ADAMNAN, or ADOMNAN (c. 624-704), Irish saint and historian, was born at Raphoe, Donegal, Ireland, about the year 624. In 679 he was elected abbot of Hy or Iona, being ninth in succession from the founder, St Columba.  While on a mission to the court of King Aldfrith of Northumberland in 686, he was led to adopt the Roman rules with regard to the time for celebrating Easter and the tonsure, and on his return to Iona he tried without success to enforce the change upon the monks.  He died on the 23rd of September 704.

Adamnan wrote a Life of St. Columba, which, though abounding in fabulous matter, is of great interest and value.  The best editions are those published by W. Reeves (1857, new edit.  Edinburgh, 1874) and by J. T. Fowler (Oxford, 1894).  Adamnan’s other well-known work, De Locis Sanctis (edited by P. Geyer, Itinera Hierosolymitana saeculi, iii.-viii., &c., 1898; vol. 39 of Bienna Corpus Script.  Ecc. Latin) was based, according to Bede, on information received from Arculf, a French bishop, who, on his return from the Holy Land, was wrecked on the west coast of Britain, and was entertained for a time at Iona.  This was first published at Ingolstadt in 1619 by J.  Gretser, who also defended Baronius’ acceptance of Arculf’s narrative against Casaubon.  An English translation by G.  J. R. Macpherson, Arculfus’ Pilgrimage in the Holy Land.  was published by the Pilgrim’s Text Society (London, 1889).


Source: 1911 encyclopedia.





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