dirge

[durj]
noun
1.
a funeral song or tune, or one expressing mourning in commemoration of the dead.
2.
any composition resembling such a song or tune in character, as a poem of lament for the dead or solemn, mournful music: Tennyson's dirge for the Duke of Wellington.
3.
a mournful sound resembling a dirge: The autumn wind sang the dirge of summer.
4.
Ecclesiastical. the office of the dead, or the funeral service as sung.

Origin:
1175–1225; Middle English dir(i)ge < Latin: direct, syncopated variant of dīrige (imperative of dīrigere), first word of the antiphon sung in the Latin office of the dead (Psalm V, 8)

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World English Dictionary
dirge (dɜːdʒ)
 
n
1.  a chant of lamentation for the dead
2.  the funeral service in its solemn or sung forms
3.  any mourning song or melody
 
[C13: changed from Latin dīrigē direct (imperative), opening word of the Latin antiphon used in the office of the dead]
 
'dirgeful
 
adj

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

dirge
early 13c., 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 Psalm v:9, which opened the Matins service in the Office of the Dead. Transferred sense of "any funeral
song" is from c.1500.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Example sentences
They wailed and sang dirges as they lined the streets to catch a glimpse of the funeral procession.
His long improvised dirges will ring for ever in my ears.
His virtuosity is on full display here-the band moves effortlessly from dirges to rave-ups to power ballads.
There are younger bands playing modern music for jazz funerals rather than the traditional hymns and dirges.
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