Carmina Gadelica. Hymns and Incantations with Illustrative Notes on Words, Rites, and Customs, Dying and Obsolete: Orally Collected in the Highlands and Islands of Scotland and Translated into English.

  • Carmichael, Alexander
  • Edinburgh: Printed for The Author by T. and A. Constable, Printers to Her Majesty 1900


SKU: 5490 Category: Tags: , ,


FIRST EDITION, ONE OF 300 COPIES, 4to, pp. [ii], xxxii, 339, [1]; [ii], xi, [i], 350, [2] + frontispiece to vol. 1. Untrimmed in original white boards, red morocco labels. Boards a little soiled, some white pigment rubbed away from spines. Armorial bookplates of John Lorne Stewart to pastedowns.


The first printing of the first two volumes of Alexander Carmichael's (1832-1912) magnum opus, which eventually grew to encompass 6 volumes over the following 7 decades. After turning down offers from publishers Carmichael, having collected and translated the material, published it himself in this lavish limited-edition set; it was not reissued until 1928, lightly edited by his daughter Ella. Since its publication there have been doubts about its authenticity, the fidelity and accuracy of Carmichael's translations and his editorial influence on the material he collected but it remains a landmark work. If, as seems likely, Carmichael reworked and glossed his collected folklore to fit his own romantic image of the GĂ idhealtachd, the image this work conjures has proven to be a remarkable enduring and influential one, echoing through Scottish art and culture for more than a century.

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