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•p/y i-hi.7-L a. {3>t 

Th gijt of 






XVU Tm Th»o Cokkks (cOBtinued)— Th£ Pv>.-imimrmt or 
-TMB Asoav — Mmico LonAHDu— Pxbc Wtu. — Tm 
CoxBVniON OP THE Woai.>— OaTtKiovATiON or thk 

I. Tns TnuD CoaxicK — Am»i (conclnded] — Exn prou 
■nm Swoxa— ExAMPLU t» tmr Puhishhbmt o» Amoim 
— Tii»: AwiiL or PcAcr— Akcckt to the Fol'kth 
GoRsicr. — Tmk Scconiv Nioht in Pvooatorv — Lovs, 
«ccOKDiso TO Vnuiu Tm Root or ju-l Sin as well 

AS 0* ALL VlBttil: .....-_ 

(XVIIl. Titi Poumi CoRxicr—AcctoiE— Thk Natvu or Lov» 
— Lovt *«> P»»r, Win. — SriKiTB or th« Sli^jTHrw, 
HvTftxo tv It&riE, A« Tin Pihutv por Acami^— 
Tme AiaoT OF Sax Zemv — The Scalmbiu—Uahtb 
Pall* Axlvxp ........ 

XIX. Tux Fourth Comnice or Acctoii {concludedy— Daitts'a 
OaKAti or TUB SiKLN— Tut Axvcb or THE Lov« or 
G«p— AicEXT OP THE Fifth Coikici — Tmt Pumaltv 
or TK> AvABtciovB AXo PHoaiaAi^—PorK Ai>niam V. 
— AtAftlA - - . 

XX. TitB FtPTM OVMcicB (conclwded)— AvAKiCK ako Pko- 


HuQM CAmT — Thx Capcham Kixo«, ExAUit-ta or 
SoAtMii AVAUce— The Hoi.tTAiN (Juaiuia uh a Sotii. 


vi RM^ings on Ike Purgaiort'o. 

ouito MM 

XX(, The Picth Conmick {oofitmued)— Avar ice asii> Pbo- 
Dion.irv — AppkARAKCx Of Statiub — ExptAXATio* or 
Titn Cause or t»k EAKTwqiiAKt; — Mkbtiho BeTWEKii 
ViHOiL *»u Staiil's 179 

XXII. AscexT TO TME Sixth Cokkich — SrATtus Relatm 
Ills Sin OP l*«ooiOALiTV — Acp ms Cokvisxiok to 


The SiKTH CoR:*itt— GLUTroKv— THEGi.urioi«op»— 


OF T»MPEHAMCC - - 914 

XXIII. Ths Sixth Corkicc (continued) — Tm PtmcATiox op 

Gl-I/TTOJIV — F.MACIAT8O Appbakahcr of thk Glut- 

TONors— Forms DoKitTt— Dokati— 'Dkmukcia- 
tion or rm Womkn or Fi^rsxcr .... ^4 

XXIV. Tub Sixth CoRMict—GLUiTotrv (continuedj— FoicEsii 


Ukhiciami oi' Lt'tcA— Pope Mahtin IV.— U»At.r>wio 


CHus — Ghmtucca— DcATU on CoMo Ddkati Prk> 
OKTBD— TBI Skond Uystic TktB— CxAMPUa or 

JCXV. Asce»'i lu THB Srventn Coknick— Ektomtiom bv 
STATiui OP THE MVATCRie* OP Mah's FmaT amd 
Skconi) BiRTKi — The Cuvpokkai. Shapss op Souls 
IN PtipoAroHV— Thh Sevemtk Cormice— Pvkkkmbkt 

CkaATITT ...... ... gay 

XXVI. The Sbvuhth Cor.hice— Skkhualitt (continued)— Tub 
PunTVMT» tei Two Bahdk that Move is Oi-»o»ite 
DiaccTiora — Examplxs OiP SKxairALtTV — Qui&O 
OviBtUEL4.i (ok Gviniculu}— Ajik*vi> Damibl • • 369 I 

XXVll. The Sevektb Coekicr— ^enkualitv (concluded)— The 

AxoKi. OP Pi-PfTV— The PaMaoe 1'mrouok the 1 

pLjiiita^ Ascent op the Lmt Stairway — Arrival | 


Contents of Vol. //. 


XXVtII. Twe Eakthlt PAt^nnE— The Rjvm Lbthb— Ma- 

TSLDM Th» WIJIII *.i'I> THB W»TaK IK Tilt Tbk- 

HWimiM. PUAVUR 4)0 

Tms TeuuriLU. Pa.iuduik <cftntinued| — Tiis My«Tic 


XKX. Tn Tmu«rtUL Pailwus (eontiBUMl)~Af>nuitAt«ci 
or BaATKics— Dt«*rv«4KAMcK or Vikoil — Damtb 
SirtuLT Ckmvud bt BMTxrce - • - • 501 

T)H TaBRBtTRiAt. Pajkaduk (cMiiInDcd) — Bkatmigk 
RnvovM DtNTC— Hia pKNirsNCK. C(>»rt»»i<wi, *kd 
Pmorviiitu* — Hu luniuuiaN ik Leriu — He Ib 
CoHiKicna TO thc Hahi)Maidi:x4 op Bsatkio — 
8>ATUCK UffYBiLa HsxatLr to Him - ■ 534 

IXXXIL Tm Tuuun-MiAL Paeadiu (continuc<!)— Thb Thcb 
or KiioarbBiioc— AscxNT or the G"rnto»— Teaks. 
MiftMAnaH or nu Cimimt— The Gunt axd tmk 
lUatOT 565 

XXXm, Tkb TuKuntut. Paiubim (Mmeloded)— Tm« Pito- 
nmct Of BzATKtci — Ttit h'lvn tU-xDREo *«» Tex 

ncATion ......... 003 

Uma «3i 

TiN i>;.3.L.a. ^a^ 

Tk gift of 





IHE TtukD coR^«n^e (omtiwuuuJ-thk punishmknt of the 

TlIK Ullcr part of (he last Canto was devoted to the 
coAftiderstion of how to avoid the sin of Anger. The 
prcMiii Canto treats mainly of its expiation. 

Bcnvenuto divides the Canto into four parts, 

/i Divin<jn I, from vcr. t to vcr. 24, the penalty of 
the Angrj- is described. 

/* Divisitm II, from ver. 25 to ver. 51. Uante con- 
rene* with the spirit of Marco Iximbardo, who during 
bts lifetime had been exceedingly prone tu An(;cr. 

Im Dipiaiam III. fronn ver. 52 to ver. II.|, Dante ques- 
tions Marco about Home remarks that had fallen from 
him rm the general corruption of the World, and Marco 
rcpbet to him. 

/■I DiviiivH IV, from ver. 115 to ver. 145, Marco 
dilates on the deplorable decline of virtue in Lombardy. 

Dirhicm I. — Dean Plumptre says: "The opening 
word* uf the Canto arc deliberately chosen. To be 
caoftcioiu of Wrath is to be in Hell, with all its black- 
neu of darkness, it& bittemes<i and foulness. In the 
remedial methods which Uanic depicts, wc may And 

11. A 

[ Canto xvf. Keadmgs on the Purgatvrw, ^ ^| 

1 Quani' esKF pah di nuv-ol l«n«br«tR, ^^^H 

^^L Non fcce al vi&o mio &] grosao veto,* ^^^^ 
^^H C^ntc quel fummo ch* ivl ci C'>perBe. 3 ^H 
^H Ni 1 tcnitr di cosi uspra pdo ; ^| 
^^B Chi 1' occhio ttarc aperto non oaflcriie : ^^^^| 
^^P Ondc l> Scorta mia saputa c Gda t ^^^H 
^^^ Ui ** acdMt&i e 1' omcro m' offcr&t. ^^^^| 

^H Gloom of Hell, and of a night bereft of ev«r>- Btar ^^H 
^H beneath a barren sky. as much darkened with doudji ^^^| 
^^ aa it can be, did not tnakc to my eyes so dense a veil, ^^^H 
L MM did that smoke which there enshrouded ux, nor of ^^^| 
^K so roogh a lexture to one's sense of feeling; for it ^^^| 
^^1 Rufered not itte eye to remain open ; whetent my ex> ^^^H 
^H perienced and faithful guide drew near to me, and ^^^| 
^F oflcred me his shoulder. ^^^H 

Dante could no longer see Vji^il. The man blinded by ^| 
Ai^er is toully unable to discern Reason. But Virgil, ^| 
tOegorically representing Reason, was able calmly to H 

MNU. r ic pi& mcttra chc qucllo chc ie alcuna tucc." (Buli.) ^H 
Coari iBiUiiii, voL it. p. iSb) explains the word ncll: "Quel ^^^H 
fcnrr tuU' aRor^a 1' i(nmaKtn«. irtotitrando miseria (ic^uily) d' Ognx ^^^H 
Elft ill Uimc. Atx-hv 1 I^^tini iiiRrnnn comr att^ii ojtriAli^'o qucHto ^^^^| 
iw^ diccndn j««^i a^Ktf, imi^ uiiiixi (scofagKi"*") inofis (oniilU ^^M 
(cteMM « partttu da prcndcic), etc" S4:ant(£/ini (uhcK^invr to ^| 
rcfct tn thr Itnitrd amauni of iky that one can tee when lookinK ^H 
•p (r«R> A nutrow t'allcy. ^^^H 
* tf . Gcnvrnutu coftitnmd* ihtK stinik. for he taya ^^^^| 
that a ^ - ' -:allv biith liRht and (raniparcnt, lo that a pcison ^^^^| 
»arw( n can built sec thioueh it, brcaitie through it, and feci ^H 
i) «f ■ tOlt tenure tn the nkin : whereax ihiK Kmoke blinded the ^M 
cw». chttfced the tnealh, amt imt^itcd the tkin. "And note, how ^M 
oBfly Dante hu> ft|ir«»ented this, for, in truth, no ntn is com' ^| 
^^■kttd anong ihc llvtn£. or is punished in Hell aiDon^ the dead, ^| 
H^BlBh m much darkens the even af the intcl[i:<.t an Angcri and ^B 
iMlltwi he hai dnnr wrll to drpict the an^ry in Hell [earing and ^M 
fcailiec each nther barbarously wtih iheir icelh." ^M 
t la^atii t jitLt ■ V ' '>-> VitK'l here reprocnti theoretic ^H 
Kra^ti, which ■■ if ' nceil {ia(iuta) in nut allowiii); itBclf ^H 
MhK deceived, and i<ti<>i>.j i/>ifii}in never deceiving. Tommafia ^| 
abian ai thai the word mf-tiu is iiill uted in tbeNcapoliian dialect, ^H 
ift « CMd HOW. ^^^H 

A 2 ^^^1 

Canto WI. Readings on the Purftalario. 

Even as a blind man kock behinil his (fuide in order 
nol t« go astra V, or to Imoclf against ou^ht ihat mxy 
hurt or even kill him ; so went I through that pun- 
genl ami foul nir, listening to my Lciider, who mc-icly 
said: "Txlce heed that thou dost not f-et |>aitcd 

from me." 

benvenuto points out that the angrj- man is worse off 
than the blind, for the latter only loses his bodily »ighi, 
while his mental perception \% prt^iiervcd to him and 
even rendered more sensitive, but the angry man loses 
the light ti( Reason. Accoidinj; to Livy, the Romans 
Uni0iX a^inict the Samnites with such ferocity that 
their e>t-s literally denied to blaze, and such was their 
fury that, after they had won the victor)', they turned 
their swords against the horses, 

l>aote now describes the devout prayer of the shades 
o( the Aogf)-. 


\o kenlia i-oci, c ciaticuna psrcva 

PrcKor. per pacf e per miscricordia. 
I,' AgnrI di [>UN chc Ic f>cecBla * leva. 

Pure Agn»i Dei eraa le laro csordw : t 

* fitcalit fur ftttali ; Ninnucci {Turma Jri S'emi, p. ytj) nay! 

thai t*. in the rvrly days of the Italian Un);uu};c, Ihcrc wao vQmc 

iMtcciuon •» \o the terminations to be adopted for nouns, the 

vritnT nt !hnt time tned eivinK Ki the jilurnU uf miutis of 

r ' n thr nine trrmlnnti'in tn i Ihm they in 

! '.rulton in If to others that were derived Iron) 

1 11.% aiii! in the Tinil indtanuc llicy used to say i itrt'i, 

I rr^na. i fontfiimnila, i;h itlificM, etc. Hui «c find ko 

'. les ot the term inaii tin in it, thvl it it i-vidcnt it very 

nin complete dtxtiii.-. Nanntiici ciies instances from 

' i 'tgnai in Pra (tuilonr; i fmcia m Itactiarnnc di 

!^; It fttrtilti (rum ViM t Miyjtoti Ji .V, Matin 

• riirt from the S«nnon» ol Via. tiiotdano; i 

.iittoiic, etc. 

- iJiinte moM have uKcd the Latin neuter plural 

«l ti^dimm here. Compare Virgil, Jin. iv, iS^ : — 
" qua: prima oiordia itumat 'r " 


Readings ott the Purgatorio. Canto xvt.l 

Onde i1 Muefttro mio ditae :—" Rispontli, 
M ()nman<Jji Me quincl *i \» due." — 
Hd io :— " O creatura,* chc li mnntlJ, 

Per larn*T f bclla a colui chv ti fccc, 
Maiaviiclia uclirai kc mi stcondi."— 
— "Io ti KcguiterA qunnto mi Icce," — 

Kitpoac ; — "c sc vcdcr fummo non laacia, 
L'udir cilcrrft giunti in quellji vccc," — 

Whereu[ion my Master Haid to me: "Answer 
thou, and ask if it is in that direction that one 
attccnds." And I : " O BcifiR that art makinc thyself 
pure, so as to return beautiful to Him Who created 
thee, if thou wilt accompany nic, thou shalt hear a 
marvellouathin^;." " I will follow ihce." he answered, 
"for so fur an it is ijvrinitted nic; and if the Hniolce 
permits not our Heein^, in its stead shall hearing keep 
uft together." 

In obedience to this invitation, tacitly expressed by' 
Marco, Dante tells him he U alive, and, in so tnany 
words, begs him not to be astonished at his walking 
alive through Turgatory, as he has already passed alive 
through Hell. Bcnvenuto thinks his words arc equiva- 
lent tu saying: " In my ttlil^olIn.■ juuiney through Hell 
I acquired the knowledge which I sought of my sins, 
and now 1 am going to get them purged away iaj 

signifying the firxt day of the nmnlh, i» ii^>inctiinct, as in this 
paMagc, utiei) figura lively to Bignify a inunth. CompsTe Arionto, 
Orl, I'ur. canto xixiii. a?: — ■ 

" V. ben gti aisac L' anno c le calcnde." ' 

*U itiittura, ihc fi maudi : Giabefti adtnireii the appropriate 
and couttcous exortU.% Milh which Uantc (ircfacts his uddrcMcx to 
some <>r the xptrits in Puigatory. C»n)|>Brc t'urg. xux, 85-^7: — 

"'O gcnic aicura,' 
Incominciai. ' di %'Cdcr I' alto lunit 
Chi- il dmio vostro solo lia in tua cura,' " etc. 
t /Vf lori/tr: Compnri- liifU*. xii, 7: "Then nh»U the dust 
return to the earth as it was; and the npiril chall rciurii unto 
God who K<ivc iL" Cumpatc alM> II. Rfr-cjo »f llli^ Canto : — 

Cafito XVI. RtadiHg% on the Purgahn'o. 

AUcMii tnnminciai : — "Con quclla fkacin * 
Che la morte diiiwilvc t men vi> ituttQ, 
E vennt qui per ia infertialc smbascu ; 

K se [ Dt» in* hM in bun graxta richiuso 

Tanio cbc vuol ch* ia vciQgia la sua coTtc 
f er rnpdo tulto (uor del mndcrn* u%o,§ 

Non mi ccUt chi r'nti iinfi la tnune, 

Md ililini, c ilimmt k* la vo bene mL varco; || 
E lut parulc hen IcddmIic scortc."-^ 

Then 1 began: "With ihosc swHthin^- bands (i.e. 
b(Kly) which death will (hcrcnftcrjdiiisoK'C I am going 
my way upwurdK, and 1 have tome hither through 
the xnguish of Hell : and since Ooil has so greatly 
enfolded me in HiH (imce, ^k to M'lll that I ithould 
bebuid Hta Court, by a rnudc cniiiely loreign la our 



^*' L* ■Dima seinplkvitH, che »» null», 

Salva che, in««xa da Ucto fatiorc, 
Volcnticr Inrna a cib chc la irustulla." 
* ' [.I Dante mtiinit the mortHl body, which is miin't 

»* . -nd or inlcRument while he is alive. 

Compare -i Co*, v, t : " For wc know that if our 
n ..-■col thiilubcrnacle wcrediotiolvcd, wt have a building 

oC liod, a hoascrrat made with haiidK, eternal in (he heavens." 
And J Tim. i\. 6 Of* ihc I'als^li): ■' Ego enim jam di'libor, « 
Ij lutionio mcw ioMal." 

iixnotu says thut it ia here to be taken in the scrtacoF 
fMj. .- i'lh»t it IS not conilitiofiat but dcclarativci 

■nd br . cmniplct of its unc in itic Mrnsc of itcaust, 

i(aM;cU. ».iiT[Ti ..u- Petiarch, pan li, non. Iixxviii. U. n — 
" Unmmi, Si^nor, chc 'I rttin dir giunga al segno 
Dcile luc tnde. iive |^«r si nnn sale; 
6V vcriu, k; txlIA non ebhv vguiile 
il mondn, chc d' aicrlei nan fu dtgno." 
AUe faif . 3CS. j"-3<) :— 

" ^•nfl fia >cn<a tnerc^ la tua namla, 

S' io rilafnii a compi^r In laminin eorto 
Pi guclla vita ehc al icnninc voU." 
fmtJtjv' aw ■ Conifatc In/ ii, tya. whi re Diinlr enpresics to 
VtfXU hu iirn»c nt unwuilhineiiii ojf viaiimi; iht- kingdoms ii( iIm: 
dewdlwfatch before him had only been viHited by .l^ncjik and St. 

fMNu.-t lit. xii, t6:~ 

li'accorlo Kiidj^: 'Corti al varvo: 
Ucittic ch' i in fuHa £ tmon che lu li calc* " 

zo Rmiings im the Purgaioric. Canto XVI. 

modern usage, do not hide from me whD thou wast 
before thy death, but tell it mc, and tell me also if 1 
ani on the right way to the pass (above) ; and let thy 
words be out escort." 

Fraticelli explains line 4a to mean that the mode was 
totally difTerent to the U5;ual routine, which would re- 
quire death to precede the possibility of ascending to 
Heaven, but Benvenuto, Lana and But! all interpret 
the passage as meaning that, under the Influence of 
the earlier Kenaissance, it had gone completely out of 
fashion for poets to describe a vision in which they 
ascended up to Heaven. Besides JEneas and St- Paul, 
there were many records of a like pilgrimage in the 
visions of ancient monks and hermits, as for instance, 
St. Alberigoand St. Urandan. 

Marco now names himBclf; but whether we arc to 
understand his name to be Marco Lombardo, tn the 
sense understood by Boccaccio, who calls him Marco di 
Ca dci Lombard! da Vinegia, or whether simply as an 
Italian from Loinbardy, it is not easy (says Lubin) to 
determine. There are different accounts about him. 
Wc may at once dismiss the idea of his being the navi- 
gator Marco Polo, who survived Uantc, and died 1323. 
All seem to agree that he was a Venetian nobleman, 
a man of wtt and learning, and a friend of Dante. 
/,' Olti»u> tells us that nearly all he gained, he spent in 
charity. Benvenuto that he was a man of a noble mind, 
but disdainful, and easily moved to anger. Buti that 
he was a Venetian, and bis name was Marco Daca ; he 
was a verj- learned man, had many political virtues, and 
was vcr>' courteous, giving to poor noblemen all that he 
gained, and he gained much : for he was a cotirticr, and 
was much beloved for his virtue, and much was given 

Canto Kvi. Readingi on the Purgatorio. 


him b>- the nobilitv ; and as he gave to those who were 
in need, so he lent to all who asked him. And when 
he wa% at the point of death, having much still owing 
to him, he made a will, and, among other bequests, this, 
that whi>ever owed him aught, should not be held to pay 
the debt, " Let whoever has," said he, " keep."* 

Having answered DanteV first question by telling him 
who he u-as. Marco then answers his second question 
H to the correctness of the way the Poets arc pursuing, 
Bod then add!^ a petition on his account 

— " Lombarilo fai, c fui chiamAla Marco: 

Del mondo xcppi. f c quel vjilfircarnai 
Al quale ha or ciatcun divicso I' arco :{ 
P«r moflt«r *u§ diriltamente vaL"— 

Cosl rispoK ; c aoggiunM :— " lo ti prego 50 

Cbe per me preKtii, quando so uirai." — 

*'l«-aaa Lombard (or, oneof the Lombard) Eainily) 
and was called Marco. Iknew(the wayB)oftheworId, 

• The following anecdote of Marco It related in the Noi^Uiao 
(Sokvlla xxxviiif : "Marco I^nmbardo fuc una n»bilc unmo ili 
octtc c owlto tavio. Fua un Naiak a una citti dove si donuvano 
■ottc robe, c non cbbv neuna. Trovd tin altrti vnmo di toTtc, lo 
fiaJc er% ncKiente persona ippo Marco, e avea avutc robe th>ul 
ntiitni CAriiifiMi Ktllt]. I)i qucalo nacquc iina bclla i,L-nlcii«in ; 
tki ncllo ^iullarc (^ii^'>i'n) dJuiK a Marco: *i;hc i cit^ Miuco, 
CA' r ho avulo net tc robe lu non niuitu ? V. >c' Uoppo ( far anii >iii'a/> I 
■iclMHe unmoc piii savto ch' io non aono.' E Marco ritpoir: 
*Mn i altro, t« non che (u Irovasti pm di tuoi ch' to rii mi«' (il 
tlf mammt, thai yoa JitanJ iniiiv ftrt/mi of youf Uitinf, i^ JooU, iJmn 
Itfmin^ i*. vitt avn)." 

ffh/ matUa upfi : BtaipoU : " scppi i bci costumi, uti. c ncgozj 

i ihttw f ana: TttKUu t ttft«: mearts "10 bend a bow," 
t^mitr* r mrco it the contrary, namely " lo unbend, la un^lrtng a 

i I'er mt\Htar tu : Notice the difference between the mcanin^^s of 
m la this line, which means up to the Foutlh Cornice, and I. 51, 
vfcttf fm^Mita m uirai Dieana when thou shall have reached 


Reading on the Pur^aiorio. Canto XVI, 

and I loved ihal virtue (from aiming) nt which now-a- 
i*yi hjis every one unstrung bis bow: for mounting 
upwardii lht)u srt going rightly." Thus he answered ; 
and added : " I bcKcech thee thiit when thuu shall he 
above {i.e. in l*aradi»c), thou wil: pray for me," 

Division III. — In the long and difficult passage which 
now follows, Dante, having heard Marco deploring the 
open hostility to virtue, and the general corruption that 
prevailed throughout all Italy, and remembering also the 
words of Guido del Duca on the same subject (Canto xiv), 
asks Marco why this is so. He prefaces his question by 
a prupitiaiory assurance that, when he reaches Heaven, j 
he: will do what Marco had asked him. 

^ io a lui :— " Per fede mi li lego 

Di fiir ci?> che mi chtcdi : ma la vcoppio 
Dcniro a un dubbio, s' io nan mc ne spicgo.* 

Prima cr« s.c(:(n{ito,f cd or* I fatto dopp!o 
Nclla ftcnteiiui ma,, che mi (a cerlu 
Qui cd altrovc, qucllo ov* io 1' accoppio. 

And I to him: "I pledge thee my faith to perform 
what thnu askcHt nic ; but I am bursting with an in- 
ward doubt, if 1 do net free myself of it. It was »t 
first a simple (dotibtj, and now it has become a 
double one, from thine (expression of) opinion, which 

*!* to RAR mf tie if^igo: Biiti enptnins this: ''Creperei, a' Jo 
non 1' aprisnc; c peri diet: »' to ■on mi* nt %f'ire<\ cioi »' io non 
mc nc dichiaru, cioi a' it< non me nv apiu e apaccio, clic sona 
implicilo in cmio." The Vm. (ktia Crusfa, s.v. ifiegatt, 5 5. says : 
" E in iignifit. nvulr. fan.. Lilurvni," ami quotes this paxsai^e in 

i Prima rr<i utmfjo, ct *cti. '. Biiicioli ihinktt the w<*rds should be 
taken In the follo<hin); order : "it min dubbio era sccmpio prima 
che lu mi paria:iBi. i>ra e lalto iloppionclla(ovvciu/rr/4i>»cnici)/u 
Itia. Ill quale, qui inclk- (.mc udile qui da te), tti attnnr (in quelle 
uditt' ultiovf, ocl pm-irdtnte Cunto), uii/i»r<r/(i{mi diniostra esncr 
un falto Lcrto) ifutll" ll' uditn attrnve) vi'' i> I' Mroffiit (al qiinic loj 
uriioco)." Stvmfio tHdrrivcd from ilie L^atin sim^irt, and the t 
ikila Cniva luiyn nl it : "Contrano di doppio." 

Canto XVI. ficadiags on the Purgalono. 13 

both here (in thy words) and elsewhere (in Guide's) 
h«9 made that (doubt) into a certainly, when I couple 
ihc two toffcthcr. 

Bantc shou-s here how greatly the rciteralion by Marco 
of opinions previously expressed by Guido del Duca has 
inBucnLcd him to ask the question. The two opinions 
of Marco and Guido put tiigelhcr seem lo harmonize, 
n BK to strengthen in Dante's mind the duubt as to 
whence comes such great wickedness in men, whether 
tmm celestial influences ur from innate corruption. 

I follow Benvenuto in referring fu<;//o in I. 57 to Juhbio; 
"ekt mi Ja c-ewio qudto, scilicet dubium ; itaquod siprimo 
cndeban]. nunc videor mihi cerlus." 

Danle now tells Marco what is this doubt of his, end 
repeats and confirms Marco's previously uttered 

ncnt. that %'irtuc is so banished from the world. 

Lo Biando t ben cmi tuiin discno 

D' OBoi virtutc. coini" lu mi suoo*,* 

E di CDiilifia gravjdo c copcrio :t 60 

Un prcco cbc m* kddiii | la caiponc. 

Si ch' io la ve)u;u, e ch' io la motiiri alliui ; 

Chk ncl cicio una. vd un <]uaggi(l U pone.* 

*tmmitai mitmtmt: Buti : "cioi, come lu, Marco, mi dkine la 
tuk •entcnxia.'' Stmart has various mcanint;s, but nearly all Ate 
ID the neuter nenic. In tlic active benbe, however, Dantc um:» it 
tasiCOify " T'im, cclebnilc" Sec /'wrX' lit 109*111: — 

"C< 'el cainoiin &l poco piglia 

I'lrunri A tnt, TofCAttA Mn6 tulta. 
Rd ora a pens in Sicnn ten pii^jiigtia." 
tmf. lit, tag: — 

'- U«n poDi Baper omai chc 11 suo dir suona." 

_ apt no: Benvcnuin observec that wickeHne&s grows much 

I (be umc f^y lh;it larcu »prcud t|uickly «ll over a field, and 

tknke the flood wheat. Compaie y«6 tv, 3) : '' They conceive 

WKlucf. and bnns Itfith vanity, and their belly picpoieib deceit." 

Aad 1 J^n •■. In : '" The *thritf world licih in wle^it■d^e^l^*■ 

I m' »J4i' '\i SILK'S : "ptuDriHineiite midxUrt i moMrare, 

-ttocnl venna acl dilo ; pu.-^iidi spo^liarc d 


Readings on Ikt Purgittorio. Canto XVI. 

The world is in truth, as utterly devoid of all virtue, 
as thou teltcst mc, and is pregnxnt with all ivickedncsii 
and overspread by it: but I be^ of thee to point out 
tome the cause, in order thai I mav discern it, and 
explain it to others; for one places it in heaven [i.t. 
the planets), nnd another places it down here (m. on 

This laiit clause means that sin comes to Man by his 
free will. This latter (saytt Kenvenuto} is the healthy 
opinion, the true one to be cultivated by all. whereas, 
to ascribe the wickedness of men to planetary influcncea 
is altogether erroneous.* 

Marco answers Dante's question at considerable 
IctiRth, but he begins by uttering a deep sigh, as though 
he would say (thinks Itcnvcnuto) : "O what a wrong 
and mischievous opinion this is of ascribing the wicked- 
ness of the world to the influence of heavenly bodies.** 

Alto »o»pir, chc duolo atrinic in — " hui,"*' — 

Mite luor prima, e poi comincijt: — "Prate, 65 
Lo mondo i cieco, e tu vicn ben da lui. 

qneito accidente : ma gli rcsta por non so che form di pin del 
sctnplicc Mi'stran." .IJJi/awisthc reiciilariiliomati!: »i>rd for "to 
point out."' in I'uscany. " Would yuu point out to me la Sladanma 
litlU S^^gioUr-'" Mi vorrcbbc uJditare la Madonna dclla Sc^iola." 

* Un thi» vnoncflUH belief, sec 0/anani, Dante tt la Pkilcnopbu 
Cathotiiiur, Puriii, iSjij, p. 135 : " Une opinion commune ct irom- 
peokc attribuc tous nos tictcs A des aatrct. comme si Ic ciel 
cntraJnail touslcn ftrci dans unc direction nfoctsairc. L« etc) 
excrcc sans doulc unc sortc d'initiativc sur la plupart dca mouve* 
meats dr notrc Mtimlnlitt ; mais icttc initiative peut rcncontrer 
en noi»» une resistance qui. taboticusc d'»bord, devifnt invincible 
apris avoir lid^lcmcnt combaltu. Unc plus grande, 
cell« de Ditu, agil s»r n«u» sanx noun cnntraindrr. Kn noui JI a 
cr£c ccltc partic mtillcurc dc nou>-ni<ni». qui n'est point soumiac 
aui influences du cicl. II nou> a d6parti la volonte tibrt: et ce 
don, le plus excdlent, le plus digne dc la bontt, le plux pr^cicux 
A acB rcgardH, (oute» lea criatiirck iniclligcntct, vt cIIch bcuIck, 
Ton I re9tt," 

t Am : The Vof. (bth CVmco hat : Uui Quells voce, cbe bI 
manda fuori per qualche doioic. Lat. kt-u. Greek <^u. Boti 

Canto x\i. Readings i>n tk/ Purgaiorio. 


Adeepsish'wl>ichgri€ffortedinto(thecfy) "Ahm« ! " 
he Arst hea^td forth, and ihen bcj;an : " Brother, Ihe 
world It blind, and Ihoa in Irutb comesl from it. 

Beavenato says, in proof of the world being blind, (hat 
many who are reputed great sages, were in that blind 
ilporance, thai they took everylblng as coming from 
Deccs»ity, not perceiving that things foreseen by God 
cut be altered by ihe exercise of Ihe Free Will that He 
bas given to man. In like manner Cicero, in wishing 
to avoid one error, fell into another, for he denied 
Providence, for which St. Augustine censures him 
tevercly in hi& book, De CiviUtte Dei. 

Bcntenuio also comments on the words e tit vieit hen 
dm lai, by supposing Marco to say : " And thou evidently 
tamctt from this world of blindness, for thou admittest 
that ihit doubt is ko great in thy mind that thou art 
nearly burnting with it." 

Marco next explains what is this doubt of the blind. 

Vol che vivete, ogni cagion rcculc • 
Par lUMi fll ciel, co«i came k Intio 
Uovcaae i«co di ncccasitatc. i 

^ it: " DooIa MtrjaM in Awi, imperocchi nan 

ai n<r:Tcrc fuora tutlo il kotipjro, ma finillc inquc«tat voce 

Cbc t taUnc^lif Jj-itnih, cmt »ocr chc iicuifica dolore." The 

lulian fann ■■ lykimi I Compare OWd. Metam. x, 31$, 

" Imc «3m i;vmtitu fotitn inscribit : ct AI Al 
Flo* hibet inscnptum." 
AadTasM^ Gtw. Libtr. x», slq6: — 

*'Alfin worcarvdo un lacrimivio rivo, 
In na uuiguido atmc [>roruppc." 
* nfiam ratMU . . . altui: In Homer, On/yii. t, ja-^ Jove i« 
■idc to 9»\ I— 

"*a wiwm, •b* ill »* 9tvis ^fporol dtritevrm * 

*4»»m*uiitt : Wc And tn Hoclthiu*, Contoi. /'*iW v, pros. U: 
'iat in h»t hacrcnliam aibi acric cauurum. catnc bIIa noctri 

i6 ReadiMgs en the Purgatoria. Canto xvi. 

Ye who are livinR, assiin^ evCT>" cause up to the 
heavens only, ns though tlicy of neccttsity moved »ll 
things with thefn»elvcs. 

Benveruto states that Sentca used often to quote a say- 
ing of Che ancient Stoic philosopher Cleanthcs : Fata 
vnlfntem ductmi, HoUnUm Irahitnt, which is the exact 
opposite of Ihe cvruneous views which Marco censures, 
for Cleanlhes slimv» that some future things ai*c neces- 
sary, from having their predeterminate causes, as for 
instance that man muKt die. that the Sun must rise to- 
morrow ; while other things may depend nn some con- 
tin>icncy which may or may not lake place. And 
Benvenuto goes on to ^ow the opinion of Plotiaus and 

Arbitrii Itbertas. an ipHos quoquc humanarum motuii animorum 
{ftUliA catena cnnMrinKit ? Eat ini|uit. Neqiic cnim fucrit ull> 
TuiHinali?! nsturjt ([uin cidcni tibc^Tr»« iKlsit arbilrii. N»rn iguod 
rationc uti nalurnliter polcMt, id habel judicium quo quodquc 
cliiccrnat pi-T ic : ieitur lugiEnda optandatc dignoncit. Quod wio 
quis opt^ndum judical esfie. pclil; refuKit vera ^und cxislimat 
ease fuijicndum. Qujiir {|uibuH inc»t ruTio, ipitis ciium incst 
volcndi nolcndiquu libcros^ S«d hanc nnn in omnibus icquam 
CiiM; const! tuo. NamBupcrnisdiviniaquc &ubHtanTii& d pcrapicai 
jltdtcium. ft inkrurrujitn ^oiumav et ellicHx ciptatDrum prtCKto est 
potcBtas. Huniafiiis vcro snjma> libetiorcs (|uidciTi ctisc neccuc 
Mt cum nc in rocnita divine spvculationc convcn-nnt : uiinut vcro 
cum di1ati<.inlur ad corpora, minusqtir cliam, cum lcfT«ni»iiriubus 
collicanlur. Hxttcmo vcro est scTvitUN. cuni vitiiii dcdilac, raiionis 
proprjx posGCBHionr cetidcrint. N.itn ubi oculos a summip luce 
vctitntix ad inCerioru. et lenebroia dejecerint, mox in«cilix nube 
cdigant, pcrntcioKis turbanlur affcctibus : quibu» acccdcndo, con- 
ttnticnduquct qu"m invcxcrc ftlbi, adjuval Kcoitutcm, ct sunt 
quodam modo propria libcrtatc captiva. Qus tamcn illc, ab 
xlemo cuncta pro»picicn». Pfovid«nliaf cernil iiiiuilus. el suit 
quMUc m«riti« pmdcKlinata cIi*ponit (ut de Sole ait Homcrav, 
lliaa, I")." Compare alius Milton, Par. ijfsl, ii, 557-561 :— 
"Others apart snt on a hill rctir'd. 

In thoLiKntii more ct«va(e, and rcason'd hieh 

Of [itovidence, (orcd now ledge, will, and fate; 

FixttI Calc, free «ill, fore know k-dRc absolute; 

And lound no end, in wandering ma/ca Unt" 

Canto XVI. Rudingi <m tht Purgaton'o. 


Qlbcn, ihal the planets were not active agents to bring 
good or evi], but were only (he signs, of things about to 
hippeti to us. Others ha\-e said that some good or evil 
would happen to man by the influence of the planets, not 
bowevcr »u that it must happen of ncces&ity, but in order 
that what Nature, or God lhrout;Ii Nature-, works, should 
take place through the influence of the planets. St. 
Aocinline has treated this very fully in his fifth book of 
0* Ciritatt Dri. 

Uaixo strongly condemns this error, on account of the 
great inconvenience that would follow it. 

Se ce«l fa«»e, in voi (&r» duirullo jq 

Libero ^rbitno.* t non tdra ifiuMiHa, 
Per b«n letiuo, c per m«le aver tutto. 

Were th» true, nil Free Will would be destroyed in 
yoa. «nd it would not (then) be justice to have joy (in 
rcqaitAl) Ebr fEood, and grtef for evil. 

Tbere would be no necessity for Hell, Purgaton* or 
Paradise, says ]i«nvenuto, and all koo^ counsels and 
pn\~crs would be in vain, and many other consequences 

*Lilv- -•*<■'"• ^* ^, Thom. Aq''fn. Summ, Thtoi. psrsi, qu. 
err. mt: Lcndum quod corporac(rlci>iia in corpnri 

fsHfetr -■'^ et |i«r «e. in vife» lulcni aniinic iju* 

■MS m: ri:>rurn cofii"fri>iuiTi. dinrcl^ quidem, tvA per kt- 

qAow .cc»m f^i li'jiuBirodi Hctui hnrum pvlcni iu rum 

•fctei accundiim nii ' ■ uigAiYoruni. ntcut oculus lurtialua 

•MbeiMiidi-t I'r ' llccturt L-t volunlst Fftscnt vires cor* 

pmn one*' '>-^' pODurrunt aliqui diccnlcii, quod in- 

lri>»vliii D(i ■•ii\ fx ncccBiitiitc MqiKTctur quod cor- 

fm% UBlc»4i* tM*4i: cau-m ckclmnum ci Bctuom hunianonim ; rt 
tt hoc icqucrclur quod homo luiltirali inntinctu ancretur uil suos 
KEJaact, neat aitm anim^lia. in qitibfis non lunt niti vires 
■An* gatyar ei i or^nia allisatjc : nam illud quad lit in iui> in- 
fcfMnb^. ''>nr c«rporum culc^liuni, n»turaliter Agilur : 

e «• •> ' Ikkbu non cKsct libcn aibiti .1, «ed )iabcrct 

I ii.i*, Mcul M iTBtcrK rcn nulunilca ; qius tnanl- 
' I cttnvcruiwni humsne cootr'Tia." 



Reactings on Ike Purgatorio. Canto xvi. 

destructive to the world would follow from this, as 
iJoothlus shows in his fifth book.* 

Marco now begins to explain a\\'ay Dante's doubts, 
first, by showing how things come by heavenly influence 
or the contrary. 

IjO cicio i vontri movimenli ini*ia,t 

Non dico tutti : ma. po»lo ch' io il dtca, 
Lumc v* i ditto > bene cd a malUiR, 


•Thv ptaMige referred to in Bocthiut^ is in lib. v, proit. iii; "At 
noM illud demo 11 Ml rare niumur, quoquc modi> se»c hab«at onto 
causamm, nccc&Earium esse cvcnium prxsci m rcrum, ctiam &i 
pnescienliB (ulurit rebus eveniendi necesMtatciti non videatur in- 
tcrrc. Etcnim m quifipinin scdcnt, npinioncm qu> cum mcdttv 
cnnjcctut, veram t-s^c neccsse e»t: at e convcrso rursus »i de 
qunpinm t'cronit npitiio, quoninm scdel, cum -icdcic ncccMV cut- 
in utroquc i^ilur nccvasLlaa incHt : in hoc quidcni Hcdcndi, at vcro 
in altero vcntalix. Sed non idcircQ quisque Kcdet, quoniam vert 
e«t opinio: &ed hvc potiut vci^ cut, quoniam qucmpiam «:dcrc 
prmccRMt. Iia cum causa vcritntis ex nltcrii parte proccdni, tnest 
lamen comuniit tti utraquc nccc»«ilBt>. Simitia dc Providcntix, 
ruIurJNquc rebus ratiiicinari oportcl, Nnm cti««i ni idcirco, quf^ 
niamfutuiaGunl, providcntur; non vlto idea quoniam provideniur, 
ct-cniunt : nibilominuH lamen a Deo vcl vcntura pmvidcri, \c) prn- 
viva cvcnirc nrcease est ; qund «d peiimcndam arbiirii libi-rlnlcm 
M>lum Htttis cut" See also Ptir. xvii, J7-42:— 

" La continf;enn. che fuor del qundcrnu 
Delia vQstra materia non i^i ttcnde, 
Ttitta i dipinia ncl i:o»pett» dcrno. 
NecesKitik peri quindi non prcndc, 

Se non come Jal viao in che si speccbia, 
Nave chc per corrcnlc gi& dinccnde." 

^ LocUio i ivilri mooitnenli iniiui ; According to the avtrological 
bcliei in the Middle Ages, evcr^'lhin); on earth is subject to the 
influence of the planets. Sec /'fir. xiii. 6i-6b. Evcr>' one of the 
hravenK ia endowed with a particular power, which ktndleii the first 
appctileiv in us. Uanle doex not deny the action of the plancl»i 
but only the ncccssilj' ofobryinf; t)iclr influence. Man is tndowcd 
with free vrill, by means of whitb he cm curb hi« desires 01 direct 
tbcin 10 what isKood. (Scartajtzini.) Contpaic St. Tliom. Aquin. 
S»mm. Tktoi. pars ii, 2<)', qu. xcv, art. 5 : " Undc corpora cwlottia 


Canto XVI. Reading on the {*urgaUmo. ig 

C tlbtro vol«r, chc. k fitica 

Ndlc prinic bAtUKlic col civl dura,* 
Poi vincc tuilv, oc ben )i nutrico. 

The heavens ^t> give the first impulBe to your movc- 
meotv, I do not say all : but, even supposing that I 
did sajr il, light been fiiven you (to discern) be- 
tween righi »nil wronj;, und Free Will, which, even 
ihoueh it comhHis against fatigue, in the end eains « 
complete victory, if only il nourishes itself well. 

The first impulusof Man are bodily; as walking, sitting, 
etc : but the movements of the mind were not supposed 
lofilU under planetary influences, hucIi as would be, to 
snderstand. to will. etc. Man's good ii;^ht is by resist' 
ftsce to the sins to which he is most easily predisposed, 
ind for this combat he must cive to his Free Will the 
autrimcnt of Wisdom, Love, and Virtue. 

ScartA2iini observes that, if we recapitulate what 
tfarco explains from I. &7, we obtain the followini; points, 
u belictxd by Dante. 

I. Men seek to excuse their evil actions by attri- 
botini; the cause to ptanetar\ influences, as though 
they were driven by occe^sity. 

OEB fowiurt eiv? prt tr i:au«> opermlionuni llbcri arbiirii ; poRtunt 
iiin lit b incltnarc, inqiuinlum impHiiiunt in cur- 

pMfanmaoui ' ".'r;t)rt^- iTi vices M.'n«iitvsK,(iuz \unt actus 

IHWililliii ur£Anur-,iiis ^ '^nt id hum.irns ncuift." 

*w/»<Wi . . • tfii'a . i''> Mini.) sa)s thai efiinirf in only 

lard b^ Danic in lhi« nnc pbviHi^c in ihr sense of " lo rcBiat." In 
tlttt kcn*e II IS ci?d M- Rrrni. lirl. Iimam. caiilo ix, »l. luiii: — 
"Ms i.kdnr Ik t'la divAfa. 

Pur non la puo Jorare.'' 

tet at- "J m the Pn'trmium lo ibc fir»t Novel 

iGictfTt. <) niuno Callo ni [toircmmn ntii, chc vi- 

nwb iT.t^cDUti >n i^tc c chc mamn parte <i' ct>»c, durare ni 
fipMtci. •« ifNual eraiia di Dio foria c awtiiimcnlo non ci 


B 2 


Readings on ike Purgatorio. Canto xvi. 

2. Such a doctrine dcKtroys Free Will, and accusci: 
of injustice that God, Who rewards good and punishes 

3. It is true that the planetary influences instil 
into Man his first inclinations, though not all. for 
some take their origin in the evil habits that have 
been contracted. 

4. If Man will only make use of the light of Reason 
and Revelation, as also of his Free Will, he can and 
ouf^ht to be able to resist planetary influences, or 
natural inclinations to evil. 

5. This resistance is at the first exceedingly hard 
and laborious ; yet 

6. Man can succeed in complelely overcoming the 
planetary influences if only his h'ree Will gets properly 
nourished (ben si ttulrica) with the food of wisdom and 
of grace. 

Marco next shows that if men arc subject to pla- 
netaiy influences, they are. in their freedom, subject 
to the Kreater mishl of God. to that belter nature, 
which, through baptism or otherwise, they may claim 
as His gift to them. Dante solves the problem that 
has vexed the souls of men in all a^es., and leaves 
them with the ^Hl of freedom, and therefore the 
burden of responsibility. Thitiughoul he follows St. 
Thomas Aquinas, as the latter had folio St 

A m&ggtnr for^a ed « miglior nalurx 

Lb nvente in voi, ch« il cmI non h« In sua cura.* 

*ittifl not ha im sua twra : Accordinf; to I.onerdlow, Plolemy 
is Buppoiicd to have said : " The wisv ni»n shall control the 
6Urs." Aivd » Turkish proverb iiayt:-- 

Canto xvt. Readings on the Purgaiorio. 


Though free, v-e af« subject to x mightier force, and 
to a better nature (Ood's own), nnd thut creates in 
j^oo jrour mind, which the tieavens have not under 
their control. 

Marco having condemned the first pari of the dis- 
tioctran k& fal^^e — namely, that all lhin;;s must happen 
of neccuily — concludes that the second part must be 
Inic, and thul the wtck«dn«s<t of the world lies in the 
feneration now living in the world, and not in the 


Pcn> M il tnoodo pmcnto diavia, 

In voi * £ Im cftgioiM, ia voi m ehc^iK. 

** Wit and a iirone will are taiKHor tn fate." 
l ha »» »u to rvmark* that it it Inn abnurd In Auppobc ihnt Man la 
■■rftrthc (nfiocncr u( ihc planets, when one may more rcuMinubl)- 
■pfrtii ihal the planetii wen- ireaied on account ol Man. He 
-ffiTf-i. la (.ondrmaiion of ihik. a >tory which he curtHiders a 
tnt tnorry rycic. Nvil lonx before (here tlnurithcd in ihccitfof 
rVillia . '' "o ric Abano, a di&liiif;unheil philiMophcf, asiro- 

\yft ^ lan, tvhu al one time held ihit pcrnicioui doc- 

tnar *.•'■'- '">. bcmi; very angry nlth hii servant who had 
c«aM hovne Utc. h< wanted lo bml him. but the who 
fas xtTf intelligent. **tA with rracly wit: "My Master and 
l.«nl, I <ua(r« UutI 1 h«*e done wrong ; hut pray condescend 
(0 hear one word [r<'ni inc, before ihoa t;ivcal me my well- 
lawirnJ pumihmcr.i. I have often tirard ihee mv thai all 
riw ft im npireaaiiy : hrtw Ihen cituld I come home more 
:fu, more aii};rv than ever, cxclairncd. while 
i'> atUk ; "And it in neeci<ar>', Ihciu k*"^''"'* 
wiUbc >cr^*nt. that I tthould eive thee a ROod bcaiini; far 
tlHBC maolence." Tlic tervaiit, nothing; daunled. laying his 
kMkd «pc*a hta itaccrr, uid: "And ecrtain)^, in>rnKute Mat^tcr, 
a m i wT-T*a rr fnr me to burj this in thine cntrailk." I'car 
HB|n ■'■>, am) t>c ouid : "Thnu nhatl always 

n \i wilt: and I promUc thee lliat 1 will 

agafn ni'in ir !< ih"»e diKiiincn." 
* /• Mt.- Thl* ntcan*. in defect* for whkh lh« free willadlie 
ymcm (cacralMm b rc*|mnable. 

32 Readings on the Purgaiorio. Caato XVL 

Ed in te ne surt or vera *|>i«.* 

Hence, if the prciient gcReration got* astmy, in your- 
Hclveit iH the cauxe, in yourHclvci^ inusit it be sought, 
and I will now he to ihec a true expounder of the 

Scartazzini (in his Edizione Minors) fi^ives a very lucid 
re.iutiu' of this p3tisaH;e, Marco has said, ihat men 
ihcmstlvcs arc in fault if the present j^cncnition of 
them wanders from the right path. The human mouI 
issues full of innocence out of the hands of its Maker, 
and instinctively turns to what seems to it mo&t sancti- 
fying and beautiful. As soon as it has begun to taste 
worldy poods it runs after tlicm, dcludinj^ itself that it 
will find in them the highest g<M)d, unless some trust- 
worthy guide directs it to the Sublimest Excellence, or 
unless some curb be found lo restrain it from running 
after deceptive joys. But at the present day the laws 
have become inuperative, because the Chief Pastor 
of the Church continues to show a bad example, and 
mixes up spiritual with temporal matters. This per- 
nicious government of the world is the cause of 
corruption that Dante seeks to investigate, and not 
any influence of the planets, or even the wickedness 
of the human race. 

The point insisted on is the usurpation by the Pope 
of functions that rightly belong to the Rmpcior, but 
have been by him neglected. 

• tpiii : The l'(v. J.H.I C'liita (5 ! I cxplaliiH this as " Chiunque 
rifcrificc : Latin dtUtlvr, narmtor.'' Prxticclli snyji thai, in 
ancient V*c, the wonl h»<l nol Ihc snint- irnidiinlti »cit*c Itiul it 
has now. ScBTta/iini interprets. " vcracc indKntorc, tnfilcira- 
tore." Compare Sliakeipcart. A'ififf Ltiir. act v, sc, 3 :- - 
"And ukc upon'K I he m^lery nl thingi^ 
A» if vrc were Go(l'» xpicft." 

Canto xvt. Rtadingi on the Purgalcrio. 

Ekc di Runoa Lui.'che ti. nghcggiat 
Prima che ii«, a CuJM di ranciuDo, 
Che piatiKCftdo e ridcndo patKolciucia, 

L' amtn« scmpltcctUi chc sa nulla.} 

*B»t Ji (Bdno a Imi , , . L' Aittm* tanpHctlta, el acq.: 
QlMbcru, in hn commcntxry on this pMugc, considers xh\% i« one 
of tbc OKMt (Itvjnc touches in the Dirina C»mm(iiia. The picture 
il higUy draiDHlti:. willioul any mythalo|;)'> *nci only icpletc 
Mh tnm pociry. an<l philvunphic meaning The uylc i& as 
■M*— »V c'^acirfuL and beauiiful uh it well can be. 1( »ccini as 
Ihaagll itw iancKcncc and bciiuty of Ihe toul described by Dante 
it alko unMTtcd 14 tu» dct»cripli>-<i power*. How ever did Ihai 
ftcrc* maa tembk l>antr, t» unappn>ach«blc in hiti power to 
Mnifjr or lo move la Icah, acquire such a marvcllouK ^racc of 
b«B* and caacepttAns ? Mete we have a new affinity between 
Dairtc and Shakebpcare : between Dante's hotrors and benutica 
OB die one hand, and the tonttaMs such as bhiikeapearc gieatcs 
to wc m Ariel and Caliban in rhi Ttmpnl. lioth I'ocis have a 
■tancllnus kirtdtrtl power of fe{i men tint; with an unrivalled 
ksttd the mcMt oppooite iiubjecia, and of creating their niaKtcr- 
Mffcca from the ntotl itiiLini; cuntrasts. . . . ThuHe of Dante 
Bar* aaaurcdly a rcMinbUncc lo those of Shakeipearc, who, in 
the wibbine, the pathetic, the (atctiuuii, the terrible, the gro- 
tawDC. the horrible, thr lovcable. the Kracelul, itw comic, and 
ia tW •>*lini=al, la always lubtimc- 

t •^fcq^irf J Of this verb the Vcf. iltlli Cmsea says that it 
olkcr Bteana, a* in this p«»»aKC, whtch j» quoted, "State a 
liautar fiMincnle coti dilctto e con atlcnuionc I' ainatii, Lut. 
imtfutn :" or, "Fare all* amnro = to court, to 
('> " 1 have preferred tKc former mciining o( the 
'th arc adoplcJ by different Iranalatora. In tbc 
Toplate*," compare Pur, riii, ii, ta: — 
' i'it;hii\anc> il vocjtiol dclla Stella 
( i!.- il M>| vaxhcKciu or dacoppa or da ciglioL*' 


Ihs n< 


tat dr. 
tin*. . 

la A ragheKKiar nell' arte 

Dt nuel maestro. 

,,1 ai.JJ'.i .^i:;.>r*ini: to Fniticelli, Dante. In stating that 

I nuthin;:, shows that he followed 

*.ics, who said that the humiin soul, 

. (juii, tn made apt to Itain I'vcrythint;, 

-ve any knnwltdce or innitte idcaji. .And 

IB ilie most probable and Keneral opinion. 

^hi the contrarv, holdinK thai the k>u1. b^Ri 

tta tnaUct ul lU tmlion, ban in itself ihc gcnnt of knowledge. 

24 Readings em the Purgatorio. Canto X) 

Sth'o chc, cnossa da lieto fittorc, 
Volenticr lamk tk c'A chc U trAstulItt.* 90 

Di picciul bene in pria »cn1c saporc ; 

Quivi a' inganna. t dietro ad csaocorre, 
Sc guida o frcn non torcc suo ajoorc. 

Forth from the hand of Him, Who conlemplate& itj 
with delight ere it even exiBts, like to a little maid^ 
that cries and luu^hs in her childish sport, issues the 
soul, Hti simple that it knows Rolhing. save that, set 
in motion by a blithe Creator, it eagerly turns to that 
which K'vcs it pleasure. 0( tcitling fjood at first it 
tastes the savour; herein it deceives itself (mistaking 

which in time are developed and bcouglil out bv instruction or 
■tud^. Dante alio followed ihc doctrine of St. Tnomss AquiRas 
[5hiiiM. Tktot. pan. 1, tgu. Ixxxiv), which is too long ttowcvcr to 
qoote here. 

♦ VoltittiiT tor»a a ciA iht la tnulutlM: The new soul turns in- 
•tinctiiely to all that appears to charm it. It hn* not yet acquired 
idcai. Cotnpare with thi» the beautiful pastage in Ccnv, 
iv, 11, II. t,st^)76: " II sornmo dcMderio di viancuna COM, c prima 
dslla Naluia dato, i \o Titomarc al ruo Principln. E perocchi 
IddiD ^ Princtpio delle no>.lre aniine e Pattore di t|uelle stmili a 
•£, ticcom' i scritlo: * Facciamo 1' unmo ad imagine c ximi- 
glianxa nostra'; cesa aninia ma^Birnamcntc dcsidcfH tornare a 
qucllo. E uccnmc pcrc^ino che va per una via per la quale 
noD fu. che ogni casa chc da lungi vcdc, crcde che sia I' alberKO, 
e non tmvando cif) esserr, dirizia la crcdenza all' alira, e cnsl di 
easa in caua tanto chc all* albcr^o vienc; cosi I' anima nostra, 
inconiancnic cbe ncl nuovo c mat non failo cammino di qucsia 
vita cntra, diri/iia gli occhi al lermiiic dct tuo Soinmn Bene, c 
pi-rA (lualunquc cusu vedc, chc paia avcrc tn ȣ alcun bene, 
crede chcsiae«ao. E pcich^ la sua conoscem prima ^ imper. 
fetta, per non eitere xperta n^ dottrinata, piccioli beni )c paiono 
grandi; e pcr& da quviti comincia prima n dcsidcrare. Onde 
vedcmo li purvuli dexiJcrarc maasimamk-nic un pomo; c pi>i piu 
ullrc procedendo, dc»idcrarc uno uccellino; c poi piii oltre, 
desjdcrarc bello vesiimento; e poi il cavallo, e poi una donrtn : 
t pot le ricchcj^c non icrandi, poi grandi, e pni Kiandihuimc. 
E quc&tu tncunlru porchJ in n lla di qucBte cove trova qucllo che 
va ccrcando, t credcio iro%are piii oltrc. I'cr die vcdcre ai 
puotc cbe r uno dcaidcrabilc sia dinanti all' aliro agli occhi 
didia nostra nntma per modo quaui pirnmidale, cli^ 'I ininimo 
li copre prima tulli, cd i ^uudi punia dvll' ultimo dcaiderabile, 
ch' i Uio, (juasi baie di tutti.*' 

Canto XVI. Readings on t/u Purgatorio. 25 ^| 

the c^tificadoa of the senses Tor the highe»l good) ^| 
uul runft after it, unless (some wise) guide or restrain. ^M 
ing curb turn not it& desire (to better things). ^^ 

Ben%*cnato, taking this passage nearly in its literal ^^| 

sense, gives some intimate details of infantile delights, ^^^H 
beginning with a baby's finit impressions of its first ^^H 
Marm bath, and tracing its nursery experiences up to ^M 
tbe time when the full-grown man seeks greedily after ^M 
riches., nest after honour, glory, fame : and thence ^M 
hUtDg into pride and envy. Praticelli explains it ^M 
eiiiirely all^orically ; by guitUt he undcriitands cdu- ^M 
cstion, and hyjrtn, the restraints of the law. ^M 
Marco adds that for this reason the law was in- ^^H 
vented, and a shepherd given to the flock ^^H 

Onde c«nvennc legge per frcn porre ; ^H 
CoQvciuM ngc * AVer, ctie diicrracsse gj ^M 
PclU acra ciluilc t ali'icn la lorrv. ^H 

*r«pf : Tlic Emperor. .MlhnuKh Rcn^'entilo triex to cxpUin ^H 
tlw «« ineaamG a --pintual ruler, who should by hts (etching ^H 
4m !■!■ to mer ihr mublimily ol bliks in the Ktcrnal C'il}' of CioA, ^H 
Bsti, Luta, Kraltcrlli >nd othcts itay Ihal il became ni-<;cn>ar)- ^H 
la haic « rvlci «ho ahduld make men observe the Iuwh, and ^H 
«fad, 11 alt ctmii in a ecncral w«y, should have such under- ^H 
UtUt^nc of the real gaoi a* lo know ihntiujkticc is the bulwark ^H 
Md drfmec of ihv ctrrnal city. Kult obbervcb: ** I..ct the Ruler ^H 
kaow that iihat f;(urd> our rationaJrty i* justice, and if he can- ^H 
net kni/w alt the utiier ipecm ul virtucn. let him at least have a ^H 
(CBCfxl Lrunrledjic of Ihem . . . All Kcnitcnicn arc not philo- ^H 
■a^er*. UKwuh, from beint; pluced altuvc other* they niD^hl lo ^H 
fc»;bot. at fe*«t. Ihcy oiif-ht to have Ihcir intellects duponcrd ^^^H 
ttfmv ' '' ', >■><) this it shnwn bv Danic makinj^ Marco ^^^^H 
lank Netni: ibc cause o[ t)ic cortuiitinn ol iIk worM."^^^^! 
ban[v iif^M. i, II, 13 ; at«nC«vii'. Iv, 4. ^^^H 

#•*- '>n this AadreolL m hia commentary, observcS'^^^H 
t^t t>> •■>-, 1" '.'"ni*, ». n, divider life iota ti>'i> citiea, MiC of ^^^H 
nod irfe, and Ihe other ul wtcted life tfulliwlDg Si. Augualine'a ^H 
Msitaoa al !■ C*tU ill Ihv, and la C'lfM liti i>Mif(</«>, and rn ^H 
ttw pammmB DftBte mcani 10 uy ihni o( the good city : ti is the ^H 
dMy of tAc Eiaperar to |>oint out the bulwarks; for Uante ^H 

36 Readings on the Purgatario. Canto xvi, 

Kcncc it bccnmc necessary to establish lawH »b a 
restraining bit, ti became nece«s;iry to have a Monarch, 
who nhould ihnceiri at tcunt the Kvu-ctm of the true 

Marco, having declared that laws are necessary to 
direct men to what is good, next upbraids the rulers 
who administer the laws in word only, but not in deed ; 
the connequencc of which is general depravity. In the 
lines that follow Hcnvenuto notices the c:clraordinary 
power that Marco exhibits of saying biting things 
<OiVi( ergo Marcus qui c^otisuevcrat in vita betu scire 

Lc Icggi Bon, ma chi pon mano ail cttsc ? 
Nullo; perocchi il pastor chc precede 
Ruminar* pud, tna non hn 1' unj|;hie fcssc. 

The laws exist. l)ut who sets a hand to them (r>. who 
sees TO their obscrvuncc) ? No one; because the shep- 
herd who takes prccecicncc (in Pontifical dignity), 
can chew the cud, but does not divide the hoof, 

Bcnvcnuto contends that Dante means the modem 
Shepherd, the Pope, chewing the cud in the sense of 
havinj; the law of God consuntly on his lips, and 
fully discussing it. In truth Boniface VIII had a 
thorough knowledge of the laws and the Holy Scrip- 

«lway* held th&t the imiierixl pawcr sheutd new oi-erstep the 
tlniitH uf (he *uprc<nc direction if the univcriui! mnnarrhy. 

* Rwmintir : " Uieu dtfrndii aux HibicuJi de nc nourrir 
d'aucun snimal qui nc rumin6i, cl n'c&l Ivs nngles Tenduv 
{Lit: *i). Selon leu iniet|>rele« de I'Eerilure, It riimttr, dans 
Ic sens myiiliijiu'. niKnifie In riircim", et Itii'^gUi fenJus, VKiion. 
Applittuant telle imaK^ i l> doctrim- di*'i-lo(ip<« par lui dan* 
son tivrc Oe MoiHtnhid, Diintc dit ^ae Ic t'.ii>tcur qui pricidci 
Ic I'Mpc, dont In fonctiun est la plu\ noble, peut riKin'ii.:). c'cst- 
i-dite prfparcr I'slimi'iit Kpiritiirl poui le corps de 1h kipubliqiic 
chreticnne, mala qu'il n'« pun la oigla findut. uu Ic pouvoif 
lemporcl, lequcl appmicnt h. I'tlmpcfcur." (t<*isennaU.) 

Caoto XVL Readings ott the Purgaiorio. 


toro. and wrote treatiaes on canonical law, but did 
tMt divide the temporal power Trom the spiritual, but 
rather canlounded the two. 

Slarco then proceeds, from the above premises, to 
ioler the conclusion wtiich he had been ];ra<lually 
developing, viz. : that Ihc wickedness of the Shepherd 
t& the principal cause of the perversion of ihe world. 

The Papacy becomes a temporal and worldly power, 
after worldly good, and clergy and laity alike 
' its example. 

Prr the U Rente, che nut giiids v«dc too 

Pur* a quel ben* Tthrc imd' ell' i ^'''^I'a' 
I>t quel u p*mK<. r pii oltrc nan chicdc. 

Den puoi vcilcr t ctK la mala condoiu 

E U cdKitn chc il momia hji f4itl't rco. 

E non niiura «lie in vol sia cuir^ptta. 105 

On this account the people, who sec their guide 
aiminji: only at those (temporal) goodsi (or which they 
Arc ca^cr, fceil (in their turn) on the saine, and ask 
for r-'"'-„' further. Well cansi thou perceive that 
cv. . tncc is the cause that has made the world 

ipjiju , iiTid not that nature is corrupt in you. 

What Marco would say is : " From what I have set 
(brth, you can now recognise that the cause of the world 
bctnjc M) empty of virtue, and m> charged with vice, 

r Tfais incait* earthly powtessbna. In aotne old 
ttpnJ! uuhcal vcnca the (filluwing lines iquotcd by Long- 

'At) lMDp« p.< 

CroMc dc ). 

Maintei • - ■ 

' 'Uh d'or, 

;,irii| ka Ims, 
lie Jc bdiii'' 
..--,..■ Iti. 11; "They ore vhfph<rd» 
tbcj aU loot tn tlmii own «'ay, cvcty 
M.tHi.i" And l/t. i, '1; "My people 
iCTiU havr tauicd ihem 10 ko 
: _i jy i>n the ii'duiitjinv" 


Readings on the Pitrgalorio. Canto xvi. 

cannot be attributed cither to the influence of the planets 
or to the corruption of human nature, but to the evil 
guidance, and bad gcivcrnment of the world." 

Marco now gives a kind of retrospect nf the early 
Empiri:, of wliich Dante also speaks (CoMvito, iv, 6) as 
a golden age. Perhaps the period of the Antonincs is 
meant, when the Emperor ruled righteously in temporal 
things, and the successor of St. Peter exercised an 
independent authority over the Church in spiritual 
thinj^s. But the endowment of the Church of Rome by 
Constantine had spoiled everj'lhing. 

Solcva Rnma, chc il buon mnndo leo,* 

Due Soli tatxr, the V unn e 1' altra slrada 

* Htima, cbe it huon momin/ea: Compurc C'our. iv, 5, II. ib'iti 
"Volrndo la smisurabilc BoniA divina I' um^tna erratum a &fc 
riconrormare. chc per lopeccato clell» prevancaxione del printo 
uotno da Din era pnclita c disformata. clrtto fii in quell' aliiMiimo 
c conpuntiBsimu ContiBtoro divino dclla Tririti, chc I' Fif;liuolo 
di l}lo in terra disccndcssc a fare qucstfl Concordia. E pcrocchi 
nella sua venuta nel mondo. ncMi solantentc il Ci«lo, ma la Terra 
cAftveniva csMre in ottima diaposixinnc : c U ottirna i)iiipoi>ition« 
ilclla Term kiu quand'olla i Monorchia, cioi lulla ha uno Principe, 
come dcitd i di sopra; ordinato fu per lo divino Pro^'vctiiincnto 
quello popolo c quclU citlil chc eld dovea compicrr, c'tot la 
>;lori(iMi Kumu." 

+ /'u( Sell, (.'It. : ThiK. which is the Icadinj; theory (nays 
PhUtiltltus'i in Dante's pulilical syiletn, he brir)i;ii rvut verv fofv-ibly 
in the following pjrssa(;c in the Dt A/i'«iirr*«<i, lii, t(t, II. i.|-8i: 
" .^d hujui niitcm intellii;cntiain ncii-ndum i|uf»l homo %olus in 
rntibiis tenet mcdiuin eornipiibilium et incorruptihiliun); propter 
quod Tccte a philosophi* adsimiliitur horiinjrli. qui est medium 
duitrum hem isphae riorum. Mam homo. «i loni-iderelur nc^iindum 
mi-tiTKluc partem esseutialeni, scilicet aninmm ct corpgs : cofrup- 
ti(>ili>oit. M contidereiur tanlumaccunduniunarr. scilicet animam, 
incoTTuplibilia eit. Propter quod bene Philotophufi inquit de ipaj. 
pfnut incorrnpliblliK est, in Ke<:uiido dc Anima, quiim dixit: * 1^1 
aolum hoc coniingil separar!, tanquam perpcluum. a corrupiibili.' 
K crRo homo tncdium quoftdam cM comipltbilium, ct tncocrup- 
libilium. quurti omnc medium sapiat naturam cxtrcmortim : rcccsne 
est hummem sapcre utramquc iiaturam. Kt quum oinnts nutura 
ad ullimun) qucndam finem onlinctur, conecquitur ut hominia 

I XVI. Readings an the Purgatorio. 


P*cc«B vcd«rc,* e del mondo c di D«o. 

Rome, which made the world good (*./. reformed it) 
WAS used to have two Suns, that pointed out the one 
uvd the olber way, the (Emperor) that of the world, 
»nd (Ihc Hope) that of God. 

tnxco then goes on to »how that it is the cupidity and 
ambition of the Shepherd that has destroyed this har- 

Joplci fin]* mi»Ut. ul ucut inter omnia entin ttAu* incorruptibili- 
talcm et c<irrapli!iililatcm [larliripdt ; ne HntuK inUr omnia cntix 
IB ilur ■ "i — ^ irJinctur; quorum altcium sit (inis cjut, proul 
conur 1 : iltdoin wro, prout corruptibjli^. Duos iKttur 

ft^— I . ^..iii itU eiuuTsbilia homini prupiiKutl intendcndos ; 

h' rn BCiItcri huju* vitx, quK in npcrAtionc piopnw 

fi::-.,.- _ -ntntil. el per terrestrem ParadiBum (iguralur; ct 
bcAMBdiDcm viiK Ktcmic. quic con&istii in fruitionc divini 
t»f«cla> ad quam |itiipria vinu* a«ccndcrc non point, nisi lumine 
4hiiio aditita. qu« per farariisum corlrstrm intclli^ datur. Ad 
Itai qutdnn bc^tiludincs, vclul ad diverssB concluiiones, per 
d(>cr«a iB«di> rcnirc oportct. Nam ad pnm>-im per philosophica 
_AKitnwnta venimua, ditto modo tlliiscqiiamur. Kcuiiduin virtulo 
ri intrllecluain nperanJo. Ad sccundam vcro per 
cnia apintuttliA, qax humanam rationcrr Iranscendunt, 
ilfrtlii tlU •rquamur »ct:un'lun) virtutci Ihcnlogiciis opcrando, 
rUii*. Spen K-ilirrl cl Caritatcni. Has igiiur concluMonca vt 
■Mriia fflKt ' < ^int nobin hm. ab hunvana ratiQne, qux per 

pUoaoplK 'his innotuii ; hxc a Spirilu Sancio, qui per 

n^K~' j:;ir>i^aphM, qui per co-xtcmutn xibi Dm Filitim 

J W W. >. rl per rjui clt*i;i|iuIo». kiipcrnaluralem vcrilaCcn 

ae tMH». iit.t.v>»arwin rcvclavil) humanu cupiditas poHletgafet, 
■■a baounca UMqum rqui, aua bolialitutc vu^dntca, in camo Ct 
Ipiae r."'-™-*^'»"i''K '" •!,< I'r.ijijrr quod opu* fuit homini 
iaftk.- i-A Itnem: u:ilicct aummn 

Hntat: ...,_. ^' ■ ] lunum i^cnua ^tcrducerct ad 

titsiR *temain : ct ImpcrJlore. i]Ui Kuiundurn philaxaphica docu- 
■BBiLi i:t:irji hu-i'iinu-r. jil !ctii;io<'atciri Iclicilatcm dingcfct." 

*r : ■» rtdtTf- The two powers utirkcd 

kaad weal, and Benvcnulo mys this was 

lb> c> 'iii« wa* Ernperor and Sytvc!iter Pope; 

frhmt jfcror and Agapilii* Pope; uhcn Charlc- 

■i(l»< .till Adrun ['ope. On iliia Ciobcitt remarks 

jnhui "Whul a mind must Dame havi; had, to rise 

■pastieduoiouluuthat werein Laleflimts developed b)- Bouuel, 
Ul aa »fx wbcn * t^ontivry Qpirimi) prevailed evcrj-wherc I " 


lieailin^v on Ou Purfjaloria. Canto XVI. 

V un r altro ha, spento ; ed h K>unU la spada 

Col pastornle, e 1' un con I' ultra insicmc no 

Per viva (or/a nial convicn che vadii ; 
Perocchi, giunti, I' un 1' nltro non teme. 

Sc non tni cicdi, pon menu alia MpigSi 

Ch' ngni crba %i conoscc per io Heme. 

Tlie one has qucncbed the other ; and the sword is 
joined to the crosier, and the two lo^iethcr inuiit of 
necessity go ill ; for when joined, the one no longer 
fears the other. If thou dost not believe me, con- 
sider tlie full grown ear of com, for eveiy plnni is 
known by its seed, 

The last line is from St. LuVe vi, 44. Mnrco means 
that, if Dante wants tn know the cause of the world . 
goiDK astray, he will find it in the confu&Ion of the two fl 
powers, and let him look at the bad habits that arc the 
fruit of a disuidcred civil j^ovcrnmeni. From the strife 
between the Pope and the Emperor Frederick 11, 
Lombardy, the flower of Italy, was tieai'Iy annihilated. 

Division IV. — In confirmatiuR of what he haK said 
before, Marco now ^ons on to describe the great change 
that lias come over l>unibardy, which, in consequence 
ofthe above-mentioned strife between Pope and Kmperor, 
has lost all its advantages, both spiritual and temporal. 
The Fopc was Gregory the Ninth, the Emperor was 
Frederick the Second.* 

*The diiwniiinn and war between thc^c tw(i potentates \t 
rclutcd in sialcly diction by Dean Uilman (Hhtory ef l^tin 
Cbritluittily, tendon, tSt,p, 6 voU. Svo, book x, ch, lii, vol. jv, pp. 
Sia-jxi). The whole of ihii patsB^c, too kini; 10 quote here, 
ihnuld be Mu<lic(l. Dean flumplre reniarit that, " l>iiiile'B retro- 



Canto TVI. RmJiugs on the Purgatorio. 31 

In tvl pacsc ch' Adicct Po rit;« 115 

Prima chc Fcdcrico averse briga: 
Or pod tiicunmentc in<ii paHsarM 

Per <iaaliinquc Isuciassc per vcrgo^nu 

Di ragionar cm buoni, o d' appretura. 120 

In thai land which the Adi^e and the Po water, 
valour and courtesy wetc wont to he found, before 
that Frederick had his contlict. Nnw it can be tra- 
versed in s«urity by any one. who from sense of 
shame, trouU) abstain from speaking with good men 
or (even) approaching ihent. 

Meaning, that whoever would feel ashamed, because 
himself had, to converse with j>(»od and courteous folk, 
can safely go through Lombaidy from end to end, for 
BOW he will not find any good men left there. Henve- 
nuto ixIalCH several anecdotes illusi rating Marco's pun- 
t;cnt and ready wit, and says that, having applied to 
the people of Lombardy a general role of unworthi- 
iica&.he next, by way of a sop to their feelings, maketi 
ft special exception : for he observes that in these two 
provinces there do still sur\'ivc thrte worthy men, who 
retain some of the old-fashioned virtue and courtesy. 

ifect of the historr of the previous ccnttiry ik an indoctim), proving 
In position. LoinbAidy, Komacna, and the Marta Trc\iciana, 
dncnbed after Dante's manner (/'arj;. xiv. m; Snf. xvjii. 611, by 
llieir rivets hart, in the Kood oM days at the emperifn. from 
BwbartMMi onwarc!&, prciientcd brif^lil cxampla of a chivalrous 
fift. All had been ruined by the long onllicl of Prdcrivik II with 
H«Wirili» III, (ffc^ory IX, and Innnecni iV, and in that long 
caaAin, each nartv. Ibc Popes pre-rmmrntly, had usurped an 
Mtbonty whien belonged to the other." At the present time 
*» hw mtn of virtue .ind lec pec lability arc Icfi there, that a 
aidicd man. blashinK tut bin "wn K^'i'ti ""'' wishinj; lo avoid 
■By CC1- uiun with virtuout persons, could pana thraugb 

Ihi mh. . iiry Mithiiul fear of encountering one. 


Heading on the Purgatorto. Canto xvi. 

ncn v' in* tic vccchi ancora, in cui rampoKn* 
L' tinlica «U la nuova, « par lor txrdo 
Che Dlo a iTiiglior viia li ripogna 1 1 

Corrado dn Pola/zo.t c il buon Uherardo,^ 
E Guitlo da CHtitcl,{| chc inc' ai noma 
Prancescain«nte il scmptice Lombarda 


•w" in: See Nannuccl (^Anatisi Critiai. p. 444): •' Eno, «, 
enito. Dalle tcr/e sinRoUri niiscendi) cun In ^iunta di un A'o le 
lcr*c pliirali, come abuiamo notalo a irai/, n. J7. cosl dalla tena 
singolnrc i »i ha *ccnr»do la rc^ola la tcrza pturalc entt, e per 
iscorcio en." Compare Lapo Gianni (in Nannucti'ti UanintU ilMi 
Lftltraium dtlla Lingua llaiutim, vol. i, p. 250); — 
*' R vederai. maraviglia sovrana, 
Com' en formate angcliche beHeaw." 
And Par. xv, 76.78 :— 

" Pcrocchi il Sol, che v' allumii ed arse 
Col caldo c con U luce, in si iguali, 
Che tutte HimiKlianze eona itcarDe." 
Nannucci adds: ** Eno t dunquc voce ori^nale e rt^olarc, c non 
UMiia per In rimn. come nuppon^ono gl' inicrpreli delle vecchie 
cane Quindi si fcce anno, ccmc diano, ttannn, fanmo, tuttme, da 
datw, sfano, funo, vtmo, etc." My old friend ^iannuccl always 
fiercely opposed the idea, which lie treated with the greatest 
contempt. Itiat Dante could positibly require to alter a word for 
the tuUe of ihynie. 

t<i aiinliof Vila li rifKitiiM : " »<:ilicct> vitie futunc, iiuaoi dicat : 
mors vidctur cis tardx. tit loquitur hvperbolicc. Vcl die. ^uod 
optunl rcponi [1.^. to be called away] ad meliorom viiam, ideat 
virtu »«io [cm, quam xit vitn mndcrnorum.'' (Benvenuto.) 

^CerreJ'< Jii Paltisio : Benvenuto relate* : " Corrado da Palazjto 
wa» a noble of the State of Brc»cia, of whose biavcry [ have 
heard, that vrhen he once bore the atandard of his country in 
battle, thnijch hm hiiniK had been cut off, he bu}u:ed the ttandard 
with his stumpti until he died." He was Captain of the people al 
Florence in 1*75. The Eni;!isli icnder will remember Widdrington 
in (he Ballad of Chcv>- Cliacc. 

'^GbtTarJo. of llic noble house of Camino, was a soldier and 
lord of Trevito, a principality always held by bin family. He 
WBB hind, humane, couiteouti, liberal, and a fneod of good men, 
and Kumumcd the gopj. 

||C«n((> rf« CaiUlh was of the family of the Robert! of 
Reggio, of which there were three branthe*. namely, the Hoberli 
di Tripolt. the Koberti di Furno, and the Robcrti da CaslcUo. He 
Hounihcd nl t^esKin in the time of Dante, when that State warn in 
great pruspcriiy, and whb governed liberally. He was a prudent 

Canto :(vi. Readings on (he Purgat^mo. 


There Arc indeed three old men itjll IcA, in whom 
the inttque age acenis to reprove the new. and to 
them it appeuis late ere God put them hack to the 
better life: Corrado da Palazxo, and the good Ghe- 
iwdo, and Guido da Castclto, who is better named 
aAcc the French fashion, the honest Lombard. 

At thiE point Marco, in concludini; his long speech, 
teaches I>antc what answer lie ought to make in the 
future to any one who should question him on this 
^at matter. 

Di** oggimai che la Chiesa di Roma, 
Per confondcrc in sC dac rcggimcnti. 
Cade ncl Ungo, c (^ brutui e U toma."— 

Say ihou From this day forward that the Church of 
Rome, from confounding: in itself two governments, 
falU intu the mire, and befouls both itself and its 

Dante, tt must be positively asserted, wun a perfectly 
faithful and dcvotnl »)n of the Church of Rome. 


' I. beloved and hnnourcd, and wSic tn counnei. fits 
rcat. and D&filc hicntbclf experienced it. having 
Ti rc'.^:''!'^ hi> houve with mui;h honouf. Aa to hit t>cin)( 
tailed VH^/tii Utif^rJo, urnnc pcrhans hiive tried lo cxpUin Ilial, 
oe account ol hii, uteai courtuv, hit. (jtne exteitded lu Fnince, and 
(>c «a> called Ihe simple Lombard. " Bui lhat.'~sayH Benvcnutt*. 
"im abMtid, tot ynu muit Icoow that the Trench call all Italiam 
Lwabard*, ant) hold them to be unctunmonly sharp ; and thcrc- 
bn Uarni Miyn well ihul, in the Prench mode ol apcaliiiig, he 
Id profieily be called mereir a Lombard" Compare Purg. vil, 
"il re dclU lempltcc vita.' 
*/><'. Scarliiifini paraphraien thix: '' Do thou then conclude 
Ihu the Chuicli of Rome, by confounding in itself the two powers, 
Icnpotal and spiritual. cBstt into the mire and pollutes, both itself 
mA its chatge. oamelv, tMth forms of govtmmenl." Compare 
I'b^. likf. ii. 4,' II. a9-3s: "Ante omnii ergo dicimuH, 
emaaedebcrc (natcriiR po4idu« propriis humerii exciperc 
re (•Vtc hurncroTvm nimin K*svat«m vimilcm m tittnum 
(JOfttarc nciesK sit. Hoc est quod msKi'f' no»tcr Horatius 
(nacip)!, cam in principio faetic^ ' Sumitc matcriani,' ctu dictl." 
U. C 



Resdiugs o» the Purgatorio. Canto xvt. 

Let it be remembered that he never sought to sub- 
stitute any other religion in her place, and would have 
placed in Hell, among the Heretics in the fiery tombs 
of the city of Dis, any one who should have attempted 
to do so, but he was an uncompromising foe to her 
temporal power, which excited the ambition of the 
clerical hierarchy ; and of her worldly possessions, 
which, by stimulatinK the cupidity of the priesthood, 
destroyed their purity of mind, and unfitted them for 
their sacred office. 

He goes on to confirm Marco's words by the authority 
of Holy Scripture: but he has noticed with some 
curiosity, titat while Marco has given to Conrad and 
Quido their family names, he has, in the case of 
Gherardo. only spoken of him by his Christian name. 
He asks who he is. 

— "O Marco mio" — diss' io, — "bene argomenti ; 130 

Ed or diKcmo pcrcht ds retag^o • 
Li Rgli di L«vl Turono nenti i 
Ma qual Qhcrardo 6 quel che (u per saggio 
Di' ch' i ritnaso delU K^ntc spcntA, 
In rimprovcrio del secol iclvAJuio ? "— 135 

"O my Marco," said I, " thou reHHoneiit well; and 
now I perceive why the sons of Levi were debaned 
from inheritinf;: but what Gherardo is it who thou 
saycst has rcmaiDcd an cnsamplc of an extinct gene- 
ration, as a reproof to this sava(;e ast ? " 

* At rttaggio, or, dal rtlaggio ; sec Nunibtrt iviii, 10, and JmSim 
xtii, 14. Dante can now comprehend, on account of the evil 
aming from churchmen beinK invested with temporal power, why 
God had forbidden the Levilci to have an inheritance like 1h« 
other iriben, and left them to depend for all except their dwelling* 
on the lithcH and offerings of the people. The Chrialian pricM- 
hood nuEht to have followed their acampEc. See Purg. lix, 11 j; 
JUm. iii, 10. 

Caato XVI. Readings on (he Purgaiorio. 35 

Marco answers Dante's question, but Bcnvenuto owns 
that he feels a doubt as to Marco's meaning;, when he 
declares that he does not know Ghcrardo by any other 
vamame, for the family name of the Da Camino was 
famous, not only in I^mbardy but lhrou};h»ut al) 
Italy. And especially was Marco intimate with the 
family and the former head of it, Riccardo. father of 
Gherardo.* Bcnvenuio thinks that this apparent want 
of knowledge was feigned for a double reason : — 
{i) that he (Dante) might mention Gherardo's extreme 
^oodnevi, for he understood that Ghcrardo ought to 
be more celebrated for his goodness than from the 
distictctton of the noble family of Da Camino; and 
(a) that he might have an opportunity of ccnsiirin;:! the 
iiieinor>- of Gherardo's daughter Gaja. who was un- 
fortunately but too well known as mtUier vere gaia et 
cHKd; W Tan-isina Ma amorosa ; and as though Marco 
maid say : " Neither do his noble blood, or his private 
vinues. render him so celebrated as does the unfortunate 
notoriety of his daughter." 

* Bcnvvnulo relate* how Mftrco on one occavion, having been 

Ubm prJHoncr, and an irnmcnBc ransom dcmandKl (ur hiit 

Uhmtion, Bent a mevMingcr to Kicciinlo da Oiminn, Lord of 

TiTVMO, beeping Mm not to let him die in prison. Rkcardo, 

fediac ml piiy tnt the atrail* in which Kis friend fatind himself, 

wf9(t At ancK to levcral f;rc<(t princes in L.omb«rdy, aI whose 

erart* Mnrco had been a ficqucnt and welcome kucbi, in order 

tfcii ibey might confer with him as lo ihc best means of cfTcciin? 

W Bbrration. Marca was very indignant on hearing this, and 

(CM 08 anDthtr mcnitcDiitt lo inform Rtccarilo da Camino thai he 

waM rather die in captivity than become a slave so often, and lo 

W annv people (Mrvm lot tl taulonim). Kiccnrdo, struck with 

iftamr, and cnrunc hi* own meanness, a( once, b) him^cU, paid 

lif rsn«n«n in full, and «! Marco al liberty. Marco tould hitrdly, 

•■-.tTtfeirc. have spoken literally when he said : " Per nltto 

■r9tanr.n<nc io nol conoKO." He tnust have said it in a Aguialivc 


C 2 


Readings on tJte Puri^atorio. Canto xvi. 

ivi. H 

Finally, Marco, having bid the Poets God-3peed, 
points out to them the pure light into which they arc 
about to pans, whereas he himself must still remain in 
the black. Hmokc. 

^"O luo parlar m' inganna o e' mi Icnta," — 

Riepnsc a me;— "chf, parlmirtomi Tosco, 
Paretic del buon Gherardo nullft tcnta. 

I*cr allro »oprannomc io nol cnnoNco, 

S* 10 nol (o^liessi da sun figlU Caia. 14a 

Din aia con voi, ctii piCi non vcgno vosco. 

Vedi I* atbir • chc per lo fummo rata, + 

Giik bianchcKKiarc, c itic convtcn partirmi, 
[L' Angcio i ivi), prima c(i' iogU appaia." — 

Cositomi), c \tiii non voile udirmi. 145^ 

"Either thy words deceive me," he answered me, 
" or they arc meant lo prove mc {tx. to sec if 1 know 
more »bout him), for, addressing me (as thou doist) 
in TuKc^n, it would seem us though thou hikKl no 
knowledge of the gooti Gherardo. I know him bjr 
nn other name added, unless I were to take it from 
his diiufihtcr Gaia. May God be with you, for I bear 
you company no farther. Behold the efTuleence that 

* r nibir: Scartaficini aplly points out that wc arc not to iranA- 
latc thi», ■« so many have done, the whileninnof the dawrn, or the 
Sun's rays penetratins through the smolte. It is the radiance of 
the Anjccl of Peace who is near at hand, and hii «hiniii|c brifhi- 
nesa it seen through the darkness, not so the raya of the Sun. 
The words L' Aagclo i ivi arc the explanation of the cau^c 
Dante describes the more excessive brilliancy of thia radiance, 
when, in the next Canto, the Poett approach the Angel. See 
P»rg. xvii, 4^, 45 :— 

"uo luinc il voho mi pcrcatae, 
MBKgiorc a>MU ehe quel en' i in nostr' nso." 
f rdM for raggia : Compare P,ir. iv, 55-37 :— 
*• T«i crcdi chc a mc liio pco*.icr mci 

Da unci ch' i pritno, cuai coint raia 
Dall un> se u conosce, il cinque c il ici." 
AniPar.xxix, 136: — 

" La prima luce chc tutia U r«i«." 

Canto XVI. Readings oh lite Purgatorh. 37 

nuliates ihrotigh Ihe smoVe is already whitening, and 
I must RcedN Awny — the Angel is there — before I t>c 
ucn by him." So he tucneil hack, and would not 
hear me more. 

Uarco has tu turn back into the smoke before the ap- 
pearance of the Angel. He can only present himself 
before bira when his penance shall have been com- 
pleled Compare this dcpanurc of Marco from ihc 
I'oeis in this pasisage with that of Hrunetto Latini 



Readings on the Purgatorio. Canto Kvil. 



In the last Canto Dante defined the purgation of Anger 
in general. He now speaks of the remedial measures 
for curbing tierce anger, and trcat^i of Acadia^ a word 
{or which there is no ^qo<\ modem English equivalent. 
Perhaps "spirilual sloth " best expresses its meaning, 
but as we have the authority of Chaucer for "Accidie," 
wc can use that word. 

Bcnvcnuto divides the Canto into three parts. 

In Ihe First Divtiion. from ver. i to ver. 39. Dante 
pointK out what is the best curb to Anger. 

In the Stcond Division, from ver. 40 lo ver, 75, he re- 
lates how the Angel of Peace purified him from the sin 
o{ Anger, and showed him the way up to the Fourth 
Cornice, in which Accidie is chastened. 

/ti liif Third Oiviiioti. from ver. 76 to ver. ijg. before 
iipcaktng of Accidif, Dante proceeds, with consummate 
ftkill, to enquire into the source and origin of it, and of 
the other capital sins. 

Division I. — Before teaching how to put checks upon 
Anger, Dante relates that, when he wuft issuing frnm 


Canto SVil. ReaMngs oh ttu Purgatorio. 


the Etmoky cloud which enveloped the Angry, the setting 
San appeared He seems lo say: "Shall I tell you, 
in language that you can understand, how I issued from 
that pitchy smoke, and came forth into the luminous 
air? Imagine, at some time or other, when crossing 
the Alps or Apennines, a cloud has covered you, so that 
you could sec nothing, and then, after a while, as the 
cloud gets rarified by the Sun, you begin to recover 
the sight of things around, but only in the feeble and 
imperfect way that a mole is supposed to do." 

" It is well here to remember," says Benvenulo, 
"that although there are divers Alps in different parts 
of the world, yet our Poet is probably speaking of the 
Apenninc Alps, and of that part of them which lies be- 
tween Bologna and Florence, where he had met with 
such an experience as he describes." Denvcnuto adds 
that he himself remembered this passage, when a cloud 
eii\'etoped him in the same way on the Apennines. 

RicoTxIiii, Icttor, sc mat nell' mlpc * 

Ti colte nebtMa,t per la qual vcdcsu 

*miU mtp*: The Vcc. dtlta Cntsca, on the word d^, says: 
"UonUfC'u ahissimM; pfopnamenle quelU che fascia I' Italia da 
Tiwc)oni>n> (to the North]": and ^ 3, " auaUivoglm monlagna 
l^uciattDcnte." It must be mncml>cicd lna.t atft here in in tlic 
aaKalar- Landino apcc>fkii)t)' reminds ua that nwiJ* aifit docs not 
tmmfritr mean "on the Alps": " Alpi propriamenic sono i 
Bonti chc divtdono ilnlia dc la francia. Ma da questi tutti ffli 
*ki wtonti in lingua to»c«na (mu nun in Utino) ^no dctti alpi." 

^Tit»tuvil»M : Compare H(Hi>er(i'(idi/,iii, 10-15, L^rd Derby's 
Uiulalio4i) : — 

** \-i when the south wind o'er the mountain top* 
Spirndi a thick vol of mint, the shqiherd's banc. 
And friendly to the nightly thief alone. 
That a iiti>nc'i ihcow ihcninKe of vision bounda: 
So roue the dusl-clouil, at in iwnicd rank* 
Will) rkptd ktep ihey ir.ov'd across the plain." 


Readings oh the Purgalario. Canto xvii. 

Nan altrimcnti chc pcrpcllc talpc;* 
Come, quanilo i vapori umidi e iipc«i 

A dirikdHrt cominciiinsii. In apcn 

Del tiol debiletDcnle cntn per eiitii ; 
E Ar La XXM imagine kesicra ; 

In i;iuKnere u vcder com' io rimdi 

Ln hfllc in priBi chc gi& ncl corcarc era. 
Si,§ piirc);giaiido i mici co' piu!ti Eidi 

Del miii Macatro, utttii fuur di tal nubc 

At nL::(^, murti ^Ih ncj baftai tidi. 

