Mission, Uses and Background

The initial development project for the catalogue, titled A Searchable, Standards Based Catalogue of the Calum Maclean Collection of Gaelic Oral Narrative was carried out between 2006 and 2009. The materials in the catalogue were collected by Maclean between 1945 and 1958 during his employment as a full-time field collector with the Irish Folklore Commission (IFC) in Dublin, and subsequently with the School of Scottish Studies, University of Edinburgh. The main collection, currently held in the National Folklore Archive, UCD, consists of Maclean’s written transcriptions from wax cylinder field recordings, bound in 23 volumes (10, 511 hand-written pages, approx. 2.1 million words). Also included are Maclean’s field diaries covering this period, written in Irish and Scottish Gaelic. A later collection of transcriptions from audio-tape (10 volumes; 2224 hand-written pages, approx.. 440, 000 words) is at the School of Scottish Studies (SSS), University of Edinburgh. The contents are primarily long folktales, with the occasional song and autobiographical item from reciters. Taken together the collections constitute the entire known corpus of Maclean’s Scottish Gaelic field transcriptions. Transcriptions have been rekeyed, entered into an XML database and marked up by researchers using TEI Lite. A scanned image of the original is linked to every page, and English summaries of the items are provided for folktale and song comparatists. International AT, ATU and ML classification numbers are given, together with Scottish legend classifications. A taxonomy of all items is provided. Searches may be based on title, name of reciter, location, recording date, classification or keywords. A comprehensive list of items in the collections, the system of taxonomy used and technical sections are provided from the project handbook for researchers, together with a bibliography of publications by Maclean.

This resource is for research purposes only. The copyrights for the reproduction of any materials in the collection are held by University College Dublin and University of Edinburgh.