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Dirige
Classical Latin
Church Latin
English
Latin
Manuscript

Dirige Domine in conspectu tvo viam meam
Dīrige, Domine, in cōnspectū tuō viam meam.
O Lord, make your way straight before me.
Introibo in domvm tvam
Intrōībō in domum tuam :
I will enter your house:
adorabo ad templvm sanctvm tvvm in timore tvo
adōrābō ad templum sanctum tuum in timōre tuō.
I will bow down toward your holy temple in awe of you.
Domine deduc me in iustitia tva
Domine, dēdūc mē in jūstitiā tuā :
Lead me, O Lord, in your righteousness
propter inimicos meos dirige in conspectu tvo viam meam
propter inimīcōs meōs dīrige in cōnspectū tuō viam meam.
because of my enemies; make your way straight before me.
Gloria Patri et Filio et Spiritvi Sancto
Glōria Patrī et Fīliō et Spīrituī Sanctō:
Glory [be] to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Ghost.
sicvt erat in principio et nvnc
sīcut erat in prīncipiō et nunc
As it was in the beginning, is now,
et semper et in saecvla saecvlorvm
et semper et in sæcula sæculōrum.
and ever shall be, world without end.
Dirige Domine in conspectu tvo viam meam
Dīrige, Domine, in cōnspectū tuō viam meam.
O Lord, make your way straight before me.

Commentary
The Dirige is an antiphon that opened the Matins service in the Office of the Dead. It has its source in the Psalm 5 as translated in the Vulgate. It is probably the origin of the English noun dirge (according to the Online Etymological Dictionary).

Tolkien included this text together with the Gloria Patri doxology at the end of his poem The Homecoming of Beorhtnoth Beorhthelm’s son, and this is the text we give here. Note that Tolkien used a slightly abbreviated version; the fuller antiphon has Dirige, Domine, Deus meus, in conspectu tuo viam meam.

We have supplemented the text with macrons to mark etymologically long vowels.

The translation given here is made after the translation of the Psalm 5 in the New Revised Standard Version (1989), supplemented by the rendering adopted for the Gloria Patri.

The text’s transcription emulates the capitalis rustica, a style of the Latin alphabet that was in use in the imperial Rome and Late Antiquity for writing on papyrus or parchment with a reed pen. We made use of Hasan Guven’s typeface Vatican Rough Letters.

References
Tolkien, John Ronald Reuel. Tree and Leaf: including Mythopoeia and The Homecoming of Beorhtnoth. London: HarperCollins, 2001. 176 p. ISBN 0-007-10504-5.
The Unbound Bible. 🌍 Biola University, La Mirada (Calif.).
Harper, Douglas. Online Etymological Dictionary. 🌍 Etymonline.

The works of John Ronald Reuel and Christopher Tolkien are under the copyright of their authors and/or rights holders, including their publishers and the Tolkien Estate.
Quotations from other authors, editors and translators mentioned in the bibliography are under the copyright of their publishers, except for those whose copyright term has ended.
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