Rccitil to mind, Reader, jf ever on some lofty moun* 
tain a mist has overtaken thcc, throuKh which thou 
couldKt not see otherwise than docs the mole through 


• lalft : Bcnvcnuto requests hist readcra to " Take no(« that the 
innic Appearing to sec is shown in two ways, First, bccau&cit has 
oyes, ard Nature cTtalc» nothinu in vain; anA immdly. becauKe 
we know that the mule diet> &* uion as it bvhi>ld« the light ; so it 
is made to sec feebly, because a bcncScenI and forvseeing Nalurc 
has given it this [iictnbianc over its eyes, that they may not be in- 
jured, xccinjc that it livcx entirely undcrKnnind." And he adds that 
the angry man in the heat of passinn is very liken mole. It ia 
snmcwhsi remarkable that, in the IlnJianlBngiiH);c,lh«re it no well* 
Tcco;;ni>>ed tvotd signifying a rnt, as ditlingiiiihcd from a tnouite. 
The more uaual way is to »ay icniv (or muusc, and fo^it for rat. 
but as a mailer of (act both woids. a?; well an the old Italian rAlto, 
all mean mfluKe, Ai Florence, tvhcrc moles arc not so often seen, 
it is the popular practice to speak nt rntu » lalfii. There was 
once an umusin^; dispute on this subject between tny lito fiicnd*, 
the late Sir James LaVAita and Count Vgo liaUani. They agreed 
In refer it to the porter at the entrance to the Aitcidimia delta 
Oiiif.i. and asked him what were ihoBc animali^ that ran about in 
the cellars, j>uitic<.i1ari/iiig the si/c ol un ordinary lat. " Ma Lor 
Signori intcndnno lalpi," was the aniwei. 

titiiraJiir; This verb in the neuter signification, according to the 
I'ur. dtlla Cruiot, has the force of Jiveair mtta, m i^ct thinner. 
Comp«rc Purg. i. 131-123 =— 
"Quando noi fumtno di>vc la rti£iadu 
Ptigna col sole, c per CMicrc in parte 

Uo\-e advrezxa, pogu »i dirada " ; etc. 

I bgeUra : prompt, easy : " La lua imagina^ionc aiutata da 
queata aimiliiudine sardi pronta a comprendere." (Venturi.) 

^ 67 in this sentence means : " In this manner, ut. in this faint, 
declining sun- light.** 

Canto xvir. Headings on tlu PHr^aiorio, 41 

the membrane (ofits eye) ; how when the humid and 
condensed vapoarn begin (o dissipate themiiclvfa. the 
oth of the sun feebly penetrates through them; and 
(then) thy imugi nation will be prompt in coming to 
perceive how I at first itaw the Sun ajfain, which was 
at the point of setting. Thus, measuring my steps by 
the trusty ones ofiny Master, 1 cume foith out of that 
cloud into the (faint) sunbeams, which on the tower 
slopes had already expired. 

Dr Moore {Timt References, p. (ooj puts the picture very 
cicaiiy before us : " As ihcy arc leaving the Third 
Coraux, the Sun is on the point of setting, and in the 
lower vaiteys his light had already departed. As they 
ascend to the I'ourth Cornice, where AtciJia. or Sloth, is 
poniihed. Iwili^ht has come on, the last light in the sky 
ia rapidly fading, and the stars arc beginning to appear 
hen and there. It was the sunset of Uaster Monday. 
about 6.^ p.m." 

When Dante apeaks of Vii^il's steps being trusty, wc 
most remember that he was walking with his hand 
reslittg upon his Master's Rhoulder (Su xvi, 9). 

In the ncxi mx lines Dante, having himselfa powerful 
ItAcy. invokes (he imaginative powcirs. asking them 
whence comes their motive force. 

O ImmaKinatlva," chc »• rube t 

-'.' i.r. tbc imaginativepowcrof [anlSAy. Comniirc 
L. It iM. i^'unm. fhnH. part i, qu. luviti, art. 4I. "Ad 

hajwr . TrmiTum rclcntii)nt:mauic<iivtervatiunemordinatiir 

f^mtsm, 'iMr i>ajgmatu- i|uic idcin kuiii ; mt cnim phantaun. »ivc 
^iai|in*lia ■)«'"■ ihiHuunu i^uiiUm (nTniiiium per scitnum 
«iciTwr>ini- And af;ain' purs i,qu. 6^, " PrtKul dubio 
■porict ... in Yi imaciniiiva poncrc non Aolum potcniiam 
pH^rain, ■'■■' -•••" ictivam.*' 

f cte ■( rb ettula relatci ihc following anecdote which 

■«y aU''< ^' ' ... ilnciaccin's Vittt Ji linntt : " It happened once 

to Brat in ()i« tity Ot iiiena that be wa> ihawn s twok of 

fftu t^, - :i. and wtudi he bad never wen befaic, and a* he 



Reading on tfu Purgalorio. Canto xvil. 

Tdl volta *i cli fuor, ch' uom non ■' Kccorge, 
Perchi d" inlorno nunnin mille lube, 
Clii move ic, BC it senso ron ti porgc ? 
Movxti Ititni;, ch« nel ciel s' informx 
Per ai, o per voter che gii lo acorijc.* 

O Imsgination, thou that dost at times abstract usout* 
side ourselves so (completely), that n man perceives it 
not, even though a thousund trumpets are braying 
around him, who i& it that i»oveei thee, if the senses 
dIrcc not before thee (an object of contemplation) ? 
[Dante then answers his own question.] The li«ht 
(of the intellect) which is formed in heaven, sets thee 
in motion, either spontaneously, or by the will {of 
God) which guides it downward. 


could not get any better opportunity of seeinK it. he leant hi* breast 
ttKninsI an apotneeary'ii counter and read Ihe whole book through 
wilh such aIlcntion(steadfastly keeping his eyes filed upon it from 
the sixth hour until vexper lime), Ihxt he wan nut nwarc of any- 
thing passing around him, although a bridal procession wa« pasisine 
tlose fey. witfv shouts, songs and music. And when people asked 
him haw he could rnansgc to go on reading without noticinK xo 
di.HliiiKuishcd a (cstival, with its acrccabic sii;ht u(su many of the 
ladies of Siena, and the beautiful mutic of so ni;inv instruments, 
he an*wer«dthat he had not perceived that anything watgoin^ on; 
■nd after th»t people hud marvelled greatly at that, they were 
struck with a bicond wonder even greatct, when they remembered 
that Dante was an cspccia) admirer of love sonnets, such as trete 
being suni; clou to him." 

* uorgi : The primary' nieanincofUM;^' i\'<ic, dtlla Crtitrd) is 
'"Vederc. Dincernerc." But under § i, wc find : " Storgert, per 
Onidarf, kteitrart it mmanmo, Par ia teorUt." Compare Inf. viii, 

■ "tu cjai nmarrai 
Che gli hai scoria hi buia contrada." 
And Ptre- lai, w, ii: — 

" Sc voi Mc(e ombre che Dio su non degni, 
Chi v' ha per la sua scala lantn scone." 
And Petrarch. Part ii, Son. xlviii :— 

** Cos! su.t vita subito trascorse 
Quella ehc gib eo' bcgli occhi mi tKhnc, 
Ed or convicn the col pcniner la tcgua." 
And Pari ii. Cunjunr viii, st. lo:— 

'* ScorKiini al inigtior Guado: 
E ptendi in grado i cangiati dcsirL" 

Canio xviL Readings on the Purgaton'o. 


Or. according to Benvenuto : " By the Divine will, which 
transmits the light itself to man without the intermedia- 
tion of the heavens ; as though he would say : Such 
powers of imBgination are set in motion by light from 
heaven formed spontaneously or transmitted from Ood." 
Dante now demonstrates by three examples, how, in 
a kind of mystic imagination, he fancied he saw three 
effects of anger, one bad, another worse, and the third 
wont of alL 

Deir «npic»a * di let, chc niul6 forma 

NcU* uccci cbe a caaUr pi& si dilccia, ao 

Neir imagine tnia apparvc I' orma : f 
B i)ui fu la mia tn«ntc ti natrclU I 

Dvniro da si, the ili fuor aon v«nia 
Cosa chc fosse aUor da tej recctla. 

Of the cruelty of her (Philomela), who changed her 
Form into (that of) the bird that most delight* in 
Hinging (the nightingale), there appeared the outline 
in my imagirtatioo. And hereupon was my mind so 
shut up within itself, that whatever thing was received 
try it, did not come from without. 

*M«Mma .* SeartazrininysfM^i»i,t mean* cruelty, and quotes 
tkf (otloiriog monls Itctid Jacopo delta Laiia: "Bmpiejza k una 
■fccic pcitifcru d' iracondia." He adds Ihnl it ii alt lh« worse 
when perpetrated of malice aforEthouRht. Compare Siff. x, Si-H^, 
•Iktc F*n'i*ta deK'i Ul>erti a»ks Dante why the Florcrtines 
pffwcutc ht» family with *och persJBtcrtt malice, in which pauage 
imfic IB lucd in the lenic at " cruel." 

*• Dimmi pcrclij quel popolo i (.1 cmpio 
Incnntro a' mtci in ciaitcunii naa Ickrc." 

ttgnmj- i^'ifitM imagine orma dtW ff>itxia ili Filfimtla 

!FlHiCB' nella (antatin invece di dire /' u'ma di VilomtU 

hoBii. <- tiilta ptKiica, c ci fa iniaginarr I' imagine 

* iMfltc <^ ' < 'iTo^nc) in atto tale, Che I' cmpieta al 

SWMCa ncl> iDn^mia." (Giobcfti.) 

; miaU a wi%tmu . Compare i'ur^. ili, \3, i j:— 

" La mcnle mia. chc prima er« ritlretta, 
Lo inlcnto rallan;6." 

Commentators liave differed considerably as to which 
of the two sisters, after the cruel vengeance of one or 
the other of them upon Tcrcus, is here meant ; Frocnc, 
whom Jupiter changed into a swallow, or Philomcl4, 
who became a nii^htingale. 

Dante now turns his thoughts to a second inslan 
of Anger that is worse than that just alluded to; b 
cause it is one which shows how there arc limes when 
a man can be so inflamed with anf^er, on account of a 
slight injury done him by one, that he will set his mind 
to work the destruction of a large numbei' of innocent 
per&ons. { 

Haman, because Mordecai omitted to do homage to 
him^ compassed the death u( the whole of the Jews that 
were In Persia. 


Poi piovvc * dcnUo all' aha fsnlnsia f 
Un crocifiESoJ dUpctiOKOC licro 
Mclla sua vista, c cotal *\ moria. 

Intomo ad csrd era it grandc Asaucro, 

E>tcr Mua apoM c ii giusio Murdochcfl^ 
Che fu al dire cd al Tar cosl intero-S 



*piovt»: A» rain dcscendB from heaven, so did these vtatoos 
coflie dawn from on hijth, and enter inia Dante'i conceptions. 
Piowrt is frcqucntlv u«?d by I>anle in tht ftcnM at 8on)cthing 
earning ilown from ficavcn, whether some jtltribute of God, or. *> 
in Inf. viti, K3, the rebellious Angcln, turned iritn Pcmons, after 
having been expelled from Heaven. 

t alia /iinlaiM : Compare Pur. xxxiii, 143: — 
''Air sllu fantasia qui riianc6 pocsa. " 
ScarlBMini ob»crN-es that Dante calU hti phanlniiy eleVAt«d, 
iKcaufc it was detached ffoni the Mntics. and Irom ovcrythini; 
CAflhly, and vutrcd up to Heaven. 

]ti-«(;)U4i: According to the English version Haman wa» 
hanjtcd : the Vwlg^itt has: iiii^ntut ... in fiatiiruUi. It is pto- 
bablc that he wnt empaled. 

^ilginsli^ Miirdo(h«', Cnt /» . , , coti inttn: Notwithstanding 
Uatiic'» pancejrie ol Motdccai, 1 prefer Dishap Wordswonh'a 


Canlti xviu Reading m the Pur^atorw, 45 

Then there descended into my derated phaatasy one 
crucified (Haman), contemptuous and haughty in his 
look, and with that demeanour (cotai) was he dying. 
AfDoad hitn wcie the great Ahasuerus, Bsihcr his 
eaaKMl, and the righteouB Mordecai, who was of such 
inte^ty both in word and deed. 

We now come to the third example, that of a self- 
dcstroycr from Wrath. Uenvcnuto considers this is an 
example of a sin of the «-orst kind. The story is 
that of Amila, wife of King Latinus; she hanged her- 
self in aogcr and despair because she thought Turnus 
had been slain, to whom her daughter Lavinia was 

P. come quests imagine rompco 

Si per »i sicua, a guiia d' una bulla * 
Cut fnanca I' auiua K>ttp qoal si (co ; 

Stir«c in niia viuonc una fanciulla,^ 

PiaiiAendo fottc. e diccva: — "O regina, 55 

PtTchc per ira hai votuto csscr nulla ? 

Anciiu t' hdi per non pcrdcr Lttvina; 

Ur m' hai pcrduta : to sun cssa chc lutto, 
Madrc, alia tu* pria ch' all' alliui niina." — 

Aod *J> Ibia imaifc broke up of itself, after the mitnncr 
of a bubble, when the w»tei under which it was 

' (Hofy BibU: by Wordawonh, 1S73), which b that ifaete u 
i«cte pctaon in the book of Enther of any vco' tofty elevated 
r, ar of a devout mind. The Bi^iop »)-s that ihc Itoolc 
b( £adicf mmt be reail in conncflion wrth thotc nf Eira and 
!t«feranah. The dnout Jews hid >ll departed to undergo 
pnvatiofM •f>d pcr>ec\itionB wbile rebuilding Jerusalem. Those 
■te itMctll tlicti own ca»c and comfort aiaycd in Pcrun. and 
UMBC ibcw wtie Mordecai and KMlicr. 
*Mla : for httta. Compare Shaketpeare. Mathak, act I, »ttne 

■*Tbe eanh halh bnbbtc^ as the «ntcr baa, 
And theoc arc of them." 
-.1.- The death of Queen Amula in related in Vtrtpr* 
X -.. 595-607, but ap>ce torbido my quutme 11 in full. 

46 Readings on ike Purgatorio. Canto xvil. 

formed fails it; there uprose in my vision a young 
maiden weeping bitterly, and saying: "' O Queen, 
why thfouch wiuth hast thou chosen to be naught? 
Thou hast slain thyself so as not to lose (me) Lnvinia : 
now ihou haat lost me. I am the one, Mother, that 
mourns thy destruction, before that of another." 

By altrui, Lavlnia means Turaus, who had not yet been 
slain by .'Eneas, as Amata thought was the case. It 
was nol until after Amala's death that .^neas stew 

Benvenuto aays Virgil adapted this story from on« 
in Homer's Odyssey, where Anticica appears to her 
son Ulysses in Hades, and Idls him that she had hting 
herself, thinking that she had lost him. In his Epistle 
to the Emperor Henry- VIl, Dante refers to this 
episode as a \\'aming against yielding to selfish pas- 
sions, instead of accepting apparent evil for the sake of 
a greater good. 

£>iVisio» II. — Dante now describes the appearance 
of an Angel, whom we shall find to be the Angel of 

* Scitrlaz^mi points out that, after having hcheld three viBJons 
of Bvrcct Kctitlcncsa (Purg. xv, Syi >4)> l^antc Men by vay nt con- 
trast as muny vJBtonx of ilirc wrath, Pete/ (/ SttU Ctrtlit. p. 164) 
hKN the fnltowiD);: " Filnmeta uccide: Amano ^ uccino: Amata 
■i uccide. Filomcla uccide per Kuntarc nc' >uoi pcn»ien la 
dolCKZu tlcUa vendetta, c pcrdc la facolll de* pensteri, la 
ragionc 1 Amann, vfilcndnpcrdere altmi, pcrdc si stcsao; Amata 
si uccide per non pcrder t^vinin. c la pcrde per sempre: sfarzi 
temprc infelici dell' ira. Di Ftlomela fan vendetta i Ccleslj : 
di Amano farv vendetta gli iii>mini: di Amata fa vendetta ella 
Mesaa: lie vendrttc clie soventc »' uniicoTio insiemc. Co«l il 
voJto di due regie iJcinnc orribtlmentc dall' ira irj^farinato. mcttc 
inorrcirc al lenio gentile una passtonechccancclia dalle Kvmbianie 
umane <>£»> traccia di bellezxa ; c 1' ira di an reeto minintm chc 
cade nei lacci leHi ad altrut, ira politica e reli|;iris* imicme. 
ammonttcc lutti cnloro chc dclla patria c dclla rcligionc Tanno 
instiumcnto d' ire c vcndctic supcrbc." 

Canlo XVII. Readings on the Purgalcno. 47 

Peace, who puriSes him from Ihe sin of Anger, and 
directs him to the stairway leading up to the next 

Before proceeding to speak of other matters, Dante 
relate* how he was suddenly roused from his ecstatic 
trance, and he compares his own case to that of a 
mao fast asleep in his room, on whose face the full 
nys of the Sun strike through the window, and cause 
hiiiD to a^raJce with a great start of fear; so now did 
the brilliancy of the Angel awake Dante from his 
-viiioa, and strike him with awe. 

Cocne ■) fr«Dge tl sonno, ove di butto* 40 

Nnorft lace pcrcolc il rt>o chiuso, 
Cbe fr»t1o <uixjra pii* chc tnnla lutlo ; f 

ToBto eh" UB fume il volio mi pefc04s«,t 

UacKiarc anai the quel ch' i ia noatr' uso. 45 

*di hmlta : Cont^IV Inf. xxiv, 104, 105 : — 

" U« potver fti raccolsc per tt stcaa, 
£ in quel nicdmno rilornA di bulio." 
*g<limtfrUektmaieiluttj>: On thin Lombdidi sajn: "siccoTne 
ifmrnOKf tratto fuor d* ac^ux, i;uii£H prima iji mnritc, coti per 
^dkcrrai appdlanui^n QDcllo sfor^o chr I' inlcrrcitto Honno fa 
& rimcllcm, prma chc M tutto svaniKK. " Uugioli icmurkn 
tint in P*T. txvt, 70-7S f"" cun cxlract Uie rcsjton of what is 
tmi at tbe pusage wc arc iliwusRing:— 
"B came • lume acuto li diatonna 
Per In Rpino risivo che ric^rrc 
Alio iplcndor chc va <ii f;nnna in gonnat 
B lo nxcltato ci6 chc vcdc abborrc, 
St BCtcia i la sua anbila vigilia. 
Fin chc I' cKlimaliva niA soli nrre ; " etc. 
f ahmmt! rm tbctr means the fHCuIly of judi^mcnt, 

; ■* lutmf tl w^o "It f*isi<iu, c1 »c(|. : We lejin (n^m Canto xvi, 
1*4. that ihr «'j^.Vn lisht which bla/cd into Dantc'a c>-ea wm 
fraa the r^ the AnKel- Compare Panf. vlii, ]6:— 

-))« al iroppo M confoflda.'*^ 
iad Mihoo (/■'•r. J,4/U. ui, 380) ;— 

" l>aik wiUt cMCMivc bright Ihjr ikina appear." 


Readings oh the Vurgalorto. Canto xvii. 

As sleep is bfolccn, when on a sudden a new light 
xlrikcH upon the closed cyca, and broken, Ktruggles 
ere it wholly fades aw,iy ; so did my illusion vanish 
{Jit. fall down), ho Hoon aa there smote upon my face 
a light far exceeding the one to which wc arc accus- 
tomed i,i.e. the Sun). 

The radiance of the Angel is so dazzling, that although 
Dante eagerly longs to know whose is the voice he 
hears inviting htm to approach, his mortal eye is power- 
kits before it, as on earth it would be to ga^e on the 

lo mi volgea per vedere 6v' io foise, 

Quand' una voce" dissc:— "Qui u moota;" — 
Che da ogni altro intenta mi rimoftie : 
C fecc In mta vo|i;lia t&nl" prontii 

Di riguardar chi era chc parlava, 50 

Che mai ron p»tiit, »i; non si rjtfFrantx.t 
Ma come al vA, che nowtra vista Krava, 
E per Kopccvhio sua figura vela, 
Cost la mia virtCi quivi mancava. 

" The viceu of gloiy obscured." 
And Maore in the Nationai Air beKinning, " Say, what &hall be 
our upon to-dny ? " 

"Thai, tike Itir Ixrt: which sunward Aprings, 
'Tw»n Kidrfy with 100 much liKht-" 

•nan Wit: "A Dante, che colla rapita im magi nasi one »ta 
ancor fito ne' miscrabili latti delT ira, feriscc neeli oechi una 
luce !mprovvi««; c mentre vinlu e ainarrilo vicn chicdcndo a ai 
>ic>»o dov' cgh lia, bIIu luce *' ageiun^e una voce, ehe inviian- 
dolo dolcemcntc a aalirc, gli fuga aall' anima ogni truce visionc. 
E la Iticc e la voce del)' Angelo della Pace. Luce, che con &ua 
viv*e</a puJt ben conrnndcrc e opprimerc gVi occhi di colui che 
csce appena dal fumo dell' ira ; rna che presto, con|;iunta von 
una voce chc pone sicurejiza nel profondo dell' animai, schUra 
e afforra 1' unmo ncllc paciAchc vie ore proapcfano i paaai 
de' mansucti." (Pcre», p. ifi?.) 

fClu mai nOH foi,i, u Hon li ragro^ta : Many of the old Com- 
mentators attach a deeper signification to these word^ cnpccially 
Lana who itiicrpfcla: ''That voice aoundeil to mc of irucn 
nweelncw, that tny mind will never more rest until 1 am able 
to hear it again lace to face, that ia, uhen thia ftrat life is ended." 


Canto svil. Readings on the Purgal&rio- ^^g 

I wA« tumiag round lo see where I was, when a voice 
■aid : " Here is the ascent : " and ihin withdrew me 
from every other thought, and made my will, to be- 
hold who it was that ws8 spcakictR, so e^gcr, that 
never WAuld it have ceased (longing), until it wen 
brout>ht face to bee (with the being who had spoken). 
But a* befoie the sun, which overpowers our si^^bl, 
and trota its excess (of light) conceals its form, so 
hete did my power fail me. 

The voice had caused an interruption of Dante's 
me«]it3itions on Anger, and had prepared him for further 
wonders. Just as the effulgence of the Angel sur- 
passed all lights hithcrln seen by Dante, so must the 
voice have sounded tike no mortal voice, and hence 
his desire to behold the speaker. 

At this point Virgil, seeing Dante's inability to dis- 
tinguish the shining form which has addressed him, 
eiptains the cause of the radiant vision. Virgil lum- 
self is gifted with a sif^ht more perfect and penetrating 
litaa that which Dante's human eyes can afford him. 

'— '" Quc*ti i divino *pirito, che nc ta* 55 

Via d' andaf su ne drizza scnut pre{;o,t 
& col roo lumc ■£ mcdcwno ccla. 

*atla: lot luJUt. Scartz^zini lays that in old Ilaljin writing 
tht* toriB waft used not neccinAnly for the purjiAtc of a rhyme, 
Im rm in the middle of a line, ind tlttt in proic. 

t v«£u f"gi> : Upon true Itbcralily as demon ttrated by un- 
■afced tot giftK Danicwriic« Id the Cotiriiio, i, 8, 11. iifr-iaS : " La 
tern CA«a, nella ()uale u cuA notare la pronia liberalitik, u i Jar 
am itm^mdata : percioccni il domandato i da una parte non 
nrtfi; ma mcicaUniia : perocchi qucllo riccvitorc conipera, tut- 
taclie *I datore non vends ; pcrchi dice Scrtcca {tU Beti<f. ii, 
tu. I, Nulla res cariuA coaaiat, quam qux prccibua cmia eat). 
*tac ntiUa cnna piu cara ti compera, che quella dove e' prieghi 
•a ■pcndono.' Ondc uccioechi nel dono sia prunta liberalitjt, e 
tke cna fti potaa in c&»o notare, allora *i conviene esser nctto 
^t tfjHt alt(> di mcrcalaniia i c cost conviene cMcrc lo dono non 



Readings on the PurgiUorio. Canto xvu. 

Si fa con noi. come I' uom li fa icgo ; * 

Che (]u»tc Bxpctta prego, c 1* uopo vede, 
MnliKnamcntc gik »i ini:itc al ncgo.t fio^ 

"lliiB IS a divine spirit, who unasked is directing us 
into the way to ^o up. and who conceals himtieir in 
hie own ligiit. He so deals with us, a« ii in»n docs 
for hiiiiECif ; for whoever awaits the petition, iind sees 
the need, is already setting himself evilly to deny it. 

As though Virgil would say: "Just as man stippliesl 
his own needs without anj' one else asking him. soj 
now docs the Angcl come spontaneously to us, and' 
forestalls our petitions." And in this passage Bcnvenuto 
considers that Virgil censures {ayguit) a common error 
of men. who. seeing their neighbour have ne<:d. although 
they wibh to help him, yet expect and desire to be 

Virgil tells Danlc that he ought to show his appre-a 
ciation of the Angel's courtesy by at once movinj 

Ora accorctiBmo a tantv invito it picdc : 
Pracaccism di wilir pria chc s' abbtti, 
Ch£ pm non «i poria, hc il dl nun ricdci" — 

Kow let us mnke our feet accord unto so fimciotiB an 
invitation ; let us endeavour to ascend before it gets 
dark, for a(tcr, it would not be possible, until the day 

* trjo for tivo. In all old Italian the interchange <tl g and 
U frequent, t^. : frtco (or ^ngo; hca for l<igv ; dr,uo for ilntgv ; 
fiXV i<x fico; iiguro ioTikuro; Goilanta for Coitanut; and in 
Cmv. i, S, I- U : " It Tegni di (ialienc," which Praltcelli't note 
nys ta " antics corruiion« di Tccni, da nj^vn. Arte, tttolo dalo da 
Galenu ad un suo libra dell' arte medico. The word occum 
in the ApiKryphal Ci"itone, wrongly attributed lo Danlc, bcgin- 
nint; (iwtvM lUmta, at at. 6 : — 

"Vattcnc, mia canion, ch' io tcne prego, 
Fra Ic person cbc volonticr t' intenda, 
E si t' an-csta di ragionar scga" 
tat nfge : See note above on " acn^a prcKO." 

Canio XVll. Reading oh tkt Purgaiort'o. 


Virjtil is anxious thai ihcy should reach the top before 
the darkness arrests llieir steps, so that ihey should 
not have to sleep upon the stairway, as in fact {Canto 
xxvii, 70) they have to do on the following night. 
The aaccni to the Fourth Cornice is described. 

C(Ml diuc il mio Duca, cd to con lui 

Volgcmmo i nontfi p*%u «d una scaUi; 0^ 

E Imto ch' in »l primo tcrado fui, 
Scnti'ni prcMio quasi un mover A' aim, 

B vcnlarmi ocl viso. c Axr :—" Bfiiti 

P^eifitit chc >on leaza irn mala." * — 

Tbiw apoke my Leader, and I with him (umed oar 
«ICp« towards a stairway ; and an soon as I wad on the 
fint step. I felt close by me as it were the movement 
efawitig, and n fanning c>n my face, and (I heard) 
Hud: " BUiud art the Peacfmaktrj, who arc free 
from ainful anifer." 

Benvcnato wishes os to remark that Dante has used 
the expression iVa mala intentionally, for some anger 
cm be nghteous, nnd without sin, though Cicero in 
ha Tuiculan fhsputatious, and Seneca in his book on 
Aager. have sought to demonstrate at Icn|;th, that all 
anger is unful and deleittahle. 

Dante now describes at what time of day they 
catcrnl on the stainvay, on which l>r. Moore (TiMr- 
ft^avmtei, p. loa) obscr\-cs: "As they ascend to the 
Foorth Cornice, where AuidU, or Sloth, is punished. 

Seartaj^ini contend* that all wrath )« nirt 
re ihc wrath of God, which cannot be 
.. KpoJccn of. Compare Efhn. w, aO: 
m ikH." Si. ThomtB A<iuinai (Summ. Tk/al. 
!, art. 1) quoits Itoxn St. Chrj-»<i»<om ; "Qui 
ii.k.iivK, rcua crit . qui vcru cum i:BUfti, non cril 
■i ira nun (ucrit, ncc doctrina prvftLii, nc<; juchcia 
Bcc criRiina compncuntur." And St. Thomta Aquinaa 
"Br|A mx-i nan wifipcr »t malum. " 
D 2 


Headings on the Purgatorio. Canto xvi l. 

twilight has come on. the last li^t in the sky is 
rapidly fading, and the stars are beginning (o ap- 
pear here and there," 

Gift cran lopra no\ tanto levati 70 

Gli ultimi miui*' i:hc U notlc Mguc, 
Che Ic itellc apparivan da pi& lati. 

Already were the last rays, upon which the ni.i;ht 
fnllaws. so high above us, that the stars were shining 
forth on every side (/*/. in many places), 

At this point Dante begins to feci symptoms of fatigue, 
and laments that his strength is failing. The reason 
for this sudden weakness is the approach of night, 
which, itCLui'din^ to the laws uf Fui'gutoiy. impedes 
tlieir further progress. (Purg. vii, 43-60.) 

^^ O virtii t mia, pcrchii ri ti dilc[;ue ? "— 
Fra mc siesso dicca, ehfr mi senuva 
La pons dcllc gainl>v posta in tni|;ue. 75 

"0 my dtrcnglh, why »rl thou ihus meltinfj nway ? "' 
1 kept saying within myself, for I begun to feel that 
the power of my Icf;:) had ceased for uwhile (/r(. had 
been placed in truce). 

Division III.— In this Divialon is investigated the 
origin of Spiritual Sloth (AcciJie), and also of the other 
sins chasliKed in Purgatory, nut only those that have 

*GU ultimi raggi: Tommasio quotes the following remariis 
of the ailronomer Antonelli . " ifOimi — Dcliciiliiiuma I* »fl&cr- 
vaxionc, c comprovA quanto pTofondo scfutAtore dci fvnomcni 
nalurali fosnc il nosiru Pocta. Quandci infaiti ci troviomo sopra 
ootcvoli alturc, c il sole, nccultnto il no&tro occhio nonche ai 
baui piani, indora soltknto, e lesgermenle, le pii^ debate cime 
dcllc mnntaKne, ad aria limpida cpurai cominciano a ^■cdcrsi in 
pi6 puntt del cielo le ttlcllcdi prima erandcifa, alle quail nan fa 
grave oetacolo quel candido vclo, cne dalla luce crcpuacoUre 
sficoni rimane." 

tvir/i): Tnmma«^ interpret! this " Pi'WA del ptcde, i./. wuJking 
powcrtt." Scanazfini : *' fona di muovcrsi." 

Canto Jtvii. KeadiHg^ oti th^ Purgatorio. 


been already purged in the three Brst Cornices, vix. 
Pride, Envy and Anger, but also those in the three 
remaining Cornices, vis. Avarice, Gluttony and Self- 
Indulge nee, 

Danle first describes the spot where they pa&scd the 
tuelil. It was at the summit oi the stairs, and on the 
boundary oi the Fourth Cornice. 

Bcnveauto greatly admires the comparinon Dante 
oow makes : '* As a ship is attached to the shore, 
where it can retnain for a time before it succeeds in 
getting into the port, in which it can lie in perfect 
•ecnrity, m> here, the genius of Dante, which, in the 
opening words of the Purgatorio, he haK likened to a 
bark, had fortified and fixed itself on the summit of the 
■tzirs for the night. This had already taken place in 
UoiKer spot on the previous evening,* and will happen 
again an the following evening.f until he Bnally reaches 
the presence of God. in whom, as in a tranquil harbuur, 
Us mind, after its long voyage, may repose in peace." 

Noi cnv«n) dovr piii non ulira 

L» (cala su. rd cravmnio silissi. 

rur come nave ch' alU piaggia Brriva: 
Ed to RlicM un poco ■' id udissi 

Alcana CMM ocl nuovo gitonc : t Sa 

*"'CoU,' ilkMe iiacd' 0mbn. ' n ' andcrcmo. 
Dow la cofia tmix di *^ grembo, 
R qttivi il nuovo Kiomo «itcn<l«Tcmi>.° 

t'Hrg. vii, 6;^^ 
* " E prim cbc in lutte Ir sue ^rli imrnensc 
hVn^c oni/onic (aKo i' un atpctlo, 
V, ooU< avcskc tutic Buc diHp«ii*c, 
CiMCun (ji Roi d' un gfitdo fccc Iclto ; 
Chi it natun del mortc ci allfansc 
Vti pouM di salir piii chc li dilettOL" 

Purg. Jixvii, 70-75. 

t4fcwM«iMivJ MHWfJrviw.- Wc may rrmcmbcr that Dante 
W hasrd Mn»nda immnliatcly on cntcnng each o4 Ibe two pre- 


Readings on the Purgatorio. Canto xvni 

Poi mi irobi at Macstrc mio, c dissi : 
— "Dolce mio Padre, 6i', quale oS'ensione 
Si purga qui ncl giro dove vcmu ? 
Sc i pii fti siAnno, run Mca tuo scrmonc." 

Wc were (now) where the stairway ascenclcd no further 
[i.e. at its summit), and were motionless, even as a 
thip when it reaches th* shore: and awhile I Rave 
heed if I init;ht iH-iiranylhinj; in the new circle ; then 
I turned nie to my M»Kler and said : " My beloved 
Father, tell nic what offence is purged in this Cornice 
where wc arc? Even though our feet tarry, let not thy 
speech be stayed.'' 

Dante recollects that, during their enforced delay on 
the previous night, Sordcllo had turned the time toj^ood 
account by pointing out to him the shades of the de- 
parted great in the flowery valley, and he is anxious 
now to discuss with V'ir^l Bome matter profitable for 
what lies before him. 

Bcnvenuto remarks that our poet, with jjreat art, 
proceeds tu inakt: a useful and necessary invcsti;;;atinn, 
in which he ^ives a clear diKtinctiun of the whole of 
Purgator\- through all its Cornices: just as we read, 
in /«/. xi, that he does of all the circles of Hell. 

Virgil answers him : — 

Ed cKli a mc ;— " L' amor del bene* Kcmo S5 


ceding Cornices. In the second he hoird the voice of the Angel 
crying aloud, riitsui itim kaltnt, sec Canto xiii, 15-30. In lh« 
ihiril, he hcnrd llie npirila prdyiiii; for peace and mercy I'icc Canto 
xvi, 16-18J. In ihii new Cornice Tin Koijn<l falls upon hi* cars, 
* L' amvr ttti btm, iituio Ih nw dovfr : i'.c^Ati (,Utiftttc, vn\. ii, 

f. .{ii) !tay«: "Da que»te pirulc appariscr quivi esser punita 
Accidia. . . Qui Danic monia in catlcdra, e meEle m»ntt ad 
una Iczione di ctica." St. Thomna Aquinim ^Summ. Tbn'l, pars i, 
qu, Isiii, an j) defines /tdutiA thuH: " .Atcdia vet* est qujcdam 
tnstitin qui homo rcddttur tardur* ad spiritualcs actus propter 
corporalcm laborem, qux dcmonibus iioti competit." And 
(£Miiin. th4oi. para li, ^, qu. xxav, ail. iJ.^Acedia iia doprimU 

Cftnto XVII. Readingi on the Purgatorio. 55 

Di >BO dovcr, quiritt;i si (istorx; 
Qumi tibjilte il mil cardnto rcmo;* 

And he to me: "The (mere) love of what is good, 
when lacking its proper daly (of activity in seeking 
after it) i» ntoned for in (his very spot; here is plied 
B^n the ill-belAted cur. 

We hare in the above lines Dante's definition of 

boninit, ot nihil ei agerc libcat ; uculi ca que sunt 
etiam frigida lunt. El tdeo acedia impurtat qunddnm 
I opcnddi." 

* M rA*vt U m4l larJaio rema : Hiacioli uya that Dante haa 
taken thn fiEuf^ hom th* cruel treatment that ibe unhappy 
(aUejr^lavcs dcpefiencrd in hi» time. They were chained five 
taan a»r, and ■■ercinercilcktly beaten if unable to row fast enough. 
U Ihc vc%m;I gol sunk or burnt, Ihey vftre delibi-ratcty left to 
^■-'' It- Ua^Nmo d' Azc^lio's novel, Siccold tie' Lffi, cap. 14, 
r ni of a naval action of Andrea Doria. a terrible picture 

oii •"«!»• Ccftari {lielUast, vol, ii,p. 311): "Oril I'oetavuol 

MCMUMR qvcala Icnlc^^a c nausea iiel ben opcrare, coll' im- 
■uirir.c 6c' vof^atori (rmr^rx) .- i quali «c il cottimo volf;a in M gli 
t> '.laou il vogarc c si pigliano alquanto di soata." 

.: : Sec thl« word in tUc Xew BngtiiA Dielit<iutry 

. . . mtiUd fy James A. H. hluiray. Oxford, iSEkf "Ac<iJu. 
Ohft. Focaia: arii-A, mfcyM ; ^ui-dii, ti(ty-4yt, auidye, atcydye. 
tO. Fr. mri-itt m.i-iU, O, Norm. I'r. uni-^/ir, miiiic ; ad. ined. 
L lurWM, corrapl. Of ble l^l. lutttia, a Or. lirq&in, heedleKs- 
»na, torpor :in Ci<«rn. Au. xit. 4O noun of state from a, not, 
and i^ni, care. t^Ha/iai, I care. fit. noD'CarinK state. Acedia 
fc«amc a latouiitc rcctrttatlicul word, appli<d pnmarily lo the 
veotal pnmlraliDn of [eclu»ci. induced by raslinK, ami other 
ffcywicil cjtMca : aTtCfwardi the proper term for the 4th cardinal 
tm. tirtik, •lwjf<UhrseM. (S«c Chaucer, ['itt^Ms Talf, 603). 
l-.' \i<:ing fciriijotten, ihc word wan vnriouily *ae- 

t , kour (»ec Ctiemnin quoted in Do Conge and 

fc-ajuriuri - ni.1^ . Ennui. tnitnK, d^Rnut : d' tuiJum), and 
inm at^itti to come opnn one a* an uaiifrit or a^cnt, whence 
tbt Med. 1 - -r,,pi»m. o<t.'uU,\. and O. I't. and Bng, oiti-ity 
«»Jk. i is Surman. the former farioian : the later 

ft«lj(, ■cce^'U.-s waa dH.i^i<. With tlw revloraiion of Urcek 

liiiriiiiii, the Latin became acain «<c^i>(, whence a rate ACEDV 


Readings m the Purgatorio. Canto xvil. 

Bcnvcnuto says that accidia is a defective love of 
the highest good, which wc ought to seek for ardently. 
It is thcrefotc a kind of negligence, a tepid, lukevvArm 
condition, and, as it were, a contempt for acquiring 

in 17th century-." Sloth, torpor. Atnong a number of illusti&- 
tion* given in the y«» Ung. Pict., I select two. 

" Under accidie, pci ich cleapcdc Blouhjie." 

[Ancnn Rtiale, a.d. liyy) 
"A man (hat hnth xccydye or slouthc hnth lorowe nnd angre 
the whyle that he Itnoweth that an other man doih wfcL" 
(Canton, Ordn of ChyHoln^ 81, a.d. 1484.) Chaucer thus 
dcacribes AccUu in The Peratma TaU under the head of l>t 
Actidia : "After the tin of wralh, now wol I tpcke of the 
■inne of accidie, or alouth: for cnvie blindcth the herte of a 
man, and ire troublcth a man, and accidie makcth him hcry, 
thoughtful and wrawc (iM<i'itAi. F.nvic and ire mnken bitter- 
ncsse in hertc, which biltetncsnc in mother of accidie, and 
benimeth him the lovr of alle goodnessc; than is accidie the 
aneui*h of a troubled herte. And Seiiit Auguttine sayth : It 
iH annnyc of goodncsne and annoyc of hannc. Ccrtcs this in a 
damnable »inne, for it dolh wroni; to Jmu Critt, in as moctac 
as it benimcth the service that men shuldc do to Crist with 
all diligence. He doth ail thing with annoyc, and with wrawneu, 
alakcncssc, and excuHalion, with idlcncKi. nnd unluM. For 
which the book iiayth; Accuraed be he thai doth the service of 
God negligently. Than is accidie cnemic to c%«ry cslatc of 
man. . . . Now cerics thia foul tun of accidie is eke a ful )c<et 
enemie tu the livelode of the body; for it ne hath no pur- 
venncc a^cntl temporel nccessitee ; for it forHteuthclh, rorsfog- 
gcth, and deatmielh all K^odn temporel by rccchelcsMicKsc." 
Pean Paget {/.i/i vj Diui^in*, Inlroduaory 'Esmy, pp. 31, ai) 
&a)^ of the above paaaagc; "Such aic the main pninis in 
Chaucer's wonderful ddinealion of the subtle, complex stn of 
accidie. In strength of drawing, in graip of iiurpoxc, in moral 
camcstnciis, in vivid and i)iK<|uieting penetration, it gccms to the 
prcKint writer more remarkable and suegcstivc than any other 
treatment of the subject which he hai^ found : or equalled only 
by the MKnilicance of that brief passage, where the everlaxling 
misery of thoEC who wilfully and to the end have yielded them- 
s«tvct> to thi« sin is told b^' Uanle !n the tn/rriur.'' There would 
Mcm to be a distinct difference between the penitent iwridiVfi 
in Purgatorv. whose fault is a defective love of the highest good ; 
and the Fifth Circle of Hell, who repreiBenl the sullen or (ulliy 
type c( Anger (wmfioi). 

Canto XVIL Reading on Ihe Purgatorto. 57 

tbe dcmirable amount of goodness. Thus it is that 
■ tbe man. who rowed lazily during the day-time, finds 
himself obliged to beat the water with far greater 
exertion daring the night ^snth his oar, if he would 
regain what he has lost, and get safety and speedily 
into port ; and in hke manner, the man who, in his 
iifc-lime. strove carelessly after the good, is compelled 
after death, to run diligently round this Fourth Cor- 
nice, as we iihall read in the next Canto. 

And now Virgil begins to discourse at considerable 
length on the origin and cause from which the seven 
principal sins are derived, and he says thai Love it 
the cause of all (by love must be understood our 
incltnattuns, aspirations and longings). He evidently 
means that Pride, Envy and Anger arise from tbe 
love of evil against one's neighbour; accidie, or Sloth, 
from a tardy de&ire of discerning and nequiring the 
trne good. The three remaining sins. Avarice, Glut- 
tony and Self-indulgence spring from an excessive 
twe or desire of what is not the true good. And so, 
Virgil shows that Love is the perverted origin and 
loot of all sins. 

Virgil first draws Dante's attention to these dis- 
tiactiuns, promising him thai he will derive profit to 
kiaiMlf by considering them. 

Ma prrchA pii) aprriu rnicndi antora, 
Volei U tncntc a mr, e [ircndcrai 
Alcun boon (niila di naslca dimorgi. 90 

But that thou inaycsi understand yet more clearly, 
turn ihy attention lo me. and thou bhalt gather some 
{ood ^it from our delay. 

.Aad Benvenuto points out that it was in truth very 
peu fruit, for, from the discourse of Virgil ihat fol- 


RiadtKgs on the I'urgaloria. Canto X\1I. 

lows, we can gather the whole form and condition 
{iptaiiias) of Purgatory, ajid not only is the matter 
that has already been discussed become clearly laid 
open before us, when we have taken in these three 
distinctions, but hIm) that of which we are going to 
treat as we go on. 

Virgil enters on his subject by laying down a 
general principle necessary for comprehending these 

Benvenuto says that, to understand the text belter, 
it is perhaps well to explain that there are two kinds 
of Love/ the higher and the lower. The higher, 
which can never he the cause of sin, seeks the good, 
and the divine light. But the lower, un account of 
Free Will, can be the cause of sin. As for instance, 
when one loves a thing which ought not to be loved, 
but which seems good lo oneself, such as the ruin 
of a neighbour's prosperity. Or, when one loves • 
thing worthy of being loved, but loves it inordin- 
ately. Or, when one loves a thing worthy of our 
highest love, but in a careless slothful way, as in the 
case of Accidie, which is punished in this Cornice. 

*lteo kinJt of Lvtt : Oianam (DmitU tl In Phtlotvfikit CutMiifut, 

Eip. ijo, tji) seem* to upcttk of three: " Diin« I'ordrc moral, 
n prcmicm fuits ijui »c tcncontrcnt ttont encore du nombrc 
de ceux oil I'Ainc sc montrr {lasMvc ; c'cst p<iur(]uoi on Ics 
nomine excelltMnent Paasions. U urnit loni; dc Ie« ^nti> 
mifcr- Mais loulc% »c rnmiincnt A dcs ilispositinns nnl^ricurea 
qo'on uppcllc appclits II y a irola tiortcs d'appilita. Lc prw- 
micr nalutcl, qui n*tL point conscience dc soi, ct <|ui eM la ten 
<l>ncc irrfiiitibic ilc loui Ics tlK-i pliykiqitCK i la sB(i»rai(ii>n dc 
Icurs besoms : le second Mcnsiiir. qtit a son mobile emcme dans 
Ics thoscs »enBil>le!i, el i)ui cat con cu pise ible ou irascible tour 
it tour; lc Iroiiiiimc intdlcvluel, dont t'objcl n'est ftppr^iable 
qu'A lit penaic. Cca appdiila eux mtmcfi pcuvcnt sc r^uiic i 
un seul principe cotnmun, i'amour. . . . L'ttommc est dflu6 d'on 

C«nto xvu. Readings on the Purgatorio. 


N) creator, oi crailura mai," — 

Cominciftet. — "figtiuol, fu %enxti amore, 

O (uluTalc, a d' nnimn ; * c tu ■) ii»l. 
Lo riataral c semprc iicnza crrorc : 

Mk r aliri> puutc crmr per malo obbielto, 95 

O per poco, a per troppn di vigorc.t 

Neither Crcjlor nor crealure" — he t»eg*n — "was 
cvef without Love, cither natural or spirituiil ; and 
tbou knowcd it. The natural {i.r. instinct left to 
iiadl) it always free froin error; but the other (the 
spiritual) can err ihrough (having) a txul object (as its 
«un), or from ikfcct or from excess of fervency {lit, 

Virgil next %bnwH when Icive errs, and when it does not. 

M«ntr« cb' rcli i nc' primi [ bcrt diretta, 
E nc' Kconili ai Klrsau niisufa, 
EM«r Bon pa& cation di na) dildlo : 

a^mat qui lui tu propre pour !» choscs honn^M et ptrfaitei, 
on plot*' - ^ — mc la ruiuiE ticnt Jk U fois dc U simplicity vt de 
r«ai« I.) nature divine, rhommi.' rfunil rn lui tous ccs 

*0 m^trnnit. u d'aaiaio.- Natural love is innatr instinct. 
iaa** ^ ««)<«» IB tnan'k Free Will 

i f eltrv ^44 tTTitT , . , vipyre : \Vc arc here »howii three 
■ajr* in whii^h Prcc Will can err ; (1) ft' m*to uf/ftic/f<>, ijc. by 
lcidicTatel> ctiMoinK ihc evil: — 

(a) by sptfVin - itnc'ii iiwn predominance and the abatiemenl of 

O*!-- lur Priit); 

(k) anij reading to b« oncKcIf abaned when one aees 

iMtc'a [it.i|(}ibi>urS iidvanrcmciil {Envy); 
If] rtrrmffK rf-irntini: and McktnK revenue (or cver>' little ia- 
nal (ond iniulliciently, and showing oneaelf 
■ ^ umo it i^r I'l'.'n i-ij*"'^, i.e. AcciJu). 
*l>lr Kood uniluly (/■rf (rti^fii I'ijfffw). 

ficr rkhct, or the abuK- of them {Avariu 


'Ccnce of the llcnii (£r«tuiiJily)- 

^. •■: ! - "-', in a note on tlii* pakaaf;e, uiya 

>e are iwn kind-* r desire 1 the lir&t (ari primi) ta 

Mhtck la natural. .^., .inlcd U) all Lreatures, thiDU£h 

6o Readings on the Purgatorio. Canto xvil 

As long a» it is directed towards the chicFcst excel- 
lencies (i.e. towards (ind and virtue), and in the 
secondary onea keeps it&clf within moderation. It can- 
not be the cause of sinful pleasure ; 

How love may be sinful. 

Ma quAiido at mal »i torcc, a con piit cura 

O con men chc non dee * corre nel Wcfic, 
Contra il fattorc adopra sua fallura. 

But when it is perverted to evil, or pursues the good 
with mure zeal or with Icbr than i( ought, then the 
crtatuie is working again&t its Creator. 

Benvenuto says this anitnal love can turn itself to work 
evil against one's neighbour through Pride, Iin\y, or 
Anger; it can be too solicitous after temporal goods, 
through Avarice, Gluttony, or Sensuality; and it can 
pursue the highest good with less zeal thao it ougl^^ 
through Accidie, or Stoth. 

And Virgil draws the following conclusion: — 

Quinci comprcndcr puoi t M csscr tonvunc 
Amor »ementa in vol A' o?ni vinute. 
B d' ogni operation chc mcrla pcnc i 

Hence thou mayest understand that love must be the 
seed within ^'ourselves of every virtue, as well as of 
every action that nierits puniuhnient. 

which they seek after that good with which they find their »e1f- 
picavrvation ■, ihc other love {nci stctrnJi) it animal, that h, of the 
mind, and ihin pnieenU from the will, in which there is power of 
election and free will. 

* m*n eke aou Jt* : I'hc love we owe to Cod is given in SI. Mark 
xii, JO : '* And thou slialt love the Lord thy Gnd with all thy heart, 
and with all thy sou), and with all thy mind, and with all thy 

i QutiKi (tmpreniter /noi, etc. Compare St. I'homsa Aquinas 
(Snmm. ThtvL pttib i, qu. xx, nrl. i): '' Primus molue voluitlatis el 
cujuilibel uppctitivae virtutiti est amor." And again ^qu. Ik, •• 
priHi.y. "Omnii actus appclitivx virtutiscx amorc *cu dilectionc 

-tnto mai. Readings im the Purgatorio. 6l 

And thus. Benvenoto remarks, wc have it tba( Love is 
the root and origin of even,- aclion, whether meritorious 
or tbcrcv'crsc, when it is turned aside lo evil, or runs 
after wha.t is good with greater or le&>t <iolicitude than 
it ouehl. 

Virgil next pniceeds to demonstrate what sins arise 
frera love of what n bad, and yet which may seem to be 
Kood. He first AhowK that such Love is always towards 
iDotbcr, and not to oneselt'. for Love always takes care 
of the person in whom it is set ; and every one desires 
Iris awn welfare 

Or percht mii noe pu6* dalla ^a1ule 
Amor del duo Huggctto t volgcr viaoy 
DsU' odio proptio son lo cc«e tute: 

Now inft«oiuch as love can never avert its sight from 
the wclEarc of us own subject [ix. the object loved), 
«1I thinicft (suKeptible of love) arc secure against 
tbcic own haUcd. 

Oae ncvrr wishes harm to oneself, unless under the 
mistaken impression that one 'k, doing onscif i^ood 
wbsn doing oneself harm: as, for instance, the un- 
happj- suicide does not deliberately imagine that 
ofaat he (ft doing is for his harm, but erroneously fancies 
it it for his goad : lo escape from disgrace, debts, or the 
bordcn of grief. 

V'ir]git next dmwK another important conclusion, 
bsocly. that no one can hate God. 

*«M/Mi: SeelnUltutnttanorthiipaBMjc, «nc in Si. Thomai 
tflMB*ft (S«anB. rA«ai. pari i,!^", qu. nxix, art- 4, Vtrun quii feiut 
■■w a^iti Mtfiam). The pauagc is too loriK to iiuotc t>crc. 

rsaQvll*. Scartajjini ciplamt thai xunxttta n a ictiDloxtic 
am, and a tta fsott teuncud Mn&c sif!ntlt«& "person.' Here 
hmm MJt* H Ui naan ibr being in whom tliia luvc rckidck. 

6s Readings on Ike Purgatorio. Canto xvii. 

E perchi Intcndcr nnn Mi pud divho, * 

H per Ke stunte, slcuno reser dal primo^ i lO 

Da qucllo odiarc o^n\ ufTctto 6 decmo.t 

And since no being can be thought to exist severed 
from llie First (Bein^). and standing; of itself (i.*, 
independently), every affection is removed (/f(. cut 
off) from haling That One. 

From the above intricate and difficult pa&saf^, we may 
affirm that Daiitc claims to have proved that, however 
ill-rcgulatcd Man's affections may be, ther« is no intention 
in him to hate or do harm to himself. He also shows 
that Man's hatred is never against God. And thence he 
draws ihc conclusion, that Man's hatred must be against 
his fellow men. 

Rcsta.l tie dividendo bene ettimo, 

*inUHdfr noti ti fui diviso . . . Jatjvimo: Compare St. Thomfts 
Aquinits i>'MM>n. VAff/. part ii. 2''*. <tu. xxxiv, wrt. i); "Odium eot 
quidem motuaappclitivx polcntix. (|uic non movetur nini ab aliquo 
ttpjiruheiiso. Deus autem dupliciter ab honiincapprehcndi potest : 
uno main eccundum seipnum, puts cum per esKcnlinm vidctiir; 
alio moda per effcctui »uos,ci]m Hvilicel inviubili* Dei pet raqua 
factn sunt tntclkcik cnnspiciuntur. Ucus autcm per esHentiam 
Buam eat ipsa l>oniia!i, qujim nullum habere odia polcel, quia dc 
mtione boni est u1 ainclur: et iden itnpoKuibile est quod aliqult 
vidcns Deuin per cKdcntiani. cum odio habcal. Scd clTeclUA cjuik 
aliqui Kunt qui nulla modn po»unt e&nc conlrarii %-u1unlati hum- 
anac ; quia cise <jivcrc el irtclligcrc ci^t ct appctibile ct Bm>bile 
omnibus; t\»ix nunt quidan cfTcL'tus Dei. llrulc cliatn &ccundilm 
quod Deus apprehenditur ut auctor horum ctfccluum. nan pci:e«t 
Minhaberi. Sunt uulem quid am cITecius Deiquirepuenant inardi- 
oatie voluniati »icut indietio ptcnge, c1 clLiin cohibitia pcccatorum 
per legem divinam : qux rcpusnunt valuniati dcpravat* per pec- 
catum : ct quantum nd cnnnidcratinncm talium cfTectiium, ab 
aliquibusDeuiodiohabcripotetit.inquantiim scilicet apprehtnditur 
pcccatorum prohibitnr, ct pccnamm intliclor." 

idtcitif HcfcuBcd in the sense of the Latin iteidtrt,\o cut off, 
to remove. Oiov. Villani (lib. k, cap. 226) alio uses it in the same 
scnac: "Non siconvcniva a Papa di muovcre Icauislioni sospeltc 
contra ta feilecatioiivn, tnu chi le movesM deciaere t eslirpare." 

XRatit: Scartaiiini 6a)^ ihi» ia a aeholaatic term equivalent 
to the Latin rtliit^uiliir. U a man can neither dcairc his own ill, 

to x%tl. Rcadingi on the PHrgaforio. 


Amor nisce in Ire modi* in \'o«tro limo. 

It fellaw« then — if ia my divt&ion I rightly estimate 
— thai the cvi) which is loved is thitt nf one's neigh- 
bour, and that self-same love takes itft birth tn your 
cUiy in three ways. 

Here VirRil, tn beginning to speak of the three worst 
«ios. touches on the first, which is Pride. The Froud 
tDMB, because he desires his own exaltation, wishes to 
see his neighbour abased. 

fe chi per ct*eT sua vjctn sofiprcsKi iij 

bpcn cccellctua, c sol per qucslo brama 
Ch* c* aia di sua grandezia in bauo mcwo.t 

There arc who by the abasement of their neighbour 
hope themselves to excel, and for this reason only 
crave to ace him cast down from hiK greatness. 

Bcnvmoto says that this afftclion of Pride is really and 
truly evil ; for it seeks one's neighbour's overthrow and 
ratn. He quotes the following extract from Pliny : 

Mr thai of iIk Pirri Betni^ and cannoi cilher hate himflcif 01 his 
Clialf, il (bOowa, ai a natural sequence, that the evil which he 
da^ I0VC can onljr be thai o( hi* neighbour, and tht* love of one's 
wrighVpiir'ir hurt may bate a triple oiigin. 

*aa In mpdi: Tontma«^n well define* the three wayn: " Non 
^ paA duamw volcr male ad altri chc al pro^Mmo ; c qucsto o per 
tflJOM deU' alirui polerc c onore, per tcma di pcMdrrc quant' altri 
SB ac^iiiata, o jikt irm di male faito o tcniitto. Queiti (re abutu 
MTMBof* |Mr];anu ax' i;iri di tottn, pcrchc piugravi. Orarena 
M* aoDoce tnordtnatu o per ticpidc//a, c dicc^i accidia : o per 
tW9pB ardore. e pud ipintcrva volercoro. cibo,pia(;«rt. Avahiia, 
e^aa fiii rea. rta lOtto a £oIa ; gola sotto a lu^suria, che i men 
hataaa >!■■ cioia.' 

t ir—a cA' r* (M . . . n i€Uo umio : Compare St. Thomas 
A^pioBi {liumm- TluoL pan ii, 2**, qu. cl»i, art. j) : " Supcrbia 

ftft il niT ■ fT^"! r"r~'''. in quantum ck amorc caunatur 

anMHApiMi alios tuperandi ; quod proprie pertinet ad 


Riodimgs on Ike Purgatorio. Canto xvil. 

" What should a wretched man be proud of? Docs he 
not know that he is a receptacle of squalor, a home of 
sorrows, a possession belonging to death ? " Benvenuto 
adds: " Nothing is so odious to God as Pride. Verily, 
while some other sins have their excuse, even though 
undeservedly, Pride has none ; no more has its own 
dauKlUer Envy, which follows close in the footsteps of 
it8 mother. Therefore the proud mannikin has much in 
him of the nature n( a monster." 

Virgil next touches upon the second kind of the love 
of evil, from which springs Envy. The envious man, 
because he dreads that his neighbour's prosperity may 
be the cause of his own not bein^ so Rreat. is grieved at 
the other's happiness. So he goea on to say : — 

it chi * porters, fsrnziaf orrore e (sma 
Terni: di pcrder perch' «llri »t>rmonti, 
Ondc h' atirista ^ che il contrario ama ; iio 

There are who fear to lose power, favour, honour and 
renown should others mount above them, and so 
much do they take it to heart, that they desire the 

*Echipod4rt. . . Timt di ferdcr, ct sci], : Connpare St. Thomss 
AquinaB (Samn. ThtvL pars ii, a^*, qu- xxxvi, urt. i) : " Invidiu ctt 
IriMiiiii dc alicni) bonis. . . . Objcctum triniilia: mntum 

Eropnum. Coniingit uutem id quod est alicnum bonum, appre- 
cndi ui malum proprium ; «t Kccundiim hoc d« bona atieno potdt 
«s»e trituitia. Scd hoc cuntingil duplicitcr; . . . Alio modo 
bongm ulteriu!) xsttimalur u( malum pioprium, in quantum e«t 
diminutivum proprix glohfc vcl cxcellentifc ; cl hoc modo de bono 
alteriuKintiiMturinvidia; el iiJe<^prieui)>u^<le iDis bonis l»mine>in- 
vident in quihus esl gloria, et in quibus hnminet aniant hono- 
rari et in i>pinion« cnc." Comp«re also Conv. i, ii, IL 117-13}: 
" Lv invidioK) ppi argomcnta, non bianinuindo di non sapere 
dire colui che dice, ma biasima quelle chc t tnaleha dclla sua 
openi. per tdrre (disprcgiando 1' opeta da quella parte) a lui 
en« dice onore e (u»ia: siccome colui chc biasima il fcrru d'una 
•padit. non per biasimo dare al ferro, ma a tutta I' open del 

Canto XVII. ReaJings oh the Purgaiorio. 


" And mark well," note<t Benvenuto, "that it is especially 
among near neighbours that Fnvy reigns supreme: thus 
you will 6nd that the King of the Romans does not envy 
the Kine of the Fanhians, nor vice vemt; but, when 
their empires bordered, their in ulua I envy ivasg^reat. Do 
not our own troubles weigh hard enough upon us with- 
out our talcing in otheni to torture us ? The old pro- 
verb says: Envy is blear-eyed, and cannot see. flcnce 
neighbourhood and prosperity arc the parents of Envy. 
What can be sadder than Envy, which only feeds on 
ills, and is tortured by prosperity ? Well did Alexander 
of Macedon say that envious pei-sons were nothing else 
than the plague of his life. And certainly that was a 
weighty argument from the lips of a flighty young man {et 
eerU verhum grave erat levis juvenis)' 

And now Virgil passes on to the third kind of evil 
love, from which springs Anger, Hcnvenuto observes 
that the angry man longs to be revenged on those who 
hoU him of small count, for man is at all times eager to 
be honoared. 

Bd t ch) per Ingiuria* p*r ch' arfonti 
SI cht si (a dclia vendetta Khiotio; 
B tal convicn cbc il male altrui impronti.t 

*iapmiaz TatninwcJo interprets thin "inju«lke" in Mrro- 
tnnHfia of which he cilc* Viig. /Kn. iit, 255-157 ■ — 

" S«d non anle dalam cingctis manibus urbem, 
I>uat7i va» difa fnmK noclrzquc irjuria cKdis 
AmboaK sabigit mAliK abtumcrc mensaa." 
* imfmti Butis-iys: 'cio* f«cci«,ofacei« fare, male nl nimico 
-a" Tl»e primafv meaning cfiM*fwi<*rti»"loj;ivi: the iinprcsti, to 
>!(. to cnin," and the Voc. dtlia Crusea &ays tit't in (hinpauaccil 
' «Kd bcnntivcly : " vio^ rnttU ftvanti (il maW allfui) cfliKMn- 
-!».' LomtMrdi inlerpicU : ■• chicda, cerchi," and Donkin IDUI. 
■ ^•^z L*»ciiacts, London, 1864) »»>■■ it i» deriTcd from ll»c 

n. B 


Readings on Ike Purgalorio. Canto xvii. 

And there are who 

to feel such resentment 

for an injury, that they become greedy for vengeance; 
and such must needs contrive hurin to others. 

Bcnvenuto enlarges on this : " And note, that although 
this disease of Anger destroys and tortures others, yet 
it often docs so to its po&sc!isor: hence, though Homer 
has said that Anger is sweeter than honey, yet nothing 
seerRH nmrc bitter. The Roman Senator Carlius, a most 
violent-tempered man, once, bein^ in a great I'agc with 
a friend of his, who always acquiesced in everything he 
said, exclaimed : * Do for goodness' sake say something 
contrary, that \vc may be two persons,* Thus it is that 
we make every tittle word into a capital offence ; nor is 
there any stumbling block so great to us as our pride. 
But the noblest form of revenge is to spare ; and there- 
fore the greatest of orators once said in praise of one 
of the noblest of leaders, that he never forgot anything 
except a. personal injury. And Adrian, when he was 
made Emperor, said to one whom he held to be his 
deadliest enemy: 'Thou hast escaped.' That was in 
truth a noble, magnificent, and imperial speech." 

Virgil sums up his discourse on these three kinds of 
ill-directed Love by adding: — 

Qucsto tfifotme amor quB^ipi) diiuKto 

Si pUnK« : or vo" ch« tu dell' altro intcndc, laj 

Che corre a] ben con ordine corrolto. 

This threefold Love ts wept for down below there (in 
the Aret three CoTnices). Now I wiah thcc to under- 
stand about the other (kind of love), which tons alter 
good in an ill-regulatvo manner. 

Virgil, wishing to distinguish the love of good, and 
show what sins are committed against it, invites Dante's 
attention to that Love he described in verM: ()$,chepu<:itc 
errar per malo obhtttlo, o per poco, o per trtippo iJi vigore. 

Canio XVII. fteaMngs on the Purgatorio. 


And then, wishing to show huw spiritual stoth arises, 
be first )my» down a general principle necessarily applic- 
able to it. 

CUacun CMiAisAmcittc un ticne apprendc,* 

Ncl qual •■ qucti I' animo, e diaira : 

Perdti di Kiupiet lui ciaxcun contendc 
Se [cnio Mnarc t in lut vcder vi tira. 130 

0« lui acquintar, quctla cornice, 

Dopo poito pcntcr. vc rc martira. 

Erary one, in a confuted son of vny, has a concep- 
tioa of a good wherein his mtnd may rcKt, and longs 
(x It : ever)' one therefore strives to attain unto it. 
IfalocKiiih Love (alone) attracts you tosec that good, 
or to oDtain it, this (Pounb) Cornice, after due peat> 
icDCe, torments you for iL 

Only on coodilion of a Kcnuine repentance before death. 

*iiMmM4i .* Qiolieiti »ay* ttui thin word " ha ^ui » pArcr mlo un 
t fCnifklU T COtnplcaMk clic mal »t polrcbbc allnincnti c-«primcrc. 
Smm qaclU cumc conrukk co^izionc tnista ad amorc che 
■Mis;-- ' 'inmo bene: e il sollecUo afTtrrar che facciamo 
oo'fio^ ■ qucita idea." Compare Itoclhius, Cottol. PkiUn. 

Iti^pfCM. r. ' i.iinnU moMahtimcurH, qiiam tnultiphbium aiudiorum 
liter cscn^ct, divervo qu<dcm wilWk pttfccdit, Kcd ;iit unum tamen 
beatttwlJDu ftncRi nilitur p^rxcnirc. Id nulcm cut bonum, quo 
K/am adefCii nihil ulleriut deuderan- queut. Quod r|uidcfn o«t 
mwiiiHii Himmuai honunini. vunclaqiic intra bc boiia cuntineiu. 
. . . Ilunc . - . dircrMi Itamitc rnurtulci onincs conanuir adipisci. 
Cm cnin nKtiiibu* hominum vcri Irani naturalitcf inaciia cupi- 
dkaa: ted ad UIm drvius error abiluirit . . . Sed ad huminum 
mtittmm rrvcftor: quorum animus, et aicahgante mcmoha, tamen 
^'**q'w •Dfnniam repetit ; feed, vclut ebfiit*, domum quo tramite 
rewrtaitu, iptorai. 

Miataamvn : "Talc CAucetlo dcM' Accidiaci porge S. Tommato 
(SaiaM. Tktol pais li, i'*. qxi. tixv, art i) : cot quale s' accorda 
u Poets, che mciuta al quino cerchio, dupo aver ragionato 
A Dm. iccwpe di Bene iitprcmo che acqticta ogni dcsidetio 
ddT MrtcBiKrMc crvalur^ ao^iun^ [li«rc arc quoted II. Ijo-iji 
of tfaeicat] k pamk vtttm ^ a(^mil«rt (c^t} ncKoano ct tint amen tc 
•tdofrpio temunc caudtoio dclU canU, la conicmplajcione e Topcra, 
• iiiiiiiiii ta dopt'ia cafiflne onde immalinconisce e %' atlcdU 
t a c e i ^ few-'* (Pnca, pi. 176-177). 

B 2 


68 ReaJings on /Ad Purgatario. Canto 

coutd the soul come to Purgatory at all ; failing this, it i 
would have to go among the Lost in Hell. A 

Vir^ii describes another good from which spring three 
other sins. 

Altro ben i chc non b I* uom folicc ; 
Non i fcliciti. non i la buona 
Esscnza,* d' ogni buon frolto c radicc.t t 

There is another good which does not render man 
happy : it is not happiness, it is not the good essence, 
the fiuit and root of every good, 

Bia^ioli says that Dante means to speak of all earthly 
pussessinnit, which men strive after, accordinf* to the 
different dispositions of their minds, as the good beyond ^ 
which there is nothing to be desired. Therefore onefl 
man toils after liches, another after honours, another 
after great power, another after reputation. But thi» 

*la fruonu F.t%enxa : " Solos Dcusest bonu» pcrsuam cssenliam. 
Unumq^uodquc cnim dicilur bonum, secgndum qu«d est pcitcctum. 
Pttfcctio autcm Rlicuju& rei triplex est. Prima quidcm, sccundilm 
quod in £u» ei(s« cunstituitur; seeunda verJi prnttt ei aliqua acci- 
dentia suncradduntur ad suam pcrfeclam oprralionL-m neceuano, 
tcrtia vcro perfectio alivujuti est per hoe quid alrquid nliud atiin^t 
oicut lincm; utpote prima pcffcclio ignis conaiiiUt in c^c, quAd 
babct per miulhi (ormam &ut»tantialcm ; sccuticla vcr& rjii» per* 
f^clio consistit in calididate, levitate et sicciiatc, et hujusmndi ; 
(ertia vcr& perfevtiu ejus cat, secundum qaoi in loco muo quicocil. 
Hkc aiHcm triplex pctfcctio nuiti crcaiocompclit secundum suain 
cucntinm, ted aoli Dcu, cujua aolius cssccitu est svura esse, el 
cui non sdveniant aliqua accidentia; sed quK dc aliis dtcuntui 
aecidentaliier, tibi conveniunt essentialiter, tit e%%t potenlem, 
aapientem, ct alia hujiumodi ; ipie ctiain ad nihil aliud ordi- 
natur Etcut ad fincm, sed ipse csl ullimuH Anis omnium rerum. 
Unde mantfcstum est quod solus Ucut habct omnimodam pctfec- 
tioncm accundiltn suam cascniiam : ci idc6 tolui eit bonun per 
tuam esacntiam." St. Thorn. .Aquin. Svmm. Tktol. para i, qa. vi, 
an. 3. 

fogni bvrni frittia e raditt : According to St. Thoma* Aquinaa, 
Ood » Ihc toot and the Truit ^r all ^uod. I.Siimm. Tht^i. pars i, 
qu, vi, an. 4). "UnumquiHlquc dicitui bonum bnnilale divina. 
fticut primo pnncipto exemplan elfectivo, ct linali loiius bftnilaln.'' 

Cuilo XV11. ReaJings on Uu Purgatorio. 


n not bappinc&s, for it docs not esiclude every other 
desire: it is not the Good Essence, that is. God, the 
root and the fruit of all ^od, the origin of every 
Heavenly Grace, and that Good in which all other 
Roods arc contained. 

In closing the discourse Virgil explains to Dante 
tbat he purposely leaves the exact description of this 
Love of temporal good somewhat indefinite, in order 
that Dante may- work it out for himself by pergonal 

L* Minor ch' ad eufl troppo s' abbandono. 

13* topri not *i piMnKc per Ire cerchi ; 

Ma come tnpaniio ci mgiona. 
Taccioto, acciocchi tn pei ic nc cerchi." * — 139 

The Love that yields itself too much to this ia wept 
fbf in three Cornices above us ; but in what wfi>- it 
it apolicn of as tripartite, I say nothinj; thereof, in 
order that (bou maycst investigate it for thysell." 

The disquisition that we have laboured throufjh, as 
well as tome forty lines in the next Canto, are a true 
ipedmcn of ihc scholastic philosophy prevalent in the 
time of Dante. 

\^liat is known as the Scholastic Philosophy may 
be coQHdered lo have flouriRhed from Scotus Hrigena 
in (he IXth ccntur)' to William of Occam at the end 
vl the .\I\'th ccntur>-. Its chief activity ranged from 
Ibc Xlth century onward, and it reached the climax 
of de^'elopment with Thomas Aquinas and Duns 
Scotvs towards the end of the Xllfth and be^'inning 

ibc XM'th centuries. The term doctor seAc/asirCHs 

*tmM: C«atp»n Ckr*. iti, cap. $, II. i9.|-icir>: "SJccome omai. 
HVandUllcbedetto i,fu<^e vctkrechi tinnobila ingcgno. al quale 
« buo OD pou) dj btick laKiue." 


Readings OH the Purgatorio. Canto mi. 

was originally applied to any teacher in the schools 
attached to mc(li.Yval ecctesiastical (otindalions, but 
came to mean specially one who occupied himself with 
dinlvcttcs, and the thc«lof(ical and philosophical 
questions arising therefrom. Briefly stated, scholas- 
ticism is the application of Aristotelian logic to the 
doctrines of the Church. Duns Scotus placed less 
reliance upon the power of reason than did Thomas 
Aquinas. The followei*s of the one were known as 
Scotists and the other as Thomists. The great work 
of Thomas Aquinas, Sumtna Theoli^iae, written about 
1272, is an encyclopedic synopsis of all the theo- 
logical and philosophical science of the age, arranged 
in logical forms. It was deeply studied by Dante. 


Canto xvni. Rtadings on tlu Purgalorio. 




Ix the last Canto Dante showed how all sins have 
their origin in some kind of Love. In this Canto he- 
dacnb«<( the pur^lion of Accidie or Spiritual Sloth,' 
which comes from some remissness in Love for the only 
True Good. 

Benvenuto divides the Canto into five parts. 

tm Ou First Diviston, from ver. i to ver. 39, Virgil, 
at Panic's request, continues his profound disquisition, 
and give<« a dciinilion of Love. 

/« Ou &e<oHd Division, from ver. 40 to ver. 75, Virgil 
dein up 3 doubt which his arisen in Dante's mind in 
oonwqucnceof ihc dcfinilion. 

tn th4 Third Diviiioti, from ver. 76 to ver. 105, the 
penalty of the Slothful is described, after that Dante 
has given an indication as to the time of day. 

/a the Fouith DiviiioH, from ver. 106 lu ver. 129, 
Dante relates hi* conversation with the Abbot of St. 
JEcou at Verona. 

/« tJu Fifth Divitim, from ver. 130 to ver. 145, Virgil, 
by way of teaching Dante how Accidie is to be avoided, 
■bowb htm some of it!i unfortunate cficcts. 


Readings an the Purf-aloria. Canto xviil. 

Division I. — Dante's mental questionings have been 
partly quieted, partly aroustd. What is that Love, the 
right or wrong direction of which is the cause, on the 
one hand of all holiness, on the other of a!) evil ? He 
still has some doubts on the subject, and leaves it to 
be inferred that he has reasoned within himself as to 
whether enough has been said on what the Scholiasts 
termed the " Matter of Ix)vc," and has come to the 
conclusion that there has not. He adds that Virgil 
restores his confidence by telling him, in words which 
he does not quote, that he need not be afraid to speak 
out the doubts thai he feels. 

Vauo &vea fine a! ttio ngionamcnto 
L' alto Uottore, cd attcnio guardava 
Nclla mia vUla* %' ia pares cnntcnto : 

Bd io, cui nuova scte ancor fiu);ava( 

t)i fuor taccva, c dentro dicca : — " Fotm 5 

Lo irD|ipo donandar, ch' io to, jtii grava," t 

Ma quel padre veracc, che >' accone { 
Del timido voter (;he non *' apriva, 
Pariando, di parlare ardir mi parse. 

* Nelia mia viila : Scarlaiucini prcfcm inlerprclint; this, "into 
my cj'cx," and quotes Conv. iii. S, II. 77-90: '"I," Anima . . . 
dimosirasL nri;li occhi lanio mantfesta, zhe conosccr ai pui^ la una 
prc^cnte pasiionir. chi bene la mira, Ondc cnncir>sKiBC<uachi sci 
pnH)iir>nl ^iano prtrpric dell' Anima umnna . . . di nulla di 
*]ucKtc puolc r Anima esscrc poaaionatn, chc alia Rncttra dcgli 
occhi non vci;na la scmbian/a. ■« per i;rande viiti non si chiude." 

i gli tff.iT'ii : Compare tnj. iii, ;g-Si :— 

" Allor con icli occhi vctj^oe'ioni c ba«i>i. 

Temctida no '1 mio dir rH fua*e grave, 
Infino al fiumc di parlar mi irssisi." 

I i'aetoru Del timiJo voter: Virgil had read Dante'* thouKhtsas 
in Saf. xxiii. 15-30 ; ai> in Purg. xv, 137-IJ9 ; and as in Pur. iv-ii, 
7-ix, ■hero, (lurini; Dante's tnterk-icw with his fsreat-grcat-grand- 
fvithcr Cacclagolda, Hcatrice obscrvitig in Dante's Ucc a wish to 
auk rurlhci qucations, and his hculattun to do(Ki,encounxci him 
to tpcnk out : — 

Canto xnil. Readings on the Purgatorio. 73 

The exalted Teacher had put an end lo his dis- 
OMirae, and was ]ooking attentively into my face, (to 
sec) if I appeared satisfied : and I, whom a fresh 
thim was already goading on, was oulwardly silent, 
and within wai saying: " Perchance the (00 much 
qucMiontn^ I make is giving him annoyance." But 
uut Inie I-'ttther, who comprehended the timid uiKh 
that did not ahow itself, by speaking, emboldened me 

He mtist have spoken u-ords like those of Beatrice 
i,P*r. xv\i, y-12. Sec note.) Dante with renewed con- 
fidence proceeds lo unburden himself of hU doubts, but, 
before doing so, he breaks out into an exclamation of 
affection and gratitude to Virgil Uenvenuto says Ihat 
be doca hiro honour by a cumulative process. First he 
^jcafcs of him as atlo Dattou, then padre verace, and now 
I calh him Statitro. 

I Dante explains to Virgil that he had been telling 
■^ilD what Love did, and in what it was the cause either 
^^■good or of evil, but he says : Thou hast nut yet told 

C)ad'U>^ — "Maeatro," il mia vcd<r m' avviva 
iQ ncl too lumr, ch' io discerno chiaro 
Quanio la lua ragion poni o deitcriva : 

Perb ti vngfi. dolc« Padre caro, 

Clic mi di'noMii atnore, a ctii riduci 
Okiu buono operarc c il ftuo contraro." t 



■* Po-cIm mia di>nna ; * Manda fuor la vampa 
I>clluo diiio,' mi di^»c, '»t ch' clla csca 
SccBalfl bci>c itclla mtcma ntampa : 
NimjMnhi nmlra cimiMcvnia crccca 
Per liMi fiarlarv, ma perchd I' atui 
A iltf la M'tc, Il che r unm li meaca.' " 
* ilaatn : Sec Ku*Jit(> oa lk4 Injcrno, vol, ii, p. 434, footnote + 

iemtrwm for nMiiraw. See Nannucci {Ttcrica tki tlomi, pp. 
k^t^fj): ' iW Iwmi t ^mtM t a dti aemi ierminali in ano, trio." etc., IO 

74 limJings on the PitrgaiorK. Canto xvill. 

Whereupon [ : " Muster, my sight is bo vivilied in 
thy light, that I clearly discern ;iil thai thy reaNoning 
imports or descrilKK ; therefore I he^ ihee, dear gentle 
Fniher, to define for me thai Love to which thou 
ascribcRt every good action and its contrary." 

Virffil answers Dante, and begs liim to give the closest 
attention to his words, .is the subject is intensely 

— " Drii/a,"— diwe.— " vir me V acute luci 
UclJo inldlclto, c fieti manrfvi^lo 
L* error dei ciechi die si finno duei. 

** Direct," said he, " on me the keen eyes of the under- 
standing; and (then) will be clear to thee the error 
of those blind ones who make themselves leadeis. 

The error of the blind leaders of the blind is that of the 
Epicurean philosophers, who contended that, as a man's 
desires naturally turned to good, every such desire must, 
by that fact alone, be >vorEhy of praise, and ought 
therefore to be gratified. 

In the lines that follow here we are reminded of the 
beautiful figure in the last Canto but one (xvi, 86). 

L' aninio, ch' ^ creato ad amar ptcsto. 
Ad ogoi coaa i mobile chc piHce, 
TokIo chc dal piacerc in atto i deolo. * 


The soul, which is created prone tn Love, is readily 
moved towards ever}*thing that pleases, ito soon as 
by pleasure it i.-c louKed to action. 

which he speaks o( the Rreal frequency of these elisions ainonic old 
Italiiin wnten,(.£. (citilraro for ctftttaho; nicnuini (or twnsario : 
aevtruiro lar ttoetrsurio, elc. Compare Pir^;. viii, ^, 95;— 
"Com* ci pflflavH, e Sordcllo a ii il iraase 

Diccndo : ' Vedi tdi tl noslro avT«rsarx\' " 
* io flWii i dtito: On ihis Duli obseri-o : "Qui dimostra che 
questa naturale polenxia d' arasre stassi chctn ncll' anirao t non 
si produce in alto, t« non provocata dal piaeere." 

Canto XVI 11. Readtt^s on Ok Purgatono. 


Ekovcnuto reminds us that we read in the last Canto 
Uuit neither Creator nor creati-d thing was ever wilh- 
oot some kind of Love, and thai thvrcfure the sou) is 
Btiirally inclined towards ever>tbing that, at fir&t 
tight, sccTDS pleasing to it, as soon as it is awakened. 
and set in motion from the delectation born within it ; 
[Benvenuto reads piacer innato, instead o( piaare in 
an*). Just as when you see a beautiful woman, her 
feno enter* through the windows of your eyes into 
Ihc chamber of your mind, and moves it to love her. 
iltbou^h she is absent and the mind will never he- 
boid her. 
Vii|pl explains this ; — 

VoMrB apprcfwivB da euer vcrace * 

TncK' inlcftiione.t e dentro x voi la apiesa, 

SI cbc r animo Ad cs** voider £ac«. 

*ia tU0t Mr***; The facully of apprehending;, pcKcivinf;, 
tad c owpr c bcM di Bit. i» %tX in molion by ihc reality of cxtcrniil 
(ban roanil a\, and this develop* in ufc the with to ahovv it 
w^ Bj i of Xjoi.*. Mr. Kutlcr extracts Itom Manuel's notcu to 
>Mf w ti I " Apptrhcnhion or conceptiun coniiHts in ihc power 
>hii ti the miod lias of iatn\m^ an linage of attributes. Ima^ies 
la faiiMiJ an fint tiitentiuns uficia inUiligibiits) as when wc 
f^^gi tb* inditidoal S^icratn an man, white, etc. tiecond 
arc obuined by abstractin); the relation* ol fitHt 

Id oae another, as bumanitv, whiteness, etc First 

are prcdicabic, second not." 
'.' TIk achoiaalic pliilotuiphcr* called imaccs. nr 

of thrnp*, by the lumcs of " iftrUt" at " int/ntiontt." 
See V -■ iua ViUrum Tlue>i<:it;orum loiUlionfs ixpticantur, 

CoIdT'-- r7* " S- SJkrt'iM tarn ixf''tisa, ^tmm imfrttia 

tkaba sxpc '-" "' -■='-/•> qnia per eam potcntw nttcndil, stve 
«i«nAi tn otijc h. '. Compare Varchi, L' IlrniHuno, Venice, 
(;■ ii "ll pidare, o vero favellair humano rs.1eriore 

k he nanifettare ad alcuntt i c^nntti dtir anime, 

«c^i(* ... Ho detto • (oaettti JtlF ohiiki, [>crchi 

9 tae '-' i prtncJ|mJtnentc mostrirc di fuori qucllo, 

(fecfh > ilcnlri) ncll' aniino, o vcro ircntc ; cioi 

i^a Unrivij nella virtu lantantica si fiherbano le 

^^p^ a vcru »i.,iiiiu>iini dcUc com, le quali i I'iliMofi chiamano 


Readings on tkt Purgatorio. Canto xviii. 

B fx, rivolto,* in vtr di In si picea. 23, 

Quel picgarc i amor, qucllo t natura 
Che per piacer di nunvo in voi ti Icfta.f 

Vour apprehensive facultj' draws an image froni some- 
thing really existing, And displays it within you, so 

hofn sffiit, hora iii/;ii;ioit(, c noi !c diciamo propriarnenic om- 
(flii, c tnl vnlta peti\ieri, n vcro inUHdimrnti, e bene sp«BM> can 
kliri nuini." A i^icat number o( Camincniatiirs including tbc 
I'lV. dtUa Cntsctt, Scartazxini, Camcrini, Polcito. Andrcoli, 
TommaB^o and otheri, give this reference wrongly, simply 
writing " Varchi, Hrcol. ag." 

<*£ sf, rivollo, CI set).: See Ozanam, Danlf tl Is Pkiios^pkU 
CathoU^uc, p. 131: " Au9(it^t qu'un objet ae pr6«enu capable 
de pkire, it nous rtvcille par unc sensation dc plaisir. La 
faculty qu'nn nomme appriheninon cntre en exercise, elle per- 
9oit le rappnri dc I'objcl avcc not heaoin*, die Ic d^velappe 
junqu'ii fuire que I'iine xe retiiurnc vers lui ct s'y incline ; ccttc 
tnclm&tion cat ramour, ct Ic pUisir nouvcau dont ccttc mcdifi- 
cation est accompaKnte, iiou» la rend chirt ct en raftmc temps 
durable. Puis Iflmc fhranlie cntrc en moiivemen!, ce mouv-e- 
ment spirituel est It dfsir. te diiir re trouvc tie rcpon que dana 
In joiiisKRncc, c'ciit'&-dirc dHnii la possciuinn dc I'objet aimi." 
Giobcrti in his commentary remarks on these words ; " Questa i 
un' anali»i rlKonixa che AH un laKK'o della eccelien/a di Dante in 
filaaofia. Toglinc 1' invdgiio poelico, e alcuni accessorii peri- 
patetic!, c NirA dcKno delta Kcienia odierna." Htngiuli says 
that the follnwiiig worde of ihc Cvnvivio (lii, 2, II. i8-3j}^ adoiir- 
ably explain thiipaMiuKc: "Amorc, vcramentc piKliando c aot* 
tilmcnte conKidcrando, non i aliro chc unimcnio ■pirittiak 
deir anima e delta cou amata; net quale unimentc di propria 
aua natura I' anima corrc toftto o lardi. nccondochi i libera o im- 
pcdila." And It, 56-67; "E perocchi il suo oKscre dipcndc da 
Dio, c per qucllo si conscr^'a. naturalmcntc disJa c vudIc a Dio 
cucre unita per lo luu cmcic lortificarc. B pccocchc nclle bon- 
tadi delta Xstura la ra^'on^ ^' moKtra l>ivina, vicnc che natural- 
mcntc r aiiiniB uinuna cun quelle per via spirituiilc si unisce 
Iiintn pill Inslo e pit! foric, quunln quelle p'lir appiiono per- 
Icttc. 1.0 quale appaiinieiitot lailo, (ccnndoche U cunoKccnta 
dell' annua i chiara o impediCM. U questn united quello chc 
noidicema Amorc." Therefore, Bingioli adds, as it is natural la 
the Koul to desire to unite ilBcll to liod, at, a support to iti ex- 
iaicnce, no, by titfc motive, it is natural for it to unite itself to 
the gondnvssca of nature, which is a radiance of the Chief Good. 

tsi liga: is binding itself anew within you; or. is striking a 
fresh fooi. 

Canto xviu. Ii<ttdmgs on the Purgatorio. 77 

thst it makes the mind turn to it. And if thus turned, 
it (the mirul) inclines towards this (tmi^ge), that iacli- 
cntioa is Love; it ia Nature, which b^ plosure is 
bound in you with a new tie. 

Scnvenato reminds us that there is nothing in the 
intettcci that was not iir&t in the senses, and that did 
aot enter into the soul by sight or hearing;. Love 
tbcfcfore is shown to be the inclination or the soul 
towards a thing that is in itself agreeable, and which 
the external senses have oH'crcd to ii. 

And now Virf^il, having given the definition of Love, 
■htww. b)* a comparison its power and cfRcacy. 

Ptti uMDe il Coco movcu in nllur>. 

Perls uia (ortna* ch' i nala a italirc 

Lii i dore pift in 9u* mAtcru) ilara ; 30 

Coii r animo pmo enira in dinire, 

Ch' i RMto apiritatc, c mai non posa 
Fin chc la cosa amata il fa gioirc. 

Then even as lire moves upwanis, by virtue of tts 
torm which is made for riitin^ to where it dwells more 
tnitadcBWat; so does the captive soul enter into a 

* Pit U %ma ftrm* : This Scartazzini cxplBina: " Fcr la mik 
•■liirs eaanuiale." He adds that in the nchoUMii: plimscolD^ 
/wrma I* tKnt which tpvri (he entity of cfcryllitng, that, owin); 
t» wbich, (hingi "r« ju»t prctis^ly what they ate. The /oraM 
rf bK, thcfelcKe, » ita evKCice, that which mahcs it to b< fire. 

^Ld: Tlial ia to say. the splterc of the Moon which the 
Mcteata tbovcht wm the xpherc of fire :— 

**TuUa U sferi v-arcano del fuocA." 

ArioUo, fW. Fur. xNxiv, at. 70. 
TWsMc'cnts did not know that the air, by its specific |;ravity, 
Arm* 6rx npwmrdSi and thoucht it wan made to rise naturally. 
Diete sajv, tn Ctmv. lii, j, II. s-ij . " Onde i da upere che 
taac«»a ea«a . . . ha il mo tpeiiak amore. R ptrA il (uoco 
[ascca4«J alia circnnferenra di noprs, lunKO il cicio dclU luna, c 
f«ri f K qipr e *«le a quctln." Compare TasM>, Otr, Libtr, vii, 

" S' al2if volaodo alle celesli siMre, 
Cosw va fdoco al ciel per sua natura." 



Re^ings on the Pufgaiorio. Canto xvii. 

could the soul come to Purgatory at all; failing tins, it 
would have to go among the Lt)st in Hell. 

Virgil describes another good from which spring three 
other sins. 

Allro ben t che non Ta I' nom felice ; 
Non b fctidlA, non i la buona 
Esscnsa,* d' ogni bunn frutto e radicc.t 155 

There is another good which does not render man 
happy : it is not happiness, it ia not the good essence, 
the fiuit and root of every good. 

Uiagioli says that Dante means to speak of all earthly 
possessions, which men strive after, according to the 
different dispositions of their minds, as the good beyond 
which there is nothing to be desired. Therefore one 
man toils after riches, another after honours, another 
after great power, another after reputation. But this 

* la btoii.i BssMia : " Solus Ueiis csi bonus per suam ectetittHtn. 
Unumquodquccnim diciturbonum, secundum ■quod est pcrfcctum. 
PcTfcciiu ttutcm slicujuK rci iripkic vn. Primnquiileni, nccund^m 
quod in suo »bc cuntxituituri nccundii verfi prout ci aliqun ftcci- 
denlU supcraddunlur ad suam pcrfcclam opcrationcm nrccxxuno, 
tcrtiB vcTo pcrfeccJA alicujtit est per hoc (|iiAd aliquid nliud allineit 
Hicut fincra ; ulpote prima perfcctio itiniii conajtitit in cstte, qnM 
habcl per iubtti {armain vubstantialeir ; necunda verb rju» fier- 
feclio consistit in calididntc. kvitatc ct aiccitatc, ct hujunmodt; 
tenia vcrA perfcctio cju& tM, Hccundflm quod in Inco xuo quirscil. 
Haec auUm triplex pcHrctin null! crriito competit sccundCinn suam 
eMentiam. sed soli Dvo, cujus soIiub esicntia est tuum cxxc, ct 
cui non advcniunt aliqun accidentia; Kcd quic dc aliii dicuniur 
accidcntaiiicr, sibi conwniunt essentia litci, ul »t>c potenlcm, 
tapientcm, ct alia hujuimodi; ipse ciiam ad nihil aliud ordi- 
nitur sicut ad fincm, sed ipse cat ultimus finis omnium renim. 
Undc manireslum est quod aoKii Oeuit habet ornnimodam pcrfcc- 
tioncm Rccund^m suam esBcntiam; cl idr6 solus est bonu* p«r 
■nam eitsentiam." St. Tbom. Aquin. Summ, Thtol. pars i, qa. vi, 

art. 3. 

io^ni bttoi Jrntio t vadui : According ta St. Thomas Aquinai, 
God la the root and (he fruii of all good. {Sitmm. TMeol. pars i, 
qa. vi, aft. 4). " Unumquodijuc diciturbonum bonitatc divina, 
Bicut primo principio cxcmpUn ctfcctivo^ ct linali loiiua boniialia." 

Canto XVti. Readings on the Purgatorio. 


is not happiness, for it does not exclude every other 
(lc&ire: it h not the Good Essence, that is, God, the 
root and the fruit of all good, the origin of every 
Heavenly Grace, and that Good in which all other 
RDoda are contained. 

In closing the discourse Virgil explains to Dante 
that he purposely leaves the exact dcscriptioR of this 
Love of temporal good somewhat indefinite, in order 
that Dante may work it out for himself by personal 

L' amor ch' ad esco lioppo s' abbandona, 
Di sopra not si pinnae per tre cerchi ; 
Ma come inpanito si rajtioiui, 

Taedolo, acciocetii lu per Ic nc cerchi." * — 139 

The I-ove thai yields itself too much 10 this is wept 
(or in three Cornices alx>ve ue ; but in what way it 
ift Hpoltcn of as tripartite, 1 say nothing thereof, in 
order that thou mayest investigate it for thyself." 

The disqui&ition that we have labnurcd through, as 
well as some forty lines in the next Canto, are a true 
^Kcimcn cf the scholastic philosophy prevalent in the 
time of Dante. 

