Salve Regina – The Chant of the Templars. English Translation

Here is a translation of Salve Regina, first in latin, then in English. My favorite version is performed by Marcel Pérès and his Ensemble Organum, which was recorded in the French abbaye de Fontevraud. Marcel is a scholar and expert in the field of ancient music. Salve Regina is thought to have been written by Hermann of Reichenau, a German 11th-century scholar, composer, music theorist, mathematician and astronomer.

Salve Regina, also known as the Hail Holy Queen, is a Catholic chant that praises the Virgin Mary as the Mother of Mercy and the Queen of Heaven. It is one of the four Marian antiphons that are sung at different seasons of the liturgical year. The Salve Regina is traditionally sung from the feast of the Trinity (the Sunday after Pentecost) until the end of the liturgical year (the Saturday before the first Sunday of Advent).

It is also associated with the Knights Templar, a medieval military order that was founded in the 12th century to protect pilgrims and the Holy Land. The Templars had a special devotion to the Virgin Mary, and they adopted Salve Regina as their anthem. They sang it every evening after Compline, the last prayer of the day, and also before going into battle. The Salve Regina expressed their hope and trust in Mary’s intercession and protection.

Statue of an angel.

The chant has a long and rich musical history, and it has been composed and performed by many famous musicians, such as Gregorian chant, polyphony, and classical music. One of the most well-known versions is the one that was used in the 12th century at the Abbey of Cluny, a Benedictine monastery that was influential in the reform and expansion of monasticism in Europe. This version is also known as the Chant of the Templars, using a manuscript that was originally located in the Basilica of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem, where the Templars had their headquarters.

Latin Lyrics

Salve regina misericordie
Vita dulcedo et spes nostra salve.
Ad te clamamus exules filii Eve.
Ad te suspiramus gementes et flentes
in hac lacrimarum valle.
Eya ergo advocata nostra, illos tuos
misericordes oculos ad nos convente
Et ihesum benedictum fructus ventris tui
nobis post hoc exilium ostende.
O clemens, o pia, o dulcis Maria.

Alpha et omega misit de superis
gloriosum solamen miseris,
cum Gabriel a summa gerarchia
paranimphus dicit in armonia:
Ave Virgo Maria.
O clemens, o pia, o dulcis Maria.

O pastores pro Deu surgite,
quid vidistis de Christo dicite.
Reges Tharsis de stella visione
sint testes in apparitione:
Ave Virgo Maria.
O clemens, o pia, o dulcis Maria.

Fons humilis, aquarum puteus,
rosa mundi, splendor sydereus,
amigdalus Aaron fructuosa,
precantibus esto lux gloriosa:
Ave virgo Maria.
Salve regina misericordie.


English Translation

Hail, Queen of mercy.
Our life, our consolation, and our hope, hail!
To thee we cry, the banished sons of Eve.
To thee we sigh, groaning and weeping,
in this vale of tears.
O thou our advocate, turn on us
thy merciful eyes,
and Jesus, the blessed fruit of thee womb,
show to us after this our exile.
O clement, O pius, O gentle Mary.

The Alpha and Omega sent from on high
a glorious solace to the suffering,
when from the highest rank of angels
the paranymph* Gabriel harmoniously declared:
Hail, Virgin Mary.
O clement, O pius, O gentle Mary.

O sheppards, rise before your God,
relate what you have seen of Christ.
Let the kings of Tharsis bear witness
that they saw the star appear:
Hail, Virgin Mary.
O clement, O pius, O gentle Mary.

Humble fountain, well giving forth
waters, rose of the world, divinge splendour,
fertile rod of Aaron,
be the glorious light of those that prey thee:
Hail, Virgin Mary.
O clement, O pius, O gentle Mary.

*The reference is to the angel Gabriel in the Annunciation.

What do you think?

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  • regina
    August 25, 2014

    O sweet solemn sounds of love. Vibrates with piercing intent.
    Outstanding devotion to Mary our Mother so deserving.


  • Paula DeWit
    February 9, 2016

    Where can I get the sheet music for this?

    • Sanjin Đumišić
      February 10, 2016

      There are many versions of it and Google is the place to start searching at =))

    December 4, 2017


    • Sanjin Đumišić
      December 4, 2017

      Knighthood is a state of character and not limited to the old centuries, so you still have your chance.

  • Jeff
    December 31, 2017

    The focus of the chant is our Lady…model of human perfection. She who loved Christ as a mother loved a son. She who loved God the Father as a wife loves a spouse. She who loved the Holy Ghost as the conception for both the God-man on earth and as the intimate act of love with God the Father and divine spouse. That is the beauty and the meditation of this chant. Deo Gratias.

  • Milan
    August 16, 2018

    Kida, hvala na prevodu.