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Interpreting Early Irish Law: Status and Currency (Part 1)

McLeod, N. (1986) Interpreting Early Irish Law: Status and Currency (Part 1). Zeitschrift für celtische Philologie, 41 (1). pp. 46-65.

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It has long been noted that in early Irish society there appear to be seven-fold divisions of status within the classes of freemen and filid ('seers' or 'poets') which seem to be in imitation of the seven Holy Orders of the Church. The division of the clergy into seven grades is evidenced at least as early as the third century. They were normally: porter, lector, exorcist, acolyte, sub-deacon, deacon and priest. The bishop was not usually considered to be sufficiently distinct from the priest to rank as a separate order.

Publication Type: Journal Article
Murdoch Affiliation: Research Centres and Institutes
Publisher: De Gruyter
Copyright: De Gruyter
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