Berchán m. Muiredaig of Cluain Sosta

Other names

He is Berchán m. Micain in Rec. Mai (only in La 610 and LUM) no. 201 and Breccán m. Maiccaím in Rec. Min no. 473.

Introduction

Berchán’s genealogy in Rec. Mai. would make him flourish in about the early 8th century (Ainbchellach m. Ferchair died AU 719.6). This is the Berchán who is usually identified as the author of the early part of the Prophecy of Berchán (Hudson 1996) Two separate head-names correspond to this saint in Ó Riain 1985 – Berchán m. Muiredaig and Berchán of Cluain Sosta. They are here regarded as part of the same original saint, as is Berchán m. Micáin, who is separated out by some scholars including Hudson who has this: this Berchán [Berchán m. Micáin] is credited with authorship of Ind ráth hi comair in dairfheda, found in the genealogies for the kings of Leinster (CGH p 58). He was tutor of Flann Febla mac Scannlan (d. 715) who was comarba of Patrick ie head of the church of Armagh. He might also be the Berchán credited with authorship of Celebrad én ar m'airi of which only a single verse survives. It is in an Armagh MS (Hudson 1996, 107). The three strands (Berchán m. Muiredaig, Berchán of Cluain Sosta and Berchán m. Micáin) are considered together under one head-name in Ó Riain, Dictionary, 97, as they are here.

Associated places

Cluain Sosta (Mart. G gloss, Mart. O. notes in RB505, Rec. Min. no. 556): Clonsast tl. and par., bar. of Coolestown, co. Offaly.

Genealogies

He is descended from Loarn m. Eirc Mor via Ainbchellach m. Ferchair in Rec. Mai. no. 201. In Rec. Min. no 556, as in Mart. Do. he is simply descended from Cairpre Rigfota from whom the earliest origin legends derived the Dál Riata (Bannerman 1974 p 122-4). Through his mother he belongs to a branch of the S. Uí Néill whose kingdom was part of Brega (Mothers of the ss no. 722.63; Byrne 1973 p 93) Berchán Cluana Sasta also appears among Leinster saints in Rec. Mai. no. 270 but note in original text says that only some of the saints in that section (Rec. Mai. nos 261-271) are from Leinster. All ten are called Berchán. Where Rec. Mai. in LL has Berchán m. Muiredaig, LUM and La 610 have ‘Berchan m. Micain m. Dega do Cruithnib do’ (Rec. Mai. no. 201). Descent from the Cruithne is repeated in Rec. Min. (Rec. Min. no 473).

Related Saints

Belongs to the group Berach, Berchán, Mo Bí (ns)

Same as Berchán m. Nemnann (possible)

Related Personal Names

Name

Berchán (certain)