[From Diocesan History, 1893]




THE early ecclesiastical history of Man is shrouded in as dense a mist of myth and tradition as is its early secular history. We can, therefore, only dimly grope our way to an understanding of the probable state of religion in Man at and after the introduction of Christianity, by a careful comparison of what went on in the adjacent countries, especially Ireland, during the same period ; and by inferential use of the names of the ancient Celtic saints which have come down to us in connection with this island. But, before entering upon this, it will, we think, be some guide to the better appreciation of the subject, if we briefly inquire who were the earliest inhabitants of Man, and what was their religious belief. There is but little doubt that the earliest inhabitants of Man were of non-Aryan race, because there are distinct traces of a cranial development typical of such a race among Manxmen at the present day.1 As to their religious belief, if we may judge from modern survivals2, it seems to have consisted in the worship of nature, or its spirit, as personified by animals, stones, trees, and wells.3 It was, in fact, a kind of fetichism, which considered the various objects of nature as malignant beings who had to be propitiated with offerings or sacrifices to avert their wrath. In connexion with this worship, a class of persons arose whom we know by the Celtic name of druadh,4 who stood between the people and their deities, and who acquired great power over the former by the influence they were supposed to exert over the latter by their sacrifices 5 and magic arts. Into the midst of these people came the conquering Goidels, who were, seemingly' originally polytheists of the Aryan type.6 These Goidels were clearly greatly influenced by the magic arts of the druids (dniadli), or priests, of the conquered race, as they practised a religion which combined the chief characteristics of druidism with those of their own. This view of the influence of the druids is confirmed by the use made of their name in the Celtic literature of later times. In Welsh poetry, it is applied to the wise men of the East, who came to our infant Saviour with gifts; and, in Ireland, it is not only used in the same manner, but is usually rendered into Latin by magus, a magician. The druadh, after their adoption by the Goidels, were, in fact, soothsayers, priests, and medicine-men, but their principal character was, perhaps, that of magicians.7 It is in this aspect of magicians that they 'appear in the early legends about the introduction of Christianity, one of which, for instance, represents St. Patrick, who is supposed to have driven them from Ireland, praying, in a very old hymn attributed to him, to be protected-

"Against snares of demons,
Against black laws of heathens,
Against spells of women, smiths, and druids." 8

They, indeed, are said to have given the saint much trouble, as they strove to surpass him in working miracles, though, of course, in vain, and they opposed him in every possible way.

Date of probable conversion of Manx doubtful.

In the Isle of Man, as elsewhere, the old order was to give way to the new, but probably so gradually, and certainly so obscurely, that we are entirely unable to state more than that the Manx were probably converted to Christianity in the sixth or seventh century, or possibly as early as the fifth century.9 But even this general statement is only made on the strength of indirect evidence, as there are no contemporary records relating to ecclesiastical events in Man before A.D. 1134,10 and no consecutive narrative before the middle of the thirteenth century, when the monks of Rushen probably began their Chronicon Manniae.11 The only difference, then, the historian finds, on passing from the period of paganism in Man to that of Christianity, is that he exchanges the comparatively trustworthy testimony of folklore for the hagiology of the early and medieval monks, which, however, is in some cases confirmed by the testimony of local names.

Conversion of Britain and Ireland.

But, before inquiring what these monks have to tell us, we may briefly state what is known about the conversion of Britain and Ireland, as their conversion must, almost certainly, have led to the same process in the small island lying between them, which, in the days when vessels crept along the shore as much as possible, would be a natural calling-place.

The British Church was represented at the Synod of Aries in A.D. 314 ; at the close of the fourth century the natives of Britain 12 were probably all Christians, and, at the beginning of the fifth century, they had advanced sufficiently to produce a heretic, Pelagius.13 This Pelagius had an intimate friend, Coelestinus, an Irishman, so that it is possible that in this way, if not also through the constant attacks of the Irish upon Britain during the fourth century, when they must have had intercourse with Christian natives, Christianity was introduced into Ireland before St. Patrick's time.14

Manx Christianized by Irish missionaries

Who introduced it to Man, we cannot tell, but from the large proportion of the names of Irish ecclesiastics surviving in the old Manx keeills, or cells, which are of similar type to the Irish oratories of the sixth and seventh centuries, and in the Manx parish churches, which are usually on ancient sites, it may reasonably be conjectured that Manxmen were, for the most part, Christianized by Irish missionaries ; and, indeed, it would have been strange if the proselytizing Irish15 monks, who, beginning in the sixth century, wandered all over Europe, had avoided an island so near to them.

