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In paradisum

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In paradisum (English: "Into paradise") is an antiphon from the traditional Latin liturgy of the Roman Catholic burial service. It is sung by the choir as the body is being taken out of the church. The text of the In paradisum — with or without the Gregorian melody itself — is sometimes included in musical settings of the Requiem Mass, such as those by Gabriel Fauré and Maurice Duruflé, although liturgically it belongs to the burial service.


In paradisum deducant te Angeli; in tuo adventu suscipiant te martyres, et perducant te in civitatem sanctam Ierusalem. Chorus angelorum te suscipiat, et cum Lazaro quondam paupere æternam habeas requiem.
May angels lead you into paradise; upon your arrival, may the martyrs receive you and lead you to the holy city of Jerusalem. May the ranks of angels receive you, and with Lazarus, the poor man, may you have eternal rest.

In the services for the dead, this antiphon is sung in procession on the way from the final blessing of the corpse in church to the graveyard where burial takes place. The Gregorian melody for In paradisum is in the Mixolydian mode. The special nature of this mode — with its lowered seventh degree, which makes it different from the modern major mode — is heard twice in this melody at cadences on the words Chorus Angelorum and quondam paupere. The melodic highpoint of In paradisum comes on the name of Lazarus, the poor beggar in the Bible who went to heaven while a rich man went to hell.

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