Definition and background:
The Mass for the Dead; it takes its name from the opening words of the Introit, Requiem aeternam dona eis, Domine, meaning, "Rest eternal grant to them, Lord." The current form of the Requiem Mass was established by Pope Pius V in 1570 and the only significant change took place in 1972 when the Dies irae sequence was removed. The Requiem Mass is typically sung on November 2, All Souls' Day for all deceased, however, can be sung at any time in memory of a specific person. It can be sung on the day of burial, and on the third, seventh and 30th days after interment. The Requiem Mass is a Proper Mass that omits certain, more joyful sections ( Gloria, Credo and Alleluia) and adds other sections with a more somber nature. The following sequences may be included: Introit (Requiem Aeternam) Kyrie Eleison Lacrimosa Dies Irae Domine Jesu (Offertorium) Sanctus Benedictus Pie Jesu Agnus Dei Lux Aeternum Libera Me In Paradisum the catholic mass for the dead opens with the words requiem aeternam dona eis, domine (eternal rest grant unto them, o lord), leading to the use of the word requiem for the mass for the dead. Important settings of the requiem include that by Mozart and the large scale settings of the requiem by Berlioz and by Verdi. Brahms set a collection of Lutheran texts to form his German requiem, while Faure set a liturgical text that used parts of the burial service.
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Wikipedia - Glossary of Musical Terminology
Virginia Tech Multimedia Music Dictionary
ORB -- Medieval Music Glossary