What is known as the Scholastic Philosophy may 
be considered to have flourished from Scotus Krigena 
ID the IXth century to William of Occam at the end 
o( the XlVth century. Its chief activity ranged from 
the \lth century onward, and it reached the climax 
of de\-elopmenl with Thomasi Aquinas and Duns 
Scotufi towards the end of the Xlllth and beginning 
of ibe XlVih centimes. The term d^^cior ickotoiiuMs 

•iwrAi- Compare Ctaiv. iii, c«p. 5, II- iq4-igr) ; " Siccomc oroai. 
Mf qiKlloclK iletlo £, puotc vederechihanobik tngesno, ol qu*le 
t Who ud pocD di btica laKiare." 


Rtadings on the Purgahrio. Canto XVII. 

was originally applied to any teacher in the schools 
attached to mediaeval ecclusia^lical foundations, but 
came to mean specially one who occupied himself with 
dialectics, and the theological and philosophical 
questions arising therefrom. BrieBy stated, scholas- 
ticism is the application of Aristotelian logic to the 
doctrines of the Church. Duns Scotus placed less 
reliance upon the power of reason than did Thomas 
Aquinas l"lie followers of the one were known as 
Scotists and the other as Thomists. The yreat work 
of Thomas Aquinas, Summa Theohgiat, WTittcn about 
127^, is an encyclopedic synopsis of all the theo- 
logical and philosophical science of the age, arranged 
in logtcai forms. It was deeply studied by Dante. 


CAnto X^TII. Readings oh Ike Purgaiorio. 




I>i the last Canto Pantc showed how all sins have 
thctr origin in some kind of I^ovc. In this Canto he 
describes the purgation of Accidie or Spiritual Sloth, 
which comes from some rcmissneas in Love for the only 
True Good. 

Benv-enuto divides the Canto into five parts. 

In the Fini Division, from ver. i to ver. 39, Virgil, 
at Dante's request, continues his profound disquisition, 
and gives a definition of Love. 

/b tJu StcotiJ Division, from ver. 40 to ver. 75, Vii^l 
dears up a doubt which has arisen in Dante's mind in 
consequence of the deAnilion. 

/n ifu Thirtt Division, from ver. 76 to ver. 105, the 
penalty of the Slothful is described, after that Dante 
has gi\-en an indication as to the time of day. 

/• Uu Fourth Divisioa, from ver. 106 to ver. izg, 
Danic relates his conversation with the Abbot of St. 
JEeno at Verona. 

In the Fifth Diviston, from ver. 130 to ver. 145, V^irgil, 
by way of teaching Dante how Accidie is to be avoided. 
ifaowB him some of its unfortunate cfTcctii. 


Readings on the Purgalario. Canio xviit. 

Division 1. — Dante's mental questionings have been 
partly quieted, panly aroused. What is thai Love, the 
right or wrong direction of which is the cause, on the 
one hand of all holiness, on the other of all evil ? He 
still has some doubts on tlie subject, and lcavc!> it to 
be inferred that he has reasoned within himself as to 
whether enouf;h has been said on what the Scholiasts 
termed the " Matter of Love," and has come to the 
conclusion that there has not. He adds that Virgil 
restores his confidence by telling him, in words which 
he docs not quote, that he need not be afraid to speak 
out the doubts that he feels. 

Ponta avea fine al wo Titf;ionanieiito 

L' alto Dottorc, «d atlento (;uur<lava 
NclU mia vista* s' io parca contcnto : 

EH io, cui nuova setc ancor frugava, 

Di fuor lai:c\'a, c dcntro dicca : — " Forac 5 

Lo troppo dotnandaf, ch' io fo, rIi grava." + 

Ma quel padre vcracc, che a' ucconc ] 
Dc) timido volcr che non »' apriva, 
I'arlando, di parUcc (irttir mi porac 

* SiU^i mid vista.' ScarlRzzint prefers interpreting ihia, "into 
my cyc»," and quolca Cfw. iii, 8, 11. 77-90: '• L' Anima . . . 
dimoitraai iicKli occhi tanto manifestai che conoKer si pu& la aua 
prcicnic passionc, chi bene la mira. Onde concioniacoaach^ sci 
pjiuiinni tiano proprie dell' Anima umana . . . di nulla dt 
qucHlc puotc I' Animn ciwfrc paHMoniils, che alia fincMra dcgti 
occhi non vc|^a U Bctiibiunxu, se pcrKrandc virtu (ton Mchiude.** 

t gligravu : Compare in/, iii. 79*81 :~ 

"Allor con gli occhi vcrguj^nosi c baasi, 

Temcndo on 'I mio Hir rIi fusw gravt, 
Infino al flume ili purlar mi trassi." 

\ t*«ee»nt Del timido voter: Virgil had read Dnnte's thAUghtaaa 
io In/, xxiii, aj-jo; aa in Pur/:, xv, u7-ijq; jind an in i'ar. xvii, 
7>i3. where, durinK Dante's interview with his grcal-great-^and- 
father Cacciaguitla. Bt^Rlrice observing in Dantc'a face a wi»h to 
lt«k funhcr quextiana, and his hesitation to do ao, encourage* hin) 
to apeak out : — 

Canto IVliI. ReaJimgs on Ike Purgaitrrio. 


The eitaltcd Teacher hnd put tin end to his dis* 
GOttne, and was loolcin^ attentively into my face, (to 
•ee) if I appeared satistied : and I, whom a Trvsh 
thtnt waa already goading on, waa outwardly silent, 
and wtthin was saying: "Perchance the too much 
questioning' 1 make t» giving him annoyance." Hut 
thai true t'uther. who comprehended the ttinid wish 
that did not show itaelf, by speaking, cmlioldcned me 
to speak. 

He most hsve spoken woirds like tliuse of Beatrice 
(P*f. xvii, J-T3. Sec note.) Dante with renewed con- 
fldcQcc proceeds to utibui^len iiiinKclf of his tionbts, but, 
before doin^ so, be breakn out into an exclamation of 
aficction and f^atitnde to Virgil. Bcnvenuto says that 
he does him honour by a cumulative process. First he 
speaks of htin as alio Doitort, then padre if race, and now 
calls him Maestro. 

Dante explains to Virgil that he had been telling 
Ittm what Love did. and in what it %vas the cause cither 
of good or of evil, but he says : Thou hast nut yet told 
to begin with, what Love is I 

Ood'ie:— "Uaektro,* H mio vcder h' avviva 
SI nvl lua lame, ch' iii diiiccrna chiaro 
Quanlo ta tua rsKion porli o descriva ; 

Pct6 tt prego, dotce Padre earo, 

Che mi dimcMtri amore, a cui riduci 
Osni booao operarc e il wo contraro." f 



Per cli« mia donna : ' Manda fuor la faropa 
Del tt*ii ilivio,* mi disic. ' si ch' ella esca 
Scgnat* bene dctlu interna Mampa ; 
N«n perchi noKlra conoHccn ^a crc«CA 
I'cr Isu parlaic, ma pcti;hi 1' auM 
A dit ta ute, si Che 1' uom ti mcGca/" 
* y^atf : Sec kt»iin£t on ikt In/tru^, vol. u, p. 4L4, footnote t 
M JTMatfr*. 

f»r f*ft**ric. See N'annucci [Turrua dei Nomi, pp. 
fiotth MOMii fef wiati HI una, mit" etc., tn 


Readings on the PHTgatorio. Canto xvill. 

ceive them, or when we put into action the special power 
given to us, and so by them we have no special merit 
or demerit. 

Per6, lit oode vegna la intellelto 55 

Dcllc prime notizie, uorno non sape,* 
N4 dc" primi nppetibili 1 1* affetto, 
Che sono In voi, al come studio { in ape 
Di far lo mile : c quests prima voglia 
Merto di lade o di biamao non cnpc§ 60 

*sape, for M, ia the natural third ainptlar, preHcnl tcn»« of 
tdftrt. It ii frequently used by the Poets. (Nannucci, Anatisi 
Critka, p. 662.) 

t JVi i*' frimi oppttibiSi: Gioberli in hia commentary writes: 
" Noi ignoriaino dcn>dc nc v«ngano i' If prime nctitit dtW inUlletlo, 
. . . e'loi I principii delta nostra ragionc, c Ic tej;olc fondarncnialt 
deir inlclligcnza ; 3" I' affttto dc' primi appctibili, cioi quelle 
primitive inclinazioni, quegli appetiti primigenii da cut null' uomo 
va esentc : come 1' nmor del vers, dclla feliciti. del bcllo, del bcM, 
la curiosity In simpatia, c tutti i tnovimenti, }^\\ «fletti estctici, e 
moral), ctic formano Ih parte afTcltiva dell* aniffla, come U frimt 
notitit dcW inUiUtta, i;li atHiomi, le forme loeiclic, etc., nc coatiiui- 
Bcono la parte intcllcltiva. Dondc nc vcngatutto cid i da nai 

J i(»Jm> III <i/« Difar lo miU : In Giorg. iv, in th« Ant live linca, 
Virgil tipeuka of this instinct of the bees ; — 
*' Protinus acni mcllia coclcstia dona 
Exeqiiar. f^anc etiani, Maecenas, aapice partem. 
Admitanda tibi levium npcctacuU renim. 
Magnuni III usque ducen, totiusquc ordine gcniia 
More*, ct studia, ct pQpuloo, ct prtclia dicam." 

g Merfo Jt tode o di biasmo non cttpe : Giobcrti goea on to 
Bay: "QQesla facoltd primitiva c que«tc dispoKirioni aono fuori 
del libero arbitrio, e sgorcano dal seno della nostra nalara seiiM 
opera della nostra volont&; ondc non producono mcrto di toJ*, 
t) di biMtrw, Qioi non Honu impuiabili. Actiocchi poi a queata 
voglia non libcnt, mji naturale, cioi a queslu complcaao di nam* 
rail attiludini e trnctenjfe, vengan dietro e ai accompagnino (tt 
rauoglia) ciuckIi appctiti, que' de>ii, che come liberi panno eaaerv 
buoni, o rei, la S'utura ha po«tu nell' Uomo una Virt& conai- 
gUalricc chc dee Uncr la litghi dell' avienso, e del dtssenso, cio4 
rcicolarli ; la qiul Virl£i i la Ka^onc ; innaia ncl scnio dclto 
di sopia, poiCM etla fa parte ili quelle prune notizic, la cui 
origino a' ignora, ma di cui ccrlo ai mi che non hanno naKl- 
mento dai aenai. Pcrci6, posio per una parte il libcro atbitrio, 

Cmto xviiL RtMdin^s tm the PurgaUirio. 83 

And ftOw man knows not whence comes hia under- 
•tsfldinf* of the primal conceptions, nor the bent of 
the firai appetites, which arc in you, juai asihcrc 
i* in the bee the instinct to msike honey ; and this 
primal desire is not in itself capable of praise or cen- 

Ttte next three lines are exceedingly obscure, and 
have given rise lo much controversy. I follow the 
interpretation of Lombardi, ridiculed by BiagiolJ in 
his usual ungracious vein, but supported by Gtobertt, 
ScsrtBZ2im, Trissinn, Tommasco, PhitaUthcs, Witte, 
aad Blanc. 

Or, perchi ■ quc*tft ogni altra at raccoglia, 

CInnata v' i la virtil* chc conxtglia, 
B dcir asaeniMi il«' tcn«r la snglia. 

Kow in order that to this (first will) every other may 
be iCBlbered (i^. harmonized), there is tnnntc in you 
th« bcully which counsels \i^. Kcason), and ouj^ht 
to hold the threshold of iisscot. 

Virpl goes on to explain that Reason is the regulating 
principle from which come our merits and demerits. 

<^Ht' i il prineipio,t 1^ onJc ni ptglia 

Kaeion <Ji ntiL-ritarc in voi, «ceonilo 65 

Chc buoni c rci aisffri Mcogiie c viglja.{ 

tfcrT altn la ragioni! c on iijglia trice, si £ c apace d' icnputaiione; 
tcli amort che tjbera.menie s' accolKAno Mino imputAbili, perchfr 
l^ba in am lumc per conoscere la bonti. o la tnalina, a libcrti 
fa ^xettarli. a ngcttarti." 
*tvM; Scana/jini asys that virhi must be tmdcnitood here 

tOMir . 

}Q»tif i ti priaetpio : "Judiuium medium est apprchcnHwnis 
d apfwtitUB; (um primn rcH apprehcndilur, deinde apprchcnUL 
kana *cl mala Judicatur, ct ultimn judicanii proacquitur luve 
bc>t-' t^ Mi-ii.iti.MM. i, cap. xii, 11. 17>JI.) bcc also Ctmi'. iv, 9. 
1 nfltA: Ser Klanc (I'm. Dant.): "viglian, prupnamcnle 
^^Min ll grano dopa ballulo (ora, vugliare). In Purg. iviii, 6^ 
^^UpMkia U4thfn, diitiifgutrr" Kcnvcnulu writes 1 "v«rbum 
VcMMonui purigaotium bumcntum in area." 

^MM^ 1 I 


Rtadingi on the Purgatorio. Canto XVlll. 

This is the source from which emanate the grounds 
of your deserts, according ns they gather in or winnow 
out ^oocl and bacl Iovck. 

Aristotle and Pl»tu, as well as othei- philosophers, the 
wisest of men, by their investigations, arrived at the 
discernment of the real nature of things. They re- 
cognized the Freedom of the Will, and hence gave to 
the world those moral doctrines, by which men arc to 
exercise government over their own selves. 

Color the raKionando^nmlaro al (ondo, 

ti' ttccorscr cl' vstu innaiu libertaie, 

Ptrif moraliti t lasciaro al monda 
Ondc pognain I chc di ncb«»itiiie 70 

Surgn OK"' amor che dentro a voi «' accende, 

Di ritcncrlo i 111 voi ta pol»lAlc 

They wlio in ar^ment went to the root of the matter, 
took note of Ibis innate freedom, and therefore be* 
queathed moral philosophy to the world. Let ua 
assume then that every Love which is kindled in you 

* Colof flit ragionando, etc. The philoKophers., who by thnr 
investigations, nttnincd ihc hidden truthti of nitlurc. 

t B y uioraiil^ undcislnnd moiul philosophy or IZthictt, which 
would have been of no avail without the principle of freedom of 
(he will, fienveriuti) says the philosophers placed a check on 
libcrtv to prcvtnt it6 declining to evil. 

( Onilt pfgtam (ht di nte^iiitaU Surga ogni amor eh* Jeuirv 
a voi «' atituJt: Ciiobctti thu» concludcn his vcrj' important 
diacoaaioii uf the whole pasaaxe: " Pogniamo pure, chc U vottn 
apprentiva riccvendo I' imagine di tin obictio estemo u Henta 
neceaaariamcate ninsu dalle sue nuturali inclinaziani ad amon 
o awenione verso di chhi : sin c[ui non vi ha cccio nulla dl 
libera, c chc f)erl*nlo pos&a esscre imputato. Mo MCvome i-oi 
avctc lurre di mponc per diKuminaie Ic quality mondi dcgli 
oKsetti a cui vi Mintitc inclinato, od awerso ; siccome voi avete 
lifacftA di far questa di^amina, c, fntlala, di aMrcntirc, a di di>- 
bcntifc ai moti primi dclla natura : «! fa lutigo a imputaiionc 
riipctlo u qucitlo voMro A»«enso, o dlKento ; c nc nnscc per 
Cii> una scrtc di amori buoni. o Tci, ma libcri scinprc, pcrchfc 
dair etcTLiiio accompafinall del vottta libero nrliilrio, i quali per 
tanlo sono dcfini di lodt o di biasimo, c ntcrilcvolt di prcmiO) 
o di caatipi." 


i Canto JEVin. Readings on Ou Furgatorio. 85 

ante* of necessity, yet in you there cxiaU Lh« power 
to reatrain it. 

"Now mark here, reader." says Benvcnuto, " that if 

[this reasoning be well considered, it ought to convince 

tttxy one. For what medical man would agree that 

it \% no use curing a sick person ? Hut that '•rotild be 

tme, if i:vcr>thiny happened by necessity. What 

astrologer would be willing for his art to be con- 

dtained, when he maintains that one can avert com- 

tne misforlunes, if they be foretold by his hire? What 

jidge would not be indignant, were he told that he 

puni^es evildoers unjustly? Wha.1 mei-chant would 

Dot Sly that negligence is very prejudicial to trade? 

What mac man does not prove that much wisdom 

ivu/u concilia) is necessary for the world ? M'hat 

babofldman does not know that agriculture is profit- 

aUe (or fertilising crops? Ijut all men trj' to make 

ue. throwing the responsibility for all their vices 

sins upon Heaven, upon destiny, upon fortune, 

Dg like the philosopher, CIcantes: — 

'Volentem fata ducunt, nolentem trahunt.*" 

Id conclusion, Virgil refers Dante to theology, and 

^ bricHy that he himself by his human knowledge 

« KKnce cannot rise to any more elevated inler- 

^■tion of the question, for he can only judge of 

me by effect; but Beatrice understands that the 

vUc virtue, the most excellent that there is in Man, 

■ Frw Will, for by it we deserve cither eternal tifc, 

tcnrlasting punishment. 

Ijt tM>bilc iirtii* HcAtrice intcnde t 

maHU wirft: Scart««j!ini cays thai Dante takctt virlH in 
WK of the Lalin cia, power. f«<:ully of ihc soul, and uses 
wrt iBhcn ipenkiriK of Kc«»on. Free Will, ihc (acuity of 
Another way, Rdopled by Oiobetti, of transimtine 

86 Readings on the Purgatorio. Canto xviii. 

Per lo libero arbtlTio, e pc^d guardB 

Che r ablit b mcntc, %' ft parliir t«n prcnde."* 75 

This noble facjlty, licairicc (Theology) understands 
as Free Will, and therefore look iKat thou bear it in 
mind, should she take to Kpcakin^ tothcc of iu" 

Diriaifin ill. — Pante now describes the penance of 
the Slothful, but, before doing so. he defines the exact 
position and appearance of the Moon. 

La luna, quasi a mcxza nolle tarda.t 
Facta Ic «t«llc a not parcr pi6 radc, 
Futia com' un sccchionct che tutto arda; 

this Mentence ic, '•Beatrice, Theology, callx Free Will I* uMlt 
iiVfil," jfid Scartaxani ciuntc* ll^is m an allcrnativr tranilalian, 
but noncofihe comncntuma or iransliiliuna si'^ms to take lli« 
slightnt heed of Per. It nppcars lo roe rhat inUndr fir h 
lifw arbHriQ is bcsl translated " undcrKtandu as Free Will." 
IiUtadean have the force of "tallx, proclai mK, styles." 

*i' d fariar Itu prtnJt ! Beatrice ib to Hpcak of Tree Will t« 
Dante in Par. v, 19-84 ; — 

" Lo ma^gior don che Die per sua 1arghc/<« 

FcSTic crcandn, cr] aLla sua bnnlatc 

Pill conforraato, e quel cb' ci piu appreiza, 
Pudclla volnntj) la libcrtate, 

I>i cbe tc CTfaturc intclligenti, 

E lultc e sole furo c son dotale.** 
And in Par. i, io;j a ir<i.. Beatrice tells Dante that the order 
Ood lias Kiven to Nature cauuenin ui.Ihefirtt impulses. 

f £.4 luittt, tfutui a m*i:<i nt-llt lnrJa : "cioc tardala ad altarii fin 
quaiti alia mcxjranottc : c cifi per tmvr queHiii 1> quinta riAttc del 
roiMerioiio viaj^^o, incurrinciato a luna plena. Ln luna chc dopo 
il nuo picno tarda rj);ri ticra quuai un 'ora a lcvar»i, di>vca qucsta 
quinia volia sofgerc eiica cinque ore dopo c.iduto 11 sole, clot 
(cHcndo equinoiio) appunia poco innanii alia meziartotte." 

I l-'itltm torn' un ificiii«nt : CoMa intcrprclH this: " Uicc come un 
secchionr, pcrchi la luna cssendo calsnir moitrava una dcllc sue 
parti rotonde e I' altra scema. eome un secchione di ram« che ha 
il fnntlo H Euiha di un cmiK(cri<>, e ha Kcma la parte ku per lore." 
The eaplaiiatiun of ibc Ollimo in bimilar: "'^ui niotttra I ora chc 
era, quando lo »opradelto ranponamcnio si fatca ; e dice, eh' erm 
circa a nic/za noitc in qucUo cmiapcrio ; c pcrchi nvcva paiiuto 
r oppoaijtone del Sole, era iMrema dalla parte occidcntale ; r parea 

Canto SVIU. Readings on the Purgaioria. S7 

E correa contra il ckl per quelle iliade* 

Che il aok iaAamrnu ullor ctic quel da Roma 80 

Tra i S&rdi c ■ Corti il vcde quando cAdc: 

The Mood, u it was belated towards midnig'ht, 
shaped tike a bucket tlui is all on 5re, was making 
the •tars ap)iear to us more scarce, and was following 
a countc contrary- lo the heavens along those paths 
which the Buo sets aflAnie when one at Komc sees it 
St its setung bctMcen Sardinia and Corsicn. 

On this particular pasuge. Dr. Moore (Tiitu Re/frenees, 
p. 101) saw; "The majority of Commentators have 
led <as it appears to nic quite ncvdlc&sly), that this 

isnaMcchia rli ramt icccnadi fuoco; loquale lunc ofcurava 
—he piccoliMumc stellf, Hcchi paivano pure quelle che notio 
iliHi magcior ni«gRiludin«, c petit appareann radc, cini una qua, 
e raltn U." Mr. Butler apity nbscivcs : -'iticiikiK in Ihc large 
hcanphcncal bucket [he should have added ot cnppcrj which 
■ttjr alill be »c«n in Italy. Looked at tomewhat oMiquely the 
nallinr <rf one of time tannn no bad compariruin for the {gibbous 
AOMb" I fini] the folkiwing in thai most useful work Fnrnlunrii} 
A snaMi airiHtmtt a famikUarti, ad akuni mcitieri, m twe doaustitlUt 
I sOn dt >w comuite : di Giacinto Carena, Torino, 184b, pt. i. p. 
aSi : " luakiom a«cic»ci(tvo di utthiii t di SiuJiio. Stcdtio, vaso 
cayq, per lo piu di ratne, il quale ha un mnnico di fcrro, curvo in 
MflUCMXbMi, e t;irevnle nelle due oppoatc arKcUir, ■ uko di al1i|;ncr 
r Minii Wi*iiT per lo piil di Icgno, a doj;hc, di fondo ordinaria* 
onRe pift attetlA chc la faoctia, nel riniunenle cone il mdiw, c 
M«v«ntr alio ktcitvo ma. 11 Vocabolario [dtlU Crtt^un] regiatra 
•ejawatarr.rnlc il renhU: e dice che qucsto i propriumente q«»el 
nau «" I ricco(;lic il lattc ncl mugricre." (Thiti i»con- 

Inanl 4rteN oi llatciti and llarbcri.) I need hardly 

|MHU QUI it-ui !■'! lenderinc Kuch a word, intended by Panic to 
eMl*«y tn )>i' rcaden a dclinite shape, whrther we interpret 
' dl-buckct or milk-|iail, vc muitt bear in mind (he 
itenmln at were in umc in Tu*cany. Iluli interpret* 
cif>c come Uflo cahUinnc di tamo,'* CaUaiom is Ihc 

U ID lingliah "the copper." Some read uluaiont. ij. a 

(u all in a bUre. but il i« a teadini; ihal ha« bti! tilllT authority. 
* ftr fmtiU Urodt : Scsrlaijini points out thai in Ihc jircccding 
MSOnKx Dante h«> ilcfcribed tlie sctuul motion u\ (he Moon; 
aad to ihii tcnieiice he kpcaks of the course it was followinKi 
vbch «nu that ot the resitins illumined by the Sun. 


Readingt on tht Purgaiorio. Canto xvi 


must refer to the actual hour of Moon-rfw. which would 
certainly be, according to the principle wc have been 
advocatinj^, about lo p.m., or perhaps 10.30., since the 
Moon 'k. already well up, and producing a sensible 
effect in quenching the lesser stars. . . . F'hilalethes ss)-* 
the Moon rose Etwa urn 10 Vhr, alsosfAow zicmlidi ^(gen 
MiUemacht. ... I do not think it at all certain thai 
Dante intends to speak of the hour of Moon-t-i's^ at all. 
. . . The eflfcct here indicated of the quenching of the 
lesser stars by the light of the gibbous or pitcher-shaped 
moon {secchiotic) as it is graphically described, would be 
much more striking if it were some little time above 
the horizon than if it were just rising. I thinlc it 
probable the whole passage is only a poetical and 
slightly elaborate way of saying the hour was approac 
ing midnight, described, as usual, by some strikir 
visible aspect of the fact. It is not half so elaborate 
artilicial a way of describing a simple fact or phen< 
mcnon as many other passages that might be cited. II 
is surely quite a natural (poetical) description of sue 
an hour (it being allowed that the Moon was up, asi 
fact) to translate: 'And now the Moon, as it were 
tovvai'da midnight late, shaped like a pitcher all afii 
was making the stars appear lo us more rare.'" 

On line 79. Dr. Moore (of>. eit. p. 104) add*: "The 
words which follow in ver. 79. describe evidently tl 
backing of the Moon through the .signs from west toj 
east (as in Par. ix, 85, contra it sole, and again, in ParJ^ 
vi, 2. the removal by Constantine of the scat of Empii 
from Kume to Constantinople is described as cvnlra 
corso dd cUl). This causes the daily retardation tc 
which wc have so often referred, and more particularly' 
he says she was in that path of the ifodiac which is 

Canto XVlll, Rtaiingt <nt the Purgatorio. 


maminatcd by the Sun, when the people of Korne see 
bim vetting betwi-ccn Sardinia and Corsica. This is 
slated by Mr. Butler, no doubt correctly, to be towards 
the end of Sovcmbcr, when the Sun sets west by south. 
If so, the Sun would then be in Sai^ittarius, and that is 
pneciecly where the Moon's Right Ascension would 
briBf her on this night, as is pointed out by Delia Valle. 
Dmie's indication of the Sun's position here, as seen 
firom Roine, n curious. These islands bein^ invisible 
from Rome, the Sun can only be said lo be seen sctlinf; 
between them, from a knowledge of their position on the 
map, compared with the observed direction of the Sun. 
(Compare statement of Moon netting beneath Seville, 
in /li/. XX, 126.) In this sense only k3lX\ it be true that (as 
tome of the old Commentators say) Dante observed 
thn himwlf when at Rome; and in this sense it is very 
likely indeed to have been true, since he was actually 
at Rome at the moment of the dtfiaslrous entry of 
Charles of Valois into Florence on November isl. 1301, 
aad for some time afterwards, ix. at the veiy time of 
year here described." 

Benvenoto thinks this happened in the middle of 
October about midnight, and when the Sun was in 

Dante is now feeling relieved from the burden of 
iwabu which was oppressing him. The genitu toci 
•nans to have somewhat affected him with Accidie, 
lai be \% about to give himsell a little ease and repose, 
w(wn lie is suddenly roused by a band of penitents, who 
to poise theniKlves from Sloth are running' so rapidly, 
tkat the}- have already gone completely round the 
Comkc and are coming up behind the Poets. 


Readings oh the Purgatorio. Canto XVlir. 

B qu«ir ombra gcnlil, per cut u noma 
Pictola* pifi chc villa Mantovana, 
Del mio Cftrcar dcposta avea lii soma ; 

Perch' id, chc la raKione apcrta e piana 
Sopm le mie qucstJoni avca ricolta. 
Stava com' uom chc sonnolcnto vana. 

Ma qucHta ionnol«n^a mi fu tolla 
Subitanicnlc da Kcnlc.t the tiopo 
Le nosire «pa!le a noi era gii vAlta. 



*Pieiola : Thi« in a. «inatl village not very far from Manhut. of 
which ihc ancient name was Andes, and where tradilion had il that 
Virgil wan born. "Jc suin nWt voir Ic (ria douteux berceau de 
Vireilc, Pictala. parcc que Danle I'a nommf dan& scs \'cr3 1 mala 
c'itait aflTnire de cmistience, vaiHt tout. Pour frtre senuhle ft 
t'cfTct dcs licuv tlluttrii, jc veux autre choic que Icur nora. La 
moinilrc trace d'un Krand hominc m'£mcut, mniK encore faol-il que 
ccltc trace cxjstcj ]c nc tMur^iti m'cnthousiaiinicr en presence 
d'un villaKc parfaitement scmWahlc 1 vn autre, parccquc certains 
antiquaires affirment que dans ce village est ni Vir^ile. L'aspcct 
du payi> ni'inl£reise. car je le rclrouvc danx la po^MC dcH Bucottqutt, 
maitt jc n'>' rctrouvc pa« les rues el \<» maisons modcrnca de 
l^etola. A PIctola rien ne p»Hc dc Virtue qu'une hyp»(hisc 
scientitiqac, cl il tn'cst impouibic dc m'nttcndrJr sur one 
hypath^He." Ampere {Voyage DanUtqiu, p. jig). Or. Moore 
(Texluiil CnlUisit, pp. J91, jga), after approving; ihc readmit 
adopted aliovc, sivcs the numerouB variants, the principal of which 
arCi Pisloia piA ch< nulla; Pittesa fiH th* nitlta ; Corttit piit tkf 
nulla ; but he sa^a nearly all the old Commentators adopt and 
explain PiiloUt, without any allusion to any other reading. 

r gtnU: On the penalty of the Slothful »ce Pcrei (I SttU 
Ctrchi, op, iSo, iSi): '■ Un correre senra po»n i lormento e itw 
ajcmc oolcc/^a a coloro che in queUa viia furono accidioai. 
Poaciachi tanti Riorni han pcrdtitn, riitando in disamur ncKhit* 
loso, e peoearonn contro quel prccctto divino. che dice vi^ilalf. ora, 
perredimcrc il tc-mpa, non ristanno ncmmcn nclla nottc: c nella 
nottc il Porta li %c<lc »ollccili »i. chc ci ricordnni) il Kcn-o cvan* 
jEiiticEi, chc prccinto i lombi e con in marvo I' acccsa facella, move 
incontro al padrone, a Ic saggie vcrgini che colic lampadc ardcnti 
81 funnu incontro alio Spouo. Nun currono diviai e soli, nia 
raccolti c Kirciti in erandc schtcr* : ccrtamenic pet accendcrsi 
viemmeKlio con sania einula^tone, e per aminontrci chc inexzo 
vatidinstmu a sni);hittii»i i il tcncrsi in compagnia co' buoni e 
fcrvcnli. Corrono scmprc in |iro, scmptc attorno al montc : ondc 
il correre non sembra aver mai per loco gn pnncipiooun lemine; 

Canto xviTf. Readings on the Purgatori&. 




Aod ih«t ooble shade (Vii^il), on whose account 
Ptctola ia more rrnoivncd than (even) ihe city of 
Mantua, had dtshunlcncd himself of the load with 
wbkh I had charjjcd liiin {i.e. had removed the 
doabts in my mind which I had cunhik-d to him) : 
whereupon I. who had received hi« elucidation ex- 
plicit and clear upon my (]uc»linns, rcm^iincd as one 
who being drowsy rambles. But this drowsincHK was 
suddenly taken Irotn me h^' a multitude who hsd 
already come round in us behind our backs. 

The drowsiness reminds us of Canio ix, 11; and 
xn-ii, 93, and may be connected with the sin of accidia 
from which the pili^rim Is now to be purified; perhaps 
with the wearitiess of the natural man after the icnuon 
of the bniin occupied with profound mysteries. 

The penalty of the ftlothtul is unccasinK activity and 
dnpUy of ener]^ in running, talking, meditating and 
whatever elM is contrary to their mortal natures. 

Benrenula says the slothful man sins in a threefold 
way. fd) In hiii heart : by not thinking of God. his own 
aod h- ibour's salvation, and not sorrowing for his 

«a». / Viilh his lipii: by not praising God, and 
pnyini; Id Him, not instructing his neighbour by ex- 
bortatioD, reproof, and such like, (c) In his actions: by 
rwrt giving alms, rrot going to church, and so on. 

Uante illustrates the penalty of the Slothful by a 
«mile taken from the wild rites observed by the votaries 
of Bacchus. 

E qojUc tmmcna gil vtde ed Attpa* 

■Mb dacan enl o ajtli accidimi, che nan Mumo mailrovar princlpio 
df opcrs, V qwuido pure U trnvatio, nnn aan mat rccarla kiio ler- 

* ftmtma . . . ol Ai*f«: Umenu>i tnd AM>t>u» «trrc tivr.n ■» 
ffa^'TfTi, on vttcMc banks t^c ThctKins ran *t night with liKHtcd 
tsfcbc* to invoke tht aid of tUtchuti— to eivc llicm rain (or ihcir 
!■■/■ id« — «fatch i« wh4t OmnU mean* by " Pir tht ^vtuer ttopo." 
n^ campariMin ctimn bom Sutius (Tb^. ix. 434 it tr).). 


Readings on the PurgaUmo. Canto xv'lii. 

Lungo di *i A\ nottc furia e caks, 
Pur chc i Tcban di Dbcco ave&ser uopo ; 
Cotal per quel giroii sua paKW) falcai,* 

m^w* _ 'I 

*■ tuo fiasso /aUti : The mcunmg of this I Uke to be, the move- 
ment of one who directs hisi way in the form of a Mmicitclc, lik« 
the sweeping horiioalal Action that a icapcr givc» to a sickle, ur a 
mower tn a scythe. For thi« intcrpretatiim I hare (he ;iulhoril}' 
of Landino, Bull, Ccuri, Scartaziini, Camerini, Blanc. Fraticelli. 
Giuliani and rolclto. .Some, among others Bcnvcnuto and I^m- 
btirdi, simply interpret il in ihc sen»e cf "to advance;" 01 hcrik lake 
it to cxpTCS» the Mii:klG-9>)iapc into which a. hotw bcndn hm (mc-kg. 
But the legitimate use of a sickle is horizontal, not perpendicular, 
and Dante i« speaking of the spirits of the Slothful runninK at 
Bfccd round the Cornice, and possibly, in their rapid course, bend- 
ini; their bodies inwurdu towardii the mountain. Landino sa}'s : 
"suo pasM fak»; suo paaao pirga. ImpcrDCchc non uscivan del 
girone : ma eirando intorno, del conlinuo picgavanu « lotceana il 
eammino. Patcan tigrifia {•ugort : diet lone denvata dallafalee: 
la quale i pic|;ata e curva. '— Buti ; /aUn. cioi piega," — Ceiiaii : 
" f-'ttltart i piegare a. modo di (alee ; ed i pteso da cavalli, ehe a 
corrcic ai ammacstrano in un torno fare iiiugai in a cirtk) ; come 
moxim Danlc nclla parola sotto, caoaUa, che compic cua meia* 
(nra. Corrcndo dunque il cavallo iaforiatamcnte a tondo. come 
sasia di frombotn, pcrritirare Icr slancio, delta for/acenlrifoga chc 
gli di il correrc ») foric in circolo, ed cgh liene il corpo pic- 
gato vcrao il cciilro, >icchi alB fuoi di bilico : c qticstu i lorsc 
propriamentc falcAfc il paE»0. '^Scarla/iini and Camcrini quote 
the above extract*, and approve of them.— Blanc (Foe. Daitl.): 
''dirigcrc il suo camniino procedendo in forcna di scfntccrchio, 
pic|;ando." — Praticclli is very precise: " t-'ukan il f^tM, si|pii< 
net mman c Icndo o in giro U ptnao, lolta la similitudinc dalla fa)cC| 
ch' & falta a semicerchio. e che:, adoperandoKi, egualruente a 
nemicerchio hi volge." — Poletto: " i-'aXcdr^, dal sosl. /alx. fa 
chiara 1' idea d' un movimento circolare, ^i»ta chc era qa 
gironc.'' — Poletto adds that this interpretation is greatly su| 
ported by the U6C oiarxMare by Dante in fu'ff. xjv, 1 :— 

" Chi i costui che il nostro moiite cerchia f " 
Among nanuscnpt commentH of Giuliani, in books left 
him to M^r. To I citn, the latter notices: " Folia, ttrxliia, come 
muovc laralGc(PM>]f.xiv,iy'— andagain ; " PaUiurt, Purg. xwiii, 1^ 
V.' mt faccva falciarc la via (picliar la via con te gambc avvolte^ 
euisail'uomcuisoflnDovmo piega): 'Guardacomcfalciar inte 
aire da un montagnolo piitoicMc rispclto a un suo compaeiiano, 
che figliav* In via come fake il grano ; la ccrchiava, podsto 
com' era tn qua c in lik dalla fori* del vino. In Coriona usano 1> 
stcsaa voce, &alvoch£ in luQgo di fakiart dicono ftUian, mutando 
■I loltto la a in i. " 

^antOXVTII. Ratiiiti^ on ttu Pttrgatorio. 


Pet quel cfa' \o vidi, dt color vencndo 
Citi buon volcrc c giuslo amor cumlca. 



'And M of old Ismenus and Asopus saw the rush and 
thion^fn^ »t flight along their bianks, in (he event of 
th« 'rticbans bcin}; in need of Bacchus, so did these 
nloag that cornice cur\'c their steps running round 
and round il to far as (in the gloaming), I could see 
oEthoxe advancing, who by Rood will and righteous 
Lcvc irc ridden. 

Beovcnuto draw& a moral from this simile. He says if 
the Tlicbans were in the habit of arising at night to 
Atal tbe praises of the heathen Bacchus, who was the 
pi of wine and triumph, how much more aught not 
Cfaiiniaiis to arise and hasten to sing the praises of the 
Ow true Grod. 

Having dc&cribed the tumultuous rush of the spirits, 
Uante now speaks of the loud cries they arc uttering. 
Two of them run on before the rest, proclaiming ex- 
■aplcsof zeal and energy.* und the main body, as they 
Ufew, re-echo the shout, with alt the impetuosity of a 

*fT. loo-ios- The examples arc, as^uaual, drawn both from 
noed and prohrw biatniy. As before, the hrsi reference b to 
u iacidcnl in the life of the Blessed Virgin. Si, Lute i. 39: 
*Aad Utrf arotc in ihoie ditys, and went into (he hill country 
*<t)i luttc." rbc factt about Cwsar arc rcUtcd by l.ucan 
iTiiTMiid, bonks lii und ir). Cxtiar who was on his way to sub- 
be tkrda, now Lcrida in Spain, besieged HarscilleB. Icavinji; tliere 
t ptn of hw trtny under Urutui to complete tbe work. Ben- 
<aalo ksjn : No ciannplc could be m»rc appropriate, for no man 
^t «sa ever a greater enemy to sloth (ban Juliua Cxsar — not 
•alf fair bis wonderful endurance, but also Inr the incredible 
,r of hi> marches. D«an Plumptte thinks thai, in ver. 105, 
'wcai* to teach the scholastic doctrine of " Grace of Con- 
i.t. that ttic effvTtii of men (o do good are e9ec(i\-e in 
itbcm rDcc( to receive grace for doing u. The doctrine i» 
I by the Churi.h ul li nginnd in Article xiii, which teaches 
ilarecogBiae God's grace even in those eSoila. 

u Reaitittf^s mt the Purgaiorio. Canto xvill. 

TokIo Fur copra not, pcrch^ carrcndo 
Si moves tutla quclla turba magns ; 
E due dinanJii gridavan piangcndo; 
— " Mnria cohk con Trctta alia tnonUgna ; " — I 

E,— " Ccsarc. per soegiogdrc [krda, 
Punsc Marsilia, c poi corse in IspagnK.* — 
— " Katto, ratio, che i) tempo non »i perdft 

Per pDCD amor," — gridavan glj allri appressc ; 
— ^"ChJ studio di ben far graxU rinvcrda." — i 

Soon were they upon us, far the whole of that great 
multitude were moving up at a run ; and two in front 
ciicd out, weeping : " Mary ran in haste unto the 
hill-country": and "Ciesar to subdue licrda, darted 
his sting into MarKillcit, and then hiiMtcned into 
Spain." "HHstc, ha»te ! ao as not to waate time 
through lack of Love," cried out (til thone (that came) 
after; "that zeal of doing right may cause grace to 
bud a^ain." 

Division IV. — Virgil be^s the new comers to point out 
the opening of the stairway to the next Cornice, and oa( 
of the spiriu cuitiplies. 

— " O gente, in cui fervore acnia adeii»o 

Ricompic for&c negligent c indugio, 
Da vfti per tcpidczza in ben far incsso. 

QucMi che vivc (c ccrio io non vi bugiaj* 

Vuflfc andar su. purcht il not nc ntuca ; lU 

Pcr6 nc ditc ov' i prce&o il pcrtugio." — 

Parole furoti qucntc dct mio Due* : 

Ed un di qucgli spjrti dime :— ^ Vleni 
Dirciro a n»i, e trovcrai la buca. 

Noi siam di vui;]ia a movcrci li picnii 

* MOW vi bMgio : VirKil anurea the «|Mritt that Danle really 
ativc. Bdj ■ 1 — -J :- — ■..•..i:._ ...., _ 

to luntir*. 

« vi bugio : VirKil anurea the «|Mritt that Danle really IP 
Bmgtat it) a word used in early Italian, and ia equivalent 
fir*. It Hurvivca in Am; ij, " a lie." 

Hrto xviii. Readings on the Purgatorio. q$ 

Che Hilar non potcm ; * pcrd pcrdona, 
Sc villania nostra |;iu»ti/iat ticnt. 

"O sptriM) IB whom the prexent fervid 2cal [>erd)itnce 

ndecins ncgkct and procrastination si\own by you in 

fsJceivuiiliKBS to da Rood, thin mAn who is alive 

(Duitc) — and indeed I lie not unto yoU' — wishes to go 

up «o soon as the Sun shines forth again upon us; 

pny therefore tcll u» where the passage is nearest." 

&uch were the words of my (^uidc, and one of those 

iptrils said : " Come clou after us and thou wilt find 

the opening. We ere so full of desire to keep our- 

kIws in movement, that we cannot rrat ; pray excuse 

us then, if thou shouldst hold as want of courtesy 

tlut which IK our obligation, 

Tk answer had come from the Veronese Abbot of 
Zeao, and we may note, IJenvenuto tells us, that his 
wfcele demeanour shows how actively he is purifying* 
kiiaelf from Accidie. He is running fast, without 
U> looK robe, he does not delay his rapid courae to 
•nww, he does not involve his speech with a tedious 
tXetHam, but answers briefly, sharply, and to the 
fomt; and then goes on to excuse himself to Dante 
fDTOol stopping, lest the (alter should think his haste 

*fdtm : Compare tnf. ix, 31-35 :— 

"QocMa paludc chc il iran puizo apim, 
Cinge d' intorno la ciltA dolcDtc. 
U' non potcmo cntrore amai scnx' irs." 
RiMiKLi \An*liti CritKat. p. bjj) sB/t thftt fvUnto was a perfectly 
m>i*[ tTrmmauim, but which in moilem titnci would be uaed but 
wn rurijr cren by poets. 

^oOni gtMilisui: Searlaiuini points nut that we may well 
IBktr, fron L tiS, that (his tipir it Rcv«r pauM'd, but cuntinucd 
I* na >• be Kpoltc to Dante. Therefore he entreats Dante 
*"l«(4oo him if hit duty, and that of hib comrades, which 
NitU then to haateii on, rni^ht aceni to Uaiiic as ■ want of 

IB iu i cuMl o wishes an to take note that Dante has depicted 
lUa nhaal of the Abbot to stop and talk, with expren purpose ; 


R<(tding% on the Purgahrio. Canto xvtii. 

After these few words of apology for his haste, the 

spirit continues: — 

lo Tui Abate in son Zcno * ft Verona. 

Sotto lo imperio del buon + BsrbarftRsa, 

Di cui dolcntc \ ant;i>r Milan rai;ion>. i 

I was Abbot of San Zzno at Verona, when the good 
Barbaroasa was Emperor, of whom Milan stilt speaks 
with sorrow. 

This speaker, of a life blamdesK except for AccidU 
which he is purifying in this Cornice, was former 

for he remarks how often one sees people, when engaged 
fioncKt UH«ful buftincHs, slop on tbcir way to gossip so tnat th( 
may plea»o men. Tbai hard-working man, Calo the Cent 
remarked that an account mu&t be rendered lo Uod for all 
hours of ca^c. not only of our action* during (hat time, but cv 
of our words ; and In another place Cato wrote : Human 111 
re*ewbIf-» a swnrrf, or piece «l iron : whith if it be but lill 
u»ed, IS ton^uincd bj- rual ; but, if constanily used, it bccoi: 
more bright and fhinint;. 

*iir» Xeno: Zcno vrai the eighth bishop of Verona, in a.d. it 
durinK the papacy of iJinnykiut. He was n man of deep sanctit 
learning, and eloquence. " Three cburclies are named after _ 
2cnoat Verona: one on I he hill, another hf the Adige. but thin ii 
only a small oratory or chapel, and 1 think (tay& Bcnvcnuti>;L, thit 
it i« thin San Zcno nf which St. Grcjcor>- writes in the DiabigMS, 
that on one occasion the Adjgc had inundated Verona, but did 
not enter the vrindnws of the Church of San Zeno. The third 
church i» abotil a jnvclin cast from the river, and there i» no 
taircT church that 1 have seen in all Verona. And it i* to this 
church in particular that Danic alludes, because it has monks ; 
be»ide« which (hit At>bo4 who i» now spealting, waa Abbot 

tfriioit: Scartazzini strongly condemns the tnodem commen- 
tator^ amonK whom i» Giobcitl. who contend that Dante called 
the Emperor jcco'' in an ironical sense. He remarks that all the 
early Cnmmcniaton underttnnd it in its literal lenae.andVcntun 
was the firnt to »ugKe»t the contrary. Benvenulo »aya; Dante 
call» Frederick good, because he was brave, virtuous, cner);clic, 
a most successful general, and of a very handsome person, and 
called Barbaroata from the colour of his beard. 

^dolmU: During the sack of Uilan 82.000 perBons were scat- 
tered abroad, and the ruin* remained deserted for five j-cara. 

Canto xvill. RcaJu^ on the Purgatoria 


Abbot of the Monaster)' of San Zcno at Verona, and had 
niied it mdmirably. His name remains unknown. 

B«nvenuto remarks: "For the belter understanding 
of the text, one must know that (his spirit says that 
he Ih-cd in the time ol the Emperor Frederick I 
(Barharos&a of Suabia), who reigned 37 years. Fre- 
derick was at first a friend of the Church, but later 
OD had a quarrel with Pope Alexander III, who ex- 
cooiinanicaicd him. About that time he had many 
war» in Italy wilh the Lombard allies of the Pope. 
He conquered them all, destroyed Spolcto and Tortona, 
Ltdia tranitnutai-it : he built Crema. and Cremona was 
prenuplohim; he as&aulled and took Milan in [163, 
ptttled down its walls, burnt it, ploughed it up, and 
tamvi the site with salt. He slaughtered the Romans 
bonibly. Pope Alexander, fearinf^ his power, took 
rda^ at Venice, where he was received with great 
fivtruKc By his bvour the Milanese rebuilt their city 
is t(6S. 

" The leader of the Venetian Heet in a naval action, 
moil priscmcr Henry, the Emperor's son, and brought 
bim to Venice Frederick Barbaros»a, Bccing his for- 
tBDE wa« de&erting him, and that Fope Alexander was 
bctne Mrengihened by the support of Louis Vtl, King of 
Foacc Henry II of England, and William, the excel- 
leot Kin|[ of Sicily, and the allied Venetians and Lom- 
hardi^ asked for peace and pardon by ambassadors, and 
came to Venice and fell on his knees before the Pope. 
Pope Alexander placed his foot on the Emperor's neck, 
Wfinti : ' Thou shalt go upon the serpent and basilisk, 
and tread the lion and dragon under thy feet.* The 
Enperor said. * I kneel to Peter; not to you.' And the 
hfMe Aiuwcrcd, ' I am the Vicar of Peter.' Frederick 

yo Heatiiftf^ on W»# ittrf^atorio. Csnto :rvill. 

went afterwards to the Holy Land on a crusade in iigo. 
and was drowned wliile bathing in a river near Antioch." 
The spirit of the Abbot now complains of thi; pre- 
sent Abbot Giuseppe, a bastard son of Alberto della 
Scala. who being deformed, and of less honourable 
origin than his half-brothers fiartolonimco, Alboinoi 
and the famous Can Grande, DU|;ht to have been dis- 
qualified for sa great a distinction as Abbot of San 
Zcno. His character moreover ought to have been 
an insuperable bar to his appointment, but bis father 
Alberto, in his old age, forced him upon the unwilling 
inmates of the monastery. 

E talc hn gA V un pii <lenlio la foiwa,* 

Che toBto piangcrl ^uel inonantcro, 

E trislo fia d' aveme avuto posKa : 
Perchi sdo figtio, mat del corpo intero,f 

E dclla mcntc pcgj^ia, c chc mal nacque, 115 

Ha pOAto in loco di *ua pa*lor vero.'' — 

And there is one (Alberto della Scala) who already 
has got one foot in the grave, who soon shall weep 
for that Monastery, and will lament that he evei held 
the Hwsy over it ; becauae, in place of iti true Pustor, 

* laU ka gii r un pit dcniro ta Joua. Dante supposes the jtcene 
to be taking place in 1300, when Alberto dclla Scala waa ahcady 
an ai;cd man; but when D«n(e really wrote the Purgalone, be 
knew that Albcrlo h-d died in Sefiembcr, ijoi ; and thin pn- 
nouDCcmcnt g( the Abbot iii therefore a nimuUtcd prophecy. 

t mal dti corpn inUro ; Gary translates ; "Of body ill compact, 
and wane in mind." which rendeni the sense better than moit of 
the translations, includinic my own prcvioti« onca. A Tuican 
(ricnd ha> poinlcd this out (o me. Undemland : " male inlcto del 
corpo, e peegio [intcro) della mcnte." " Complete " ts, 1 think, a 
more literal rcntlciing than "compact." The probable reason 
why the Italian Comnientatora nive ao little interpfetaiion i>( tfa« 
pB»KaKe is that "' mal iaitro dtl torfn> " 1%, to an Italian, a perfectly 
plain expression. Hal i> an adverb contracted from malt. The 
adjccti^i-e mah could not properly be so sboiicncd. The Homao 
Chuich has always follovred ihc rule of ihe Jcuish Church (/.vrifi- 
rat xici, 17-31;, that DO deformed pcr&on migni enter the priesthood. 

Cinlo xvrii 

he h»» installei] his son (Giuseppe), ill-cofnpktc in 
body, and wofK in mini, and who was base-born." 

Duite concludes his narration of the interview. 

Tant* era gii di li dji not trescono ; 
Ma <)acsla intcsi, e ritener mi piacijuc* 

1 know not whether he sftid more, or whether he 
Goued speaking, to far beyond u« hatd he ulreiidy run 
on : but this much I did heir, and was glad to retain 
it (in my mctnofy). 

BcBTcnuto thinks Dante's meaning is, that he noted 
Ue aee (act that it would be his duty to severely ccn- 
nre the vioiators of sacred things. It is evident that 
■ Ibc above episode Dante has been reproving the lay 
lordi who, in his time, had unjustly taken possession 
o/tbegDodft of Holy Church. 

Ditaiom V. — Dante now teaches how Accidie must 
be rooted out, by ^ving some instances of its un- 
fartuiute effects. 

The examples arc followed by warninRS. The 
fvrmelJtca who came out of Egypt (compare Canto ii, 
^/ pcrmhcd through their cowardly sloth, and did not 
euer on the inheritance of Canaan (Numb, xiv; Deul. 
t. 2^36; Heb. iii, 13-ig). Many of the companions 
tt£oe*s chose to remain in Sicily with Acestes {^iKid, 

*titmtr mi piat^wt: Bartoli (Stom deUu Lttteralmu fM/iaiM, 
^ vt, MTI II. pp. 13J, IJ4) think* Pantr ha* inlrodaved Diia 
of San /cnn (or no other object than (of Ibc purpo«i- of 
initi hii mouth thU vituperation o( All>crln dclla Scala 
_ Matard *on, (or bv(l) •>( whom he evidently entertain* 
lecliBC*) "i^ ^^ rcmarka that the Abboi'a ccnaurc of Ihcm 
k fc«^ itBivd ia hia ncmory with a plcaHura that waa toinuwhal 


ReaJin^ on the PurgatoruK Canto xviii. 

V, 746-761), and so {orfeited their share in the inherit- 
ance of Italy. They chose safety rather than glory, 
and that was the evidence of the sin of Accidie. Bcn- 
vcnuto bcgii us to admire how gracefully Dante makes 
Virgil now introduce two spirits who arc both showing 
their detestation of Accidie. 

£ quel cKe m' era ad oKni unpo $occi>rs<i ija 

Dine ; — " Volgiti in qua, vcdinc due 
Venire, dando all' accidia di morw)."— 

Ami he who was my succour in even,- need, said: 
■' Turn thee hither, hehohl two of them coming, 
Uttering reproaches against (//(. biting; ui) Accidie." 

Benvenuto thinks Dante shows great skill in repr 
scnting the two first spirits singing the praises of ll 
energetic, such as the Virgin Mat)- and Julius Cscsi 
while the two now arriving, walk, on the other hand? 
singing the bad examples offered by the Slothful. 

Dante next describes the song of the new arrivals, 
and tells us how they first sang of an instance of the 
disastrous effect of Sloth on the children of Israel, aa^ 
then of another from pagan history. 

Diretrn a tutti dicean:--" Prima fue 

Morta la ucnte " a cui il mar %' apetmc, 

Che vedcBse Jordan Ic ercdc sue ; " — 135 

*fut Morla : It will be remembered that «( the whole race <rf 
the children of Inrncl who ciDsacd the Red Sea on dry ground, 

ioahua nnd Caleb were the only two who lived lo enter into the 
'romised Land. See Numi. xiv, 26-31: "And the Lord apukc 
untu Moses and unto Aaron, xaying, How long «ha1l I bear with 
thi«cvil conKicgat ion, which muimuraKainstmc? 1 have heard the 
murmuringa of the children o( Uracl, which they murmur aKainM 
nne. Say unto them, As truly as I live, sailh the Ixird, as ye have 
■polcen it) mine car*, sn «>'ill 1 dn to you: Vour carca»ea Httnll (all 
in this wilderneKH ; and all thai were numbered oi you, according 
to your whole number, from twenty years old and upward, which 
have munnurad against me. Doubtless yc shall not come into ttic 
land concerning which I »wear to make you dwell ihercin. 

Canto SVTll. Readings on the Purgatorio. 


E, — " Quclta * cIk t' sRanno non ■offcrse 
Fino ilia fine col figliuol d' Anchisc, 
S£ >tciaa a vits «ciua glori* olTcTse."-^ 

Coming behind all (the others) they said, (the one) : 
" Thai nation for whom the sea waa opened were all 
dead before the Jordan saw their heirs.'' And (the 
other spirit snid) : "They who could not endure the 
toil unto the end with the son of Aocbiseagavc them- 
lelves up to a life without ^\ory.^ 

The glory would have been to share in founding the 
Ugbt)' Roman Empire, instead of remaining in Sicily 
in inglorious ease. 

Diotc now brings to a concluiiion what he has to 
tt]r about Accidie, and with it this noble Canto, by 
pnpaiin^ for what has to be described in the Canto 
tfau follows, which contains his account of a wonder* 

Vol quando (Or cla noi tanto divi»e 

Qocir ombre, che wAtt pifi non potirsi, 140 

Nuovo pcnsiero <lcntro a me ai misc, 

CiM the smn of Jephunnch, and Joshua the ion of Nun. . . . 
M u lor yoD, your carcaic*. they ^hall fall in this wildcrncM." 

*AmA* (gvnic): This cp>aodc relates an cffecl of diBK^accful 

S)All(inong ihi- Trojatii who followed ^lincas. When in Sicily 

ki m celebrating funeral (cameii by the tomb of his father 

t xh i m . ctnatn pervonii, btith old mon, younK rnen and women, 

*nO(d oat bjr their long voyage anil hard toil*, bui'nt .tneas'B 

di^M that Ihey might not have to leave Sicily and canfront 

•r* ^njccra. ALnct^n cvrutitgtcd them as a colony, and left 

4f wkule unwarlikc crowd in contempt See Vir(;. Ain. v, 604 

*«». Of th«e Iwo example! Perer writea: "In esse vitsi 

nintto quel lubito abbandonArsi dcgli accidiosi a miscrc vuglie, 

(MMdcni ■ piaiigcrc r ifucrclar»i, tutli in^irinc rnccolti a danno 

Mncoc ; quel Uiro t>u);iardu anteporrc i|ualunque fatica v male 

dtl poiaatu al faticoso k tcmulo prcHcntc ; quell' iii;<!ir *enui 

Imnae i pericoti chc li a«pcttnno, porgendo scmprc pii^ avido 

akoltn a clii p«u sformala o piu <ipaven1o«a nc fa U piltunt ; la 

taHMccnlc codardifjia andc rc<:in«i a noja i;li mcm! bencRcj, e 

ta|MO a vile ogni alia spcranjra c promcsaa : e infinc k pit) 

■Iraiide imprcsc mr opera loro htatdatc, accmatc o ratlristatc 

o rttte nine." (/ Smt Ctrthi, pp. 190-191). 

XOi Readings oii ihe Purgalorio. Canto xviil. 

Del qual piil altri nacquero t diverst ; * 
C Unto d' uno in nluo vancggiti, 
Che gli occhi p«r vaRh«»a t ricoperiti, 

E il pcnsamcntc in sogno iraamuUi. J 145 

Then when those aptrits had passed so far away from 
UM. that wc could no longer sec them, a new thoii||;ht 
atone within inc. from which (in turn) were born other 
thoujjhts. many and varying; and so much frain one 
to (he nther did I rnmbie on, thut I closed my eyes in a 
reverie, and Iransformed my meditntion intoa dream. 

*ptHiiero . . . Dtl qual ^u aUri uaaiutro: Compare V\r%. ^m. 
iv, 185. a86: — 

" At(|uc animam nunc hue celcr«m, nunc divtdii illuc, 
In partcsquc rapil varios. pcrquc omnia vcnat." 
The same lincK tta:ai in viii, 10, 31. Compare aiKo Inf. xxiii, ta 

t vagheaa : Cetiaii thinks thi« expresses a desire an the part of 
Dante lo go to sleep. 

lAt the conclusion of Ihe Canle, Peree (p. 192-3) maket the 
following rctl<:ction» : " Perchi in meitt> al cr>rrcrc Ai <)uestj 
penitent!, nnns'odcpreghiL'nkr Ann, pcrch^queiloiilaolocerehio, 
a ctii non udiamo assegnata prcghicra spccialc P Fonc I' mtcrdctu 
dalccmdcH'al/arca Uin aiichc colic labbra la prcghieia iacerba 
ricordania e pcna per anime, chc iin giorno >1 prcgare furono 
troppo rcBitc, c chc or dcbbonu iotcndcre meKlio chc mai, come 
la prcghicra £ il piii Hublimc ira i privikgi dcglt uomini, (jucllo chc 
loro pcrmcilc d' avvicinaini c pailarc a Diu. Parse tl continuo 
raccoglimcnto ncll' orazionc mcntalc. e il pianto misio con csu, 
ticn Itiogn d' oraiiane vocale per genie, cne dee rammenlaru e 
piangctc li- noic e i diva^amenli del prcgarc anticn. t'ora' anchc 
t' accrbo pnela, chc in queslo ccfchio non nomina ahro 
|)Ct»onaggio, fuorchi un uomo il quale pOi che aliri avrcbbe 
d<n utn intendert ad ura^ione, vuole avvisatci che e^iandio il lungo 
ttalincg^iarc e acciilia, «c il coffn nc trjic allctlamcntial kuo agio, 
c V anima ^ lunlanu dat pcnsicri di Oio: onde poi gli acccnti, 
indivoli C r Bgiatn Hcdcrc i fari^j scontarc col silcnzjo delta pi« 
mcdilaxionr e cul dibaKi« del cnrrcrc ^n^a riptiao. Sc ai noli che 
gli accidiosi dell' Inferno, nell' imu della Kligia palude. barhugliano. 
mano'i f<'isono li in patola iitUra {JtJ. vii, 115, 116) ; a che il gik 
accidioso BclacquH ncll' Antipurgatorio i tosto ricnnoiciuto da 
Dante atU lo'tt ftarott {t^urg. iv, ill) si polrcbbc anHpetlare chc la 
hna irnnin di que due passi icoppiaiMC, f|UiiHi a insaputa 
Poeta. anco nell impor sileuxio a^i accidiosi che ci Ktanno 


Rfadings on ifu Purgalorio. Canto XIX. 



V/eleft Dante, at the close of ihe last Cnnto, fallinginto 
a deep sleep. In the opening lines of this Canto, wc find 
him asleep and still in the Fgurth Cnmicc 

Bcnvcnuto divides the Canto into fuur parts. 

In the First Division, from ver. i to vcr. 3^, Oai 
relates his dream. 

/« thi Second Division, from ver. 34 to ver. 69. 
dcscrtbcti the appearance of ait Angel, who points ou 
the way to him, purities him from the sin of Accidie. 
ushers the two Poets through the entrance by whi 
they aftcend to the l-'ifth Cornice. 

In the Third Division, from vei. 70 lo ver. ia6, Dant 
speaks of the penalty of the Avaricious ; and his inter- 
view with the spirit of the virtuous Pope Adrian V, 

In the Fourth Division, from ver, 127 to ver. I45, the 
spirit of the Pope clears up a doubt in Dante's mind, and 
convinces him that temporal dignity ends with this Uf^ 

Division I. — Dante is about to relate his dream, bul 
before doing so, he is careful to point out that it tooll 
place an hour before dawn, thereby implying that 
would come true. (See Furg. ix, 13 tt seg. ; and /n/ 
xxvi, 7). 

Canto SIX. Readings on Hu Purgatorio. 


Neir on * cbe iMti pud i1 calor diumo 
intcpidar piU il (rcddo delln lun«, 
Vinto d» Icm a talor da SattimB : t 

QvMtdo I gconunii tor mnggior rortunn 
Veu;iono in ohenlc, inrun/i all' allta, 
Surfer per via ch« [vko Ic sta bruna ; 

At ihe hour, when the heat of the day, vanctuished by 
tlKtftTTh, and Bomcltmca by Saturn, can no lon^^cr 
wtnn the cohlocss of the moon; — when the geo- 
nunn see, before dau-n, their Fortuna Major rise 
in the Rast, by a p;ith which will not long remftin 
duifcr it (the Fonuna Major, so that It may be vis> 

*!Uf ard, etc.; Dr. Moore {Ti'm Rtfirmcn, p. lOj), ob- 
."'In thin passage we hav« the hour bcfoic dawn on 
lApnl iith.dcKhtKHby Iwnindicatinnslor. an Hcnvcnuto 
■iirr-doublyl. 1. It wa» the coldeit hour of the 
t^Mtr^wr. 3. The Inlcr »tai« of Aquunuii ind ihc rnremoM 
lifPbrcs wrre i>n ihc hori/on. Tliis. perhaps, vi: maybe 
*W to talc for Kiantei] t»lhc mcAnini; o( the maf^i^iifr forlttna 
rfttf «uarda,vcr. 4, It was a peculiar arrangement of doiH, 
CMfnfMiddkK (oan«lhil can be lorined out of eertain ittars on 
Ifa iMtne* oflhesic two coiiRtclLtions. Thchc weic now In Ihe 
cMbdorc the dawn." Compare Chaucer, Troitui lUiJ Cttaida, 


'And vhiin ihc cocic, commune astmlogcr, 
Gao on his bretl 10 hcatc and after crowe, 
And Lvcifer. (he dales tnenanr;cr, 
Oaa to riK and out bi> bcamca ihrowc. 
LAad e*tward rote, to him that could it know 
' Toftuna Major." 

rJa Stttunto : Il was a popular belief ihnl, when the planet 
m ilic meiidtan, greater cold wa> (cli on carilL Thia 
lori^' <he fairt Ihnl the jiUnci in que«tio«i wan Ihe one 

fl;t- Sun. Compare Vin^jl, Giprg. i, ij5, jjfr; — 
, cncli nicnKCi ct lidcra icrva ; 
I tit »iesc quo Mvlla rcccptel." 
■he ancicnis fell int" tliiti error front being 
iiiin nf heal. Brunello l.aiini (ft Vntor, 
111. t^ji. L^ij haa : ^ Quar Satumus, qui est Ic bOvcrainB 
4, eai crvci CI felon* <tniel auJ niilifHoal) et de frnide 
ta par tuu )« sii ocneii en ■ an ct xiii jours." 

Readings on the Piirgaiorio. Canto XVX, 

Benvenuto saj's, that geotmmtia is called astrologia minor, 
and it is said to be a common refuge for astrologers, and 
ought never to be entirely despised, as it has some of its 
principles in astrology. But he adds : " They may say 
wliat they will, 1 do not believe at all in gcomancy, 
any more than I believe in astrology," He adds that 
geomancers use many figures made of dots, but one 
especially, which they call Kortuna Major, which was 
taken from six stars happening to be seen in an exactly 
identical position to the six dots, as in the annexe 
figure : — 


Benvenuto remarks that these stars are said to be 
the end of the Constellation Aquarius and at the begin 
ning of Pisces. Also that the Indians and Saracens 
used to go to the sea-shore at sunrise, to mark their dot 
either odd or even, on the sand. 

Dante, having stated what time it was, now proceed 
to relate a dream within a dream. Benvenuto thinks 

I that by it, he wishes to foreshadow the subject he is go- 
ing lo treat of; for, as he has already discussed the first 
four deadly sins, which are sins of the mind, vix.. Pride, 
Envy. Anger and Sluth, so now. being about to discuss 
the three remaining, vir.. Avarice, Gluttony and Sen- 
suality, which arc of the body, and sins that are ever 
seeking pleasures, be pictures them to be represented by 
the Siren. The vi»on seems in part a reproduction of 
l^rov. vii, lo-ti ; the distorted eyes, the bent form, the 
crippled hands, the extreme pallor, corresponding to the 
physiognomic signs of those evil passions. 

Canto Xnc. Reading on tlu Purgahn'o. 


Bearenuto supports this view, as it is a mistaVe to 
that the Siren represented Avarice alone. 

Hi -nnne m so^no una femmina * balbn, 

Negli occhi f;uercia c sopra i pii distorla, 
Con li: man nonchc. e di colore acialba.t 

kbnirava; c, cofnc il aol confoiia to 

Lc ^dde membra chc la nottc ag^fava, 
Co«l lo ifuardo fnio l« ttctA scArIa ] 

Lalinfua, c poscia lulta la driieava 
Id poco d' an, e la tmamto volto. 
Come amor rgol, co«l l« colofav«,Jj 15 

Thtft catnc to me in dream a woman, stammering, 
"^ tquiatini; cj-es, and distorted feet, with hands 
lopped off. and of a pallid hue. I gazed at her ; und, 
■■■licSuD revivea the chilled litnbx that the night be- 
"umb*. ao did mv look restore her tongue to liberty, 
lai tlten in brier space, caused her body to became 

/■ iMt .- CoPtraX the two words /numwH " a female " in this 

GKULpplicd III the fal«e Siren: and donna, "a lady." in I. 2C>. 

tniBa; pallid, frnm Latin italtart. Sec Arioslo, Eelogn, p. 

"^•1 rampnlrr papavem alia rasa, 
Qsal Kialbu lalcc al icmpre vcrde alloro." 
iai a U\ Transliiion of Palladium, tap. 14 <ap. Gnu. Dit.): 
'Ohm b caincra dec ea^cr acialbata, e quale i il buoro acialbo 
[i^. aa the roixn has to be whitened, and what ii the bent while- 

lii/sa* turia La HngMi: Duti interprets thii: "cioi pttrlcvile 
(t nitcHicibUe." i.(. gave tn Iwf tongue utterance that waa in- 


lit . . . votia, Cumt aitor [■no*, rail U toloravtt : Some infer from 

f«M SmMM, y axiWi, "d' un color pallido, quaxi come d' amnre," 

imi (ram other paa^aKcN, that Danic intended to aptak t>( pallor as 

IbcoatoBfof Lnvc. But Lombardi cnminenU: "Come richiedc 

perfarinamorareirisguardanti,' AndAndreoIi: "gcncral- 

ilc c' lonainoriBmn del ro^co." And I>Bntc evidently is mean' 

to dr*ctibc lomc kind of change that paired over tbc face nf 

Strrn. She ii first described as bcini; already palhd (</i o^tirrt 

<], and under Dante'i glance the changes colour. I take tt 

dwrwfort to aicnify a warm blush. 


Readingi oh iiu Purgatorio. Canto Xll 

straight, and her pallid checks to assume that warm 
colour, which Lov« desires. 

Bcnvenulo says Ihat the itatHnuring tongue means 
Avarice, which never speaks openly and clearly but 
deceitfully; it means Gluttony, because drunkenness 
makes a man speak thick, and Sensuality', because M 
makes him a liar and a flatterer. The squinting eye de- 
notes Avarice, because the miser is blind frum ihecrav-_ 
ing of acquisitiveness and of hoai'dinf;; it denotes bot^ 
Gluttony and Sensuality, because over indulgence 
stroys the eyes both bodily and mentally. She is lai> 
because in those three sins man never walks in the ri^hl 
paths. She is tnaimai, because the Miser never uses his 
hands to give, and the Gluttonous and the Sensual 
never work, but arc idle and slothful. All three, tl 
Miser, the Glutton, and the Voluptuar)-, have palli^ 

And now Dante describes the soft seductive strain^ 
that issued from the mouth of her, who had assume 
beauty which was a mockery and deceit. 

P<M cti' ell' »vea il parla r cosl * duciolto^ 
Cominciava a cantar «i che con pena 
U« lei avrei mlo intento 4 rivoHu. 
— " lo »on,"— canlava,— " io son doke Sirena,} 




*toii: Thi« refers lo II. i«, iji— 

"CwA latKURfdo DIM Ic&cea tcorta 
La linfjuK," ct stq. 

tuii'o iutenlo: Compare Pnrg. iii, ri. 13: — 

" [.« menle mia. chc prima era riatretta, 
l.o inic-nto rHlIargd, ticnirtc vatja." 
t Jokt Sima : !Si-urta/<ini obacrvcn that al^io in ancient mytho- 
loRV Ih« Sirens were Bymbots of lh« al1racli\tneiB of worldlV| 
plcsaures. i'npc unconMioutly reproilucvd Onntc, when he ' 
in his E%Mrj- on Man, li, 119: — 

: wrot^fl 


into XIX. RudtHgs en the PurgaUnio. 109 

Cbe i niArinan in meczo mar diamago ; 30 

Tanto ton di piaccre a sentir piena. 
lo volii Uljnc * dc) foo catnmin vago 
Al canto mle; equal raei» si at»A 
Rado Ben pane, at tultn I' appago." — 

Aad ao aoon as she had thus got her speech unloosed, 
■he bc^n to sing so (sweetly), that it would have 
been hiird indeed for me to have turned my attention 
from het. " I am." she Mng. "the sweet Siren, who 
bewitch the mariners in mid-ocean, so full uin I of 
pteuantncM lo hear. I turned L'lyssoi froni his 
wanderini; path to my cong, and whoso companies 
mh tnc rurtly departs from mc, so wholly do I ^atiafy 

Another Udy \s now seen by fJante in his drenm, who 

Jti> to thame the Siren, the ii>'mbol of pleasure. Com- 

|HBUt(in differ very considerably as to what this new 

rWKTtypifies, and Scartazzini does not agree with those, 

UDMgwhom U Ozanam, who think she is a symbol of 

Wii4atn, or that nhe is Lucia (a symbol uf Truth), or of 

the Cliard] ; but he thioiis with the older Commentators 

llttt (he represent* Reason, Temperance, Philosophy, or 

intdlectual Virtue. 

She iddresses. Virgil in a tone of indifpiant remon- 
Mnoce for allowing Dante, their joint papil. to gaze on 
tk^ecehful pteasum of the world. 

I^ft "Vic* t*s tnonater ai *c TnEhtfut mien, 
^H At, to be hat«d, n<«dft bui 10 be »cen ; 
^H Yet accn too oft, familiar wilti her face, 
wKk ^'^ fii" cfMJure, then pily, th<n tmbrace." 
^vhut • Bcnvrauto itoticcii Uante'i iniciake in r«|vre»n(ini; 
1^ aa Kavtag bacr) fascinated by ihc Sjr«it, for tic remarks 
nwaooal]') that, in ihr OJviwy, Homer t«ll« us iKui L'lytaca 
Hm Siren* and tillcri hi> care with wax so as not to h«ar 
_ Hr tinnka Uantc muu have mcani Circe, who dc- 
Ui^BMM br one jrcar, ct Calypto, who kept him a pruoncr 



ReadtMgt on the Piirgatorio, 

Ancor non era »usl bocca richiuM, 

Quftndo una donna* Hpparvc sanla c prenta 
Lunghcuso mc f per fnr colei confuKa. 
— "O Virgilio, Q Virgtlio, chi i quest* ? "— 
Fieramcntt diccv* ; cd ei vcni« J 
Con gLi Dcchi fitti pure in quclla onesta. 

L' altra prendeva, I e dinanxi 1' apria 

Pendcndo j drappi, c mobtravanil il ventre; 
Quel mi ivegiid col puzzojj ehc n' uscta. 


Not yet was her mouth closed again, (i.e. while she 
still was singing) when quick at my side Uicre Bp> 
pcared a saintly lady to put her to confusion. "O 
Virgil, Virgil, who is this?" she sletnly exclaimed; 


*Jon>ut: Bcnvcnulo points oul that whereas Dante had calle 
the Siren /cmmiHa, a female (I. 7), he styleii this one ^^<mni^, a fi 
more honimrublc Icrtn. Benvcnulu'a worda are: "Bene 
ikiam dominam. ubi illain vocavcnit famulatn, quia ratio deb) 
dominari, et passio famulari." 

t t.uwIiaM 104 : " hy my side." Compare Vibi Jfnava, § ki 
"InqiicTpomo. . . CO mi scdL-a in parte, ncUa quale ricordandon 
di lei. diacgnava un angelo sopracene tsvolcttc : e menlre io 1 dti 
nava, voUi gli occbi, e vidi lungo me uomiat a' queli »i convcn 
far on ore. " 

^fi vcnia : On this see Renvenuio: "et sic vide qnod ocull 
Dantis in carnc positusretpiciebat tflntum cum dclcciatione ilL 
primum lubricam, >ed oculus Virgilii sine came renpictcluit . 
aecundam cum veneratinnc: ilia en im videbaiur pulchra ct < 
tnlii, i«ta vciu rigidia, acd vcncfabilia." 

g L' altra frin,Uv» : bcart.tzziiii agrees with the majority of I 
Commeotaiors, «^. ihc, Benvcnuto, Bwti, Daniclln Vcntur 
CiaKioli, Wiltc, O^anam and others, in thinking that the Mint 
lady Bciied the stammering one ; but some, among whom aT«T 
Landino, Vclluiello, Cetari, Brunone Bianchi, ana PkiiaUlJm. 
thmk it was Virgil who laid hold on the Siren. ji 

WPHtvt: On thi» Gioberli ha*: " Nota to schifo chc ingenci^ 
r ultimo verso. Danic non era pncta mollc, chc votcsse rifF>a>'- 
iniiirc ai letlori i) ditgusto quandoi necessario a ritrarre la vehtl 
dell' obietto, c tanto piu quanda confcriscc alto vcopo moral 

SLMSta donna, dal cui ventre apctto Mcitu tmi ^■rirn tttjuo b vol 
elutU) 'I mitndo <i/^»im {litf. xvii), cioft la (rode, I' inganno, 
biwa." Giobcrti IS vcr)' fuU of admiration for the life and vivaci^ 
of tneae three lines. 

CtfltoxiX. Rtadings on ike Purgatorio. ui 

ftfld he advanced with his eyes fixed solely upon that 
honourable one. She %tifci the ntticr one. and laid 
bcT bare in front, rending her dtupety, and showed 
me her belly : this awoke me with the stench that 
Uwacd from it. 

** L'antaf^nismc du \*icc et dc la vertu itait Ic sujct d'une 

fkUe qui fut chere comme symbole aux mythographcs 

Ac I'lniiquii^. et i ses philosophcs comme le^on. Le 

pihe ilalien s'cn empare et la rajcunit. Deux femmes 

lu ooi apparu. L'une Jtait p&Ic, diflbrmc et b^gue ; 

IBM le regard arrite (tur elte &emblait tui rendre la 

beaittj. la couleur «t la voix: elle chantait, ct Sir^ne 

laiiDonicasc elle captivait dejA lesorcillcii imprudcntes, 

L'ttitrc sc niontrait A son tour simple el venerable, ctle 

leuii im superbe regard sur sa rivale, et faisant d^chirer 

Ks f(tcincnt», la laissait voir altcinte d'unc infectc coi^ 

niFOea. Ue ccs femmes, l'une ctait la voluptc, I'autre 

U iapmt." (O^aium, Dante el la Philmophie CathoUijue, 

Raveooto praises the words of the Poet with much 
"thuBUTp ; and asks if the filth of the miser does not 
Wfcul cventhini:; beautiful and honourable with its 
^^aen\ ju<it like the harpies befouled the feast. How 
yai the Blth of the glutton. Into what mire does not 
'xdninkard till from his drunkenne&s? 


Dimiem II. — We now Icam how Danie, hanng been 
Jled upon three times by Virgil to awake, rouses him- 
•KiL and 6nds that it is full daylight, probably about 
iijD, of the morning of Easter Tuesday, being the third 
iij that the Poet* have been in Purgatorj'. We are 
ifcartly (o beur of his purgation by the Angel of sin of 



Readings on the Purgatorio. Canto XK. 

lo volsi*Rli occhi al buon MacMro: — "Almcn trc 
Voci t" ho mcBBC,"- dicea : — "(urRi e vieni, 
Trovidm lit porta i per la qunl lu entre." — 

Su mi levBi, e lutti e»n f^ii |neni 

Dcir atto dl t niion del ucro montc, 
Ed andaviiin col sol nuovo alle rent.J 

Se^ertdo lui, portava la inla fronic 

Come colui chc I' lia di pcoaicr carca. 
Cbc fa di si un meizo arco di ponte ; 

I turned my ejea to the ROod Master: "At Icaat 
three calls have 1 given thee," he said : " arise and 
come on, let us find ihc opening through which thou 
ma>'C»t enter.'* 1 srosc, und already were all the 
Cornices of the holy mouniHin fitted with the bnud 
dxyli^ht, iind we were walking (towutdii the WcHt) 
with the newborn Sun at our backs. I'ollowtng him, 
I carried my he^d afl one who is overwhelmed with 
thought, and who (by stooping) makes of himself 
a half arch of a bridge. 




*la vobi, et scq.: Dr. Mootc. speaking of the multiphcitjr of 
variantE in thl« pastaRC, writes: "11ie readinKs in tnene two 
liiiCK are recorded on account of the citraordtnary varialioru in 
the MSS^ but I do Rol see how to delcnnine what may hav 
been the original rcadinK- Nor can the eiact reading of 
old Commentators be determined in any case but ihutc ol B< 
venuto and Buti. as noted above" [TttluAl Criticism, pp. 

r la porta : Some read f «/«r(>i ; other* P a^trie. 

J ioi Btoio alU Ttii : " In line* 37-39 It was now full dayltght, 
with the Son on their backs, so that they were still journering 
towards the West, when Ihey enter the fifth Cornice, wnerc 
Avarice and ProdiKality are punished. Ob»er\'e here the ad- 
mirable filncsBwith which Dante times his prof;resa to that the 
time »pent in the Cornice where Accidia, or Spiritual Sloth, i» 
punished is exactly coincident with the hours of the niRht— 
'the night when no man can work.' He enters it a* dariinesi 
comes on Uh we read in x\'ii, 70-80), atid leave* it nett mornine, 
as Boon an he awaken uith the niH>i<(i u>f <iis, J$), being mildly 
chidcd by Virgil (or Ihc IcRK'h of hii slumbcn \»\x, 54). I miidit 
perhaps, mention here that it will be found that in each o( the 
other Curnice« he tpends from three to live hours." Dr. Mw>re 
{Tint Ht/frtHC4i, p. lob). 

Canto XIX. Reading on the Purgatorio. 


[d two lives of Dante it is mentioned that he stooped. 
BocGiCCio {Vita di Dante, 'm Boccaccio's commentary. 
voL t, p. 37) sa^i ; AndA aiquanto curttUo; and Filippo 
Vilani {Vita Danlt%, afi. Scartax/mi) : "Is dum mtnis 
mtkniutl, cmrvatis aliquantulum renibm mctdtbat. iticnsu 
tmnj^m, ma$Kuetu4oijue aspectu." 

Dante is deep in meditation, thinking about his 

MOdofol dreaiD. wben the Angel addresses him ; 

■nd we are to infer that he shows himself to Dante. 

Ih w^ that fact is not actually stated; only his 

bnid while swoo-likc wings being mentioned. Perez 

(^at p. 195) thinks the Angel did not show himself at 

il. caeepi by his wings, but 1. 54 sp«aks of him as 

Ijaf tlighlly above the heads of the Poets as they 

fit the ascent to the Cornice above.* Dante is 

dvsyi very precise, and while it might be contended 

Au, hy the wings alone being mentioned, nothing 

"m «u Ken of the Angel, it might equally be main- 

iMeitbat, where an Angel's radiance is too powerful fur 

f)v hnnan eje to face. Dante is careful to mention the 

■rjinitance, as in Purg. xv. 14, where he expressly 

ixt that he had to make a sunshade of bis hands. 

'' Aogel first call^t the Poets to the opening of the 

^Jiray; he next seemingly guides them with his 

'-9 into it : be then fan& Dante, and with a wing-like 

48 omwa the fourth P. from his brow ; and hnally 

. dtHttiun him with the benediction, "blessed arc 

tfc«y that rnoum." 

Qaand* io adi';— "Vcntle, qui li varcA,'' — 
Parian to mode loavc e benigno, 

*Ttet idea el the Aneel however U not in accardutcc with 
■ IMC of the two duputcd inteiptcuiiunk o( I. ^, whtch 1 
!■*« wfopled. 


Readings tm the Purgahrio. Canto SIX- 

Qual non %,\ sente in quettn mortal tnxrci.* 
Con I' «li apcrtc chc parcan di dgno, 
Volscci in ui colui chc si parlonne, 
Tra' due parcti + di:! dura macigno. 
MosM le p«nne poi e venlilonn«. 

Qui Imgntl affcrmando csscr beat!,} 
Ch* avnn di consolar I' anime donncS 

* inarta, march, ia uacd in the same aenie as it ta in Varaa 

Trtviaiiita, the region or district of Trtviao. The word la fouad 
in the Gothic Marca, a border country [tec Skcafn Klyamtogittl 
Dictionary 0/ liu English t^ngMgf.t.v." mark"), and also in the 
Icelandic Mari [border- land), wnich Vigruaaon {le^UtitJii DkliMt- 
dry) says is a word common to all Teutonic language*, and thm 
ori|;inal ftennc i» *' outline, border." ■ 

trro* rfitf fiartti; Buti comments: "cioi tni du' parrti mi 
monle ch' era di pietra macigna, u' era icala da montare in 
euao. Qucsti du' parcti di pietra dura f^i^nificano due co»taruie 
e fcTiDcrav, che di Hvere chi monta a purgarsi del pcccatu de la 
avarijila; cioi prima lo Uto ritto duro a rctistcrc, chc I' awcr- 
sit^ nan lo lompa, c cost si purghcrft del pcccalo dc la avarieia.' 
I^ui luginl . . . nstr bttUi: Perez (of), til. p. 194) saj-a Ih«l 
thcic tears arc not the usclcs« and cowardly tears which, mixed 
with blood, were shed by the caiiiff throng in the veniilmlc oj 
Hell, and gathered up under their leet by (aul reptiles. " Qac<t« 
t pianto onc-itnmenle operovo, chc, misto ai nolcrti passt c alle 
acccse meditfl^ioni. col penilcntc fcnore adcnipic I' antico dttetM 
di carilL £ tal pianto bencdice 1' Angelo guardiano del ccrchio." 
§Jimiit: The Voc. Mia Crutta, t.v. "donna," g 9, has " Ponaa 
c madonna, vale Padrona asaoluia." The Vcc^^ario auolc* tbc 
following from Lippi's ifaUimntik, cant, x, il. 6$. whkn ci 
explains the u*e ot the word here :— 

" II Kc di qutsto Kcirrto, giunio a mortc, 

La mia cuf^ina qui. chc fu sua donna 

(Non Avcndo ficliuoli o altri in carte 

Propinqui pitl) lascid donna c madonna." 

1 Ifanalale the above: "ITie King of this realm, bein^ at 

point of death— having no children or other near relations im 

vivinc at his court— left my cousin, who was his wife, abnola 

proprietress (/tonim r uutJonHn) here of everything." Heie we ha 

itoinut in the double »cni>c, of (n) (he wife ; (hi the proprietr 

Andreoli hat: "dfinne, froffiftam (LaL diymiim.y' BrunOM 

Bianchi it very clear: "affennando esaere beati coloro chc noa 

cssendo accidiosi, piangono le colpc loro ; impcrcioccht avranao 

1' aniinc luro lionnt di ctrnwAtr, cioi posseditrtci di conaolaaiooeJ^ 

Blanc (l-'pc. DanQ tmyt the sentence b ctcccdingly hard 

^anto xix Headings on the Purgatorio. 115 

^Vheo I heard : " Come, here is the pMcage," ottered 
in so sweet aad gentle a tone, an nne never hears in 
this region of raoriaU. With outspread winget that 
seemed as if of a swan, ilid he who thus had spoken 
to us turn us upwsrds between the two walls of hard 
rock. Then he moved his pinions, and fanned us, 
afiimung that the> »re blessed i}ui lugtnt (that mourn 
on earth), for (in heaven) thc^' shiiU hiive their souls 
endowed with comfort (/i(. mistresses of consolation). 

We said on page 113 that the Angel had erased the 
Qunh P. from Danlc's brow. He has now therefore 
but three remaining, namely, 

the I', of Avarice and Prodigality; 
the p. o[ muttony; and 
Ibe P. of Sensuality. 
The Poets are now ascending the stairway leading 
from the Fourth to the Pifth Cornice. Dante is ab- 
sorbed in deep thought. Virgil asks the reason. Dante 
replies that a new vision has entered into his mind. 
Virgil shows Dante thai he has read his thoughts, and 
A« his lision was of a certain Sorccrrss, iillugorically 
npnsenling the Heeling pleasures of the world, which 
wr to be expiated in the Three Cornices above them. 
Heidtnonishcs IJantc how man may avoid the spells. 
—''Che bat. che pure in vtr la terra guati ? " *— 

|hn,bat ts thewordu evidently refer tD the words in SI. itailhnt 
1. 1 " tttcned are ihvir that mourn : for thvy uKall he comforted," 
•Dt aunt txhc Jfniw in the Kcnic "they shuil be mi!ll^e^He^ of, i.t. 
''<faB tpc in Ihcir power," and di nntotar in ihc passive lignihca- 
mof"|a be con«o4ed.* Blanc ndmils lKiwc\-er that this ts \CTy 
bf(tcb»d,and I think the signiAcation 1 have pven atxive of 
tmrnt^aJranm, at froprutana, abiolnte miitrcit«, or pfoprictrcsa, 
■•■•dkicRt icntlertng of the worda to make the Mintcncc pei^ 

*(uti.' oat for gturdi. Guaniart is simply to look, and Is 
<b (o the German u-akrai, tuarUn. CuaUri or guaUatt It., 
lfe.fawU«r, Pr. g>t*tUi; la walch ; Siib*t. Crcm. Pr. guatU, O. 


Clic soU eopiR noi omai si piagnc 7 H 

Vedeati come I' uom da let bi *leg^A 

Biistili, e b»lti a icrra k calcagnc | fl 

Gli occhi rivoisi al logofo5 che gin 

I'r. entile, Ft. (in.) K"'!; ftaat 0. H. (t. u-aklin 
Q. tettcM, Goth. vaMr&, E. ■c-rtr-A. H«ncc It. 
Pr, aguaittir, O. Fr. ^B^fKr-^utKunr, It, hjh 
Pr. ajfiut (usu. in pi.), ambu»h. whence tUiguet^i 
kin, iitymohgicat DUliotmry, London, 1864.J I 
two wofda indifferently. 

*tortihnitali: This paasaKC on be trnnslam 
nantely (a) " When wt had aatcndcd a little way 1 
where wc hnd l«fl the Anjtel." and that is the i 
ftdopt ; i)r (ft) " BcinK> where wc both were on 
ascended by the Angel," or, "with the Angel fly 
tancc above u>." 

fiMtyition: Others rcftd tut/otsiun. It meana 
lion, doabt, miHKivinK-" 

last mipifga : Compare Fwff, iv, 7-S:— 
" qunndn «' ode co*a vede, 
Che tenga forte a si Vanifna volta 

^gwliea tirega: The lust of deceitful pleasure 
DKO as the lime ol Adam and Eve in the Gard 

\\Ckt tola . . . ii fiagnf: 1 have trun'lated: "w 
be wept fof." Bcnwnulo Kivm the aamc inl< 
with the choice of another, namely, " whv t 
(because we have departed froRi her, and ahe ' 
lain u» out of our way}." 

5 Gli iHthi riiTj^i al lotioto, Ct «<). On these 
betti exclaims: "Si potea dir megiio? Vedi 
siero; Purg. xiv, 148-151 :— 

'Chijimavi il cicln, e intorno vi li gin, 

i^antoxix. Readings on tlu Purgatorio, 117 

Lo Kent demo con le toir magne,"* — 

"Wh4t ail«th thee rhat thou garcat only on tJic 
nith ? " my Guide be^an to say to mc, when we had 
both kBcetxled a liitle way above the Angel. And 1 : 
" With such rni»t;ivin^ mxicev me to go a new vision, 

< which »o bends rac to it, that [ cannot dissever mc 

Ifrom the thought of it." "Hast thou seen." said he, 
"that ancient gorccrcss, who alone has to be wept for 
(in the three Comice^) above us* Hust ihou seen 

, how man is delivered from her ? Let that Miffice thcc. 

fanil suike the earth with thy heeU ('<'. qiiiekttn thy 
supsl and turn thine eyes upward lo the hue which 
the Eternal Kmg whirlelh with vast re vulu lions.*' 

Virgil notices Dante's ej-es bent upon the ground. 

The Almighty is compared lo a falconer ; and Virgil 

bidi. Danle look up in the falconer' <i lure, meaning that 

Man muM use this world's goodK, such as wealth, 

food, liuuiics, only so far as arc neccs&ar^' to sustain 

life, and treat them as things to be trodden under 

foot, as little and vile, but let his mental contempla- 

tioa be ioward& heaven, eternal and immonal. Then 

I**nte show^, by a noble comparison, how caserly he 

pilcceded to follow Virgil's .idvice, and Benvenulo 

Witei how appropriate the comparison is. As the 

tawV, which is by it* nature light. Hies ap on high in 

* >pirJted manner by a number of great wheels, so 

W our I*oci fly, by the wings of his mind wheeling 

tWid and round the Cornices of the high mountain. 

And at the falcon lirst looks down, at its feet, so is 

*n*MuiK- Compare I'urg.viii, tb-iS:— 
*E t altre noi dolccmcnte c dcrote 

Seguitat lei pet tutio I' inno inlero 
Avcndr> gli occhi allc tup-erne role " 
Gibou ttunks Ihu, cotnparini; rvti in Uie prgMol pnusaK^ "*i'h 
A^ ti*, 148 <K« atHke), one finds the same idea cxprcsMid in 
ttft Vit in«y understand rott here as " The Hcaveoa. ' 

quarry. He concludes the description b 
he ascended. 

