This Ars is an editio princeps of a ninth-century work probably compiled on the Continent by an Irishman. The "author", drawing his words from the mouths of some well-known grammarians (often Priscian, Charisius, Consentius or Virgilius Maro grammaticus), articulates them as the "magister" in his version, albeit rather unsophisticated, of a Socratic dialogue between "magister" and "discipulus." Although the magister quotes the standard grammarians by name, much of the work's interest comes from its similarity in choice of material to other Irish grammars, most notably chat of Clemens Scottus and the unedited grammar in Nancy 317 ff. 1r-52v and Munich Clm 6415 ff. 1r-40v.
The edition serves two principal purposes. First, it provides material for textual criticism of the grammarians whom it quotes. Second, it presents an opportunity to observe a common mind at work. The selection and arrangement of material, as well as the compiler's sometimes limited awareness of its full import, show a man trying to deal with commonplace as well as esoteric material and arrange it in a productive way. ln this sense, the work is a fascinating window into the ninth-century monastery.