Christianizing movements which might affect Man.

It is possible, however, that a Christianizing movement of somewhat earlier date may have reached Man from another quarter. For at the very end of the fourth century a British saint, Ninian (ob. ? 432), who had been trained at Rome, built a church, called Candida Casa, on the western side of Wigton Bay, and dedicated it to St. Martin of Tours.16 It is said that through his teaching the southern Picts were converted, but, as they soon afterwards seem to have apostatized,17 his influence was not a permanent one.

Our evidence about his possible influence in Man, as well as about that of his successors, Patrick (ob. 461) and Columba (n. 504, ob. 580), is founded upon the proximity of the sphere of their work to Man, and upon the names found there, as above mentioned; but it must be understood that the occurrence of these names in Man does not necessarily mean that those who bore them visited Man, or even that they were bestowed during the period of the saints' life time ; indeed, they were more probably the result of the pious remembrance preserved by later generations.

St. Ninian. 1st movement.

There may, then, be a trace of St. Ninian in Man in the name of the thirteenth century church of St. Trinian (a corruption of Saint Ninian), which may have been re-built on an older site, and the dedication of a keeill to St. Martin is perhaps due to the same connexion.

St. Patrick. 2nd movement.

With reference to the second Christianizing movement, that initiated by St. Patrick, there is more ample information, but, as regards Man, it is of an even less reliable character.18 The following interesting account of it is given in the Triparite Life of St. Patrick.

St. Patrick having by means of a miracle converted a wicked man of Ulster, called Macc Cuill, and his men, the following incident is related: "Then they were silent and said, 'Truly this man Patrick is a man of God.' They all forthwith believed, and Macc Cuill believed, and at Patrick's behest he went in the sea in a coracle of [only] one hide. . . . Now Macc Cuill went on that day to sea, with his right hand towards Mag Inis, till he reached Mann, and found two wonderful men in the island before him. And it is they that preached God's Word in Mann, and through their preaching the men of that island were baptized. Conindri and Romuil were their names. Now when these men saw Macc Cuill19 in his coracle they took him from the sea and received him with a welcome, and he learnt the divine rule with them until he took the bishopric after them.

Tripartite Life.

This is 'Macc Cuill from the sea,' the illustrious bishop and prelate of Arduimen."20

St Patrick's name common in sacred sites.

From this account it would certainly be inferred that St. Patrick had not visited Man21; but, whether he did so or not, his name has been freely made use of in Manx sacred sites, two of the parish churches, Kirk Patrick, and Kirk Patrick of Jurby, bearing it, and no less than seven keeills22.

Other saints of his time whose names are found in Man

The names of the following saints who are supposed to have lived during his time, are also found in Man: Maughold (the Macc Cuill already mentioned), said to have been one of his earliest disciples, who has given his name to a parish, a headland, and an islet; Lonan, who has a parish; and Brigit (n. 438, ob. 508), the most famous of Irish female saints, who has a parish and seven keeills23, and who, according to Manx tradition founded the nunnery near Douglas; and there is possibly also Ruisen, or Rushen, one of Patrick's disciples24 who may have given his name to the parish church of Rushen. From thence it may have been applied to the sheading, glen, castle and town of that name (the town being now called Castletown).

About St. Germanus, who is said to have preceded Conindrus and Romulus25, and to have been the first bishop, there has been much controversy, which need not be entered into here. It will suffice to state that he is not mentioned in any of St. Patrick's lives, except Jocelin's; nor is he mentioned in the Chronican Manniae. It has been suggested by the writer elsewhere26 that the name of Germanus, the famous bishop of Auxerre, sent with Lupus, bishop of Troyes, by the Gallican clergy in 429 to deliver the British Church from the Pelagian heresy, has been substituted for that of Coemanus, or Mochaemog27, a disciple of St. Patrick's, who according to an ancient legend, was connected with him in the conversion of the children of Lir28.