(^uale il falcon cht prima ai pit li mtra 

Incti si volgc al ^rjdci.'t c xi pratcnde 
Per )o diiio dd pMio chc 11 il ttra ; 
Tal mi fee' io i| e Itii, quanta hi fcndi' 
La roccia per dar via a chi va &uso, 
N' Andai inGno ovc il ccichiar >i pre 

Even as the falcon, which first surveys hi 
turns him to the call, and sprciids his win; 
the desire of the Jbod that draws htm thjii 

*tii ^ii ti wiiVii: Cesar! {Btiteztf, vol. ii, p. 341 
the falcon \ariVf. impatiently- down nt its feci, whi 
to the perch by tlic jesses. 

tii volgt at grido: Thii may cither be that thi 
the falconer when he cries ".V4 ka! SaM»!" or, 
the cry o( (he bird ihat i» itb quarry, it luma : 
ejc in that dirtctiort. Ariotito {Orl. Fmr. xliit, ' 
small boat that moves with the rapidity of a fs 
the call of ila mantcT:— 

Cofi lanta fretta il aullil lec'io Tande, 
CI1C con maegiore a logoro nnn iccnde 
I'akiin ch' aierido del padfon rispondc." 
1 91 f>Totf«de : The falcon on bcinc roused by t 
of the falconer, or of Uie quarry, spreads out 
sIrtiRKlen to eiiciipc from the (euies that restrain il 
•^'t'at mi /tc' itr: Huti seek an atk);ory >n Dan 
of him»clf to the falcon. His contcmpUtinn of 
sctfinspcction of his affections, which have bee 
[the riifhteous amotint eif subtni»ion conducive 

ito xnc Rtaiings oh the Purf^atcrto. iig 

«a> I then, and such, no far as the rock is cleft to 
aSord a passage to him who would asceitd, di<l I 
taovc onwards to where the circling begins (i.e. up 
te the level pathway of th« Fifth Cornice). 

Tbc stairway's, Bcnvcnuto thinks, always mounted 
rtriifht up, and all the Cornices were circular 
ghoul Pur^tofy. 

lari [SimiUtuJitii Danttsche, Firenze, 1874, p. 
EdKer\-e3 that t>antc drew many bimiles from lite 
i;* and Ariosto and Pulcl later on followed in 
ihetstep^: for in the olden days of Chivalr>', Hawking 
Ftaotno mean place. 

Itivaim III. — The penance and purgation of the 

fAnricioos are now described. Benvenulo says that 

' ^'utc parses tbe Avaricious in the most perfect 

BUDcr. He represents them all lying on the ground 

*ith their bices to the earth and their backs turned 

it^nnh heaven, and with thdr hands and feet tied, 

|"(C{ing and bmcnting. What Dante represents is 

'Bphmcd a little further on. One must imagine 

thu he who wishes to purge himself from the sin of 

Aiaxice has to recollect and mourn over the life that 

hu wasted on earth. For if the Slothful man 

flhtuatfrom doing good through laziness, the Ava- 

'■Mas man does all manner of evil from wickedness : 

I tbe OiMM Commalia there an *\x or aeven references to 
of falconry. "If any phue nf animal rui^tcncc i« 
hy IMitte in a maitctly way, it is to be fouml in hiti 
^inatt* nt hawk* , fur he uiiilml<uid ihcm well, and puint<;fl ihctr 
fwiruta in a few entirely natuial attitaileih In his tiXMtincnt of 
ttii FonlT medtcval (hcinc Danic ii distiiicllv modern. Unc 
■Baoutvlr find more aeeuiHie ob*rr\'aiton in the uiperb pnenti 
d Leeoete de Listc." (DanU unJ /Ju Animal Kimgilom, by Dr. 
iUJiard Tbayvr Holbio»k, Sew York, iy>4, p. i^i.) 

Readings oh the Pttrgalorio. Canto xix, 

he turns his back on heax-en and worshipa the world ; 
he keeps his hands and feet bound, for he gives to no 
one, nor goes to any one's assistance, and is the most 
miserable of men. He is just like some animals ^vho 
will sacrifice, of their own accord, some part of their 
body to save their lives — the fox. for instance, has 
been known to bite off its own foot when caught in a 
trap. So does the Avaricious man expose his soul to 
manifest death, for the sake of acquiring or protecting 
a small modicum of money. 

Com' to ncl quinto giro fui dischiuno,*' 
Vidi genie pereua che pianf;ea,t 
Ciaccndo s terra tulta voltai in giueo.f 

Adhauit pavimento anima me.i,^ 

Senti' dir lor con bi alii Gospiri 
Che la parola appcna b' intended. 



* ml guiatir giro /ai Jiithiuiii : /if. became un-fthut into the fifth 
circle. Dnntc hud been, during hiH aiivcnt uf the stairway, shol 
in between the wall of rock on cilhci side. 

fgentt . . . dupimigta: These ure the ipiritKof the Avaricious 
or Mi(crl)-. In Puyg. xnii, 49 et itg. we shall find Statiui cxplidily 
telling Dante that he is among the Prodigals, and that both arc 
punished on this Cornice, (or their respective mtxuK^ft o[ inancy. 

llnlta wUa in fmo; Dean E'luinptrc obHcrvcH: 'An in Inf. \ii, 
7^,z6. the Mi<«TEand ?rndi);a1»arcer<iuped(ogclherB(> exhibiting 
different af-pecta of the name evil. On earth their looks, likethnw 
nr Milton's Maminnn (Air. /.luf, i, 6Si)hRVc been ever "dutvnwaid 
hcnt." and (heir penance is lo lie prostrate on the earth, uttciing 
the worda at Ptatm cxtx, xj. These words form pan of the service 
of Prime in the Roman Breviirj'. and it was at this hour that 
Dante heurd thetn in Purgatory. . . . We may al«n call lo mind 
the concluding words of the verse which begins: "My soul 
cIcAvelh unto the dust ; quicken Thou me according to Thy vronJ." 
Dean Itumptrc also notices the cnuncoueneis ol the addrexs 1 
Ihe spiritain v. 76: "Such should he the tone of c\TTy soul seehiii 
its own purihcaticin, towards others who are under a like disciplin 
for like sirtB;" , 

^Adkiftil favimeitli* anima mta: " E Uala inUitnU itl pavimmt 
F anima miaf Cost incomincia quel prcKo, che diccndo tosto di| 
Kainivami tumJo in lua panta, pon« in twi raflronlo le ricchc 

Ouitotix. Rtadings on the Purgatorio. 


AiUM ts I came forth into the Bflh Circle, I saw 
pvphnpon it that were weeping as they lay upon 
llc(ii»nd altogether lumed (&ce) downwards. AJ- 
Itoil^irioMnfo aaimn mta, J hc:ird them »ny with 
tti itep aighSi, thai one could hardly distinguish 

|Vii|iliiow addre!tse& the spirits, asking them to point 

[•« tke way, and one of them at once replies. This 

*piw ii evidently in doubt as to whether the Poets 

luflrr at all in this Circle, or whether they have 

into Purgatory by some special grace of God. 

jDunc, anxious for further information, by one of those 

"M ■ntcTchanges of signs so common m Italy, a^ks 

aD<abuin& Virgil's permission loconversc with this new 


-"Oeletii di Dio,» li cui ioffririi 

E puiiuis c ■pcfanjta Can men dari, 

Drixnle noi rtno ifii aiti Kaliri."— 
-'Se rot venttc dal giacer kivari, 

B volete trovar la via piCi toato, So 

It itm e ijaeUe del cieto : la morte c U vita dell' anima, la 
I M buao fndallo e la luce del Vcrfao divtrm. L' adtr- 
OMW eafthme acLonciamcnle U scdc del pcccaio, chc t 
vTifrOa, c Don j;ii nelU ricchctJia ; e iriKiemc accenna la quasi 
Minulc icjuKitit di qucir afTctlii. Aii'tuu^'thf [lain/i ivj parola 
<Aut fii bclU cbc trrra, sc ii nKuardi alia sua uriftinc ncl verba 
M"^,o laiftttan : chi vcranictitc cD»a<lc!;nad'c&GCrc calpe^tata 
'* tadcMoa qoc'cnntnti il icviroorc imicrnilcuorc." (Perez, 

\ti Ji I)i», e< iieq. : rtiobeni notices that every time 

' addfcwcit ihe %p<ril!> to Pirrgatniy, he <ioc» bo in unrd* 

^hsta laH n( eourlcs)' anil kindncts. alwayn with » thouKht of 

^'tMaav brkj {itr ihcni consoiation in their trial. 

*»*i»i tndudtn iL 7SJ : there were many aimilar words in 

Ihinic'* lime, now obnoletc, auch aa nmuri, aM.rtirritiri, 

We find them fretfacntly in Hoccactio. The«c are 

r'-u4^ Mib»taniitea foriord from the infinitives of itic vcrbn 

Ch^wv Cm*. IV, can/, iii. Lt doitt rimt d" iimot. Str. iv. II. 

" Per chc ■ inlelletii Mni 
E tnaaifeato i lor itri caacr vanL" 

"O yc elect of God, whose sufTerinl 
less hard by justice tind Kope, direct] 
a&ccnts on hixh (i.e. to Ihc stairway It 
next Cornice)," " If you conic exetiii>l 
to lie prostrate, Biid wish to find 
speedily, let your right hand be alwa 
Thus did the Poet make his request. a| 
answer come to us from a tittle in ou/ 
fore I by the voice discerned that oth| 
was) concealed; anil then I turned 
Lord : whereupon he with n cheerful si| 
to what my wistful countenance hud 

Aimed with Virgil's permission, Diinlc 
his name, the reason of the prostrate c* 
self and his cnmpanions in suffering, 
his good offices for him with his fricnc 

* di furi is for i(» /unri, atf tsitrmi. We mui 
if the INicts on rcuchinK the lop of the *tiurw 
rij^ht. aa they walked along the ncvr Cornice, 
would naturally be nearciti to the outer margin 

+ Sti p'trlare .tvvisai C allro ntutcUo : Torraca 
" Avriiai, intesi, colsi. nelle parole, cid chc c»i 
ildubbioe il ilcxiderio: Po»ibile che costoro 
marsi in aueBlo ecrchio ?— Dirigetcci alia sc«l 
giltn. P. I" spirilo aveva risposto [irontri : ' 
giaccr uicuh.' Cf- tn/- «, i^ 19." 
—Xvola eti oahi .- 

CantllL R€mdi$igi on the Purgatorio. 123 

Poi ch* io potci di mc tut a mio senna, 

Trtulmi Kopra quelU creitliir*,* 

h< cui parole pria notir mi Icnno, go 

DiceiMJo:— "Spino, m cui pianger rnitura t 

QacI scnxa il quale a Dio tornAr non puossi, 

Smu an pocd per me tua niaKf[i'>' cura.J 
Clii tout, c pcTcht vAlli avcte i doi»i 

Al tu, mi di'. c te vuoi ch' io t' impetri 93 

Ca«a di li and' io vivcndo mansi." 

Al ihea 1 was empowered to act according,' to my 
iotkutioa, I moved on (and stood) aver that being, 
«ta*t wotdb had first made me notice him, saying : 
"Spiru, in whom tears arc ripening thai (fruit of 
Rfcnltflcc) without which one cunnot return to God, 
Ur uidc for a while thy ^Ttater care for my iwike. 
Ttllne, who thou wasi, and why (nil oO )'ou have 
jmrlacks upturned, and whether thou wouldst hav« 
W oUun au|;hl fur thcc there whence 1 set forth 

fiancBOln priintx out that by theiie last word;; Dante 
■finctlj answers the implied question on the part of 
lieipirit (1 79), when he says: '" If you come exempted 
bw htrinj to lie prostrate.'* The whole scene reminds 
•^ id that described in tn/emo (Canto xix). where 

M tu^M ifM/Ua trt4ilurii : Bcnvcnuto inlcrptclii tliti in 

r-tia ■Bvarnishcd *cnu: : *^ 1 catnc and stood nvci thai being, 

Pope Adrian, because he. bcin^ on hlii (ate, could not 

ItoBc' Some Cominrnuinri attempt Io put far-fclchcd 

JoAs OB the paiujje. 

: GiobrTti prefer* Lombardi'i explanation of miitiim, 
, tffrrH*, iK'tlera," 

Ma •« ^,< f^t iiw tua magnior ttmt : " Qui tunt non val fontc 
iioic ki «uolc interpretarc : rna willrcitudinr unita 
• mhaicia. ad aff^nno, quale t qu«l[n dcRit spirit! 
•So itidica Io sIcmo v. 91 . B mi ftrmhrj the In iura 
n[iunto il fimngeft del v. 91. Intomo ul quul si^nifi- 
^v -■' V. Mipra Canto ix, v, 67, llcnchi fttric p»ua 

^^B >a cumunc; e chc ivi dica Dante m^ggiorcura 

^^^^.. ,i, ..HI » du«e vup. ii, i]i> il chc di inche buoa oenaD." 



Remtings oh the Purgatoria. Canto xix. 

Dante has been carried by Virgil to the place where 
the wicked Pope Nicholas Orsini is being punished, and 
stands over him like a friar confessing an assassin going 
to be buried alive.' \Vc have here one of those curious 
and felicitous contrasts of which Dante i& so fond- In 
Jn/. xix we read the storj' of a. wicked Pope. In Purg. 
xix is told the story of a good Pope. The speaker is 
Ottobuoni Kicschi, who was elected Pope as Adrian V, 
July 12, 1276. He died at V'iterbo on the 3rd of August 
the same year. Scstri and Chiavari (in the text Chiavf ri) 
are two towns of the Hastem Riviera, which were sub- 
ject to Genoa. The river is the Lavagna, whence th^l 
Ficschi family took their title. .Adrian died before his 
admission In the priesthood, and was therefore neither 
consecrated nor crowned as Pope. He had been sent 
by Innocent IV, in 1268. as a legate, to reconcile Henry 
III, King of England, and his barons, and to reforti 
abuses in the Church. Adrian was. Benvenuto tells ui 
a nephew of Innocent IV, and when his friends and 
relations amc 10 congratulate him on his election, hi 
is reported to have said : " It was better for you to haM 
a live Cardinal than a dead Pope." He only sat on tl 
throne of St. Peter one month and eight daysL Be 
vcnu to gives the date as 1273. Pope Adrian's spcechJ 
is one of the tine passages in the Purgatorio. He bcgin^ 
by notifying to Dante that his second question, as to 
the mode of their punishment, will be answered later, 
but meanwhile he tells him what had been his dignity, 

• Comptie Inf. %i%, 49, 50 : — 
ava come tl Traie C 
Lo pcrfido a»»Mss)n,'* etc 


o »uva come tl Traie Che confesui 

So, too, here hiis Unnle to stoop lo converse with 1hi» Fopt. 
Inf. m, Nicholas lelts him (vet. 6g) :— 

" Sappi iM io fui vestJIo del gran nianto." 

CxntaxiX. Readings on the Purgatorio. 


uid uliat Ihe place of his birth, how long he occupied 
ibe Pipol Throne, and the hardship he found it. 

BicKli » mc: — " Pcrchi I nostri ditetri 
Kiv-olKs il cicto a si, sapcai: ma prima, 
Siias qtioJ 'gojm laectuor Ptiri* 

Imn SicMri c Chiaveri ai adima loo 

Ir'na fiumana bella, e del suo notnc 
1^ litol del mio un^ue fa sua cima. t 

L'ft iimc e poco piu J prova' io come 

Pcsa il gran manto b chi dal Cango il guarda, 

Ckc piuRia s«mbran lulte 1' allre aome. 105 

Aid he to fne : "Why Heaven makes us turn our 
hxitiftu, tbou ihalt learn: but first know that i was 
ilKiiKOHsor of Peter. Between Sestri and Chiavari 

Hir, of Adrian V the FtUo Boitaetio reUlea; 
it tctnpo di sua vita non avca atUiKi ad iiltro cite 
(jprcunia c avere. per gtungcrc a quel punto d' ciM;re 
VI*-. mo che pflco il KOdetse: <t vej^Kienduai papa e nelia 
••OW Mpiona chc »i possa avcic, m ricoivobbe e parvci;li 
"s**! Mtralo nel magcior laccieta \ntf\ del nvondo, e cos] 
*■" ^"n avcne s govcrnarc e avcie cura dell' animc di tutta 

■ oatiiniei: e tKOKnutciutiMii i£ mcdeaimo Hpre|t;i6 1' avaruta 

■ tmiiiiihri villi." 

^f* M< fUM .* On thii Buti »aya : " cioi fa su4i altexxn : im- 
(™4* m&DC a quel grado d' altc r«a monlonno, che primn crano 
•■wmi qiKUi (Ul t-*inco ; pot (untiochiamaii conti di LavaKna." 
^W) IMktit, vol. ii, p. J49): "Ud cell CTC Adhano Papa V 
™tt i, d*' Conn di Lava^no : e quetio c ci6. che dice Dante al 
Mfc W(i propria; chc il titatn delia sua cnsn fa «ib cima del 
*MK4qa*l ftufnc ; ctu^ p's'i" " titolodaqucl fiumc, nc fa suo 
'■Pwaoarme. Ua pcrocchi queslo/nr imi <-tMti mi auona un 
'■UckeiT onofc {utmithingaJUr thtfoihton 0/ an honcuriib'l itiiliiu* 
^; *DtTk fofsc dire, che da La%'aKr>u(ula*ua Umi^liunobililata 
'iBl Mica." 

!C'a mut € fiat acq.: *• B appr«>«> lul a d) dodici di 
^ia fa cbiamato Papa mcascrc Otiobuong cardinale dal 
'vodilla vUti di Genova. il quale nun vivclic chc trcnianovc 
^■tlppalo,cfucbiainata papa Adriannquinto." (Gim. VilUmi, 
UvKcafL yo-) Compare Purg. xvi. i>7-t jg: — 
" Lb Chieu di Rama. 
Ptr confondcrc in bc due rc<Kiincntii 
Cade ncl (ango, c tt brutM c la soma." 


Rcadi'if^ on the Purgatorio. Canto xtx. 

there ruslies down a fair river, and from its name (La- 
vagna) the title of my race takes iis proudest distinc- 
tion. For one month ii-nA u httlc more I experienced 
how heavily the gicat mantle weighs on him who 
keeps it OJt of the mire (i.e. wears it with dignity), so 
much Ko that all other burdens seem but feathers. 

Pop« Adrian now goes on to show wl]ea and why 
reoogniscd the error of his ways. 

La mia convcnionc, ont^ 1 fu tarda; * 

Ma come fatto fui Koman Pastorc, 

Co»t Kcopersi la vita bugiarda. t 
Vidi chc ii non »i quciava il corc,l 

Ni pi& »a.lir potcasi j in tjuclla vita; tio 

* ctinvtruonf . . . l-tirJtt : Scartauin! thinks Adrian muM hiivc 
delayed his convvriti^n until after his election at P"pei and wr 
know that he wa» old when »o ducted, and only lived 3.S dayi 
afterwards. He should rightly therefore be still in Antc-rurgatory. 
VVaa he rescued therefrom by ncbteouK prayeia. or wa»hts penit- 
ence »o saintly as to wipe olTthc years that he Hhould have tan icd 
in Anle-Purgalorv? 

t/n vita bugitirM : GiobertJ tajrs " pcrchi prom eti it rice di cow 
Che noil ailcndc." Compare Conv. iv, la, 11. 39-50: " Promeltono 
Ic false traditrici, s-v ben ai guards, di torn; oRni scie c ogni man- 
canza, c appurlar laxiamento e baslun/a. B qu<:»ta fanno nel 
principio n ciaxcuno uomn, q»c»1a prominiionc In certa c|Uanlitl 
di loro SGcreHcimcnto afTcrmando; c poichi quivi aono adunatc, 
in toco di Knxiamento c di rcfrigcnn, dAnno e rccann aete di cuso 
febricante c intollef abile ; e in loco di bastan^a. recano nuovo 
tcrminc, c'loi maRitinr quantity a ilcsidcrio." Compare aUo I'i'f. 

>". ty, 'i*- 

Inpn ti ^ueiavti tt tort: "poichi intcrniinabili g,V\ umani dc' 
lidcrii, aconleniarc t quali solo basta una beRtitudmcintiniu..j 
una vita immortale." (Gioberti.) 

%Si ^m} idtlir fvitint: Hen^«^ulo constdcr> thia is very );< 
reasoning, for what ^ove^cign has such ttignity and power 
the Pope? Olhcm have to rule over mortat affairs; but 
over spiritual malters. Olhcr& ^tX their pre-eminence from inan| 
but he from the eanhlv wi«(!oni ol God. Others have power* 
earthly mallcn ; he has the freedom of eternal onei-, and indeed, 
as Ihev say, he is the ruler over both the hvin(; and the dead. 
Thcrcfoie there ncilhcr ia, nor can be anything greater in the 
whole Chnnltan wi>rld. allhouKh nowa-dayx that great ofhcc doei 
tiot accm to be highly esteemed. 

Cinlatn. Readmit on Ike Purgatorio. 


Per cbe di qacaU io mc s' acccK amorc. 
Ru a quel pnnto mUen c poriita 

Dk Din uniins fui, del lutto avjira : * 
Or, come vcdt, qui ne son punili. 

Uj caversion. nUs! was t.irdy: but, when I had 
kcooK tbe Roman PaMor {t,e. Pope), then I tlis- 
cntni bow ftAvt (human) life i». In ti ) found (liat 
tbe hail had oo cepo»e, nor wa& it pofisible to Hse 
hfVetm that life ; wherefore the desire Tor this (im- 
Mrtillire)was kindled in mc. Up to that time I 
W« wretched «oul, aod severed JVom God, wholly 
r<tatip 10 Avarice : now, as thou sccsl, 1 am pun- 
ubed far it here. 

BtDieouto says that Adrian speaks trtie, for the fol- 

b«n of Avarice are cut off froftt communion with 

(W; oor, indeed, is the Avaricious man satisfied by 

the gralt5catton of his desires. Bcnvcnulo tells in 

iilouruioD a stoiy of a. kinsman of this same Adrian. 

Thii WIS the head of the Fieschi. who was ihe richest 

of ■Ilchtirchmcn; he was appointed by the Emperor 

W^iph Vicar of the Empire, and the expense utterly 


In (be early days of the Christian Church the dig- 

of the Papacy was not one at all to be coveted, as 

!y*II Ihe early Pontiffs were drangcd off to cxccu- 

(■B aod martyrdom ; but now the dif^ity is sought 

ihiviib such ambition, that fraud, bribes and promises 

^abr|;e shun: in influencint; the election, That is 

Improbable explanation of Benvcnutu saying that now- 

l-4i}« the oAce is nut greatly esteemed ; it is coveted 

*AI IhU« Mwn*.* "wttotly avaricioott." dH Mt« is a regul&r 
i^V. mcanrtig "wholly, ■lto);<:<hrr-" Many of the Engtiah 
WwlaWma render it "coreious o( all," aa it it wtic "di tutto." 
D«. SlHdvdt {aam Provost o( Oriel College, Oxford), whose 
■oiraBci oi llabin are fulhlul and elcKani, tran»U(ct it 


ReadiMgi oh tJu Purgaiorio. Canto xt 

and intrigued for by churchmen ; and laymen, in con- 
sequence, hold the office in less respect from the elec- 
tion not being merely the result, as it used formerly to 
be, of the free choice of holy minded men, who had 
prayed to God to direct their selection without any 
thought of personal ambition for themselves. 

Adrian answers Dante's other question as to why he 
and other spirits are lying in that posture. 

Quei ch' avaruta fa,* qui si dichiara 

In purgation dell' *ninieconv«rM,t 


* ijuti ch' avaritM/a, el seq. : Perei (i>f. tit, p. 197) preface* 
paisage very happily: " Un UKfimcvolc c <lura cammino i quel 
di Dante tie) quinio ccrchio. PoiLhi tucto lo spiizo d copcrto 
eertc, che, stcss bacconc (lying ci tkur/aca), non luuria ■' picdT 
uel I'octa He non picclola. via Rccosto alU roccia. Uno di laro 
annunm con vivc patole la pcna, chc ci»i paf^ano per anltchv 
avantic . . . Avari/ia, che, sccoiido I' Aquinatc, c immvdcnto 
dcsidcrio di que' bcni il cui pre/io pu& misurarsi con moncta. ne' 
ucri libri h detta idnlatria ; e coilora npiano I' anttca idatairia 
prcMtrali alia terra, donde »i Irac I' oro c 1' argcnto. bomiKlkacn, 
ncl turmenlo ai Himontaci dcUa prima Canlica. Qticlli, ocpolli 
capo in terra e quasi prDpAgginati, chiamavano a mente il 
di Crinlo : Murtuui, tsl dives, et ttpnitin est in ittjerno {Lot. »vi, 
Vittg.t. QuGiti cottfrtti ad attiEar tcmpre il lunRo ove mal teno 
giaiono.diiamano u mcnte 1' altro di CiiHlu: SoliU l^iuiurtiart 
thti»U¥os in Una, tibi artigo rtlinta demolilur ; tt ubi /uris tffoJmnl, 
/urantur. Thetitttris*lt»iilfmti>bistHaaurotiiiCQiti>. {St.Matt. \i,i^ 
Vvlg.). Kammcntano anche gliavari e i prodiKhi del 4" ceichio 
infcrnalc. Li le ncchezxe mulavansi in pcsi fatico«i»i>imi, che i 
pcccBtnri liovcvanoco' lore pctli voltarc c aoipingerc in demo. 
Qui cite suno pes! invisibiti, chc SKfiravati honia il doriM) dc' ;'cm> 
tcati, non li tatcinno munvcrc findii non abbiano aoddihfalto a 
ogni debiio di K'U^'tUia-" 

t tontitrse: There seetnR to be much doubt amOHE Ibe Com- 
mcntatots an to whether this rcfcfs to the potilion of the penitent* 
h-ing turned over on their races, or lo their state of convciaion 
from impenitence to true contrition. Ccsari thinki the former, 
bat is not ceilain which nf the two interpretations ta the lieht 
one. "E da ordinure cost il con»trutto ; 'Nella purK&'ion qui 
dell' animc co>i rivctxalc, li dichiara qucllo chc ta, I' avaniia:' 
•c KiA (vnvtrse non valcasc, eoHV*ftiU a Die." {Bitktxt, vol. ii, 

bMoin. RfoJings on the Purgatorto. 129 

B ttnlia pcna tl m»nt« ha piii umara.* 
Si CORK r occhio noHro non a'adcrsct 

Itt alto, fiuo alle cmc terrene, 

C(»l lEiustisia qui a terra il mcnc. tso 

Came avaricia ipen&c a ctascun bene 

Lo nofttro amorc, ondc opcrar pcrdisi,! 

Ctwl giudi/ia qtii fttreiti Ji ne ti«ne 
Ne' pinli e n«ll« tnsn l«i;atii|e pr«si ; 

*i»li^« UmomUkapiH amara: The best intcrprctatian of 
^■vfllbr (iiiaful in Perez le^. ciV. p. lOij: "Ojini vcropeniienle, 
■Mn t indinato < credere il proprio fallo piu Krnvi: di oRni 
Uliltrui; c pcth sc f>li fovae impoiitii lal pcn« die i;li jjorKesBC 
gw t tnwinaa hcordaniR di quelle, ci;li dovrcbbc Kiudicar »ir> 
wptnapiiainaradiacnialtra. [,a pctm poi dd quinto ccichio 
^bipiidclle litre accdtnodatn a dar di conlinun aW anima 
MKnci poAtutc ilclla mcTnoiia: poich^ mentre ncglj altri ecr- 
ni'dMnaao andarc d iicilcre rapprctcnia piu o meno f;li olti 
■w titft contiaiia al vi^in ant>co, qwi invi.-«e il doloroto adcrirc 
•* Km c«l doaao nvolto al cielo rendc imapnc dello Mc^hu 
■■ni'iiie Bella raa parte piO rea c BConoAcente. Wa lasciata 
^ fanta raeion«, all* jitero e libcro petto di Oanlc potcva 
^*piaa pjA amara dt luttc qurlla chc piA sembra all' uoma 
^fmi) Ma diKmiA, c lei;atolf) quasi vile manctpio, dinici;ai|;li 
■lipra de' pfQpri alti. Forse per tal ragionc a chi pccci di 
■^^ e di avanjcia. \\i\ CflpitaltMinit e radice de^'i ultri, egli 
'■tfU « rtfita/ione un altc»;K>aincnti> (utto »civilc : la f;enle del 
^■•archio nppre«&a da gran pcsi ; la genie del qutnto Kravata 

'•fctir ; Adrrerrt u from a\i-fTigtT{, 

! aitft tttrmr frrJiu .- Scartaivini says this mint not be trans- 
■rf:*All oor work wa* lout, wm in vain," but ■* All o«r power, 
■Mthatt): W (ond works wa* losl." 

l*rtti-' Scartaannt advocates the joining of (JffKi writh irgdti, 
■ •adi I hate adopted- Mr thinks Untti h u«d adverbialty (or 

•J$ f mUt mam legal* : Compare Si. A/ii'f. mii, 13: "Then 
...L tmf In the t«rranta. Bind hlni hand and foot, and lake 
away, and cn>t hiin into outer darknna; there shall be 
,' aiul fnaahing of lectK" AiwJ Perci: "I lacci poi, the 
lamnit e maul e piedi alduraterreno: i lacci, a cui nella 
I ««n t<«taci>na!e le inai'ljc dcllc ricche/«e, bcrve cxprimono 
la r avaxo annodi »4 e allrui nell' acquiiitarle, le cure 
> HriMuuo ncl cUModirle, la pataiane da cui non pudstricanl 
Ctdiicvcr pur nnn vurri^belaMciHtk'. Mciilamcntcstanno 
I k Riani, chc ncl tacro cloquio ralhi^uraiiu Ic opcce, e cbe 


Readings on the Purgatorio. Canto xix. 

B quaoto fia piaccr del KioMo Sire,* u} 

Tanto »t«r«ini> iinniol»lite diKtesi."— 

What is the ciTcct of Avarice, is here made manifest 
in the purgalion of the convened souls, and the 
mountain hus no more bitter penalty. As our eyes, 
fixed on earthly things, were not lifted up on high, 
even so has justice sunk them to the ground in thin 
place. Even ns Avarice exlinj^uiKhcd our love for all 
thin({s good, wheieby our faculty for good works was 
lost, so justice here doth hold u3 in reatraint, fast 
bound and fettered by the hands and feet ; and for so 
long as it be the will of the Righteous Lord, so loop 
shall we remain motionless and stretched out." 

Divisioti IV. — Dant« now solves a point which 
always been a doubtful one to him, namely, whethc 
temporal dignity ceases with temporal death, 
pictures himself as having knelt down with the intentie 
of doing homage to the Pope's high office and was pr 
bably about to say, thinks Benvenuto: "Holy b'athe 
I entreat Your Holiness, to excuse my natural ijjnoraot 
for I was not aware of your being Pope." 

Benvenuto wishes us to take note that to no livil 
person among Christians is any greater reverence 
than to the Pope, even though be may be the vilest i 

co«1 a lunKofuri>nochiu)tc, COM rare s' atlaTKarono. Meritar 
nllacciali i pit.-di. chc figurano ^li nffetii e (lunxi i passi (:^>n 
I' animn caminina: i piedi, chc I' nvara nan move mat *' bii 
de' fratelli non diparte mai dalla ^Aidia dc' male amati tcs 
Sillatli vincoli aono convenient) simlMli del modo coit cui g}' 
Eiusti posicdilori a xi avvincolano i bcni e»tcrni." (F 
CfrcMi, p. IQ9-30O.) 

* qutinla fijt piae^r Jil giush Sin : It u-oald s«em from this lb 
that ihcic sjiiriis are in ignorance of how long they will hav« 
lie on the |;round. 

tiiDiHiibiJi: "L' immobility poi e 1' irrigidimcnto di tutli 
persona ci fa ricononccre U eondihonc dell' antma avara, a %t 
skI' "hri arida c dispietata: quel suo indurare, c quau non 
muovcrsi untaoo." (Pcccx, p. aoi.) 


Ift nx. Rtadingt tm the Purgalorio. 


«M vicious of men, and many think this is almost a 
nincle. Dante himself touched elegantly on this once 
M Verona, when, supping with some distinguished pcr- 
iBBvioinc one asked out of curiosity : " Why is it, most 
Idtned Dante, that a sailor who has suffered shipwreck 
CTcr pia to sea again : that a woman who has once 
b«nK3 child ever wishes to conceive again: and that 
nek thousands of poor do not swallow up the few rich ? " 
To mbtch the ver>' prudent Dante, fearing to furnish 
nnrtotbe least intelligent guests, e^'ading the qiiestiitn, 
Rplid; "Add a fourth question, Why do all the kintfit 
■■ipnnceiiof the earth reverently kiss the foot of the 
wait t barber and washerwoman when he ia made 
Pape?" Although Dante had not yet spoken, he may 
trt uttered iome sound of his voice or his throat prc- 
pta\arf to doing so, and Pope Adrian perceives that 
uuitebis stooped nearer to him. He asks the reason, 
Hd, to bearing from Dante that it is out of reverence 
fcr bit dignity on earth, hastily bids bim to rise up on 
^bit,uid to treat him as an equal. 

Ohknc. Dante now addresses llie Pope with the 
'nontial "dm," whereas before, he had spoken to 
tevtlb the more colloquial " £h." Sec I- gi.W seq. 

lo m' ttM inginocchiato, c voica dire ; 

Ma com' io CMninciat, ed ei ■' nccarsc, 
Soki AKoltJinda, del mjo riverjr* :* 

*At Ike end of hit convcrution with Pope Nicholu, Dunlc 
^■iiiifUl inta % reproach againit ih« tvirlce of the PisiofS 
■Ml&gfcii. Al the end of hi« interview witK this Pope, alao 
Hiaoc« Cor avincc. he humbly bcnA* the knee to do 
tsha tuKli ifignitj. And even in /•)/. xix, vcr. lOo, while 
nh that were Mxncwhal forcible, he uyi :— 
E w mm Imm. cbe ancnr Id mi vieia 
Lj nrcreiua dellc tominc irhiavi, 
Che lu lenckli nclla vita licta, 
r mcrd parole ancor piii gravi," ftc. 
I 3 


Reaiingi on the Pttrgatorio. Canto \ix. 

—•' Qoal cagioo,"— diBBc,— ■' in gfi c«l tl tone ? "— i 

Hd in k lui : — ■* Per vostn dignitate 
Mis coscfcnza dritto mi rimorw." * — 

— " llTuxt le gambe, livati su, frate,"— 

Kispoac :— " non crrw, cooscrvo t Bono 

Teca c con gli altri ad una potcttBte. i 

I had fallen on my knees, and was about to speak; 
but .IS ] be);an, only by listening he became aware of 
my iict of reverence. " What cause,'' said he, "has 
thus bent Ihcc downward ?" And I to him : '* Because 
of your mnk my conscicnc« rightly gave mc com- 
ptinctton (for standing)." " Straighten thy legs, my 
brother, iisc up," he iinswcrcd: "Err not, 1 am a 
fellow secvant with thee and others to one Power. 

Adrian had learnt the lesson of Acts x, 26 ; Rtv. 
10, xxii, 9. 

Another token of humility is that, instead of u&tB 
the usual formula of a Pope, who addresses others i 

•Mill fiuciyiiiii drillo mi rimonr : I follow Lombard! 
Witle in reading dhtlo and in interpreting it " rightly/' "jtirt* 
Some, amnnK vhoin is Bixgiuli, read mia ttaciritta tUiii 
Thia would in Dante's mouth ill befit the stAlc of humility 
which he hae been schooling himiiclf since cntcnng into 

icoiiurvo wiw Tita: Benvenuto say«: "These words 
taken out nf the xviiith chapter of (he Atotafj-pu (xi^'h 
A.V.) wherv, when St. John hid c»kI himiielf at the feet of I 
Angel, it wa» md to him: 'Sec thou do il not: I an) thy fella 
Kcnant and of thy brethren who have the testimony of Jec 
worship God.' And notice how Adrian bnne» forward an 
ccllent evHinpIc from a most excellent book of Holy Scripti 
for, if it be lawful tn make a comparison nfiiuch a nature, DaaC 
a man of u highly speculative nature, can be compared 
St. John, who was of a most contemplative nature, for 
Danic and St. John, although in difTerent manners, while 
rap\ testacy of the mind, saw wonderful and various Jmagcril 
Ab then St. John had knelt si the feet of the An);el, so 
Danlc kneel at the tcct of the great High i'ricst; and as 
.Angel did not accept this honour, calling him^clf the fello 
aervant of St. John, and of all them that had the tentimonyi 
Jcsu6, so did I*ope Adrian now, calling himself the fell 
servant uf Dante, and all other Christian men." 

Cuilo MX. KtaJings on Uu Purgalon'o. 


"my «oa," he speaks to Dante as a brother. Adrian 
canfirms his «'onls by adding testimony from Hoty 

Se fflai quel santo evuigelico budtm 
Che dice Mtiftu BiAeMi* intendesti, 
B«n puoi veder p«rch' io coai raKiono. 

If ever thoo haul rightly understood those words from 
ihc Holy Gospel, which say N«/ut Mubfiit (ihcy 
neithef mAtty) well wilt thou be able to perceive why 
1 (peak thus. 

Uiiu DOW dismisses Oante with a hint that their 
imha convcnalton would interrupt the godly sorrow 
viih which he is cxpiatinK the sin of Avarice. But 
bchu not up la now answered Dante's third queslion, 
■» to whether he wishes Dante to get intercessions 
oBendup for htm on earth. He tells him that, of all 
hi» kirafolk on earth, the only one left is his niece 
HiAhuu Alalia, the wife of MoroCllo Malaspina, 
WirthMc di Giovagallo. He says that she is as ytt 
* viriDous woman, but that he is not without fears 
^ the noiorious immorality of the Fic&chi lamily 
tiy eventually corrupt her. 

Vtltriu onai ;t non vo* chc piil t' Arrc»ti, 
CU U tVM ■Uinfm tnio pian)[cr diiagia. 


'^T* u^««(. Tor in live tenunectiOD Ihey ncllbcr mftrry 
M m pnn in mamier. tmt Brc as ihc ungeis of God in 
h>m" Si Vtfli. rxii, ju.) Danie umk thne w-ordi In nn 
Apriul *«ti*c. In »linw ibki earthly dklintlianft 60 nol exiil 

.'■wi ; Compare Uarcu Lombarda's (arcwell wonU, 

'Ua va' Am Toico, nmai, ch' or mi dtletia 
Trop]to di pturiKct f'lii chr di purUte, 
Si n' ba ontra raKion la mcnto atrctta." 


Readings on the Purgatorio. Canto xil 

Col qnaJ maturo * c'A che tti dkcstL 
Nepote ho io di 111 cb' ha nome AUieiJut 
BuoRt dc ti, pur chc la noaln casa 
Nnn CiiccKt lei per escmplo malvsgia i| 
E qucsla sola di U m* i riinasa." — 

tiovi go tliy way; for I will not have thee tsrry 
longer. Iiecauae thy stay here im|>cdeH my weeping, 
with which I bring to perfection that which thou hast 
said (i.f. my repentance). Yonder on earth I have 
a niece who is named Alngia, good in herself, if 
indeed our hou&e do not by its evil example make 
her wicked; nnd the alone ia left to me yonder (i 
the world}." 



*mthmi: See 1. 91. in which Dante had aatd to Pofx 
Adrian: — 

Spirlo, in cm piari;cr matura 
Quel Kcnza il quale a Dio loinar non putMai." _ 

iAIagim: As wc read in the supplemental note at the end 1 
Pttrg. viii, there ia not alwaya Absolute cedainty as to tiii 
identity of the various Marquises <>f Mulaiipinu, bui Aia^i 
woulit seem to have been the wife of MoiDetlo, Marchcse d 
Oiovai^allo, and to have borne him ihrcc children, Manfred) 
Luchtnti, and Fiexca. She waa the dnuKhtcr oT NiccoIA d 
Tedi&io di Ugonc de' Picschi. and Benvenuto says of her 
"Mullum complacuit Danli." The Anon. Fiortat. writes of her 
"Bbbe nomc le grnn donnn di K*"'" valnrc el <li gran bonii; ct 
I' Auttorc, chc alette piii tempo in LuniKUKia con questo Uo 
rocllo dc' Malcspini. conobbc quesia donna, et viddc che con 
tmuAtncnte faceva t;ran limoEine. et facea dire mesiie et oraaioo 
divotamcnle per qucsio *uo /io." 

', f^r tumfito malvdgia : " Malvufji chtumu poi i Fieitchi, pet 
bocca d' uno di lore, e tra tutii. non fa eccc/icncchc per uni 
donna di [[ueala cata, la quale fu mo^lie d' un Ualacpina 
mcmore Krnliludine dell' otpile. piO forse ehc giudi^io seven 
di storico: o. sc anche giudiaio imparxlule ccrto mcnviom 
attidionamcnte ccrcnla per ricordt pcr*onali can al I'octa.' 
Barliili {Storia della LttUratura ltaii«m», \ei. vi, part ii, p. 134). 


CuitiiXE. fteadiag% on the Purgatoria. 135 



Ix Ik lut Canio Danle dealt f>enerally with the 
pcnaacc and purgation of the Avaiicious. He now 
tnciies hi$ readers that this sin of Avarice, 30 com- 
noB ujcvil of the human race, may be avoided in two 

finf, by considcrinf; the good effects of Liberality 

aod Voluntar)' Poverty, and 
StcanHy, by coniiidering the evil effects of Avai'icc 
and Cupidity. 
Bmcnato dividn the Canto into four pans, 
i*bnui<M I, from ver. i to ver. 33, Dante expresses 
^ UinA of Avarice, " kmtiliUr imurgit contra avariliam 
■fiaiH jfmt " (Benvenuto). Dante then commends 

h &in»Mi II. from ver. 34 to ver. 96, the spirit of 
B^ Capet is introduced, himself avaricious, and (he 
kadef a Innic line of avariciotis perttonFi. 

ft I>mai-m III, from ver. 97 to ver. 123. Hugh 
t»9tt. with marked brevity, runs over a number of 
•toKxs nf the sins of many avaricious men. 
htknntm IV. from ver. :24 to ver. 151. Danle de- 




136 Readings m Iht Purgatorio. Canto XX. 

scribes a wonderful phenomenon that took place, 
namely the shaking of the Mountain of Purgatory, 
and a simultaneous outburst of all the spirits into a 
song of Gloria in Excelsti Deo. 

Divi^iw I. — The Canto opens with a short con- 
tinuation of the closing scene of the last Canto. 
Dante begins by saying thai, atthouKh he was ubitged 
to y\c\A to the command of Adrian to pa&s on. yet 
he did so unsatiKftcd, as there wet's many thin^ he 
would have liked to ask him, but could not. He 
therefore, in Virgil's company, continues his progress 
round the Cornice, but the Poets have to do so by 
stepping between the rocky cltfT-wall and the recum- 
bent spirits who are lying so close to the edge of tlie 
precipice, that they cannot get near it. 

Contra migliot voter vnlcr mal pugna ;* 
Ofulc contra II placer mto, per puicerl(,f 
Trani dell' acqua non laxia la sfiugnauf 


*CoR(ra Migiior voter vokr mat punn* : The will of Dantr, 
which prompted him to stny and seek further informalion, was 
unable to rt-iiisl the more powerful will of Pope Adriun, who 
w)>hcd to rclurn t« hU pcnnncc, and ihcrcfnrc gi^c nanle an 
order to leave liiiii, winch wm too dcci»ive to Ik ditmbcycd. 
Nol only wan AdriHn'ti the ulroriKiT will hut it wa» a belter will 
than l>anie"s, ina^tnuch as Adrian's desire wua a holy one, in 
witttint: 'o fulfil i'lai'* ordinances ns completely as lay in hia 

HI piactr mio, ftr fiaurli : In Huutinc* ■"■ "" If/tmv, and cd. 
vol. i, p. .|>f<, in the rootnolc, I have quoted thi« anioni; a nunt- 
hcr of ftimilnr patsBEc*. which in Rtane't opinion lead one lo 
the cunctuHion ihal Dante anmcwhai rclifthod tuch-likc play of 
word> as tviff . , . tfoUr, and fUuer mio p<r fiactrli. 

ITnxii ... Ill i^ugaa: Diintc dn>cnt>es hii unaalitified dc- 
aire (or infomialion an mcmbliiiK a ipnngc which, taken out 
of the water trw boob, is not fully saturated. Compare axi. i u- 

" La sctc natural ch« mai non vdiio," et »eq. 
'^Mnlc alao c<rm[>Hrc8 infomtiition incompletely recounied, to 

Ileidni; e il Duu inui li ihomc per li 
Lochi Rpediti * pur lunga |a roccu, 
Comcai v« ;»cr murot strcuoj ai mcrii; 

CM U gcnlc, che fondr a goccia a goccia 

Per K'i occhi il mx\ chc tutto il monili) occ&pa.lj 
Pair iltra parte in fuof lr(ipp» «' nppr(]ccia4l 

Ag»inHt ■ will that is better the will strives in vain ; 
therefore lo please him (Pope Adrian), a^iinst my 
Own pleaanre 1 wilhdicw fmni ihc water tny sponge 
{i^. my desire for mforir.Btion) not lillctl. I moved 
on; and my Leader moved on over the spaces !eft 
vacant aloag the clifT-nidc, as on a wiill one wiilks 
doae up lo the batilcmenia: because those people 

Ithe ipiriii'i, who drop by drop pour forth thmuifh 

iheir eyes tJie ill which pervades all the worM {i.e. 

Avarice or Cupidit>'), approach too near to the outer 

ede* ea the side (of the Cornice). 

Benvenuto observes that Avarice carries its own pun- 
ahtncnt with it, costing a vast amount of toil and tears. 

Ita ifaottlc of a loom ikil Ku not been drawn right up to the 
keal. Sec Ptr. iiv 94-96 :— 

"Cftd he' in ettn nito ecnn pnrola. 

i'er apprcndcr da Id q»al (u In tcl<i 
Ondc non iijim: inlino a co' la ipola." 
*larii ifitdih ; SftJitt here i't cquivfilcnl In tun tmffJili,tibfri, 
aad TamiMWn explains ihc wordti : "dove tXMi erano animc di 
fBt"*! AnUac > una." 

*f«*ar». !!■, liii- is to be underatood the wall of a media:- 
^M>. etiii ha [noiway ran, m» that one emild walk 

Nut an odfcctirt with the siKxilication of "narrow," 

luMf /*« t«rto 1/ wcmJo occiiNi; In /it/, vi, 74-75, Dante 
Avtnce, Ihr nn alluded tn here, in company with 
Ml E' ".; all licart* in I'U^ence:— 

*' i.tia cd avan/iA >i>nt> 

Lt Ii c UmIIl [he hanitu i curl acccsi." 
,'fnmi : ior »* apfroniMu. Tommu»6o «e» an allegory 
- ■* iiricitma apirita lyuiR ta near llic edge of the precipice, 
•iWfciiiin U^t *h*ir p(otille«a life brine* them very clo« 
* tnA i m AoatriKtion. 


Rtadings OH the Purgaiorio. Canto xx. 

So unhappy itt the covetous man, that whatever be_ 
fails to get hold of, he esteems a great calamity. 

Danle now slcmly inveighs against Avarice, whi( 
he likens to a slic-wolf, and implores the aid of Heavt 
against so ferocious a wild beast, and again, as in h 
i, 99-101, invokes the advent of that mysterious 
sonagc who is to put her to flight. 

M»ledclta nic tu, antica * iupft, 

Che piCi chc tutte I' attrc bealic hai preda,^ 

PcT la lua Tanic senca fine cupa I ] 
O cici, ncl cui girar § par chc ei crcda 

Le condizion di quaggiu trasmutarsi. 

QuADdo vcrrft per cui qucita discctU t 

*ii(tf(V<i.' The lusting after illusive benefits Bcduccd our 

faicnts in (he Gatden of Bdcn. Avarice and Cupidity ihcr 
nrc arc ax <il<l as the wurld itkcir, or at nil event* ax old la Man. 
fpii etu lulu , . . In»i ftreda T St. Paul (i Tim. vi. lo) aayi 
that the love of money ii the root ^ all evil. Compare Si. 
Thoni. Aquin. Sntnm. /*«>/, par« ii, 2*', i\o. Iv, art. 8 : " Pr««- 
cipui aiMctn inter aliaii virtiitcn morales uiuw rationis rcclic apparct 
in justitid, qua" est in afipetiiu rationali. £t ided ubus ralionis 
indebitui etiam maximi appar«1 in vitiia Appoiitis juititta ; 
Opponitur aulcm ip>i maxinif avaiicia. Bt idcA prxdicta vttia 
maximi tx avuritiA oriunlur." 

{(M/d: Cufo is more generally known aa signiWing "dark." 
but the word is quite as much used ax meaning "deep, hoiiam- 
lc%s, boundkos," nnd therefore "dark because deep." Cfldinare 
Par. iii, laz'iaj, where Piccarda de' Donati in deacribco a^ 
fading rrom Dante's view, a> something heavy sinking tit 
water :— 

"c eantando vanlo 
Come per ncqua cupa com Krai.-e." 
Compare also Tasso, Qtr. l.ibtr. x, si. a: — 

"Delia sua cupa fame anca non aaxio," 
Ciifti there means " innalinble." 

5 O ciil, ntl eat girir. ct seq.: Compare Pur/. Kvi, 67 et 
and Onr. ii, 14, II. iy-jfi: " <|uanto alls prima pcrfcjciiine. cic 
della Kcftera/ione su^tanKiate, tutti Ii Alosofi concordant chel 
cicli sono GHKionei av>-cgnachi diversamcnte qucito ponKano] 
quali dai motori . . . quali da csm mcIIc . . . e quah da vtr 
celeslinle, chc i net ealore naturalc del seme." 

Canton. R/adimfft on tfu Purgalorio. 


Atcunerf be thou, O ancient She-Woir, that more 
tltuaH ihe other beusts haai pre^', by leason of thy 
giml unbthomablc in ita depth. O Kcaven, in 
tduw revolving courses some appear to think con- 
oMas here below are changc<l, when will he come 
bywhiin ahe (the wolf, Avarice) will be put to Sight ? 

Scartuhni says that this passage is most important, 

B*y, even decisive for the true understanding; of the 

fanduncntal idea of the Divina Commedla. For if the 

biftM which Dante speaks here is the same that he 

tpDJECor in Inf. i, and if the Wolf that he curses here 

• Avirjcc, it follows of necessity thai the Wolf in Inf. 

\,tas only be a symbol of Avarice. .And if there the 

WoKiithe symbol of a vice, it also follows of necessity 

Ikttfee other two wild beasts, the tonsa and the leone, 

■Ht each also symbolize a vice and not some political 

p««ti; There can be no doubt that the Wolf here 

ctincd by Dante is the identical one that opposed htm 

at tbe commencement of his journey. In this passage 

tbe Wcrif is iitylcd antka: in Inf. i, lil, it is the ^mna 

mmiU, which at the beginning of the world Satan 

CalU (oTih froni Hell, and therefore it is as ancient as 

tk world. In Inf. i, 51. the Wolf, ft' giit viver graiiK 

■A /mil; the Poet curses the one here because ha 

ffit fii the tuUe I' ttltre Wslu, and becauae it makes 

tbepFoilents in this Cornice viver gtame, who are molU 

|aft. Id both pa'isages is its ravenous hunger mentioned. 

RaHy, Dante concludes his malediction of the Wolf by 

' ttriiiming : Quando verra per cut tfucsia liixtdu .' And 

ibl other motive can he have had for thus cxpress- 

'*- *■< impatience, but that Virgil had prophesied to 

-/. i. loi. loa). eke il reitro vtrra cht Itx JarH morir 

m^agltt? Dante makes use of the same word, verri, 

W hath. Therefore, the two wolves are one and the 


Readings on ikt Pitrgalcrio. Canto xx. 

ssme. The Wolf in this Cornice is cursed by Dante 
for being tlic cause of the torments of the Avaricious, 
and tliercfore the Wolf is Avarice, and consequently 
the Wolf, in Inf. i, is also certainly a figure of Avarice. 
Ab Uantc picks his way among these prostrate 
Rpirils, who arc lamenlinf^ and weeping aloud in their 
godly penitence, lie hears one of them* adducing 
examples nf voluntary poverty and liberality, which 
arc the virtues most opposed to Avarice. 

Noi andd.vam con pasti tcnti c scttrsi, 
Ed io attcnio nil' ombic ch* Jo scntia 
PictOKAmente pi>nf;crc c laf;niLr«i : 

B per \xntura udi':t— "Dolce Maria":— 
Dinaixi a noi chiamar cub! nel pjanto, 

*Th« npirit that speakH in not that of A'iif Huch Capet, but 
thMt of hU fatlier, Hugh Cupct. Diittc <>r Frtincc and Count of 
I'ari!!, better known as Hu^h the Great. Hut, as will be seen at 
different points further on, Dante e\-idciitly ahiTia his allusions 
from one to the other in a vraylhat in vef>' cuiiruKinK. Pasquicr. in 
hiK Rtcherche-i dt la l-mittt, p. 451. describes him a« both valiant 
and prudent, iinil says ihut, alihoui;h he was never V\n%, ycl was 
he a maker and unmakcr of kingii. He died in 956. Hia name 
in ttaid to have been more aLcuralcly Huon Chapet, snmc say, 
because when at school he was always pullinR off o4her little 
boys' caps. Ducani;e, Ci<»i. under Caf^tut. repeats this atoryj 
from an old chronicle, but ascribes the name, with more pfd 
babiliiy, to the hood or cowl which Hugh wat in the habit 

\ ftr mutura uiH' : " Non imagini voci rvcote da fuori. in- 
scKoano In mrdila/ione a questc animc ; ma proslcnc c chiusc 
In ft, eomc le vcilcmmo, pritpongonu a si nu-dcaimc t tipi da 
Ricditnrc. c nclla mcditazionc eptanto v' inriummnno, chc pi 
vcKiiono c odono i ficrsonaggi incditaii. e con essi parUnda 
bcncdtennn dumnle il giofnn in dolci parole a' buoni e nella 
nolle iiiuledicund u' fei- Con) loU' aurora u vien rinlreacando 
I' amoroKo xcnlimenln dclla virlii, e col Bor);cr dell' ombre crcacej 
I' nrmrc al vi^io: nclla luce del k>°'''^o conicmplasi il tfcnt 
c k' Hicende nclle lielc spcranic; trail bujo dcllu notte I' animl 
i Bopraffalla dall' aspelto del male, c si chiiide piCi addcntro : 
dolore." (Perej!, / Sttle Ctrchi, p. am.) 

^to JOE. Readings oh the PurgaUiria. 


V titer 

C«cnc f» doniu chc in pattotir sia ; * 
E K«uita.r :— " Povera fosji tanto, 

Quanto vedcr ni puo pcrqucti' o*puio,1' 
Ovc sponcatj il luo portaio a«nio."— 

iVith slow and measured steps wc went alon^, and I 
titcntivc to the shades thst I could hear weeping 
pitcously and laineniing: and by chance I hcatd : 
" blessed Mary,"I cried out in front of us amidst 
the vrailing. even as a woman does whu ia m labour ; 
ud, in continuance : " How poor thou wast can well 
ht seen by that (lowly) hostelry, where thou didst lay 
down thy sacred burden." 

Aad for fear, sa>'s Hcnvenuto, thai anyone might 
Hi: Ah! but it is not everyone who could endure 
tbt inconveniences of poverty like the Virgin Mary, 
I>Jnie brings forward another example of sober poverty 
in J virtuous heathen, Fabricius Caius Luscinus, whose 
"Me life was a protest against forced of gain. When 
■C was censor he had banished I'. Cornelius KuGnus 
fcrhisloxur^' and prodigality. He refused the pfts 
■And him by the Samnites, and the bribes of Pyrrhus, 

•C»« /« donm tht in pnrtorir sia : Venturi {SimilituJini 
'hfnrJlr, Sintit. $04, p. 176; ciclaima upon the beauty nnd 
4CKK nf ihts simile; for in the spirits a( ilie Avaricious the 
^fMAcy of their Rtirf i$ cumpen^utcd by the ^.aored joy of a 
WM^ that i« y«t alarAlT; even an il la with a uoman in hct 
■Kict hrui, ffom the chatic thought of bccotning a niutlicr. 
Cwpui St. jOilH XA-i. II. 

*(atf mpnio: The stable at Bethlehem where the Blessed 
^fjir. bi,! .luf Lord in a manner. 

aoji observes ihat the finst wnriis of benciliclion 

- J to Mary, blcMcd, though of low estate, m the 

- of refuse in which she gives birth to jcniu. And 
^ I <\ piteoutly iiKba, ut he lie^ face downwards on the 

Cnuii(l,aa4 irbocalU upon KiiiK>nr><l Qocena to (all down in rever- 
*)K« before the lo«ty cot where Ihc: Quc'cn of Angels ntfcm to Man 
*t newhf born Kini[ of the L'nivcr**. this spirit was one o( the rich 
atncnty upon earth, Hugh (Japci. of France the prtifccnilor tt 
Mtof the most illuUrious ro>-al houws in the world. 


Rtadings oh the Pnrgntorio. Canto xx. 

and died so poor that he had to be buried at the public 

expense, and the Romans were obliged to give a dowry 
to his daughters, Virgi! (AimiJ, vi, 844), calls hira 
" powerful in poverty." Dante extols him in tl 
Convivio, iv, 5. 

Scguentemente intesi: — "O b«oo Kabbrixio.* 
Con povcrti volcali aiiiri virtute, 
Clic gran ricthczia posscdcr con viMO,"— 

Thetc-afler heard I: "O good Fabrkius, thou didst 
chnosc virtue wilh poverty, rather than to possess 
great wealth with wickedness." 

Dante probably had reason to hope that he fntfli 
with this spirit enter into a profitable conversatic 
which would not be so abruptly broken off as the la 
one had been with Adrian. Hugh Capet at once pro- 
ceeds to tell Dante a story of the noble liberality of St, 
Nicholas, Bishop of Myra in Lycia, whose body is 
entombed at Kari. Of him Bcnvcnmoobscn'cs: "Here 
the Poet brings forward an example of noble generosity 
in a few short clear words; how the holy Nicholas, 
having lost his parents, wished to spend his money 

*Fabb*;xio: Compare Conn. iv. 5, 11. 107-110: "E chi dii 
chc foHsc Kenza divlna spiTuiionCj Fabttzio infinitn quaii molt 
dine d' oro rifiutarc, per non voierc abbnndonarc sua pniria ^ 
And Oi Mon. it, 5, I. 90: " Nunnc h'abnciu.H aliiitn nobii dci 
(xcmplum avariliiicr resiKtcndi, c]iium pauper cxistcns. pro tide q 
KcipublicK ten«biitur auri grundtr pondus ofalatum dcriut, 
dcritium. verba libi ttnnvcnicniia fundccu, dcspexit M rcfulAvit 
Huius ctiaiYi memotiam conlinniivil Poeia noslei in Kxto rViqj. 
/iw. vi, S44'0, cum canerct ' parvaquc poientcm Fabridutn.' " 
And Petrarch, Trionfo dttla Puma. cap. i. im. 19:— 
*" L'n Curia <d tin Fabriiio, a*)ifti piii belli 
Con In lor pnvertli. cite Mid* o CrRSbo 

Con r oro, ond" a virtu furon ribe)|i.*' 

I note that in the Dimnt Citmmedia D«mc spells Pai/Miio with 
two b't, and in the Coivivio with only one ; tiul this may Ik onl] 
the mistake of a copytM. 

^Vint- , 


Canlo a. ReadtHgi on the Purgaioria. 


tbepoor. There was a nobleman with three grown-up 
(Uu^bten, who was reduced to such extreme poverty 
thil he bad determined to send them out to beg for ihe 
a|port«f the family. Onenight.St. Nicholas, passing 
thebwte, took a bag of gold from under his cloak and 
tin* it in at the window. The eldest girl was thus 

I wratiej. and as all three were beautiful ^Hr, was at 
naiurned. St. Nicholas repeated this a second and 
I ttird time, with short intervals between, and thus 

iMorodforall three daughters honourable marriages. 
I'm long after ihe marriage of llie youngest girl, the 
btbcraacertained who was their benefactor." 

QacMc parole m' «ran si piactutc * 

Ch' ta mi irasii allre per aver contezza t 
Oi quelle tpirto, ondc parean venule 

tan parlava ancor della larghezia 
Cbe fecc NJccoUo { allc pulcclle, 
Per condarrr ad ooor lor giovioetni. 


'?«*«< /«f»fc m* eran »' fiiuiaU : Polctlo In hu Cofnmcntaijr 
*** mh»l ihcae word* i|)oken hy the ipirit in ]irai»e of poverty 
*^kqailt in accordance wilh the feelings of t'anic, tlic un- 
"fp ajfc, «h« in hit letter to Can (ii ancle della Scala iHp. x, 
i^*fc>*ej) MTotc: " Llrnct cnim rne r«i familiam an^uatia, lit 
■■(t il(i uiUa Tctpabticv dcrclmqu<rre oportcat ; " who wrote 
^wCmMiof Ki>mcna<inlhc n^iificii, ol*ij>(>eclc(lnulhi:nlicity, 
^fflj l: 'occncKltKcntiantvcmKralituihimctcnuil, Bc<l inopina 
^^nu qium fccil cxrlium," Dante very frequfnily sang the 
J^Btf lioruct poveny. aa well ai the evil*, both private and 

. '^aavwallmrt fii futllo tfirto : In the Viiivwio 44tU Lingua 
!f^'^ nmemmmU compUaio da NiccntA Tommaaio c Bernardo 
''mt, Torino, a. d. (and which will be alluded to in these pages, 
^IV CfMB Duiuurio), 4 vuK in H. ^to. I find under conltxM: 
J'^tmlatm, conovcere, etscr tnformato." Compare furg. juiiv, 

'□k piu parca di mc voter (lotnc read avtr) cootcxica." 

In the Briviarimm Homamum (6 I^cccmbet j we find: 

parrnlibui orbatua, facultate* kiia« pauperibus dis- 

CnimtilMl insigoe art Chri»t>ana« l>enigniutia cxcmplum. 


ReaJings on the Purgatorw. Canto xx. 

These words wrcre so pleasing to me that 1 moved 
a little Carthcr on, to get knowledge of that spirit. 
horn whom they seemed to come. He went on to 
^pcalt of the liberality thut Nicholas showed to the 
three damsels, so a^ lo guide their young life to 

Dixnsion II. — Danle, finding that all the other spirit 
on this Cornice are silent, and that that of Hugh Ca[ 
alone has spoken, asks him who he is, who brings bac 
(o Dante's rccoUcction these bcautirul instances fr 
sacred and profane history of voluntary poverty 
open-hnnded liberality. Dante offers, as a return 
such information lo speak a good word for hisi%putati< 
and enlist the intercessions of his surviving descendant 

— " O antniB ch« tanio ben favcllc* 

Dimmi chi fosli,"— dissi,— " c pctxhi sola 
In qucitc dc^c lode rinnovellc ? 
Nun fia xnza mcrci la tua parola, 

S' io rilomo t a compter la cHmmin corto 
Dt quclla rita che al termine vola."— 

quod, cum cju* civiK egciui tres fitia* nubile* in raatrimnnio colh 
care non posset, cariiin<)uc pudiciliam proMttucrc coKitaret, i 
COgnita. NicoUus noctu per fencMram tantum pccunis- in cji 
doinum injectt quantum unius doti satis cssvt : quod cnm item 
ct t*rtio IccisMt, tren illae virffincs tioncfttis viris in m«trinioniu 
dut«e Hunt." See aUo St. Thoni. Aquin. Summ. TktoL [>ani. ii, . 
qu. IW7, art 3. 

*latUo bin /avtIU: Fraticelli (tSG4\ followed by Tommai 
(1S69), and Scartaz;iint (1S75), iaof opinion that b^i must b« tali 
bere aa a subilanlivc, not as an advrrb. and b<gt one to cotnf 
11. 131-1x4. "f tlii* Canto : — 

" Petb 81 iKn chc il dl ci «i ragiona, 

DianjEi non er* io aal ; mai qui da pfesio 
Non aUnva la voce altra persona." 
In the Grttn Diiiviuiru), a.v. hut, (subst.) ^ 17: "Delia parttli 
Parlarcc tncerc 11 bene — Prcdicarto, /\nnuTtaat\o O uMima, rhe ts» 
t^n {•ii.tlU. cioi. lanli tKoi dclU povcriA i:cncr«sa lammcnii. P| 
bcllo larlo Soalaiitivothc AvverDift" 

t S' 111 rUonto : Oibcrs, among whom is Witlo. read 5' io nl 

Castou Readings on the Purgaiorio. 


^0 toal," caid I. "who rclatcst so much that is 
ettcbet {ix. such holy exampIcE) tell me who ihou 
<nEl,and why thoo art the only one to renew these 
wifcienred praises (ij. of Mary, of Fabricius, and 
rf SL Nicholas) ? Without requital Ihy speech (if 
tbn n^Iiest) shall not remain, if I return to finish 
(be ifaort iaoTDey of that life, which is Hpeedine on to 

Bogh C*pet replies, and tells Danto that, if he en- 
iigblens him about what Dante wants to know, he does 
•0 for the sake of a human being so marvellously 
btXKiml by God while yet alive. He declines Dante's 
ptftred good offices. It would hardly seem indeed 
, tbai be could stand in need of them, for he had died in 
996, Dearly 350 years before, and his purj^ation must 
bvc been, at the time of Dante's meeting him, nearly 
U tU completion. Before telling Dante his name, 
^a^h Capet confesses that he is the founder of a race 
of kittgi so degenerate, that they are a. disgrace to 

Ed egli :— " I0 1 ti dird, non per coitfvrto* 
Ch' ia altenda di U, ma perchi tinta 
Qnda in Ic luce prima che aii mott<k 

lo fui mdice dcllit maU pianla,^ 

Che U terra ErisliBna tutta adusgia I 
Si cbe boon Initio rado ae ne schianta. 



RefsK meanhiK " contolation." otnfiyrto has the sense 
ns-Ticnio deldotorccatnonatoda infermilJt, oda dioKra'ic.'* 
3)i/.) Ocanam tTanilaien it here "loilageiiuMi,' and I 
lake tt in the scn» of actual relief to Hugh from 
Ivnnt. niher than mental co«i»olation. 

t Vila fianlj : Tommatto says that in Dante's lime the 

dfyUins held BwaT in France. Spain and Naples; Ihc Guelph 

:; Uoclena, in RfiiniiwKk, and clncwhcre. 

>4 Urra cmliana tutlti <idu£f:ui : On this, and the preceding 

lBa,fa»obati writeft: " Nun ai polrcbbc dipinuer pid accrbamenle 

llibaitia d«' Borboni. Quanta Dante adorava I' Imperalofc, 

tatto convien dtre chc ndioiuc il Kc di Prancia. Nota come fti^ a 

U. K 



Readings vn the PargatoHo. Canto xx. 

And h«: "1 will tell thee, not Tor any relief that I 
can (;xpect from yonder world (throug'h my dcsccnd- 
nntK), but because so large a measure of (divine) 
grace ahincs forth in thcc before that thou an dcwL 
1 was the toot of that malignant tree (ihe Cnpelian 
dynasty), which casts its (evil) shtidow over the whole 
Christian world, so that good fruit is seldom gathered 
from it. 

"And yet," says Benvenuto. " there were some till 
trious kings of that line, such as St. Louis, and Chark 
of Anjou, his brother, and this family down to 
present time (Benvenuto wrote about 1373) is ni<i 
powerful in our west, where there are such men as tl 
King of France. [Charles V. the Wise. 1364-80]; tt 
King of Navarre [probably Charles the Ilad]: the Kii 
of Hungary, [Louis the Great, 1370]; the Queen 
Apulia [probably daughter of the Hmpcror Charles. IV 

Hugh goes on to prove what he has said about tt 
degeneracy of his descendants, by alluding to the rcif 
ing King* Philip the Fair. Dante makes Hugh s[ 
of Philip's expulsion from Flandei^ as an unlikely it 
possibility, whereas it was already historically an accoi 
pli&licd fact, or at all events the scries of events hi 
commenced in 1297. which culminated in the battle 
Courtrai on 25th March, 1302. 

Milman (Latin ChrisUaHily, xi, ch. 8, pL 176% 

quci tempi ]a l-rjtncia vwfcitauc un certo dominio, c un* cc 
prepotcnza su tutta Buropa- il cho Dantv inJiva diccndo che] 
prjticin i una mala fiaitla ctu aduggiA tulta lu criitinnB Icr 
impcdcfidoic il bcnctizio del Sole, la chc rtuioie nt ichianti: 
/rmu>. II Pctran:u pcnuavft tu qucito tutto 1' oppo»to di DanC 
c bcflchA invciuc contro luU< Ic arnii itmniere, non ditae perAJ 
/rancftt, mn la Ifd^iCM rabbia. Sola peril chc sie Uanlr i acc 
alia dtnaatia del Re di Prancia, noiv lo pcro 6 a! ]«>pi>la frano 
QuL-l poeta delta viriii t:hc dice* imlttt ti mo»4o tuergti pairim pol 
I'ondannarc per k mnlc sue gcatc una peculiare fomiglia anchej 
monarchi, ma non un' intera naiione. '' ■ 


Ciatoa ftcaJingi on tki Purgatorio. 


"UHulip Ihc Fair the gallantry of the French tem- 

' (NaneH broke out on rare occasions ; his first Flemish 

aofiipH were conducted with bravery and skill, but 

'fKBpsvtr preferred the subtle negotiation, the slow 

I «Dd «)1)> encroachmcDt ; till his enemies were, if not in 

lUl pover, at least at great disadvantaf^c. he did not 

jnitart on the usurpation or invasion, tn the slow 

tqHonttic pursuit of his object, he was utterly without 

[(cnple, without remorse. He was not so much cruel 

tlkiCaher obtuse to human stiflering. tf necessnry to 

|fcpraccuiion of his schemes ; not so much rapacious, 

lMii4in{ money indispensable tu his aggrandisement, 

BMOCy by means of which he hardly seemed 

ItafHcni the injustice or the folly. Never was man or 

laanrtb 10 intensely selfish as Philip the Fair: his own 

[pvtrwu his ultimate scope; he extended so enorm- 

the roj-al prerogative, the influence of France, 

K be was King of France. His rapacity, which 

[^BKQitcd the Templars, his vtndicliveness, which 

I go Boniface after death a& through life, was this 

in other forms." He was defeated at the 

|tHk of Courlni, 1302, known in history as the battle 

^thc Spar« of Oald. from the great number found on 

fidd after the battle. This is the vengeance jm- 

1 on him by Dante In 1. 47. 1 1 had already taken 

twbcD Dante wrote these lines. 

QiMaiD. commenting on the whole passage relating 

' Bl^ Capet and his descendants, obscr\<cs : '* La 

Com^c rappellc ces grandes rcprjscntalionsdu 

kcnl dernier que les artistes du moyen &gc sculp- 

«iir le portail de nos cathcdralcs. Dcvani Ic 

du poete paraissent les rois ct Ics peuplcs; et 

In JDgementft qu'il en porte, it y a toutc unc 

K 2 


RioJings on the Purgaiorio. Canto xx. 

philosophic de I'histoire. Au XXe chant du Purga- 
toire, cVst le tour de la France; et il imporie de coo- 
nattre ce que tc poctc pcnsa dcs destinies de notre pays : 
ce qu'dtait la Fraacc hors dc chc2 elle, dans I'opinion 
de ses voisins, de scs cnnetnis, de ceux qu'cllc avait 

Ma, Kc l>o«Ki»,* LilK Guanto, c Hruggia 

Ed ic la cheggia a lui che tutio K<ueKia-'t 

Bu^ it Douai, Lille, Ghent, and Bruges had ihc 
power, there would soon be vengeance for it, and I 
implore it from Him who judges a^II things. 

Hugh now names himself, and at the same time alludes 

* Ma, te DtMgio, LilU, OKaMlo, t Bntggia, et Mq. On thb 
Itniiut, Oicanain writes ; " Gucrics dc Flandrc. I'hilipiK k Bd 
contre Guy de nmnpierre. Le rm tiajcne imc psitic dci c*iB- 
muneti. BalAiIlc dc l''u(nc^ Fhitippc vjimqucur r^unil U I-'ltndftt 
i la cnutanne, In truitc en paj^ conquU. Trcnic cheh dc mttia^ 
daiiH lii (>ri»«n d« ttrugM. Pictre Kbnif;, consul dc» ti«Mrai)d>,e« 

Jean Bcidc, coiihuI dcs bouchcrfi, dclivita dc Icur piiioTi, cnlnnC 
ans Bruges, souUi'cnt Ir pruplcr, toute la I'tandre eit en xmf^ - 
bataillc de Courtray, ii Juillct. ijm. Lcs PranfBiiy pcfdcnt A^K 
mille cavalici*, Ic conn^tablc cl U Aeur dc U noblcve de Piixc 
En ijtai revanche «lc Maii«-cti-t*uclle; paix avcc les FlamiuJ^ 
lis abJndonncnt A Pliilippe [,illc ct Douai. II scmblc^uc [>aafc^ 
ail ictit ce chant enirc i jo;( ct 1304. Mais ralltuiim a\ix rcm^"" 
nouH rmvoi i ij'?-" See also ilic OUimo on thin pa»u^e. 

igiirggia: Gtobeni nhserves tliat this is '*iin franzesiaino 
poslo in bocca a un rninxcic." Nannucci \.1<i<ifi]i Crrfha, 
i47-(jj quotes from the Provencal poem on Ilocibiu» :— 
" F.I CapiloU lendema IF indo-uiiii) a\ Aim clar. 
Lai M>licn Uk aiitras lets Jutjar." 
And Nannucc! adis (hat from^Hf/iiriti derived thcpu^rurrofe. 
Jtalian writers. He quoin two passages from I'ra Uuittone »' 
the word otcurH :— 

"Non poria meo (allor giuggiani bene;" 


" Ahi Uaao or (t>*»* io in cone, 
Ove uomo giugciasae 
Chi vcT d' amor (allatwe in pcoa forte.' 

Cisloxx. RauiiHgf on tht Purgalorio. 


to the Dumber of bis descendants whose names were 
eiilKr Philip or Louis. 

Cliunuto fiti di \k V$o Ciapctta : 

Di me *on nair i I'ilippi e i Laigi, 50 

PcTCui novclUmcntC PranciM i relts. 

r«Iio fii* io d' un bccc&io di Parigi. 

Intcdlcd Hugh Capet yonder (on earth): of mc 
St born ihe Philips and the Louises by whom in 
Rtttii times France h«s been njicd. I was the M>n of 
'«to:her of Paris. 

rttro centuries and a half, that is from 1060 to iji6. 
was cither a Louis or a Philip on the throne of 
Hugh Capet was the son of Hugh the Great, 
ef France. Burffundv-. and Aquitainc, and Count 
raand of Orleans, but legends were ever busy to 
htiQ out something diflirrcnt from what he really 
Otanam divides these legends into three classes. 
iifUlif^toia Ugttid. This made Hugh descend from 
EAnRKii. and relate* how St. Val^rj- appeared to him 
ettjoiocd him to restore to religion the monastery 

' Th( VKCttteflB w» as (nllnvn : — 

ii^C«rct. Dokc ■>( t'rancc, 
lh^C«pct, King ol l'ranc«. 

B««)I. ' 

L«*«VI (ilwFati, 

tMMVtl <(h^ Voting), 

HbIij !" ru«.(i|tcCoi>qMemf), 

Lnit \'\ f:\4irit Luuis), 
Aibp III (the Bold), 
'**plV((he t«iri, 
l«ai X (the Quarrclsofiia), 
Ml? V (tile Loos), 

died «)56. 
died in6. 
di«il lOji, 
dird 1060. 
died no!}, 
died 1137. 
died iiHo. 
died iiSj. 
di«d 1346. 
(lied iJ7i>. 
died IJ85. 
died 1314. 
(fied I ji6. 
died 1^2. 


Readings on the Purgatorio. Canto xx. 

of St. Vsl^ry, which had been desecntted, and promised 
him, in requital, that by his intercessions and pray-er^ he 
would get Hugh made King of France, and that his 
heirs should icign down to the seventh generation. 

(B> Royal legend. According to this fable, Hufjh was 
lineally descended from Charlemagne. This legend 
prevailed down lo ihe time of Louis XI. and in 147^^ 
when the action at law of that monarch against the 
Archduchess of Austria was pVaded before the Pope, tbe 
ambassadors of Louis XI gave ai^surance that it wa 
their King's great boast and glorj- that he was the Ir 
legitimate and undoubted successor of Charlcmag 
and it was replied to them that the fact could not 

(C) Popular legend* This was the popular folia 

'"Oxanam qucitcKfrom " l.t Chnnaon de Gtile Hvgua dtCtifeil 

du t}uin<iimc ticclc. [Ancnat. Lt fond Irii ancitn. 

remanitrent au ireiriime niScIc)." Tlnn poem wkn fir»l prioitd ^y 
the Mari^tiisdc la GrJinec. I'aris, 1S64. 

"Cc fu Huci Cdfcti, c' on appcllc bouctiicr, 

Cc fui voirs niaiH moult pou'cn Mvolt du metier 

. . . ly per« Huon que je vous dis 

Sire fu d'unc viltequi ot non Bou|cnu>; 

Kat;e» fu ct soutis, cC si etoit tfludis 

A PflTit « Ic coun du fort n»s Louti . . . 

Or aiTia pur ainnur l>- chevalier ntiuris 

Unc Rente puccllr qui ot noij B^atris, 

Xante «ti>tt b«Ile ct douce ; car iX «n fu sourpris 

Li nnblcs chcvnlkr qui son cuct y ot mis 

Oui k ft!il ilFinandi-r x At>nc par sowniB 

Au yixr la puccllc qui d'avoir fu garnis; 

Bou>:hici fu li pluK 1 iche de ticKiout le paid." 
The chronicle rcpre»«nt» Hugh itt iiixiccii yean old ha« 
diHsipatcd hiv foi tunc, and cuinini; to l'ftri» to mik anistaatc fr 
his untie Simon Ic Boucher. 

"'Biuua nicz,' diat ly bourgois,' nnUR vous rcspondcron 

Jc n' ai 61 nc 611c dc men j^cneraiion ■ ■ ■ 

Uu dcmcurcK chfrcnii sy voua aprcndcron 

CtRto Xt. Reiuiimgs <m tlu Pwgatorio, 


which believed Hugh Capet to be descended from a 
bttiicr. The tradition was current in Italy tn Dante's 
tetud he &eems to have believed it himself. But it 
bdiprcad far and wide beyond Krance and Italy, and 
It Riman de Uu^ues Capets was even translated into 
keluulK. At the end of the thirteenth ccnturv, ahout 
u^the monk Iperius, in the Chronicle of St. Kertin, 
fckhimBelfobligediu combat the opinion " des ignorants 
Mrttwienqui faisaicnt venirHugues Capet dc Miuchc 
ftdtiennc." Villani ^ives a very hesitating; version of 
dvdicoRifitance, saying that while some have afTirmed 
Ati Ho^ was of an ancient and noble race, ajid had 
■BiKtBtors of a lower degree than dukes, by far the 
IviEH' cumber insist that his father was a great and rich 
hij^ of Paris, of a race of butchers or dealers in 

I A IBCT un powrchiel ou bgcf ou un mcuton . . . 
Sc im bicn vous porlci, qaonquc vxillant avon 
\iez ipre* me moft. Je n' ai hoir. bc vou* non . . .'" 
llk^ fcfuKi lo Hcccft hit uncle's money. 
"Banti ancle.' diM Kuon qui l« cors avail bcl 
l>c Totre fnarchaiidi>e ne itaizc point tc pici 
Vo* t>uc( nc quid lUcr, nc mouton nc aiKntl • • • 
Cat )' ai appno n>e«ti«r plu( faitea et plus bcl. 
Ic Mia dc toulc* arinci armcf un damoiite) 
Et coucir i Ic jonle aussi Eur un mof id.' " 
■ hracb CnntiTitntatDn all vif^oroutly deny ihc irutli of thJa 
m Paiquin iHttktrtha 4* la Frame, liv. vi, ch. i), tliinkinR 
a Lae HuRh Cjprt lli»t tpcakii. ptolenti : "El >u wrplui 
i^ haa Dante l'o<tc Italirn ful ignorant, quanil au livre pur luy 
■■•Itk farptoirc, it dit (|uc nostrc Hugucs Capet avoit crti 
ft d'aa flouctirt. . . , Hi depui* A^rtppn Allcman en tton 
^ * la Varitt dc* »cicnctB,cli«p. ilc la Ni>ble*»c, "ur ecittc 
Wt^iiTr iinannne dtLlime iiiipodrntnicnt contic tn K^nJuloKic do 
■ON Capri. Si Dantv tulina lIUKUca le Grand, ilu >]ul-1 Cnpel 
•M Uk, avoir cat* un bouchcr, x\ cMoil mal hahik hom'iie. t^e 
^laaaiet'"' 't mclaphore, aintiiiluc jr k vcuacioirc, teiix 
IkKwM d i J'cAcorcc dc ccatc i>iirD)c»ont encore dc 

Cruuhi 1-' 

In the lines that now follow it seems evident thai 
Dante is confusing as one single personage both Hugh 
the Great and his son (King) Hugh Capet, and (hat his 
words will not be found to be in accordance with history. 
He makes the spirit of Hugh allude to a mysterious scion 
of the Carlovingian race, as to the identity of whore, 
there is the greatest uncertainty and doubt. 

I^anilo 1! rcgi antichi veiintr tneno * 
Tatti. fuor ch' un, t renduto in panni bici. 

* rtgi antiehi vaiiur m<no : 1 Intnvlnte ScartauiEini, who tajn i 
" Let us begin with hbtory. When Lcuis IV died in tliC}'cu'9Mai 
his eldcKt »nn I,< thair w» elected kinK in hi!>»tead, at iheear^, 
age d{ fourteen years. He was but in name a kine, fnr Hash ttii 
(itcat, in ihc firn imtance. anii later on hit son Hugh Capet wc 
un in fculily. I.olhair died in 9R6, He iva* succeeded by L.<i<»4 
V, Z.« taiiMttl, who died willmul issue in 987, but hdcen months 
alter the death of Lolhair. After the death of l.ouis V there wt 
but one branch left of the Carlovingian dynasty, naniely. Charir^l 
brother of t^thair, and unelc nf Louis V. Itc had a son named! 
Otto, But Charles had conKtituied hiniKclf a vassal of lh«] 
Umperota of Germany, and had thereby incurred the odium of Uic| 
French nation. Hugh Capet took advantage ol thi» circumstance] 
tu lay handt upun the throne, aitd the xame year he had him&cif J 
crowned al Rheims, Charles wifthinc to win the Ihrone d( hia] 
ancestors by the sword, wa» i>csicj;cd by Hugh Ca{>ct at Laoct,f 
betrayed b)^' Adalbiron, Bish<^ of Laon, and delivered tnio thd 
hands of his enemy 00 Palm Sundaj', 989. Hugh Capet imJ 
priRoned him, toKtiner with his wife, in a tnwer, and kept him 
there until his death in 941. Olio. Charles'* »on, died without 
Issue in 1005 ; two other sons, born during hts tmpnsonnveni, to 
refuse in Ccrmany, »nd died in obtcnrity. The line of 
CarlnvinKians thus came tn an end." 

t/uorrM' un : Scartajtiini mvk there can be no doubt thai! 
the tpirit who is conversing witli IHntc is Hufih Cape! the soi^ 
and not Hugh the Great, the father, because !n HuKh ihe Grcat'^ 
time there wcie slill tnv al Uiisl living of Ihc dc*cendarts of |^ 
"rr^i onlif/ii." If therefore it is Hugh Cspct the M>n who il 
speaking n-ith Dante, then the only t»ir left of the Carlovingii 
dynaaly would be Charles, brother of Loihair, and so far Dante is 
tn accordance with hiiilory. Hul now Dante goes on to say that 
this pcrsonaKC had become a grcyfnaf [renJnlv it fjmai Hgt), ». ' ' 
bete wc get into difliculties. Vclluicllo tried to interpret it tb 

Cvla SL Readitif^s o* Uu Purgaiono. 153 

Tiovatmi strrtto nclk mani il frcno 55 

Del govcnia del ttf,no, e lunUt posM 
Di anovo acqoistok e si d' amici pieno^ 

Ouina^ Lomtnc walked about in the crey drrst of 11 subject, 

ltna(b(cD Alhpped of his royal purple. Bulaii I have pointed 

Mitsj fUmdtMgt on Iht Jnfrmo, itid cd., vol ii, p. 396, (nntnnlc, 

niAiHiB the <rci^ty opinion of Nannucci, means by iUcU/iini 

jhl^iMIHcite bere diMJnctly makes HukIi reftr to uik Murviviir 

ittitdynaaty who WM a monk. Now, Charlceof Lorraine, whom 

Khnt]«st mcDtiancd. ne%-er did become a monk- According 

l*{ the a>««mbly at Renli*, he »a»verj'»«vcrcly reproved 

^ m biniB. Archbinhop of Kheims^ for Kencrall)- lacking Vini;!)- 

■IHe^ (or hu servility lo 11 forcij|;n iwvcrcisti, and lastly )'or 

WM( ottThed a woman uhn was not of royal blood : The 

tetfekip aaid : " Nau» n'ifcnorons piui que Charic* a hch 

Imcv* ^n aautienncnl i]u'il doit arrivcr au IrAne du chef de 

M ftftata. Uais a'il faut examiner cc poinl, Ic trunc nc b'uc- 

foeil par droit h^r^dilaitc. ct Ton nc doil Clever A la 

^/at ccltii qui te distin);ue non-iieulemeni par In 

HUM par la «a|t<asc de 1'ef.prit, celui que Ihonncor 

If ^mU maf^nanimilircnd inibraniable. . ■ . Quelle di|;i)it£ 

conKrcr i tharlc* que rh<mnciir nc gouveme pas, 

f ocp ar diMcmc n t tncrvc, qui a'cst d(grad6 au point dc 

(Milt bnrrruT de teivir un foi 6tranKer ct de le m^itallicr 

ImB* de I'uTilrc dcs vasuiua. Comment Ic puissant due 

Cafai) koufTriiait il qu'unc femmc isoue du san([ dc m 

4raBt feinc et dominat surlui r Comment courbcrait -il 

icnnt ccUc doni ka pircs ct m<nic leu aupiricurs 

U i;mnu dcvant lui el pnxenl lev mntnt Kout w« picdt. 

•«ua «t)iile( le inatheur dc la r6publiquc, crfci Charles 

; M vouN la voulcipr<»p^te, coumnnc/ Huguct, rillustrc 

DOfine<-vou> done ecchcl iltuklrcpar^c^ actions, par ho, 

p«r lea foico dunt il dupoac. Vciua trnuvcrc/ rn lui un 

'. rvm «culcnicni de la chose piibliquc. mats drs inlerets 

a. far aa bienveiUance ^-oua aureji en tui un pirc, Qui en 

w ^ ww t a lui rt n'y irtiuvn point protection r Qui. 

diiae«aur>> de* nicnB, ne kur a point t\i rendu par 

r FM » kt k n ha* lilllc dnuht that iJantc haa confUKrd the 

M «f Ac CaiUi^inciins tiilh the last of the Merovingiana. 

MiVnf III was the lait of thc«c latter, and he really did become 

1'i% depHBilion irt 752. So that »lih(>u>;h the uu<' of 

peaks here i» hi atone. illy Charles ol LoTraine. it is 

ri IL' ucfamiinr whctlmr Dante intended to >pcak of him 

r rf aaaw otticr piincc. The OUim^ thinks, thix unnamed kin); 

• Sarfalpli. «te became a monk, and a(tcn>.-arda Archbiahop 

Benveinilo give* no n*nic, but uty " mly a monk 



154 Readings on the Purgatorio. Cao to XL 

Ch* sll« corona vcdovji promoMa ^ 

La tesU di min Rclio* fu, dal quale 
CoininciAr d! cotitor Ic vacratc ossa.t 

When the ancient kings (the Carlovingun dynasty) 
had all passed away, save one, who hiid taken orders 
in grey vestments, 1 found fast in my hands the reins 
of the KOvernnient of the kingdom, and so great a 
power from my new possessions, and such an array 
of friends, that the head of my son was promoted to 
the widowed {i.e. vacant) crown, and from him the 
consecrated bones (i>. the anointed Hne of the 
Capets), took their descent. 

Hugh now goes on to tell Dante of the evil deedi 
wrought by his descendants throlI^h Avarice. H« 
be^ns by speaking of their 6i^t avaricious annexation 
All the ancient Commentators (according to Ozanain 

in poor coaisc garments." Butt states the same. Daniello thinU 
it WAS " yon\c Franciiican, perhaps St. Lt>uis 1" forgcttinK that S 
(.ouis did not sec the tight for tome two ccntutica uftcnriirilii — 
nor "lid the Order of SI. Francis esisl then. Uiagioli dccid* 
that it niTiat be cither Charles ihc Simple, who died ■ prisoner in t1 
Cantlc of F^runnc in 923; or Loiiii:d ()utre-Mer, who wnn carri 4 
toEoKland bv Hugh the Great in 9^6. The Man tn cloth <if jfr^ 
nays Longfellow, remains as great a myttcry as the man in t1 
Iron Mask. 

*ia tala di mio figlie : Philaleiha feels sure that t>ante t*) 
shifted about his allusions from Hugh Capet the father to Hog 
the Boii, without any very accurate diaeriininalion. It i« e** 
dcntly Hugh the son who is speaking, as the preceding line 
show, but Scarlatzini p'inis out that Dante cannot have bee 
ver>' well vcRscd in the genealogies of those times. It is knnirn 
that Hugh Capet (the son. had his son. Robert I, crowned in 
ihc year after his own election. Oxanam astctts this: ''Sclos 
la chrontcjue dc Saint MartiHl d« Liniogcs, Hu^ucs rcfusa dc 
porter Ic disdCmc. Mais, voulant assurer Is succession su 
irAnc, il vcul faire couronner s»n flU Robert." 

tf« iotraU MM : SuppusinK wii> JigtSo, then, ta be Robert 1, 
son :)f King HuKh Capcl. Ihrnc lines would mean that with hin 
commenced the line of Capctian kings, whose banes. Scarlai^in 
says, mean ihcir persons, which were conKctkted with holj 
Unction by the Archbi.ihop in the Cathedral of Kheims at then 
eoronation, and hence the term It xacraU otsa. 

Cisloa. Readingi on the Purgatorio. 


p. Jj;) consider that Ihis refers to the marriage of two 
bij^tn of Raymond IWrcngcr, Count of" Provence; 
■twilh Louis IX (Sainl Louis) and the other with 
Claries 0* Anjou, his brother, who was afterwards King 
rf4p»lia and Sicily. Louis IX manicd Margaret the 
*Um diuRhicr, and Charles of Anjou married iica- 
tWe, a ji'oungcr daughter.* In the increased wealth 
Md (oner which they brought to the myal house of 
Ftuwp. Dante saw the source of all the miseries of 
^j, and the failure of the Empire, which was to 
•ini ihe ideal polity. King Louis and his brother 
nwics. under the pretence of claiming the dowries 
<f Ikcir wives, usurped the province of Narbonncf 
Junrding to Qenvenuto), out of which. Fruvence fell 
kl&c Uare of Charles of Anjou. 

'Wc may notice in the lines that now follow the 

lied ironical /ter omnunda (for compensa- 

n); wbtcb is meant To imply (hat Hugh's dcscen- 

to alone for preceding faults, committed a 

of other faults always worse and worse. 

Urnlr* die la ip-«n dote Piov«ruBlc 
I Al «iBKiiK mio non tolsc U veTRDgnait 
^oco rslea. raa pur non fmcea ribIc. 

*Uiivmd lUicnctr had two ntlicr duuKMrrik, one married 
*»«Htnry III of England (if •■( dtlia \fmt<IUf eila. Purg. vij, 
'n,«4 the other to hi« brolher Pnncc Kicnanl. 

'*Lri rr>nfji!#iT'» ijitr- hiiittr tcprnche i U mtiiton dc Frante 
^"- tniitt (li- 1239, nil Satnl Uouis reeli- 

^*:: td, Ic I,imuu»in, rAE^noiK, urtc purtic 

*9fcTt) t! 'Ji u >ain!onfi«; Henri III renon<;a ft ws droits 
^a \onTian<lic. I'An^ou, la Touraine. le Maine et k fAilou, 
*tlfcwn*4c p>>ur 1'Aauirainc.'' (Oxiinam, p. itj.) 

