\ \ [16] Dirge is an anglicization of Latin dīrige, the imperative singular of dīrigereguide’ (source of English direct). It is the first word in the Latin version of Psalm 5, verse 8: Dirige, Domīne, Deus meus, in conspectu tuo viam meamDirect, O Lord, my God, my way in thy sight’ (the Authorized Version expands this to ‘Lead me, O Lord, in thy righteousness because of my enemies; make thy way straight before thy face’). This formed an antiphon in the Office of the Dead (the funeral service) and hence came to be associated with songs of mourning, and with gloomy singing in general.

Word origins - 2ed. . 2005.


Look at other dictionaries:

  • Dirge — Dirge, n. [Contraction of Lat. dirige, direct thou (imperative of dirigere), the first word of a funeral hymn (Lat. transl. of Psalm v. 8) beginning, Dirige, Domine, in conspectu tuo vitam meam. See {Direct}, a., and cf. {Dirige}.] A piece of… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Dirge — [də:dʒ] das; , s <aus gleichbed. engl. dirge, entstellt aus lat. Dirige, Domine »Lenke, Herr...«, dem Anfangswort einer mittelalterlichen Totenklage> engl. Bez. für Trauer , Klagegedicht, Klagelied …   Das große Fremdwörterbuch

  • dirge — dirge·ful; dirge; …   English syllables

  • Dirge — (engl., spr. dördsch, entstanden aus lat.: Dirige, Domine Deus meus etc.), Grablied, Totenklage …   Meyers Großes Konversations-Lexikon

  • dirge — index plaint Burton s Legal Thesaurus. William C. Burton. 2006 …   Law dictionary

  • dirge — [də:dʒ US də:rdʒ] n [Date: 1400 1500; : Latin; Origin: dirige guide (the first word of a funeral song), from dirigere; DIRECT1] 1.) a slow sad song sung at a funeral 2.) a song or piece of music that is too slow and boring …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • dirge — [ dɜrdʒ ] noun count a slow sad song often sung at a funeral …   Usage of the words and phrases in modern English

  • dirge — early 13c., dirige (current contracted form is from c.1400), from L. dirige direct! imperative of dirigere to direct, probably from antiphon Dirige, Domine, Deus meus, in conspectu tuo viam meam, Direct, O Lord, my God, my way in thy sight, from… …   Etymology dictionary

  • dirge — [n] sad song chant, coronach, cry, death march, death song, elegy, funeral song, hymn, jeremiad, keen, lament, march, monody, requiem, threnody; concept 595 …   New thesaurus

  • dirge — ► NOUN 1) a lament for the dead, especially one forming part of a funeral rite. 2) a mournful song, piece of music, or sound. ORIGIN from Latin dirige! direct! , the first word of a psalm used in the Latin Office for the Dead …   English terms dictionary

  • dirge — [dʉrj] n. [ME < L dirige, imper. of dirigere, to DIRECT, the first word of an antiphon (Psalm 5:8) in the Office for the Burial of the Dead] 1. a funeral hymn 2. a slow, sad song, poem, or musical composition expressing grief or mourning;… …   English World dictionary

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