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dirge

dirge (Lat. naenia). Burial or memorial song, often with character of funeral march. Shakespeare's Dirge for Fidele (Cymbeline) has been set by several composers incl. Vaughan Williams (1922) and Finzi (1942). The 15th cent. Lyke-wake Dirge was set by Stravinsky (Cantata 1952), Britten (Serenade 1943), and Whittaker (1924).

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dirge

dirge office of matins for the dead XIII; song of mourning XVI. ME. dirige (later dyrge, derg(i)e), the first word of the L. antiphon to the first psalm in the office: ‘Dirige, Domine, Deus meus, in conspectu tuo viam meam’ Direct, O Lord my God, my way in thy sight; imper. of L. dīrigere DIRECT.

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dirge

dirge / dərj/ • n. a lament for the dead, esp. one forming part of a funeral rite. ∎  a mournful song, piece of music, or poem: singers chanted dirges | fig. the wind howled dirges around the chimney. DERIVATIVES: dirge·ful / -fəl/ adj.

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dirge

dirge a lament for the dead, especially one forming part of a funeral rite. The word comes (in Middle English, denoting the Office for the Dead), from Latin dirige! (imperative) ‘direct!’, the first word of an antiphon (Psalm 5:8) used in the Latin Office for the Dead.

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dirge

dirgeconverge, dirge, diverge, emerge, merge, purge, scourge, serge, splurge, spurge, submerge, surge, urge, verge •demiurge • upsurge • dramaturge •thaumaturge

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