I'wpjTM: There in gtcot difference ol opinion nmooK the 
^*MM»io«aa la which a{ two pcilcclly k-^itimate significa- 
^*rf M*fm(aii i« to be undentiiod here, .a) The senfic of 
^^te to their MTon^-dmng by CkfKl's dcncendjinu ; or (b) 

156 Readittf^ OR Uk Pur^aicrio. Cant 

Li)'* comincid con fbrt« e con menzogna 
La sua rapina ; c poscia, per ammenda, 
Ponil c Nomn^ndia prcM c Guaiicogntut 

Carln I venne in Itiilia, e, per annnentta. 

The reproach, (he dishonour, of Hugh C«p«t's suppased low 04 
ThiH latter tiigniScaiion will be found in llic Gran DiUonari^ 
vcr^ct^na, far- 4 : " 0uui'h>i< ^ranAt, Vituftrio," in which 1 
it IB u->e(l occasionally by Boccaccio and ('elrarch. Uil 
TciinmnsJn, the author also of thc/)iiio>uiri(i. points out, HukK 
self had married asiMcr ofthe Bmpcror Olhc. I, and before the 
of kit. LouiK. who was Ihc lirAt to Kcizc Provence, there had I 
eight kings all allied to the fir&t houses of Buropc. All X\ 
coniicl«r«d, the interpretation (a), which I follow, ii much t 

*J!,r is here not an adverb uf pUcc, but o( time. S«i 
Gran Diiioaaria. >.v. ti, adverb, g 3: "LI irovasi anchfl 
aivverbio, nferentc tempo, cagtonc, o allra cosa delta inni 
u«indo«i invecc di pronome, come di allrc timili part 
avvcrbiali si cooluma." Compare /'ir. xiv, laS-iag; — 
Che in&no a li non fu alcuna cona 
Che mi lcga»sc con A dolci viiici." 

\ Pi\nt\ t Normandtn preu € Guauogna : Normandy had 
taken from King John in laoa; Ga*con>'. Guicnnc and Pont 
had been formally criicd by Edward I to Philip the Fair in ) 
with n secret undcrtlanding, alterwarda rcpt>diated, that 
cca»iun was only a formal one. (iuicnnc was recovered in ] 

ICarU) . . . Vitiima ft' di CMmdino : Conradm. son of 
Emperor Conrad IV, when only 16 j-cara old, was captured 1 
his defeat at the battle of Tagliacozio, and imprisoned it 
Castcl dell* Uovo at Naples. By order uf Charlea of Anjv 
wan afterwards beheaded in Ihc public square of Naples in I 
He was the last of the Hohcnsi.iufrns, and in him that 1 
iiluiilrioiu line became extinct. A graphic account of his end. 
be read in Milman. Lul. CAri'if. xi. j. Bcnvcnutu naya thtt 
Cliarlcs's best fnends and counsellors repudiated the act. j 
not this Charles receive unpunished Guy de Montfurl, ttha 
»lain a kintman of Ihc Kin^ u( Kngland, e\-en "in tlic bosa 
God"? (i.f. in aancluary. See In/, xii). Did he not condci^ 
perpetual iinpriaonmcni Henry, brother of the King of Spaiq 
own kinsman, for some sum of money that he would not pi 
him ? Bcnvcnulo adds that a just Judge inflicted heavy advo 
on Charles before hit diialh, for, ja»l when he seemed at 
fcnith o( his success in arma. he saw the rebellion in Sicil 
the capttvitv of his son, whom his victittioua advcrsarv Pc— , 
Aragon mignt welt have slain, to re^'cngc Conradm, had he c)^ 
to BO abuse hit victory, 1294. And Cnarlcs died of grief, 
his son was still in prison. 

Vittima («' di CorradJno ; c poi 

RipinM al del Tftmmaso,* per ammend«. 

So long as (he great dowry of Provence had not 
dq}nvcd my race of the sense of shame, it was not 
good for much, but at least it did no hann. Then 
began ita rapine both by violence and fraud: and 
afteiwatds, for amends, took Pomhieu. and Normandy 
aad Gascony. Charles came into Italy, and, for 
ancrvds made a victim of Conradtn ; and then again, 
for amends, drove Thomas (Aquinas) back to 

Tbm Charleses are mentioned in this Canto : t. Ch<arle:$ 
*( Anjoa, brother of St. Louis, who had Conradin b«- 
hMded, and possibly poisoned Thomas Aquinati; 2. 
, CWtes of Valois, sumamed Sans Terre, brother of 
^ftniilippc te Bel, who used the latKta coa laqwxl giostr^ 
^■Guii; j, Charles tl, surnamcd U DoiUux, of Naples 
Hud Apulia, son of Charles of Anjnu, nnd father of 
Diate'ii friend Charles Martel. the titular King of 
HwEai^' mentioned in Pur. viii. This Charles II was 
tiken prisoner in a nava) action off Naples, in 1284, 
^ Ktiggieri di Lauria, Admiral of Pedro of Aragon. 
Utiles imprisoned four years, and was not restored to 
iL»ihiDoe till 1288, three years after his father Charles 

*iiHnt at ttfl TttmitMio: Dean Plumptrc remarks that the 

[flay at St. Thomas Aquinas having been p«i»onc(l by order uf 

Chufnof Anjoii, 1174, hai. (atlen into 5uch ditcrcdit, that it in 

■0* evt* mentioned in the currefil biographies of the f,mi 

tiantnion [VKtor, In Dante'it lime, howevct, it w«« curTcotly 

Mrvrd tbraughoul Italy, and is mentioned by Villant, and by 

all Iht early Coroinentators. Thoma* had lived some years at 

N»[i«. and h«a Ucen much rt»|>cclc(l by the King, fli all cvcmn 

t*»«nllv. On hindcpirture toatlenti GrcKorj- X at « Council at 

Ljon*. tie King atkcd him what he should icport of him. "I 

uiUullihc truth," was the answer. This alaitned Charles, and 

It » uiil Ihal he comrni««ioned a phynieian to rollow and [wison 

bk 4t the Ctilcrcisn Monavlery of Fonsa Nuova. ivcsr Terracina, 

*ben he was 47 year* old. 


Readings tm the Pitrgaforio. Canto 

of Anjou had died. It was he wVto accepted a 
bribe to give his daughter in marriage to Azzo d' Eslc. 
Having spoken of Charles of Anjou, Hugh Capet 
goes on to speak of the second Charles. This is 
Charles of Valois {Sans Terre), who was summoned 
into Italy by Boniface VIII, in 1301, on pretence of 
being a pacificator, to settle the disorders of Florence. 
Dante's opposition to his intervention led to his own 
banishment, as well as that of the other Biancki. 

Tempo vcfig' io,* non molto dopo ancoi.t 

Chtr trsKge un altro Carlo I fuor di Pnncia, 
I'ef far i-onotcerj^ mc^lio c nd e i tuoi. 

Senx arme |{ n' ckcc solo, e con la lancia 

Con la qual j;iiMtr& Giuda ; c quclla ponta 
SI) eh' a Fiorcnza fa scoppiar la pancia. 


* Ttmpa vtgg' ia : Scartauini rcmarkB that Daiitc, accordini; 
his iiHUitl cuMom, m htit as it were pnjfiltelicall}' deicrihin^t «venl» 
that had occurred subsequent to a-P. 1300 as though Ihey wer« yt 
to take place. 

t jtj«ci>t or atc-hoi, akin to Hoc or HiU Jit. The Gran ttuiofi^rii 
Miys that this form ittatill found iii the Trcniino and in Vcneiin in 
the cognate form aiuiio. Ilut the DUUmArio lays stress on anrui 
meaninf! rather "in the present time, nowadays,' thon "on this 
very d«y." It it ij>icd once a^jiin tn the /). C. Compare Purg, 

wii, 51,53:— 

" Non credo cbe per terra vada ancoi 
(Jomoti duro." 

timjfpc UM allro Carlo: "iraKXe 6 qui atirme del Umpo; Carlo 
nc 5 1' accuiativo, non il noininativo." (Cioberti.) Tmgm ta 
one of the several fornm of tmm. See Kannucci, A aalitiCrilUa, 

pp. Jiy-TM- 

^ Ptr far (onoKtr : Button tma: " impcrb chc per Ic huc vtziaie 
opcre fcce cognosccre %h vixiono e quelli de Ia casa sua. mellio ch« 
non avca fatto 1' altro Carlo sua no, conte di Pruveniae re di 
Pu^tia e <li Sicilia-" 

ll.Wni' arme is w:n<ii atfdto. " Ncl dctto anno 1301 del mac di 
Scttembre, gmnsc nclla Cttti 1]* Alai^na in CampaKnii, ov' era 
Uonifazio colla sua cortp, mesaer Carlo come di Valos c fraiello del 
re di rrancia rnn piii conti c barani, c da cinqacccntu cavalicn_ 
ftvnccKhi in aua compaK*>i*>" {Giw. fitUMi, viii, ^.) 

Cntton. Utadingt on the Purgatmo. 


I Me iiia>e, not long after this present time, which 
biiBCiinoihcr Charles forth from Prance, to make him 
ti hk mce get better known. From ii ((.«■, from 
Pucei be ^oe» out iitonc, unarmed save with the 
iBce vberewilh Juilas jousted; and with ihut he 
tfcnuta io sach Ea&hion as to cause the paunch of 
f^matt 10 burst. 

La lu paraphrase this: He comes without atiy army, 
veihitiition of open Urength, btit only with the weapon 
0* Jydis, ihxl lis treachcr>' bou;.;ht by corruption ; for, as 
jtdubdnyed our Lord to the Chief Priests for money, 
M H Clurtes de Valois bribed by Boniface VIII tn carry 
OBthitpolicy at Plorence ; and with such malignant dex- 
Knlrdocs be use these weapons of deceit, that he tears 
on from oveixrown Florence its verj- vitals, in the pcr- 
*m«( its chief citixens, among them Dante himself. 

Byny of exacerbation of his precedinj; taunts. Dante 
■« iknwrt in Charleys teeth the good cause there is 
^ kii DtcJiname of Sam Tcrre, as well as the total 
Uoitaft)) htn efforts at conquest, and the acquifution 
rf baoDur and renown. 

I^Badl non terra, ma pcccam ed onia 

Guadagfieri, per sc tamo pi^ Kiave. 

Quajita pifi liciY umil danno conta.* 

^Wrcfriun (from this expedition) will he win no 
*'Mwj(, hut iin and shame (as a perjured traitor) 
••oodi the more gricvoui! to him&clf, as the more 
Iftt lucb diagrace counU in hia eyes. 

Ksfeiice is now made to the third Charles. He was 
'^Charles 1 1 of Naples and Apulia, and the son of 

ly- Scan»2xini »ayn that tl)is fully eonftrma the vxplana- 
'[•'■'-ta. This dcKcndanl of Hu^h*» is ao fcairully corrupl 
*■ tefci len^ci feels any iSamc for hit wicked dccdi, but coiintn 
UBotlunK " We»»cfo Carlo venne ir Toscana |>ef paciaio, 
in KDcrra; c mnAh in CKitia p«r I'u'^rri fare c rei;niine 
pace' (KtUflM, vtii, cap. 49, or in aonie cditiona jo.) 

Readingi on the Purgatorio. Canio XX. 

Charles (I) of Anjou, whom he succeeded, The pre- 
viously mentioned Charles dc Valois was his brother-in- 
law, ha\-ing married his sister, Charles of Anjou's 

L' attras<^ che pk wc) preso di nave, 

Vcsj;io vender «uk Rglia, c (wttegsiarn^ 
Come fanno i coraar dell' altrc ichiave. 

* L' altro : 0««nnm (Lt Pttrgatoitt dt Diuilt, pp. jiS-lJO) 
that this passage is " VeHgrance itu poiU." Me adds : " Toq| 
colfrcs dc Dante CQiitTc la France n'atlcs.tcni 4)ue mli 
grandeur. La France vucciduit & I'Hmpire duns Ib mi 

Sirdiennc dc la chr£tient£ . . . Nous tavons maintenani paurqi 
ftnlc poursuivit d'un rewentitnent si implacable la r*c« 
HuKucs Capet ct ce royautnc dc Prance dont I'ombrc nutlfa 
mcnafsit. aJuil-il, dc couvrir (out I'unJverv Noiu avons vu i 
meni la t'rnnce nuccMnit k TEmpire dans la tutclle d« la chr^li- 
cnti. Ccltefjntndc pen»te dc CliailcinaKnc uu plut£l de L«i>nlll 
cetic inspiration hardie de relcver I'empirc mmain, dc le rtginir^ 
par 1 'esprit catholiquc cl d'cn conficr la garde i I'ipic den Gi 
maink, cc dcukcin, pounuivi pendant 450 anx. ptrissait par la ht 
des cmpcrcure d'Allemagne, par la qucrcllc dcs investiture*, pvl 
schuine dc Frederic Barbemusse. par I'apoitastc dc Pr^dinc 
devcnu Tenncmi public du chritlianisine. La d£cadence 
I'Gmpire Hail ^omplitc. Kodolplicde HabsbouiG r^duit k raccal 
modcr son pourpoinl gria; Albeit d'Autiichc en gucnc atrc ll 

EAtrea de la Suisse : lea Equipages de Charles IV atitxi* pari 
ouchers dc Wormi; Wcncci.las d^po^i pour avoir inanifut 
proligcr la paix de I'Ejiflise, diminuj TEinpire, dimnt dca blaa 
Kcin^s ct f^it coucher dcs chiens dans »a chdmbrc PcfldaDi ' 
temps \k. grandeur cioissante dc U France. Lc iKim dc 
Louis cmivrait la faibtes«e de ws descendant:!. [>ans » 
itatt venus m; liunir lea c<>uranne« dc Kavairc, dc Sictlr, 
Hongric. Dcs princes d'origine franfaisc regnaicnt en Chj^ ] 
CO Portugal, ct Ic souvenir dc rEmpire latin de CanetanluwP 
n'ftail pas efTacf . I,^ France, qui avail prts la defense du tail 
iitffi et la cunduite dcsciniudea, aemUait done appel^e i • 
monarchic universclle. idfal dc lous les publkUtcs contcmporiU 
Les crainlea du poi:tc n'avaicnt done rien dc chitncriquc. 
commeitl n'cut-tl paa pouMt Ic cri du pntriotisme imie qtMnd I 
voyait commcnccr rexiculton dc tea dc.tscins ? Comment nca" 
tl paa tit blc&vj dana toulet: m's convictions politiqucs. lui I'auic 
du traiti Je .Vvimrehui, oik il s'cfTor^ait d'c'tablir la pcrpeluilc >ic I 
Dtnnarchic universclle cbci Ics crapercura d'Allcmagne, en ' 

to XX. 

Readings oh the Purgatorio. 


The other, who but lately went forth Irom his ship a 
priiKKier, I see selling his own daughter, and haggling 
Cor the price to be p»ii for her, ju>t ascoriuiirisdo with 
oibcT fcnmic slaves. 

Vemast remember that at that time the whole coast of 
Illlf was subject to the depredations of Saracen corsaira, 
rtomcd to seize maidens and sell them for slaves in 
tte tiibt. Bcnvcnuto tells us. thsil in 1284, while 
irfc* of Anjou had gone into Provence, to collect 
to re\-enge the mas&acre of the French at the 
Stian Vexpers. he had particularly charged his son 
Ciurles, who is mentioned in the above lines {79'di), not 
wiay account to be drawn into any action by sea or by 
Inl during his absence. Ku^gicri d' Oria, a most 
dniinfuisfaed naval commander of Pedro. King of Aragon, 
bnine this, came with a threat fleet to Naples, and 
«n ewercd the port, shooting missiles into the city, and 
ttiing Charles the younger to come out. RugRicri well 
Uew ibai Charles of Anjou was already off Pisa with a 
pot 8cet 00 his way back from Provence. 

jQafci At VkIou, s^naleuT dc Rome, marie h Vhiniiin de 
! de ConiitaAtitMplc. porter U m&in kUi* \a Toscftnc, sur cclte 
' Ac ['torcnce qui avait fcrme acn portcs aux enipcrcun ? 
loa«nincni nc pa» cxcumf la colire dc I exile ? Mais la colire 
*<Uii«aiic conieilliire ; elli- nveusla Danlc k ce point, que ce 
m dn vivanta ct dcs mons. cct historian dc loua le« siteles, ne 
BAIt paB •'itrc apcTfu dc nainl I»uift. II connalt I» ufTaircs du 
••fc, il n'mblic fii ks khan* den Tailarca, ni leu princcn 
'*»^<rTc:. ni k* querellcn de» plun pctiti BeiKnirors de Lombardic 
\^it lomacnc. II nc pcui ignotcr Ic nom dc: Mint Loiiia, qui 
I (Thre mis sur Ici amelN ; maJa il ne eoitiprend pas, il nc vcut 
oprcfldre la dentin^ hff<iique d'un prince qui porta si haut 
irchic rmn^alM; memorable example dc I'tiijufiticc dcs 
pelitiqjjcv Dcua grander Jmes travcritnt ?c mtmc 
: Mn» « connaitri;. poui nous apprendrc k croirc h la vcrtu, 
iiK ifap.t d'Butre« ranf^ que \c^ nAtrcti, vt, sans darter doux 
.4 (v^Kctcr noe cnnetnis." 
" _1j .^= _ _ -^ 


HeaAings on the Pur^atorio. Canto X3 

Charles the younger fell into the trap, and embarked 
with all his chief officers and engaged d' Oria. Lilu 
the King of Syria, in bailie with Ahab. who said lo bis 
chier captains, " Fight neither with great nor small, bai 
only with the King of Israel," so did d' Oria order Hi 
captains that their chief duty was to capture youtlj 
Charles and only to attack that galley which bore ihC' 
royal standard. The result sattslicd his expectations. 
The youth was captured with nine long ships, and with 
all his groat oPficcrs of state, who were utterly usclesa 
in a naval action. He was taken to Messina. Twoi 
hundred of his nobles were slain with the sword tote-i 
quite the death of Conradin, but young Charles wwj 
reserved with a few of his companions, and KenvcnnWj 
says he would certainly have been stain, had not Queeo , 
Constance (wife of King Pedro, and daughter of Manfred, 
who alludes to her. Canto iii, 115), ordered his hfe I" be. 
spared. The following day his father, Charles of AnjM). 
touched at Gaeta. and hearing the disastrous news, broke 
out into a great explosion of wrath against his sun »»* 
said : " I wish he had died, rather than disobey my ^^ 
tinct orders." After four years' imprisonment, during 
which Charles the Elder had died, the younger Chadc* 
made peace with Pedm. and was restored lo his kinj!d(tf*' 
in 128S. It was then that he gave his beautiful dauKtite' 
Beatrice in marriage to kr.zo, Marquis of Rste, ellbel 
for 30,000 or 100,000 florins, according to two diffcrefil 
authorities, hzto being much older than Beatrice, aiw 
of e%'il reputation. 

Hugh cannot here repress an exclamation of indignan' 
reprobation of the conduct of so unworthy a descend 

avarijcin, die puoi tu ptCi farnc, 

HoKin'ch' hAi to mid san£u« a te si Irattts 

Cuuo KX. Rfadingi on ttu Purgatorio. 

Che non bi cun dctla ptnpria cwnc ? * 


Ob Avarice, what more canst thou do with us, aince 
ikn luM so drawn my race unto thyself, that it cures 
M lof iu own fleih ? 

Dot now Hogh comes to spcalc or what he evidently 
OHttkn a crime which leaves all the above-mentioned 
■a in the shade. 

Pcfcbi men paia il nul (uluro e il fatto t S5 

V'EK'° "* Alagiia cntrar lo 6o(datisa, { 
E Del ^'icario f uo Criito CHur catta 

Vrgipoki on* altta volt* nscr dcriso ; 
Vcggio riDDovcllax I' acclo c il Me ; g 

*/«y ia cmrm: Giobcrti says that the pxptcssion is "viva 
Matui, bcOiwma. lilla i antica quandn In (ieneii c mndcrna 

CI vol^ari di o^];igiorno." Compare Got. xxsvii, 37 ; and 
'™i, 7 ; ''Camcm tuam n« dciipoxcm. " 
'^Atf jWani c ii Jatto : Thia line )s vcr>- obscure, but the cx- 

Cm of Ijkfta %e^tni much Ihe tnoit clear. He lays that 
vi«h(« to Tcicn that Hu^h wait prophctyin^ to him what 
*Mpi9f; to bmpp<n, ihuugb us a matter uf fact it hud already 
Mnphcc. Mr, Toxcr puta this well : " As if to cnit into nhadc 
tjuMraat ih« crimes, past and future, of my dcKcndama," I 
Hind jna whit m k'mnii lo happen. 

M'u^'i* AUt^itJ tntrar U> )ior,Uilno : Dante means that he sees 
Alhcne»of a Caihfilic the indiKnilii^stu which I*op« Boniface 
™titlw Vicar of Chriftt, waaHubfcclvl at Ala^nafnow Anaj^ni) liy 
IwiiiiML dc Nogaret and ^laira delta Colonna by order of I'hilip 
h fur in 1301, and from (he munilii.ation of which he diet 
'imOfttiri'mtiTt al Rome. The event isrclated by Milman {Laf. 
And. i. < tf). Althoujth Danlc entertained fcelinjE* of 

fiiviici.' . <rili Boniface, lie viewe<l with the oimmt nbhoe- 

"••to treatment by the emit^aricn of I'hilijv No penonal cn- 
UmU make him lorKet that, aa I'ope, he was the Vivar of 

(/ frU • tl {a tboui^hl by many Uibic Commentator* 

led wilh Rail," K'^^*) ^ <^'' '''^''l al Hi' 

iian aoldict)-, wa» in reality the thin witic 

. !t>rm«clvi:j diank. mercifully offered for the 

■ne His burning ihirrit, and with tome bpicc or 

I u ir.ii 'ould Mnd lo allcviaie H» suHcnnKa. 

L 2 

CI ann i 

164 Readings on the Purgatorio. Canto 

B tra vivi Itdroni f*et ancito. * 

*lrm pipi ladromi eaur tuieUo : Dr. Moar« {Tttlual CriHcUm, pp. 
mj-397) in dwpAting sumindrily of the variant nuovi t^nmi »dyi 
«( it t " For in th« case of the Uuiroii h«rc intended, vi*. Nogaret 
and Sciirra Colonna, the parallel with 'the thieves' »n far fails, 
(hat though branded by Dante ss ladront, and though assisting at 
this ' cmcifying afre«h ' of Christ in the person of f lix Vicar, yel 
ihcy wi'fe not thcmarlvcs luflcrcra, they were not put to death of 
injured in any way like the thievL-n to whom Ihcy are compared. 
Thia dislinclion is pointedly brought out by vivi, and so thii 
epithet gives a fresh character to the scene . . . I'lVi would re- 
present to ua Boniface a» it urcrc crucified between Kncarct ani) 
Sciaria Colonnu, who were standing on either bide of him mockii 
and insulting him, yet Hiill I'li'i." Dr. Moore odds that, thou 
doca not bear on this rcadinc he cannot help mentioning the 
terctlinc pointH nf resctnblance betwtscn thin whole patsa^e and 
the prayer to the Virgin compoMd by Boniface VIII. This u 
ici^'en by Kannucci in hi* Uanuah dtlt/t LitUralnra, vol. i, p. 411. 
The resemblance can scarcely be accidental, jnd it i* rnost curious 
that Dante should have thus imitated a cotnpoaition of his bitter 
enemy. It should be noted however that this occurs in the one 
passage in which he speaks of him with sympathy. Nannucci 
states that these verse* were discoverei) by (tirolamo Atnati in an 
ancient MS, in the Vatican Library, wherein it iasaid that, in tl 
liftcenlh century, Ihcy could be ocen in the Basilica of San Pao' 
Puori he Mura. with the follnwinKCUiious inscription :&Mlaj 
Juxiepa^a Mlitvi>J»t la infraicritl.! crd^iiiiM, t tomittt a chi la t 
libtratiwt di mortt tubilam.u A few of the verses are aubjoic 
here : — 

"Stava la Vcrgin sotlo delta cruce: 
Vedea patir Jc<iu, la vera luce. 
Madre del re di tutto 1" universo, 
Vcdeva il capo chc stava inchinato, 

B lutlo it corpo ch' era lornientaio 
Per riscattar <|ucsto mondo perveriM. 
Vede lo fielio. che guarda c dice : 

Oh '. donna afRitla. amara ed infelice 
Rcco il lun flglio: c Joan Ic ni»iitrava. 
Vede r accto, ch' vra col hel misto, 

Dato a bevcfc al dolcc JesCl Cristo, 
E un gran coltello il car Ic trapassava. 
Vede U> iijitia tut to passionato 

nicer col la ^iilluia ; i consuinalo: 

Ptume di pinnto daijli occhi disserra: 

n Cristo pate c muor tra Ic Aagclla." 

Dr. Moore invites especial comparison between i'*e£io. four tir 

repeated in Dante, and VtMi<it and i'tdt, similarly recurftagj 

Caolo X3L Hcadingt on the Purgalon'o. 


\fe%ipo il nnavo Pilato* «) crudclc, 

Che ct& no) t-auo, ma, Kfijta decreto, 
F»rta ncl tcm|tio Ic cupidc vclo. t 

In orilcr that the evil deeds (of m^ dcKcendAnIs) 
whether futuic or past may appear less atrocioua, (I 
will tell thee thxt) I see the Fleur-de-lys enter into 
Al«gna, and Christ HimBclf taken captive ■'□ the 
pcraoo of His Vicai (Boniface V'lll). 1 sec Him 
mocked a second time : 1 sec renewed the vinegar 
mod the k^"> '"'^ Him»elf slain (oticc more) lietween 
livin); thieves. I see the modern PUatc (Philip IV) 
■o telenttens, that even thta docs not sale him. but 
without any legal amhont%' he pushcii on his covetous 
■ails tnto the Temple. 

In the (bllowing interesting pas^Ka^e, Ozanam {pHrga- 
^"''•PP' S30-332) discusses the relative demerits of Pupc 
Bonibce and the King of France : — 

(!■ W^amc of bdr line* in Iloniface'* poem. Notice also the 
«wb Mil thm^i r\t frit in boih. He at«o thinkn thst (he compnri- 
•wol thi wtfttinjpi <ii ihc I'n^ with thoic of our Lord mny have 
taaiw—'f^ by the Pnpc hiniKlf, who we ire told by Milman 
iff ni ;hc arrival d( I11& |ictMcu(ora, Killing with calm 

•pnlj - ::i:anc. nod refuttmi; to II)-, Miyini; : "^ If I uni be- 

(MTvi lAc Christ, 1 am irady to die like Cliribl." 

*«*«t PiUU : I>«nl< applies this epithet (o Philip the Fair, 
•fco fcTiitrcd up Konitacc VIII into the hards of his mortal 
Bt^B the Colnnna, even as PontiuK Filute rlelivered op Our 
l*dl9thcj«n. In Inf. %\%, SS'^7i Dante styles Bert rand da 
(■■t "b* Burchaaed the Papacy by Simony. Kwtw J,ium. 
*KiMt*o Jaaon aarl, dt cui ■! tcsge 

Nr Uaccabci: c come a quel fu molk 
Sbo r«, eo«l fia a lui chi I'rancia rejjgc." 
■wltrtfuidde Cot, aa Pope Clement V, vat. the tubscrvitnt 
■"■ M Philip ihc Pair in hii wicked deeds, amon); which was 
*w wiaililtplc dealrucUon ofthe Krii);hlt> TcmplarN. 
_*WK J iftr " r,i ml trmfio It cupult p/tf : In iji*. rhilip 
fWfnttd '■ ! ril the Templarson a numbcrof tiumpcd-up 

tit- v i.< '' "« iheii I'fcceplones, their propcrt) And their 
anil, after putting them <(> the mo*l inhoman lortufcs 
I ffom I'ope Cletnenl V u reluctant aaicnt to llietc iltrgol 
F^ttdniKa. Danle eapccially ccniurca in these liner ihc absence 
tfahit trial, an! the real motive of Philip's xenl agaiDst the 
Tnrbrt, whkh was hia covetouanets of their possessions. 


Readings on the Purgatorio. Cantc 




"Sur nonifacc, qui avatt fait trembler Ics rois, 
cv^que*. Ie& rcligicux ct Ic peuple, fondircnt tout 
coup la crainte ct le trcmblement, pour apprendrc a 
pru-lais h ne puint dominer avec orgueil, mais A 
rendre le modt:le de leur troupeau et ^ se faire 
craindre (ju'aimer. 

" Mais que pcnscr de Philippe Ic Bel, ce prince fU 
monnaycur, entour^ dc I^gistcs, nc travaillant q\ 
accn-ditcr la maximc de Pierre du I5ois: 'Que 
souveraine liberty du roi consiste A ne reconnaitrc auei 
supi-rieur, mais A %e faire obt^ir KariK crainte d'aucu 
censure Itumainc,' qui fabriquc unc bullc; 
longlemps d'a\'ance niJgocic clandcslini^mcnt av< 
Colon na ! 

" Dante fut trop sev&re pour la m^moire de Bontf 
et au XIX' chant dc CEnfer. il lui marque sa pla 
parmi Ics Simoniaqucs, mais non parmi les hcnHiqi 
ni Ics impics. Dante est I'cnncnii politique de BoniEaC 
il croit lui devoir son exil, I'asservissemvnt de sa patri 
il I'accuse de frauds, dc simonie, d'usurpation ; il sei 
bicra mOme, au XXVII*> chant du Paradis. rjvoquer < 
doutc la Icgitimit^ dc ce papc. Mais en presence c 
crime d'Anagnt, son Ame catlioliquc s'fmeut : il ne vo 
plus que le Christ caplif en la personnc dc son vicair 
II fait preuve une fois de plus d« e«ttc oilhodoxiv <|u'ii 
a vainement conlestde. Ce grand humine crut ce qt 
nouR croyons ; il nc pensn pa-t qu'il y eAt deux Tiv& 
linns, unc cxtfricurc el chargcc de fables pour I 
pcuples, Ics fcramcs, les cnfants, Ics pctits, ('autre toil 
ralionntllc pour le petit nombrc dcs savants el d 
philosophes. II nc pensa point sc vcngcr sur la papav 
du tort que Ic gou%'ernement lemporel d'un pays lui av; 
fait, ni s'cn prendre au christianisme dcs 


Cuto tX. Headings oa On Purgaiorio. 167 

tbttitm. S'il cut contre plustcurs papcs dc son temps 
fa pnles amires, s'il n'^pargna pas Icr moeura du 
cleri;e.c'cstqu*ilaima TEglisc, com me U aimait Florence, 
f n mmir jaloux ct c\i|;cant ; il la voudrait sans tfLche, 
illioeoRire, il I'injurie ; mais conime saint Bernard, 
aimine saint Thomas, comme ccs ^^randa hommes qui 
^litw le nal. mzh qui ne dt^sesp^rent pas dc Dicu." 
V HiqI) Capet concludes by invoking the vengeance of 
GtdDpofl so much infamy. 

Sifinttr mio, quindo nj6 io licto* 

A vwler la vcftdctU. ehc nascos* 95 

Pa dolcc r ira tua nci luo scgrcto? 

I my Lnrd. when shall I be made joyliil by seeing 
'•n^eance. which, hidden !n Thy scent counfic]B> 

nuto points out that this meant; that, when a man 

ituflcrcd an injury knows that speedy vengeance 

loa the ofTcndcr, he secretly rejoices in his heart, 

Iheiaj-s the same thing will happen here with the 

'■OttraF God. which in brief space will fall on Philip 


III. — Several llagranl instances are now 

Avarice a& exhibited in |>ersons both of sacred 

pndne hi»tory, and Hugh Capet answers the 

of the quL>stions which Dante had put to him 

/I'l as In why he alone, of all the spirits in the 

' r/j : Comiijitc /•j.i/>w, K-iii, 10: "The 

t ilicn he si'Cth the vengeance: he \ha.n 

iIk Uood of Ihr wicked." <iiitl abidn Hisown 

1)1 wlut is ordained will lurcly come to fiasa. 

• \ K\vR in the wrath ttf God, because He 

out of Ili« own rightcouK vcni;e.>nce." 




Rtadings OH the Purgaiorio. Canto xx. 

Cornice, seems to care to renew these well deserved 
prai5e& That, we may remember, was the recalling to 
notice certain instances of voluntary poverty and great 

Cid ch' \o (ticca di quell' unici sposa 

Dello Spirito Santo, e die ti fece 

Vcno me volgcr per aleuna chiosa, 
Tnnto i rU|>iMta * a totlc nottrc prccc, too 

Quanto il di dura ; ma, quancl' c' «' annatta, 

Contrano auon f prcndemo in quclla vecc. 

As to what I said of thai one only Bride of the Holy 

Ghost (the Blessed Virgin), and which occasioned 
lhc« to turn to me for some explanation, that is the 
ccsporiM; t» all our pmyers for so lon^ as the day 
lasts ; but, uhen night comes on, we take up the con- 
trary sound instead of thaL 

The meaninif of this is : These examples of virtuousi 
persons, conspicuous for their voluntary poverty and 
liberality, as lun^ as the day lasts, follow all our prayerfi. 
as though they were the natural answer to ihcni ; but. 
when the night comes on, then wc proclaim instead the 
evil examples of those who were friends of Avarice and 
Cupidity, and their just punishments. Liberality makes 
men to shine. Avarice makes them (^scure. 

Hugh next runs rapidly over several examples of the 
hateful sins of avaricious and covetous persons. First 
he mentions Pygmalion, the brother of Dido, who, 
through blind greed of gold, murdered her husband, 
Sichacus, King of Tyre, and drove bis sister an exile to 

Kill : Others read disfMto. 
rrto nuut: Compare Pttrg. xiii, 40-41: — 
.0 fnn vuol esacr del contrario suono; 
Credo chc t' udirai, per mio awiso. 
Prima the giunghi al paiiu del perdocio.' 

iMaXL Readings oh tht PHrgatnrio. 


Kd ripctiain Pigmkllon* tllotla,t 
Cui lrit<litore e ladrn e pulHcida | 
Fccc U voKlia hm dell' oru chtotUi 105 

HJtn we recall to mind Pygmalion, whom hia in- 
ntiiblc lust for gold made a Imitor and » thief mid 
• piniode. 

Ke Kts n trailor because, when bouni] to Sichacusby 
Jn Mih o( failh, he killed him unawares while sacri- 
ficing It the altar of Hercules, in whose temple he 
"U ptitst. A Ifii^f, because he touk his brolhcr-in- 
uw'i gold ; and a parricide, because Sichaeus was not 
onlj hit brother- in- law, but also his kinsman. Par- 
ricide. Benvenuto Ictis us, in commonly used as a term 
fw lie murderer of any kinsman. 

Tke next example of Avarice is that of Midan, King 
of Lydia, whoM father Gordius tied the famous Gordian 
^- Midas was supposed to have obtained from 
^•ccliusthe faculty that evcrjthing he touched should 
^««acgold, but, the result of this being that he found 
KfflieM 00 the point of dying of hunger and thirst, he 
*e>nght deliverance from so perilous a privilege. 
Beovtnuto says that, by this allegorical talc, the poets 
vubed it to be understood that the Miser, while rolling 

h^mttiM : Thiv aory is told in Virgil, /Hn. i, J40353. 

**&nt .- Another form of alhn. The mcBmng of it here is in 

cdinntton «ith <faanJo s' annolla in L toi, where Hush told Dnnte 

(^ after ni^hlfall ihc tipiiilti take up a rftfrcrcnl «Uain {(ontrarw 

'^wj lo wliat Ihey h«vx' been mnKinc bclure. Then, mvb he, 

(iAMi)irc beKinlo ung iboui Pygmalion. Midis, Achan, Ananins 

l4 Stpphirt, Heliodoru*, Polymncitor, and Crauui. 

IP^Intidt : '* Bl <|uia ci>|i;nAtuin occiilit, vocalur panicida: nam 

Ecl puRiior IcKc Piimpcj* dc parnctda, licut ocfcidcnt pBlrcm 

NWn." (i^ctro di Dante.) The Anan. Fior. thinks i'yKtnalifln 

I a parricide hecaute Sych^eus wat the High Piieat of the 

roRple of Jupiter, and thereby a father to Pygnialion in u »piriloal 


RciiJings rtN tlu Purgatorio. Can! 

in riches and gold, lives in the greatest p«nur) 
even deprived of the common necessaries of life. 

E U tniMria deil' avaro Mida,* 

Che scgul Alia sua domandn tngordi. 
Per la qual itcropr« convicn chc »i rida. 


And ihe misery of the greedy Mida.s, that follovi 
after his covetous request, at which one always no 
must laugh. 


Dante next turns to sacred liistur>-, of which he i 
Hugh give three instances; following closely on 
come two more from profane histoiy. 

Del folic Ac&n t ciascun poi si ricorda, 
Cume fur& lespoiilie, ti chc I' ira 
Di Jenui qui par ch* ancor lo morda. 

Indi kccusiam col marlio Safita : J 

LodiaTDo i ualci ch' cbbc Eliodora:} 
K(l ill infainia tutta il ntonte gin 

PolineklAr ch* ancise Polidoro.jj 


* Mitla: The Story of MmUs will be found in Ovid, 

85-1 79- 

t A<dn : Sec Joihua vti, t-ab. 

I Safira ; See Acts v, i-i 1. ScartariinJ says that 
Sapphira do not so much Hymboli/c an avarice that i« 1 
rapacious, as a frBudulcnl, lying, and hj-pocnlical avarif 
Kcka to diaKuisc itself In the g^io of liberality. 

5 lUindtrro: Thin rrlcm to the miraculoua horec that ap 
in the temple of Jt^rusakm, when Heliodorui. the trcaa 
KiiiK &:tcucu*. vcKl lltcrc t<i remove the Ircnture. Wc I 
It in II Uiutahtii tii, 25: " I'or there appeared unio ill 
horac wit)) a terrible rider upon him. and adorned with! 
(air covering, and he ran ficixcly, and amotc at Hcliodon 
hin forefeet, and it seemed that he that aai upon the hoi 
ciimplcle hamesti of Kold." 'I'hw tubjcci is one of n 
ornaments of Kuphacl's Stanze in the Vatican. ] 

WPvUfKith- fh' •tncift i'olid«n<: Polydonis, the youtiEt 
of Priam, King of Troy, being too younic to uke part 
defence ol Iroy, was placed under the care of his father'* 
Polyinncitoi-, King of Thrace. The latter murdered 
sake of the treaHurc which he had brought with him. 

C)Bl4 n Headings on tht Purgalorio. 


UhiniitncnU ci si grille : ■Crauo,*' 
Dicci. chi il sai, di chc upofc i 1' oro ? " 

Ttncvctyone bethinks himself of the foolish Acban 
Imhtttole the plunder, so that the wmth of Joshua 
■fl MCffls to (all upon him here. Then wc nccuse 
Sipfhia with her hualund; we lau<I the kicks that 
Hditdorua received ; and in infamy {the name oi) 
P*l;snettci, who murdcicd Polydnrus circles round 
IhewhofeiDountftia. Last of all the cry rin^s through 
tV Cornice [lit. in this place it is cried out) ' T«IJ 
"*> Cnuus, for ihou know-est, what is tJie taste of 

)t»l&B point Dinle's second tguestion has remained 

Hatred, as to why Hugh Capet, of all the spirits 

I At Cornice, was the only one thai he found singing. 

brtply lo thn, Hugh concludes his long discourse 

Faplaintng that he and his companions in pcnitencc 

Ihe modulation of their slrains, and that, at Ihe 

t»hcn Danic first noticed Iiini. he was not the only 

them who was then swinging, but the only one 

: «ODg was loud enough to be heard in that part 

rihe Cornice. 

Talor paria I' nn alto, e 1* allro basM, 

Sccoftdo r ntlKJiion ch* a dir ci »i>roiva,t 

19^8; and OWd, Utli»i», xiii, 429-4^11. And Curiptdcii, 

. UaICu^ t.lcrniui Cravius wan, with Juliui Ca:»ir and 
, .. oeottheTriuimirsof Knmc. When KOvrrnor of Syria, 
Ifc Wdt/ tonli a war againvt the Farlhian King Omlcn. He waa 
Jdkati^ cajMurcil and alaiti, by Survna thv I'arihiiin general, n.c. 
dvlarvir* (TriiMiM- Floru» ihc hiM<>ri«n ^iii, ii}Tclateii 
tiK head ti( CraMun tras broufiM to OrnricK, (hat king 
of ibe avarice of Crassus ouKd molten gpAA m be 
dovn hi« tbrnftt. ScArtauini %xyi that CrauUB \t, licrc 
aa a kjnibot of tliiil arrogant avarice which viotalea 
ion rif;hti of all natiottK. 

im n iftona : I follow Dr. Moore's reading th' a dir. 
readins la tk' ad ir, which I adopted in my liivt edition. 


Reading m tht Purgatotie. Canto XX. 

Or* a msK^rc. tA on a, minor fMino : t jo-J 

Pcrb ail ben che il dl ci ai mgionA, 

DUnii non cr* io sol : roa qui da presao 
Mon alfkva U voce altra persona."— 

Sometimes ooc apcaka loud, and another low, accord- 
ing as oar affection irnpclK us to specie, now in a 
higher, and now in a softer strain ; thefefore (in 
singing) the examples of good of which wc discourse 
during the day. I was not alone just now, but (it 
chanced) that no other person was uplifting his voice 
near by here," 

Benvenuto remarks that, if Hugh Capet was a Mia 
or Covetous as regards money during his lifc-timc. ht 
certainly cannot be accused of ^vant of liberality in hts| 
words, judging from the extent of his speech. 

Dimsion IV. — Dante now dciicribes a wonderful 
phenomenon. Just when he and Virgil have recom- 
menced their journey, which, owing to the path beifif 
encumbered with the prostrate forms of the spirits, ii 
necessarily slow, and somewhat toilsome, the whol< 
mountain suddenly quakes, and the entire region, fromj 
all quarters, re-echoes with a simultaneous outburst 
of Gloria in Excchis Deo. This, we shall learn in the 
next Canto (xxi, 70), was occasioned by Statius ha%-ing 
completed his term in Purgatory. 

Noi erarani * parliti gik <U caw, 

Scaria»>ni %a xtiA^ it in hifi Lripxig cnmntcntari-i'iS?;', but in 
hi* Milun coinmcntar>- (iI4<)j) he hjis rA' a rfir, und he obscr^i-m 
lliat wc nrc ciraily lold in Ptt's- "'*• •**• tl"** *''* spirit* tMt lb» 
cornice arc quite unable to itiv^c, bulng 

" Ne' picdi c ncUc innn IcK«ii e preai ;" 
and tadir. rhtaJir, ihadir, in Ihi- MSS. must bt underetood te 
refer, nnt to moving, hut Intpcakinic. 

•A'OTffrtMM; Compare /ii/. «Jtxii, a**: — 
"Noi cravam paitili gift da cllo. ' 


itoxx. Readings on the Purgalnrio. 


B brigavtm ' di soperchinr la strada t 
Tanto, qoanio al poier, n' era permcMo ; 

Quod' in aenti', come cota che csda, 

Trt-mar to montc : X oodc ml prctc un ^iclo, 
Qoal prendcT tuol colui chc a mnrtc vada. 

C*r1a non si «CQtea si f<>Ttc Delo, 

Pna chc Latona in tci Taccssc il nido, 
A pattorir li due occhi del ciclo.lij 

W«h»d already departed from him (Hui;h Capet), 
■ulntte striving to get over llie ground as much as 
«u pumitted to our power, when t fell the tnouo- 
bia ttemble. like a thing thai is tottcnng to its 
Ul: whereupon n chill seized upon me as that 
«bidi leiJtes upon him who is going lo his death. 
'^ndly, Dc)o3 did not quake -to violently, before 



*htm»m: Id the Gran. Dis. and in the Voc. tlrUa Cnun, 

' n ttici to be equivalent to Cirtart, aI»o f'igllai'si Mga, Jar 

,Jtr t^<ra, ^mcuro't, ingtgiuirsi. In the I'tvli dtl Priaut 

'ttnit. Bvo, Ploreoce, tSifi^ vol ii. p. ^sg, uido CavaJcanti 


"I'a m' hai «i picna di dolor la m«nte, 
Che I' anirna si bric" di panirc." 
vkUr In tlrada : Costa intcrpiets thii : "diavamxarci net 
Brunonc Bianchi : "vuol dire, fcrumtria, sivM^ftitt 
iJEtt to the end of il)." The gfi:at diciionarica say that 
tK properly sptaking. more used to express goinK tip 
Aitdrcoli very happily obwirvc*: "Ma quando vi aicno 
cMkobA che ((uellM del Halirc, pu& dirv cgiuilmcntc; c <iui 
' FWcii dovvvan pniccdcrc rasciiie la roccia, cd attcnli a non 
nifnad mfioH) le ombre divlesc in terra." 
llT^mar ta mamU : Compare the earthquake mentioned in /«/■ 
• Vf>> <J» .'-- 

" Finiio qucKto, ta buia campagna 
Trcmd," etc. 
lidllK earthquake experienced by ^neas on entering the In* 
■W! Ikboeia (Virg. Aim. vi. »s5-a57):— 

' Gce« Butcm, primi Mik lumina «olis ct ortiui. 
Sub pcdibua cnuRire solum, et juK" cttpta rnovcri 
SiUaruii), visaeque canes ulularc per umbrani." 
wccki dtl ri;l:>: This beautiful expression is probably 
ttd br Dante from Ovid, «'ho {Mdnm. iv, ai8i calls the Sun 
iaraiai. Giobcrii apeuks of thv line in enthutiaslic prui^c 
ladmuation. but prefer* to think that Dante invcnl>.-d it over 


Ktadings on the Purgatorin. Canlo sx. 

that La.tona made her nest (tieretn to give birth to 
the twin-cycs of Heaven (Apollo and Diana, the Sun 
and Moon). 

The Islsnd of Delos, in the Archipelago or 
Sea, was thrown up by an earthquake, by order o( 
Jupiter, in order to receive Latona, one or his wives, 
when iihc gnve birth to Apollo and Diana. Other 
accounts say it was left floating about after the separa- 
tion of land and sea, and Jupiler made it stand still. 
Herodotus and Thucydidcs both mention its constant 

Dante now describes a loud cry that followed the 
earthquake. Ii was the jubilant shout of the spirits 
in I'urgalory at the liberation of Statius. 

Poi coinlnciA d* lutte parti * un grido 

Tal chc il Maeiilrn tnv(r di mc m fco, 

Dtuen Ju ;— '' Son dubbJar.!' mcnir' io ti gnido.** — IJJ 

Glona in exulsii, lulti, Da 

Dicenn, per quel ch' io d« v'icin compivM, 
Ondc iiiicndcr lu crido ni poteo. 

Noi Htavamo immobili c notipeBi, 

Come i pastor chc prima udir quel canto, 140 

Pin chc il tremor ceMO, ed ci compiivL} 

*da tutu parti: It muM be understood that, on the completicw 
of a sduI'b purgation, an exulting conErilulatory «houl, givine ibff 
glory however to God, nri»c. not only from ihc Cornice in which 
■ hat spirit WB*, but from all ihcComiccain Purgatory. 

t A'm ia&friar; DiMiare or Jmbtlan has the iccondary distinct 
meaning of " to rear." Scctiraa. Dix^^v. diMHart.^r. z: "Nd 
%tn*o uf. di Ttmtre o tMlMn." Compare Pdr. xxvi, t : — 
" Mentr' to dubbiava per Io vita spenlo, 

Delia (uigida fiamma che Io ■penac*' 
Which Norton ver>' properly traniJatea: "While I was appre- 
hensive," etc. 
I iiuHJ>ihi : Compare Purg. xiv, 76 ;— 

" Pcrch£ Io «[>)rlo, che di pria piaildmi." 
And Pnrg. xix, lai, ua : — 

Cmioii. RtadtHgs on the Purgatorio. 173 

Tben upon all sides there arose a cry so great, that 
m* Muter drew nearer to ine. saying : " Fear not, 
wwelAm guiding thee." Gloria in E.xt*his Deo 
tO rat saj'ing, so &r as I could make out from 
Amc near at haod, whose cry it was possible to dift< 
Mpiib, We remained motionless and in uncertainty 
-41 ihe shepherds who first heard that song — until 
ActTO&bltng ceased, and il (the h^mn) had come to 

Btmcnulo thinks that Dante deserves much com- 
mduion fur this beautiful idea. I-or, as the Angel 
B«l unjjr with joy the hymn Gloria in Excthis Dto 
anUenening of the Nativity of ihc Redeemer of the 
tld,SQ now the spirits in Puff^atory do the same, 
1 Mul is <ict hcc to go to Heaven, 
lie concludes the Canto by relating; how he and 
I, having stopped short in great fear and per- 
ly, on feeling the earth quake, and on hearing 
cunbur^t of song, ajjain move on. The phcnomc- 
bowever, has aroused intense curiosity in Dante. 

Pto riptgliammo nouro cnmniin sanio : • 

Gnanlando I' ombn; che Ki>C(*i" per terra. 

* Co«e svariiia BitcnM a ciavcun bene 

\jQ nnstro Ataon, ondc opcrar per<)e* ai." 
\f^t' uia,66:-' 

B ul candor A\ t|ua tpamntai mm fuci." 
ilDlfcnc forms, N'annucci, Anal. Cril., pp. tfh 3oo- 

umlv : Giobcrti. after rcmarliirj; ihftt the piith of our 
•M |^ner*ltr n hnly one, aitds thnt by this mmmtH mnlo 
I BatScrauitd that nne which Dante' :■ fancy has pictured 
tpoem: hr icrins it a holy path bict^u^c tt ran tbrouKh 
I oi Purealory that were tenanted by sanctified spirit*, 
■aMT ita direction was towards a icxod ■'<nl wh<> nlto^cther 
I Uid montl. Giobvrti »Ayb he never will be on ihc side 
[•ho think -lhoui:h the bchefinapflpuiur nnc— llut Dante 
:i&M poem lo revenE« himtclf on his enemies. Me may, 
icme lew plncn yield tft this strictly human pusKinn 
ttittncaa; and, considering his stern nnd fiery tempcra- 
thi» m out altogether inexctuuble; but the complesion 

" *■ 

176 Readings oh the Purgalorio. Canto it. 

Torrutc gift * in sail' auto pianto-t 
Kulln ignorjiiizft mui cor untft guerra { 

Mi (c' dckiilcrmio di upcre, 

Se la mcmotia Tnta, in ci& non cm. 
Quanta paic' mi lUIor pcnundo avcrc : 

Ni per U fr«Ha domandam' er* owo.g 

Ni per me 1i potca com vcdcrc : 1 

Coal m' andava (imido t pensoao. 

We then resumed aguin our holy path : watching 
the shades that lay upon the ground, (who had) 
already returned to their ctislomury wailinf;. Never, 

and general conception of the poem is in no sort of way intpired 
by Buch unworthy stirlimentB. Were it otherwise Danic wosid 
make himself out a wretched hypocrite, and would (eign to 
writin.i; in the cause of virtue when in re.ility winlin^ in Ihr cat 
of a paftMon diametrically the eocitrarv, and would not be 
Poet of Rectitude [Cunlort J<tla Rt4tiluJwy Therefore he right! 
termn hlii poetic journey "a holy path." 

* Ternate ifM) .- Some read this. Vomale giii. In atliiaion to lli^ 
pmiuTC of the spirits lyinj; on their racc«i supposing them 
iiiive all ruiHCc] Ihemaelvcs for the purpose of lunging the (itor 
in ti.iuUU, but had prostrated themselves again when their i 
waaat an end. 

t i(M<0 ^ianlo : Compare fnf. xv'i, n), 20, where Guido Guer 
and his two companions, havint; paused for an instant in il: 
lamenlatinnH to addrcu Uantc. lake up the refrain again : — 
" Ricomincidr, come noi rislemno, ei 
L' aniico vcrno." 

Iron Unta guerra : "Qui Dante manifesla come F 
Jrsie guiira at sun tpinin disidcroto di aaper tutto; mat 
(Iht Irut i^'h) di un ingegno sommamentc nato alia Scteni 
(Gioberti.) Compare Pirg. xii, 1: — 

" La setc natuiRt (di ^apcrc) che raai non sazia," etc. 
Compare alao Witdout xiv, zi: "They erred in the knowlcd| 
of God; but wherean they lived in the £reat war of tgnorar 
lliOHe so i-reat pjai;uc« called they peace. ' the Gran Dixiontit 
quotes the present passage, ». v. guctra, 8 43, and inierprcta 1 
word " Per An»ict&, Dcwacno impazienlc. ' 

^tr* oio: This is probably a Latinism from aunu imm. Wij 
find it used in a. similar way by Petrarch, Trionfo iella Ft 
cap. ill, tcrx, ij :- 

*' Vid' Ippia, il vccehiercl che gik fu o»o 
Dir; ■ 1' so tutto."" 

("i«o a. Htadings on ike Purgatorta. 

^wcj memory it noi at fault about this, did my ig:no< 
met (on any matter) with such l<c«o anxiety make 
■tileiirDua of knowing il, wii I seemed then to have 
Uout this matter) when I thought it over. Nor did 
llatt to aak, on account of our huKte, nor of myKClf 
foM I perceive anythiog there, so I pursued my way 
lioMouB and thoughtful. 

P(fu (f Stiie Cerchi, pp. 211, 212) remarks that the 

Uioitive reader of Dante must certainly have noticed 

tbu the examples of vice, against which the penitents 

■OKi^h w ticrcely, abound most in the Brst Cornice 

wl in Ihiji one. In the other Cornices not more than 

l»i or three arc given, whereas in the Firs! Cornice 

*t have twelve, and in this one seven instances of 

'^ sn to be avoided. In these seven examples of 

•Wul Concupiscence, it would be easy to distinguish 

lit »ewn daufiliiers of Avarice which St. Thomas 

L^9*U2> assigns to her.* To these Scartazzini adds: 

TratMfTy in Pygmalion ; who treacherously murders 

^ Bade and his brother-in-law; Restlessness (/ii^ntV 

*f9icat«iiiiK dtcuntur viiia qus ex ip»s oriuntur. ct przci- 
titaai4frin appctlium ttai%. Quia veii> avaritia cut xuperlluua 
rhibtMli (tiviiia*. in duobu» ciccdil : primd cnim kuperabun- 
■B ntinmdo, ct ex hoc P'rtc oritur ex ai-antiu oi/Juralio 
miurintnli^m, quia Kiliccl cor ejui miiKiicordil non 
r, Ct dr diviitiv KubNcniat miKfia. Sccund^ ad avariUani 
wpenbundarc in Jiccipicndo; el Recundi^ni hoc avuritta 
c^n«ii!erari dupliciter; una mods aecunditm qu6d cot in 
^-— ui . ' .1 avaritil ofilur imiiaitintlo, in quantum ingent 

[^^■hi i^ncin cl curas aupcrfluaD; attirui enim nan tin- 

[^*»t" /*.-»»< .i. ut (iiLii I'.fcUi. V. 9. Ahn tnodupoleal considcTaii 
^^_^cb. et uc in Hcquircndaaliena utiiurquandoquequidein vl^ 
j^mpnifici ad viaUntuit ; quandoqu<^ autem dolo. qui quiricm « 
**l Rtrrbn. f^llatta eri( : quantum ad aiinplc» verbum.^rjwn'atw, 
^^Utt : matin juramcnli: ki uutt^in duluo commitlalur in 

•^**. nm ad rcB erit fram; quantum aulcm ad p«'- 

cTii piiiiito ut patct dc Juda, qui ck avarilit prodidit 
twL" (St Thom. AquJn. Summ. Ih^ol. H, a***, qu. cxviii, 




Readings oh the Purgatorio. Canto xx. 

Uido) in Midas, who )*cts literal experience that the 
Covetous man does not ever get satiated with gold 
and silver; Fraud, in Achan, who fraudulently appro- 
priates to his own use a part of the booty of Jericho; 
Perjury, in Ananias and Sapphira. who ' lied unto the 
Holy Ghost'; Trickery (_Fallacia). in Hcliodorus, wha 
ViicnX to rob the treasures in the Temple at Jerusalem 
' under colour of visiting the cities of Cclosma and 
Phcnicc ■ ; InJuimanity (Obduraiio contra miurieordiam') 
in Folymncstor, who from rapacity becomes the aKsasstn 
of an innocent youth, the only surviving son of a broken- 
hearted mother; and finally Violence in Crassus, whose 
avarice forced him into a battle in spite of adverse 
auguries and menacing portents from the gods. All 
this is a fresh proof of the profundity of Dante's know- 
ledge and learning." 


^to XXI. RfaJiugi on tkt Purgalono. 


rmtfimi ixirnice (nwnxuBuf-AVARicK and prodigautv 


BvxvBKC'ro remarks that, whereas m the preceding 

Cuu Dante taught his readers many ways of avoid- 

in| ibe sin uf Avarice, so in this one )ic Heats of Prodi- 

tfiA), which is chasti&cd with the same punishment 

K^inthe same cornice as Avarice. 

BrniYtiuto divides the Canto into four parts. 
_ f*AeFint Division, from vcr. i tovcr. 33, a spirit is 
■induced, who has just completed his purgation of 
•« VIM of Prodigality, to whom Virgil explains the 
'•ptctiTe conditions of himself and Dante. 

" At Second Diviuon, from vcr. 34 to vcr. 75, the 
^''i*. in compliance with Virgil's request, tells the 
Wilht reawm of the quaking of the mountain, and of 
'■"mterwl chant mentioned in the preceding Canio. 
^ iW Third Divisinn, from ver. 76 to ver. 102, the 
^^eclarcs hims«U lo be the poet Staiius. 
'■ 4* Fourth Division, from ver. 103 to ver. 136, 
^■*<nveals to Statius who Virgil was. 

^Pt/**""!"! I. — Danic confirms and reiterates the last 
^ ■• Win of the preceding Canto, in which he ill con- 
■ ""M mi disappointment at not being allowed to gain 
I u 2 


Readings on the Purgalorio. Canto 

all Ihfi inrorniAtion he sougKt. as to the cause of the 
eartlK|uake, aad the outburst ot song from tlie whole 
of the spirila in Pulsatory. He begins by showing 
that his thintt for knnwlcd^^c was only capable of 
being quenched by that water of Life, of which our 
Lord told the Samaritan woman beside Jacob's Well* 

L« Ktc natural t chc mai non (U>ia, 

Sc non con 1' acqua ondc la fcmminctlat 

Sammanlana domandit la KTXiia, 
Mi tTav-«t:liAv«,§ c puiigcami la fr«tt« 

Per laimpacciata via retro al mio Dues 

£ Gondolcami alia giusta vendetta. 

*St. John iv, 14. 15 ; " Whosoever drinkclh of the water that 
I shall give him shall never thirtt. . . . The woman saith unio 
him. Sir, give me thin water that I thirst not, neither come tiith«r 
to draw." Compare Par. xki, 73, 74 :— 

" Ma di qiirtt' acqua convicn chc tu bei, 
Prima che ta.nla itete in te tti soxii." 

+ /,« stU Hoiural : Compare C&hv. i, 1: "Siccomc dice il 
Filosofp ncl principio ciclln Prima FiluioAa: 'lulti gli uonum 
natural mctitc dcsidcrano di >npcre.' I^ raKJonc di chc pnotv 
CKncrc, chi: ciabcun« cosa, da pravvidcnu ili piopiia natura 
impintB, i inclinaliilc »1Ir aua perlciione ; ond<-. acciucch^ U 
scienia ^ I' ullima pcrfr/ionc della nostra anima, nella aualett 
la noHira ultima felicitk, tutci natura lincnic al suo cfesi^ 
Hinmo noggcllt." 

\ftmmmtltu means more than /entmitiA. Src Tommarfo (^Mi 
wiifMi rfri Smotiiwi. Milan. 7th edition, p. 342. Sin. I4l3i "1 
Manjoni, di femmina povera, ma vcnerobilc c p«r la povcili t _ 
la piclJi, ben dice /tmniiulla. FemmiiiuefM ha Hcmpre sen»o 

aprex'Oi *^t'-'" 

g Mi trafagtiava : Compare St. Thomas Aquinas, .SuMm. TIml, 
paiH i, 2^. qu. iii. arT. 8: "Homo non ext pcrfecti bealUK- 
qunmdiu rentnt ei altquid dcntdcrandiim el quicrcndum . . . In- 
tantum {vuccdit peifectlo intclIectCts. inqunntum cognoscic 
ciiscntiam ali>:u^o» ici. Si crgn intcllcetus ali^oi* cognotca* 
csscniiam alicu|us cITcctilE, per quair non iMusit coeniiitci cb* 
senlia cauxa:, u( scilicel tcinlur dc causa quid e«t, non dicilor 
intclIectuH altingcrc ad cauaain aimplictter : quamvii per ctrc<> 
turn cognosccrc pussit dc causa an ut. £l idcA remanct njiu- 
raliter nomini dcsidcHum, cClni co^noKit cfTectum, el itcit cam 
haicre caunm, ut cllam sci«t dc causa quid cxt: et illud 6aa- 


Canto xxi. Readings on the Rurgatorio. i8l 

The natural thirst (for knovrlcdfic) that never can be 
quenched, dave with that water of which the towly 
Ssmaritan woman besouKhl the free ^tft, was lor- 
mcntini: Rie, and our haste urged me along behind 
my Leader over the pathway encumbered (with the 
proattatc forms of the Avaricious), and I was ^cvin^, 
in sympathy, for their just punishment. 

Benvenato observes that in truth the penalty of these 
shades was a verj- bitter one. deprived as they were of 
the greatest benehts; of light, for they could only 
Kc the canh, and of freedom in all their limbs. And 
Dante had three causes of trouble, first, his eager 
dcidre for knowledge; Mcondly, (he pace at which 
ibcy were walking; and, thirdly, compassion for the 

Dante now describes the sudden appearance of Stalius. 
Bcttvenuto sa^-s: " Many wonder that the most Chris- 
tian Dante should hzve placed Statius, who was not 
a Chrhtfian, in Purgatory, and do not see the reason 
Iw it; but I declare, to bcRin with, that Dante mifiht 
im^bc, from many signs, that Statius was a Christian. 
For if Virpl. who lived before Christ, had some fore- 
kwwIalKC of Kim. from the songs ot the Sybil, as 
AnputiiK testifies, how much more might not Statius 

^""W O admiratiDnis. ct cauut Jmiuuiiionem, puiA hi iiliquix 
''Vwuna cclipctm sottK considerat C|u6d ex alltiua cauta 
VndA, dc qaa, qui> ncocit quid »it, ndmir^tur, et Adinirando 
"'W'*; nee iMa irniiiiiitiT quic^cil, tfii'>uaque pcrvcninl <<1 
'"Mctaihiin ci*«nliaRi c^uuc. Si iciiur inicllcctus humanuK 
™l^"Uiii ctNcntiam Hlicuju* cllccliio i.rc:iti non toKnowitt dc 
"i* ■■* an nt. nundum pcrteclio rjut aliingit Kimplkitcr ad 
f**** primam, •cd mnjinct ci sdhuc natunttc clc\idciiutn 
•**■! i'. mjiiilum CM ptifctic hciiiii*. Ad p«- 

' tn rttiuiritur qu6d intcllcctus pcTliiiKat 


*• i(»»r, fiimK cauije. Et tit perlettionem auarn 
^'MA fu untdnctn «d Drum auul >d ot)jt:<.tiim, in quo Mdo 
lioiBinM c«niu»til." 


Readings oh the PurgaUirh. Canio xxi 

have had, who saw the Christians ever incrcasinf 
although he had seen them nearly cxtcnninatctt by 
cruel and unheard of persecutions, even before the 
time that Titus dealt as he did with the Jews; and, 
besides this, he had seen so many miracles pcribrmed 
by the martyrs whom Domitian, the brother of Titus, 
so cruelly persecuted, when the Christian name was 
conliiiually waxing. . . . Statius was most high- 
minded and moral in his writings; but tu whether 
or no he was a Christian I dg not attach much import- 
ance, for Dante has probably with much in);enuity 
pretended that he was, because many subjects have 
to be treated by him, as wc sec in the xxvth Canto 
and in other passages, which could only be treated by 
a Christian. But our Poet rather introduces him here. 
because it is known that he lived in (he greatest poverty 
and want ; which one would not think would happen 
tu a man of such distinction in the city (Naplct,) in 
which he taught rhetoric, unless he had fallen into ill 
fault of j<reat extravagance." 

Ed ecco, SI come nc acrive Loca * 

Ch« Crista appan'c ai due ch* erano in via, 
GiA surti) (uor della seputeral btica. 

Ci appjirNc un' ombiH, « retro a noi vcnia 
[)a pid t Kuardnndn la turba che iC)a<:e ; 

•*i ome m itritv Kim: Kcc St. t.mkt miv, 1^-15; "An 
behold rwo of them went that same day to a village call 
kmainujt, which was from Jeruulem about Uirwscoie furlong 
And they lalkwt together of nil these lliini;* which had hniipmc 
And it citmc to pitBS that wliiU lliey toinmuntd IPi^ttticr 
rc.taonvd, JvMii^ hini>clf drew near, nnd went wilh tliem." 

t Du f-U and itaff/fietU : These fonns arc uwd adverbially i»*y» 
Ihi- I'tw. •Uila CruiCJt). and mean "at the bott>>ni, <li>«n, Iwlo*-*" 
" I Gliibcllini facvndo ta);l>arc dapnij In delta tone, »i tn feccf* 
punlrllarc (TMt GkiMlimi banhig had Ihi taiJ lon-tr cvt airay «( 
t/u bollirm, so c»l it iuf-f'orttJ trilii fin/fty' (Gwv. Villani, lib. v\ 
cap. 33.) 

^'^ ' 

ito XXI. Reofiings Oft the Purgatorio, 1S3 

Ki e> addemmo * di lei, A parl6 pri«, 
Diccndo :— " Frati mici, Dio V\ dca pace." — 
Moi ci vTilgemmo snbito, c V'irgitio 
Kentlc* ifli il ccnno ch' a ciA tX cotifacc. 15 

And lo( eren a& Luke writes to us that Christ, lately 
Lfiicn from the sepulchral cave, appeared unto the 
1 two that were in the vr&y, so did a shade appear unto 
us, and it was coming up behind us. looking; do\vn 
oo the throng that Uy at its feet ; nor were uc aware 
of it. M> it spoke ftrftl, saying: " My brothers, may 
God give you peace." Wc turned round suddenly, 
and Vir^l rendered back to it the countcrsif^i that 
corresponds to that (1^., to the spirit's salutation). 

Benrenuto interprets this last line as only meaning 

that Virpl courteously relumed the greeting of Statius, 

bu I.oagfetlow states that among the monks of the 

Middle Ages there were certain salutations, which had 

0*ir caslomary replies or countersigns. Thus one 

•wld say : " Peace be with thee," and the answer 

wiuU be: "And with thy spirit I" Or. "Praised be 

ibcLocdl" and the answ-cr "World without end!" 

Virgil then goes on to reply to the words, " May God 

p*t >«« peace!" for he perceived thai Statius was 

in*ran erroneous impression that both he and Dante 

were bound for Paradise after completing their purgation. 

uduin his answer he shows Statius that lie (Virgil) 

■toot destined to enjoy that peace which Statius had 

••enrtd them. 

*iVi (i addtmme : Blanc {Vttnhnlariit Danltifo) rcfcrn to thii 
•crd. which Dante only i»iie» in this one place. It comes from 
tUtrti, "di online inccita, actorgcrti, nvvedcrsi." Tommnato 
IDit. 4ri Sin. p. qi. Sin. 47a) %n^ : " AMarsi (chc »" approssima 

Jf'MWnn dcnrna un accorgerst quasi p«r indovinamentc^ nan 

jrf iaiint ecrti," 


Readings on lite Purgalorio. Canto 

Poicomincti:— "Ncl bealo concilto'* 
Ti ixmKs in piicc la »r«ce corie,t 
Che mi rilcga nell' clemo cuilio.— " \ 

H« then began : " May the tribunal of truth, which 

relC(^Ic-s mc into eternal banishment (fiom Hcaxtn) 
establiKh thcc in peace wilhtn the Assembly of the 

"See," says Bcnvcnuto, "how Virgil enlists the good 
will of Statius, by wishing for tiim what he {Virgil) can 
never hope to obtain for himself." Virgil was probably 
about to ask Statius the reason of the earthquake 
followed by the sonc of praise, but Statius is so Kiratly 
astonished al Virgil's intelligence, which he professea 
himself wholly unable to understand, that he interrupts 
Virgil with an exclamation of wonder. 

— "Come," — diu' cgit, « pMt« antlavftDi furlc.lj 

*htato toHcUia : Compare Ptalm i, 5: "Therefore the ungodi 
shall not stand in ih* judgment, n<ir kioncrs in the congrcKattoii 
of the right couj^" 

t la Virtue cortt : Gioberii exiiUins vtrMt here, as accentuating 
the (iitl tliiii the Courla of the world are as it were tbcalrcn. 
l*crh»pH Danie't mcnning in to indicate by the cjiitlicl \tran thai 
Truth'* cnK- dwe1linj;-plftec is in the C'ourlH i>l Heaven, where 
ial^chood, Iraud, dissimulation, ttcccptinn, nnd every npccicx nf 
fnit^ily are unknown, whereas they congregate in the Court* 

IcUrno esiliu : Virgil urns in the cicmal t>ani«hincnt of Limi 
among those "only »o far afllicicd, that withtiut hope the^' live i 
Oesire " (InJ. iv, 42). Compare Inf. xxiii, 11^ 12D, where it la aatd 1 
Caiaphat :— 

" Colui ch' era dtiiteati In crecc 
Tanto vilmentc neil' eterno esilia." 
And Horace, Cnrm. it, iii, jy-jS:— 

" Sora cKitura. ci not> in tcternam 
Bxilium impusitura cymbir." 

if arte aniavumJotU is the reading of all the be^it Comment 
Some read •'e pcrchi ardnte forte?" But licnvcnmo, cxpr 
points nut that ['''rU, as uiicd here, in not a noun, but an advert 
and has the M:nt>e of "mcanwhitv" (iitlehm . "Interim ibanius 
velnciter, nee tardabainuB illis loqucntibua, ita quad hie parte noa 

[Cuito XXI. Rtudinga oh ike Purgatorw. 


— ^"Sc vol BJate ombre ch« Dto so non dtgni,'" 30 

Chi »' ha p*r U sua seals tanto scortfl t " — f 

"How I " said be — and meanwhile we were stepping 
quickly onwards — " If ye arc shades whom God ac- 
cepts not on hi^b, who has escorted you so far up 
HissUiruBc? " 

VtTpl resumes his explanation, calling the attention of 
Slativ» to the three P'» still remainiiij; tmubliteralecl 
on Dante's brow (oiU of the seven (raced uptm it by 
tht mord of the Angel Warder), as a sure sign that 
Dbmc is of the elect destined in God's own lime for 
Psndihc, He then goes on to answer a doubt unspoken, 
bu Done the less felt, in the mind of Statius. who 
0>i{bt,aftcr Virgil's explanation, understand the presence 
ot Dame in Purgatory while slill alive, but ia wholly 
KBtiAc to account for Virgil being there, who is not 

E il Dottfir mk) :— " Sc tu riguardi 1 *C£ni \ 

dcootstpotlioneni, nee est nomen, imotdvtrbiuin.ct taniumvalcl 
qoasttia in jttn medio, cl est vulgare floicntinum [it nsiJ in Ikt 
pt^U* ifwh it Fi-"tnct\." 

*£bDi.' 10 HDK d/g;iti; The priinary meaning of ^{giutrt ib as a 
acBter teib " tn condcx:Ccnd." Hut in the Wvt. Jtllu Cniua {§ j) 
we fine) n also u ed in the active sense: "UcKnare uno p«r 
«9M:f> .... val« Accdtatto per laic; c diccii di pcixonti 
il inkfiorc." The I'lx.i&'^iriu quotes llic (filloH in^; 
- - riini Annitn) t"«i) {LiUtre. j vols., Svo, I'aduu, Vvminv, 

im. 1. k1l« or page ijij): " Promi-ltili the, dv^nandomi per 
o, ie rinponileTii con o^ni 3on« d' oltiiin." 
ttv^f ■( the pi»t participle of the vn b uwrg-i-rc, (o l>c an escort 
Id any cnc, anil it ii in the feminine plural to iiK^ec with oNibiTi 

1 1 fp" ■ Compare I'urg. ix, 1 ix-i 1^ :— 
'Sette f nella (rotite ml ilcMzriiae 

Col punt»n delta n^tHda, c : ' Fa che javt, 
<^«ndo »ci dcntro, tjuetite pia{;ho,' diMc. ' 

l86 Readings on tht Purgalorio. Canto XXt. 

Che qucsti |H>rta c che I' Rngcl profiU,' fl 

Ben vcdrai chc coi buon convien ch' ci regni.t ^ 

Ma pcTcbi let chc dt e nottc fiU aj 

Non tfi avca Iratta ancora la canocchin,! 
Ch< Cloto impone n cia»cuni> c cotnpi)a,$ 

L.' animt >ua. ch* t tun c mia sirocchiaJI 
Vencfldo »u. non potcA venir Kola iK 
Pctocch' a) noMro roodo non mJocchia."* 

*pTi^<t: The t-'ar. if«f£t Craira tayn that, tbouieh tbc UHwl 

tncxmng of frvfilan it "to draw in profile," it is u>cd by Dante in 
this one passage simply to niRnify " to delineate, trace. 

^rtgni : Compare SI. Stail. xxv, j^ ; ''Then »h«ll the KinR tay 
unto Ihem on his ri(;ht hand. Come, yc bks»cd of my Father, 
inherit the kingdoni prepared for you from the foundatioa of the 
vntld." And i Tim. n, 13: "If we luRei, we ihall alw rripi 
with him." Oiobcrti rcmarfis that in thi> line Dante ia payii^ 
honour to himself. 

ttoHituhia : Tommnx^a (Ditiotmria Jet Siiiafiimi, p. 47, S>n. 247) 
dcfincH the di^cririicc between Rorta "arncK noto coo cai tt 
donnc filano " <lhr distaf}), and CoviKtMn " la materia (liao, tSofft,, 
eanafa, i.e. flax, tow, or hemp) axToita fropra per filarla." ' 

^iomtila .' Two operalion» ('according to Lombardi) take placa 
in puttini; the woo! wn the distaff; the firtl is to lay on ■ Rica] 
mass of it, twiBtinf; the dintaff round until it becomea attached! 
this operation Dante terms imporrt : the second is lo run lli 
palm of the hiind over the wool to unite and compreaa it : tht* ! 
calls fomffittm. aptly rendered by more than one translator "| 

[\sirocehia for lotetln. Scaita/irini says Danlc'a soul is aaidj 
be aiBtCT to Ihime nf SlRtius. and VirKil. becauKc all three 
had issued (rum the hand of Ihc same Creator. Compare J 
*vi, R5, Sft, where Dante »aya a{Taiiimii t^mflkttla :~ 
" Bsce di mano a Ln<, chc la vjighcKgia 
i'rinia che »in, a f:uiMi di fjiniiulta." 
SinxtJtitt i«alM)ut>cd in /'an?, iv, iro. iti : 
"Cotui chc mostia »i niii nci;li{;cnle 

Chc »T pigri/ia foime »ua Mrocchla." 

^s^tla: "In uinana civilijk, che a uno fine i ordinato, 
vita Telice; alia quale nullo ivcr si t sufhcicntc a ventre 
r aiuto d' akuno." (Cvuv. iv, 4, IL 44X), 

**al mulro worfo i»*ii itJ<v4liiii : Dantc'a aoul. aa Virmij 
Alaliuii, docs not sec aa do m>uU that have been set frc 
the body. Thoc discern the truth inatantaneously, but 
anul, not bcinic >'et liberated from i:or]K>rcal bonda. is uij 
do so. 

no XXI. Readittf(i on the Purgatorio. 

Ond* Jo Tui traUo Tuor dcU' ampia gala * 
D' inr«mi>, pet jno*\rarg\\, c mo«trvrolli 
Ollrc, ()iunt« il pvtTii mcnar mia Bcuola.t 


And mj' Teacher : *'If thou olMtervr the tokens that 

Ihis one bears, and which the Angel traces, thou wilt 

leadtly pcrcmve that he must in due course reign 

amon^ the jutit. Itiit because she (Lachcsis) who 

ipinn day tinil ninht, had not yet for him (I)antc) 

wound off the foil yiirn which Clotho puts on (the 

diHafT) For c«ch, and packit IO);ether, hit Mul, which 

IS tister to thine and mine, in its upward ascent could 

not oomc alone (i^., without a (piidc), for the reason 

thai it docs not sec after our fashion. On this ac- 

ciont was 1 dr»wn forth from the wide mouth of llcll, 

tDshow him (the w-ity), and I »hnll guide him hk tat 

Mward ns my teaching; (lit. school) hait puwcr to 

COftduct him. 

Virpls meaning is that, as Dante has not yet ex- 

^Biatcd the full span of life, and is still alive, his soul, 

to Iiis body, is unable to discern after the 

'■ spirits; that he (Virgil) will guide Dante 

ui is men: human lcnowled|{e can be efBcaclous; 

beiifaat, he must look tn Beatrice, Ihc type uf iheo- 

lopcal vicocc, to lead him on. 

'■•^ (ff/a />■ 'mft'if : By iht Throat of ticll !■ meant its 
fcw Cnde, Limffv, which w»* supposed to he situated it the 
«l tlicfcol. It wan uidc beCHiiKi: Hell. accordinK to Dante, 
faand- shaped, and the Circles diminished in eixc as one 
tower down, and Liititto, bein|; the uppermost, w«s the 

kA' si f-nt'i mmur mia KNofai : "Cioi U ScuoU umana, 
■^b tti (ilntuiAa, n cut succcdcrii U Sciinia dclla Scien/a 
I'catncc." (fliobcrti.) Virgil lias already told Dante 
- . . rviii, ^b'^Hi — 

"^ bd cell a me : 'Quanto (aston qui veile, 
Difli po«s' io : da tndt tn U t' annetia 
Pole a Beatrice ; ch' opera i di (ede. ' " 



Readings on the Purgaiorio. Canto' 

Dim&ioH II.— [n the extremely difficult passage 
that now follows Dante relates how Virgil, of his own 
initiative, asked Slatius for an explanation uf the 
cause 4if the earthquake and the outbuntt of sonJ 
and how the mere fact of Virgil asking the question? 
[juicted Dante's mind, as he could nuw form a hoi 
of knowing what he wanted. 

Ma dinnc, >c la nat, percbS tai crolli 

Die' dinn/i il miintc, i; perch^ lutlj td una 
Pancr • griJftrc infino »t suoi pit molli ? " t 

SI mi die' domandando |>cr la cruna \ 

l>cl mia dtsio, chc ptir con la ipcmnia 
Si fcc« la mia sctc men digiuna. 

Kut tell uH, if ihou knowesl, why the mountain gave 
6uch shcKlkS just now, and why down to its moist 
base, all (the spirits upon il) seemed with one voice 
to send foith a shout." In aakin^ this (|ucEtion he 
50 threaded the needle's cjc of my desire, that merely 
with the ho;>c my thirst became less burning. 

Statius replies that the earthquake cannot be ascril 
to any natural causes, but only to tb« Will of Cod- 

* Parvtr grUart: Uantc and Virgil »ecm to have had anj 
luitive idea that the jubilatil shout of (itoria in Exutnt 
\ wac m unanimou* outburst nn the: pari of every tpitil throui^N 
tile whole mountain. 'I'livy could not know it postttvc^-J 
Virgil aayk it u<m<ii at if all had done ao. 

^ pii mifUi arc '>ay> Benvcnuta) the tools of ihc ran 
where lh<: ruiihcs Rrow in the soft mud. Sec /'«"■<. i, i< 
wticrc C'atu tnfntmx the I'ocIb that no other plant thi 
humble reed cnuld tiiand the shocks of the surf. 

I rriMid it properly the eye ol a needle. Blanc { ' 
DanUitv) inicrprrt.s this patsacc: "toccd propciamentt 
dci^idctavB." Others read: "cuna del mio ditio;" (Ui 
a cradle, and Uenvcnuto, who adopts thin reading, tpe 
as the desire of a child in Ihc cradle for itK food. C'» 
much the more sntufnclory rending. 


Qwi eomificii:— "Cos* cw>n i che unea 
Ordtne KnU la f«ltj;k>i»c* 
Delia moniBsni, o che kik fuor 6' uiaiuii 

Libera t qui da ngni Jiltcraiionc : 

Di quel che tl ciel dA ti in si ricevc 
Bmktci puMc, e non d" aliro, c>}-ionc : 

Htbecin: "There is nothing without due order 
*lidi can be suffered by the Holy Congres^ation 
(m^wm) al the mountiiin, nor which im contrary to 
tMom. This place ia free from ewry [>ermu(alion ; 
*IM Hatven recciv«!> into itstlf from itself ciin be the 
omt (of these phenomena) and naught cIk. 

I*t- Moore {Ttxiual Critidsm. p. 401) writes: "On 
lb diftcQities of intcrprclation of lines 43-45. Scar- 
'iBaii exhaustive note should be consulted." I give 
iHirly vabalim translation of it : — 

"Ltt us interpret it by the context. Vir^I has asked 
wtiu the rc3Min of the caithquakc and of the uni- 
**n>l*oni; that had occurred Khortly before. StatJua 
Mktbt two waj-brers that what they heard was neither 
'Mnordinar^', nor contra rylo the re);ulationsof the muun- 
■■IB til. 40-42). He goc» on to say that the mountain, 
^itientiiuice-gatc up to its summit is free from ilU 
VK alterations to which tbc earth inhabited by Man 
il xAfort, and that therefore the cause of the marvels 

''•^mw: Bcnvenuto rapUEn< that rrtigw i» the ««me thintt 
prti Gi>«l. a* nvtriulia toWHtds parents or eliJer pcr^ontt- 
«h Bf pw U the t>a«<ai;e : ** Nnthing here in futKalory hippcM 
V f^iKe, M (i>ttuil»ust)' 1*1/1114 orJin4}. but yet wh*l doea 
aifVtn, Aoca (loi (KCUT from n«tutal cauiutt, as is the counc in 
6r nrU." lUit I taica ntigion* in the name bchm «• in i'ar. vi, 
l>ijb vttere rrtfiam U macd to aii^ify tbc monaalic Ortlcr (of 
FrucH): — 

** Ua trealm«nle iiua dura Inieniione 

Ad Innoccniio apenc, c da lui cbbe 
IMina nellio a mix rcliKiunc." 


Readings on the Pitrgatoria Canldr 

that occur upran it (the mountain), cannot be from other 
than what Heaven receives into itself from itself (II. 43- 
45). This terxina already contains i'« nute the answer 
to Virgil's question. Bui Statius develops two con- 
ceptions that are expressed in it more fully. First he 
explains to him why the mountain is free from even* 
permutation (46-57); next, what i& the nature of the 
only possible cause of the wonderful phenomena thai 
lake place upon it (58-60, 61-66) ; and. lastly, how this 
cause had just occurred (67-69), whence he drau's 
the conclusion that for that verj' reawn the two way- 
farers heard the earthquake and the chant. Lines 
4.3-45 arc therefore, so to speak, the Ihenu of all that 
Slatius goes on toexplai'n tn the lines that follow. Ai 
as 11. 46-57 unfold the idea of verse 4a, so do II. 58- 
unfold the idea of II. 43-44. Now, if the mountaill 
quakes when a soul risen to ascend to licavcn, the 
cause of this quaking is that Heaven receives tl 
soul into it^lf (t7 cielt> ricnv essa anima i» si). 
the soul originally issued from the hand of God whose 
throne is in Heaven, and therefore when it ascends um 
Heaven it returns to God: {'* iiccottu a quello fwrt^p 
ofuf* tUa si pattio quango venne a entrart net tnare di 
qufsta vita." — Cotiv. iv, 28). When, therefore, a sou/ 
ascends to Heaven, that Heaven docs not receive 1 
being alien to itself, but one that takes its origin ia, 
Heaven : ricevc dutufut in u qittl che i da si, Statii 
means then that nothing of what happens up the 
can be caused by anything which Heaven may receiti 
from elsewhere (as is the case lower down, where tl 
sky receives the vapours that rise from earth and cat 
its permutations), but only from what it receives ii 
itself from itself, as in fact is the case with that 

CuU XXL Rtadingt oh the Purgal^rio. 


■laeh returns to Ibc Heaven from which it originally 


Sutinsthen, as explained above, now govs on to show 
ilijtlie mountain is free from ever)' permutation. 

PtrchC cion pioggia, non grando, non ncvc. 

Not! msu<U, non brina piu su cade,* 

Che U KJiktla dct trc p»di brcvc. 
Vovolc tpc»»e non paion, ni radc. 

Hi comucar, nfi fi?IJa di Taumiinte,t so 

Ctic di \k canciji sovcntc conlradc. 
Secso vapor non sut^c pifl avantc 

Ch' aJ •ommo dci Ire gradi ch' \o parlai, 

Ov' ha il vkario di Pictro Ic pjanlc. 
Trraa fone piil giii povo ud *»«) ; 55 

Ua p«r vcnio, chc in Icira n na&conda 

Non to come, quaas^ non trem6 mai ; 

ioi Ais is vehy neither rain, nor hail, nor snow, nor 
in. nor boar-frost fall higher up than the short stair- 
OK of the (Jtree steps (iv., at the entrance-Kate of 
P-mcuoiy). Ncitber dcnac nor raiified clouds appear, 

_'fw a f»it, Cht la scttUtta dtt In gradi : "The atmosphere n 
l^^*^ barely ta reach the thrc« tteps si the Gale of Purcilary, 
[M^vtc iKe uppermost one ihcrc are no raiiui. wmi)», cartn- 
, fic- Thercfoic in that elevated region, an Statius mvh, 
'cuonif be ihosc influences that Heaven undGri;i)CK[i/ Cscb 
^<»vn<i, earned and produced by the heaven* ipn-ifudo da 
«*W)." (Lubtn.) Wc afterward* sec Dante in the 
Paradike (/*■■>;. xxviii, ((5-120), wondering, uflcf this 
1 firom Staitus, llut tlverc should t>e a li|;tii wind in the 
Ifant. Sanlc remarks to Matclda that the phenomenon 
be at variance with the pii»dple> ihut StntiuK had 
Matclda tonhrmR the doctrine of Slatiui*. and makes il 
|ta Dante that the unifurm currents, which he then feels, 

Sto the Ptiilcmaic tyiitein) Irom the rcvoluiion of 
y that of the frimum Mabilt, which cumrnunicalcs 
1 10 all thf other spherea. 

#j TanmaiU: Iris wa,3 the daughter of the Centaur 
■ad of CIcctra. Her nistcrs were the Harpies. She 
gnddca* of the rainbow, the joiner or conciliator, lite 
' of heaven, retlohnj; peace in Nature. 


192 Readings mt the Pttrgatorio. Canto 

nor flushes of lightning, nor th« daughter of Thaamas 
{i.t.. Iris the rainbow), who yonder (on earth) often 
ctianijes her place. Xo dry vapour (r^., wind) ascends 
any higher than the sumntit of the three steps I men- 
tioned, on which the (AnRcl) Vicar of St. Peter «ei9 
his feet. It may perchance tremble, more or lew, 
lower down {i.e., below the top Mep of the Gate of 
Purpttory) ; but by rejiaon of the wind that is hidden 
in the eaith, — how. I know not, — it never quaked up 

Statius Is here touching upon titc natural causes of winda 
and earthquakes, "for wind (says licnvcnuto) is a dry 
and impalpahle vapour raised bv the Sun. An earth- 
quake takes ))lace. when ihe wind enters into the buwda 
of the earth, and bein^ impri.sonc:d cannot come forthi 
it thcref(.>re causes a violent disturbance in the earth and 
makes it tremble." Aristotle (continues Kenvennto* 
asserts that from humid vapours are derived rain, sntnh. 
hail, dew, and hnar-fiiost; from dry vapour, if it be ligh" 
is produced wind; but if it be strong, then the cai|l|| 
quake. B 

Statius finally assigns the real spiritual and moT': 
cause of the recent earthquake. 

TrcnfBci qu«ndo akuna aniina moftda 
Scnicsi, si chc lurga * a chc si mova 
Per ulir *u ; e tal gtida MCnnda. 

It tnmhics here (above the three steps) when an) 
soul feels itself so purified that it rities, or moven 
ascend up above ; and this cry accompaniea it. 

* udrga . , , PttMiiriu: Scarta^zint notices that soiftC 
Commcnlators have uiiderMoud ttir^'i t" refer to the pauine ef I 
soul up totticCornice immediately abovetbconeit hatlcft. Wiiii 
thi« he richtty disagrees, for in that caae, tie ^uy3, there mvt 
have been an earlhqualte every lime Dante completci) a 
aacent. Dante was not a apiril in PurgaliHy. 


la soon as any one of ihc spirits within the gate of Pur- 
gucry proper has completed its purf^atioQ. or, if it la not 
nboU)' purified, moves su far on its a^^cnt that il reaches 
Ibe Cornice where il can undergo the next part of its 
faribcation, immediately the mountain quakes down to its 
base, and all the spirits throughout Purgatory 
tout simultaneously into a son^oi Gloria inExcthi's. 
Ba incase V^irgil should ask, " In what manner, or 
lr*bt token canst thou become aware of the fact that 
**firit has c 'mplcted its term of purgation ? " Slatiua 
Blbopitea the question by saying : — 

Dtlla oioedicut sot roler fa * prova, 
Che, iDtU libera a muur convento.t 
L' alma Mirprcndc, c di vnlcr Ic giova. 

Ofiu piriOcation the will alone gives proof, which 
[M^ will) take* by surprise the soul, wholly bte 
P* <l il) to change its abode {lit. convent), and (now) 
MbtTf that will avails it. 

: rafition, which is suddenly generated in the sool 

t ■'■k* fa : *• fhU panaKC exhibits the curious phenomenon 
'*tlitoM the true icadinn'KfJ I'oUr fa fnv»' in all but a small 
J*T"fMSS^ though It i* prcter^ed and nuMly eiplaincd by 
^^ aU Commcntatoni, who ntilicc ihc pa^saRC, without ex< 
*Ms. Lana, (MfMit, ^ihin. J-'iW,, l{«n\-cnulu, Buli, L«ndino, 
md Danicllo)t m>r dr> tiicy so much » mention any 
I in the teat. Natwilhatandinf; Ihiv (be feeble and almoBl 
[ mding ' titUn mtrnditia tohtnifa frimt ' it found in the 
■jofity of USS. Thin ia pcrhapt lo be enpfaincd by the 
-I ibc c<u« lo Ihc rif;ht understanding of the true reading 
''(•^/i ^r* ' was nr.e easily loati and dcpcndini; on a know- 
H^i4 Anatotelun, and still more of the tcholaMic. leaching. 
■« tka cofiyiat* coald nitt Jtenerally command." Dr. kloore 
sJOWariaw, pp. 401, ti>3>. 

a>M * maUr temv€Hla : Other* lead litto Ubtn, meanioi; 

Bat (Scartuiuii a%k»i which is il that change* its 

, the will Of the touR Unqucatiunablv the soul. On this 

enthuuasticaUy excUima • "Bella, vera, e lubltme 




Rca4ingi on tlu Purgaiorh. Canto xu. 

to rise up and ascend to Heaven, is the sole proof of tt» 
complete purification. The soul is gladdened at having 
such a vi-ill, u-hich, as Scartazzini observes, is not sterile 
but effective. 

Benvcnuto remarks that Statius keeps on anticipating 
possible questions or objections of Virgil. FIc now 
seems to say : " But thou witt ask if the soul does not 
always desire to escape from punishment?" And he 
answers that, however desirous the sou) is to ascend 
forthwith lo Heaven, yet God inMiU into it the will to 
continue in penance, so as to satisfy Divine justice. 

Prima vuol ben ; ma rton laBcis U talenio,* 

Che divina giustixia contra vo^Ia, 6^ 

Cuuiff (u nl |>cccar, poivc al tortnenlo. 

