Masonic Dirge

This is the Masonic Dirge associated in Vermont with the Master Mason degree.
It is used, sometimes with different words or verses, in other States.
The words can be found by looking for the first line-
“Solemn strikes the funeral chime”
They were composed by poet Bro. David Vinton in 1816
It is set to the tune known as Pleyel’s Hymn, 1791. Ignaz Pleyel was a student of Joseph Haydn and a Freemason.

Here is a mp3 file you can click and play, or right click and download, to hear the words sung to Pleyel’s hymn tune.

Click to download the Masonic Dirge sung acappella  m4a

Click to download the Masonic Dirge sung acappella  mp3

Below is as a Word doc from TheMasonicTrowel.com and as a jpg from the Mad River Lodge song cards.
For some background on the irony of David Vinton’s Masonic life, see http://srjarchives.tripod.com/1997-08/Davis.htm article from the Indiana Freemason, Spring 1997 issue.
At the bottom of this page, is the three-part harmony music with the top note being the melody/lead.  It can be sung in three parts, or a piano could provide the harmony while everyone sings the melody. Or just use it to review the melody.

Solemn strikes the funeral chime!
Notes of our departing time,
As we journey here below,
On a pilgrimage of woe.

Brothers, now indulge a tear,
For mortality is here!
See how wide her trophies wave,
O’er the slumbers of the grave.

Here another guest we bring,
Seraphs of celestial wing,
To our funeral altar come,
Waft a friend and brother home.

Lord of all, below, above,
Fill our hearts with Truth and Love.
As dissolves our earthly tie,
Take us to Thy Lodge on High.

PLEYEL’S HYMN
(Funeral Dirge for MM Degree)
Composed by Bro Ignaz Joseph Pleyel – 1791
Words by Bro David Vinton – 1816

  1. Solemn strikes the funeral chime.
    Notes of our departing time,
    As we journey here below
    Through a pilgrimage of woe.
  2. Mortals now indulge a tear;
    For mortality is here!
    See how wide her trophies wave
    O’er the slumbers of the grave.
  3. Calm, the good man meets his fate;
    Guards celestial ’round him wait.
    See! he bursts these mortal chains,
    And o’er Death the victory gains.
  4. Here another guest we bring;
    Seraph of Celestial wing,
    To our funeral altar come,
    Waft this friend and brother home.
  5. There enlarged, thy soul shall see,
    What was veiled in mystery;
    Heavenly glories of the place
    Show his maker face to face.
  6. Lord of all! below – above-
    Fill our hearts with truth and love;
    When dissolves our earthly tie,
    Take us to Thy Lodge on High.

Stanzas 1, 4,  and 6 are used by many jurisdictions during funerals and in the Third Degree.
Vermont uses 1, 2, 4, and 6

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