Conclusion arrived at.

Following the learned Dr. Lanigan, then, we may conclude that "there is no sufficient foundation for St. Patrick having preached in Man; that its first bishop was not the pretended Germanus ; and that, although it is not improbable that Conindrus and Romulus had received their appointment from our saint, we have no decisive testimony on the subject."29

Probable organization of Manx Church in Patrick's time.

It cannot, therefore, be regarded as more than possible that Man received Christianity in Patrick's time, and assuming that it did, let us consider in what way its Church was probably organized. If similar to the Church in Ireland, it would have been under "a congregational and tribal episcopacy, united by a federal rather than a territorial tie."30 But this system did not prove successful in Ireland, and seems "to have led, towards the end of his (St. Patrick's) life, to the adoption of a very peculiar sort of collegiate church. It consisted in a group of seven bishops placed together in one church; and they were brought closer to the tribal system based on the family, which prevailed in Ireland, by these bishops being usually seven brothers selected from one family in the tribe."31 There was an establishment of this kind in Iona at the end of the fifth century32, and it is not unlikely that there may have been something similar in Man. If we may believe the Tripartite Life, Man had at this time33 (the end of the fifth century) become famous as a retreat for hermit monks, but we may more reasonably conjecture that this was not so till a century later, especially as, according to two MSS.34 of the eighth century, the eremitical order did not begin in Ireland till towards the end of the sixth century.

Three orders of Saints.

These MSS. tell us that there were three classes of saints, corresponding to three periods of the Irish Church before the "great mortality " in 666. The first order was from Patrick to 534, when they "were all bishops . . . founders of churches . . . they observed one mass, one celebration, one tonsure from ear to ear," and "rejected not the services and society of women." In fact a period of churches and a secular clergy. In the second order, which lasted from 534 to 572, "there were few bishops and many presbyters" who "refused the services of women, separating them from the monasteries." Here the churches are superseded by monasteries, and the secular clergy by a regular or monastic clergy. The third order was that of eremitical clergy, "who dwelt in desert places, and lived on herbs and water, and the alms"; they did not supersede the monasteries, but coexisted with them.

3rd movement.

We now come to the third great Christianizing movement, that of St. Columba, which took place during the second and third of the three periods just mentioned, and which was clearly the one which had the most enduring influence upon Man. This famous Irish saint was educated chiefly at the monastic school of Clonard, founded by St. Finnian, a friend of St. Brigit's, some years before.

St. Columba.

The first forty years of his life were spent in Ireland, where he is said to have founded no less than 300 churches. About 546, he sailed to Iona, then called I or Hy, with twelve disciples and 200 companions. This island, where he founded a monastery, became his head-quarters, and from thence he made his numerous missionary expeditions, which appear to have speedily resulted, not only in the conversion of the Western Isles and Man, but also of the Picts of the mainland of Scotland.

We will now dwell briefly on the character of this holy man and the nature of the system which he established.

His character and system.

His biographer, Adamnan, who lived not long after his death, says of him that "from his boyhood he had been brought up in Christian training, in the study of wisdom, and by the grace of God had so preserved the integrity of his body and the purity of his soul that, though dwelling on earth, he appeared to live like the saints in heaven. For he was angelic in appearance, graceful in speech, holy in work, with talents of the highest order and consummate prudence; he lived during thirty-four years an island soldier. He never could spend the space even of one hour without study, or prayer, or writing, or some other holy occupation. So incessantly was he engaged night and day in the unwearied exercise of fasting and watching, that the burden of such austerities would seem beyond the power of all human endurance. And still in all these he was beloved by all; for a holy joy ever beaming on his face revealed the joy and gladness with which the Holy Ghost filled his inmost soul."35

As to his Church, we must bear in mind that it was from the Irish Church, with which it never lost its connexion. It was essentially a monastic Church, with its bishops under monastic rule, and as such, subject to the abbot36, even though a presbyter, as the head of the community, though their special functions — ordination and the celebration of the Eucharist — were fully recognized, as was their superior rank to the presbyters.

