IRC–SFI Pathway PhD International Scholarships in Ireland

  • Phd
  • €18,500 p.a. + €5,750 towards fees
  • 6 June 2022

The Department of History, School of Histories and Humanities, is pleased to advertise a PhD scholarship to join Dr Nicole Volmering on her SFI-IRC Pathway Programme project ‘Early Irish Hands: The Development of Writing in Early Ireland’ from September 2022.

The project studies early Irish palaeography and writing techniques based on manuscripts from the earliest stratum of Irish writing (550-900). It aims at contributing to a better understanding of the writing techniques used in early Irish scriptoria and to enable more accurate dating of early manuscripts through an improved understanding of variations in Irish script. In addition, it lays the groundwork for research into Irish-Continental script. This is important because palaeography is one of very few methods available that can help identify where and how a manuscript was made or read. The project takes an inclusive approach to the analysis of writing techniques and underpins traditional graph analysis with research on the material aspects of the manuscript. With this approach the project seeks to place palaeographical analysis on a surer footing and to contribute to the understanding of regional manuscript-making techniques in their insular and European context.

The PhD student will be working on Strand 3 of the project, which involves a case study of the use of Irish script on the continent based on a group of manuscripts from Reichenau. The aim of this Strand is to study the ranges and types of variation in script and writing techniques in the manuscripts selected.

The award provides a unique opportunity to engage in frontier research on manuscript studies carried out at Trinity College Dublin. The successful candidate will be enrolled in the Structured 4-year PhD Programme in the Department of History



  • A Master’s degree / diploma (awarded or pending) or international equivalent (German Staatsexamen, etc.) in a relevant academic area (relevant areas include but are not limited to: Classics, Early Irish, Medieval Studies, History, Manuscript Studies, Digital Humanities, Celtic Studies)

  • Evidence of solid knowledge of Latin

  • Excellent command of English (as per Trinity’s general requirements)


  • Evidence of engagement with manuscript studies

  • Evidence of experience with medieval (Latin and/or insular) palaeography

  • Evidence of experience with Digital Humanities

  • Reading knowledge of German


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The Award consists of a stipend of €18,500 annually plus a travel budget and a €5,750 contribution towards fees.

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