Te Deum

From Academic Kids

Te Deum is an early Christian hymn of praise. Though its authorship is traditionally ascribed to Saints Ambrose and Augustine, on the occasion of the latter's baptism by the former in 387 AD, contemporary scholars doubt this attribution, many assigning it to Nicetas, bishop of Remesiana in the late 4th to early 5th centuries.

Some scholars have suggested that the hymn is the merger of two (or more) earlier hymns: one to God the Father and another to God the Son. Under this schema, the second begins with the phrase Tu rex gloriae, Christe. The petitions at the end of the hymn (beginning Salvum fac populum tuum) are a selection of verses from the book of Psalms, appended subsequently to the original hymn.

The hymn remains in regular use by the Catholic Church, in the Office of Readings found in the Liturgy of the Hours, and for special occasions such as the canonization of a saint. It is also one of the standard canticles in Morning Prayer as prescribed in the Anglican Book of Common Prayer, and is retained by many other churches of the Lutheran and Reformed traditions.

The hymn follows the outline of the Apostles' Creed, mixing a poetic vision of the heavenly liturgy with its declaration of faith. Naming God immediately, the hymn proceeds to name all those who praise and venerate God, from the hierarchy of heavenly creatures to those Christian faithful already in heaven to the Church spread throughout the world. The hymn then returns to its credal formula, naming Christ and recalling his birth, suffering, and glorification. At this point the hymn turns to the subjects declaiming the praise, both the Church in general and the singer in particular, asking for mercy on past sins, protection from future sin, and the hoped-for reunification with the elect.

The text has been set to music by many classical composers, with settings by Anton Bruckner, Hector Berlioz and Antonin Dvorak among the better known. The prelude to Marc-Antoine Charpentier's setting (H.146 in Hugh Wiley Hitchcock's catalogue) is well known in Europe on account of it being used as the theme music for some broadcasts of the European Broadcasting Union, most notably the Eurovision Song Contest.

Latin text and English translation

Te Deum laudamus:                         We praise you, God:
te Dominum confitemur.                    we acknowledge you as Lord.
Te aeternum patrem,                       All the earth venerates you
omnis terra veneratur.                    as the eternal father.

Tibi omnes angeli,                        To you all the angels,
tibi caeli et universae potestates:       to you the heavens and all the powers:
tibi cherubim et seraphim,                to you the cherubim and seraphim
incessabili voce proclamant:              sing with unending voice:
"Sanctus, Sanctus, Sanctus                "Holy, Holy, Holy
Dominus Deus Sabaoth.                     Lord God of hosts.
Pleni sunt caeli et terra                 Heaven and earth are full
maiestatis gloriae tuae."                 of the majesty of your glory."

Te gloriosus Apostolorum chorus,          The glorious chorus of Apostles praises you,
te prophetarum laudabilis numerus,        the praiseworthy number of prophets praises you,
te martyrum candidatus laudat exercitus.  the white-robed army of martyrs praises you.

Te per orbem terrarum                     The holy Church gives witness to you
sancta confitetur Ecclesia,               throughout the whole world
Patrem immensae maiestatis;               as the Father of immense majesty;
venerandum tuum verum et unicum Filium;   your true and only Son who is to be worshipped,
Sanctum quoque Paraclitum Spiritum.       and also the Holy Spirit, the Paraclete.

Tu rex gloriae, Christe.                  O Christ, you are the king of glory.
Tu Patris sempiternus es Filius.          You are the eternal son of the Father.
Tu, ad liberandum suscepturus hominem,    Undertaking to liberate humanity,
non horruisti Virginis uterum.            you did not dread the womb of the Virgin.

Tu, devicto mortis aculeo,                By overcoming the sting of death,
aperuisti credentibus regna caelorum.     you opened the kingdom of heaven to believers.
Tu ad dexteram Dei sedes,                 You sit at the right hand of God,
in gloria Patris.                         in the glory of the Father.

Iudex crederis esse venturus.             We believe you will come as judge.

Te ergo quaesumus, tuis famulis subveni,  Therefore we ask you, assist your servants,
quos pretioso sanguine redemisti.         whom you have redeemed by your precious blood.
Aeterna fac                               Make them to be numbered among the holy ones
cum sanctis tuis in gloria numerari.      in eternal glory.

Salvum fac populum tuum, Domine,          Save your people, Lord,
et benedic hereditati tuae.               and bless your inheritance.
Et rege eos,                              And rule them,
et extolle illos usque in aeternum.       and lift them up into eternity.

Per singulos dies benedicimus te;         We bless you every day;
et laudamus nomen tuum in saeculum,       and we praise your name for ever,
et in saeculum saeculi.                   and throughout all ages.

Dignare, Domine, die isto                 Deign to keep us, O Lord,
sine peccato nos custodire.               without sin this day.
Miserere nostri, Domine,                  Have mercy on us, O Lord,
miserere nostri.                          have mercy on us.

Fiat misericordia tua, Domine, super nos, May your mercy be upon us, O Lord,
quemadmodum speravimus in te.             since we have hoped in you.
In te, Domine, speravi:                   I have hoped in you, O Lord:
non confundar in aeternum.                may I not be confounded for ever.

External links

nl:Te Deum fr:Te Deum

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