Dies irae lyrics

The poem Dies irae dates back to the 13th century. Here are its lyrics.

A picture showing the Last Judgement, which is what the poem Dies irae is based in
Published: September 1, 2022 at 10:52 am

What is Dies irae?

Dies irae is a medieval Latin poem thought to be written by either either Thomas of Celano of the Franciscans (1200–1265)[ or Latino Malabranca Orsini (d. 1294) in the 13th century.

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What is Dies irae about?

Dies irae means 'the Day of Wrath' and the poem is about the Last Judgment, where God decides who enter heaven and who are unsalable and 'cast into eternal flames'.

The final couplet of Dies irae, Pie Jesu, often stands alone from the hymn as a separate song and is often included in musical settings of the Requiem Mass - a service offered for the repose of those who have passed on.

Dies irae has been set to music by numerous composers, including Mozart, Mahler, Rachmaninoff and Liszt. Hector Berlioz used it in his Symphonie fantastique (1830) and his Requiem (1837)

Dies irae lyrics in English

Day of wrath and doom impending!
David's word with Sibyl's blending,
Heaven and earth in ashes ending!

Oh, what fear man's bosom rendeth,
When from heaven the Judge descendeth,
On whose sentence all dependeth.

Wondrous sound the trumpet flingeth;
Through earth's sepulchres it ringeth;
All before the throne it bringeth.

Death is struck, and nature quaking,
All creation is awaking,
To its Judge an answer making.

Lo, the book, exactly worded,
Wherein all hath been recorded,
Thence shall judgement be awarded.

When the Judge his seat attaineth,
And each hidden deed arraigneth,
Nothing unavenged remaineth.

What shall I, frail man, be pleading?
Who for me be interceding,
When the just are mercy needing?

King of Majesty tremendous,
Who dost free salvation send us,
Fount of pity, then befriend us!

Think, kind Jesu! — my salvation
Caused Thy wondrous Incarnation;
Leave me not to reprobation.

Faint and weary, Thou hast sought me,
On the Cross of suffering bought me.
Shall such grace be vainly brought me?

Righteous Judge, for sin's pollution
Grant Thy gift of absolution,
Ere the day of retribution.

Guilty, now I pour my moaning,
All my shame with anguish owning;
Spare, O God, Thy suppliant groaning!

Through the sinful woman shriven,
Through the dying thief forgiven,
Thou to me a hope hast given.

Worthless are my prayers and sighing,
Yet, good Lord, in grace complying,
Rescue me from fires undying.

With Thy sheep a place provide me,
From the goats afar divide me,
To Thy right hand do Thou guide me.

When the wicked are confounded,
Doomed to flames of woe unbounded,
Call me with Thy saints surrounded.

Low I kneel, with heart's submission,
See, like ashes, my contrition,
Help me in my last condition.

Ah! that day of tears and mourning,
From the dust of earth returning
Man for judgement must prepare him,
Spare, O God, in mercy spare him.

Lord, all-pitying, Jesus blest,
Grant them Thine eternal rest. Amen.

Dies iræ original Latin lyrics

Dies iræ, dies illa,
Solvet sæclum in favilla:
Teste David cum Sibylla.

Quantus tremor est futurus,
Quando Iudex est venturus,
Cuncta stricte discussurus!

Tuba, mirum spargens sonum
Per sepulchra regionum,
Coget omnes ante thronum.

Mors stupebit, et natura,
Cum resurget creatura,
Iudicanti responsura.

Liber scriptus proferetur,
In quo totum continetur,
Unde mundus iudicetur.

Iudex ergo cum sedebit,
Quidquid latet, apparebit:
Nil inultum remanebit.

Quid sum miser tunc dicturus?
Quem patronum rogaturus,
Cum vix iustus sit securus?

Rex tremendæ maiestatis,
Qui salvandos salvas gratis,
Salva me, fons pietatis.

Recordare, Iesu pie,
Quod sum causa tuæ viæ:
Ne me perdas illa die.

Quærens me, sedisti lassus:
Redemisti Crucem passus:
Tantus labor non sit cassus.

Iuste Iudex ultionis,
Donum fac remissionis
Ante diem rationis.

Ingemisco, tamquam reus:
Culpa rubet vultus meus:
Supplicanti parce, Deus.

Qui Mariam absolvisti,
Et latronem exaudisti,
Mihi quoque spem dedisti.

Preces meæ non sunt dignæ:
Sed tu bonus fac benigne,
Ne perenni cremer igne.

Inter oves locum præsta,
Et ab hædis me sequestra,
Statuens in parte dextra.

Confutatis maledictis,
Flammis acribus addictis,
Voca me cum benedictis.

Oro supplex et acclinis,
Cor contritum quasi cinis:
Gere curam mei finis.

Lacrimosa dies illa,
Qua resurget ex favílla
Iudicandus homo reus:
Huic ergo parce, Deus:

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Pie Iesu Domine,
Dona eis requiem. Amen

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