The Latin text is taken from the the St. Gregory Hymnal. The first English version (center), as translated by William Josiah Irons in 1849, replicates the rhyme and metre of the original. The second English version (right) is a more formal equivalence.
|1||Dies irae! Dies illa
Solvet saeclum in favilla:
Teste David cum Sibylla!
|Day of wrath! O day of mourning!
See fulfilled the prophets' warning,
Heaven and earth in ashes burning!
|The day of wrath, that day
Will dissolve the world in ashes
As foretold by David and the sibyl!
|2||Quantus tremor est futurus,
Quando judex est venturus,
Cuncta stricte discussurus!
|Oh, what fear man's bosom rendeth,
when from heaven the Judge descendeth,
on whose sentence all dependeth.
|How much tremor there will be,
when the judge will come,
investigating everything strictly!
|3||Tuba mirum spargens sonum
Per sepulchra regionum,
Coget omnes ante thronum.
|Wondrous sound the trumpet flingeth;
through earth's sepulchers it ringeth;
all before the throne it bringeth.
|The trumpet, scattering a wondrous sound
through the sepulchres of the regions,
will summon all before the throne.
|4||Mors stupebit, et natura,
Cum resurget creatura,
|Death is struck, and nature quaking,
all creation is awaking,
to its Judge an answer making.
|Death and nature will marvel,
when the creature arises,
to respond to the Judge.
|5||Liber scriptus proferetur,
In quo totum continetur,
Unde mundus judicetur.
|Lo! the book, exactly worded,
wherein all hath been recorded:
thence shall judgment be awarded.
|The written book will be brought forth,
in which all is contained,
from which the world shall be judged.
|6||Judex ergo cum sedebit,
Quidquid latet, apparebit:
Nil inultum remanebit.
|When the Judge his seat attaineth,
and each hidden deed arraigneth,
nothing unavenged remaineth.
|When therefore the judge will sit,
whatever hides will appear:
nothing will remain unpunished.
|7||Quid sum miser tunc dicturus?
Quem patronum rogaturus,
Cum vix justus sit securus?
|What shall I, frail man, be pleading?
Who for me be interceding,
when the just are mercy needing?
|What am I, miserable, then to say?
Which patron to ask,
when [even] the just may [only] hardly be sure?
|8||Rex tremendae majestatis,
Qui salvan dos salvas gratis,
Salva me, fons pietatis.
|King of Majesty tremendous,
who dost free salvation send us,
Fount of pity, then befriend us!
|King of tremendous majesty,
who freely savest those that have to be saved,
save me, source of mercy.
|9||Recordare, Jesu pie,
Quod sum causa tuae viae:
Ne me perdas illa die.
|Think, good Jesus, my salvation
cost thy wondrous Incarnation;
leave me not to reprobation!
|Remember, merciful Jesus,
that I am the cause of thy way:
lest thou lose me in that day.
|10||Quaerens me, sedisti lassus:
Redemisti crucem passus:
Tantus labor non sit cassus.
|Faint and weary, thou hast sought me,
on the cross of suffering bought me.
shall such grace be vainly brought me?
|Seeking me, thou sat tired:
thou redeemed [me] having suffered the Cross:
let not so much hardship be lost.
|11||Juste judex ultionis,
Donum fac remissionis
Ante diem rationis.
|Righteous Judge! for sin's pollution
grant thy gift of absolution,
ere the day of retribution.
|Just judge of revenge,
give the gift of remission
before the day of reckoning.
|12||Ingemisco, tamquam reus:
Culpa rubet vultus meus:
Supplicanti parce, Deus.
|Guilty, now I pour my moaning,
all my shame with anguish owning;
spare, O God, thy suppliant groaning!
|I sigh, like the guilty one:
my face reddens in guilt:
Spare the supplicating one, God.
|13||Qui Mariam absolvisti,
Et latronem exaudisti,
Mihi quoque spem dedisti.
|Thou the sinful woman savedst;
thou the dying thief forgavest;
and to me a hope vouchsafest.
|Thou who absolved Mary,
and heardest the robber,
gavest hope to me, too.
|14||Preces meaw non sunt dignae
Sed tu bonus fac benigne,
Ne perenni cremer igne.
|Worthless are my prayers and sighing,
yet, good Lord, in grace complying,
rescue me from fires undying!
|My prayers are not worthy:
however, thou, Good [Lord], do good,
lest I am burned up by eternal fire.
|15||Inter oves locum praesta,
Et ab hoedis me sequestra,
Statuens in parte dextra.
|With thy favored sheep O place me;
nor among the goats abase me;
but to thy right hand upraise me.
|Grant me a place among the sheep,
and take me out from among the goats,
setting me on the right side.
Flammis acribus addictis:
Voca me cum benedictis.
|While the wicked are confounded,
doomed to flames of woe unbounded
call me with thy saints surrounded.
|Once the cursed have been rebuked,
sentenced to acrid flames:
Call thou me with the blessed.
|17||Oro supplex et acclinis,
Cor contritum quasi cinis:
Gere curam mei finis.
|Low I kneel, with heart submission,
see, like ashes, my contrition;
help me in my last condition.
|I meekly and humbly pray,
[my] heart is as crushed as the ashes:
perform the healing of mine end.
|18||Lacrimosa dies illa,
qua resurget ex favilla
Judicandus homo reus:
Huic ergo parce, Deus:
|Ah! that day of tears and mourning!
From the dust of earth returning
man for judgment must prepare him;
Spare, O God, in mercy spare him!
|Tearful will be that day,
on which from the ash arises
the guilty man who is to be judged.
Spare him therefore, God.
|19||Pie Jesu Domine,
dona eis requiem. Amen.
|Lord, all pitying, Jesus blest,
grant them thine eternal rest. Amen.
|Merciful Lord Jesus,|
grant them rest. Amen.