Is the 12th century priest, Gerald of Wales, the same person as the 12th century monk, Gerald of Canterbury?I'm looking for the person who described the Book of Kells as "Here you may see the face...

Is the 12th century priest, Gerald of Wales, the same person as the 12th century monk, Gerald of Canterbury?

I'm looking for the person who described the Book of Kells as "Here you may see the face of majesty, divinely drawn, here the mystic symbols of the Evangelists, each with wings, now six, now four, now two; . . ."

Asked on by yrbenz

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bullgatortail | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Distinguished Educator

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Gerald of Wales (1146?-1123?) and Gerald of Canterbury are, indeed, one and the same person. Gerald was born Gerald de Barri, of Norman and Welsh blood, and the son of a powerful Welsh baron. (He is also known by the Welsh name Gerallt Gymro and the Latin name Giraldus Cambrenesis). He was a clergyman and writer. Gerald worked under the auspices of Richard of Dover, Archbishop of Canterbury; thus, the reference to him as Gerald of Canterbury. Gerald wrote a series of accounts of his journey to Ireland, including

  • Topographia Hibernica (1188)
  • Expugnatio Hibernica
  • Itinerarium Cambriae (1191)
  • Descriptio Cambriae (1194).

Gerald is referred to as "Gerald of Canterbury" in a discussion on the
Book of Kells (see link below).

Compare for example the following famous description of an Hiberno Saxon Gospel manuscript, perhaps the Book of Kells itself, written by the 12th century monk, Gerald of Canterbury (Topographia Hiberniae (1185).
 

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