* taknto. The modern meaning of "talent" is compare I i^«l< 
recent. By Dante it is more often u&ed to express a neli 
impulse or desire, i^ la voianii rtUUiva or iohJumhsIh oi th 
ScholiastH. Compare Inf. x, 55 : — 

" D' iniomo mi iiuardd come talcnto 

Avcsac di veder V altri era mcco." 
But contrast /*/. v, 38:— 

"1 pcccator carnali, 
Che la ragkin summcttono al tatcnio.** 
ScartBKini s>ya that the following paau^ from St. Tticina 
Aqtiinio t.Vumm. Tktot. p. iit, SafifS. Apptnd. qu. ti, url. j) clucidsL' 
better lltHn sny commentary what is Dante's idea of there being 
an absolute and conditional will: "Aliquid ilicitur votuntarii.^ 
duplicilcr. Uno mndo voluntatc abBolutA ; cl sic nulla p>>cna ^ 
voluntaria, quia ex hue cttt ratio puenac ^uod ^-oluntiiU conlranut. ur. 
Alio modu dicilur aliquid voUintarium voluntatc cnnditionaK^ ; 
ocut ustio est voluntaria propter sanitaiem conacqucftdatn. £~ 
sic aliqua poena poicsl esse voluntaria duplicitcr. (.'no m^da 
quia per pnenam aliqund bonunn acquirimus; el sic ipsa valunC*i 
auumit poenam aliquam, ut patd in satis fa ction c : vel ciaaan 
quia illc iibcnter cam accipit, ct non vcllct cam non esw, »a<:u 
accidit in manyrio. Alio modo quia quamvis per pocniro nul 1 uH 
bonum nobit Accrcicat, tamen sine poena ad bonum perven<r« TiOl 
possumus. sicui paid de mortc naturali ; et tunc voluntas 1 
amtumit poenam, et vellel ab ca libcrari: scd cam suppoH** 
quantum ad hoc voluntaria dicitur." DrMuorc \T<\tiuttCr\li<ri&** 
p. 403) remarks Itiat the abuv-e pawBgc quoted in Scanax.Kirti 

tinto XXI. Readings on Hit Purgatorio. 195 

From ihe first indeed it has (he desire (to ascend to 
Hcftvcn); but the impu)Kc which Divine Justice, 
oppOMd to thai desire, in»til8 Into it for its (allotted) 
tament, as formerly there was in it (the impulse) for 
n, suRcTS it not (to arise and ascend lo Heaven). 

Ike lale Padre Giuliani {Posiilla InediU\ made the 
Ulmnilg comments on this passage : " Contra miglior 
nikr voter inal pugna, prima vttol surgcre c salir su, ma 
UlitMb (U voglU) c/w la Jitfina Giiatisia pt/ne (in quel- 
fnmi),iU tormmto (come in essa anima fu ({u't al /if cca re), 
tmkaia (non con&enle) che essa anima surga e si muova 

Uaany-s: "The will ever dcsirc» the ultimate and 
fofccteod, but the justice of God wills ^to be fully and 
Wiret)Mtis&ed). that as the sinner had the wil! (vvlonta) 
Hwind sinned, so he may have Ihe impulse [iaitnio) 
^Uft and may stay fur his subjucalion and purgation : 
tbtt l» taUmio is the will {volonta) itcundum tfuid." 
ICoorc (Textual Criticiftm, pp. 402. 403), remarks: 
iicaiy to imagine philosophical, moral, or t heologi- 
olsijwtioiisarisinglo the statement of Dante here (viz. 

^^•aLCf-h a anal Inttractive cofBRientary «n the idea of 
'*» htfc To OK uwlher Ariitctdian dialinction, wc may hay 
fclUi parcatorial ptintfttimcni prcscnls itself as actually <ic>ir- 
■jjl'MytAM,' or '<( i-itoJi-«nn. I'hc vnUi^htvneA uHJcnUtndiMg 
^•> tlut it i« nc* the c&Mmtial condition of, antl the only road 
VRi^necs and consequently thcwell- reflated wtUdcttircatt; 
'sou fjnienti 
Hd Noooi pcrthi iperan di venire, 
<^«BdB ch« ila. alle beaic Kcnti.'" (In/.i, Ii8-i2a) 

[r anim*] , po*la nclle rc^ii^ni delta verili, vcde chc 
Ti pu& acauidtarai nc nnn col palirc, clU dec avert il 
re. come Panic to ihiamn. dec vulctc il |>atife con 
vOn cqi vuni In hcaliturlinc : itnlo quamln nvnlcM 
rbnoada nnn puo piii volerli>, nun puo pui sentirl<\ 
rata ifl L'oltii al quale •' i pcifcltamcntc cotifiiunla." 
j^rtw^r, J >itu Ctrvki, p. ^o.) 

K 2 


Readings on tlu Purgalorio. Canto xil 


that tlie mere wish to pa&s upwards is a proof that tlufl 
soul's purgation is completed) if unqualified by a con' 
sidei-ation of the technical teaching out of which it 
sprung. There is an opposition between voglia and l»M 
lento — the key to the whole passage — which is excel" 
lently explained by Jacopu dclla Lana ... So again 
Buti : 'come ia voIontA rcspettiva (i.<. fn/fn/o) fu conti^ 
la volontd assolula a fure lo peccato (chc la volonta as^ 
soltita non pud volere lo peccato e lo male, se nun in- 
gannata sotto specie di bene); cosi 6 contra a volere 
bene, sc prima non v sodisfattoa la giustizia.' Tn oth< 
words: — In f/)i< Hfc volonta, were it noiioT lalnxlo, wou 
choose yutaShv, but it allows itself to be misled by talenio 
into choosing to ^aifo^yov a^ad'ov, ' i}*> Si, ei obroK 
hvx*, xafcQv' {Eth. ni, iv, 2). 

"Accordingly hereafter, in retribution for ihis. 

ionia has again to submit itf^'If to the talfnln. which 
'now chooses pain and punishment (II. 65, 66), and until 
the ' uttermost farlhinR ' ib paid, the voloitUi is compelled 
to follow the ialenio in choosing this purgation, instead 
of i7 sommo Bent {rayaBov)* When all is paid, Ih 
the vohntA is at once set free to aspire again to ii 
natural object, the talmto now no longer opposing i 
and the feeling that this is so, is proof that the purgati 
is complete: 'Delia mondixia soi voUr Ja prova.' " f 

• Thua w« r«adof tbe ftpiriinin ihc Seventh Cornice: — 
" Poi verso me, quxnto potevan fani, 

Ccrti si fcron. »cmprc con riguardo 
Di non uKCir dove non foucro anl." 

{Purs. Mvt, 
t Dr Moore f,Tt%t. Crii. p. ^03,} says that wc iiiiKhl then 
Bpply* the iinuuase of Virgil in Ph^. xxvii, 140 141 :— 
** Libero, dntto c lano I tuo «rbitrio, 
1£ bllo fora non fare « >uo ■ermo." 

Cinto ML Rtatiings m the Purgaiorio. 


And now SlalioK, citing his own case as an example 
htMorirtnaiion of \vhat he has said, tells Vir^l that 
tkonhquakc and the chant were on account of him. 

tA io che ton f[iaciulo > qtietta doglia * 
CinqucEcnto nnni c piii, t pur mo { scntii 
Lib«n votonlft rii mt|;lior soglta-g 

Per6 KDliMt il (remoto, e li pii 70 

Spiriti per to moote render lod* 
K quel Sisnor, cbe to«to >u gt' invii."— 1| 

Asd t, who for five hundred years and more have 
Wmthh misery, have but now fctt in mc the free 
w^fcri better Ephere. On that account didnt thou 
Mllteeatthqaalfc, xnd (hear) the devout apirita all 

*ivlit(or^«iu, meininjc the penally of the Avaricious in th« 

tsnni f fii : Stalius had been undergoing penance 

[Comkc i>f the Avariciout, tmt (or Prodigality, not for 

idoc itrall rnd in the next Ciinta, where we shall alto 

■ w) that before paH^int; his joo years in the cornice (rf 

.it had bad (o pa» 400111 the Cornice of Sluth, qooy^ar* 

■d- Suiiii* died 96 A.n. Danic suppoHCK his viBJon to take 

''*n'*i]0O. Couriini; yto jxart in Ihc Cornivc of Avarice, 40U 

r*n n the Cnmicc »( Sloth, 96 Ihc year a. n. that Slaliua died, 

pB^ which, deducted from 1300. leaveHjo^ years unaccounted 

^■ajritetchcmny l>c>uppoftcd tohav« pau«d in Anh-Ptirg^toty. 

• ^•ft Compare Inf. x. It :— 

*E tu m' Kai non pur nvo a cii diipoatQ." 
■*^J</:mit. 10:- 

" K chc parlnvi mn [.ombardo." 
|l{fcai»lhe name fiiven lo the diffctcnt degree* or *pherc« of 
Bcavn. tn Corwits is lor thone of PurKalory, and Giraat or Ctrthio 
' lk«t in Hell. Compare Par. iii. 83 :— 

*SI chr. cnnw n"i »rm di witlia in unj-lia 

Per qiseulo te£no. a lullo il rcKno piace." 

|<irlM(aiacr <■)■<) : Some take cht iat McuKtM, with the Mm« 

■ ^irita rendered praiie .... in order thai He may ipccdjlv 

I men up to Heftfcn," Hut 1 adopt the tnictprctation o( Bulif 

Comi, Br. Btanchi. rraticclli. and S4:jiti/fini, su., that tkt gh 

IB a prayer of Staliua to (jod that He u-iU soon gife the same 

: t» all the ipiriti in Purgatory, who h've united in offering 

I to Him for the UI>era(ion of Suiius himneIC 


Headings on tht Purgaiorio. Canto xxL 

over the mouni render praise to that Lord, Who soon 
may He speed them up (to Heaven)!" 

rjantc*s unceasing desire to know the causes of sue 
wonders, is completely satislied by these words 

Coal as disBC ; c pcr^ ch' ci ti godc * 

Tanlo del bcr quunt' i grandc U sctc, 
Non uprct dir quKnt' «i mi fccc prodc.t 

Thus he spatcc to ua ; and since one enjoys drinking 
in proportion ns one's thirst is great, so could I hardly 
describe how much he did me good. 

Bcnvcnuto says: " Nate that a drink is agreeable, 
so much from the quality of the wine, as from the dtfl 
position of the drinker; as for example, when Xerxe 
the mighty Persian king, had been ignominiously de- 
feated, and was timidly Hyin^, he saw, by the side c^-j 
the way, some muddy dirty water, and immediatel; 
stonped down and began to drink greedily: on hm 
soldiers expostulating with him for doing so, he said 
had never in his life drunk better, for he had never, t 
then, known what thirst was." 


Divisiott III, — Virgil now asks Statius who he 
in life ; but, before doing so. he tells him that tila 

* (I li Kodt: Oiobcrti noiiccs these wnrrin as siEnifKant o< ho«" 
intense Dinte's dcurc (or Turihcr infontistion hsd been. Olbcr-ai 
Rad: CotJ eii ditu ; t ptritfki u ^aJt. 

+ mi fftt projf: (toU nie«ns ptofit, advsnUgc. 
Compare Purg. sv, 41, 4J :— 

"io pcnaai, andando, 
Prodc acquiMar nvllc parole sue." 
ComivBrc alta i'ur. \'i\, 35-2; :— 

" Per non HuiTriti- Ma virli cbc vuolc 

Prcnn a nuv pivdc, quell' uom chc non nacquc, 
Dannandu s£, dannd lutia sua prole." 
Compare aUo C'mp. i. 6, II. 24. 25: "dka in Kcnerc,chc colall 
aono quasi beslie. alle qudli |a lagianc fa poco prode." 



Cuuixi. Reaiiitigi oh the Purgatorio. 199 

□ibntion has cleared away all difficulty of under- 
ttaa^Bgthc matters in doubt. 

Bil MTio PuKJt:— "OmMi vcggio U rctc* 
Cbe qui vi pifulia, e come «i icAlappiA.t 
Per chc ci trem«, e di chc congnudctc 

On chi fotti pi&cciali ch' io lappia, 

E percbfr lanit Mcoli gUciuto So 

Qui Mi, ncllc parole tu« mi cappia." — } 

fui itiy wise Leader : " Now 1 see the net that 
•cUJM yoa on thin spot, xnd how one can get dis- 
nlugied from it, why it (the mountain) tremble!) 

*'*a* U rrtt ('hi qui vi piglia : Htunnne Btaiichi paraphrases 
Ih)! *<tggo U cagionc chc vi Itiilticnc legali c prcaJ in qucslo 

t Kt k ff tM ■■ Etranonc Bianchi goes oo: **e come cotal reic bi 
■prt, (oBc li ckcc dal taUppio (ihc trap, the snare): cci6av\-ienc 
pa U iDClin di KiddUfarc alia giiiKli^ia divina." S<alapt>iare it 
Icntnl Iroin 1 privattve. and caUppio, which Blanc {Vof. Danl.) 
Atfmt batn tht Gciiiian iUfff, a flap, a valve. SUIUrt itlcuno ntl 
mt tffi i, n, to pul any one into a Urail. Compare Puki. Morgaaft 
M^ptrt, uii. 81^ :— 

"Ah credi lu, Orlando, ch' io non sappi 
Prr cbe cagiattt io v' abbi qui inviialt, 
C ((ncl the disic RinalJn n\' iivcappi [trntitartt mtJJ 
E *c di qui voi oon fusii pasrsti, ^ 

Efli cfMi ben piii It teal 1 calappi : 
Vm ueie nrlla irapiwila ioKabbiaii." 
* 1 a»ppi* ■- Scartaz2ini ob»«rvc8 that nearly all the Commen- 
r«aj« apved ihal this word in ilcrived from the verb cdf^re, 
Dwilaioi'* and di>tinclly not with the meaning oi cafin, ~to 
ratUKL" In the Vm. dtlUt Cmita it will be accn thai tAptT4 
•■(•ifiea ** to enter inin, to have rnum, plHte in, to inhabit, to 
: into ooraeU." etc. Compare Par. iij, 76: — 
■*Ct>« v«ilrat non e^pcrc in <]Uc»li jiri. 
Far. aril. 14. |j:— 

** Come vecgion le terrene mcnli 
7f on capere in iriangolo due ottiiii," etc. 
fiwipari alao Eloccaccia, llaam. Giom. vi. Nvv. tot " B tanl* 
conceirBonn ncl caalcllo. chc appcna vi capcano." Com- 
I Peirarch, part 1, Sfn. c«»x ;in lomc cdilions, 149) : — 
** IH qveUr pcnc t mia propriit la prima, 
Ardrr di t nnUe; c quanln i 'I dokc male, 
NA 'n pcnmcr cape, nofl chc n vent o 'n htna." 

SOD ReaJiftgs oh ike Ptirgaiorto. Canto XU. 

h«c, and «t what you all rejoice together. Now may 
it please ttice that 1 should know who thou wast, and 
let it also l>e contained in thy words to me, why thou 
hunt lain here for no many ages." 

Statius begins by answering Virgil's first question as 
to who lie was, and he doc» so much in the same 
fashion as Virgil In the first Canto of the Inferno had 
replied to a similar question from Dante. Virgil 
answered Dante " Nacqui sub JuUo," and only ten lines 
lower down is the name of Virgil mentioned by Dante. 
Here the same order is followed. Statius Brst sa%-s 
that he lived in tlie reign of Titus, and discloses bis 
name just ten lines after. 

— " Nel tempo chc il buoo Tito * con I' aiuto 
Del Mtnmo Rcgc vendicd Ic font, 
Ond' u&ci il !.angue per Gitida vendulo, 

Col name chc p\i dura c pit) onorn 

iira io di U,*' — rispoec quello spirto, 

— "Fanioso aaui, ma non con fcde ancora. 

Tanto fu dolce mio vocalc tpirtOit 

*ilhuon Tito: The atcge and destruction of Jciuiialrin unde 
the Emperor TiiuK, took place in a.o. 70. Statitu was born all 
Naples, according to one account, in 65. in ihc reign of the 
Emperor CldudinR, and had already become faraoua as a poet 
before the acct-'ssion of Tilut. Hit works arc the Sytva. m 
miscrllancouH pi>cms ; the ThthniJ, an fp«c in twelve books; 
and the A<kill('iii, of which he Kpeakii in 1. 91 a» bcinj; unfiniilied 
at the time o( his death. He alw wrote a tragedy, Aiitv<, wbkli 
is lost 

\ Tanto /m dolu mto votaU i^irUti Compare Juvenal, SuL 

"Curriiurad vocem jucundam, ct canncn amicae 
Thcbaidoff, laitam fecit cum Statiut urbem, 
Promisilque diem : tania dulccdinc capios 
Aflicil ille animos, tantaque liliidine vulgi 
Auditur '. <*cd, cum frcuil subiicliij^ veraii, 
Esuril, intactam Paridi nisi vcndat Agaven." 
Dante seems to have ranked Statiua a» a pocl neat to 
The vpiCM uf Statius were exticmely popular in the middle : 

Canto XII. Rtadings on tht Purgatttrio. 201 ^^H 

Qiet ToloBwio,* a s£ rot tnuc Kama, ^^^| 
Dove mcrlai klcmpicmruirdi mirtcf go ^H 
StazM la gcmc ancor <li Ift mi noma : ^^^^ 
CainUi di Tebe. e poi del gr^ndc Achillc, ^^^H 
Ha caddi in via con la icconda soma. ^^^H 

*At ibe time when the good Titus," replied (hut ^^H 
ipmt, "with the aid of the Most Hi({h Kin^, took ^^H 
Yengeancc for the wounds from which guHhed forth ^^^1 
t!te hlood sold hy Judas (i>., when God, by the hand ^^H 
of Trtus, avenged upon JcruHitlcm the murder of Jcatis ^^^H 
ChriM), was I (in the world) yonder, famous indeed ^^^H 
far the name which lasts lonj^est and honours most ^^^H 
(namely, a poet's), but noi »& yet, with faith {i.t., ^^^| 
Chnatianity). So sweet wan my Renius in song, thai ^^^| 
Rome drew mc, (though) a native of Toulouse, within ^^^^| 
her w&lU, and there it was thought worthy to have ^^H 
my brows decked with myrtle. Yonder (in the ^^H 
wocU) people still call me Statius : 1 san|; of Thehen ^^H 

I> m nsenrt tuticle in the EJiaimrgh Review (April 1S95) entitled ^^^H 

fk ClMticml SludUi k'/ ttantt, jip. y>j- J07, evidently written by ft ^^^H 

I^aitMnf thcfiiht rank, and whkh niciits the must careful »tudy, ^^^H 

At nt)r«rr write*: "Danle't trcalmrnt of Statiut conxtitulCB ^H 

<■* •( the mo4i sinp;ular prablcma or anornalieit of the Divina ^^^^ 

UM«irfi«. WV arc skitpiinci) at bin enlhui.iHi.lic, and, bk it appears ^^^^| 

t* a«. tacoawhai extravaf;iint udinirHiiun of a pcKl whi>Bc prolix ^^^H 

f|4 ofttn inSaicd ttylc is the very antipndca of hin nwn. We ^H 

■t*e already seen that, on oi>e occasion, he has &ubiti(u1ed the ^H 

olMafSlatiuafncthal of Horace, when lelcctinu the I^tin poctfi ^H 

1* »adcla of style, though in other letipccls repealing the well- ^H 

■*^a tt*l irt /■/. iv. Thii and other indicaiionn convirvce ub ^H 

■a* the oamc of Statius would have certainly been the next to be ^^^B 

**iuui tn tbc charmed circle of ia UUa xtwUi, were it* limilH to ^^^H 

ttfltanEcd." ^^H 

*TaiD«>a«L Panic has evidently confused Statiu* the |>oet, who ^^^B 

VV^Bti at Naplc*. wilh Slatiiis the rhetorician, of Toulnusc. ^M 

^*WB> hiuiaell' apeaks of Naplet aa hisi birthplace, but he docs 10 ^M 

B 'a*^ ^(m, one of his hooks which waa not discovered until ^M 

■ nt [hue's death. ^| 

H ^bpUi It Umfiitvrtiar rfi Mirfu: On thife Scarlaizini obaerves ^^H 

■ tkathntofy 1% BM known to have recorded the fact of Statius ^^^1 
|H ™K rvvwticd aa a poct ; nor indeed d»ca the present passage ^^^H 
^^H ****ntt: bat only that ht» muse merited such recognition. ^^^H 

Readings on the Pur^atorio. Canto xxt, 

und then of the great Achilles; but 1 sjink down by 
the w»y under the second burden. 

This means that he died before he had completed the 
Achiltfid, the second of bis works. Bcnvcnuto relates 
that Statius, seeing the great disagreement that ex- 
isted between the two brothers Titus and Uomitian, 
took as his subject for their instruction the historj- or 
the two brothers Eteocles and Polyniccs the rival kingv 
of Thebes. 

Renveniito sees two interpretations in the six I! 
that follow, according to the first of which Statius, u 
aware uf who is standing by him. would show that Vi 
was the mudelfrumwhum he became a poet : or second! 
that he became a Christian from reading Virgil's poem 
We will adopt the former, which is preferred by Be 
venuto, as we have no evidence whatever that eith 
Virgil or 8tatius had any pretence to be Christians. 

Statius concludes by showing the immensity of 
love for Virgil. 

Al mio nrdor for lerne * k faville, 

Che mi HCttldir, ddlji diHtna fiamm*, 
Omle Kono flllunuti ptil di miUe ; t 

*w<iM ; Al the concluiian nf the TMfbaiJ {Stt-HfjySiatmxtlh 
in wh«t honour he held the /EHtid. Addrcstinc hit ovrn pacm. '. 
*My% :— 

■* inihi biMcaot multum vigitatt per annoi 
Ttivkat? . . . 

Vive, prccor: ncc Im .4{nridn lenta, 
Scd latiKc Mqurrv, ct ve»ti|:ui itcnipcr Hdora." 
f iillmmali pin ifi milk : " ThcLOunllcss multitude," forwhkh,! 
often in the DiPtna CommtJia piit <fi mi!!/ --.\nnA'i I'i the e<]uiv-a| 
nitnris the K''c''' hnst of jtoelt^ of i*hi ' w>| 

jln /«/. 1, Sj-Sj, Ik alludu la the ct : < ' ttTL 

liindlcd both in htmneir and otliera by tli<; i:;iaiiiti|u ul Virgil ^■ 
"O dci;li ilin |x>(:li oiimc c luuic. 

Vn^liami il lungo studio c il j;r*n(Jc Rttiore, 
Che ni' ha fatio cercar lo tuo volume. 
Tu le' lo mio macirtra e il mio «alore." 


'anlo XXI. Readings on the Purgatorio. 203 

Ddl* Encida dico, la. qwtl fnammk* 
Funni, e (ammi nutricc pnctundo: 
Scni' csu non fcmnki pe«o di dramina. 

£, p<r esser vivulo di Ul qaand« loo 

Vi»c Virgilio, ksvcntirci un lolct 
Piii chc non d«KRio al mio uscir di bando." — 

The seeds of my flame were those speilcs of the 
oleBtitt] fire, by which more than n thousand (i.e., 
inomnenblc) poets have been cnkiadlcd; I mean the 
^nrii. which was my mother and my nurse in poesy I 
without it (as my model) I hsid not made stxtionaty 
(ta the scale) the weight of a (single) rlrachm. 
And to have lived (in the world) yonder, when Virgil 
lived, I would consent to one Sun 0^,, to one year's 
ptnftncc) more than I need perform before going fonb 
fwm haninhmcrt." 

Bntvenuto says that St at! us tried lo imitate Virgi) in 
ibeTirboiW, not oniy in the number of books [twelve] as 
wtte/EiifiW, but alsoin cvcr>ihing(i« owwiAiw), so that 

HL*Maa« .' Thia term of cndcarnvcnt to a mother t» in Tuaciuiy 
H^naceuMd by grown-up people Ihnn in the cme in Englan<t, and 
K^I^BO smns confined to infants and children. Tuinntaa£o 
P flh ri wgjo ibi 5i>«o«iwi, p. 766, Sin. 2591) obtcrves: " Uamtna. i 
WO ndtntile, ma non iNlcgnata da Uanic ; e I' usano anco gli 
*'(lli> wpialan^enCe qaando « volgono a Ici Ktnsa, o purlnndo 

, *Mi»i; This exprukion i> meant to lifinify "dHj-tro di mit," 
U'lTiiole year. It b used in the same sense by Cracco in in/ 

' Pot apftrcsM) convirn chc qticita Lat:Kia 

Infra Ire soli (i.e., wilhin threu yc»r»' timclk" 

^l^^cni rttnaris upon the marvellous cxprtaiion of a wish that 

wct bi« contrived here (01 ihepurpuHeuf painngan encomium 

""" I hli beloved Virgil. But fll course any one muM see that 

DMccpttnn ia «nly ho far true, in that it is uivd by way of 

Holt. Scartazzini nays that the Jctuits, and thoic Com- 

^ilitotk who were dcltaclorii at Dante, were highly scandali/cd 

;*tKchawntimrnt ' : , ititu ihcn ' Siaiiun, St*nax- 

^ints out htiw V : 1 Bat^on this pawa^c ' Of 

Itiftfaugmrtilii .mi. riu.iniBi, lib. vii, i . i : " LcgJiiius, non- 
el F.lecli* ct SanclU viri* opliU»c sc polius craKos c Libro 
qTiam utsaluA ad IratTcamos non pcrscnircl.ccalasiqu Adam 
civiutit et impotcnii desidcrio Boni Communinnis incitaloK." 

ao4 Readings an the Purgatorio. Canto xxi. 

[p^ ht was not undeservedly called Vii^JI's ape (tHMa 
Virgilij). flg 

Division IV. — We must now picture to ourse^w 
the scene that ensues, in which the rapid interchange 
of :iigns between Dante and Virgil, and the way in 
which these arc obsci^vcd by Statius, is related by 
Dante in a most spirited manner. The whole inci- 
dent is so thoroughly Italian, that one might, on read- 
ing it, fancy oneself in the Via Calzaioli at FlorencCa 
or the Mercatello at Naples. The last words uf Statius 
have cnnvtnced Virgtl (hat Statius has not the slightesal 
idea that the subject of his encomium is standing 
his side. Vir^l turns quickly round, and by a raf 
contraction of his eyes [con visa} imposes silence 
Dante, who cannot all the same restrain a smile on 
features. This Statius is quick to detect, and after' 
look of silent wonder, he asks for an explanation. 

Dante remarks that it is only the most sincere a^| 
inf^cnuuus people who arc unable to disguise th^'< 
emotions. If they feel a desire to laugh, the lau^S 
shows itself on their countenance, and the sameuri'S 
weeping. It is only the deceitful man wlio feigns 
smile while rage is in his heart. It is only the hyp^ 
crile who can simulate grief for some misfortune -* 
which he is secretly rejoicing. fl 

Dante then shows exactly how this difRcuIty ^ 

concealing his thoughts happened to him. for, ttioujf' 

he uttered not a word, he spoke by his expression. ««M|^ 

Statius detected his thought. 

Volscr Virgilio a mc qucUe parole 

Con VIM* cKc titccndo dissc : — " Toci : "— ♦ 

*Tm: Oiobcrti, ctxnmcnling on thta at leagth, says tl 
Ihinh* tbtt by thU vnri Virgil not only wished lo impede 

CsoitoXll. Readings im the Purgaiorio. 

Mb non puA tutto U viiii) chc vuole ; * 
Chi n«> c pia.nt(] ton tftnlo scKUact t 

AlU pB»ion da chc ciiacun si spicca,! 
Chc men ccguoa volcr nci piti vcraci. 

tMiBenn]; x word, bat even from tnikini; x «tgn ; for he knew 
vtawrn naitacity hnw quickly ihc Rraallcsit kign inif,'ht owkken 
■ifa^iocKift nf Slaiiun, who he vra« onxiou" should remain in 
Vnnccof his be ins that identical Virgil upon whom Slatiu^ 
M bteo pKMing ftuch hif^li cncomiunis. In descnhinK thit 
MdnQ^ en the part of Virgil, Dante htmaelf i*. in renlity pri>- 
*B«>ciii| even hifihcr praiicii upon him, showing him to have 
hri Ae oftiamenl of (hut huniilily, of which hixlury recuriii him 
• Hitn been posacMcd; and moreover in making Siatiueof his 
^nifnttit-metu pau these encomiums upon Virfiil, while quite 
KMIR that he «rafi ttandini; al hi« side. 

**Ntei tutto lit firiA tht ruiftt : Benvcnuto considers thtx a 
vrfitmll passage : "Et at) dcdarandara islam litcram foricTn 
^^mo nMandum, quod appctitua, alius est inicllcctivun, aliuti 
mbtm: clvensirivus, aliu» cM iraiicibilu,aliu»E;<n)i.'upiKcibil)S ; 
A tt^n^tum, quod ostendilur per riaum proccdit ab appetitti 
iWqtKibili; et planet us qui movetur per injuriam proccdit ab 
■*«i!i; ct ambo isli appetitun sunt dc pntcnlia M:nsitiv«, et 
■'U'Mqutnr altcruin. bt appclitun inlcUvclivun qui cnt voluntAS, 
''Kt^ann regulatur appctilufi tensitii-us. non lempcr est potcns 
*^ MRutivutn. quia noa Mmper irascibile, ct cone upinci bile 
'Nilnttnni. sivc rational) vctluntati, que est »uum fundament urn 
• mtllcciu." 

^ptifUatv . . . ugutui Alia pattitm. Etc.: Andrcoli cxplaina 
**««ieaninig that lau)thler and weeping do not ac I in obedi* 
^l* IB flic vrill, but follow directly after that particular modi- 
^"iw ol the mind Erom which each of them rcsiicciivoly 
'''Mtdt, namely laughter follows upon joy, and wccpini; upon 
*"»*■ PhiUUlhti obacrt-ca that St. Tnomah .Aquinas {Sumnt. 
«. i. j*«, qu. xvii, art. 9) alao aniimes that the move- 
tht body arc not all governed by the will, nor in (h* 
.11 thcMC which belong; tu the \-e);«tabIc iphcres. Each 
it moreover doea not pr'>cced from Ihc icnKiial or carnal 
*, nor docs ita origin always bci;in through the will; 
Bore frequently the limbt follow in the tinit mKtancc that 
~ iftdination which ii dictated to ihom by the ecntitive 

: Laui^tvr talteti itH origin in joy nr merriment, and 
takes its onetn in p-icf nr norrow. In the Gran 
"sfittani da an luogo di hm ptnatm, vaU Lauiurh, 
Ji'liKt-dCMH^." Compare /"/. xxx, 55, 36;— 



2o6 Rcadittgi on ttu Purgalorui. C^ 

lo pur Mirri«i, come I' uom ch' Hminiccii ;* B 
Perehfc V ombra si tacquv, c nKuardommi t 
Nec'i oechi, ove il sembiante pi^ u tic<:>.l 

These words made Virgil turn round to me wi 
look which xilenUy said: " Be «tlent! " but out 

"non (i til Taiici ^ 

A dir chi i, pria chc di qui si spicchL* ^ 
Buti CKpUins the u»c of ifktarti m the prescot paaM 
iapauion Jo (lit, cioi da la qu&ic, cuiswh ji jAicca; cio^ 
atli di sopri. nominala, it sf>icn; ciod, pnxMc al, coim 

'ammuca. Blanc {I'oeiiboliirio DaaUia') derives the wi 
the Latin Mic^art, to make a Kir;n with the eye«. (Hhct 
it from the Latin nictart, ainufart. Tommasto (Diiw 
Sinonimi, p. 961), Sin. jij?) naym: 'MmmiWar/. Kcbbene 
segnatamcntc 1' occhio, conipfcnde un (»>' 1' alto di lutta 
... Si iu(enma c con t;li occhi e col capo e coo le mani. 
acccnnarc bcnia amniiccBfc, ma n on vice vcrxa." 

t (^ r^unriuiFimt .- The edition!! of Mantua, Folicno, J 
Naples read "c" (or "et") before nguawdommi, whtd 
much better Hcnse. 

IgtioeiAi.ovf H ifmbiaale piit sifitta: In ronf. iii, 8, II 
Oamc U\Ti down that the c)e» arc the window of [he 
Yrhich all the passions can be abncn'cd, and sa^'slhat it t 
happened to itonie to put out their own eyes in order til 
«h<)cnc from within should not be »ecn without; *' E ( 
nella faccla. ma-isfinamentc in due luoghi adopcral' Anii 
occhi in quclli due liio);hi quasi tulte e trc Ic nature deli 
hanno giufikcli^ionc, cioi iicf;li okAi c nclla bocca), qtx 
nimanicnle adorna, c quivi pon« i' intenlu tulto a far I 
ruote._ £ in questi due luo^hi dico io, chc apparitoom 

ftiaccri. dicenoo : Kigii occAi e net hbm delct riio. Li qt 
UORhi t>CT belta sicnililudine *i powono appellarc baica 
Donna che ncli' edilicio del cotpo abita, cii>4 I' Anima, p 
quivi^ awegnach* quaf.i velata, spesse volte si dimo«tia. 
Ktrasi nef;h ocehi tanto raanifcala, che CDOo«cer si pui 
prevcnte pansione, chi ken la mira . . . Ondeatcuno ^i 1 
Kli occhi, perchi la vcii;of;na d' entro a<m [>are»»e di fiti 
DimoEliasi nella bocta, quasi siccomc colore dopo vtrlro. 
i ridtn,%t nnn una corruscaiione delia diletlatione dell' 
c'loi un lumc »pparenlc di funri Hecondo che i.ta dcntre 
Turther illuntnition. Tommaaio in hii commeiiixry que 
followini; words of the Jesuit Padre Scj^ncri, the autnog 
celebrated Quamtmnk itr aeries of Lcnlcn icrmons, prri 
Florence in 167(1: "L' occlitu, viaibile ntratlo dell' aoi 
viaiWIe." — 

Canto m. Reading on Utt Purgatorio. 207 

oiuKii perfbmi all that it vnuM ; lor laughter and 
KCtping follow so promptly after the passion from 
wtiidi etch tdkcs its rise, that in the most tmihrul 
men they least obey the will. Notwithstanding 
(ViTjil'i hint) I smiled, as one who mstkes a sij:n 
«f iotelli|r«ncr, whereat the spirit stopped speaking, 
kdoEdme in the eyes, wherein the expression is best 

Stuiuniikcs his petiiJon. 

E,— *'»etantoUveroin b«ne awomwi,— "* 
DtMC,— " pcrcbi la tua faccia icslcBot 
Vd iampegsiar di riio { dimostrotntni i — " 

: In Ihe Gnm DisiiM/irio it will be itcen that the 
P >!(nificalti>n of lUtDinauiiY, is to add up a Hum, to com* 
ti Ibetcc it takes the meaning, " to reduce the ideas to their 
*^Bim uf, i^, to coikIikIc '' ; and hence 'Intninaafn (one of 
Mkitton) says that the way is prepared far the signification in 
lkt|fticfd paasatte. namely, " CtmJurrt oi mriioni, /*r Finirt tiii a 
^'mfiaiaiarvle,*' i.». to bring to a GoncluRion or end. Cam- 

' t il tanio Scnc : ' Aeciocehi tu auommt 
PcrfeHamcntc,' diisc, 'il luo eaaimino, 
A che piego cd amor *nnlo maodommi,"* etc. 
tlokw: Another (nrm o( titli, an adverb of time pati, Dignify- 
"ihltlc while ai^o.juHt now." Compare Boccaccii^ D^mw. 
rii. .V<s'. in: '*tu non lentivi quel eh' io, quHndo tu mi 
: ItiloA I capcll)," ll h«H iiomctjmet a present meaning ; 
I i^m. ix, 16: "Tomorrow, about tliiH time (in unc 
iVRiion. this is,(i ^utW ora dt' i Utttto; in the Vulgale, 
I auii^ esl) I will send thee a man out of the land ol 
Compare alao xix, 7-10 :— 

'E ^rl che mi cnnvicn rilrai tcstcso. [at the praent time'\ 
Non pon6 voce mai, n^ scrisxe inchiottro, 
Ni fu per fantAsia ciammai compreao." 
°'^lH(tmir<m, Giom. ix, Hifv. iv, there is a sentence in which 
^«Tt kitao with ihc luMre acrie in a short time, and UsU with 
^^pMitai unic: " ERii dee venire qui tcMcio unn, che ha pegno 
(•■ilmrttoiicr tremottu soldi: ton certo ehe cgli eel render! 
WUiMi<n»i)iic, pagjindol Icftli." 
■ ' ''Mftjii^uir lii riw: Lamptggiart ia, properly i(|)caktng, an 
*"■!"« tiltmfinM. It la used here in the form of a aubitanltve : 


Readings an ifu PHrgatorUr. Canto XJ 

And, " So inaycsl thou bring to a happy cfMicIusion," 
eaid he, " all thy atduous enterprise, wh/did thy face 
just now display to mc a flash of mcrnmcnt ?" 

Dante is perplexed by the eontradictorj- injunctior 
his two companions. 

Or Min io A' una parte c d' alttii prc»n ; 
L' una mi fa tucer, I' altra icongiura 
Ch' io dies: onA' io soapira, e tono inlna 

Dal mio Macittro, * c :— " Non aver paura,"— 
Hi dissc.— " <Ji parlar; ma paila, e digli 
Quel di' ei domanda con cotanta cura." — 

and Scnrtazxini sayi that P«traRh and Tanm often aud it i 
that way. Compare Petrarch, part ii. Son. xxrv:— 
" Lc crcspc chiotDL- ij' or pure luventc 

B 'I tampeegiaT dell' angelico nvs," etc. 
And Trionf. Morte, cap. ii, ter^. 29:— 

" Appcna tbli' io ciucKtc parnkdittc, 

Ch' i' vidi lampcgi^ar qncl dolc« ri»o," elc 
And Tasvo. Gtr. LiUr. iii, st. 3x:— 

" LampcKcifir gli ncchi c folKortr gli sguardi 

Dtiici ncir ira." 

And Boccaccio ;£)«'<■■■■. Gioin. ii. Sev. ii): " Rinaldo qucslc parol 
udendo, c il lampcgpar dcgli occhi della donna vcggtndo,' cit 
And f>(van«. Glorn, iii, Sw. v : " Ma pur ki ri^uardando ncl viM 
e vcKiccndo alcun lampc|;i;iRlc d' occhi di lei vcrxo di ilcuna volti 
. , . alcunabuona speran^a presc." These quotationa are one d 
the numbcrlciiK iniitancca of the truth of the word^ of the wriltf 
of the article in the Editthmrgk Rcvum cited above, in a foomota 
at p. ^93: "ThcrriofijSofPdrarc^the . . . work* of Bo<c»«»0| 
. . . orAriosln. etc., abouni) in fragments of Dante embedded 1* 
the lanfpiage like fosLiils." Buti'a words nn the pauage we u^ 
diicuMinj! arc very lucid: *' Vn U>ii^q(fi«r di riw ; cio^una*^ 
mento dj risa : impcrft chc Dante fece come fa Io lampo, che »cwb* 
aprc r aire quando c»ce fuora, c p09»B (^cm) chiudc, C cual fee< 
Dante ; prima apcrsc Ii occhi a riderc mouo da paMJoflC, aveftd* 
allegrei/a chc tantn bene voleste Staiio al suo maestro YlipliO 
e poiita chiuHc per obcdirc Virjilio chc I' avea ammonite eW 

•r MHO inUso Dai mh Matslro: 1 much regret that the dl* 
crcfMncy »f reading in this pamacc in not amonc thOM trcaic^ 
and discut^scd by Dr. Moore in his Ttxttuil Criticism, but t folia'' 
him (in hii new edition of Dante'a Worka), Witte, andScarlauiii; 
in reading aa above. This i« the reading (says Scartanioi 


aoto XXI. Readings on iht Purgalorio. 


Now am I caught both on the one side and the other ; 
the one (side i.e.. Virgil) bids mc b« silent, the other 
(StAtiut) entreats me to apeak: on whkh I heave a 
ngh. and am understood hy my Master, and !i:iid he 
to Die : " Pear not to spealc, but saj' on, and tell him 
tiiai which he asks with so much anxiety." 

Bu^ ihinks Virgit had slopped Dante speaking berore, 
uu not to interrupt what Statius was saying ; but when 

iKiawSiatias look perplexed, he thought it wotild be 

kmderto tell him what it was about which they were 

aoAiag signs. 
Fortified by Virgil's permission, Dante gives to Statius 

th( ioformation asked 

Ond* to: — " Forscchc tu timararisti, 
Aniico apirto. ** del rider ch' io k\ ; 
Ma piA d' ammirazion vo' che ti piglL t 

tftflcd b; all the but Codices, and by the fi>llawinK Commenta* 
<n: iwM. I'utr.; Benvenuto; Buli ; Landino; Vellulello; Ca> 
"tTWiLde. But by firthclarecrnumber of CommcnlatHfs follow 
I* mianl adopted bv the Vatican and Caetuni MSS., e svnu 
*«»■ "t>t',' ii mio A^KJJrtt, "t UOH avtr ^ura," wi liiat. If 
'^"p Scaitai(ini) numbcre were always ri^hi. the question 
*<iUbe already decided. But mere plurality, in L-ancx likct these, 
■Mel the (lishtest importanee, all the Icm ho. thnt they that 
Wtrc* In ICC miiM have remarked hundreds and hundreds of 
•■n that CntniTicotators by no mc«n» unfrcqucnlly follow 
'^A other. C cii ckt fit la (•nma, t T aUrc /anno (/'urf, iii, Sal. 
^Mm the tautology of "DJ* — non aver pnura— paria — di|!li, ' 
bn titnei repeated would be insufferable. Scarta/J:ini thinks 
■W, ti it IS, ihrce times i* rather more tlun iiullicient. 

'■t«ii(o i^rfti. Bcnvenutu rcmarka that Statiuv may well be 
glW ancieni. since h« wrote poems morclhan a thouMnd ycar» 
Win; the uene here described is supposed to occur. 
^f*i>r Ammitaii^n vo' tht li pigU, 'ITiit nlmost reminda one of 
^■irit.^Mbony, who first nhowi the mob C«c>>ar'» mantle stabbed 
***v,uid then, suddenly plucking it aiiide, ahowi them the dead 

" Kind MKiU, what weep you, when you bul behold 
Onr Czatr's vesture wounded I l^ok you here, 
Here i* htmiclf. martcd. as you sec, by traitors." 

— Sbakcapcarc (jmtius Ctiar, act tit, sc. H). 

II. O 


Readings on the Purgatorio. Canto xxi. 

Qunti, chc guida in alto * gli occhi niicj, 

E qu«) Virgilio dal qual tu tn^lic^ti laj 

ForjM a cntar t dcKli uomini c de' Dei. J 

Se cagione altn al mio rider cre(l«ti, 
Lasciala per nnn vcrv c»scr, c crcdi 
Quelle parole che di lui dicesti." — 

Whereupon I : " Perchan« ihou marvellesi, spirii of 
days gone l>y, at ihc smile I gave; but I will that 
greater wonderment seize upon thee. This one, who is 
guidifiK my eyes up towards heaven, is that Virjjil fnrm 
whom thou didst gain iitrengih to sing of men and of 
the gods. And if thou dtd&t believe in any other cause 
for my smiling, abandon it as not bein^ true, and be- 
lieve those worde (rather) that thou didst apcal^ of 

Cesari (BelUxze, vol. ii, p. 3S7) points out the poetic ark 
with which Dante describes what took place upon the 
sudden disclosure of Virgil's identity. Doubtless St atius 
broke forth into warm exclamations of devout reverence* 
at the unexpected realization of his longed-for hopes ; 
but Dante has supplied the place of these demonstrations 
of affection by merely recording that Statius at once 



ScartHuIni conteodo that in atto means as f«r »■ Hif ^n[n~.i^ 
of the mountain, be)-ond which Virgil r<-pi]y^*n;in^ w,^.,... Tniiirt 
have no power to kO| and not as Bcnvcnutu intcrpicis it, «• 
meaning to Heaven. 1 agree, however, with Bcnvcnuio. 

i Porta a canlar : This is the reading adopted by Dr. Moorct 
Witte, Scartaicini, Panrani, Brunonc tlianchi, (jiobcrtt, Andrcoli, 
Blanc, and othern; following (tic 5U. Crocc, Cactant MSS., and 
eleven othen mentioned by Dr. Barlow. Some, inciudinit But^ 
read Font or Port*; but by Ur the larger number read Fori* a 
umiur, including Benvenuto and Landino. Ab Scanaz^ini poioU 
out( Dante ia miTcly n-eclioing the ttentitncnts expressed by 
Statius at I. 94- Statius never >aid tbat Virgil lauKht mm to sin); 
COMn^aouiiv, nor in d Uttd ton/, oor loftily ; he merely h*i said that 
he took from (lie Mtuid poetic fire, and style in Kib verse, a> is 
fully expressed by the reading Fona u caiUtr. 

I In the Th€baiii, Statiuti introduces both eodsand men as |ier> 
rorminK feats of anus, and therein imitated Virgil, who in his turn 
had imitated Homer. 


Cuito XX}. Readings on Oit Purgatorio. 


dropped upon his knees, or bent down, intending to 
embnure Virgil's feet as {in Purg. vii. 15) Sordello had 
done: (ire il minor s' appi^lia. Virgil forefitalls his 
intention, reminding him that they arc both spirits, 
and impalpable. Statiua makes a courteouti excuse for 
having forgotten their want ol substance, and explains 
that it arose from his intense delight at seeing before 
him the spirit of one for whom he felt such profound 

Gi& si chinavB * ad abbnicciar It pied! 130 

Al tT»a Uutlor : roa cfili ditae : — " Frate, 
Son far, ch4 tn se' ombra, cd otnbra \-edi."— 

Ed «i aurgcndo : — " Or puoi la quantitalet 
Comprcnder dell' amor ch' a Ic mi MCKldft, 
Quanda dismento X nostra vanttatc. 135 

*Giin cAnrva: Some Comincniatora, especially the Jenaiis, 

retnartia Globerti, find hull wuh llante (or representing Slaljus, 

a spint that had complclcd his purgation, and vas aJrcacIv on« ol 

tbc circt \o Heaven, iccurc of hi* salvation, thu« inclining him- 

•di b«6jre Virgil, who was cvcrla»iingly condemned to Limho. 

Wc nay however nnic that whatever Htatius may have been ^oing 

tndn, lie «n«b^ Virgil himself prevented from doing. ThespirilK, 

Mt l^ff|;atciry, were n<M auppoMd to be oinntHcicnt, and SiHtms 

•Wild art yet know that Viigil's fale wa* diffcrcnl from hik own 

UoMcdloL He hi« xinipl)- learned the fait thut Virgil ii before 

UBB.andii>on his way u|) ihc mountain nx Danlc'.t guide. Oio- 

bnt> adda : ~ 11 Vcniuri irova a ridirc in qucsta dimeniicanva di 

Stano; tteA ci vecKiamoper lacontrariouna natural incAmparabil 

WUua, a ufl moilo p«reKrino (un inttamt t>f singular bmuly} ad 

I Ufl Will oomc I' (mpnrvviKa novella mct(csa« Ktaiio fuori di li 

~~W)' cell McMo dichiara ncll' ullima leriina." 

*li fMUitiidjf ; Compare Coni>. i, 4 : "La fama dilata lu bene 
h ule oltfc la vera quantity." ScarlA^^ini tayt In 
i» used in ila ncholaiitic meunine, tbough I'ulello 
"^leaioiii the fact. 

I^MttJn: the flnin OisuMMrio w/» that dumuttun ia Ihc 
mtinyof ammailarf (to remember, not by recallinf; a thinic to 
o*^ ai»dL but by relaintne it there). Diunenio here i* a "Jtraf 
^ty^tmm," Lbcre bcini; nu other instance of the vrord in Dantc'» 
**iL Amntiit4itt occurs twice in the Divtua Commedia, namely 
^(- *". i*; and /*arg- xxv, 2*. 

O 2 



312 lieu4m^ Off the Pur^atoric Canto XXJ. 

Trattando I' ombre come com salda."* 

Already was he stoopmt^ to embrace m^ Teacher's 
feet; but he (VirRil) said lo him: "Brother, da it 
not. for thou art a shade, and a «>hadc thou sccst !" 
And he (Siatius) rising: "Now canst thou compre- 
hend the sum of the love which warms me to thee, 
when I cjin forget our emptineas, treating shades at 
substantial matter." 

TIici^ is a certain inconsistency in the way that Dante 
has dealt with the three episodes of the inlemewa of 
himself and Virgil with (i) Casella in Purg. ii ; (j) 
Surddlo in Cantos vi ami vii; and (3) with Statius in 
this Canto. 

In Purg, ii, Dante, a living man, tries in vain to 
embrace Casella, who. as a spirit, is impalpable to bis 

In Purg. vi and vii, Virg;il and Sordello, both impalp- 
able spirits, embrace each other without any difficulty. 

And now in the present passaf;e we find Staiius 

* TralLinilo r ombrt tomt coia tildn: On these last vcr«ci>(ijia- 
136) there is n very intcrcsltitE (ciraclntion by Giobeiti in iSij ot 
i>pininn» that lie bail previous^ cxpreaacd unfavourable to t>antc'a 
being a true Christian. Speihing of Chnstianit)' he had uid: 
"t>anle vcdcva it Critliancainia e la itui Scienza. con occhia 
umano, . . . scnjia xcniirnc In vera natura, cosa conceit&a nolo il 
veto Crliiliann, i/it-al f-nr Irflff^ hvh tra t>anU,'' Tliis \% followed 
by a noble recantation: "Mi ritiatta, i8j^.— Dante in tulto 11 
kuo pocma ( picno di vera c profonda relij^onc. Ebbc difcttlL. 
ma h temper^ : <: nan crederemo mei chc del *uo divina poeoite, 
far volcHac un tcatro di scortcai c vilt vendeltc, o dt orf^oKfiOi,. 
Nori nc cono»ce chc la eorlctciu (/A/ cuUr bark of Datite] chi ' — 
accusa di scimosccrc il Cristisneiimo c di trattarlo cun tat 

Eiofaua." Polctlo slludci to tbit. advisio): hix rcndcn to noCiCi 
aw a man in maturcr ngcand after more prolcufld slud>'. ma,; 
modify his judgiticnl, and he urffca them to tahc example fma 
ereat f;eniut lilce Oioberli, who, finding his npininna »o modifi 
had the crcatncif of mind to make a declaration of them, for fi 
that b>' not doin^ so he inigbt have done injur)' to hii neighboBr^ 
good name. 

Canto XXI. Readingt on tlu Purgaiorio. 


seeking to embrace Vir^l's feet, and on beings remin<lcd 
by him itiat they are both impalpable spirits acquiesces 
in the reproof as being deserved by his forpet fulness. 

This interview between Virgil and Statiux is one of 

the p3ssage*i qaotcd by the late Dean Church in that 

beautiful contribution to English literature, hia Essay 

CM Dsmlt, &s illu&traiive of the great Poet's descriptive 

power: " Nor is he \csn obKer\'3ni of the more delicate 

pbcnomcna at mind, in its inward workings, and its 

oooQcctton with the body. The play of features, the 

iaTolBntar>' gestures and altitudes of the passions, the 

poiKT of c)-c over eye, of hand upon hand, the charm 

ol voice and expression, of musical sounds even when 

not uodentood — feelings, sensations, and states of mind 

ntucfa have a name, and others, equally numerous and 

Cifully cotnmun, which have none — these, often so 

(■(jtive, M Uiifting, 5m) baffling and intangible, are ex- 

fRSMd with a directness, a simplicity, a sense of truth 

M oaoe broad and refined, which seized at once on the 

BB^^ial mind of his countrymen, and pointed out to 

IhBOi the road which ihcy have followed in art, un< 

aypnadted as yet by any competitors." (Dunte and 

OUttEaayi, Macmillan, London, iS^, pp, 171, 172.) 



Reading on iht Purgatorio. Canto xxii. 


Of PROniOAt.lTV-ANO HtS t.-OVVERSlON TO ciiRisirANmr 


At the beginning of the last Canto. Henvenuto stated 
that in it would be discussed the purgation of Prodi- 
gality in connection with the purgation of Avarice, 
but as a matter of fact Prodigality was not men- 
tioned at all until the present Canto. Here a^ain, 
in his opening words, benvenuto repeats the statemcni, 
saying : " As in the preceding chapter, our poet treated 
of the vice of Prudigality in the person of Statius, «o 
now in this chapter xxii, he concludes the subject of 
Prodigality in the tiaine personage, and enters upon ihe 
subject of Gluttony, which is punished in the si.Mh 

ticnvenutu divides the Canto into four parts. 

/« \h< First Division, from ver. i to ver. 54. Dante re— 
latv:> how he found thai his purgation from Avarice tiac3 
already taken place, and how- he Icams that it was (» a 
Prodigality and not for Avarice that Statius had t^ 

In the Second Division, from ver. 55 to ver. 93, Statius 

Canto mi. Readings oh the Purgatoric. 


informs Virifil, in answer to a question, that it was from 
Vir^l's Mrriting&that lie had learnt the Christian Paith. 

/n Uu Third Division, from ver. 94 to ver. 114, Stalius 
i»ka Virgil what has become of certain illustrious 
writers of antiquity. 

In Uu Fourth Division, from ver. 115 to ver. 15^, the 
Poets reach the Sixth Cornice, and the purgation of the 
tin of Gluttony t& described. 

Division I. — It would seem that, between the con- 
daiii«in of the last and the commencement of the present 
Canto. Dante had passed before the Angel of the Fifth 
Camicc. who had erased another P from his brow, so 
that two only now remain apon it, the P of Gluttony, 
aad tbe P of Sensuality, which will be erased in the 
Siitli and Seventh Cornices above. 

Tbe three poets, Dante, Virgil, and Statius, appear to 
hate already entered upon the stairway leading up to 
the Si«h Cornice. Dante tells us that they have left 
tbt Angd behind them at the fool of the steps. 

OU en I' Angel retro a noi rimaw, 

L* Aflgd ch« n' «v«a vjiti 4I snto giro, 
A«'cndi>iiii da] vi«i} un colfw rato : 

B luei cb* hanno a giuttiiU lor di»ir9 

l>vtto n' «v«a * BnUi, c hi >uc v&ci 5 

'■^"M.- Scirut/tni kars thai this is one of tllc passages Itiat 
■■^htra lembly tortured, tint by the amanuensex, tind then by 
y wntn U lor*. The v*n«ti<ma >n the rc<i(lui£ nic many, but 
^ »n« comntOA ahcmativc rcJdinK is in' at-^an, which would 
^h tfcu It irat not the Angvl, but the ipihU ol (he I'ifth 

PMiiia lor 4uirn." Hut luch an intcipTctati'xi uould mmtity 
■■biyifcc beautiful ■ymmrtry ai the poem. Whde cvervwhorc 
l^t a the Aii((cl ("'■^'"K the ciii who, whm diiniiuiin); Uic 
^"^ti MMlft, ciunt> the appropriate Ueatiiudc. according tv the 
■, itic An{cl in ttut Cotmce would be inxtc to act 

2i6 ReaJutgs on Iht Purgalorio, Canto 

Con liiimnt,* tens' altro, zH (orniro. 

difTcrenlly. and lo dIIdw the travellen tu tlcpiirt unnoticed by htai. 
Dr. Moure {Ttxlual Criliiisftf uys it p^ge 4(K: "th« rieht 
reacting ii' avM {unless I am mistaken) tu not found in any of the 
CATlicr Com rncnta tors, yet it has cnnvdciabic support atnoni; the 
MStj., bcinc found in about lialf those c;utininrd . . . Still oo 
fuller and wider conitidcralion. both of context and paralld 
piuBaKes, nvm w:H, 1 think, prove to be decidedly more appn>- 

'si'tiMDf : Dr. Moore (ut sii^ra) remarks ifiat the reading 
sitianl ix almost entirely devoid of MS. aothnnt^. only about 
aix inElances being known to him, one of which is in one of the 
Vernon MS& On (he other hnnd the rendin}: sith was (ouad 
in about 170 MSS. He observes: "Now no one can doubt ibe 
unity cf plan and method, not only throughout the whole poenii 
but niso in each of its three grcal divisions, and this unity of 
plan is nowhere more marked than in the circum«tancc« of 
mnte's itaetaKC from one CoraUt to another of the PargMUrio. 
In every ease the Angel in charue of the Cornice remove* one 
of the xcvcn P's thai have been impressed on his forehew^ 
tcavins him lighter for his upward journey. In every case al«\ 
JRittinK out nlKiKht fur the moment the prexcnl passage, i.t. in 
na cases out of seven, this act is nccompanied t>>- the recitation 
of one of the Beatitudes from St. Mull. eh. v." These sis casca 
ore Purg, sii, no; xv, j8 ; xvii, 68; xix, yj; xxiv, 151; and 
xxvii, 8. The anatni^y therefore requires that in ihc case of tbe 
Fifth Cornice hIeo the Angel should dismiss the Poets with a 
Beatitude. The words of the full text of the Beatitude (in SI. 
Malt. V. 6) src : " Beat) qui csuriuni ct liliunt (no4 hVmi) iusti- 
ti*m,"ctc Dr. Moore (p. .407) continues: "Wc may then, I think, 
take it for eranled, (i) that the quotation is certainly a licatiiudc ; 
and (i) that it is probably spoken by the Angel Kuurding the 
ascent: and conMquently we should ccrlainly read iitiint. and 
most probably also atfn . . . The reference tp- 409) to the licati- 
tude is here obscured by the somewhat awkward way in which the 
words Ditto n' tuta break into the (quotation; at'm by the in* 
version of order which makes lUtiii come last instead of, as 
usual, first ; also by the fret and altered form in which the 
quotation is made, and the mixture of Italian and Latin in ii; 
and finally by its fracmeniary charnrter. On this latt point a 
few words may be added in uonclu.nion. In order to supply the 
rv<)uired number of ;ippropnaie HeRtiludcs tor the several Car- 
nifi, this one hid to be divided, and a aepiiaiion introduced 
between * hunccriof:' and 'thirsting' after rightcoti»ncsB. The 
former is ^e»^^^■ed for the Sixth Cvrnitf, where it affords a 
natural contrast to the sin of Gluttony, while the latter oHera aa 
equally natural antithesis here in the Fifth Ci>rai» 10 the tm tit' 

Canto xxit. ReaJingi on the Purgaiorio. 


informs Virgil, in answer to a question, (hat it was from 
VirRirs writings that he had Icamt the Christian Faith. 

/m the Third Division, from ver. 94 to ver. 114, Statius 
asks Vir^l what has become of certain illustrious 
writers of antiquity. 

In tht Fourth DiWm'on. from ver. 115 to ver. 154, the 
Poets reach the Sixth Cornice, and the purgation of the 
sio of Gluttony is described. 

Oivisicm I. — It would seem that, between the con- 
clusion of the last and (he commcRccmcnt of the present 
Canto, Dante had passed before the Angel of the Fifth 
Cornice, who had erased another P from his brow, so 
that two only now remain upon it, the P of Gluttony, 
and tbe P of Sensuality, which will be erased in the 
Sixth and Seventh Cornices above. 

The three poets, Dante, Virgil, and Statius, appear to 
hav-e already entered upon the stairway leading up to 
the Sixth Cornice. l>aiite tells us that they have left 
the Angel behind them at the foot of the steps. 

Qiit era r Angel retro a noj rimavo, 

L' An];el chc n' avea v&l(i kl Ksto giro, 
Avcndoiiii d«l viae un colpo rjiso : 

B quel ch' hanno a iiiuslim lor dbira 

Detto n' av«» * Btali, e le sue voci 5 

ViMt; Scanouini sa^rs that this is one of the paauKcs that 
I wrcbMS lembly tortured, lini by the amanucnscN, and then by 
KtMCMtncntatofs. The variatlonti in the reading are many, but 
I'Mont common altemstivc reading in m' avtan. which wootd 
fft^ >Aai it wa« not the Angel, but the ajiiiiis of ihc Fifth 
Wbcc, who pronminced the words, " Beoli quci i:h' hannn a 
ywi /ia lor difiiro." But Kuch an inicrprctalion would simply 
•ocny the bcaaliful aymtnelry of the potin. While everywhere 
tiwd a the An^cl guaTding the cxil who, when dismiBMng tbe 
ftnitri aoula. chania the apjiniprtatc Bculitude, according to the 
*BdBi; *' KMdii, the Angel in this Cornice would Ik made 10 act 


Rtaiingson the Purgatvrio. Canto xxit. 

this Scarta2zini obsen'es that tliese lattt words imply 
that as tlit-re are seven Angels, into whose mouths Dante 
wishes to put a Beatitude, he finds himself obUgcd to 
leave out from this text the words, " Blessed arc they 
that hunger," " litali qui tauriuut" which comes in very 
appropriately In the next Cornice, where Gluttony is 

Dante having been disburdened of live out of the 
seven mortal sins, of which the emblem8, the seven 
P's, had been traced on his brow, describes how relieved 
he feels. 

£d io, pi& lieve * che per I' sttrt foci, 

W xrxUva si, chc mfim alcun laborv t 
Scguiva in ku gli »piriti vdoci ; 

*^'il Hdve: Compare P-r^. iv, SS| wheie Vir]^l, in answer to 
Panic's iiiiiuincs as (o the ascent, replica :— 

"Quc«lamoniAf;na t tale, 
Che Hcmprc al cominciBr di sotto i grave, 
E quanta uom pifi va tru, v men fa ■naJe," 
and P-rg. xii, lii, where Dnntc comiwre* th« Comicca of 
?uiKalor>' to those of the Cirdea of Hell. 

"Ahi I quanto son divcnc quvllc foci 

Dalle infemali ; chi quivi per canti 
S' cnira, c laggifl per lament! fcroci." 
fUibon: A primitive word from the Latin, u»rd tnMcad of 
lavon, and ban the niKnilicalion of faliKuc. Uuntc makes use 
of it in Conv. n. i6. IL 39, 40 : " e« non icme labore di studio e lite 
di dubiUtJtioni." Compare aUo Par. xaiii, 5, 6:— 
" V. per Irovar \o cibu ondc 1i pasca, 
In che ■ ):mvi labor ^li oono nf^pati," 
It waa much used by the early Italian wnlcra. Compare Brunctlo 
I.alint, Tavrttio, cap. iv (uu»ted in Nannucci's Ttenca dt' tftMi, 
p. 108 ; and by the Gnin lh:ionaru>) : — 
'* Ma tuttu mil) laborc, 
Quanto che io I' alltimi, 

Cimricn chc di consuffii;" 
and TnorHIo, cup. vii : — 
"Volse tutto lubore 

Kinir ncllo migliote." 
Compare altro faiinutcio dal Da^no {Porii M Primo Sic«lo, 2 vob. 
8va, I'ircnzc, i8ib, vol. r. p. J87) i — 

Canio xxn. Rtadings on the Purgatorio. 



^And 1. more light.rooted than through the other en- 
trances, was walkJnf; on, so much ao, that without 
mny dtalrcss I could fotlow upwards after those swiftly 
moving spirits (Virgil and Siatius). 

Bcnvenmo remarks that Virgil now addresses Statius 

ia a. few noble words, and, to win his Kood graces, 

pnEftces his remarks with a noteworthy opinion about 

lianoiirable love. After laying; down this opinion on 

the Ttciprucily of love, Virgil proceeds to tell Statius 

Out, though only knowing him by lieanay from 

luvtntl, whom he had met in Limbo, he had loved 

lum Ear many centuries, so that, now that he has met 

Win, ih« ascent of the remaining stairways of Pur- 

ptoi)' will in his company be but a light task. 

Quando Virgilio comincifi ; '' Amorc,* lo 

Accrwi di vinii, t Ktnprc altro accesc. 
Pur die U fjamma bus i>arc«M: fuorc. 

Osdci dall' oia che Ira nm ditccK 

"Ha quci, the men u tragga in vcr valorc 
Son si nr|,'hin:a in cwcn^ia, ov' invcKli. 
Clie »a diviia da vcf o laborc ((oolnote exfilain*, '/at'ie^ V' 
Amttt , , , uuifrf itlira iKteu : Compare Iij. v, loj: — 
_ "Amor, chc a nullo amatn amar pcrdnna." 

'^1' comiiKfits: " Turcht uppia I' ainato cMcr aroato inconta- 
""^MA." Virgil states this proposition in order to show that 
^'Jjuhni; of the »ritint;s of Statiua, in which admiration for 
^'d a expccucd, he too had felt a sympathetic touch ol lore 

.''lAai' iTi rtrld; "From thi» we ace that wc often love a 
'^'•wi man, even though we hove never seen oi known him, 
P*** I, ttenvcnulo. iovc l)antc, who is dead." (Itenvcnuto.) 
*^<t)trch cip(e«>cii ■ like idea (pait iv, can/- li, st. 8) :— 
" r>ig|i : un chc non ti vide ancor du ptcssu, 
-^ Sc mm uonic per (ama uom s' innatnora." 

** -liKw. Fior.: "(^ucllo antoce ch' i impreio da vittii ha lanto 
***^ ■' elli appare di lui al<uno Mcno, ehc ^li eonvlcnc 
'''OilcTt nello amnto nmuic invcrso qucIIo chc coni prima 



Readings on the Purgatorio. Canto 

Nel Itmbo dcllo inferno* Juvcnalt ,t 
Che I& tuB affcsion mi fc' palesc, 
Mia benvogiienxa [ invcrso le fu quale 

Piii MririKC m«i di non vtsta pefsona,^ 
^ ch' or mi iMirmn corle i|ue>tte scale. 

When VifK'l becan : " Love, kindled by virtue, hu 
Always enkindled another (t.«., a icciprocal lovcj, 

* limbo ttetle viftmo : Compare St. Tlioin, Aqntn. Summ. 
pan tii.suppl. qu. Ixix, art. f,: "I.imbu.n vvt est iilemqijod infcrn 
Ml «t pars infcrni ... Si ergo conKidcrentur limhus patnim 
inliernuii secundum locorum qualitatctn ptxdictam, sic non c»t 
dubium qu6d distinguuntur, turn quia in inferno c»l ptcfia scn&i- 
bilia, qux run I'lal in limbo patnim ; turn ctiam quia in inferno est 

[losna letcrna; scd in limbo pairum driincbantur sancti lempora^^ 
iter tantilm. Sed >i concidcrentur quantum ad litutn loci, «i^| 
probabilc c»t qu6<l idem li)cu», vcl quasi cnntinuus, sit infcriu^^B 
ct limbuii) ita umcn quid quxdatn uipenor para infemi, limbui 
painim dicatur." 

ijuveuiiie : Many read GioticnaU. Giobcrti obscrvei that I>anic 
would Bccffl In place Slatiut before l.ncan ; since he ninkeu Vii^il 
nay that he loves SlatiuK more thtin any mhcr poet, bciidei givinf; 
to Stalius nnd not to Lucan the honchur of lliis beautiful cpi>>odc. 
Scartazzini remarks that Oantc would name Juvenal, both becaunc 
he WAS an admirer nf the Thtbaid, and also a contemporary of 
Statius; but the truth is that, althouch Dante was acquainted 
Willi Juvenal's writings, he does not seem to wish to bcstotk upon 
him cither praiae or cenKure. 

\ btuvagliomi, a «-ord which can be apcli in seven dif&:rent 
vray\ is says the Gran Dixiouario: " piii c men dell' alTetlo.C 
pio manifcita ; e temprc e men dell* amore," "The Dincimiit 
quotei' the following from the I'UcwJia Morale of Francesco Mana 
itanotti, the celebrated liolo((ne»e philMupher, 1695-1777: - L* 
bcncrolenza non i amici/ia, ma i principio di atnicixiOa" cC alH 
Arioalo, Off. Fur. xxxxi, at. 27 : — 

" i r un fiammn c furore, 
L' allro bcniwlenaa piG ch' amore." 
g n«n fuJrt/vrnwM : Compare Ckcro, Dt Amirilid, cap, viii, 
from which Danic may haw taken the ideas expressed in the 
prenent patitaice : "Nihil est enini amabiliuK virtule ; nihil, quod 
maKiaalliciat ad diligenducn : quippc quum. propter virtutcm et 
probitatcm. cos etiam, quo« nunquani vidimus, quodam modo 
diligamu*." And Pctruich, Trion/o iW/' /< niw, cap. it, tcra. 
"Ma tua fama real per lutto agKiungc, 
E tal che niai non ti vedrik ni vide. 
Con bel nodo d' amor leco congiunge." 


Canto XXII, R^aJings on the Pur^alorio. 


pravided only ihal its flame appear oulwaidly. 
Wherefore, from Ihc hour ihat Juvenal, who made 
me acquaimed with thy affection (for mc), descended 
into the Limbo of Hell, my good will towards thee 
has been such 8s never hound me before to an unseen 
pcr)>on, to lhat now thexe stiiirs will appear nhorl to 

VirpI docs not appear to mean that he had hitherto 
lound the a&ccnt toilsome, but only wishes to express 
hU regret that he wilt not be able to go beyond the 
summit of the stairway of the last Cornice, and will 
oKiscquentty have ko short a time la pass in the com- 
ptn]r of Statius. 

Beavenulo says that Virgil, having addressed the 
abmc graceful words to Statius by way of prelude, now 
v^-i bim how it is po:>&ible that he can have been guilty 
ol the sin of Avarice. 

tl* dimmi, e come amico mi pcrdona 

Se iroppa ikurtb m' allarga il frcno, • 
G come amico omai mcco raj^iona: 

Come potA t irovar dcnirt) a) tiio Kcrai 


*<itllmr^ il fnmo: Petrarch unn the words in Ihc same 
l)« wns* in CmiKme i (in some editions iv), st. 5:— 
"Allc lacrimc trinlc alUrK«i '1 (icnn, 
B lasciailc cadcr come a lor parvc." 
^OmiftU, etc.! Scanaxzini thinki thai Virgil's mistake was 

SMIiwal. The Poets had heard from Adrian V that in the 
^^^ Cofnicc wan puninhed ihc iiin of Avarice. I'nr^. xix, uS- 
KKT, SlaltuH, in Parg, xnt, 67, has lold ihcm Ihit he had lain 
ICorriitc (or live centuries. Nothing had been said about 
.ility being punished there, and Virgil consequently took it 
^ (nnicd that Avarice liad been one of th« sins of Statius. 
Altai in hin (nar^inal note*, quoted by Biacioli, says (hat Dante's 
ain in these words was to »lio« how utterly impossible it was thai 
A*UKe, the most i);noblc of all vices, could ever abide in any 
•oUeinul, much less in Ihat of a distinguished writer [IttUtato 



ReaMn^ on the Purgalono. Canto XXtl. 

l.x>cn Mvarixitt, tra cotsnio senna * 

Oi quanio^ per tua cara, t (otti fnenu ? '* 

But tell mc — and as a friend rorKtveme JrinogreaT 
freedom loosens my rein (of spcccK). and henceforth 
converse with mc as a frirnil— how coutd Avarice 
hnd a place within thy breast, amid wtsdom so great ^ 
as thou wast filled with hy thy dili^nce ? " ^| 

Statius cannot forbear from smilinR at this misapprc* 
hension on the part of V^ii;gil, just as Dante had pro^_ 
viously laughed at that of Statius. H 

Questc pnrolc Stazto mover fcnno zj 

Un poco a rise \ |>ria ; pnscia risposc : 
— " Ogni tuo die d' amor m' i cato ccnno. 

These words made Statius smile a little at first ; then 
he anKwered ; " livery saying of thine is to me a 
chcri&hcd loWen of love. 


Statius says this because Vir^gil had asked him for 
pardon, if he used too much freedom in speaking about 
his supposed Mn of Avarice. ^_ 

Renvcnutu obscn'es that, after thiK preliminary wH 
mark, 8latiu:i commences his speech, and doc» so in 
a style which one cannot sufTiciently admire, both from 
its artititic merit, worthy of so great an orator, and alio 
as being quite after Virgil's manner. He says it often 
happens that things which arc perfectly true arc not 
believed, from ignorance of causes. It seems incredible 
that, under a clear sky and on a tranquil sea. a ship 

*lr« teUintv MUM : Compare In/, iv, 103 : — 

" Si eh' io (ui aeato Ira cotanto senna" 
t fitr lua tun .* " Scnno nnn xnln naluialc, ma coltivalo da sludii 
oneMt." (TommaBio.) " Pcrcht II scnnoc la scienu non vengon 
da tit, tna »iacquistanopcrmdcfcsioBtudio." (Brunonc BianchL) 
I movtr fttino V- fMO a rito : Conip«rc Pnrg. iv, lai, taa: — 
" Gli atti auoi vtfji, e ic cortc parole 

Mowon Ic labbra mir un poco a riso." 

[Canto XXII. Readings on the Purgaiorio. 


ihould suddenly go lo the bottom and not be seen 
again : and in the same way the statement made in the 
last Canto, that Titus attacked Jerusalem to avenge the 

§ death of Christ, is false. Titus made war against the 
Jews on his own account. Statius then deals wilb 
Villi's misapprehension, and lie immediately shows 
where the mistake lies. 

Vcrsmcnie * pii^ volte xppaion cone, 

Che danno a dubitai falsa matcra, 1 
Per le \«re lagior che sionn ascose. 

La Ilia doitunda tuo crcdcr m* a^'vcra { 


* VmmmUf et scq. : Compare Tennyson, JdylU of the King, 

*0 purblind race of miicrAble men. 
How many anion); us at thia very hnur 
Do forge a lifc'lang trouble Tor ourHclvci, 
Bjr taking uuc (or (aliic, or fal&c for true; 
Here, Ihro' the feeble twlhKht o( Ihin w.irld 
Groping, how many, until we pau and reach 
Tlial other, vrhetc we see as vrc are seen I " 
^maurt : Used by the early Itntian prose writer*, an well at by 
llhtpmt, (of m^ena. Nannucci (TurUa dd A'uini, p. xii) qtiolcn 
''ttsnoaerrf the many words that Dante is crroncnitniy supposed 
ti Iwt thereil arbitrarily for the sake of the rhyme, a (act whivli 
Viaawci tndignanily dcnien; and after proving hiit point, by 
<)*o(ing inttanccii in proae of the ufic of each of these words, he 
*^: "P'd cccadimoKtrato pcrqucsii escmpi lee il noslro povta 
fanciinto dalla rima, iiuome mantanlt <ii Mna fmetua t d'\ fom- 
A"". tfMmiersi dilU n-regolari lutait >i danno € a frtgiuJitio dtUa 
'■afMnh/friKM ^(to, come il Kignor Cannnico «entcnziava . . . 
Bt U concluBione * quetita. ch« non v' ha ncssuna voce fra le 
IntGche i Commcntfliorl dicono umIc in ^rnilc dclla rima, chc 
MB mi ail venuto fatto di rinwuiria Jitori di rimu, e la pifi parte 
Atneanchc in prosa." 1'hc Canonicn relcrred to va* Morctti 
■1k^ IB hi* prcbcc (o n I'utggii' in Trrra Saritii di Ser li/itriana tli 
"■M^kad dared to write in such disparaging lenna about Dante. 
[ •* MMra : Cumparc Purg, sviii, 34-36 :— 
*' quant' £ lumcoaa 
La veritadc alia ^cnle ch' aweiit 
CJAccuno amurc in s2 laudabil coaa." 
T* Ifeia quotation the Gran Dizionario subjoin*: "Itt Toscana 
dkono : ' U'i atBlo avrcrato chc . .. OXcna Ai A itntrMo),' " 


RegJings om ilu Pttrgalorio. Canto xxii. 

Esscr eh' Jo ftHsi ftvaro in 1' Mira vita, 
Fomc per quclla ccfchia dov' io cr«. 
Or Bsppi ch' avarizta hi partita 

Trnppo da, me, c qucsta Hlsmiaura 3j 

Migltain di lunari * hanno punits. 

Oi^timcit indeed thinic* appear, which aFTofd &lsc 
matter for doubt, because tbcir real causes are hidden. 
Thy question convinces me that it is thy belieF, per- 
chance from that Cornice where 1 was, that I was 
avaricious in the other life. Know then that Avarice 
was too far removed from me, and this excess (i>. 
Prodigality) thousands of months have chAStiaed. 

Buti remarks that, instead of hoarding (he things he 
ought to have given away or reserved, he gave away 
both the things he ought to have given away, and also 
the things he oupht to have reserved. 

Statius now goes on to relate thai it was a passage in 
Virgil's writings that had wrought an amcnilmcnt in him, 
and then, havinj; (juotcd the words of Virgil, tells him 
how rellectiori on those weighty lines inlluenccd his life, 
for he then began to understand that both Misers and 
Prodigals have a liinful thirst for gold, th»ugh with the 
intent of using it in opposite ways; and that they oftcQ 
seek it by sinful fraud, or violence. 

* Siiglittia Ji luimri : StatiuH died a.d. qfi, which, deducted tram 
A.p. I joo, Irnvcs laOii years, of which, as ue noticed before, h«hul 
spent joo in the Cornice o( Avarice ; 400 in the Cornice ol Sloth ; 
and 304 in Anlc-Purgstory. Total, 1204 years: 14.(48 calendar 
mofllns. Lunari is, navathe Gram Dixiciaria.n «ubst«nlivc. ilUmfU 
tUi ttfrto JtlU luua. ttuti cotnmcntini; on (he prcbcnl ptuusn 
writes : '' Lunarc «i chiamn una tnno^aiione di Luna, che « fn in 
Tcnxcite (27) di c ore nuve, cioi che la I.uns compie di piaie lut- 
to'l zodiaco." Compare Giov. Viliani, Criwucii, jti. cap. ii : ■■ E nd 
comincuiniento c Rr-indtf parte di quetio lanare dinan/t a1 diloviu 
furono grandi pto^ee in h'ircnzc c in multe pArti, c questo fu secno 
del futuro diluvio. Notwithslandinf; Buti's aucnion, the true 
period of the " lunation " is alwul v^ imy%. 


ito XXII. Reattinga on the Purgalorio. 


C sc not) foese ch* (a drizjai * mu con.t 
QoaDdo' io int«u ] \i dove tu CHcUnic.f 
Cnicciato quasi alf umnna natura: 
' Per chc ,1 non reggi lu, o Mcra fame 


*Jritiai: Both Jrittar* and Jtritaart c«n ftigniry, aa here, to 
tnakc ilraight (riifpiMfdr^, fi.irrfggtre, ittJirisjutre) to amend. I n the 
pieKDt pastMKc it means fui drUU mia cura, I made straiKht, 
amended, my real, which before had been crooked, i.e. misdiTccied. 
^^^mpare Pvtg- xiiii. 1*5. 126;— 
^^^K " Salendo c nj;irando la monlaf^a 
H^V Che drixzavot che il mondo fece torti." 

■ (*•'• which makca Mraight you whom the world has made crooked), 
f t Mia cura : Buti inlerprcti cura, " i mict pcniiieri " ; Kraticelli, 
'*rta<t coiiieitBo" (thin I have adopted): PhUaUlka and Witte 
*• Be%treben " ; Lubin "inclina/ione " ; and Licaita (personally, 
who a|[Tee> with Fraticclli, told mc) : " rcctiiicd my condocl." 

\ imUti : itUniitri haa a vant number of Hi|;nilication» — the prin* 
cipal of thc« are "(o hear" and "to understand." Both thefie 
aiB iwed bv the different Commentators. Witte tranalateii ieii Ui, 
hvt I can £od no authority for that bh a literal trantilation. Tom- 
mtata {Diiianario 4<i Sinon, p. X47, Sin. iioi) writvs : SnUnJere 
T^ICvarda. piii ^pccinlmcntc, il signiflcato dellc parole," and at p. 
lOJi.Sin. jj8o ;"/H/f«J^«, veramentedel sensodelliparolaudita. . , . 
& fab ndtri an discorto senia inlendcrlo; ai pvA udire sen/a voter 
laUnderc, pcrchJ tulunt diapreizano come non intclligibile tuHo 
^mUo cht iM>n piace loro," 

I'm U tuUmt : There b a ^ccful courtesy in Statiua quoting 
a (MiiC'e from Vircil'* own writings, and (cIlinK htm the influrncL' 
it lad upon his tile. It reminds one of Caai'lla the musician, 
ncilioncd in ihe second Canto, who, when atkcd by Dante to 
gwfcrt bra aaol with »ong, after the bodil)' and mental prnmrstion 
■vfcll (ron his pannai;c thmuRh Hell, commenced ningin); one of 
Ouitfi tnnnetR set to music of his own. 

Ihiilu: Some read ^rtAJ and Iranalale : "Why doat thou not 
J*pl»le and confine within due boundt. the appetite of morlala ? ' 
Oa*n ,a(lu : translattni; : "To what pitch do»t thou not drive r 
woc take lacru in n good sense, as though the words meant : 
'Wl^ dart not thou. holy hunger oi gold, restrain the desire of 
■«aUf " Scarta.(fini wj*. Ihm it is clear, before everything 
tMC. that name intends here either to translate or to imitate the 
*ell-taOwn vcr»e« of Virgil (Ain. iii, 56; : — 

" Quid non morlalia pcctora cogia, 
Auri aacra names ? " 
TUt is ei-ldefltly the opinion too of Benvcntito, who translates 



" O «xcGrabili> cupiditas R»ri." 

'236 Rcadittf^i on tht Purgaloriv. Canto xxn. 

Dell* oro, 1' appetito del mortalt ? ' 
Voltando scntiret te giostre craine.* 


Sc&rtauini «&}-s that, of four dilTcrcnt way* of inicrpicting the 
paMage, he prefcis Ihe followint: : " Per the diMoric vie, pet chc 
malvagjtl, non conduct cfn)idttu,o csccrandi fame dell' oro, I'ap- 
pelito de|;li uomini ? " {Tkn^agh tt-hat craoitd trayt anJ t/irougk 
vhat wuJiatiust, dotuhtui not tcitduii, etc.) He alfto cite* a number 
of Coinincnialoia who say that righlly to understand how Virgil's 
Bcvcrc ccn»urcof the hun^crof |;oldicrvc«tncondcninrrixligahty 
(for both thcMiscrandihe Prodigal have the sinful lov« of nioncyl, 
the follnwinf; pauagc from Aristotle (£Mui, book iv, ch. i. K. W. 
Browne's tranalalion) iray be quoted : " But the majority of 
piodifiuls, aa has been aiatcd, alio receive from improper >ourcc>. 
and arc in this respect illiberal (in the Italian version avt\tC9*im'ti 
tranKlited, fiuilty of the sin of Avarice). Now they become (r>ndo( 
fcccivinK becauHc they wish to spend, and are not able to do it 
easily, foi ihfir means Boon fail them ; ihcy arc therefore com- 
pellc'd to get supplies from some other quarter, and at the aamc 
time, owin^: to ilicir not caring for the honourable, they receive 
without BCTupic from any person they can ; for they arc anxious tft 
give, and the how or the whence they (;et the money matters not 
tochem." lliBf,-ialihnii the follnwingnote: "Sacrit,e*<cT»hi\e. Famt, 
pcrdcaidciig smodcrato." Ftmt is U6i:il by Pclr«rch,part ii,C«Ni. 
IV, Hi. fi : (Judlit per cM' io ho di monr tat/amt, I- very one can see 
that this is the Virgilian Quid tii»i moftal'ui f^itofj !,>gis A un smi4 
faints ? " When (adds Biagioli} I rend for the first rime ihU pfrtki. 
written Ihuii as cne entire word, I confess that 1 did not succeed 
in undcrotandtni: the conttruction of it, atthouch the sentiment of 
il can he no clearly Ken. ... 1 rclutncd to my house and com- 
menced the analysis, separating the prepntition p^r from the ad- 
jective (he, knowinK that, in whatever aspect il pm>ents itself, rhc 
ia nothing but an adjective, and therefore connected with a ooun 
cither expressed or tindersttrad, and I quickly- found that I could 
fill the void, by writing: 'per chc (ftr i/auJi) !>ccl1eraKr.ini non 
reggi, etc. (Ihrough vhal crima itai Inca no! coHJufl, etc.).' and 
in this way the constiuction bccomeu quite simple." 

* gioiire graiiu . This of course refers to the collisions btlwecn 
tlie Misers and Prodigals, as they encounter one another m their 
ceaseless course backuartU and forwards each in their own half ol 
the Fourth Cirrlc of HelL Compare th« words in that passa^^e 

(/«/■*". J'-33):— 

"Co<ti toinavati per lo rcrchio retro, 

Da ogni mano uU' oppositn punlo, 
Ciridandnti anchc loro onio&o metro : 
Poi si volgca ciasctin, t^uando era giunto 

Per lo Buo meaxo ccrchio all' altra jjiostra." 

Canio XXIt. Readme on tii< Purgatorh. 



AUor m* aeconi cbc troppo aprir V ali* 
Potesn le mani x Rpemferc, e p«nte' mi 
Cod di quel come de^K" Bltri mali. 45 

And had it not been that I rectified my conduct, 
when 1 understood that passage (Z'i) where thou, as 
it were mdignnnt againsl human nature, do«t exclaim 
— 'Through what (crooked channels) dost not thou, 
O accursed hunger of ^old. drive the appetite of 
mortitiB?* — I, rolling the weight should (even now) 
be experiencing the i;nni jousts (of the MlEurrii and 
Prodigals in Hell). Then did f perceive that the 
huKls could spread their wings too much in spending, 
and I repented me as well of Ihnt as of my other sins. 

Statius next condemns Prodigality in men, who like 
himself in his life-time, seem to b« i^orant of how great 
a. lia it is. Benvcnuto says we may suppose (hat 
Statins now anticipates the possibility of Virgil asking 
bim : Why then did he remain 50 long doin^ penance 
among the Misers? We may assume that Dante re- 
present!) Statius as replying' to this ima^pnar)' qucsttun, 
by stating that the tM-o sins of Avarice and Prodigality, 
diametrically opposed to one another, are rightly 
punished in the same Cornice. 

Quanti ruurjeraa cai crini iKemi, f 

*m^r r »K: In Purg.x, i^ Dante pvc« wop to theeyea,u 
bere lo the handB:— 

** E quanto 1' occbto mio potea Irar d' ale 

Or <l»l einistro eil or dat de»tro fianco." etc. 
fertmi K0mi. Compare Tnf. vii. 46, where Vii^'l' '" describing 
to Dante the punishment in Hell of the Avarieiouv and the Prodi^itl , 
bay* p( the former:— 

Queiti fur cherci. che non han coperchto 
PilMA al capo, e Paj>i e Cardinkli, 
In cut tna avarizia il m>o Hopcrchio." 
And al »*f»e jj : — 

** In ctcTDO vcrranno alii due cozzi ; 
Qucsti riturgeranno del aepulcro 
C«l pugno chiuao, e queati eo' crin ntont." 
P S 


ReaJiugs on the Purgatorio. Canto XUI. 

Per ijcnorknxa,* cbe di quexu pecca 
To£lie il pcnicf vivcndo, e tiv^Vt ealmni 1 1 
E uppi chc la colpi. chc rimbcccat 

Per dritta oppcsiziane alcuin pcccalo. 


*igiieTanza: Scartaizini explains thai Ihcrc are two kinds of 
t^orancc : the on« xinrul, and the other not. Ignorance is unU 
whkh coold be overcome by cxerciMng and perfecting reatoa 
Sec St. Thomas Aquinas (Summ. Thtol. p. i, 2^, qu. ]xxvi, art. »): 
" f^icumquc ncj;Ii|;ii habere vel faccic id quM tcnctur habere t^ 
faccic, pcccal pcccato omisstanin. t'ndc propter nc^lj^cntiam if- 
norantia eorum qua; aliquis scire tenclui cat peccalum ; non autem 
imputatur hnmini ad ncijligentiam m nekciat ea quae acire nan po- 
tctil- L'ndc hoTum ignnranlia imiimibHis dicitur. quia studio Kupe- 
rari non potest, Bt propter hoc tii)iii if;norantia, cOm non ait valun 
laria, CO qtl&d non est in poteslatc noMrd cam rcpcllcrc, nnn cit 
peccatuni. V.x quo patct qu6d nutU it;noiamia invincibilis ol 
pcKCatum ; i^noiaiitia autcm vinctbili« Cbt ptcculuiD si «it conin 
quK aliquis scire tcnciur, non autem ai tiit eorum qijB quii sciti 
non tcnctur." 

tiu^fi ettrtmi: Benvenuto ha* a fanciful inlcrprvlation (or 
ntrtmt "... ihc extremes, for attch aT« Avarice and Frodigalitr". 

I rimtfutii : Blanc ( I'oiaMiirio OanUto)) says that rimktet^n b 
a ivord of uncertain origin, and (hat Danlc uses it in Ihc xenteof 
bciniE directly opposed io anything. It propeily siKnifies to strike 
the ball bHckwarda and forward* from one jitayci tuiinolhcr. The 
word is UMrd in Coiuca aa the title of a kind nt -long lu cucite the 
backward when unwilling to carry on a rendtiia. It would seen 
Io correspond with the Enjjiish word " riturn," und the Trench 
" rif^iUr," term* fnmilinT in the tcnni»-courl8 of London and Pali*- 
The Cran Ditiofdho gives the followin); quotation (rom ihc l-'lortn- 
line translation byVaichi.ol Sertccm, Ih 0<«KyicJu, Florence, 1514. 
410, in which allusion ia made to (he ancient game of P,iJ!oJu,tin 
original parent of the Ramc of Tennia: " «e arcmo a far con uno 
chc sia buono giuocalore cd CMrcitato, not tnandcremo la palU piu 
■icuranientc ; pcrchi in qualunque modo gli vGnga. aapri rirobec- 
carla sgcvDlmcntc c con destrc/^a." And in the Knsc of repartee 
or retort, compare Varchi. L' Hrredanf, Dial^o ml ^u^iitsi rogitma 
etHtralmtntt dflla Umgui, tA in fartitolait dtU* TatAna, t Mlt Fw'tm- 
tui«, Venice, ij8o, 4I0, p. 4$: "Se alcuno ha deito aleuna coh, 
o vera, o fnUa, che clla »ib, c un" altro per piBgRiarlo, c (are, 
ch' clla ni crcda ^liclc fa bunna, cio£ I' appruova. affcnnando cod 
etaere, comecolui dice.elal voltaaccrcsccndo).), sonoin usoqucsti 
verbt. rifiiorirr. ribaJitt, riMtiUrstli,o niHunJjtntla r an T »kf*, 
rimktfCtirifJa, o rim^tfttSaruia." 



Canto XKtl, Readingt oh tin Purgutorio. 229 

Oin esso intieme qui auo verie ucca.* 
I'cfft, ■' io non Ira quell* f^entt ntaio 
Che piin^ I' avarizia, per pur^arfni. 
Per (ft controrio *aa m' b inconuitio/' — 

How many stull rix again Avith shorn hair, through 
intorancc. which cuts otT repentance for this sin, 
(both ) in life, and ai the extreme hour t And know 
that the fault which sets itself in direct opposilion 10 
any sin, here (in Purf:ator>-| together with it dries up 
it* verdure. Wherefore, if I have for my purgation 
been among that multitude who bewitil their avarice, 
it has happened to me by reuiioa of its contrary." 

The liist of the two faults undei^oes the same purga- 
tion, and is punished in the same place in I'ur^tory, 
as the fault which is the direct opposite to it Ucn< 
vcnuto says of la tiflpa die rimbtcca " idc^il, advcr&alur 
ct occurrit a bccco a bccco," and of iy»i secca mo vtrdc, 
"id est luit poenam iequalcm" . . . "And mark here, 
reader," he addi. "that our poet rightly assigns the 
same penalty to both those sins, for, althou{;h Avarice 
is always the most detested of the two, yet in real 
tnith Prodigality is a damnable pest, and hostile to 
the public weal. For the Frodif^al. who spends more 
Ihan nature requires, and more than fortune supplies, 
soon replaces plenty with emptiness, »weet with bitter, 
n^hl with darknes.s prni»e with derision, much with 
nothtng. The prodigal soon renders himself con- 
temptible in the eyes of those, by whom, but shortly 

*jMi rtrJc tara : Thb is taken from the figure of a plant that in 
aritttcrcJ up, cofittumecl. On ihii (itDbcrii write* : " iim' wirf<, cio4 
il troftpo uiofif;a<ho uiur ^luhtraiu/y. dnchi inrni la cottaalla sua 
custa nnxura." Compare ii«AiV/ xi, 47 : "llni»uiith the Lord 
God; Bcbotd, I will kindle n fttein thcc, and it shall devour every 
CTcco tree in thcc. and every dry tree." 


