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Does Verdi's (or Mozart's) famous Dies Irae draw on the original plainchant melody plaintchant scorein any less obvious way, or does it just use the text?

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No.

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and Giuseppi Verdi were among the composers of religious works who wrote original music on the text of the hymn.

Note: I'm sure someone will come along and claim some group of 3-4 notes in one or both of these pieces might relate to the original chant melody. Of course, lots of such patterns could just occur by chance, as there are only so many notes in the scale, and only so many 3-4 note permutations of notes within a small range (as in the figures of the original chant melody). Suffice it to say that there's no obvious use of the chant melody, and many other composers have similarly just appropriated the words of the Latin sequence.

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