The members of the monastic community were termed brethren, and consisted of three classes. "Those of advanced years and tried devotedness were called seniors. Their principal duty was to attend to the religious services of the Church and to reading and transcribing the Scriptures. Those who were stronger and fitter to labour were termed the working brothers. Their stated labour was agriculture in its various branches, and the tending of cattle; and probably, in addition to this, the service within the monastery, in the preparation of food, and the manufacture of the various articles required for personal or domestic use. . . . The third class consisted of the youth who were under instruction. . . .

"The dress of the monks consisted of a white tunica, or undergarment, over which they wore a camilla, consisting of a body and hood made of wool, and of the natural colour of the material. When working or travelling their feet were shod with sandals, which they usually removed when sitting down to meat.

"Their food was very simple, consisting of bread, sometimes made of barley, milk, fish, eggs; and, in Iona, they appear to have also used seals' flesh. On Sundays and festivals, and on the arrival of guests, there was an improvement of diet; and an addition, probably of flesh meat . . . . was made to the principal meal. With regard to divine worship, Adamnan does not specially mention a daily service, but the recitation of the Psalter is so repeatedly alluded to as an important part of the service, that a part of the day was probably given to it. . . .The principal service was unquestionably the celebration of the Eucharist, which took place on the dies dominica, or Lord's day, on the stated festivals of the Church, as well as on such particular occasions as the abbot may have appointed. . . . One very important feature of this monastic system was the penitential discipline to which the monks were subjected. The ordinary discipline consisted of fasting on Wednesday and Friday, and during Lent, to which those who practised extreme asceticism added the strange custom of passing a certain time with the body entirely immersed in water, and in that uncomfortable condition reciting the whole or part of the Psalter. . .

"Their doctrinal system was that common to the Western Church prior to the fifth century. . . . To use the language of Columbanus, the Columban Church 'received nought but the doctrine of the evangelists and the apostles'; and, as we learn from Adamnan, the foundation of Columba's preaching, and his great instrument in the conversion of the heathen, was the Word of God."37

The monasteries38 in which such monks lived were probably of a very primitive description, consisting of groups of huts, surrounding a small church, or oratory39, where they met for worship.

The organization of this Church was tribal, like that of its predecessors. It would seem that when a tribe was converted to Christianity, it granted the saint to whom this was due a portion of its territory, which was called the territory of "the tribe of the saint," the remaining portion being called "the tribe of the land."40 On this territory, the saint formed a monastic establishment with its church, which was afterwards governed by abbots or coarbs connected by kinship with the original founder41, and was occupied by the monastic tribe as distinguished from the lay tribe. This tribe, or family, as it was also called, consisted partly of monks and partly of dependents. As Christianity spread, other churches in connexion with the original church would be established in various parts of the tribe's territory. The main characteristics of the Irish Church, then, were that it was a similar organization to that of the civil tribe, and that, during and after the Columban period, it was governed by abbots, who might be laymen, and not by bishops. In fact, as a learned writer well describes it, "the civil chaos out of which society had not yet escaped was faithfully reproduced in a Church devoid of hierarchical government; intensely national as faithfully reflecting the ideas of the nation, but not national in the ordinary acceptation of the term, as possessing an organization co-extensive with the territory occupied by the nation."42

Evidence of the extension of the Columban Church to Man.

As regards the extension of this Church to Man, in addition to the fact that the names of Columban monks are found there, it should be borne in mind how great and far extended was the influence of Iona on all the adjacent countries. Thus Bede, in speaking of Northumbria, in the period 634 to 664, says that "all the province, and even the bishops, were subject to Iona."43

Let us now briefly investigate the names of Columban monks in Man. Columba himself names a parish, though it now, except in the official records, bears its alternative name of Arbory, also a keeill; but perhaps an even more significant proof of what his influence was in Man is the fact that his name is still considered an effective charm against the fairies44. One of his companions, St. Mochonna, or St. Dachonna, who was sent by him to the Picts, had a shrine on Inis-Patrick, probably Peel Island in Man45, which, in 798, according to the Annals of Ulster, was "broken" by the "Gentiles" i.e. the Norsemen.