230 Readings on Ihe Purgatorio. Canto ixil. 

before, he was held in respect. . . . O how many 
worthy and creat men has this sin cast down into 
rage and despair ! " 

In the Article in the Edinburgh Revitw for April, 
1895 (referred to in the last Canto) on The Classical 
Slitdia 0/ Dante, ihe rev'yewer writes At p. 304: "Virgil 
is made to express his surprise that one so wise as 
Statius could have been stained with so sordid a vice 
(and it is to be obscr\-cd that Dante had a very special 
contempt for the vice of Avarice). Statlus explains 
that his was the contrary vice, viz. that of Prodigality, 
. . . and that in Purgatory, as in Hell, the excels and 
defect are punished together as connected fomis of vice, 
on strict Aristotelian principles, Slattus then declares 
that he was indebted to Vii^il for his recovery from his 
vice, as well as for the more important boon of his con- 
version to Christianity, which comes later. In par- 
ticular his conversion was effected by Virgil's well- 
known lines (see above, p. 225) ; the form, however, in 
which these words are quoted by Statius is vei>' 
diflicult to explain. . . . We are not aware of the ex- 
istence of any such tradition as to the character and 
habits of Statius. It appeal's to be a pure invention 
on the part of Dante, as much so as the allcRcd con* 
version to Christianity. The object in both cases seems 
to be to connect the bcneBts received with the influence 
of Virfiil, and with some definite passage that could be 
quoted from hts works. What makes this particular 
invention more singoilar is that it is somewhat incon- 
sistent with the picture of Slatius's condition presented 
by Juvenal in Sal. vii. 82-87. which Dante appears to 
have been acquainted with, thoui^h we cannot point out 
the indications of this here. For Prodigaltly implies 


Canlo XXII. Readings on the Purgalorio. 


the pos!icssion of considerable means, whereas Juvenal 
implies that Slatius was poor, and that even his^reat 
popularity would not have saved him from starvation, 
unless it had been relieved by the more substantial 
support of Domilian's powerful favourite, Paris. Esurit 
intactam Paridinisi vendat Agaven." 

Division II. — Id this, the principal division of the 
Canto, Statiuit relates to Virgil the cause of his sup- 
powd conversion to the Christian Faith. Virgil 
begins by asking Statius : " How were you guided 
to this Faith ? there is no evidence of it in your writ- 
ings. On the contrary-, in your Tkcbatd, there would 
se«in to be direct evidence that when you wrote it, you 
were a pagan." 

— " Or quando tu cantaut le crude armi )} 

[>ellB doppia tritiliiia dt JocR«lit,"* — 
I>bac il Cintor ilc' bucolici carmj.t 

— *• Per qaclln che Cli^ { teco II tasta, 

*fii iofpi* triitttia di Joctufe : Etcoclcs and Polptccs, twin 
MM of (£dipus and Jocasta. having succeeded ihcir father as 
Kiap or Thetwi, Knd asretid to rule in alternate yearR. and 
tli«t ihe non-reigntne brother should pais the yeai in valunlaty 
exile. Etcoclcs reigned Aral, but, when at the end of the ycur, 
pDlynicca came to claim the sceptre, Etcocln refused to Kive it 
ap, and tbence aro&c the celebrated war of the Seven Kings 
agaiiut ThebcM so in>Kni(icentlyde<tcnbed by .liHchyliia. 

fCoMtor J** htuoUti utrmi: Compare Horace. 1 Sat. lOi 45: — 

■' mollc alquc focctunt 

Virgilio annocfunt Kaudcntca ruic Camcns." 

lhi» Mr. Maclcanc (Horalii Ofera (Jiiiniii. London, lASt) 

nnarks that whether Virgil had at thi4 time published his 

Gf«rf tci or not is uncertain, but at any tale he hud Ihtni in hand, 

•nd hi* fncndti h«d proltably heard a Rrtui pari of tlitm recited 

Ltn private, the BmiAUs had been published tome lime, but, until 
[he .EwiJ had nwdc some prop-CM, we h;ive no reason to sup- 
pMC that Virgil wat claat;ed l^ his contemporaries with poets 
ai the ^rsl ranli. 
{ CM : Statius begins the Thebaid with an invocation to 

Gtbt the UuK of Ilisior)', 
fatroic aj.-lioas of brave men. 

whoM of&cc it wa* to record the 
Sec ThdMid, i, 40-4S- 

"Now when thou didst sing of the tier 
the two-fold affliction of Jocuata {i.e. ) 
Polynices)," exclaimed the Sinjier of the 
"it (Iocs not appear by thai which Clio 
thcc there (in thy poem), that the Faith, vi 
good works do not suffice, hud as yeti 
believer, tf this be so, what Sun (light 1 
or what candles (light fron] earth), did 
darkness for thee, that thou didst afterwi 
sails into the wake of (he Fisherman (St 

Statius replies, premising that the I 
lumincd his mind came to him from a 
in Virgil's writings. 

*La Jl, itnta la qual htn /if mom hatta: 

". . . CI non pcccaro: e » clli hannoim 

Non basta, perch* non cbbcrbuite 

Ch' i parte dclla fettc chc tu crcdi 

And Hthrtwt xi, 6: " But withoui faith it in ii 


iqiutl mU quai eanMe: Pratic«lti on 
simbolo ddU graiia divina ; la caaJtla, della k 
] diiiro ai fftunltr: Accordini; to Dean V 
had become familiar throujih the SigilU 
by the Roman Pontiifs, on which there wa> 
Christ fishing wiih a line, and St. Peter wit 
tncniion of this sval incurs in a letter of C 
the year of Dante's birth. "Con qucsU peril 
di quBJ lume soprannaturale foue meatieri a 
lla ana sanienia. I' inchtaarai a! 

Canto XXU. Readings on ti\e PurgalorU). 

Ed cgli a Itti : — " Tu prima m* inviasti 
Verso Parnaco « bcr ncltc sue grottc.* 
E poi Kppceuo Dto m' slIuminaKti.t 

Facc«u come quci chc va di nottc^ 

ma: ioT tbcy were 6sfaen. And Jens sud unto Ihecn, 
Come ye after mc, and I will make you tn t)ecame fiehen a( 

*fi v tit : I follow Camerini in tolling i^rtilU as " bunks, tlopcs." 
and not ■• "caves, gioitoo." H« nays; "Groile, qui puce per 
ri^, cttotc im/. xsj, I to, c Pvr^. xiii. 45.' And Landino says thai 
"ncic aae nf< crono Ic fonii ftargaace [Ptsaut) consacraic ak 
BOBe." The GraH Oiiioiiano unecially quotes the prct«f)t 
jfmmage. and *my Krt>ltM must ix taken to signify " RiaHo ai terra, 
Arg i t* , Rifm." TriMtno also accentuates thin iiif;niticniion of 

tfi tat mpfirtssa Dio m' altuminajti : (liobcrti exclaima: "Non\ 
potca uaatc far un pid grandc i>lo;^ia a Virgilio. (t) fa che da 1 
W Staaio riceva I' cduca/ioni- poelica. e 1' idea de' nuoi pacrni I 

iixi, 94. >< *f-); {a) la buona itottrina chc In converte alia viriii I 
.axn, ^1 it 1^.; ; f j) il larnpo Htvsio chc lo conduce alia fede (v. V 
&(, tt ttif-); nndc fa di Vtrgilio non solo un macntro in pocsia, c in | 
morale, ma esiandio di retigionc. e di religiom; criitUna. Ricavnii l 
da ci& f>c(iant<> come Virgilio (o*»c riputato da Dante un pocta J 
nSipam, e tntiio cmtiano." -^ 

J fivi flk M tfi w-^f' : An ulluiion tu the nttcndant who at night 
waUta in bront of hii maaicr, canying a lanicm behind liim, to 
ituS, ^vini; light, he himiielf remains in the dark. A paxta^e 
me»tW identical » fttund in a sonnet of Mckftcr Polu da ReKi;>o in 
Leonoardy who Aourinhcd about 11 jo {P«tii dti Primo Secolo JtUa 
f Upa lulitta*, Floicncc, 1816. a vols, iio, vol, i, p. 129):— 
** Si coRio quel, chc porta la lumcra 

L« nolle, qvando paiwa per la via, 
Alluma asstii piu Kcnie delta spcra. 

Chc »c meilesmn, che 1' ha in balla.'' 
C«ap«n alKi Shakctpcarc, Uuimrf/or Mtaturt, act t, K. ■ ;— 
"Hnven doth with \n n\ wc with torchci do. 
Not light thcffl (or ihemielvcs," _ 

So. according to Dante. VitkiI walking inlhcilarknensof ignorance, 
kn beaiini; the light of wisdom, g'^'*-' t" !ilaliuB, uhu Ciinic after 
lUB, tttc knowledge of the true faith. The Edinbui);h Reviewer 
ara that the Juwn giudisio by which Virgil, Ihouffh able to sivc 
oocr^ b not able 10 «ave himtelf. ik a touching ami enqLimite 
^wtapbor. Gioberti after asking hintticlf the quefition, why this 
•b<MiM he, >an that by this example Dante winhe* to demon nI rate 
m pntlound Utcological truth. " Dto non guarda per aalrarc ai 
OMTiti (Sella patura: nella lua ele/ione il auoordinc di giudicarc 


lieaiiings on ike Purgatorio. Canto XXII. 

Che porta il lume retro, t t^ Ron giova, 
Ua dopo s^ fi te pcrsone dotte. 
Qiiando dicctti: 'Sccol ai rinnuova ;* 70 

Tomii KiuUixia, c primo tempo umino. 
E progenic disccndc dal cici nuova.' 

And he to him : " Thou firs! didst shew mc the way 
to Parnassus, to dnnle (of the waters) on its slopes, 
nnd then didst illumine me (in drawing) near to God. 
Thou didat like him who walks by night and carries 
the ti^ht behind him, and profits not hinnself, but 
makcB wise the persons behind him, when thou saidst : 
■ The world ii bom again: yusttcc ii reluming, and 
mail 's primeval time, and a new progeny itescenJs from 

Comparctli {Virgilio nei medio evo, Livomo, 1871, voL i, 
p. 128, etc.) says that this prophecy of the Cumxan 
Sybil is applied by Virgil, who was a courtier, to the 
birth of the i^on of Asiniiin Polliu, but thai Dante sees 
in the words an announcement of the birth of the 
Rcdermer. Nor was Dante the first so to understand it. 
The presentiment that breathes through the whole 

I impcrxcrutabilc: ci li serve per far H «leito bene spvtso dcllc 
operc <; dci decii del riprovato." 

• Stcoi it rinnvuva, et eeq, 'Ihe paMai;^ rcfctred to is contained 
in ttic words put into the mouth of the Sibyl, Virgil's Uutolut, tittl. 

iv, 5-7 :— 

" Magnuft ab inlcgro naecloram tiascilur ordo. 

Jam redil el Vlr(;o, rcdcunt Satumia rc^na; 

Jam nova progenies cwlo dcmitlitur alto." 
It vill be iccn that Dante tranatulc^ it almost literally. I han 
rendered %ttol si nunuovn (and I «ee Mr. Shnducll docs the sameX 
"ihc wnrtd is born aeain." Tlic Gran IHcwnaric, s.v. ue«h^ j 
H hss : " Vale anchc il Mondo c Ic Cone mof^datie." 1 1 also (lUoCcB 
the foUowiiii:; from Oiov. Villani, lib. v. cap svi, Mhcte is related 
the seizure oi' Ci>n.->taiii:c of Sicily, while a nun, and her enforced 
marnafie to the Emperor Henrj- V : '/"jr. iii, \ot\in\: **Cn«tan/a 
Bcrocchia chc fu del re Guii;lielmn ... la quale era tni>iuo a 
Palermo ... la fcee (il detio papa Clcmcnlc) uscirc del muni»cro, 
cdiipena6inlcieb'ella^f<4i<r»Mfv»f j«rpfo c oaare matrimonio." 


Canio 1CX1I. Readings oh the Purgaiorio. 

Eelogtu of A speedy renewal of the world, in an age of 
happiness, justice, love, and peace, and the way that 
such expectation is linked on to the birth <A an infant, 
were things too seductive for Christians to read and 
not to cooncci with the birth of Christ, and the re- 
newal of the world in the new and gentle doctrines 
which he offered to it. In fact the Christian inter- 
prctatioo of the Fourth Eclogue is seen to have been 
mocfa in \-ogue among the Christian writers of the 
Fourth Cenlory. The fullest interpretation of it in this 
sense is to be found in an allocution delivered (according 
to Esscbtas, Vita Const, iv, 32 : and Constandni Oratio, 
cap. xix) by the Kmpcror Constantine before an ec- 
dcftiastical assembly. The TCmperor, exainining that 
eampt wi lion of Virgil in its various parts, see-; in it th« 
prediction of the Advent of Christ, shown forth very 
circamstantially; the virgin that returns is Mary; the 
ocw progeny sent down from Heaven is Jesus ; the 
serpent that shall be no more is the ancient tempter of 
ocir tatbcn ; the amomum that will be born ever>'where is 
the Christian race, cleansed from sin ; and he: goes on 
inicrpfcting after this wise other details in the Eclogue, 
He maintains that Virgil wrote with the clear intention 
of predicting the birth of Christ, but that he expressed 
himself in veiled language, mixing up with the words 
even the names of heathen divinities, so a& not too 
openly to shock the beliefs of that time, and not to 
draw upon himself tlie displeasure of the spiritual 
aathoritics. Lactanlius also, who li%-ed in the same 
century as Cunstanlitic, interprets this Eclogttr In the 
Chriitian sense, referring it however not to the hrat, but 
to the tecoitd coming of Christ. (Lactantius. Div. /mlituL 
Kb. vti, ch. 24). Sl Augustine, while admitting ihc 


Readings 0)1 the Purgal<mo. Canto XXii. 

existence among the heathen of prophets who foretold 
the coming of Christ, also cites the Fourth Edogtu. and 
curiously enough takes up verses 13 and 14. which he 
refers to the remission of sins, through the merits of the 
Saviour. (August. Efiisl. i^-^.aJVttlus. ch. 12 ; Epi^i, 258, 
ch. 5; De Civ. Dei, lib. x, ch. 27.) In vain did St 
Jerome inveigh against such ideas, ridiculing those who 
could believe that Virgil could be a Christian without a 
Christ. (Hieron. Episl. 53, ad Pautiit. ch. 7). Christian 
theologians continued lo interpret the famous Eclogut 
in their own way, and even those who did not believe 
that Virgil bad himself understood his own words in the 
sense which they attribute to them, still maintained 
that, though personally unconscious of the fact, he 
oflercd a teslimi)ny and an argument for the true faith, 
fl'hc pretended irresistibility of that argument also gave 
/rise to ecclesiastical legends of conversions due lo the 
f verses of the Fourth Eclogue, that of Statius, and that 
of three heathens Sccundianus, Marcellianus, and 
VerianuG, who, being suddenly enlightened by Vii^il's 
lines, from being persecutors of Christians became 
martyrs for Christ. Pope Innocent lit quotes the 
lines in conlirmation of the Christian faith in a Christ- 
mas sermon \Strm. ii, in fat. Nativ. Dom.), and they 
were understood in the Christian sense during the 
middle ages and afterwards. We may conclude then 
that Dante is here following the exegesis of a tradition 
generally accepted in his time, that made Virgil a 
prophet of Christ. 

Rcnvcnuto, without going no far as to deny that the 
lines refer to the birth of Jesus Christ, is far more in- 
clined to think that they allude to that of Augustus 


Canto XXII. RetiiUngs on th^ Purgaloria. 


Per te poeti (ui, per tc crutiano; 

Ma pcrc4i4 vecgi mci * cift ch' io djscgn<\t 

A colorare atenderA la mano. 75 

Tlirough thee was 1 poet, through thee a Christum; 
bat that thou mayc«t better discern what I nm skctch- 
ing out, [ will put fonh my hand to fill in the colours. 

Statitis means that he will explain in detail what he 
has merely shadowed forth in outline. This he pro 
ceeds to do, and relates how he became acquainted 
with the early Christians, his sympathy for them in 
their persecutions, the help he gave them, his con- 
Tenion to Christianity, and his weakness in not daring 
to confess it. 

GtA tTH il mondo tutto c quanta prcgno 

Delia vera crcdenza, Kcminata 

Per li n)ciuBjy;i dell' cicino regno; 
E la paroU tua «opra toccata 

SI conaonava «i nuovi prcdicanlJ, Bo 

Ond* io a risilarli prcu usata-I 
Venncnni pot parcndo tanio kanti, 

Cbc, quaodo Domiiian li pcrMgucttc,$ 

' Mei *i di»ae uiandio in vece di mtgiio per abbre- 
(Segli antichi, liccome Io diuc BuonagiunU : * Pcrchi 
Is pan* mri mo Io crcdcukc :' c Mcucr Cuio : 'Uunque sarebbc 
■Ml di* i' ioMt moTto.' " (Gran Dixwnario.) 

fdh^im . . . C9/»ran; Gioberti interprets liis^rw as the oMojiM 
as MMnw, and j tolorart, 4 Miorar P Mtoxxido diugiK. Blanc 
f t'lv 4iAoJ«*>o DiMtM^o) aava (hat tahrare I« here uHcd in the 
^imti<icMn»c,and Ihm »i);ntfic» t "to expliin anylliingindclsiL" 
WWKMW Biaoctii explains : " II diaegno adombra fa cosa e li colon 
r anrvfrano." 

] snl» fnr utanta : SciMarjtini notices that ihc pa«l partictplea 
■ar«. aiflcicntlf awd as n(mnE ; il lUstinuk/ tot il Jettino ; la Jitfvitf 
lav la d»tpMtti»n* ^ it icgilalo for /<• togiUthnt. 

Sfasaao [hmitiaM U ptrttf^afilt : The persecution of the 
ChnMiaita by the Kmpcior Ilomitur look place in a.ii. 95, and 
t^wrti n iw d until hia death in tlic following year. Slaliua himtclf 
Srd aboot the aame lime. 


aj^^^^ ReaJiHgi on Iht Purgalorio, Canto tXll- 

Senra tnio lagnmar non fur lor ptantU 
E rncntn chc di li per mc ti Mctie, tj 

lo li Mweani, c lof drJiti costumi 

Fflr dt^rcgiftie a. me tuttc altre tcttc ; 
B pria ch' io conduc«ssi i Greci ai fiumi* 

I>i Tcbe poctando, ebb' io bxnesmo; 

Ma per paura chiusot cristian fu'mj, tfi 

Lungamenle mostrando pagancuno; 

E qucsia icpidczu il quarto cerchiol 

Cerchiar mi te' piu ch' «1 tjuarlo ccnlc-smo. 

Already w»8 the whole world teeming with the true 
belief, sown by the messengers of the eterrtal Kin^> 
dom (i.e. the Apostles); and thy words touched upon^ 
(by me) above were so much in harmony with thai 
new preachers, that I adopted the practice of visiting! 
them. After that, ihcy began to seem so holy to me;] 
that when Domitian persecuted them, their lament 
tionn were not unaccompanied by my tears. And 
loii^ ns 1 lemained in yonder world, I gave then' 
asKistance, and their uprii^ht ways made me despise 
all other sects; and uc i had led tbe Greeks as fax 

*aniductsti . . , ai fiumi: There are twelve boolta in 
TMfhaid. In the ninth book Slatiua de«cribe» how the GrxcLs,' 
nndvt Adrahlus. their king, caittc lo iht- atisiBtimcc of Polynices, 
and how tl^t-y icuchcd the Isracnus and Asopus, rivers of the 
Thcbais. ^lalius is thua made lo &av that he was bapti.f«l befbre 
he had completed his puem. and hiK Itikvwartnneiw would boj 
ahown by there bciriK no profroaion of liis faith, or praise of tha 
Chrisiian rcltKton. in hia three last book*. 

t For ekiuw in tbe sense of " biddcHi" compare Iftf, vfi, I > 

135 :— 

" r ancora ch' aggrappa 
O scoelio od altro cbe nermare e chiuso." 
And /»/■ i™*' '47' M^:— 

" Non potJr quci fu^irv lanto chiusi, 
Ch' to non scnrKt^si ben Puccio Sciancato." 
t fuarM tenhio: In the Fourth Cornice of PufKalory SlotI 
ta chastised. Compare Purg. xvii, 65-87 : — 

'* L' anior del bene, scemo 
Di suo do\-cr, quirilta »i riitora ; 
Qui ni ribaltc il mal urdalo rema" 

KDto XXII. Rtadingi on the Purgatorio. 


u the riven of Thebes in my poem (the Thelntid), 
1 had received baptism : but through fear remained 
* hidden Christiiin, for a long time making a show of 
Pa.);anism ; and that lukewarmness obliged me to pace 
lound the Fourth Circle for more than four hundred 

Ac interesting paragraph in the before-mentioned article 
\M'^ BdinbuTgk Review (p. 306) asks the vcrj* pertinent 
qDHtion : " What does Statius symbolize in the Divina 
Ctmmcdia ? The part assigned to him is almost, if not 
^t, as conspicuous as thai of the mysterious personage 
Ultelila in the Earthly Paradise, and only surpassed in 
impmance by the parts played in the action of the 
poi by Beatrice and Virgil." The reviewer offers as 
t Ingestion that if Virgil represents Human Reason, 
UAEteatncc Revelation or Theology, Statius might be 
npiMcd to typify something intermediate, such as 
"Hnmin Reason generally enlightened by Christianity, 
bot not specially instructed ur interested therein ; the 
Cvltivated 'lay* mind in an age ihat has received the 
jenend impres* of Christianity . . . one that is un- 
IcDOxiouxly rather than CDn:>ciou!(ly under its influence. 
Dante may have intended to create a type of this 
liate condition between Virgil and Beatrice, 
the highest tj-pe of pre-Christian intellect, or 
cly human reason, and the fullest development of 
wal enlightened by the treasures of wisdom and 
■owlcdgc which arc imparted by revelation and dog- 
itic theology." 

Dtriiion III.— Statius concludes hJK &pecch by asking 
firp} what has become of certain of the Latin writers 
he considers most worthy of fame. Virgil in 
iy, gives him the information, and at the same time 


Reading on the PurgaUtrio. Canto xxtl. 

tells him about many other writers, Greek as well ufl 
Latin, but reverently assigns the first place to Homer. 

Tu dunquc, chc kvato hai tl copcrchio * 
Che m* Atcondeva quanta bene io dico, 
Mcntrc chc del utirc avcm 80perchio,t 

Dimmi dm' 4 Tcreniio J no«tfo anttco, 
Cccilio,S PUuto t Varroili le h> mi : 



*topenkio : This must be taken in connection with H. 6t, 6a :^ 
"qual sole o quai candeic 
Ti Htcncbrmron ti," etc. Comjmn > Ccr. lij, 15, 16: 
"But even unto thU day, when Mrucs is read, the vail is n 
ihcir heart. Nevctthclc&&, when it bliall turn to the Lord) 
rail ahall be taken away." 

^Mfutre eke dtl xalirt aoim to^rckle: The po«t Alfieri. in hb 
■narKinal notes, quoted b>> Ria|;ioli, paraphraic* ihis ••mtnlrt Jn 
ti s^ai'aHnma ii Umpo her ialirt." 

\ Tfren:io : The rcBdinu* vary between " Ttreniia main antico" 
and "iKntroamico." The reading ".inlifo." in much to bcprcfcmd. 
(or "Niufrn" dintinctiy imphei fnendthip. Sec Ur. Moofc't 
Trxtaat Critkhm, pagca 4 ii>4i j. on this pifcMigc. 

I; Ctcilio : Staliui Ciccitiua was a eumic poet, and dramatist, a 
conlcmporary and friend of Terence, who is aaid to have tiuticnitted 
liix own comp(Kti1to>nK to the ciiticiKm of Cxcilius, aa to a man of 
•uperior judKmrnt. He died a.d. t68. 

Il l^arro : Scartsui'mi ob^crt'ea that, in the history of RtKnan 
litcraliire, two poctn of ihU name afc recorded. The mort 
renowned waa Marcui Tercntiuii Varro Keatinus, l>orn at Kcatc, 
u.c. ti6. He filled variQUs public ofiices trilh eicat credit. 
During the civil wars he at first followed Pompey, but promptly 
abandoned him to go to Kome with Juliun Ckuc, who intended 
employing him to collect the public library which he wished io 
fonn at Kome. After Cx»ars death he was included in the 
proscription ot the Triumvirs, but concealed himself until he 
wai taken under (he protection of AukuiIur. He patted the 
remainder of his life in sludie«, and died at the a^e of 6^ a.c. 37. 
He was the friend of Ciecro, who {Bmt, xv, 60} styled hin 
Diligettiuimns inviitigntvr anii^uiiatis. Seneca {CwuoL aJ fliii. 
ch. S) calU him "the most learned of the Romans." Quintilian. 
x. I 95. "Vir fiow^Morum truJiliA^imus" Lsclantiua (/m/. 1. ch. 
6) ityles him the most learned man among the Latins and Oreekv 
Tar less distinguished was the other Varro, Publigs Terentiv* 
Varro Atactnub. bom at Atacc in Gallia Narhoncnais, ii.c. 81. 
There ha« ticen much cont[uvcr*y an to which of the two Dante 
is speaking of here. VVittc was the km to suggest that the 


Caoto XXII. Reading on the PHrj^atorio. 341 

Dimtni se son danoaii, c& in qual vico."*— 
— " Conoro. c PcTsio, cd io. ed altri a.tta.1,"— itja 

Kispose !l Duck mio, — "Siam con quel Greco 
Che Ic Muse Itttir t pii) ch' ullro mai, 
Kcl primo cinghio d«l carcere ckco.} 


resding ought (o be Vafw. and that (he fietson Rpolcen of ti 
Luciut VanuB, a dramatic [wel, friend of bolh Vircil and Hoiacc. 
But ScJirrxfiini concludes a long and very close aiguincnt by 
■ayinx thai, as both Vurros w«re poets, either can well be 
mentioned by Dante with the others he names in this pa&sagc 
And when one rcincmbcra that all the old MSS. and all the old 
editions read Vam or Vara, not Vario, and that M. TcrontiuB 
Varro, ai being much the more renowned, would ha^-e been so 
much the better known to Dante than Varius, one must come lo 
the reaalotton of rcjcciini; the inRCniuun conjecture, and admit 
mth the many that Dante intended to »peak of Varro, though 
it >• not itnpouible that he may have made the two Vorroa into 
one pcnon. Dr. Moore (Text. Cril. p. 411] Ihinkx that it t« 
not ttithotil bearing on the rcadin|;s aitUto v. dwui', and Varro v. 
K«rw to observe that Dante has apDarently been guided in the 
selecttDa of these namcii, — Terence, Caeciltus, Plautua, and Varro 
(«/. Vario>^by (he recotleetion of one (or perhapit both) of two 
pssaa^ca in Hotacc. These are;— 

" rUwlus ad exemplar Siculi propcrarc lipichanni ; 

Vincerc CuetUius graviuie, Tirtntita arte." 

(j BfiUI. I, sS. 59-) 
And "Cattitio Plauloqw dabit Komanus advmptum 

Virgilio Var'KxiUif" {An Pottira, 54, 55.) 
Variu* is mentioned twice again by Horace in conjunction w!lh 
Vir^i), xts. J Hfysl. I, 147, and Hal. I, vi, 55, bcaidee — which ic 
cunnoK 10 reference to the contrnveny noticed above— a pas- 
•age in Sat. I, x, 44-46, where Variua, Vii^il, and Varro (Ata- 
einua) alt occur loRelher. 

*x-ue: Thia word in Italy means either "a street,' or "k 
viOage." or "a small town." Inalancea of all three will be fotind 
in tlae Crttn DUiOHarw. 

t lattdr: Compare Par. xiiii, 55-57 : — 

"he ma ionauicr tultc quelle lin^e 
Che Pnlinnia cnn le auore fcro 
Del laltc lor dolciuimo piu pinguC," etc. 
1 tmmre tuto ; Compare in/, a, 58-9, where Cavalcanic 
Cavalcanii uses the aame ciprcuton, when asking Dante for 
B«wa about hia aon Gnido. Dante's great friend : — 
II. <} 


Readifigs on tht Purgatario. Canto xxil. 

Speasc Hate rsKionlun del montc 
Che semprc hi lo nuirici nostrc teco. 


Thou then, who didst lift Ihc veil which was hiding 
from mc th»t good which 1 now pioclaini {i.e, the 
knowledgeofihe Christian Faith), while in our ascent 
we have time to spare (lU. excess of ascent), pray 
tell mc whcTc is our ancient Terence, (where are] 
Cecilius, Plautua. and Vairo, if thou know«*t it ; tell 
me if they are dnmncd, and (if so) in what circle (lit. 
Street)." "They," replied my Leader, "and Pcrsioi, 
and I myttelf, and a great many Others, are with that 
Greek {Homer), whom the Muses suckled more than 
they ever did another, in the first ^onc of the dark- 
some prison ^i.e. in L,imbo, the first Circle of Mcll). 
Oftentimes do wc converse about that mountain (Par- 
nassus), which is always the abode of (/if. has with 
itself)^"' nursinf;- mot hers (the Muses). 

Having named Homea- as the patriarch of Greek poesy 
Vii^il now proceeds tu mention certain other Greek 

Euripide v" i nosco, ed Antifonte,* 

" Sc pci qucslo cicco 
Carcere vai per altw/a d' ingcgno, 
Mio figlift ftv' 4, e p«rch4 non i teco ? " 
"'Umtpare also i 5'/. PiUt iii, 19: "by which also he went and 
preached unto Ihc npitila in prison." 

*AntiJutm: Antipdon, alao a tragk poet, lived fir«t at 
Athens AnA adcrvrnnU itt Syracuse at the court of the IjTant 
ilicinysiuB, who had him put to death for Itcinc (00 frank in hJa 
apeech (sec Arist. Rhti. ii). Arislolle praisci him as a poet, and 
Plulardi speaks pnrticuUrly qT him as one ot the best tragic 
wriiera. The rcadini; Anti/anU is adopted by all ihc best Codices, 
the first four editions, and many of the bcal Commentators, 
including Benvenuto, Uuti, Lana, Pietro di Banle, Witic, etc.; 
but othcni read AtuurmnU, the lyric poet. Scartauini poiata 
out the improb.iliility of Uante, a grave, serlotn poet, making 
mention of one who was all softness and effeminacy, and placinc 
him among the grealcU representatives of dramatic, epic, atti 
lyric poetf^-. Especially does this argximrnt gain force when one 
notices lliat Dante here neither mentions Catullus nor Propertius, 
ni>r Tibullua, nor Ovid, wt|h whose names he would be far more 


Canto XXII. Readtngt on the Purgatorio. 243 

SimofiKtc,* Agatonct nl altri pi&« 
Greci che pi di lauro ornflr U frootcu 

Hunpideti is there with us, and Antlphoa. Simonidcs, 
A^athon, and miiny other Greeks, who in fonncr 
liines (gii) decked their brows with laurel. 

Bcnvenuto says of ed allri piUe Greci. that Dante meanit 
Greek poets not less famous, such as Pindar the 
Thcban. Sophocles, jCschylus, Alcaeus, all traffic poets, 
Aristophanes, Philemon, comic poets, and many others, 
From at! of whom Virgil took many ideas. 

And having now spoken of certain Greek |>oets, he 
|i;ocs on to mention some Greek women well known to 

Quiri K vcgKion dcllc gcnti tuc J 

Antigone, Ucifile ed ArgiA tio 

£4 lamenc si tnsia como fuc. 

bmiltAr than with that of Anacrcon. Moreover, it would nut be 
in the IcMt probable thai smanucn&cs would chnnKc the well- 
knoum nime or Anacreon into Ihc much Icui known nam« of 
Aaliphoo. but an amanucniii*, who hfld never heard i>f Antiphon, 
■ughi <iuitc well be uippovcd to yield to the tamptstion of 
altering the word into Anacrcon. 

*iiimomuU: Siinonide» ivsk a liititinKui&hrd Greek lyric poet, 
Iwirn ILC 55^ He wat brou^l to Athens by HtpparchuK. He 
beat .Cschylus in a cumpeiition for » pri^c otfercd by the Athe- 
nian* iur Ihc best cleg;)- upon Ihc warriors who fell nl MarAlhon. 
He aho wrote cclcbratcil cumposiliona upon Thcrmopylx, Ar> 
temiatum, !>alamu and PUlca. He died at Syracuse, h.c. 4(19. 

f ^fotou ■ Agatbon waa a Greek troeic poet, a disciple of 
SocTMtc^ bom at Athciu, n.c ^^S, and died about 401. 

IS"'* '"*■ Tommaiir. rcmarki that ilie nttificcr lovcn the 
chiMren ol his ihouxhtt, and Uvea in them. Thus Staliut may 
alnosl be Mid to havx created these pcrsonugcs (or Hanle, who 
was but imperfecily acquainted with the Greek poets, so much 
to, that while speaking of I^uripidet be omits SophnElcs and 
■fUchrlui. Amtnant was dauchter of (ISdipus nnd Jocaita, and 
■later of Elcoclcs. Tolyniccs and lamenc. limint, her sister, is 
bm represented as still rooummjc for the death ol her be- 
ITMlled. DetpyU, wife of Tydeus. and daughter of Adraatus, 
Kmg of the Argi%-CK. Ar^n%, her (iBtcr, wife of Polyntcca. 




Scartazzini points out the diJiicalty 
Commentators at the apparent contra 
making Virj^l say that the dau{;hte 
qnivi, which is usually understood i 
primo cinghio of Kelt, t a Limbe ; w 
daughter of Tircsias. mentioned by 1 
(who is also introduced in the Tkebat 
been placed by Dante in Hell among 
in the fourth pit of the MaUbolge. 1 
been taken for granted that thi& was 
Dante, and that he had taken a nap 
Scartaj^zini asks. U it so ? Was he a 
He suggests a way of intcrprctattf 
solve the difficulty, and that is, bj 
(verse log), vfddsi (na) and a>vi (113X 
primo cinghio), but to Hell in Rcneral [ca 
of the spirits being only in Limbo, but 
Ctrcleft lower down. Aecordinf^ to xvhi 
Virgil would say that all the pcnionaj; 
and by Statius introduced into the Th. 
leaving it uncertain in what Circle (1 

Uyftifyli, who condactwl A<lraittu». to tha 

Caotoxxti. Rtadm^ oh ihc Purgaton'o. 


.&te is laid, and the contradiction disappears. Scarta2> 
ani adds : " I do not say that one must, but only that 
one migki understand it so." 

Division IV. — Genvenuto saj*8 that the Fourth and 
concluding Division of (his noble Canto is not less 
curioas and copious than the other three. In it the 
Poets are made to reach the Sixth Cornice, in which 
Gluttony is punished. 

Dante bc^nv by describing how he and the two shades 
" Vifgil and Statius had emerged from the stairway, and 
now in the Sixth Cornice. He then, according to 
bis custom, tells his readers what the time was. By 
Virgil's advice they turn as usual to the right. 

Toccvinti ambo c due Kii li pocti, 

I>i nuovo att«nti a riguardafe intorno, 
Libcii dsl luilirt c diii parcli ; 

E ictt le qualUo ancellc cran Ae\ giorno* 

Rinta»c addiclro, « la quintu era al icmo,t 
Druxando pure in »a I' ard«nle eorno; 



*lrf ■«((»» owv/Ir . . . Mgimn»: Tomcnaajoin hti Cotnmentar)- 
^■Ma AntoncDi on this paaugc : " Arrived at the summit of the 
■ibwajr which \cA iniu the S:xih Cornice, wv arc iiilurnicd irhsl 
At liior wx\, which wciuld be dim hour twfnre noon. Diinle had 
alreulf, m Canto iii, made us undcnttand that ihc hunitmaidcns 
■I tbc day >'ct« the hnim, and nltowing the hypothesis In be 
Mm^ l that the Sun rf^se at Cjo, if (our of the handmaidcM had 
fana^wd kebtnd, aitd (he fifth was at the pole, directing her 
Huiacpoini opWardsfiKat is. not yet havint> reached (he half of 
Imt ooorae) ... it follows ihal four »inA a half houn since sunrtKC 
vcrc OBkrW accomplislird, and thcrrforr it wa> not faf from beini; 
o'ciock." Compare Pvrg. xii, 80, 81, where noon i* d«- 
in vmdAr lan;;uage :— 

" vedi ehe lornn 
Dal scrviglo del di I' ancclla )CHta." 
^U ■<'<n>.i "^miUmt' . . . urJfHU carno : The fifth waHapproach- 
■« ti <e point of the pole of the chariot of the Sun, and its 

fOie: - ii]«n^>i(<(Mt^^ Anloni-lli) betauM: thcfilth Imiui i> Ihc 

a«K a cT Bi i to mid-day 


Readings on the Purgatorio. Canlo XXII 

Quandoilmio Due* :—"Io credo ch' ■Ho eslrenio' 
L« dntrc upallc volger d coove^na, 
Qirando il monle come far solcoio." — 

Cosi r UHUizii fu li noitUa tnscgna, 

£ prcndcnuno la via con mL-n io»pctio 
Per I' awcnttt di quell' anima dcRna.t 

Both the Pods had now become ailcnt. their intention 
awakened anew to look uround, bcinR freed front the 
aaccnl gnd from the walls, and by this (inic four of 
the handmsidenK (hours) of the day «*ere left behind, 
and the fifth was at the pole {of the »t). slitl directing 
upwards its blazing point ; when my Leader; "1 think 
we shall have to turn our right shoulders to the outer 
edge, encircling the mountain *» u*« iirc wont 10 da" 
Thus was custom there our guide, and wc tock the 
way With k;aa doubt, through (havingi the assent of 
that noble soul (Stattus). 

Bull observes that up to this point f^ante has demon- 
strated how Man by penitence may be purged from the 
five spiritual sins of (i) Pride; (s) Envy; (3) Accidie: 
(4) Anger; (5) Avarice, and for this, Reason (i.e. Virgil) 
has sufficed, which taught him how such vices can be 
purged from the souL But now that he haa got to show 
how the two sins of the flesh, namely Oluitony and 
Sensuality, have to be purged, he ha« represenlvd Stati 

*ii//ii tstrrmo Lt datri ifalU t'olgff : By turninc their pjgl 
(boulders ta the outer cdf^c of the mountnin, they wotdd of cour 
turn to ibf riKhl. In thin CtrraUt they do no vrithoul asking their 
way, as the^ have dorvc prcviounly. Probablv Ihey had taken the 
directions given to ibcm in Canto »x, 81 : " ia: voslre dcvtre ucn 
um^rt di furi," ns (general direttioiix tur their guidance in each 
iu«e»*'ve Cornut, and not necessarily only applyini; lo that l-'ifih 
Cornice. Il inhurdl} needful to remind ihc reader that in Hell, as 
they entered each Circle, they had iilw«y» turned to (t>c left. 

t^nWraaJMii tUgna : M alius, having; been liberated from further 
penance in Purcalory. was duly quatihcd to aM;end to Heaven, aiul 
micht ihcrcrofe he tuppoied (o have the ^uidanec of divine inspin- 
tion in his way upwaria. 

Canto xxii. Readings m the PurgaUmo. 



as bdng added as a further guide, and by tiitn we arc to 
undcntand the passive intellect accompanied by Reason, 
which (Reason) by itself would rot be able to compre- 
hend the loftier matter to be dow discu&scd (impero cht 
lo inietUUo piusibilt * apprendt U ecu divint, U quali per la 
ttnro altesza non apprendt la ragione). 

The three Poets walk fonvard alonj; the Cornice, and 
l>aotc testifies to the benefit he had in his earlier days 
deri\-ed from the works of Virgil and Statius. by relating 
the attention he gives to their words as he follows in 
their steps, literally and figuratively. 

Elli givan dtnznii. «d io aotclto 

Dirctm, cd ii>c»ltava i lor >crmoni + 
Cti' a pocur mi davano intellelto. 

They were walking oa in front, and I by myself after 
Ih in i, aod 1 was listcDiag to theii discourse, which 
gave me understanding for Poesy. 

This entrancing conversation is interrupted by the sight 
of a tree in the midst of the path, of a peculiar shape, 
auch aa will be described, laden with the most fragrant 
and luadou» fruit. A crj'stal stream falling from the 
cliff-wall percolates through its branches. This is the in- 
urnment of the penalty of the Gluttonous, who hungryn 
thirsty, and emaciated, have before their eyes the most 
appcttziog food, and the most refreshing drink, but are 

* ** lnUil«ttMt ^sticus, Hvc ^iiibUit diciluT inlcllcctna, quatcnas 
RCipit i^cid icnprcsun piiuMjuum cfTormct ctv^nilioncm, ct 
Aeitar ctaun intillulmi ptutibtlti, eo aood poicns Kit reLigKre taniia, 
e^akntm aiicciea." (Joacph 2»inie Hcllinii, l^xicvn qito t'^ffnfii 
Thiutafrum I- • tfticantur, Colonic;, iSjS.) 

tw nM i H . . . Cvmparc /*j. csi«, lyt: " The cnUsiocc 

elUiy wonlaeivcin ii^tu; ilgivclhundciitsndint; unto IhcHimpIc," 

wWai ill the Vit^eMb is ; " D«cUntio Kmianuni tuoruiti illuminat : 

L «* inUDcctiun d*t pwuiis." 


Readings on the Purgatorio. Canto xxil. 

prevented by the formation ot the tree from ascending to 
the object of their desire, which is placed beyond their 

Ma tONtoruppe te dole! rai^oni 130 

Un arbor che trovammo in metia sirada, 
Can pomi * ad odorar tio^vi « buoni. 

E come abete in alio m digrada 

Di ramn in ramn, cos) qucllo in giuiio, 

Cred' io pcrclii persona >u non vaclH.t 135 

Dal lato ondc il cummin rcmIto era chiu»o, 
Cadca dell' alta roccia un Iiiuot chiaro^ 
U ii spandcva per le fnglic auto. 

Bui soon was the pleasant converse interrupted by ■ 
tree that we encounteretf mid-wity in the path, with 
fruit Bweet and (grateful to the smell. And as a fir- 
trcc tapers upwards from branch to branch, so that 
(tree tapered) downwards, in order, I suppoBC, that 

*pt>mi: The primary mcuninK. an in Lalt.i f'vnium, of tvmo or 
poma it the fruit of any tree, round fruit lor choice. It never 
meanii " appl« " in Tuscany, except in tuch a *tn»t at "^omo 4*IU 
discorJui," ihc apple of discord, and " porno d' Adamo," "Adain'a 
apple " in anatomy. TomitiaB*«< DiiwiLirw Jci SiiKWiimt, p. 469, 
Sin. iSoo)9ay&: " Poma^ pocticamcntc, Ic/ruffA ma<iucld'a)bcro, 
e alquanto groue. Non per eaempto le fragole, n£ 1g more 
{mMwrfiet). In altri diaktti le cncic {affta) chinmanii pomi." 
The proper word for " apple " is mtJti, an in Latin malum, and (or 
an " appTc-trec," mtlo, (Cf. Ktadiiigi on fhf li/imif, 1906, vol. i, {^ 
94, note-t 

t IK non vaJa : I.ubtn ia amuied at the idea ot the branches bc> 
ing ton weak to tiiipnort the weieht of Kpiriti). Benvenulo cxplaiits 
the tree in a nuturnl way, namely that (he foliage wa> abundj^nt at 
(he top, liul that the br'nchcn diminished in the lower parts ho at 
to oHicr no opportunity of access. f)ul many of the old Commco- 
tatora actually believed that the tree wa>iupkidc down with its roots 
in the air : and the commentahet of I.andino and Vclluiello ai 
well as the illuilrntions of Botticelli contain eni;n>vin);ii *<> repre- 
senting it. Kven »o intelligent a Commentator a>i Pcrc' fatK into 
the same error, and moreover reprexents the water, alter falling 
apon llie tree, as Tfinctiiii^g af>ii;irjs .' The illustration by Dor* 
she vra an ordinary forest tree, nf which the upper branchrt spread 
out widely, l>ut are fewer aa the tree tapers downwards. 

Canto XXII. Readings on the Purgatorio. 


no one might climb up iL From the side, on which 
our path was closed, a limpid water fell from the high 
clifi^ and was diMnhulcd over the foliage abo%-e. 

As the three Poets have turned to their right, they have 
the margin of (he C<»7iiVc on their right hand, and the 
cliff from which the water plashes down would be on 
their left hand. 

We .shall find that later on {Pnrg. xxiv, loa et se^.), 
the Poets encounter another tree, precisely similar to 
this one, and learn that it is an off-^hool from the Tree 
of Knowledge of Good and livil that God planted itj 
the Garden of Paradise. Scarta/zini says that we may 
therefore conclude that this first tree, before which Ihcy 
have now been brought to a standstill, must be an off- 
shoot of the Tree of Life that was in the aame xacred 
spot.* Perez thinks the two water-falk on the ti'ees. 
wue ihc rivers Eunoe and Lclhe.t 

A voice ift now heard from the inside of the foliage 
of the tree, forbidding the spirits of the Gluttonous to 
cat of the fruit, and then citingexamplesof the blessings 
of abstinence. The first example is as usual an episode 
in the life of the Blessed Virgin, when she intervened 
in the marriage feast of Cana. not for her own gratifica- 
tion, but from a kind thought for others. 

• ■* Pinw I' autore che nel sesto wrchio, nel quale si purfta la 
Ctt^dclU gola. siaiio ((u' «rbori ; I' una prcxso a I' cnlrnln del 
dnn«. c 1' alliaptcsui alln «ai1ila dell' allra gironc." (Uuti.) 

' " Due al^fi carichi dc' piu belli c soavi e txlDroni I'rutti, « 
•*i> delta piii vivace vcrdura, fan di si mcratra allctlcvolc, 1' uno 
(mu air rotrala, I' altro oressn all' uscila dvl urrchi». Son due 
^^^Mp^UI lcv*ti da quell' albcro della scicnza dil bene c del msile, 
^^■^4 pciiiu auUa rima del inunle, nel t'aradliio tccrcMrc [Pcrex 
^^Bbt lelers to the above quotation Troni UuliJ, c dfil cui frutto la 
^^^■kiinmiMkral 4 dc' no&tii parent! bcwc e trai^ruiic m-' posteri 
^^B|Mo velcna Hanno Ic radicj vttm) il cielo. la cima verso la 
^P^ra (tec Dole un I. 1^5) ; i rami vengofio sempic atlarsandosi e 


Rtadings oh the Purgatcrio. Canto XXII. 

Li due pocti all' arbor a' apprctLHUx>; 

Ed una voce * per cntro Ic Ironde 140 

Orid6: — " Di questo cibo nvrcte c«ro."t — 

Poi dissc : — " PiA pcnuiv* Maria [ oaAe 
FoBser Ic no»c orrcvoli g cd inlerc, 
Cti' alia sua bocca, ch' or per voi rispondc. 

The two Poets drew near to the tree, and a voice from 
within the branches cried out: "Of this food yc shall 
have warn." Then it said: "Mary thought more how 
to make the martiagc festivities honourable »nd coni'- 
pl«le than of her own mouth, which now R«ponds for 
you . 

Dante is of course expressing the opinions of the Roman 
Church, and, by the v/ordfi sua hocca,ch' or per voi risponde 
meanK that out uf the mouth of the Blessed Virgin 

ingroaaandosi ad alto, s! chc persona non li potrcbbe salirc. E 
sovrn il primo (chc potreirndire il rampollo \ojffskcofi della seienta 
del bene} vicn gi^ dal nionlv, c spandcti per Ic fogltc, c rit«nta w 
iHio (?) ]' acqua d' un chi*ri»iiiia rivo. certamentc del rivo Eunoi. 
E sovra il tccondo (chepotrcmD chiamarc il rornpallo dclU KicnM 
del male) piove pur dalfa roccia, e infoniicsi per Ic frondc, c rttnU 
in ailo (?) 1* acqua d' altro rivo freschissimo, chc sembra do\Tr 
e«s«te Leti," (Perci, i Setk Ctrthi, pp. ai8, 319.) 

♦ Hna ivjrr ; lluti comment* : " Quc*ta voce fingc chc sia la voce 
dcir anKiolo puHtu a t;uardia del detto albera, lo quale 6n|i;c the 
alia tra Ic frondi." Scarlainni reminds ui that thi» tree it not 
there fnrthc three I'at^ttt, but for the spirits undcrsoing purgation 
for GluEiany, and to Iheic Intler is the voice addrcaacd. 

1 cato: This t« another form of carrttu, "famine." It bcfc 
means "total privation." Brunone Bianchi explains, "iwrrt^tjnt 
avfete carestia, ne itarele ptivati in pena della goloaitidichesiete 
puiitti in questo cerchio." 

\pan*va Maria, etc. : Compare Ptir^i xiii. »8-3o; — 
" La prima voce chc pa»o valando, 

Yinmnnon habtnt, altamcntc diwc, 
E retro a noi I' andA reiterundo." 

^onnoii fortMorfiwJi. The aamc formoccuri (in some cditioiul 
in Inf.iv, 72 :— 

"orrrtw/gcnic po*i»cdca quel I«)co." 
But 1 follow Dfi Moore's new text a» well aa Witie, and read 
unrevol in t»/. iv, 70- 


Canto XKli. R<fuiings on the Purgat^rio. 



there still proceed prayers to God on behalf of man- 

Benvenuto remarkR thai here, for fear that some 
woman might object that the BlcsAcd ViriE^in being full 
of the Holy Spirit, her example would not apply to 
women with ordinary- feelings and appetites, an instance 
is next gi%'cn. not of one. but of many abstemious 
women in heathen times. For the Roman ladies, as 
Valerius relates, used not to drink wine, lest they might 
be led into any breach of pood manners. But in later 
days, in the lime of the Umpcrors, things were changed, 
and Seneca complained that women did not drink less 
than men, and also incited men to drink ; pointing out 
that formerly baldness and ^out were not prevalent 
among Roman ladies, as was then the case. And there- 
fore the voice Irom the tree spoke these words in 

E le RomNRC Bntiche * per tor b«re t^5 

Contcntc furan d'acqua, c DanTcllot 

Diapregii cibo, ed acquitlA »a|)cr«. 

*k ttemaiu antkhc: "Vini u«u« olim Romania ficminitf 
■Snotus fuit. ne scilicet in aliquod dcdccus prolab«renlur : quia 
Httnmns a l.ibero patre iniempcmntix jcraoufl ad tnconccKoam 
Vcnnim cue cortHUcvit. " (Valerius Maiimuk, fuctorum 
Inttormmi{itt Mimurabiliam, lib. ii, cap. 1, § s-j Giobcrti obivrvcii 
tlui in more than oncpastiagc in his poem Uantc invcighH Bgainst 
dtcvicn and t)ic comipliitfthuf wixnen (i'nTx. \%\n, kki : Pnr. xv, 
ira,ctc.). (or well did he know what iinmcfisc influence women 
Ihit gpofi men. ComparuSt. Thom. Aquinani^'icNni. Thtal. pars 
ti, !^, qu- cxlii, art. 4): "!>i>bricta» maxima Tc<;uiTitur in 
javcnibua ct mulicribux, quia in juvcnibu& vi^ct Li)ncupiBt.cntU 
ddcctabilts prnntrr fcnnrcm xtntit : in inulicribu« xutem mm 
atiuflkciena rotKif mtnliK ad hoc quu<lconcupiu«niiis rtniaiant. 
I'ndc Kcundi^m Valcnum Mitjiiinuin mulierea apud Romanoa 
Mltqoitm non bihcbant viiiuin." 

*IUmi4Uo: ^Kt Oanid i.H: " Bui Daniel purpnncd m bin heart 
tliai he «rould not defile himself with the poriion of ihc Kinji's 
Bkcil, Dor with iKc wine whicK he drank: there tore he requested 



Readittgs on the Purgalorio. Canto xxii. 

And the Roman dames of old time for their drink were 
satisfied with water, and Daniel despised food, and 
Bcquircd wisdom. 

Bcnvcnuto says : " Would that the Roman ladies 
nowadays were satisfied with one kind of wine ! " 
Daniel was an example of rigorous abstinence in the 
midst of the luxuries of the Chaldees. 

The voice then alludes to the Golden Age which the 
ancients believed to have been while Saturn reigned 
over Crete : when men lived soberly, without war, and 
without any artificial ly prepared food. And with this 
the Canto concludes. 

ho secot pritno • <)unnl' oro fu belle ; 
Fc* tiaporoK con fane k ghiandcf 

of the prince of the eunuchs that he migKt not defile himBcIl" 
. . . V. Ji : '' Thcnsaid Daniel to Mel/ar, whom the prince ofthe 
cunucha had set over Daniel, Haiuiniih, Mishacl, and Aiariah, 
' Prove thy icrv-anta, I bcsccchlhce, ten tiays: and let them pvc 
us pulte to cat, and water to drink." "... v. 17; " As Tor these 
four children, God Kave them tcnowledsc and iliilt in at) learning 
and wiadom ; and Daniel had undcrslandinu in all visions and 
dreams." . ■ • v. 30: "And in all mattcm of wisdom and 
underaiandinK, that the Kine enquired of them, he found 
them ten times belter than all the mnKiciani and astrolofera 
that weie in all his realm." 

• 1^) %rcol frimo : Campare Pm-g, sxviii, tj^-i^ :— 
"QucUi chc anticamcntc poctaro 

f ct4 deir oro c suo siaio rdiee, 
Vnnc in Parnaut esto loco sognsro. 
Qui fu innoccnte t' umana radiec ; 

Qui primaiciA i scmpre, cd ngni fnillo; 
Ncltarc c qucsto di cnc ciattcun dite." 
And Ovid, .Urf. i. S9-gi :— 

" AuTca primN sata ett xtai. qus, vindice nulln, 
Sponte lUN, sine lege, fidcm rectumquc colcbat." 
i re' saporau ttm jurnM U (kiamiU, EntHAn,«\ scq.: Ovid, Wrt. L 
101-106: — 

"Ipaaquoquc immuniv raxlroque mlacla, necullts 
Skucia vomcribiis. per ie dab«t omnia lellu»: 
Contentiquc cihiiii nullo cogente, creati». 

Canto XSII. Readings oh the Purgatorio. 253 

B nittve eon tete ogni ruscello. 150 

Uelc* c IncuMc furon k vivandc, 

Che nutriro il Batisia ncl dis«Tto ; 

Perch' egU i glorimo, e Unto ^undc 
Quanta per I' Bvangelio v* i aperto."— 

The primal age was beautiful as gold ; jt seasoned 
Us iicoms with hunger, and (made) evciy strtam into 
nectar with thir«t. Honey and locusts were the 
nourish men I that fed the Baptist in the wildemesa ; 
for which reason he is »o glorious and great, as is by 
the gospel revealed unto vou." 

It should be remembered that St. John the Uaptist is 
the patron saint of Florence, f 

Arbuteoi focTut, montanaqgc fruj;ii IcKebant, 
CornaquF. ci in duris ha:rcntia mora rubctis, 
Et quae dccideruni patula Joviii art>ore Klindes." 
And Bo«thiu>, PkiU^-^h. i\-i$soI. ii, Mctr. v : — 
" Felix nimium prior actas, 
Contcnta fi deli bun arvia, 
Ncc incrti pcrdila luiu, 
Fucilt quse sera «olct>at 
Jejuni* solvere gUnde. 
Kec Rjicchica muncra norani 
Liqtiido confunJcrc mclle 
NcL' lucida vcllcra Scrum 
Tyrio misccre vencno." 
*JfrJf (or mrrJU) in thin line in a maaculine naun (iKnifyiriK 
'honey," and not to be confounded with latlt, the feminine plural 
•( •«(<,-«« apple." 
Kompaw Inf. xiii, 113. 144 :— 

" lo fui (letla citiJt che nel Batitia 
Uultt 'I primo padrone." 



Rcitctmgi on the Pnrgatorio. Canto XKUU 



Thbre is no break or change of scene at the opening or 
this Canto. At the end of the last, wc left Dante, Virgil 
and Statius standing in wonder before the mysterious 
tree, with the luscious fruit on its branches, hanging; 
far out of reach ; and high up on their left hand the re- 
freshing sight and sound of a fall of water dripptn;; over 
its topmost leaves. They had also heard the voice, 
probably of an unseen Angel, s]ieal<ing from the foliage, 
and informing the spirits of the Gluttonous that their 
ptrnancd was to be total deprivation of the fruit and the 
water, and that they should meditate upon certain io- 
iitances of commendable abstinence. 

in this Canto their punishment is described more in 

Uenvenuto divides the Canto into four parts. 

In iht I-xrst Diviiiori, from ver. I to \'er. 36, Dante 
relates the gaunt appearance of the spirits of the mut> 
tonous, whose penance ii is to endure the pangs of star- 

/» the Second DivisioH, from ver. 37 to vcr. 75, he in- 
troduces the spirit of Forese Donati, well known in life 


Canto XXIII. Ratdings on the Purgatorio. 




as glattonous, and from him lie gets an explanation of 
the punishment inflicted on this Cornice, an explanation 
only obscurely hinted at in the last Canto. 

/» thi Third Divia'vM from vcr. 76 to vcr. iii, Dante 
asks Porese, why, having delayed his repentance till his 
death, he is not still detained in Ante-Fureator>' ? 
Porcse, in his reply, tells him it is due to the inter* 
cessions of his wife Nella, the only virtuous woman in 

/« the Fourth Division, from ver. 112 to' ver. 133, 
Danle informs Forcsc who he is, and who arc his giiidcii. 

Division I. — Dante first relates how he receives a 
reproof from Viri^il for being led by curiosity to peer 
through the branches of the tree, in hopes of seeing 
from whom proceeded the mysterious voice before 

On bearing this admonition, Dante quits the tree and 
moves towards Virgil and Statius. As he does so, a 
solemn chant from unseen spirits brealcK upon his ear. 
Thi» rouses in him both delight, at hearing such deep 
devotion, and grief, out of compassion for those spirits 
suffering fromlhunger and thirst. 

Dante, according to his wont, turns for information 
to Virgil, who tells him it is the penitents that arc 

Uenire che tfli ncchi p«t ta frandti verAt 
PiccftVA io cual, come f«r aucilc 
Chi retro agli tKcellin sua vita pcrdc,* 

*IM lifai ^fri( .> ■*B«t comparaliopropriai aicut enim homoin- 
Wm 6sv reaptcit intra runoa arbon* ut vidcat aviculnm ibi 
'Ontcij, et Hepe pcrdil Icmpus itiutJIilcr, (]uin non potent illam 

re, tiA Tcctc pocta nunc mpicicbat ailcnic per fiondcB 
irborit, tit vidcrct quiK loqucbalur ibi, i):(l fruMru.quia noo 
UlaiB cagnoscere." (Ueovenuto.) *' E notatulc cho I" uc- 


Readings on the Purgalorh. Canto xxiil. 

Lo pid che padre mi dice*: — "Figliuolc,* 

Vienne oramai, clif il tempo che c' i impoftto 5 

Piil utilnivntc compartir si vnolc"— 
lo vol&i il vifto, e il pusvo non men toslo, 

Apprcwo si savi, chc parlavan sic t 

Ch« r sndar mi facean di nullo costo. 
fid ccco piangcic c cantar s' udic: 10 

celatore . . . pcidcsua viu, aodandodi rido alii ucccllint; chc 
pcrdc la tempo chc in piii utile cnna si vonrbbc spcndcre : ch« 
non i utik u nulla U vita dell' ucccllatorc tc non a la gola ; c 
pcrft mcrilcv-ilmenic la rijirende (jui." (Iluli.) Compare Shalic- 
apcare {^i You Like It, act ii, sc. 7) ;— 

'■ But whate'cr you arc 
That in thij desert intccGssible, 
Under the shade of the raciancholj* bough*, 
Lo&e and neglect the creeping hours of timci" 
* Figliuatt : The GruM DitMnarut, § 3, sayx that lome wrltrrs 
have, irom fieliitoh, formed the vocative singular figliutsU, and 
cites the present passage in illustration. The Diiuiniirio adds 
thai from the L^tin Domimt has come the familinr exclamation 
Diamintf Both the Ditionario and the Vik. J*Ua Crmtta quote 
the fiilloMiRR from the TralUUo i (Nannucci says Tr. ii) oiAlbtttano 
Giudiit da Brt-via, I-'ircnre, i6to, 4to :— 

" Non cetwarc, figliuolc, d' udire intcgnamcnta:" 
and again :— 

" Figliuolc, dtlla juvcntutc lua riecvi la dottrina." 
And thi«, frum thetraniitatiun publiiihed at Milan, iKiq, in Svo, of 
the MS. work Trallate 4tt Giuixo 4/^1* -SfOfiki di I'ra jacopoda 
Cessolc : " Aspettati, tiK'ioole ; piA nono 1 punti di quest) dadi, che 
tu non credi." These three inatnii'Ces in prose sufficiently disprove 
Blanc's iiMcrtion that [>antc altered the «urd JigiiaoU' to suit hi» 
rhyme— a statement which cannot be contradicted t<»o often. 
Nannucci (Ttoriea Ja So*ui.f. 151) cites all the above <)uoiaii(ins, 
and adds *^ PigliuoU, dal vocat. /JiWe, dimin. di fitit, cicsincnra 
priinitivji Cos) Liv, Andron. in Odytt. * Pater noster, S^tuini 
filic.' " Scarlazzini cites an instance " Mando al »ui> figlinole," 
W un~, to show that the form is not necessarily only the vocatire 

ttfr.' i^Tcoii. Lombardi (in reference io f^rlavamit) quotes 
from the fragment! of Publiua Svius the followini: sayinK; 
"Comes fncunduH in vis pro vehiculo eat" Daniello says that 
Dante beni his steps in the wake of " i savi Poeti, i quali parlavan 
■1 bene, e di si belle cose, che scguendoli, non scntiva faiica di 

.XXIII. Raidings on the Purgatorio. 


Ltfjrw MM Domiitt,* pur modo 
Tal che diletto c doKlia pftfturte.t 
— '■ O <k)ke P«dn:, chc ft quel ch' i* odo ? "— 

CominciA' io ; «d tgli :— "Ombrtche vanno, 

Fonte di lor dovcr lolvcndo il nodo."! — 15 

While 1 waa straining my eyes through ihe green 

foliage, as one is wont (o do that wastes his life after 

a little bird, my more than father (Virgil) said to mc: 

■* My Son, come on now, for the time that ia ordained 

to us must be more usefully portioned out." I turned 

tay cyea, and not le»s <|uickly my .ileps towards the 

~ , who were holding such converse as made Jt of 

Pho cost to mc to proceed. And lo ! both in laroenta> 

tion and in aong was heard : '* Labia mea Domint," 

chanted in such fashion as gave birth both lo delight 

land to ];nef. "O beloved I-'Hthcr," I began, "what 

ris thai which I hear ? " And he: " Shades, perchance, 

[who pass, while unloosing the bond of their debt." 

This means, that they are performing the due cxpia- 
lion of Iheir sins, tormented by the pangs of hunger 
ai^ thirst. The atove passage, and especially the 
mid fcrdc, denotes censure, and 6ho\vs the severe 
ebaocter of Dante's mind> to which fowling; was a 
wute of time. 

*LM* MM-' Fratn (he Miurert, Psalm ti, 15: "0 Lord, open 
tt^nltpti and my mouth ahull show forth thy praise." This 
^^halsnas part of the icrvice of Laudt for Tuesdays, and it is 
"nCaicr Tuesday that the present scene is supposed to betaking 
(^K- Hie wardi in the t'ti/ijdl^ are " Domine, labia meaaperiet, 
OMmeutn annuntiubit laudcin Tuam-*' 
*TitiluJitettci . . . iarturle : Compart Purg. vili, 13-15: — 
■ Ti liuii anti si dcvoiamentc 

1.C use! d: bocca, e con si dolcl note, 
Chc feee me a mc uacir di rnente." 
I uitade U nada : Andrcoli on this : " Sciogliondosi dni debito 
> wdditfaecnik) per il loro pcccato alia divina giustteia." 
"pwe F^ri. avi, zi-t^ -.— 
" 'Quei sono spirti, Maestro, ch' i' odo ? ' 

Dis«' io. Ed e^li a mc : 'Tu vcro apprendi, 
Hd d* iracondia van xolvcndo il nodo. ' 
ft R 



Readingi &h the Pw^atQrio. 

The spirits of the Gluttonous now come into view, 
overtaking the Poets from behind and passing beyond 
them, and Benvenuto points out that their actions and 
demeanour exactly correspond with those of the pil- 
grims in his own time, who, if they passed other 
pilgrims whom they did not know, would just glance 
back at them, but would not interrupt their meditations 
by addressing them. 

S) come i peregrin pcnoou * fanno, 

Oiugncndo per cammin f;enle nan aaUM, 
Che si volgono ad cua c non riuanno ; 
Cori dirctra ■ noi, pti^ totio mnta, 

Venendo c trapassando, ci aonmiravi 20 

Xi' anintc (urbn tacita t e d«vota. 

*i ^*grin fimnai: Seartauini «ays lh«ir thoughts would be 
upon the goal of their pil^rimBgc. " Per la forza della aviincnxa 
. . . tono pcnsoii. 11 diKiuno rcnde I' animo jitciito alle mm 
ctire, c ta sBtollcua dJi aoporc all! mcmbri." (Ollinw.) "Nona 
caso i pcnttenti qui ci ofTrano BlteKKiamenlo divereo da quello 
dcfili impcnitenti golosi d«]l' Inferno: poichi dove quelli, a r«p- 
pictcntarc il loro cterno mho, icdcvano tra piuxo c lordutK di 
acqua, neve e grandinc, cjuckIi, a cspUrc il ptoIunKitlo Kdcrc kIIc 
mcnsc ADtichc, c la Inrdilli dclk mcnibra e dcIl' ingcgno, di cui 
Bovcnte quel scdetc i caipone, carnntinano di conlinuo, nnde son 
nuiiainisfiati ■ aollcciti c pur meditabandi pcllcKrini. N't a caso 
In quest) ]>ellefirini il Poclanota il divoto portamento e rau*tcfilA 
del vilenxiv, cnc non cettsa ncmmcno quando b* tncoalrano in 
noma vivo: chi nilcnKio e tlTavitJi d' atti i bclla ulufaxionc a un 
vi/ii>, onde procedc lania abbondan/a di parole e d' atti vaiu. e 
tanto ftcemavi di de<oro al pauo c a lutla la pcnona." {Pert*, 
SelU Ctrthi. pp «», 321.) Compare aUo Rom. xiii, ij ; ■• Let m 
walk honestly, an in the day ; not in noting and drunkcnne», aol 
in chambering and wantonness." ThcK piltcrimi appear to be 
closely fbllnwiiit; 8(. Pnul'^ precept. 

f liicila ; Vclltitcllo, but no Commentator before him, obacrvc* 
that ihia word implies a contradiction of ). 10, in which ft nay* 
that (he spirit* were lumenting and singinj;. Lombard! juatly 
poidt.i out thai Dante never said that they wept and itanft on- 
ccasin^ly, hiit only when in their circuit they appro«r)ird the 
myslcriouH trees. The Pocls had. it in true, alrrady pa»ed 
the 6r»t tree, not bo far however but what ihcy coald hear Ibc 
uitcianccs of the »pirita near it. 

, Canto xxiii. Readings on the Purgatorio. 259 

Evea as do pilgrims, who, wrapt in thought, when 
overtaking on their way people unknown, tain round 
to them but (arry not; no did a crowd of spirita, 
silent and devout, come up twhind ur at a more rapid 
pace, and pxHsing by, gajced upon us in >s-onder. 

Dante now describes the lean and attenuated appear- 
ance of the suffering spirits, whose features are marked 
B by the pangs of starvation. After first citing an in- 
stance of extreme emaciation in a single individual, 
and then that of the whole population of Jerusalem 
during its siege and subsequent destruction by Titus, 
he goes on to speak of a curinus fancy prevalent 
among the theologians and mystics who professed to 
be able to read in the human face the words homo 
PCI, traced there by God himself, when man was 
created. Loofiftllow translates an extract (see below) 
from a sermon by Brother llcrthold, a I'ranciscan 
monk of Kegcnsburg, in the thirteenth centurj-.* 
l>anle says that, for those who profess to read these 

•"Now heboid, yc blcHcd children of God, Ihc AlrniKhly 
hit created you noa\ and body. And he has written it under 
your <yt* and en your faces, (hat you arc created in His like* 
OC9B. He haa written it upon your \-cTy (accn with ornainccitcd 
Iciterv With great diligence are ihcy cmbellittlied and orna- 
mcBlcd. Thi» your learned men well understand, but the un- 
Icxmcd may not understand it. The two eyes arc two o's. The 
i ut properly no letter; it only helpi the oihen ; so that Mouki 
witfi an A meant Man. Likcwiac the brovis arehcd above and the 
tl0t * dovn bctircen them are an m, beautiful with three itrokc*. 
So ia ihc car a d beautifully rounded and ornamented. So arc the 
■ortrth txaatifuUy formed like a Greek t, beautifully rounded and 
anumentcd. So is the mouth an 1 beautifully adorned and oma.- 
nunUd Now bchotd. ye i^ud Christian people, how nkilfully he 
has adnmed tou with these six Ictlcra, to show that yc arc his aim, 
and Ihat he na* created you ! Now read me an and an m and 
aaother a lof^ethrr; that iiwlU homo. Then rend me a J and an r 
and as i togetbrf ttiat spvlltt .fW. Homodti, man o( God, man of 
GodI ' (Wackcrnngcl, Vfutseket Lttebtieh, ^th edilton, Baael, 1895, 

It 1,^678.) 



Readings on the Purgatorio. 

letters in the human face, it would be easy to do so 
here, for the nose and chcck-boncs were conspicuously 
prominent in those unfortunate penitents. Dante how- 
ever only speaks of " Ohio." and not " Homo Dei." 

If, as Brother Berthold states, his M was made 
"with three strokes," it was probably the mediicval 
Q"), of which there arc frequent examples in old docu* 
ments.* This mediaeval CQ gives the shape of the 
human face better than the Roman M can do. 

Ncgli occhi t era ciascana oscura, e cava. 

Pallida netlit faccin, e tanlo tccma, 

Che dair ofi«a la pcll« h' inrormnvK. 
Non crrdo chc cos! a buccta cstremK I 25 

Ere&itonc g foKSc falln ««cca 

Per diKiunir, quando pJCi n' ebbe tema. 

• I am most f-ratefut tn my friend Mr. D. R. Pcaron, C.R. for 
hftvinK fitviiured nic with this an well as many other sugf^cations 
for this Third t-,dition. 

t AV^/i iictrhi : Tht poet Alfieri in one of his mirsiniil refefence* 
(quolcd by Ittn^oli) writes: "Sfidn Michelagnnio, non chc qujiftti 
CI vivono, « pitlori e pocli, a ritrar ni vcro c forte." Cornparc 
Ovid, .Vti4im. viii, Soj-SoS:- 

"KirttiH erat crinis; cavatumina; pallor in ore; 
I.ahra incana situ ; scabri rubtj^ine denies : 
Dura cutiH, per quatn spcctari viiecra potiBent ; 
Oasa sub incurv-m cxtabanl arida lumbu ; 
Venttiscrat pro ventre locusi pcndcrc puiarca 
PectuK. et n »pin« tantummodo crate tcneri. 
Auxc-rat arliculoA mAcies, genuumquc rigebat 
Orbt», et iinmo<lico prodibant tubere tAli." 
^a frixcM islrima : Cornparc Virg. /£■>. iii, 59Q-593: — 
"Cum subito c silvis, macie confecta suprcma, 
Isnoti novu forma viri. miserandaque cultu. 
Procedil, supplcxquf manus ad litora tcndit." 
^ Ensilont: Ensicnthon, son o( Triopa, a Thc«*a]ian. out of 
dciioion of Cere*, cut down a grove aacrcd to her. The rnraiced 
Ifodilcn jiuni^hed him by perpetual hunger, and he at last de- 
voured biB own limba. Itic story is related by Ovid iSiiUm. viii, 

Canto XXirt. Readingt on the Purgatom. 261 

In dicn tn me steiso pensnndo: — " Ecco 

L> genic chc pcrdi Jcrusalcminc, 

Quando Uaria nel fi|;lin ctie' <li becco."*— jo 

ParcMi r occhmc anclla ttcnm gcmtnc.4 

Chi ncl viso deeli uomini Uggc omo, 

Ben avTM quivi cononciuto 1' emme. 

Each was dark and cavernous in the eyes, pallid in 
the face, and so emaciated, that the skin took the 
outline from the bones. 1 do not believe that Eri- 
sichlhon could have been withered up through starvii- 
tion to such an extremity of mere xl:rn, ;it the time 
when he had the moat fear of it (i-f. of starvation). 
ThinkinK within mysell I said : " Behold the people 
who lost Jerusalem, when Marian ihrusi her bcnk 
into her own son," The orbita appeared like ringa 
without their cems, Those who in the face of men 
on read <i m o, mifjht readily here have disti»){uishcd 
the jn. 

Dante concludes his description of the Gluttonous in 
general by expressing his inability to understand 
(rora what this extraordinary emaciation proceeded, 
lorbeainnot imagine that it could be caused by the tree. 

*JV4n« nti figtio dW Ji beete^ Jenepfaus (I>e Btlh Jud. lib. vi, 
cap. i\ in his account of the horron ol the siege of Jerusalem, 
RbtcM how a noble lady, Mariam or Mar>', the daughter of 
Eluuar, maddened with hunger, killed her own little snn and 
coaked and ate half of his body. Giobcrti. a{;rccine with Vcnluri, 
tllinL* the cxpfcssion Jit' di btcco bcauiiful and hnppy, innsmuch 
a» it likcnv Ini^ mivcrabk- mother lo a bird ?f prey. 
iamilld ttmta gaumt : Compare I'ctrarch (part it, Srm. Ixvl):— 
" Pianifer 1' acr e ta terra c 1 mar dovrcbbe 

L' umaji lcf;nBjy(io, chc, iicnx' c)la, i <|uafti 
ScnxB Aor prato, o ncnjcu gemma nncllo." 
And Shakespeare iKini; L^ar, act v. Kene lii):— 
"and in this habit 
Mel 1 my father iviih his bleedintf ririKN, 
Their precious Mortc* new losi," 
AfMt Chaucer i' Ttvilm .md > 'riuyd4, book v, »t, 79): — 
"O rinj;, fro which the ruby ii ouifalle, 
O cauw til wtic, thaicauiic bast been u) lisse \"\tjmfort.^ 


Readings on the Purgatorio. Canto xxni. 

Cbi cTcdcrcbbc cbe )' odor d' un pooio * 
SI Eov-trnasw, Kcnerando brama, 
E quel d' tin' ac^ua, non sapendo como ? t 

Who could believe that the perfume of a fruit, and 
that of a spriti);. could have such influence, betfettine 
craving, if he did not krtow how ? 

Division II. — Uante now introduces the spirit 
Forese Ac' Donati, kinsman J of liis wife Gemma, and 

* r odor i' un fomo . . . E ifHel 4' nil' iK^ua : Compare Job xiv, 
Q : " Yet through the scent of water it will bud, and bring forth 
bovKhs like a plant." Biagioli noticcsi the cxprciaion "the 
perfume o( s water," and says we ha\-c a poetical proof in the 
J-'iera of Mtcbelangclo Buonarotti the yonag.i:r {Giirrm. v, act. it, 
■C. ii) that tralercan throw out a pcrfuinc :— 

" Voglio infcrir, ch' io dir non riaaprci 

Quanta mi *ia qu(I):cnliluoin sembrato 

Felice nel Roder degli orti wioi, 

Suoi aemiilicUti. >uoi bnichclt! c prati, 

£ del vcrdc dell' crbc c dclle frondi 

Pcrjictue, c dc" fior chc nucccwiW 

Vi hdon per le fci^ide o gcUlc, 

Nnn men che per le tiepide utaKioni 

Dnr vita a1 guardo, c confodar j^l! >pirti 

Ncllu HoavitJi d' odoh, c d' acquc 

Sorgenii G mormoranti." 
HiaKioli, as UKual, oinita to give the reference, by no means 
to verify. 

t (OHIO, (Icrired from the Latin ^mymodo. like mii>, from maJa. Kan- 
nucci {Ttorita dei Xomi, Pri/u:. pp. xin, xx. and fiwlJWMc (i); sapi it 
was of very frequent use a(noni;ii( old Italian n riterv, and it " ^''o^^J 
primiiiva e rcRolarc." Nannncci gives the tuo following illU^H 
trationa of its use by proac whter»: Guiltnne (Letim t, 4PV 
" Alquanio dimoitcrrlkvoi como," and (t^l. i), ** K como dicoiw ' 
I Sapiemi." 

1 Some have mnimaincd that Gemma was a sister of Vome, 
Corso, and PJccarda de' l>onati, but i'rofesaor Isidoro Del Luo|iah 
in hi* appendix to the Commento di Pino Compa^i (th-^ 
Comfiigii i Itt iuii Cnmica, Pkircncc, 1879. 4 voIh., tfvo), v-ol. ii, 
uo, specifically dcnicx thi». " Non ci^Hurn perb, come Io ebiatna 
il Tommasio, era a Danic il Dottati; la Gemma Donati era 
6glia di Manctto ; Corso, i-'oresc, Piccarda. di Simonr." And in 
voL i, p. 16S, after speaking of the feuds of the Crrchi Mith the 
Donati, rrnf. I>ct Lungo adds: ''Ci troviamo Manetio de' 

itni I 

Canto XXIII. Readings on Iht Purgatorio. 


his intimate friend, though certain vituperative sonnets 
addressed to Dante.and attributed tu Forese, if authentic, 
would show that their friendship was not uninlerrupted.* 
The brother of Forese, Conso de' Donati, ihe celebrated 
Guetph leader, wa& Dante's bitter foe. He was the 
head of the Neri, by whom Dante was driven into 
banishment According lo Buti, Forese had an 
unenviable reputation for gluttony. 

Dante first relates how Korese reco^ises him. 

Gii eta f in Btnn)ir«r chc xi gli alT&ma, 
Pet laciiKJone anuoi non maiiifi:.>.ta 
Di loT magrssxa e di lor trtsla Miuanuk ; ( 

thuri, uiiA Ae' ft%idll dl Beatrice, t probsbitmefft« quello che 
I>>ntc punc sccondo fr« gli ai»tci tiuoi <1opi> il Cavalcanti, e fa 
DftTtccipc dcllc proprte lacrim« n«lla morlc di uuelln f;<intt)i;. 
Dfttilc vi ha poi anchc Manclto Donati, padre dclla buona lua 
Gemma, tl (luale fu uno de' [>ritni a lencT 1' ufTicio di Camar- 

*The Sonnets ue reproduced by Prof. Del Lungo, with his 
cotntneni* upon them !/>p. til. vol. ii, fa. buybi^)- There is n 
tnui»laiii>n ai thctn in IJanU ami his Cirde, by Oantc (iabiicl 
RoMKtti. London, 1^;], pp. 120^33. 

* Ghl ir,i in iimmtrar . . . Di hr magrfiiM : Oantc repeals Ihe 
■ensc of this in II. jq, 60, whcr« he bc^ii roiciic nol la make him 
sp«ak white he if) Mill under Ihe cRccls of his lirsl wonderment 
at his repulsive appc«rancc. In {"urf^. xm, 2», ai, wc And Dante 
ii3lv\% Vireil lo solve tbb doubt for him, which Virgil docs. 
iHnte ask* :— 

'• Come *i ptiA far maKTO 
LJk dove r uupo di notnt non (occa .'" 
lit tDuM not understand how impalpable spirits, who have no 
M(ri nf food, could (jrow thin from the lack ofii, Virgil's answer 
111'* kiding feature in Canto )txv, flhowini; how bodily feelings 
•': iiven lo bouIb in Hell and Purgatory in ordct thai they msy 
"t^RO their puniihment. 

fI>T*«Mii primarily means the scale of a fish or of a serpent, 
" tit husii ot anything. In Sermon ai, g viii, of the Quitrt- 
j* «( Padre Scgnefi (Turin. 1876). he saya men will ever 
•wtoOod the husk, and keep the fruit for themselves : "Or 
*«&ilevoi? Gli date forsc il mcglio chc sia au vostra tavoln? 

WOa no. Anxi gU lolctc dare scmpic il pcggio. Per voi 



Readings m the Purgatoric, Canto XStiL 

Ed ecco del prorondo delta testa* 40 

Voisc It me gli occht un' ombtti, c guards fi«a, 
Pni criilA forte: — " Qoal Kraxia m' i questa ? "t— 

I was still in wonderment a( u-hat could tlius a-hunger 
them, through the as yet unreveiLleil cnuse of their 
leanness and their tlestjuamation ; and lo! from the 
innermost cavitieit {iJ. ej'e'SOCkets) of his head a 
shade turned his eyes upon me, and looked (at me) 
attentively; after which he cried out loudly: "What 
grace to me is this ? '' 

Dante looks at the gaunt attenuated figure, whose 
features convey' no recognition to his mind, but. as 
Isaac fancied he could identify Jacob by bis voice, so 
docs Dante identify the well- remembered sound ol liis 
old friend's speech. 

Mai nan I' avrrt riconoaduto al viso; 
Ma nella voce sua ml fu palcse 
Cid ch« 1* aspetto in si av«a conquiso.J 4^ 

tenete le polpa, al cane date I' o«»o, dftte Ic Kquamc, date le 
scaglie, dftte gli avanii pi& vili. Orsi cool appuntn alruni irxt- 
Uno Iddio, lo Irattan da cane. Gli voglion dnrc Bcniprc il 
pcegio," This is Ihe only passage in the Dirina CommfJia in 
which the word occurs. The Commentators generally render it 
t^tU ituiridiia. The Oraii ftiiianario sayi that the more utual 
form is ifiionoM, and rarely t^namo. 

*f>refdndo dtlhi letta : In vemt m we read that :— 
" Ncgti occhi era ciascuna oscura c cava," 
and now, when ne iipealta iif one of ihe ihactcK moving his e^F«a 
from the inniTmoM cavities of his head, he paints with Ictnble 
cmpbasit the hollowncas of the eyes. 

f Qimi gnuia m' i qu4ttu t Compare Psrf. vii, ig; — 
"Qual mcrito o qual Krs/ta mi (i mosira t" 
And Purg. viii, 65, 66 : — 

" Su. Corrado, 
Vicni a vcdei chc Dio pci graKin vnl^c." 

trmfutip; In Irantlating this word "ublilcrHtcd" 1 lake my 
stand upcn Blnnc's intcrpictation which is the bcki I hav« 
found. " Couguiti*. pnrlicip. di conqnUtn. Sebbene i voca- 
botnri italiani dtcno a queato vcrbo il uKni^ di vnuirr, gf/Hn- 
gttt, sbtalttrt, aitnitliiliirt, io oondimeno son d' opiniane che 
nbbia 1* isteiuo valore del IrancMc tvnifiiii, usurpaio in signil. 


Canto XXiII. Readings oh the Purgatario. 265 

Qacita fRvilln * tult« mi raecc<c 

Mia ccnosccnza >lla canibtaix labbia.t 
B rxwitai Ja faccia di l-'orese.} 

ptd estetto ; poichf la coitquista lr«e seen per lo piii distmiionc 
c ruina. Sarcbbc adunquc qua&j tiinoninio di: ceiH/uiiMrt o 
vimttn, 11 Rolo luoco <U:l\* U. C. dove innquisii n irovi, cioi 
Pifff- xriit, 4$, '.Wrt n//ta pw; tua mi fu paUu do ekt V ttipitle 
tm *i aft^ arttfuiso,' siRtiilicai : ' lo la riconobbi alia voce : avcndo 
il DUO aapctlo, il nun voltq bMubIc, tnUlmciMc dintrutto, invoHi, 
1 KmbUnii che p«itavu durante le tnia viia.'" The Gtan 
thiiimarto quotes CaslrUetTu. Gianla at ragg. rfi iUmbo. lib. i: 
"Conquiut e vace iuliana ed c inlera latins, cioi Ccndnt 
Irainnf]. Ni [eeiiAfr] xijcniftc* ' Quel In cKc fu cantiuistalo.' " 
Scjirtaz^ini m ni« more recent Milan Cummt-ntflry thinks thnt 
althouxh acme intciprcl ctrnqmsn as "conquered, nubducd," and 
»omc ■■destrojcd, wretled. annihilated," llie l«o intcrprcUlionit 
came ti> the name ihinji, ai Itlanc remnrk« above. TtM broader 
•CMC oi conquctt is to bring ruin in its train. 

*fjnils; Others rend yin-riia, " the voice," but Uanic haa ju»l 
taid voct in verse 44 ; anaJavHin means that the voice acted like 
a ftparli. 

tUbbia: Fateia. atptito {CraM Dixionsrio). See fa/ lix. 112, 
(iwtnotc, in Rtadinip mu iht fnftmo, and illuMrations therein 
pvcB. CARiparv Guido CnvalcKitli (in Kiitw di Diivrsi Autori 
Tmtmi, VineRia, isj^J, p. dS:- 

"Vcdcr mi not dclla sua labbia utcire 
Una %i bella Donna, che la tnente 
Cotnprcnder non la puA." 
And Pnticiano, La Gialra, lib. 1, M. 24 : — 

"F, quale i uotn di si acciira labbio, 
Che Tuggir pustui il mio lenacc vischio ? " 
And Lapo Gianni, Cxnjone bctnnnin^ Ax^ttua ftgura aiioiw- 
maite {in SeriUur'i J4I I'rintp SfMlf. Fircn^e, 1816, vol. ii, p. 

"i) — 

"Ondc niia Ubbia si nv>nifica(a 

Divenne alli)ra ohint( '. che in Twn parca." 
f F»rft4 ! ThtH pctu>n, at we Khowcil at p. 163 watt brother n( 
fSccatda (Par. lii), and Coni« de" Oonali, the powerful chief of 
ihefaciion nf ihc N*n. Of bim the Falto jfJurrtKcio iiav«, p 4_i&: 
"Pottiic dc' l>onati, (ratello ili McMcrCorso Donat! involio in 
qanto vicio, c (u coatiii dclicaio uomo e piacevagli o^ni bunno 
tAn r fu i^ndc amico di Dante ; pci per parte |i.c. by tifil Jii- 
MnJt] divcniarono nlmici ciot che Dante era di parte Biauta e 
pMr*« ill parte Nirtt." Oianatn {I'u't^atoirt de DubU, p. 384^ 
afltidinjc to the fact nf Forcac and his holj'-mindcd M&lcr being 
kiiufbU of Dante's wife, obtervea : " Uantc parte peu de u famillc. 


Reading oh the Purgaton'o. Canto xxiil. 

Never should I have recognized him by his face ; but 
ill his voice waa made manifest to mc thai, which his 
aspect hod obliterated within itself. This spark re- 
kindled in me all my (former) knowledge of rhe 
uttered countennncc, and I Tccognized the features 
of Forese. 

Benvenuto, pointing out that Dante never would have 
known by the face that he was looking at Forese. oI>- 
serves that a prolonged indulgence in gluttony so 
changes a man's appearance, that Domitian, who had 
been a beautiful youth, grew ugly, bald, and fat, and 
In a letter told a friend that nothing was more de> 
lightful, nor more short lived than beauty. 

Forese begs Dante not to heed the wreck of his fac€, 
but to tell him who he is, and who arc his companions. 

— ** Dch non contendere * all' asciatia scabbia 

Pucouf» In Divine CAin£di«. HiatHs In remplit d« ses rayons; 
maiB janiaiii Ic poctc nc nous cntrclicnt ni de Gemma Donati sa 
femtnc, ni dc xca liis, qui ccjvcndant semblcnl n'avoir paa iti 
indigncs dc Icur gloricux ptre. puisquc d<nix d'cnirc tax, Pierre 
el Jac(jue«, devinrcnt m:k coin men tat cur ». Cent done a«c on 
plniiir inailcndu qu'on trduve dans un coin du Purgatoire une 
Kc^nc d'intencur, un Kouvcnir dc* premier* jours, i\ii Danic, 
nouvcl ipoui, trouvaii danH la maison dc»a fcmmc de fialcmclics 
affection «, aviinl cjuc In guerre civile fut venue ditruirc cc (niKilc 

* ctmleiiiiert : I conrexn tn feeling very undecided whit:h af two 
intcrprctstionti of this verb to adopt. ScarlHr/ini thinks ihrrc 
are only two, and nciiher of them present the s.|if;hl*-si diffivulty 
—cither ia) to explain conUnJtn Atatltitdtit in the sense of fw 
munle, liiidart Undrre I' attemimu^ He w-ouUl translate lite 
pAHsage ; " Heed not the dialigufcment of my feature*," etc. ; 
or (6) to take tontaultn in the nenoe i>f"*io deny, to refuac." 
In his Leipzig Cnmmenlaiy U'^TS) Scanaxzini, while thinkinj; 
both Ihcfic inteipccialiiinii good, aitKhtly inclines in the latter, 
but in hiK Milan Commentary (1690) hi* view seems to have 
undergone a change to the former of the 1*0 interprctatioos, 
which makci tonUtidtri =^ " tton fcrrnarc I" alteniione/' Th«rc 
do not seem to be warning examples of the word bein|; u«cd in 
Ihat Knae. boih the Vac. Mia C'riurii, and the Oran fJutoaarM 

Canto XXIII. Readings oti the Purgaiorio. 


Che mi fcolora,"— pregavt,— " la pcllo. 
Hi a difctto di carn« ch' io abbia ; 


3U0IC, to illuslratc ihis, from the ^^th acrmoti of Pra Giordano 
■ Rtpalu, oi the OtAtt of ihe PreJic4itori, ■ 300- 1306, MS. : "Snnto 
Sicfzno tu dsio in guardia d«|;li Apostoll sopra tc donnc cbc 
a(nmini»traviiiio Ic nccciuiudi dci;li Apontpli i quali non 
poUano contendere a.l)c cose mondBne." This interprctalian 
u> ma overwhelmtn£l)> lupporled by l.^na. Buti, Vellutctlo, 
Daniclto, V'olpL, lA>mbardi, Co»Ij, Itrunonc Bianchi, Tommas^o, 
Praiicclli (who reads inltiuUn}, Camcrini, fhiUtiakn, and Oia- 
oam. that I feel compelled, somcwhitt against the grain, to adopt 
II. But the interpretation oi imundett in iheacnae or"lo refute, 
lo deny." i» by no means 00c to b« overlooked. It in tupported 
by tome very good authurities, namely Wittc, BUnc, Giuliani, 
Andrcoli, Lamcnnaii, Itiagioli, PoUtio, and Ccsan 1 and cen- 
Itndtn has been more frcqucnity uacd in this scnac (hen in the 
other. Compare Petrureh, part iv. Son. ix ^quoted tiy CcBari, and 
both the Dictionanes): — 

" lo per mc prc);o il tnio aceibo dolore 

Non sian da lut le lagrimc contCBC." 
^ And Petrarch, puit ir, Cant, i, at. H:^ 

**Tu vedra' Italia c I' onotatariva, 

Canion, ch' a|;lt occhi mici cela e contcnde, 

Nnn mar, non poggio o fiumc. 

Ma solo Amor." 
(Voc. Oiiii(.>, after expressing his dislike lo the previous 
tation, adda: "Si piitrebbe prender amUiuittt n el sign if. 
lino di : ricman, non volcr riciikarc ni mio akpctto il e<Hnpi- 
mcnto delta niia pre|;hicra, ma dimini." The alrongtul advocate 
of the intcrpreution "rcfuac," it Ccsari {Oelletu, vol. ii, p. 418}: 
**Qiie*to con(ftnl(re ... a me par lutto chiaro e nctla. Cim- 
UiUftr \ uul pur dire, ittgart, vitiait. . . . tiek frtgava 
•Ml lanUmJtrt (lugiite)^ptr (omlo dUla l<flU cajs e leolortl*, 
t detin magn;t^ ck' io ahhia . . . il tvro ; ifa dintmeto, etc." Bath 
Ceaari and Blanc recall the fimilurity of thin pas«ai;c with that 
Ml /a/, avi, iS, c( ir^, where the shades "f three l-'lnrcn tines. 
Mice great men. hut whose hideous crime has reduced them to 
the Inaiait dcplh« nf dcKrndation and inlamy, appeal to Dante 
nut lodiuegaid them, or refuse to listen to them on account of 
tlicir blackened and peeled faces. It is remarkable that, in thcHC 
two different passages, alluMon is made in both to the alteration 
IB the texture of the skin {btvlh, udhbin): and to the colour of 
tlw <dcin '[liHla tilt uoloru la ^Ut). I mu>t reluctantly K>^e up 
this latter interpretation which I should have preferred lo 
render thus; ■•Ah do not deny mc (the trmh),"' was his prayer, 
"because of this 'ncabby rind' (ax I>i. Sliailwtli renders ill which 
wi dlscolDun my skin, nor of the want ol flesh that I may have 


Readings on the Purgatorio. Car!o xxill. 

