Dona Nobis Pacem (Vaughan Williams)
Dona nobis pacem, (English: Grant us peace), is a cantata written by Ralph Vaughan Williams in 1936 and first performed on 2 October 1936. The work was commissioned to mark the centenary of the Huddersfield Choral Society. Vaughan Williams produced his plea for peace by referring to recent wars during the growing fears of a new one. His texts were taken from the Mass, three poems by Walt Whitman, a political speech, and sections of the Bible. A.V. Butcher has analysed Vaughan Williams' use of the Whitman poems in this composition.
The work is scored for chorus and large orchestra, with soprano and baritone soloists. The phrase Dona nobis pacem ("Give us peace"), in different settings, punctuates the entire piece.