Of the various Moluas, Molipas, Malius, and Moluocs, from whom the parish of Malew may have taken its name, the most likely to have been connected with Man is the Moluoc, who founded a monastery in Lismore in Columba's time46, and after whom the church of Kilmaluoc there is named. St. Ronan, too, though after Columba's time, belonged to his Church, and is commemorated in Man in the parish of Marown, the church of which is dedicated to St. Runius (in Manx Keeill-Marooney), in Keeill-Ronan, and perhaps in Ronnag47. Donnan of Eig, who founded a monastery in that island, probably in Columba's lifetime, and was "killed by robbers of the sea"48 there, in 616, is perhaps commemorated in Ardonan, "Donan's height.''49 Such is the evidence which certainly tends to show that there was a Columban Church in Man.

The Culdees.

Towards the end of the sixth century, as we have already seen50, the communities of monks living in common under an abbot were largely supplemented, if not superseded, by recluses, or anchorites, called Célé-Dé (companion or servant of God) or Culdees — who considered that a solitary life passed in devotion and self-mortification, accompanied by acts of benevolence to the sick and bereaved, was a "cultus" or "religio" particularly acceptable to God.51

Inhabited the keeills

Judging from the numerous remains of the ancient keeills, or cells, which are still found in Man, we may, on the supposition that these keeills, or some of them, were used by the recluses52, reasonably conclude that the Isle of Man was a favourite resort of theirs.

Description of the keeills.

The more primitive of the keeills were made entirely of sods, and their internal dimensions are about 15 ft. by 9 ft. Their single entrance seems to have been the only source of light. They were usually erected on artificial hillocks, some 3 ft. or 4 ft. high, and 30 ft. in diameter, which were surrounded by a sod fence, and contained no graveyard. A rather better class of keeill was built of sod and rough stone, or of rough stone only, without mortar. These keeills seem to have had side-lights, as well as an entrance-way, and their artificial hillocks, which were oval in form, being as much as 120 ft. by 70 ft., were used as graveyards. As they are all in ruins, it is impossible to say how they were roofed. A third and still more advanced style of keeill has its stories bound together with a sort of plastic clay. Their entrances are formed of three monoliths, of which the two side stones incline towards each other at the top, which is covered by the third. They have square-headed windows, and, in one of them, a rude bell turret survives on the western gable, the form of which shows that the roof was a high-pitched one. They are not on a raised mound. Their dimensions, and those of the second class, are about 20 ft. by 12 ft.53 It is clear then, that, as these cells were so small, they were not intended for large congregations, but merely for the accommodation of the recluse, and of a few who would visit him for religious advice and the ministrations of the Church. It is also significant of their use that near them there was invariably a well whence the holy men could draw water, both for their own consumption and for baptizing the children of those who came to them. It is possible, however, judging by the analogy of Ireland, that, in some cases, the recluses did not inhibit the keeills, but small buildings adjoining them, of which there are no traces left in Man. When this was so, as the recluses did not leave their abodes, the services in the keeills would probably be conducted by a monk from the central monastery connected with the original church, which, in Man, was most likely to have been on Peel Island.

Description of the anchorite's cell and the rule by which he lived.

