heroic literature of the Celtic countries, with a focus on early Irish texts from the Ulster Cycle and in particular on Táin Bó Cúailnge ‘The Cattle-Raid of Cooley’, the most important extant epic from medieval Ireland. On completion of this module, students should be able to outline the corpus of medieval Celtic literature, contextualise this literature within the societies that created it, and critically evaluate the extant material (which is studied in translation).

CC1113 Reading List

 

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SECOND YEAR

CC2001 Saints and Scholars in Medieval Europe

This module considers the phenomenon of the wandering ecclesiastics – hermits, monastic founders, men of learning – who left Ireland for Britain, the Continent or the north Atlantic between the sixth and the twelfth centuries. The ideals which motivated them will be studied; also their contribution to European culture as a whole.

CC2001 Reading List

 

CC2002 Celtic Saints

Through close reading of medieval accounts of the lives of several major Celtic saints, this module illuminates such key aspects of Christianity in the Celtic lands as the relationship between religious communities and society as a whole, and conceptions of the nature of holiness.

CC2002 Reading List

 

CC2006 The Brehon Laws

A survey of the written sources concerned with the institutions of Church and State (all material will be studied in translation). Though the medieval Irish and Welsh law tracts are the most important primary sources for this module, this is not a course in legal history. On completion of this module, students should be able to evaluate the nature of learning and society in the Celtic countries in the Middle Ages, outline the main features of medieval Irish and Welsh society, and critically evaluate the major social documents from medieval Ireland and Wales.

CC2006 Reading List

 

CC2007 The Celtic Languages

This course provides students with an overview of the history of the Celtic languages from the earliest Continental Celtic inscriptions down to the decline of the Celtic languages in modern times. Such topics as the place of the Celtic languages in the Indo-European language tree and the emergence of Insular Celtic are addressed. This course enables students to recognise how the various Celtic languages are related to one another, but each language is also examined individually within its cultural context.

CC2007 Reading List

 

CC2008 Early Irish Spirituality

Students use original sources, read in translation, in order to gain insight into the many-sided world of Christian faith in early Ireland. Themes include prayer, the saints, God's relationship with the cosmos, the continuing role of pagan tradition, and ideas concerning the afterlife and the end of the world.

CC2008 Reading List

 

CC2010 Directed Study in Medieval Celtic Culture

Detailed research and presentation on a topic agreed with the Department.

 

CC2011 Celtic Women

The Celtic literatures contain a variety of strong and memorable female characters, and there is evidence that goddesses played a potent part in pagan Celtic religion: what was the relationship between these impressive figures and the lives of women in reality? This module explores the roles and status of women in ancient and medieval Celtic societies, using such sources as sagas, lyric poetry, saints’ Lives and legal treatises.

CC2011 Reading List

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THIRD YEAR

CC3001 The Mabinogi: Legends of Medieval Wales

The four Welsh tales called the Mabinogi represent some of the finest narrative prose produced in medieval Europe. In a close reading of these stories in translation, students consider their roots in British myth, the evidence for external influences, and ways in which they serve as documents of the time of their composition.

CC3001 Reading List

 

CC3003 Ireland and Scotland

This module examines the early political and ecclesiastical interchange between Ireland and Scotland, covering such topics as the expansion of Irish settlers in Scotland at the expense of the Picts, the range and significance of the monastic federation of Iona, and the impact of the Vikings in different parts of the Gaelic world.

CC3003 Reading List

 

CC3004 Otherworld Journeys and Saintly Visions in Celtic Literature

The course concentrates for the most part on a genre of medieval Irish literature, the so-called ‘Vision Tales’, which supply vivid descriptions of the Afterlife, including graphic accounts of the torments of hell. This Irish material is placed in context by reference to the wider Judaeo-Christian tradition to which it belongs. Reference is also made to Irish voyage accounts, with particular emphasis on the hell-like descriptions in these tales.

CC3004 Reading List

 

CC3006 Irish Historical Tales

This module serves as an introduction to medieval Irish literary compositions about characters and events of the early historical era. The material under investigation is datable to the period between the eighth and twelfth centuries AD. Attitudes to kingship and views of history in the tales are explored. All texts are read in translation.

CC3006 Reading List

 

CC3007 The Finn Cycle

Finn mac Cumaill is perhaps the greatest hero of the Gaelic world: a warrior and seer celebrated from the oldest records down to our own day. This module surveys tales and poems (all read in translation) reflecting the early phases of the rich cycle of traditions concerning his adventures.

CC3007 Reading List

 

CC3009 Research Project

Research on a topic agreed with the Department.

 

CC3010 Early Irish I

Study of the basic rules of Early Irish grammar and syntax.

CC3010 Reading List

 

CC3011 Early Irish II

Study of the basic rules of Early Irish grammar and syntax. Students wishing to take this module must have studied CC3010 or equivalent previously.

