A detailed analytical and kinetic study of the thermal decomposition of monosilane in the temperature range 375 to 430 $^\circ$C and the initial pressure range 35 to 230 mmHg has been conducted. The gaseous products in the very early stages of the reaction are hydrogen, disilane and trisilane. In addition, later in the reaction a solid silicon hydride is formed, its composition varying as the reaction progresses. The kinetic features of product formation during the first 3% of decomposition have been studied in detail, while those relating to higher extents of decomposition have been investigated less fully. The reaction is accelerated by the addition of certain foreign gases, but is unaffected by packing of the reaction vessel. A tentative mechanism involving the species silene, SiH$_2$, is proposed.