We may probably get an idea of what these buildings were like in Man, and gain some knowledge of the way in which the Manx recluses spent their time, from the following rule which was drawn out for the guidance of the Irish recluses, or anchorites — "An anchorite's cell should be built of stone, 12 ft. long and 12 ft. broad. It should have three windows, one facing the choir through which he may receive the Body of Christ, another on the opposite side through which he may receive his food, and the third for light . . . He should be provided with three articles — a jar, a towel, and a cup. After tierce he is to lay the jar and cup outside the window, and then close it. About noon he is to come and see if his dinner be there. If it be, he is to sit at the window and eat and drink. When he has done, whatever remains is to be left outside for any one who may choose to remove it, and he is to take no thought for the morrow. But if it should happen that he has nothing for his dinner, he is not to omit his accustomed thanks to God, though he is to remain without food till the following day. His garments are to be a gown and a cap, which he is to wear waking and sleeping. In winter he may, if the weather be severe, wear a woolly cloak, because he is not allowed to have any fire save what his candle produces."54

These recluses or "culdees were finally brought under the canonical rule along with the secular clergy, retaining, however, to some extent the nomenclature of the monastery, until at length the name of culdee became almost synonymous with that of secular canon."55 But neither this change, nor that of permitting the monks to marry, would have had time to develop in the Celtic Church of Man, before it was brought to an end by the pagan Northmen.

Isolation of Irish Church.

Before this catastrophe, Man, like Ireland, having been almost certainly cut off from Europe, for a time, by the English conquest of Britain, would have had a share in the peculiar Irish Christianity, which was developed there with an enthusiasm, learning, and energy far greater than existed elsewhere — a Christianity which propagated its tenets by sending missionaries all over Europe.

Its learning.

Armagh and Durrow were the universities of the west, and concentrated within their walls the science and biblical knowledge which had all but deserted the Continent.

Struggle about Easter.

This isolation began, however, to be broken down early in the seventh century, when the bitter struggle between the Irish and Roman Churches about the time of keeping of Easter began. The southern Irish, who had been more in contact with Britain and Gaul, adopted the Roman time in 633, while the northern Irish, with whom Man was naturally connected, swayed by the influence of the Columban community, did not fully adopt it till 716. This assimilation to Rome caused a decay in the Celtic Church system, and this decay was, later on, accelerated in Ireland by the Scandinavian invasions, which, in Man, probably all but completely destroyed not only the Celtic Church, but Christianity itself by the middle of the ninth century, as Man was not, like the larger adjacent kingdoms, partially occupied by the Northmen, but was entirely subjected by them. Yet, even so, the Celtic Church in Man has left some tokens of its existence in the ruins of the ancient keeills with their burying-grounds and sacred wells, in the round tower on Peel Island, in two rude pillar stones with incised crosses56, and in a few57 ogam inscriptions; and its continuity is proved by the fact that the inscribed crosses, dating from the latter part of the Scandinavian period, are, for the most part, found on ancient sacred sites dedicated to Celtic saints, whose names have come down to our own time. There are also village fairs of immemorial antiquity still held on the days of those saints, and the names of the staff-lands of St. Patrick and St. Maughold serve to remind us that these lands were held by lay families, as the hereditary guardians of the staffs of these saints, till a comparatively recent period.


1 The Physical Anthropology of the Isle of Man (Beddoe). Manx Note-Book, No. IX., pp. 23-33.

2 See Folklore of the Isle of Man (A. W Moore), pp. 141-53.

3 According to Gomme, Ethnology in FoIklore, the condition under which such survivals as these are found "show that they date from a time prior to the arrival of the Celts in this country"; (P. 173), thus affording an additional proof of the non-Aryan character of Man's first inhabitants.

4 " The non-Celtic natives . . . had another religion, namely druidism, which may be surmised to have had its origin among them " (Rhys, Celtic Britain, p. 69).

5 It should be remembered, that " in no tale or legend of the Irish druids " (with whom the Manx druids were most likely to have been connected) " which has come down to our time, is there any mention of their ever having offered human sacrifices " (O'Curry, Manners and Customs of the Ancient Irish, vol. ii., p. 222). In this respect they differed from the British druid, who did so. (See Tacitus, Ann. xiv., 29, 30.)

6; " Goidelic Celts, devotees of .a religion which combined Aryan polytheism with druidism" (Rhys, Celtic Britain, p. 70).

7 It was formerly supposed that they sacrificed to the Phoenician Baal in the stone circles, but more recent research has shown that these mighty monuments are the memorials of a prehistoric race, and that the Goidels had no knowledge of this deity.