CC3011 Reading List

 

CC3012 The Roots of the Arthurian Legend

The most far-reaching Celtic impact on the European imagination was probably through stories about King Arthur and his knights: although adapted to fit the norms of chivalry, these narratives preserve many themes from Welsh tradition. This module considers the origins of the legends, and traces Celtic elements in the romances themselves.

CC3012 Reading List


Modules Taught in the BA (Modern Irish)

 

GA2031 Stair na Teanga

Staidéar ar theanga na Gaeilge ag díriú go háirithe ar an tSean-Ghaeilge agus ar an gcomhthéacs idirnáisiúnta.

GA2031 Reading List

 

GA2032 Litríocht na Sean-Ghaeilge

Suirbhé ar scéalaíocht na Sean-Ghaeilge. Pléifear ábhar, comhthéacs agus fiúntas na scéalaíochta.

GA2032 Reading List

 

GA3031 Filíocht na Sean- agus na Meán-Ghaeilge

Pléifear litríocht, go háirithe filíocht na Sean-Ghaeilge. Pléifear an litríocht laistigh de chomhthéacs na lámhscríbhinní ina bhfuil sí tagtha anuas.

GA3031 Reading List

 

GA3032 Staidéar Bunúsach ar an tSean-Ghaeilge

Staidéar ar an tSean-Ghaeilge. Déanfar staidéar bunúsach ar ghramadach na Sean-Ghaeilge ar dtús agus ansin léifear agus pléifear roinnt téacsanna roghnaithe.

GA3032 Reading List

 

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Postgraduate Modules

 

CC6001 Old Irish

A study of Old Irish grammar and syntax, introducing students to the fundamentals of the Old Irish language.

 

CC6003 Early Irish Text

Study of linguistic and literary features of a set Early Irish text.

 

CC6004 Medieval Welsh

Introduction to Middle Welsh grammar followed by guided reading, in the original, of one of the classics of Welsh legend. The choice of text varies from year to year.

 

CC6005 Research Seminar

The module will introduce students to the basic research skills necessary for postgraduate work. This will include reading of manuscripts and analysis of materials.

 

CC6006 Special Topic

Directed study (Supervised Independent Research. If appropriate, student may also attend a language course such as LT6001).

 

CC6007 Research Presentation

Preparation and public presentation of a research paper.

 

CC6008 Palaeography and Manuscript-based Research

This module is aimed at postgraduate students wishing to receive research training in the use of Irish manuscripts, both medieval and modern. Prior to registration students attend a two-day workshop comprised of several intensive seminars led by experts in the relevant fields. A wide range of manuscripts compiled in Ireland are discussed containing texts in Old, Middle and Modern Irish as well as Latin. Particular emphasis is placed on familiarising student with scripts and abbreviations, and on practical editing exercises.

 

CC6011 Continuing Old Irish

Further study of Old Irish grammar and syntax, taking students through more advanced aspects of the Old Irish language.

 

CC6013 Field Trips to Early Christian Sites

The aim of the field trips is to develop the students' interest in the subject through non-lecture based engagement with early Christian sites in Ireland. The combination of site visits and lectures, coupled with project work and a detailed journal/portfolio prepared by the students creates a varied and rich learning experience which develops the students' skills and confidence on many different levels.

 

CC6014 Independent Research: Early Christian Ireland

A topic concerning early Christian Ireland will be chosen by the student with guidance from Departmental staff. This topic will be investigated and written up as a research paper to meet scholarly standards obtaining in the field. Students will be guided on appropriate methods of research presentation.

 

CC6017 Early Irish Text: Language and Literature 1

Study of linguistic and literary features of a set Early Irish text.

Students wishing to take this module must have studied CC6003 or its equivalent previously.

 

CC6018 Early Irish Text: Language and Literature 2

Study of Early Irish linguistic and literary features of a set text, as well as the manuscript context.

Students wishing to take this module must have studied CC6017 or its equivalent previously.

 

CC6019 Irish Pilgrimage and Development of the Western Church

Historical and literary evidence for the ecclesiastical Irish presence in Britain and on the Continent in the early Middle Ages.

 

CC6020 Otherworlds and Afterworlds in the Medieval Irish Imagination

A survey of Irish eschatological literature, and its links with Latin and vernacular voyage narratives. Close reading, analysis and comparison of relevant texts, such as vision tales, voyage tales and saints' lives.

 

CC6021 Devotion and Belief in Pre-Norman Ireland

This module surveys the spiritual universe of the early Irish, with special emphasis on such areas as the integration of native tradition with ecclesiastical learning, the framing of a distinctively Irish cosmology and eschatology, and the ideals of holiness reflected in the Lives of the saints.

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