8 Quoted by Skene, Celtic Scotland, vol. ii., p.111 The contact between Christianity in Man and the departing druidism is shown by the occurrence of the genitive of druadh -i.e. droata -in the ogam character on a stone near Port St. Mary.

9 The Tripartite Life of St. Patrick, which O'Curry (MS. Materials of Ancient Irish History, 343-51) considers older than the Book of Armagh (A. D. 807), but on insufficient evidence, gives an account, as we shall see, of the conversion of the Manx in the fifth century ; and the Book of Armagh tells us of the conversion of the Manx Saint Maughold. [Of the materials of this Book of Armagh, Aed, bishop ofGleibte (ob. 697), whose Memoir of Patrick is the second oldest in it (the oldest being that by Tirechan, ob. 657), tells us that many took in hand "to set forth in order a narration ; but by reason of the very great difficulty of the narrative and the diverse opinions and numerous doubts of very many persons, have never arrived at any one certain tract ofhistory " (Life of St. Patrick, Dr. Todd's translation, P. 402), so we need not place much reliance on its contents. For note on lives of Saints, see note a, p. 15.]

10 See Manx Soc., Vol. XXIII., P. 269. It should be borne in mind that the list of Manx bishops, beginning with Patrick, given by recent Manx historians is a purely imaginary one. In support of this statement we may quote the monks of Rushen Abbey-and monks are usually credulous in such matters-to the effect that they regarded it as " sufficient to have begun the account of the bishops from Roolwer (end of eleventh century), because we are entirely ignorant who or what were the bishops before Roolwer's time ; for we neither find any written documents on the subject, nor have we -any certain accounts handed down by our elders" (Chronicon Manniae" Manx Soc. vol. xxii., pp. 113-14).

11 In 1249, the monks write of a story which was told them, We have written the above as we had it from his own lips" Chronicon Manniae, " Manx Soc., vol. xxii., p. 105).

12 i.e. England and Wales.

13 Said to be a translation of Morgen, later Morien, " sea, born." See Rhys, Hibbert Lectures, p. 229.

14 About this period came the gradual conquest of Britain by the pagan Saxons, but this would not affect Ireland or the districts of Cambria, Strathclyde, and Galloway, adjacent to Man.

15 They may have come either direct from Ireland or from the Scotch isles, see p. 20.

16 Bede Hist. Ec., B. iii, 4, quoted by Skene, Celtic Scotland, vol.i., p.130.

17 Jocelin, Life of Kentigern, quoted by Skene, Celtic Scotland, vol.ii., p.39.

18 See note 1, ante, p.12. As to the lives of the Irish saints, which may be quoted as authorities on this period, O'Curry states that the oldest belong to the seventh century. On these have been founded the various martyrologies, of which the best are those of Tallacht, of Aengus, and of Donegal.

19 Or Maughold. For account of his conversion, see Book of Armagh, or Folklore of the Isle of Man, pp.21-25.

20 Stokes's translation, p.223. Instead of Arduimen, Colgan has Ard-Ebnanensis.

21 It was reserved for Jocelin (on whose account that in the Chronicon Manniae is probably founded), a monk of Furness, writing early in the twelfth century - who may, however, have had access to information not attainable now - to assert his visit to Man as a fact, and his narrative is expanded and embellished by the Supposed True Chronicle of Man and the Traditionary Ballad, both probably of not earlier date than the sixteenth century.

22 Besides these, there is an old cromlech (?) called his chair in the parish of Marown. (See note, pp.30-3l.)

23 Brigit is said to have come over to Man to receive the veil from Maughold (Book of Armagh).

24 Martyrology of Tallacht.

25 Colgan, Trias Thaumaturga, quinta appendix ad Acta S. Patricii, p. 266.

26 Manx Names (A. W. Moore), pp. 210-11.

27 The prefix "Mo" (my) and the affix "og" (young) are both expressive of endearment.

28 The Tragical Fate of the Children of Lir, an imaginative story of unknown date, tells us that it was "by St. Patrick and St. Mochaemog the children of Lir were gathered into the fold of Christ." Being baptized they slept in peace, "their tombstone was raised over their graves, and their ogam names were written and their lamentation rites were performed, and heaven was obtained for their souls through the prayers of Mochaemog". (O'Curry, The Atlantis Magazine, no. VII p. 153). This Lir was the father of Manannan, the eponymous ruler of Man.

29 Ecclesiastical History of Ireland, vol. i., chap. vi., n. 118, pp. 305-307. The following more obscure saints may also belong to this period. St. Connigen (parish of Conchan), Cairbre (parish of Arbory), St. Orora (Keeill-Crore); St. Lingan (Keeill-Lingan).

30 Skene, Celtic Scotland, vol.ii, p. 22.

31 Ibid., pp.24-5.

32 As we find Aengus, the Culdee, in his Litany invoking " the seven bishops of Hii."

33 "Manniam sive Euboniam olim Druidum et gentilium vatum, postea, ab adventu Sti. Patricii, Christi mystarum et monachorum secessu ; et sede nobilem, claramque insulam." (Sep. Vita S. Patricii, cap. cliii, p.98.)

34 A Catalogue of the Saints of Ireland, atttributed to Tirechan, and the "Litany of Aengus." (Quoted by Skene, Celtic Scotland, vol. ii, pp.12-14.)

35 Adamnan, Preface 11. Quoted by Skene, Celtic Scotland, vol. ii., p.145.

36 These abbots at a later date did not take orders, and so virtually became laymen with an hereditary office.

37 Skene, Celtic Scotland, vol. ii., p. 101 (Founded on Adamnan's account.)

38 Two of the most famous Irish monasteries, Bangor and Sabhal, had lands in Man. See p. 36.

39 See Martyrology of Donegal, p.177; Colgan, p.458 &c. The condition of the monks who lived in these huts may be judged from the description given by Dicuil of the Irish monks in Iceland, who rejoiced in the light at midnight in summer because it was sufficient to allow them "Pediculos de camisia abstrahere tanquam in praesentia solis " (Stokes, Ireland and the Celtic Church, p.217).

40 See the tract Cortis Bescna in Senchus Mor., Rolls Edition, p. 65.

41 See Ibid., p. 79, where elaborate rules as to the rights of succession are given.

42 Introduction to Rolls Edition of Ancient Laws of Ireland, vol. iii., p. lxxvi.

43 Skene, Celtic Scotland, vol. ii., p. 157.

44 See FoIklore of the Isle of Man, p. 99.

45 This is Dr Tood's opinion. See Introduction to the Wars of the Gaedhill with the Gaill.

46 Ob. 737.

47 Cf. Kilmaronok (Lennox), Teampull Ronaig, and Cladh Ronan (Iona).

48 Skene, Celtic Scotland, vol. i., p. 345.

49 The name of St. Brendan, the navigator, which probably occurs in the name of the parish of Braddan, would seem to have come to us from the Scotch isles, which he visited about 545 A.D., before the establishment of the Columban Church.

50 See p. 20.

51 Dr. Stokes (Ireland and the Celtic Church, pp.186-188) ingeniously tries to identify Irish and Oriental monasticism in several important particulars.

52 But perhaps also in connexion with a central monastery, see p. 28.

53 The length of the Manx keeills in proportion to their breadth is usually as five to three. See Manx Soc., vol. xv., pp. 79-89.

54 "Memoirs of the Church of St Dunleach" by William Reeves, in Journal of the Royal Historical and Archaeological Association of Ireland, 1859.

55 Skene, Celtic Scotland, vol. ii p. 277.

56 These form part of the cromlech (?) called St. Patrick's chair, which are in the middle of a field called "Magher-y-Chiarn" in the parish of Marown. Mr. Romilly Allen ("Early Christian Monuments of the Isle of Man," in the Journal of the British Archaeological Association, vol. xliii p. 240) considers that they belong "to the period from about A.D. 400 to 700." We may also note an interesting inscription in Roman uncials as belonging to the same period (see Kermode, Manks Crosses, p. 55).

57 Six in number (see Kermode, Manks Crosses, pp. 57-60).


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