Ma ditnmi Jl ver di tc, e chi son quelle 
Due itnime chc lb li fanno scorta : 
Non rimancr chc lu non mi favdlc." 

"Ah," cmreated he, "do not give heed to this dry 
leprosy that discolours my skin, nor to the want of 
flesh that I may have; but tclt mc the truth about 
thyiidf, and who Ait those two spirits yonder who 
benr thee compiiny. Do not dcUy in apcalcing to mc." 

we shall sec by Dante's reply he had been looking 
ixedly at Forcse's altered countenance, hardly bein^ 
able to recognise the once familiar features, and Hen- 
vcnuto remarks it is as though he would say: I am 
full ofthc deiiirc to make thcc speak thyself to gratifj' 
my curiosity, but am really not capable of answering 
thy questions ralionally at this moment. 

— " I. (I fnccin tua, ch' io laKnmai gill inona, 55 

Mi ik <ti pianK«r mo non raJROf dogiiA,**— * 
Rispoa' io lui,— <* vceeendola si lorta.t 

—bui tcti mc the (ruth about thyself," etc. Witle Iranilatea: 
" Versngc nicht dtni diirrcn Ausiatz . . . D«ine AntworL" 

*Mi Ji Ji pitingrr mo non iHiMnr Jt^lia: Thix reading i» the 
one adopted by Wittc and by Dr. Moore {Tulte U Oftrt di 
J)«»lt Alichitn, Oxford. iS94)< There ia a ^-c^y impartant vari- 
ant which wcurs in thi- Vatican MS., in one of tlie Chieu u 
well as in other MSS., Mt Jd Ji fi,vig^r ma miuor U dt<elia, 
which would quite alter the kchhc ot the pa8iki>i;e- Lana aotrt 
not g,ivv this latter reading;, but intcTptets the words as if he 
did so: "-f wept for thee in the iirst life when thou didst die. 
but now I do not Kiiete for thee thusi, loi I «ce thee not among 
the lo«1. but nn the way to reach life eternal.*' The rcadinf; om 
minor df^tm i* also found in a Kiceardi MS., in the /'a/ni* 
llor<iKfio, and in the early Mantua edition, ind come« to the 
»ame sijcniri cation. Scartaxzini would |>ii.'rci' the readini; mo 
mim>r la dogita, as according better with I'urg. Iv, 11^ t^ iiq^ 
where Dante tells lielacquu that he no loni;er (eel* any unca«>' 
mixcivingH about bis Mlvntton ; onl)' afiwinM lh!«, Scanazaini »aya, 
the content vt^ufnJola ti torla ttpeatcii too clearly in favour of 
the usual rcHdint:, the one I have adopted. 

\ vifi^tiutoUi li torlit: In Hell {In/, xv) Dante fjavc way Io 
unbounded Ktief at iwcing his old instructor Brunctio Latini 
amonK the luiri, aixl with a face thai was xurched \t«Ha) nearly 

Canto XXIII. Headings on the Purgatorio. 269 

Per& mi di', per Dio, che ■! vi afonlin;* 
Non mi far dir mcnir' io mi maraviglio, 
cut nval pu& dir ( chi i picn d' altra vu^lia." — 6a 

"Thy lace," I answered him, "which once I wept 
fot when dead, makes me now weep with no less a 
grief, seeing it so diefiKured. Tell me therefore, in 
the name of God, what so denudes you ; do not make 
me speak while I um inoTvcllinc;, for ill can he speak 
who is full of other longing." 

Foresc concisely answers Dante's question as to his 
emaciation, and adds that all the other spirits arc 
undergoing a similar punishment. Their hunger and 
thirst are caused by the sight and the smell of the 
water and of the fruit, which, as the Oltima rem,-Lrks, 
sharpened their desire, and this desire dried up their 

beyond rcco|;nitton. But there in n jtreat diffcrcacc in the con- 
dtUon of a wml supposed 10 be in llcll, from one in Purgatory. 
It is the conttasi between eternal ■laiiinaliitn and sure and certain 
bopc of s^lvntion. Hrunctlo'§ countenance would tcmain ncoictitd 
to all eternity, but Porcsc's vaitc is quite diffcrcnl. When Dante 
vcpt over hi»>dead friend he knew not what was to be his future 
destiny. But iww, aecins him in PurKatory, tic has full ahuir- 
ance that hi* ^uffrrings arc IkiI for a while, and therclotr tells 
him that his altccci) fvalurct {jmciit InHiit) %\\e hint Ictks i:aui>c 
fftf bitter weeping than when he mourncl for him al hit death. 
lJen\«nulo intetprrt» (irrtti, " laniufn iraniimutatum ab ilia." 

*H i/o^lia: W'c munt comp.ire this c:iprc»sion with dtutut 
in I. 2S- The lilrral meaning of buccia is the rind or 
\ of any plant. The literal meaning of s/ogliare is to strip 
off the lca%cs, hence 10 "denude." As a plant i> covered wiih 
leaves and thu( iKautilWd, a» are the bonei covered with Hcsh 
snd with a healthy tolour. Compare PMrg, xxiv, j8, jg. where 
Dante is speaking of another Glutionou* spirit undergoing the 
••tee punishment, vhich he describes by the verb filuaart. >./. to 
ptwck the F^pci from off a vine, and with the allegorical sense 
of craduallT coniumtnK the body:— 

" liov' ei sentia la piaica 
Delia itiusliiia che mi li pihicca." 
t A'oit mi /jr Jir . . . Chi in al fitii Air: Toroma»tc> rcmaiks 
tbat this reiteration of dir is, because (|uitc artless, by no means 

Zjo Rtadmgi on tht Pargaiorie. Canto xxilL 

Zd c^ ■ «w ;— " Dell' etcriM conHglio 
CSidc Tirtb tiell' acqm, e nctia piants 
Riinaia retn\* and* io d m' u«otttgHo.4 

T«tu etU Kcntc chc punxcDdo caDU,t 

Per sejiiitar la gola oltn miBura,] 6g 

in bmc c in kIc qui u rifa &atit«4 

Oi bcre c 4i ntBnpMr n' acccruk can 

L' odor cb* c»ce del pomo,^ c ddto ipruzo** 
Chc ■■ dUicndc Mt per la wrdunt. 

*fimmla Rimata rttro : We are ta infer that the Poet* had 
already left the Tree wnvc distance behind them. 

tm' diurflrfJio: Othrnt read mi toiligUo, but the difTeteoce li 
wholly urumportant. 

IftmtgtmJo cuntt : We may concladc that the apirita oaly 
wept and Mng at ihcy drew near one or other of ibc irecK. 

%P«r KfiiiUur la gitU oUra miiura: Compare St Tlvomas 
Aquinas (Samiw. TAcoT. pan ii, 2^. qu. cxtviii, art. 1): "Gula 
Don nominat [Grtgvriiis] quetntibet appetilum edendi et bibendi, 
Bcd inorciinatuin. Dicitur autem appditoa inordinatua cs co 
qu6d rcccdit ab ordine rationix, in quo bonnDi virtutia noralia 

Ij li ri/d lanU : Danic etacwfaere apcalci of sptriu going to 
become beautiful. CnnipiiTC Purg. a, 75 ;— 

" Quaai obbliando d' ire ■ £arsi belle." 
And Pirg- «vi, 31 :— 

** crcalura chc li mondi. 
Per toinar bella a colui chc ti fcoe . . ." 
^ porno: Dante uses f<ymo as a Hymbal of the hlgheil Qood. 
In Imf. xv), 61, he says to the three Florcnlinen: '* Laacio lo 
(elc, e vo per doki potni." And, a> VirKil b taking leave of 
Duitc at the enirancc into the Terrestrial Paradiac (Pafj*. 
xxvii, tts-ii7).hc layB tohim -. — 

" Quel dolce pome, cbe per tanti r«mt 
Ccrcando v« la cura dei mortali, 
Ofijp porri in pace le tue f»nii." 
And in Ptirg. Kxaii, 73-74, Chri&t Himself is spoken of aa 

il " mclo flAr ap^-U-trie], 
Che del tuo iwino [/rut/J gW Angch fa fihiotti." 
On the smell of the water, mc Joh xiv, <) :—" Vet through the leeol 
of water it will bud, and brin|; Coirth bougha like a plant." 

** ipraixo oTtptMiia: Thif the Gnin DUic/nario cufl^ta^ tube 
"the diitribution of any liquid matter in %-cry minute quanlH 
li«s," ifl Bngliah "apray." It it only used liiia once la the 

Canto XXIII. Readings on the Purgtiorio. 




And he to me : " By the Eternal Will, power descends 
into the water, and into the tree you have lef^ behind 
you, whereby t become thus emaciated. All this 
multitude who, while they lament, aing, because they 
followed their appetite beyond mcjRote. in hunger 
and in lhir»t are here renewing their sancttftution. 
The odour that issues from the fruit, a.nd from the 
spray which is difTused all over the verdure, enkindlea 
io OS the desire to cat and to drink. 

It is not merely passing suff^ering, Forese tells Dante, 
that they are ondergojng. The intensity of their 
torment lies in the continued renewal of it. but he 
hastens to add that they all strive to think of it as a 
mercy fjranted to them in accordance with their desires 
and, by way of testifying to their complete submission 
to the penance imposed upon them by God, he compares 
it to the way that Our Lord set His face steadfastly to 
drink the Cup of suffering which His Father had given 

Some Commentators understand the renewal of tor- 
ment to come from the return to the same tree mam 
and again. Others think that, as the shades go round 
the Cornice, they meet with similar trees at different 
intervals. \Vc will assume that there are two. the 
lirat being the offshoot of the Tree of Knowledge, and 
the second one from the Tree of Life. 

OMm ConMMi/ta, bat It is feund in the works both of Bcmi 
•ad Pttki. Sec Puki, ^org. Magg. xxvit, »!. j6 : — 

" II vcnto par certi spraxii avviluppi 
Di sanguc in aria con nodi «eon gruppi." 

And Uorg. Uagg. xxviH, na ;— 

"Cenvicn chc %e n' appicchi qualche iprojua." 
Iwnmairfo thinint ipnttxo corre»pon(i« Io asfergi in Virgil, 
Stt.'JSa, lii, $34'" 

"Obleclse salsa spumant adaperginc cautca." 


Readings on the Purgalon'o. Canto xxill. 

B non pure una voJla, quccto spuuo* 70 

Gtritndo, ni rinfr»cA nostra pcna; 

lo dico pKnK, tf dovrei dir toltnzio; t 
CM quclla voglia all' arbarc ci mcna, 

Che mcoi Crlilo lieto a dire : ' Ell," J 

Quaiiila lie liberfi con la ma vena."— 75 

And not once only, as we cirde round this path, is 
our penalty renewed ; t say [lenalty, and I ouf;ht to 
say solace. For that same Will leads us to the tree, 

* f^iso : The imper meaninic of fitaxta i* the lurfitc* »t the 
^ound, and ultinialciy "floor." Compare tn/. xiv, I3*i5: — 
" Lo >pii/20 crA urt' arena aridi e tpcssa, 
Non d' altra foggia faUa che colei, 
Che fu dfl' piti rti Calon gii «Appft«sa." 
Wc find it in tlic scnu-c of "floor," in the I'MCgi it Tirra Santa 
di Lionardo Frcseobatdi t d' cdtri dtt Secoln xiv, Florence, iS&i, 
(My own copy was given lo mc by a much lamented fritm), the 
late Marcheic Dino de' Frescobilui, a dcKcendant of the author.) 
See fi. 15, where the palace of Aleundria is described: "Era 
bene innino al ler^o dalla kmU pieno lo spajzo di bclli»iini drappi 
e tappclt." In Itorgh'mi, StuJi, cd- Gt^li, I'lorenec, 1855, pp. 147- 
8, the author utters his inditcnatiun a^ainat the Commentators 
who attempt tn Mre in t^xvt merely an alteration from if^iio for 
the sake of the rhyme, and he ad<t> that "this accursed rhyme ■■ 
the snlvnlton of tgnoramuRcn." .T/viitii - inTctvalhirn. ,C/wijo™ 
irifKin. I'rom tpass" d' Hn<i tu'u IB derived f^>:t>ir< to nwecp, and 
^irdr ijuctb} ipiiao is prcciitclv Ihc same as girar auttU via or gitar 
qiullo MiiiiiM, i.(. either " pain " or '" beaten floor. * The qiioiation 
above, from Inf. xiv, shows Ihat the word wan not ut«d for the 
ihymc'd Mike, as il in not at ihc end ot a line. 

fialU:io: Compare St. Thomns Aquinas (Summ. Tht(4. pars 
iii, Supplcm. Append, qu. ii, art. a): " Videtur qudd ilia poena nit 
voluntaria, quia illi qui Kunt in pur^torio. rectum habeni cor. 
Sed hiec est rectitudo cordis. u( quis voluntatem suam divins 
voluntati conformel, ut Augu»tinus dicit, cone, i, in p*al. 32 a 
princ. Brgo citm Deu« velit coa puniri, ipsi iDam pcenam 
voluntaria auMincnt. Pneterea, omnia napienavutt illud nine qao 
non potest per\-cnire ad finem intcntum. Sed illi qui sunt in 
pur^atorio. sciunt se non posse per\-enire nd gloriam, nisi priiks 
punianttiT. Ergo vol un I puniri." And ffwo. v, 3: "And not only 
to, but wc filory in tribulntions also." 

I Eti : Coinpare St. Afatr. xxrji, 46: "And abenit the ninth hour 
Jesus cried with a loud voice. Eli, Eli, lama sabacbthani ? that is 
to tayi My God, my God, why bait thou fortakcn mc f " 

Canto XXIII. Readings on the Purgahrio. 


as Ic4 CliriRt rejoicing to say ' Eli/ when He ransomed 
us with His blood (/i(. vein)." 

Benvenulo says that the truth of this may be seen in 
the purgatory of the heart (iw purgatorio moraii\ because 
the man who wishes to purge himself from the sin of 
Gluttony will abstain from toothsome food and from 
luscious wines, although it mil seem to him an exceed- 
ingly hard struggle to forgo his accustomed dainties. 
And note that penitential expiation is in a man's life- 
time more voluntary, because tt is his own will that im- 
poses it; but the expiation of Purgatory is by the will 
to endure, because the spirits there accept their penance 
voluntarily, and, while performing it earnestly, aspire 
to reach their heavenly country, and, to attain that, 
entreat the help of the intercessions of others. 

Division HI. — Dante had been told by Belacqua 
{Purg. iv, 150} that the souls of those who delayed 
their repentance till death, had to remain in the Aftti- 
Purgatorio for a term equal in duration to the length 
of their lives on earth, and as Dante knew that his 
friend Porcse had only died hvc years before, and 
probably knew also that he had delayed his repent- 
ance until the very end of his life, he is surprised to 
find him already in one of the Cornices of Purgatory 

He evidently knew that I'orcse had made some sort 
of repentance, or else he would not have expected to 
find him even in the A nti-Purgaiorio, but in Hell writh 
Ciaccoand the other GluttonK. 

Ed io a lai :— " Forne d& quel dl 

Ne) qual tnuiaiti mondn a migtior vita,* 

* migtior vita ■ Lombardi remarka that lluy who arc lost change 
the world for » worac life. 

II. 8 


Readings on the Purgalorio. Canto xxill. 

Cinqu' anni * non son v&lii f inStift K qui. 

Sc prima J (u la puHsu in (e finita 

Di pcccar piii, chc suncnisse I' orn 
Del buon dolor § ch' a Din r>c rlmaritajj 

Come ftc" tu quassfi venuto ? H Ancnrn. 
lo I) crcdca trovar laggii) di sutto, 
Dove tempo per tempo si rielora."— 


*Cinqu' iinni, etc. Ucnvcnulo »«y» lluil, according to the text, 
Forcsc must have died in 1296 (" quasi dicat : lu mortuu* ck jam 
quasi quinquc Minis clap>i«, scilicet in millcaimo duccnlcnimo 
nonajccKimu aexio: hoc przauppoaiio, comt u' t» ptnuto amor di 
fuit, ad vcrum purca tori urn," Mc.)- 

tv^jt: Compare Pclrarch, part i. Son. 40 (in tome editions 

" Or volgc Si^nar mio, I' undccini' annn 

Ch* 1' fut aommcMio jil dtspictalo ^iogo." 

XSt ^rima . . . Di tuctar, et scq.: The OJtiwd Comanlo, which 
profesaca to have been written by a coo temporary of Pante, rcfeni 
to thiapasaage, possibly not without foundation of fuel : " V. quest e 
cose sa bene I' Autore per U converthite (meant for ttmvtfiasioHe) 
continava, ch' cILi avcva col dctlo Forcse; cd caio Autore fa 
queeli che, per amore che aveva in lui e familiarilttde, lo induue 
alia confcsaione: e* confcssoau a Dio anzi I' u1tinv> fine." Sec 
also Convivto iv, Kti. 

^ bvon t(oU>r : Compaie a Cor. vii, 10 : " For godly sorrow 
workelh repentance to salvation not to be repented of: but the 
sorrow of the world workcth death." 

\\a Dio H* rimarila : Compare Par, xii, 61-63, where the 
espousala o( St. Dominic were aaid to have l>ecn celebrated al his 
baptiam :— 

" Potchi Ic iponulizic fur compiute 
Al sacro fontc tnlni lui e ta fede. 
U' ai dotir dt mutua salute ; " etc. 
Tlic man that falls into ain it, an it were, divorced from God. 
We find in many paaaagca of tbc Old Tentamcni fr.f. £:rA. vciii, 

il7; ffoiM ii, 3) the idolatry of Israel called ils adultery. There- 
ore, in like manner, the repentant sinner is uid to be re-wcdded 

^Come te' Ittquaui vtnulo? : Some read di ijma inatead o!qu4istA, 
DilTcrcnccs have arisen among modern Cornmcntatora ax to 
whether the note of intcrrogalion ihould be placed a(ter vtiiuto or 
■tivofii, the next word, but neither MSS. nor early editions can 
decide that point, for, aa Scariaiiini observes, orthographical 
aixna were not invented until a later date. By far the larger 
number of cdiliona place the note of interrogation after amora. 

Canto XXIII. Readings on ihe Purgatorio. 


And I to him: " Fore«e, from that day when thou 
didst change the world for a belter life, five years have 
not yet lolkd by. If the power to sin more was 
ended in thee, before the hour supervened of the 
goodly sorrow which re-wcds us to Gad, how is it 
that thou itrt arrived up here? I thought to find thee 
still down there below, where time (of penance] malces 
reatilution for time (wasted)." 

Forcse answers Dante, telling him that the intercession 
of his wife Netla. and her virtuous devout life, have 
been efficacious in helping him to ascend moi^ 
speedily. Bcnvcnulo relates that Nella did all in her 
power to check Forcsc in his excessive gluttony, and, 
though she had to prepare the dishes iikcly to tickle 
his fastidious palate, she never herself gave way to 
excess, and after his death devoted herself to praying 
for the peace of his soul, and as wc know from 
Purg, iv, 134, that such intercessions would be listened 
to in heaven, we may infer that, from her prayers having 
been heard, she was known by Dante as a saintly 

Ond' efili a mc :— " SI tosto m' ha condotto 
A ber lo dolce aiuenua'* de' martin 


Bianchi and ScattniJiini point out that, if that punclufttion be 
adopted, anfora tnuBi be taken in the Dense of >i ywrM' ora toii 
prfSlo. " Haw U it that thou ait arrived up here »> vonn (or, at 
this time) ? " 

*tauHtio: From the Latin abiintkiiim, wonnwoud. In its 
conjunction here with ihUt, it is sufpo«eil to be bittcrto the (aate, 
but «*re«t to the intellect. Likewise the torments of Purgatory 
are supposed to be bitter to endure, but sweet to the m>uI, as they 
prepare it to enter into Life F.lcrnal. ItoUe Hiumioimn inMuncK 
of Ine figure in rhetoric Mywcmn, a seeniinK paradox, such as there 
arc numcroos inHlanccs of both in Greek and Latin, r^'. .■ — 

(Eurip. Htfmbtt, 6ia). 
Comparv alMt Horace, Carm, 1, xjtaiv, 2 : — 

S 2 

ZjS Readingi on tite Purgaiorio. Canto xxill. 

La Nelln*' tnia col pjanser sua dirolto. 
Con suoi pTcghi dcvoti c con soapiri 

IValto m' ha della coita i nve »' asfeitM, 

E libcruto m' ha dccti altn f;iri. 90 

Whereupon he to me : '* It is iry Nella with her over- 
flowini; teats, who has brought mc thus speedily to 
drink the sweet wormwood of these lormcnls. By her 

" lusaniaitii dum tabitntia 
Consul tu& erro. 
Also Horace, J;/i»f. 1, xi. z8 : — 

" Strenntt nos exerceC iimt^m." 
And Caiullui, Cttrm. Ixiv, 81-83:— 

" Ipse suuni Thc«eus pro caris corpus Athcnis 
Prnjicere optavil potius, quam lalia Crctam 

I Al*0 Milton, Paradise Rig.riiii.i. iii, 310: — 

"He look'd, and *aw what numlfers niimlttrltsf 
The CTly KStcs outpnur'd.' 

♦Lii ffrlla isihc Florentine conlract ion ofCiiovanna, Uiovnnella. 
Il n a custom at Florence amonK the lower cUkmh to attach the 
dcfiiiilc article to the name* of women— La NclU, L' AtMunta, La 
Carta, La Concctta, La Nina. 

icoUti in this pasufic tncans the lower Blop» nf the moun- 
tain, below and outside of the Gate of Purgatory or the Atiti. 
Purgaloria. The primary meaning of roif4 la a gradual ascent 
^^altlltpoca rtpenU). Thiuoghoul Danlc^tpocm it » used locupress 
" hill-sidc," and somcltmcs Itic hill, or mountain Itself, Compare 
Inj. xii. til, (t2, where Ncssus fiddi c»km the I'ocls on seeing them 
dewendine the precipitiiu* side of the clilf :— 
" A qua) mnrtiro 
Venite vd! che scendctc la coota ? " 
And the Gran DUwiiario quotes from Varchi, Giuoevdi Pillagora, 
a MS, in the Mai;liabecchiana Library at Flniencc, whcic an 
exact definition of (os(a i« Riven : " La via chc va da I'lrcnie a 
S. Minialo, si chiama costa, owero crt* [tluf] ; c la medesima 
via da S. Miniato a I'irenyc ai chiama china, owero accsa.'' 
Prom "sleep a»c«H" the word was used to describe a "etcep 
Mccnl from iIm sea," as in Boccaccio, Dteiim. Citom. ii, JV'or. 4 : 
where one of inc most beautiful regions in the world is thus de- 
scribed : "Crcdcai che la marina da R«eeia a Gaeta flia quasi )a 
piO dileltevvlc parte d' Italia: nella qunlc assai^ri^jitiii Salmto t 
MIM roifii iofrii 1/ nitre rif-uarJiiBUj U ijuaU gli tilMl»itli cAidnU'iii) In 
toita ir Atmdfi." The meaning "coast, Ka-shorc," only comes 
allimately from the above primary signihcutions. 

Canto XXIII. Readings vn the Pur^atorio. 


devout pfmycrs and by her sighs, she has withdrawn 
mc from the hill-nitic where one tarries (i.e. the Anti- 
Purgatorio), and liati net me free from the other circles 
(i.«. the Cornices of Pride, Knvy, ctc.]< 

The better to accentuate the virtues of his excellent 
wife, the only righteous woman in a wicked city, 
Porese now draws an unplcasing picture of tlic dress 
and demeanour of the women of Florence, coin- 
paring that city to the district of Barbagia, in the 
i&land of Sardinia, wlierc the women liad an evil 
reputation, both for their immodest attire, and for 
their licentious morals. 

Tant' i a I>to piu c»ra c pi'ii diletta 

La vcdovclla* mia, che tanto amaj, 

Quanta in bene opcrarc i piii Kolclta ; t 
Chi la Barbasia ] di SardlKita assai 

Nclle fcmminc sue i pi6 pudica ()5 

Che la BarbaK<a <lnv' io la lasciaJ. 

*vakmUa: This is the diminutive of vedova, used (says the 

Gran DitieHiinf) sontcltmes in Ihe sense of compasuon, a& h«re, 

but al olbrr limes as an cxpr«s!>ii>n of crnturc, to denote a widow 

who doei not bear hcncif with iluc detonim in her widowhood, 

|Danic uses it in [he lin>t of Ihcsc two senses in the cpiwdc of 

' Trajan and the widow, furg. x, yit, 7S ;— 

" lo dice di Trainno impcialorc : 

Ed una vcdovella gli era al freno, 
Di lagrimc MltcglpBta c di dalotc" 
iaoieUM : Diminutive of soia, and here i& evidently u&cd with 
a cetlain tenderness to cxpns* the Militude of a (jelnved and 
iiii>deHl woman. Some have tried lu make out that Dante, by 
uyint; that Ntlla wax soUlla in fcr^i^ oftrarf just before attackinj; 
tbe women of I'lorcnce, meant lo east a reproach on his ovfn *ifc 
bOemma. Hut, as Scarla^rini rcmarkit. It is nut at all certain 
Fthat Gemoia was not already dead at the time these lines were 

\Barb»gl« was a mountainous region of Sardinia, and tooli 
its name &om the ancient itarbaricini, celebrated in Ihc hittory 
of Ibc island for their idolatry and independent vrnys. It hen in 
the heart of the principal chain of mouniainti. The Barturkini 



Readings on the Purgatorio. Canto xxill. 

So much the dearer and mnrc prcciouR in the sight of 
God is my poor widow, whom 1 loved so tenderly, in 
proportion an nhc is the tnorc sotitnry in good conduct. 
For the HarhRgia of Siirdiitia is far more modest in 
its women than the Hiubaifia where I left her, 

Forcsc mtans that Florence was a sdtond Barbaf^ia. 
He then telk Dante that lie foresees a day oi retiibulioii 
on thi; Florentine women, when laws will have to be 
made to check the immodesty of their dress. 

O dckc (rate, chc vuoi tu ch' io dies ? 
Temfto fuluro m' i Ki& nel coKpetio, 
Cui non *ari quest' ora molto >iiiti<:ttj* 

Ncl quai Kari in pcrgntno t inteidetlo loo 

lira aaid to hnvc been Iiindcd in SnfttiniB hv the Vandal^ ftnd fonh- 
with they took poNwciMiion of the nciKh^tiurinK mounlainK, ind 
lived by robbery and plunder. St. Gregory (lip. iv. aj) says of 
them: omnts itl tHumala aiiimalut i-u'imt. The Cfidiec C-itsincif 
says that in ihc Barbagia mttlitrts vadunt WHtnude. Pictrn di 
l}iintc makes ihcm wornc; ubi vatfunt nuda muluret. The Cf^ift 
Caelant, quoted by Camciini ; "In insula Sardinia est monlana 
alta. quK dicilur I.ii IJarbuKia : et quaiido Janucns^tt (fA/6m>C4^] 
rctraxerunt diclnm in»iilani dc manibuH Infidclium, nLinquam 

Cotuenint rctraherc diet am monlanam, in qua habitat gen* 
arbara ct t^inc civiliiaic. et fccminic suic vadunt indutx subtili 
pirgnialo. U», <|uod «mnia membra ostcndunt inhoncsic; nam cm 
ibi magnuK cfllor." Bcnvcnulo ciitifirmh Ihis Ktaiemeni : "Nam 
pro calorc el prava cotisucludine vadunl indutx panOo linco a.lbi<, 
cxcollatte itn, ut nstendnnl pectus et libera." It i« naid that, 
even ai the present day, the coMumc ol Iheiie women is somewhat 
scanty ; although their conduct is wiihtiul reproach. 
*i]u/si'ora . . . aMiea: Compare Pitr. xvii. iiS-tw: — 
" E s' io al vcTO son timido amicn, 

Teuto di perdcr vivcr tra eoloio 
Chc qunto tempo chiameranno antico," 
iptrxamo, » pulpit, is not Id be confused, as some Commen- 
tators have done, with ftrgam^na, parrhinenl. Pulpilo i% a deiitc, 
not pulpit. The words in f'tr^amo inUriUttn niav cither mean the 
sermons that were preached agnjnxt the |n»" imiriodesty of the 
womcn:i dress, or better perhaps, the cpiscopnl decrees, and 
canonical penalties which were proclaimed from Ihc pulpit 
■gamut such disKtaceful habilR. tt is evident from verw* '03-5 
that Dante uses initrdttio in the Uflef aenie. Sacchctli {Novelie, 
■ ij, 178) speaks al length on thia aubjcct. 

Canto xxiii. Readings oh ihc Purgatorio. 279 

M\t sEacctate donnc Fiorentine 
L>' andmr moitrando con le pnppc il petto. 
Qufti Baibare* fur mai, quai Saracine.t 
Cui biBognaHsc, per fdHc tr copcrtc, 
O spirilnli o altre diKCiptinc ? { 105 

O dear brother, what wouldst thou have me say? 
A future time is already in my view, to which the 
present hour will aot be very old. when from the 

*Barian: Some trjinsljttc this uinply "barbarian women." 
I prefer to follow Lana't nplanntion : " E dice quasi esclatnando : 

Sjiundd ftvv«nne irai n^ in Barbaria nj in SaracinJa chc ]t (tonne 
CMiKnn >1 tfaccintc ch' ellc crinvcni»ftcm csserc corrcttc da li 
vpintutiti ptcilicatori ? " The OHimo : " Que»to dice in inliimiit e 
vitupcrio dcllc dcttc donnc; Hiccndo chc il prtmo attn c il piO 
popoleaco e volgarc della oncstadc dclla fcmmina, i il lenere 
coperte quelle membra, che la natura richiede che sieno chiusc ; 
e per6 qucllo chc i naturHlc. in ogni luogo i uno mcdcslmo. 
Oiidc dice : le Barbvrc, Ic quuli sono a! partite da' noslri costumt, 
c Ic Saracinc, chc sono coil date alia lussuiia. ... si vanno 
eoperie le Riammelle e'l pelta" 

rSuruftiu: In tbc middle ageii all unbapti^ed penona except 
Jews were frequently called Saracens. 

} diicifitine : G. Villani Jib. ix, c. 241;) relates that in April 1334, 
"arbttri furann falti in Fircniic, i quali (ccLonn ranlti capitoli c 
foni nrdini tontra i diioidinati omamenti dellc donnc di Firenze," 
He further relates (lib. x. c- 11) that in December. 1326, Carlo, 
Duke of Cnlabria. " a pric([o che Ic donnc di I-'ircnzc avcano fatto 
alia duchesAii «ua moglie, si rcndi alle dettc donnc uno loro 
epiaccvolc c diM)ncniii nrnamcnlo di trecce Kronw di Kta Kinlla 
e bianca, le quali portavano in luogo di trecce di capclli dinanzi 
al viMi, lo quale ornamento perch^ spiacea ni Fiorentini, perchi 
era dtaoncito c trasnaturato, avcano lotto alle donne, e fatti 
capitoli contro a cid e altn diaordinali omamenti." ttenvenuto 
. ^MBks of this matter at ^rcat IcnElh, and thinks the Poet haa 
RKWl deservedly uttered his reproach ttgainst these women. No 
arttficcr» in the world poster such varied contrivancen for the 
cxervise of thdr handicraft, ns ihc worncn of Florence for the 
decoration of their pentons. For not content with natural beauty, 
they ever strive 10 add lo it, and arc always arming thcmsclvcH 
against all dcfecU witli incredible art and aajtacity. They aui»t 
shoitncBB of stature wiili a high pattcit {emit pUnula o(lu; ; they 
whiten a daric skin ; they rnu(;c ■ pallid face; they make tlieif 
hair ycliow, and ihcir teeth like ivory; " Mamiltaa breves et duraa : 
ct ut brcvitcr dicain omnia membra artiflciose comiwnunt." 


Headings on the Purgatorio. Canto Mtlll. 

pulpit it ahall be interdicted to the unblushing damc!! 
of Florence tn go nbout displaying the bosom with 
the paps. Whal women of Burbury, what Saracen 
(women) were there ever, for whom either spirilusl 
or other discipline was needed to enforce their going 
about (decently) covered ? 


W Dante now puis into ihe moutli of Foi'ese a prediction 

I of the difiaBlers that actually took place in Florence 

K between i3(Ki and 13 16. 

Ma BC Ic tivcrgognate fo«»er ccrte 

Di quel chc il cid vclocc loro ammannat* 
Crii per urlarc avrian le bocche ttperte. 

Ch£ nc r antivcdcr qui non m' inganno. 
Prima ficn tristc chc Ic gunncc irapeli 
Colui chc mo si coiiticila con nanna.t 


* qiulthtit eUl vfloa loro ammanna ; Diinic ht^fc ulludc* irt the 
form of K prophecy to all the catmniliei that befell Flgrencc 


immcdialely after the entr>- of Charles dc Valois 
1303- (0. \'illani, liK viii, c. 4g): anti in Ihe (»lk 

lois in November, 
lowiiiK year the 
maaaacfcs of which f-'ulcieri da Calboli iviiH lhc]tuthor(G. Villani, 
lib. viii, e. 59). Sec al»t> Canto xiv, ;8-66, and my note thereon. 
In thiK xamc year a great famine took place; in the following 
year the city was cxcomtnunicaicd by Cardinal da Piato (O. 
Viliani, lib. viii, e. fa)}, antl ihe J'lmle alU Catraju fell, iraustng 
the death »f a vaat nmnbcr of person^ r<>n gramit fianto i ilohn a 
IuIIa la (illaJt {c. 70). Villan! says over and over again that 
thcte luigforluncs were sent ana puniiihinenl for the vuckcdness 
flf the cili«nH. Compare thin with Inf. xxvi, 7-tx, where DanlCi 
wishirif; to predict thete uimc factK as evcntt that would shortly 
take place after the year ijoo ^thouKh when he wrote the Inferno 
Ihey were paM oceu(icncc»), pictureM himnclf as hnvmg drrnmt 
Ihcm Itiward)! dawn, when drcnniH were |>opuIarly suppnocd to 
come true. Sec Rfatlinrt on the Inftruo, vol. ii, pp. 328-333. 
The nrimary mcanine of ammannart ia " to bind, or prepare, a 
sheaf of com," and hence umply "to prepare." It i« derived 
from manna a shenf matii^ultn). Cf. I'urg. xxix, 49, ^: — 
" La virtil ch" a ragion diatorso ammanna, 
Siccom' clli eran candclabri apprcse," 
Xnanna: La S'mua Narnta is the t^ons with which nurxes in 
ha]}- send children tn uleep. Compare Michelangelo Buonarotit 
jl Giovane, La fitra, Giorn, tv,act i, x:, vi ; — 

Canto xxni- Readings on tke Purgatoric, 


But if the fthiimelesH crcalurea onlj' knew for certain 
ttuit which nwUx Heaven has in store for them, Ihcy 
would already have thcif momhs wide-open lo howl. 
For, if my fore-sight here docs not deceive mc, they 
will become sad before that he who ix now being 
hushed with lullabies ( the infant) shall hnvc put 
forth beard upon his checks. 

" Note here, reader," says Benvcnulo, " that I have 
heard &ome say rashly, that this prognostication is a 
discredit to Dante (vituperium pi>£ta) since such a long 
time hnd elapsed without those things taking place, 
which he seems to foretell as happening in so brief a 
space of time. To which 1 reply, that the author speaks 
here of things that arc paiit and accomplished facts, and 
not merely of events about to take place. But he ap- 
pears to prophesy, because he looks at the supposed 
time of his vision, which was in mccc, as has already 
been so often said. For f^eat misfortunes did follow 
after that date, such as intestine discords, civil wars, 
and the expulsion of the factions, which things took 
place in the second and third year following : and in 
the fourth year the BiatKhi and Ntri came again to 
arms against each other. And while the fury of war 
was rafjing, .1 fire broke out, whether kindled by accident, 
or, as many have said, the intentional work of a certain 
priest. Neri dcgti Abati, who lirst set it going in his own 
house : and in a short time the greater pari of the city 
was burned, more than two thousand houses being dc- 

" Bd or n' andrcte, dormJKlienc, a naniitt." 
Lana commcma; "He wiahcs here to m«rk the lime that will 
clnpR*: hcfnrr xuch vengeuncc c;in tukf plnce ; and uj-s thut before 
the inalc child thai in Mill in (he cradle, Hnd uho i» liuKhcd to 
sleep wiih the Ninua A'iihtji, shall have put foflh a beard, thi* 
vcnKc^ncc will have come to pass— iV., within the space of lo 

282 Readings on ike Purgalorio. Canto sxiii. 

stroyed, with a damage beyond all estimation. Nor did 
they meanwhile cease from strife, but all the lime great 
pillage went on. And in the fifteenth year (1315) they 
(the Florentines) suffered a terrible slaughter at Monte 
Catini at the hands of Uguccione della Fag^riuola." 

Division IV. — After uttering his denunciation of the 
women of Florence, and predicting the woes thai will 
shortly befall them, Forese entreats Dante to say who 
he is, as the whole band of penitents, of whom Forese 
is the spokesman, are lost In astonishment at seeinj; 
that Dante's body cants a shadow. 

l>ch, fratc, or •fa che piU non mi ti ccli : 
Vc<li che nofi pur io, ma qucMa gcnte 
TultK nmira U dove i1 sal veli."t 

And now, my brother, I pray thee no longer to hide 
thyself Iron) me: we that not only I, but all this 

*or: In I. 58 a srf., Dante had huggesd Foreve la tell him the 
reaHon of the terrible uUcntion of his features. So now Furcsc, 
inso mtny words, sBV'ti to Dante: "Now thm I have given >-ou 
the information you %eek, do you, in ynui turn, tell us wliat we 
arc »■} anxiouti to know, who are you who hnvc a shadow here ? " 
t dow il sol tv/i : Compart Pir/;. lii, 88*93 ■ — 
*' Come color dinan^l vidcr rotta 

I,a luce in Icrra dal mio dcstro canto, 
SI che r umbra era do nicalla Krottfl, 
ReMaro, c (raftier ii in retro alquanto, 
V. lulti gli altri che venicno jippri;»o, 
Non sapcndo il pcrchi, fcnno otlrctianto." 
In Tommaseo's Cwmmentarj', there are the fdlbwinj; <ibHcr>*AtionH 
by the astronomer Antonclli: "Sc auando i Poeti pervcnncro bu 
quculo tcrtn KiTone era riA prcMO le undici ore, adcaso doveva 
C&iicrc paBSiilo il merzod), comv arKnmcntBKi dni principki del 
Canto KcKucntc. li %e prr)«e(;iict>do e»»i ncl Bntito modo tl cam- 
mino, fosscro stati tra la tramontana c il ponentc delta montaf;na, 
come a suo luofo vedremo doversi animelterc. allora la velatura 
del sole, ctod r ombra del nostro Pocta. narebbc caduta vcr«o U 
npa del roonte, nelU direztone che i ira la apalla ainistra o la 

Canto xxui. Readings on the Purgalorio. 


multitude arc iftucing at that spot from which thou art 
screening the Sun." 

Dante reminds Koresc that, during the time of their 
friendship on earth, their lives were not such as to have 
left pleasing recollections. He then answers Forcsc's 
question, telling him how Vlrgit had been sent to his 
aid, and had guided him through Hell, and thus far up 
the Mountain of Purgatory. 

Perch' io a lut : *'Sc ti riduci a incnte* 115 

Qua! fosti mecot e quale io icco fui, 
Ancor fia grave i] mcmorar prcsentc. 

• ridfti a rWHtt : Compare Par. nciii, so- Si '■ 

" a' in^gna 
Indarno di ridurlasj atl menle ;" 
andCtwv. i, 9; II. jtj: "Sc not ridiiciuma a mcmoria qutlln che 
di copra i ragiorato," etc. 

i(^uat/dili riKiii : There t> much rfiffererce of opinion aa to the 
pfEcixc impntl of ihcBC words. Snme take the purely unima^ina- 
livc view, th»t Junnn Forcsc's lifcitme, he and Danic had Kiven 
way to gluttony, and had together taken part in manv luxurious 
feasts. Bui all thai one lias heard of Dante Mrongfy mill tat et 
ajCainst Ih^t ^uppoxltion, as he i« credited with having been sparing 
in hit diet. (On this, see Dr. Mnorc, Dan<t onii Mis tarly Bio- 
grufkin, pp. 1(11-164, "here we learn that both ISD«:caccio and 
I'ilippo \iiUni lesiify to Danic'^ abstemiousness, thouijh he 
admired fcoodcookiniE-) Other*, with much more reason, tnaintain 
that the whole context of these lineti agrees with Dante's account 
ofhitnBcIf [ti/- i, I, ij that al the age of 35 ht was in a stale of 
the pcatest moral peril, and thai, while he wa* Jiurrj'inc down- 
wanlh to his ruin, VifKil met him and turned him buck nito the 
rii^ht path from the wrong one he was pursuini^ {Cht la JiritUi vin 
<ni imjrri/.ij. But Forcnc died, it Is believed, in 1295. live yeara 
before ihc lime of the supposed viition, and therefore Dante would 
have been walkini; in the wronK paihH of the trtva oscwa for five 
years nfter Force's death, before Virgil rescued him in i,)<o. 
Scarta^iini in bHmore recent Milan commcnlaiy says that, in the 
»Ct of vituperative sonnett (see p. afij, fiiotnotc*), it is very easy 
to bee that (he virulence the two l^iend^ were displaying towards 
each other (Unnic spcukinf; in insulting terms of the mother of 
Poresc, and Forev relorlinf; against the father of Dante) was so 
KTcai, that when now they meet, in a dale of penitence and con* 
Irilion, their remembrance of their broken friendship, and iheir 


Readings oh thf- Purgaiorio. Canto JOtlll. 

Di ijnella vita mi vokc costui 

Qie mi vn innanxi, 1' altr' kt,* quando tonciA t 

Vi u moslrb la suom t di colui tso 

(E il sul tnOKtmi). Co»tut per In profondi. 
Nottc mcnnto m' hn &*' vcri inorti,g 
Con qucstu vera carnc {| vhu il sccurtdn.^ 

lodi m' han irallo su U suoi coofoni, 

un-Chrialian conduct towards each othrr, couH hardly fail to 
sUKKot the rnnsi painful rcflcctinns tn them. Thii unseemly 
literary contciil, in wtiich cuch oftliciwo foniicr fricrvdii boukIiI to 
wound th« feelings oi ihc utfacr, must h;ivc ntuincd u ccitain 
amount of publicity at Florence, and would have amounted pretty 
nearly tu a scandal. They now may be suppnsed to be eonfevting 
to each other ihcir mutual Iran^KrcoHOnii, and Danic viou Id ex- 
plain to PnrcM; that he owc« il lu the influence of Virgil that he 
has been turned from his formerly thouf^tlcsi life into the paths 
of penitence ihat are to lead him to Heaven. 

* I' ullr/y ifri is, property spcakinK, "the day before yesterday"; 
but all the CommentaluTs interpret il here, " ihc other day," " a 
few day* ago." /,' ailr' itri puo dire tempo pii remoto chc icr 1' 
altro, il qual si^nibca Dutgiorni indlctro.' (Cram Diiimtario, s. v. 

tlonJa: Compare /«/. xs, 117 : " Egill iernotlc fu la lunatnnda." 
Antnnclli (in Tommas^o'ii Commentary) refcrrine both lo I' tiltrv 
uti and la luna ItinJa n^nke» the follourin)- icniarks: ''Stando al 
avlito suppDKto del pknilumu ccclcHiastico delta I'asqua del tjoo, 
al Purgaiorio b\ rcbbcia vJato la luna tonda nella noltc dat 6 al 7 
aprile, e di preKcnte i%-i correva il di t2 : itunque I' aUn uri ngni- 
ftcft cinque u Ml giorni fi, cioS ini»ura di tempo indctcrminalo; ma 
poco re mo to." 

ttmra : The Sun (Apollo) and the Moon (Diana or Luna) were 
thought to be the children t^f Jupilcr and Latona. Compaic Par. 
Xiix, I :— 

"Quandu ambo e due i ligli di Latona." 
f^vtri mirrii : Compare /»/. i, 115.117:— 

" le di»perdle s-trida 
O't quegli antichi spiriti dolenii, 
Ch« la acconda morle ciaacun ^rida." 
||»VJ^i tanu: Compare /'nry. ii, log, when l>ante, on abkiag 
Caaclla to ainj;, aays to him : — 

" Di cid ti piaccia consolarc alquanto 

L'anima mia, chc con la Hua pcrar>iu 
Venendo (|ui £ affannnta lanto." 
^ tht it ittouJa : Compare /u/. iv, ij: — 

" lo sari primo, c lui uiai lecondth" 


Canto XXIII. Readings on the Purgatorio. 285 

Sftlcndo c rigirando U montngnn 135 

Che Anztn* va\ che il mondn fece tartu 

Whereupon 1 to him : " If thou recall to mind what 
thou wast in my company, find what I was in thine, 
the present remembrance of il will even yel be 
grievous to us. From that life he who goes in front 
of inc turned me but the other day, when the sister 
(the Moon) of him yonder — and I pointed to the Sun 
— showed herself to you ut the full. He hiis led me 
through the profound darkness of the really dead, 
with this re.1l flesh (i,r. my body) which is following 
him. Thence (from Mcll) have his cncoura);cmcnts 
drawn me upwards. aBi:cnding and encircling this 
mountain which straightens (i.e. purities) you whom 
the world made crooked. 

Dante then speaks of (he better hope he has to look 
to, and in conclusion tells Foresc who arc his two 
guides, in answer to his question ;— *' Who arc those 
two spirits that bear thee company ? " (II. 32, 53). 
Tanto dice di farmi sua compa^na,t 
Ch' io sard lA dove lia Beatrice : 
Qtiiv) convi«n chc senta liit riniagna. 

•rfriiM; Compare Purr, jt, i-j :— 

"dentro al soglio della puna 
Che il malo antnr dell' animc dicusa, 
Pcrchi fa parci drilia la via lorta." 
idifiirmi KM mmpagiui : It was of common usage among the 
c»ily vrritcr* to leave out the i of compagnia, as here. Compare 
/a/, xxvi, 100-102:— 

" Ma miti mc per 1' alto marc apcrto 

Sol con un legno e con quctta compagna 
Mcciola," etc 
And Polimno (La GtoUra, lib. i, nt. 29) : 
" Spart;exi tutta In bcHa compagna, 

Altri allc rcti. aliri alia via piii stretta, 
Chi scrba in coppia i can, chi gli ncompagna ; 
Chi giit 'I Ruo ammcitc, chi 'I ricliiama c allctla.'' 
^nd Giov. Villani (lib. xit, cap. ix) : " Quasi taiti i Mildati ch'er- 
ino co' l*iuni . . . c pii^ di ducrnila pcdoni di masnade gh'i- 
cllini, St iwrtironu da Pisa, e feciono una compa«na con alcuno 


Reading)! on (he Purgatorio. Canto XSlllj 

Vlrgiiio i qucati die coai mi ilicc 130 

(E ■<iditfl' lo), c quest' altro S qucU' ombni * 
Per cui acodsc A'ltntl ogni pcndicc 

Lo vosira Kfino che dx %i lo itgorabra." — 

So far he aays he will aftord mc his company, until I 
shall be there (at the summil of the mount) where 
Beatrice will be : there shall I have to be left without 
him. This one here who tells me »o, is Virgil— 
and I pointed to him — And this other (Statius) is 
that Khii(!e for whom your kingdom (Purf^utory) which 
IB discharging him horn it&elf, just now ehook all its 

This refers to the concluding lines of Canto xx. 

piccolo soldo." Scartkziini (Milan EditioiO remarks that one 
mij(ht iho take tompagna an the ietninine of eotnpagno, as afireeing 
with anima, or <imhra undcrMoaif. 

* ijMtS' ombra : Dunlc doc» not name Slatiuo, and Scartatiini 
Mtys it is difficult to see why; but TommHv^D thinks Ih^t the 
name of Staling would not have been of the !ilit;htcst importance in 
the eyes of I'orene. 


Canto XXIV. ReaJings oh the Purgatono. 




Dante continues the description of the penance and 
purgation of ihc Gluttonous, introducing a large number 
of spirits, most of whom had been his contemporaries, 
or had died shortly before his time 

Bcnvenuto divides the Canto into five parts. 
In the First DiviswH, from ver. I to ver, 33, Dantei 
continuing the conversation that was broken off at the 
end of the last Canto, obtains from Forcsc information 
about his virtuous sister Piccarda.and Forcsc then points 
out several spirits, who had been in their life-time 
notorious for Gluttony. 

In the Second Division, from ver, 34 to ver. 6g, Dante 
converses with Bonagiunta Urbiciani of Lucca, nho 
pays a graceful tribute to Dante's eloquence, while 
naming some of the most celebrated early poets who 
were his own contemporaries, and (hen hints that in a 
short time Lucca svill have a special attraction for 


Readings on the Purgatorio. 

In the Third Divisiott, from ver. 70 to ver. 99, Dante 
resumes his conversation with Forese, and hears from 
him a prediction of the tragic end of Carso Donati, 
Forcsc's own brother, and the principal cau^e of the 
evils then cxiating^ at Florence. Forcsc then quits 
Dante and returns to his penance. 

Ih the Fourth Division, from ver. 100 to ver. 129, the 
poets encounter a second tree. A description follows, 
of tl>e checks that are used aKainst Gluttony. 

In the Pijtii Division, from ver. 13a to ver. 154. an 
Angel appears, who purifies Dante from the sin of Glut- 
tony, and points out to him the ascent to the Seventh 


Division I, — Benvenuto says that some people, when 
in conversation out walking, are in the habit of stopping 
their companion cvcrj' time they speak; and other 
persons, from the haste at which they arc walking, 
cithcrshorten their talk or omit partsof it. Such how- 
ever i& not the case with Danle and Forese, whose rapid 
pro)>ress Dante compares to that of a ship in full sail 
Benvenuto drawsattention to the appropriateness of the 
comparison, for the ship of Dante and Forese is holding 
its course towards a good haven of rest, with a sure 
coDtideQce in its two skilful pilots. Virgil and i>tatiua, 
who are walking on before. 

Ni il dir 1' andar, si I' indir tui* pid lento 

*W ii i\T r muTiir, ni F andar tui, d tcq. : It vrtll be noticed 
however, in I. 91. that Fornc diet after all find Dant«'s speed too 
slow, and apologises foe leaving him behind. Danle estimates 
the rate of their progrcu by what i* j^iixn to Man'tt powcra. 'I'hc 
•pirit> not being burdened with quel d" AiUimo (PHrg. ix, 10) can 
naturally move muth more mpidly. It may be rcuiembcrcd that 

Canlo XX[V. Rtadings on the Purgatorio. 289 

facta, ma i^iotianclo sndivam forte, 
K come nave pinta da buon vcnio. 
E r ombre, chc porcm cobc rimonc,* 

Per 1e fosiic degli occh: 'f xmmirazione 5 

Ttacan di mc, di mio vivcrc accortc 

Neither did i;ur speech make our going, nor did oui 
RoiiiK make it (our speech) more slow, but as we 
talked we walked apace, even as a ship impelled by 
a fair wind And the shades, that Hccnicd things 
twice-dead, drew in through their cavernous eyes 
RStonishmenl nt me, perceiving I had life. 

The spirits would know Dante to be alive, both from 

seeing his shadow, and from his unstarvcd appearance. 

The last Canto broke off in the middle of the sentence 

in which Dante was telling Forese who Statius was. 

the fact of Dante bcinK a bad walker was noticed in the note on 
Purg. x\, 43-45, where VJrgll says of him :— 

'■Chi qucsli the vicn mee«, per 1' incarco 
Delia tarnc d' Adamo, and' ci ai vcfltc, 
A1 mnntar su, cnntni Kua vngli;!, i paico." 
Compare Arioato (Of'- Fur. >ix*i, at, J4) : — 

" Non, per andar, di ragionarlaiiciantto, 
Non, di scRuir, per ragionar, lor vin," 
tui rcfcifi toi/ifir, and C»ari ip. 427! rcmarkk that "anchc in coaa 
Inanimata »i adftptra bene il pronome /yd, come dicongli escmpi.' 
I h*vc oltrn noticed thi* use of <ff/i and /wr at l-'lorencc. A 
(-'lurentine fricivd and 1 were much amuacd one day by heating an 
old man selling what wc might tolloquiallj- here describe as 
'■JTadkicl's Almanacki." in the old Market Place at Florence. 
His cry was *' Ecco il Baccelh tunaiio, tglii Im (Hm is Zaikitl't 
Almanttlc, il U ke kimftl/, or it it lb* rtal arluU)," 

* rtnuirtf ■ Thi» Utiima remind* one of that ir Purg. ii, 67-6^ 
where Dante speaks of the band in which was Casclla : — 
" V anime chc si fur di me accorte. 
Per !o spirare, ch" io era ancora vivo, 
MaraviKltando divcnt*ru srnorte." 
Scartaifini aayt that, by rimorte, Dante withes to express some- 
thinj; from which all form or comelinc»>. has utterly %-anislicd; 
the most eilreme pallor and extenuation, even as one whose 
countenance in not only cei^e-Uke, but doubly corpse-like. 

f/nu dtifli orchi .- I have translated the words as though they 
were ftr git oecki uttMvati. 

II. T 

ago Reatlings tm the Purgaiorie. Canto XXIV, 

The whole sentence, when completed, would have run 
thus: "And this other is that shade for whom your 
kingdom, which is discharging him from itself, j ust now 
shook all itfi slopes. He walks on perchance more slowly 
upwards then he would, for the sake of some one else." 
But the Canto broke off before the last clause, which 
Dante proceeds lo utter now, and at the same time asks 
Forese if he can give him any information about Piccsrda, 
who was sister to Forese, and a cousin of Dante's wife 
Gemma. Dante's interview with Piccarda in Heaven 
is described in Par. iii, one of the most beautiful Cantos 
in the Divina Commedia. He also asks Forese if there 
are any personages of distinction doing penance in his 

Ed io, continuando i1 mio scrmonc, 

Di«si : — " Eila sen v« tiu force piii t^dft 
Che non farcbbc, per 1' altrui cagionc" 

Mft dimmi, sc tu 'I »ai, ov' i Piccarda ; t V9i 

Pimmi »' if> vckjcio (t« notar pcraonx 
Tra quests gcnic che b1 mi riguvda." 


* pir r aitrui tagiont : ScartatxJni thinks thit was solely for the 

EiarpoM at talking with VirKtl; but Itenvenuto explains it la be 
or the Kflkc both of Virgil an<l Dnmc, *itding, that otherwise 
Stxtiun would alicudy have BOJtrcd up to Heaven, "and thus 
sec." observes Benvcnuto. "how a real friend will for a while 
postpone his own comfort lor a ft lend. as tays the pliilosapliCT in 
the ixih booh of the Klhics, snil it i* as thoUKh he (Dante) would 
say iReitl>[ : ' I mual haiten avn,y from thee, lest we retard Statius 
who is goinf; lo Heaven, therefore tell me, ] beseech thee, where 
is thy sister ?■■' 

1 PiiciirJa was the ibiiKhier of Simonc de' Donati, and sifter to 
Corso and Forese. She took the vo»ii oftbe order of St. dure, but 
wk» forcibly abducted from the clotntcr ngBinxt her will, by order 
of Mewicr Cono her brother, and married to Kosellino dclla TOM. 
She tclla the talc herself in f'tir. lii, <|7-io8: — 
" ' Pcrfctta vita cd alto mcrto tnciclx 

Donna piQ bu,' mi dissc, 'alia cui norma 
Ne) vosiro mondo ^& si vcstc e vela. 



Canto XXIV. Readings on the Purgatcrio. 


And I, continuing my speech, said: "He (Siiittus) 
walks on upwards mor« slowly perchance, for the sake 
of some one else, than he would (nnturall}-) do. But 
tell mc, if thou knowesi it, where is Piccarda ; tell mc 
whether, among ^11 this people who thus gAzt at me, 
I see anyone to note." 

Forcsc lirst speaks in alTcctionateadmiration of his sister's 
beauty and virtue; and then answers Danlc'& question. 

" La mia sorclEil, chc tra bella c l>uon« * 
Non so qual fosse piu, tnonfa lieta 
Neir alto Olimpo t gii <li »uu corona." — ij 

SI dine prJRia, e poi :— " Qui non si viela 
Di nominaf ciiucun, da ch' i si niunia ( 

Perchi in (i no al morir si ve|^i c dorma 
Con qucllo nposo tti* ogni vote accclta, 
Ctic caritatc ft suo placer confornia. 
Dal mondo, pcmesuirlK. Kiovinetin 
Fuggi' tni, G ncl suo abito mi chiu«i, 
B promtsi la via drIU sua setta. 
Uomini poi, a mal piii ch' a bene uoi, 

Fuor mi rapiron dclla Joke chioiira; 
E Dio si sa qiial poi min vita fusi.' " 
*tra biila i bkona : f'eirarch (Part il, S4nuia Ixai) *Ay» of 
Laura: — 

" chi Ira bella e oneata, 
QubI fu piii, Inncifi In dubblo." 
t Ntir uttn Olimpo : ScarUz/ini remarks that, uccordinK to 
Dante, the heathen poet « had a presentiment or the truth, and 
their fancies ate not mere fictions. T'iccaicia wan in the lovrcst 
sphere of Heaven, as she tays her>cl( (Par. iii, 49-51) : — 
"Ma riconoscciai ch ioson Pkcarda, 
Chc pMta qui eon questi allri beati. 
Beats Kono in li spera pi& tarda." 
Dcnvcnuto nociccx that Dante places the Kintcr in Paradis«, (he 
one brother, Porese, in Purgalorv, and Corso, the other brother, 
in Hell. 

Ill mitnta Noslra umbiaHta via: Although iHHii;«r< ha« the 
priinaiy meaning of "to milk," it has teveral other*, amone 
which, "to deprive anylhing of what il has posseaaed," and 
fuithcT "lo (ti»fi(;ure'"; and, bc4iilc> these *>);nilicalions, I find 
in the Gran Diticnario, t, v. muHto " smtmlo " l\cin, meagre) and 
" nMcru." Therefore muagtnna ii literally, "lomilk away,niilk 

T 2 


Readings on tiu Purgatorw. Canto xxivl 

Nostra ncmbianxa via per la dicta. * 

"My sister, who betwixt beautiful and good I Itri' 
not which was most, already rejoices triumphant 
her crown on lofty Olympus (i.e. in HcBvcn)." 
said he first, and then : " Here it is not furbidden to' 
nnmc every one, ainte out counteniinceK are so ems- 
cittted {lit. milked diy) by our abstinence. 

Forese means that, as the whole of the spirits present 
are equally miserable in appearance, there can be 
nothing invidious in naming any one specially, and 
the more so. that otherwise, any recognition by a 
strant^er would be impossible. Dante had named 
Piccarda, and Forese had in his answer said " my 
sister"; now lest Dante should think that he wished 
to reprove him, he hastens to reassure him, and namea 
several of his fellow penitents, and as these included 
a poet, a pope, a great noble, an archbishop, and a 
reigning prince, we may take it for giantcd that the 
selection would satisfy even Oante, who rarely, i: 
ever, notices any chk of the middle or lower classe&f 


* ta Jtelt\ : " II mangiar puuo c cok Icjy^cre, o aruie nulla.' 
(Gran Dizionario.) tScctiiiiMi, Prtn^trbi Toitaiti, Pirenic, iHsA, p. 

" Aequo, dicta, c «crvi/ialB 
Guari»cc d' ogni male." 
The /Jtiwmirw <]uoics the lollowmt; from the Sonnetft of 
Bernardo Belli ncioni, Milan, 1493, 410 {Sott. 234) to show that 
dieia may mean depHvaiion of what anythtnj; ought to have, or 
that it is empty:— 

" Ma perchl U bona mia fa dicta." 
i In In/, m, toyivi, Dante expresses this opinion to Virgil inl 
precise terms :— 

" 3Ja dimmi dellaKcnIe che procede, 

Se lu ne vcdi alcun def^no di nnta ; 
Ch^ solo a ct6 la nnia mente HRcde." 
In that same Canin Dante aflcpwards names one Asdcntc, a 
cobbler, but Harloli thinks thai Hante onlv mcniiontt Asitcntc 
for the sake of grouping bim and an asuolofer of the hi^hMt 
order together as two di\inerB, and thereby briti|;inK the pre- 

Canto XJav. Readings on Ihr PurgaUmc 293 

Qucxit {c mofiU^ col dito) i Bonai;iunU, * 

BoiugiuDta da Lucca ; c quclla bccia t ao 

tctilious ai(rolo(;cr Into ridicule. In Far. xvii, ijj-ifx, this 
contempt for ordinary personages is aironKly inculcated upon 
him l)> hiK ancctinr CaixiaEuida. who bidK (>iintc ignore Ihcm 
alioecthcr, and only write about illunrioua penenages, whether 
gona or bad :— 

" QucHto tuo grido farA come venlo, 

Che le pill alte cimc pi£i percotc; 

E z\b non fa d' onor poco areomento. 
Per6 ti son motttrate in quesie rote, 

Ncl montc, e nclb vnlla dolorosa. 

Pur I' animc ch« son ili famu note ; 
Chi r animo di auci ch' ode non po»a, 

Ni fcrmafcdepcr encniploch' haia 

Lb iub radicc tnco^nila c niacoiu. 
Nfc per dtro argomento the non paia." 
* BoiutgiHiUa wns Ihc »on of Kiccnmn di Itonagiunta Or- 
biccsani dcglt Overatdi of Lucca. According to Scaita^jini he 
died shortly after the year 139(1. in the [leccinbcr of which year 
he waa alive. Lana says he wss n reciter of rhymes, and very 
corrupt in the vice of Ututtonv. Nanniicci {Manualt Mia 
Leilerulurti dtt Prima Stcolodilla Lingua lUtlinntt, vol. i, p. lyf) ln-gw 
his rcudcrs to outc thai ilunaputt^'n reputed friendship with 
Uante.and their in CcrchanKc of sonnets, it well worthy of credence 
when assened by Jacope della Lana, who was already a writer of 
Korne celebrity nl the time of Oantc'H dcnlh, and might quite 
well hav-c been acquainted wilb them both. Uciivcnuto rcmurks: 
")mt maiimuituaguter fptlositaluni," . . . and further on : "he was 
an honourable man, of the city of Lucca, a splendid orator in his 
mother loHKue, with much facility in the matter of rhymcn, but of 
greatct facility in that of wines." Duntc howevcf held Bonagiunla 
in low esteem as a pod, and in lie Vtilg,. Elo^. i, xiii, ineiudci him 
amnnt; certain other Tuscan wriiem nf the time whose lan^uaKC 
wji hy no mciinx pure, bcinf; Ihc ineie local rliak-ct nl their set ciul 
nstive cities. See also the article bv Carlo Xlinutoli, G/nlufta 
e gii aliri Ltuchni uomiKali ntlLt hieina Commtdia (in Daiitt t il 
tini Steole, Florence, iliOj), in which Etonagiunta i* mentioned at 
pp. aji, 2t4- 

iifuiUa fatda: The idea of the intensity of the emaciation ia 
imprcascd an us by Dante saying " that face beyond him " instead 
of "that spirit beyond him." He vifthcs his readers to under- 
atand, that the sight of those cavernous eyes and hollow cheeks 
ao neured upon the attention of the beholder, Ihut for the time he 
would be unable to see anything but the facca. The spirit in 
quettion i* that of Pop« Maiiin IV, a i-'reochman. by name Simon 


Readings m tht Purgatorio. Canto xxiv. 

Di lit da iui, piii chc I' altrc trapuntn, * 
Ebbe li .lanta Chienn in 1e xue braccin : 
Dkl Torsot fu, e purKa per di^iuno 
L' ansuille di UuUena ] e la verniu;cia.''§ — 

This one h«re — and he pointed with his ftneer — is 
Bonagiunta. ItonagiuntK of Lucca; and beyond him 
(he with) that tan mote emaciated than the others, 
once held the Holy Church in his embntce: from 

de Brion of Tours, who succveded Nicholsis III in isfti. O, 
ViiUni (lib. vii, ch. j8) xays of him : " Di vile nazione, ma molto 
fu (nagnanima c Hi gran ciiorc ne' fatti dclla ChicMi, ma per >i 
profrtD per *uoi parcnti nulla cuvidi);ia ebbc : c (jMando il fratcllo 
il venne a vcd«rc pspa* incimtiincntc il Tinnindt) in l-rancia con 
piccoli doni e colje spese, dicendo, ch' e' beni erano dclla China 
c nan »uoi." lie wak r itrong partisan of Charlci of Anjou, 
and an cocrnj- of the GhibL-1 lined. He retired In Oivielo, where 
the rich winev ol tjrvieto and Montcliatcone, combined with the 
ccIb here mentioned, may haxe given him the surfeit from which 
he It mid la ha\-c died. The FotlilUlon Cauinenu Mates that, 
owing lo hi» t^rcdilcction for eels, the following verses ate wjd 
to have been written on his tomb : — 

"GaudL-nlDnguillac, quiii morluushic jacct ilk 
Qui quaai inone rcas cxeonabgit cas." 

* tnifnintti, for Irapuntala, hi. " worked in embroidery," but here 
"extenuated." " Le inueuaglinnie dell' arida pelle rendono im~, 
maginc di Irapuntn. (Tommasio.) 

t r<frii> : The city of Tours. 

I Bofstna Lake Boluna is near Vitcrbo, and said to abound 
in fish. It is in a moil fertile divtricl, but has an cviJ rcputsiion 
for malaria, 

^verttaefia : A species i>f white wiiie, both rich and twcct. 
It was said to ha^'C been produced from a thick skinned i;nipc 
that imparted a sweet rouifh flavour to the wine, which Bcnvcnuto 
cays tii cycelli-nt, and en mea fro in the mnuntaini; neat (tcnou. He 
adds that he considers it to hnvc been of speciul olilily to titat 
Hioh I'ricst inicaninR Martin IV) to have drunk of the wine tn 
which eels had been slain ; for whoever drinks of wine so prepared 
titiaiKhlwny take* a dis^uM to «ll wine, an Alheriui Magnus says. 
Henvenuln himself saw the experiment succeed with a great 
bishnp. Chaucer mentions the wine in the Merchant's Tale : — ■ 
" He drinkclh ipocras, clarrce, and vcrnage 
01 spycea hotc, t' cncrcscn hm coiaKe." 
Compare also Pulci (Uorg. Magg. Canto ixv, »t, zig); Boccaccii 
(Dfcam. Giorn. x, Nov. ii); and Kedi {Bacto in Tottana, I 


Canto XXIV. Reading on ifu Purf^alorio. 


Toum wM h« (Pope Martin IV), and by abstinence 
he is expiating the eels of Bolscnu and the Veinaccta 

Dante here mentions the quiet satisfaction of which 
the spirits give evidence, as they arc named in turn, 
and Scartazzini thinks the context shows that, as they 
are not seeking; for renown in the world, they are not 
unduly elated. They only desire from the world the 
prayers of the living. 

Moltl altri mi nom^ a.<t uno »d uno; S5 

H ilcl numur parcan tultjcantenti, 
SI ch' io pcrd non vidi un attn bruno. 

Many others did he name to nic one by one; and 
all seemed pleased at hearini; themselves named, so 
that I did not for this [perb] sec one sombre gesture. 

The two next mentioned arc a Florentine noble and an 
Archbishop of Ravenna. 

Vidi per fame a vAto unur li d«nti * 
Ubaldin daiU Piln.t e [3DnJr>;cioJ 
Che pniturd cot rocea molte genti. 30 

*NMr U Jenti: The phrase is taid to be derived firom Ovid 
(,Uttam. viii, S'24-827):— 

" Petit ille dapei sub imagine «otnni ; — 
Oraquc vana rnuvct. dcntcmquc in denic (ali|'at ; 
l^xcrcctquc cibo dclusum ^tittur iriAni: 
Proquc epulis icnuG» ncquicquain dcvorat auras." 
t (Jbaldin ttalta Pila ; llcnvcnuto sayK he was a knif^ht of the 
illuiiiriauB family of the Lbaldini. which gave t>irth to many other 
valisnt men: he was hbcral Bnd cultivated, and was brother of 
the Cardinal Ottaviano the Mngnificcnt, who once conducted the 
Pupc. wilh hi* whole courit 10 enjay his hrothcr'a ho&pitality at 
his cattle on the mountains near Florence, and the Ccpc continued 
his ciMst for several mAnthc. Dante h as placed the Cardinal iri 
Hell among the I-'picurcans. h is he whom Farinata l)ct;!i Uberti 
tnenlioni as a fellow (uflercr in hiH ficrj- tomb (/«/. x, i iS-iio) ; — 
"Diascmi : 'Qui con piii di millc i;UGcio : 
Qua dentro ^ lu Kecondo Federico, 
Ed Cardinale.'" 
XBoniJazut: Thin wua the Archbishop of Ravenna, of the 
ctoble family of the Ficachi, Counts of Uavagnn, in the Genoeia 

Readifigit ou the Purgatorio. 

I saw through hunger ueitifi their teeth on emptines* 
UhnldinocliilU Pilii, nnd Honifjcc who with liiscroxicr 
pastured vast herds (of courtiers and retainers). 

Benvcnuto's explaiiatton is that Uante describes Honi- 
face by one of the chief insignia of his great dignity. 
The Archbishop of Ravenna is a f^eat shepherd, who 
has under him many auffiagan bishops from Rimini as 
far as Parma : and he says col rocco, for while the other 
shepherds (bishops) have the crooked pastoral staff he 
(the archbishup) has tha whole staR* straight and round 
at the top like a castle at chess {ad modum caUiili sive 

territory ; he was nephew of Pope Innocent IV. He was ap- 
))(iitile(l ArcIibiKhnj) by GrCKory \ at the time of the Council tif 
Lyons in ia74. Honnriuii IV Hcnl him a» Nuniio to the Court of 
Pnilippe te Httrdi, and nfierwards to Philippe li Bel. On p. izo 
of n very bcnuliful work, /,' Cf/imo Ki/ugiodi fhinte, Milan^ 1891, 
Corrado Kicci rccoida that Donifncc held llic Archbishopric for 
ftdly JO ycar^I 1274-111)4). That he was farinorc of a political agi- 
tator than a i;«nt1e pastor of soub is shown bv the auisiance he 
lent to the Fcrrarcsc exilcK ogainut Obi^jro d' P.%te, but no one ex- ^m 
cept Danlc rccorda his gluttony. His wealth inuht Iirvc been cnof- ^M 
inoui(,«nd his ptirchaiicn iif cunt ks and poKMCHionN, which he after- ^ 
wards bestowed or sold to the clcig>' of Kavmna, were well-known. 
Corredo I^icci further explain* the daublemeanint; of the word ^>u- 
turi, as tunbiguuuflly implying; [htti Itnnifacc used his pattoral ttaff, 
or inotherwordtthiBepiBCupa] uraixhi-cpiiicopal ufTivc, to maintain 
a great host of nttcndAnts whom he enriched by his UrgcHC&. 
"Quando Danle sctive Che pmlHrd col rocm molU finti, dnbbtamo 
inter)irctare chc ca\ paHtorale, ouia nclla sua pooi/ionc d' atcivcs- 
covo o (li patlofc mi»tii;o mantennc inlorno a ai muhc Kcnli e 
viue tautamcntc c ben (tivcrtafncnle dat primi martiri c ben 
lontano da quclla psreimonta c i>t&la scmplicc cd auslcro impiitxo 
H£li uomini che prcdiciino seiiipre il Micrificio. Allora da quel 
veno emerge tutto un fine sarcastnoche aumcnta il valore. 11 
verba katiurart prescnta in qttcsto caio dac ta};li \a doithlt algf] 
c con I ambiguitJi detcrmina cpigramma fra il f^Uutart il jjre^Ke 
cristiano con la parola cvangclica e la ptcl&, c il (■asltirart o h 
ifamarct/fJHArMJi/i (</]il Krcegc dci cortigiani chc cit si addcn- H 
savano intorno." Pietro di Dante write*: "Item 3e Arctii«pi. ^ 
scope Bonifatio Kavcnnalc . . . qui cum rocco, idral cum 
digniUlc dicti ArchicpiacQpaiua, «upcr cujua pantorali in »um(nitatc 
csi forma uniun locchi, saepc conviTatua cH" 



Canto XXIV. Readings on tUc Purgatorw. 


rocchi). This word has been the cause of much dis- 
agreement. Snme have tried to make nut (hat rocio 
means a bclfrj-. others a rochet, but Scartazzini asks: 
" How can an Archbishop rule with a part of his 
IfCss ? " Scart.ix^ini adds : " It is derived, like r^que in 
ipanish and PurlugucKc, and rac, Provencal and French 
(and nwft, English), from the Persian ro*A, and means 
neither more nor less than the castle in the game of 
ches^t. Now the ancient Commentators have told us, 
that the crozier ofthe Archbishop of Ravenna has on 
the top a piece shaped like a casllc at chess. Cnl rocto 
therefore signifies 'with his crozier,' and all the other 
intci-pretations are but dreams." 

The above is of course the right interpretation of 
rofCfl, and I have only used the term "pastoral staff" 
in the footnote by way of giving more effect to the play- 
on the words which Corrado Kicci accentuates. 

Dante passe* from Ravenna to Forli, \ihcre, says 
Benvcnuto, there are stouter drinkers and better wines! 

Vidi mc«Mr Marchcae,* ch' ebbe spiuio 
Gil di berc a Forli con men aecchc^jtk, 
E &i t (u tul che non si Html t,itua. 

*metifr MureSftt : Cnniincfltntors neem to differ as (o whttUer 
ittarcbtw wax ih* iiamc tn the lillc of thi» pcr«ona);c. 1 in-line 
to the Ultvr view, an I'ictro di Dsimc wrilCBi " Itvin d< l>oiiiina 
MHrchrHiudc Kr^ocliosis dc Forli\i".* Benvcnuto"* actounl of 
him mates that he was <>r the family of the Ari;ueliofti of Forli, tt 
^attr Jmnina Ltut<r, qua fail malef domini Htmardini d< Poitnta, 

Snifait dominis RiivtHttatitm. He in imid on« day to have asked 
is KC[ctar>- wh^t vras talked of bim in the city. The sccrctur)' 
answered tremblini; : " My Lord, over ihc wliotc territory nothing 
else \% Mid of you, than thai y<iu do nnihinjc but drink ; "to uhich 
the MarchcKc replied Iiiu^hing : " And why do they not alM> Mty 
ihui it is because I am ulwajn thir»ty ? " 
♦ ii i* here c<iuivalcnl to tu>n4imttio, " ncvcrtliclcu." 

Benvcnuto here inveighs with great severity against 
the vice of drunkenness. Hesa>'s that the human race 
are the only animals who drink for drinking's sake, 
when they are not alhirst ; that the drunkenness never 
ceases in any part of the world, and what is worKe, men 
devise incitements to thirst for drinking's sake ; with 
the deplorable results that all Man's nobler qualities 
become vitiated. 

Division II. — Dante relates how he felt a strong in- 
clination to converse with Bonagiunta, whom Forese 
had puintcd out to him (11. 19. ^o). (Ic notices that 
not only is Bona^unta paying particular attention to 
him, but he overhears him muttering the word Gen~ 
tucca, and Bunagiunta, upon being appealed to by 
Dante for an explanation of this mysterious utterance, 
predicts to Dante that, before a long time shall have 
elapsed, he will have reason to feel some intere<tt in 

Dante first compares himself to one who, on enter- , 
ing into an assembly, looks about him, and then select; 
what person to approach first. 

M» c»me b chi guttrdik, e poi h' apprcica* 

Pib 6' un che d' altro, fe' io t quel da Lucca, 

* t foi i' ti^^resta : This ia the rending adopted by Or. Uttore 
in his new Oxford tcit. It is no read in Ihc Polieno, in thc^c«i, 
»iitl in the Naples cditiona, «s well as in the CvJUt Cinunae. 
Witlc read* ri iTfE:!!— ScarUuini read* * pd fa frezta, the 
Kkding in the Aldjne, the La Cruwa. and other le««. The 
Vatican MS. and the Mantua edition read e moh t' appmta. 
I'rtisa is merely another (onn of frttto — esteem, appreeialion,^ 

Canto XXIV. Readings on ihe Ptirgatorio. 299 

Che pii) pares di me voler contc?£SL.* 
Ei mormorava, c non ao che " Gcntiicca " ^ 

Sentiva io lit ov' ei sentia la piaga 
ndln giimti/in chc si 11 pilucca.t 

But as he docs, who looks about him, and then takes 
more count of one than of others, so did I to that 
(spirit) froiti Luccit, who seemed mast to dc»ire 
ac(|uaintance with me. He was miutering, and I 
know not what (inethouijht) I heard "deniucca" 
from there where he was feeling the chastisement of 
the justice that so consumes them. 

The word of course issued from his throat and mouth, 
where he was most feeling the pangs of hunger and 
thirst. Although Benvenuto interprets W eve as above, 
he thinks it might also refer to the vicinity of the tree 
and the sight of its fruit. 

There has been a great deal of controversy about 
this word Genfncca, but the interpretation to be pre- 
ferred is that which makes it to be a proper name, 
which is adopted by the large majority of the Com- 

*v^fr tontnta: Witle statn that this reading is foand In 
i the margin or the La Crocu MS. in the Laurcniian Library at 
Florence, and Dr. Muore a<lopl« il. Wittc himself and Scar- 
tfljzini read f^oria di ttu avir rnntfiia. which rcadinK occiitk in 
the Caliu C^isiiUit, and in the lar^c majority of USS. Danicllo 
readn iitvrf and fancies that Rnnagiunta v«»utd, more than the 
Mher Mpirita, have acquaintance with I>antv. Compare t^rg, xx, 

" Quette parole m' eran ri iiiaciulc 

Ch' to mi itaiui oltre per aver contexxa 
III quctio spirto." 
ifiiaeca : fihaart ia akin to the German ffiStktn, to pall 
iirapcx off a bunch one by one, whence it means to consume by 
slow degicea. Compare Poriigoefri, il RiecitirJetU, Canto xiii, 

" II core c il capo avca del tulto vuoto 
Di quel visin che 1' aima mi pilueca." 


Readings on ike Purgatorio. Canto XXIV. 

Butt says : " Oantc farmed an attachment to a gentle 
lady called Madonna Genlucca. of Rossimpelo, on ac- 
count of her great virtue and modesty, and not from 
any other love." Fraticclli says it was *' A lady of 
Lucca with whom [)antc is supposed to have fallen 
in love, when in 1314 he went to stay with his friend 
Ugucdone della Faggiuola." Benvenuto and the 
Ottimo interpret the passage differently, the former 
making gentu^ca a common noun, and meaning gins 
ohicara, low people. The Ottimo understands Bona- 
giunta to have muttered, " non so che Gentucca (or 
gentuccia)" including "non so che" as part of his 
speech, and the Oltlmo sees therein an allusion to the 
Bianchi, and " Femmina e nata, cio6 la Parte Bianca." 

Scarlft;;2ini evplains it categorically. Uanie heard 
Itonagiunta mutter something, and the only word he 
caught was Centwca. He thereupon begs him to 
speak clearly so that he can understand him. Bona- 
giunta does so, telling him that a certam lady is 
already bom who will make him find Lucca pleasant, 
though he had before uttered great abuse against it. 
The inference then is, that Bonagiunta's statement 
about the woman of Lucca is to explain what he had 
muttered, when Dante had only heard Gentucca. If 
so, Gentucca is the name of the woman. Some Com- 
memators contend, however, that it never was a 
woman's name. But Troj-a (Viltro di DanU, p. 142) 
tells us thni, at that lime, there really was living at 
Lucca a lady called Gentucca, wife of Ucmandu Mm la 
degli AntclmincUi Allucinghi. Carlo Minutoli {Dante 
e it SHC sKoto* p. 32S) 8a>'s that it is proved by in- 

* So student of this Canto Nhnulit omit to read the article in 
qucBiion [CeHlueca t ^ii »ltri Luci)wii uontiu,ili wUa Diiimi Com- 

Canto XXIV. Readings mi llu Purgalorio. 


contestable documtnts that, at the same time, there 
Vfas living in Lucca another lady of gentle blood also 
called GenttKCa, much younger than the other one, 
to whom ahe was related. This last Gcntucca was 
the wife of Duonacconto di I.»zzaro di Fondora, sur- 
named after the fashion of those times Coacin or Co- 
sciorino. Scartazzini then says ; " Let it be sufficient 
for us to establish the following points: i. Gentucta 
for getiiwcia, gentt bassa, is not to be found in the works 
of any writer. 2. It is proved by documents that, in 
the time of Dante, there were living in Lucca two 
women, not of low birth, of the name of QcnlKcca. 
3, If Gealucca was a proper name amonfi; the people 
of Lucca, then the assertion of some Commentators, 
that the Lticchesi used the word getttucca to mean 
gcHte baaa, is most improbable. And therefore wc may 
conclude that Gf»tt*c(a is the name of a woman, who 
gained the affection of Dante when he was at Lucca 
in 1314." Scartazzini lays great stress on having 
purposely said affecUon and not love, for he is convinced 
that Dante's love for Gcntucca was in no sense sinful, 
but a love that was platonic, pure, holy, and removed 
from even a thought that was not chaste and modest. 

Dante now accosts Donagiunia, and a conversation 
ensues between them, in which some have thought 

mtrdia)iT\ Dante r U tuo Saolo, pp. ZO3-131. At (he end of his 

irlicle Ihf writer »ay» : " Ad ogni modo in l.ucca ebbe ttquit Im 

l«itB IiBVBcliata delV caule. Lucca fru Ic bcllc donne ncordalc 

Ida Giov- Villani conlcmnoroneo, n' cbb« una dc^na xopra Ic allic 

Id' attirarc li sjiuardi di Danlc. L* quale con la picii chc i anin 

Idel cuordella donnji quietd la tcmpcma di quell' aniina l>rrfcai;liata 

rdacrudelll di fortuna, travolta nrllr cicchc iic di parte. E fu 

tRpiralrice dc' mirabili vcrsi, ondc il cantor i)c' trc rci;ni re«c 

ctcrno nei poateri il nome dclin lucchcse Ocntucca." [The 

paoMfTc rcfcTTcd to ui in Villnni. lib. ix, cap. jo6, where apcciaJ 

mention it made of U belle dvniu di Lnua.] 


Readings on the Purgahrio. Canto XXtv. 

that Bonagiunta wltjhed to administer a xide thrust at 
Dante, who had asserted that every man in Lucca 
was a fraudulent trafficker in public office,* but 
Scarta2zini says that in the year 1300, in which Dante 
pretends that his interview with Bonagiunta took place, 
he could not have put into the mouth of the latter words 
referring to the Iwenty-lirst Canto of the Infcnm, for no 
one believes that that Canto had then been written. 
Buti thinks it is simply a censure spoken generally of the 
evil habits and words of the Lucchesi. 

Dante leaves one to suppo^ic that Bnnagiunta desired 
to speak with him to defend Lucca, his native place, from 
the bad repute in which Dante held it. Dante now says 
to him in so many words: "It may content thee to 
mutter through thy teeth, but I pray thee to content nte 
also by speaking distinctly." 

-" anima," di«s' ia, " — che par si vitga t 

Di parlar mcco, fa si eh' io t' intenda, 
E ic c mc col tuo parlarc appa^."— 

-"Pemmina £ nata, c non porta ancor bcnda," — } 
Comiiici6ei, — "clie ti ftiri piaccrc 
La inia ciciJi, come cW uom U riprenda.g 



*Sce ti^.KUt^i-~ 

" Ecco nn dcgli amiim cli Santa Zita : 
Mcttetel Mtto, ch' io lomo per anchc 
A quelU terra ch' i' n' hab«n fornitB: 

Ognun v' h barmtier, fuor die Bonturo : 
Del no, per li denar, vi si in ita," 
tfj vflM Di parlar mtm : Compare Par. lii, 34, 35 ;— 
"Ed io air ombra. che parea pii^ vn^a 

Di raf;i»niir, dricxa' mi, e cominciai." 
I Hou porta attcorbttutit; 'XhtOran OuKWiirv), cuplainingthis verr 
panKUgc, saya: "Pa quanto dicono gli apohitnn, a\ tempo ricl- 
r maritatccic vcdovc porlavano it capo bcndaio, non 
co«) te icinvani da marito-" 

^ri^tftda : On thin tiuli comments: "QiicMa dice: !n)p«(ft che 
li Lacchetti hono npreai [ctfiiared) di loro costumi c del loro 

Canto XXIV. R^aiiings m the Pnrgatorio. 303 

Tu tc n" andrai con qucsto antiwcdcrc ; 

Sc nel tnio mormorar prcndcisii crrorc, 
Dichiarcrami oncor* lecoBcverc 

"O Spirit. ■" said I, "that scemcst so eager to talk 
with me, do so that I can hear thee, and by thy speech 
make each of us conteni," " A woman ta born, and 
wt*t^ not yet the wimple {i.e. is unwedded)." he began, 
"who shall make my city please thee, however much 
men may blame it. Thou shall go thy way with this 
presage (from mc) — if by my muttcritiR thou wast led 
into error, the certain facts will at some future day 
make it clear to thcc — 

Benvenuto notices that Bonagiunta having Brst men- 
tioned Dante's future love, now speaks to him of his 
lormcr love, for he knew that Dante had been wonder- 
fully in love (mirabilUcr inamoratus), and had composed 
noble love songs. 

He asks Dante if the person he sees before liim is 
really tliat Dante Alighieri who introduced a new style 
of poesy. In reply Dante lays down this fundamental 
principle of poetry, which requires that the style should 
be the close correspondence of the word to the thought. 
Bonagiunta admits that neither he himself, nor certain 
others of the early poets, had in the least understood or 
(o)lowcd this principle, and laments the fact 

parUre," and Buti goes on to ridicule them for having «arn«d the 
nickname in 'l'uM:any of Boiuioii, from their n>is(>ronunciaticin of 
C«t1«in words, of which their contraction oi bu/inaiuCo into baiato i% 
a ipccinicn, from which the M'hriquet wu derived. Buli, howncr, 
WM a Fi»n, and between Pisa and Lucca thtrc was great anti- 
pathy. The pronunciation and Tuican idiom in the [.ucchcxe 
ditlnct and mountain region at the present day arc among (he 
choicest in Italy. 

* aiKor : The adverb uncora has somctiiiKs, as here, the mean- 
inn; "'" •''< future." See Grari nitiommo, $. V, antora, ii. Com- 
pare HocraccJO, Ouam. Giom. x, Nov. is: "11 Saladino . . . gli 
rispovc dkcndo: mesacrc, crIi palr& ancora awcnirc cfac noi vi 
farcm vcdcrc di no»Ira mercatanxia." 


Readings on the Purgalorio. Canto xxiv. 

Ma di*6*io veggie qui coini che ftiorc* 
Tr&KSc le tioovc rimc,+ cntninciando: 
Donne, ch'aveit inUUtUo \d' A nwr/,"'— 

Ed io a lui : — " lo mi son un § clic, qu*ndD 


*/iiw« .■ It ift nccesiAry to give the full force of this word, which 
tRiplJe* that the Ctuc poet draws his inspiration fram his innermost 
heart. I fftllow Longfellow in translating " c\t>kc<(." Somchow- 
cvcr interpret it " irawt; fuute in pubblicii." 

f It nuovt rimi : Duntc wns the first In write ftonnHtt in which, 
instead of the conventional luvc uf which other poets had tung, 
he elevated love a« one of the most noble, pure, and lofty feelings 
of the soul. With niiove rime I'liiTiiiaic Horace, Carm. Ill, i, z-4 : 
"Carmina nnn prJus 
Audita Mutarum »cerdoa 

Virginibutpucrioque canto." 
\inUlUtto tt' Amort: The line quoted here i» the first verse 
of a Canronc in the I'l'tti Nuava, f xix, Canz. i. Dante evidently 
considered this to be one of bis best Cun^ioni, for he not only 

; notes it here, but again in his Di Vvlg. fJoif. lib. ii, cap. 11. 
'rof, A. D'Ancona, in his edition of ihe Vila Suova (Pina, 1884), 
fi. tj-^, gives a good cxplanntinn of this difficult line: "Che 
ntcndctc chc cntta ( Amorc, Bdopcrando U paiola inttiUtto nel 
modo specials nlla Ungua nntica ; U, come oggi piQ rialerial- 
mciitc dircbbcsi. che avcic unto A' amore." Prof. D'Ancoita 
mcntlnns the intcrc.iling (set that the grcAt poet Oiniui CardiKCi 
[whoac recent death the whole civili/c<l world join* Italy ia 
clcplorini:], found this Canionc fJoniic, rh' mxtt ink lltUvil' Amort 
incomplelcly tfansuribcd in a mcmnrandum book of Ihe Notary 
Piclro .\lleKran/a of Bologna, of the year 129^, and wrote aa 
follows; "La trar-ciisionc del notaio bolc^neu: non ofTrc tali 
particoUriti <li Iczionc d« ctnere paste a contronlo cc^li altri tcctii 
ma . . . tetto pince di averc una prova the In Canzone di Dante 
fMse cnsi prewtn e bene conosciuta tn Hulot^no, di dnve venne 
bI pacta finrcniino I' ckcmpin di ccrii lirici ardinienti : di qucllo, 
per esempio, ilella iieconda slania, ove Dio c tutto Tempirco, mono 
iticasi in mos'imento e in rappretcntania qtiaai drammalica a 
ntagKinre onorc detla donna e dell' amor suo ; come prima il 
Guinicelli »vca fatto, quando delta puritil e necessity dell' amore 
kI appellava. nell' ultima stanza della cclebre Cantone Al eor 
/;tiilil, con unci dci movimenti pib liricj di tutia la pocaia ilAliana, 
al giudij:io di Dio dopo la mortc." (Catducci, InUrn^ ud aUnm 
rinKidi XT. xitt. 1 miv, etc., Iinola, Galeuli, 167^^ p. iS). 

§ !o mi ton Mil, el 6cq. : Cesari {BtlUist, vol. li, p. 433) explain* 
thii well: "Aniore j la scintilla, c 'I solo maestro liclU poc»ia. 
Ama forte checchi tu voglia : t' aniorc acuoie 1' in);c|;nD, il 
riscalda. trova 1 mistiori concetti, gli amplilica, aggrandiacc cl 



Canto XXIV. Rfading$ on tht Purgatorio. 


Amor mi »pin, noto, cd a quel modo 
Che diltft dcntro, vo Bisnilicanilo."'-* 
— *■ fratt, iHsa t vcggio,"— diaac,— " il nodo 

Che il Notaro.t e Uuittone,g c mc riteniK 
Di qua dul dnkc siil nuovo ch' 1' odo. 



adoriu: ascolti lui, noia bene, c iiecnndn chc dctla, sccondo 
Hcrivi. Quato i it poelii. Chi lavora di %olo ingegno sensa qud 
funco, mHvc tanKuido, secco, stcniato; c moatra I' arte, non la 
nalura." Compaic hUo the excellent disquiniti-nn upon this 
passage in TommaHio'i) cummontar)' in the diKreiision at the 
end of the canto, where he aaya that in these few lines there 
il a whnle Ireattte on paetJc an. 

*vo ugmfifando: Compare Halaam'n answer to Balak (Samb. 
xiii, jS): -'And Balaam taid unto Bulak, Lo, I am come unto 
thee : have I now any power at all to say anything? the word 
ihut tiod pultcth in my moulh that shall I speak." Alao Chaucer. 
Complaint of the lilatkt Kni^M, igj. 

" But even like as dolh a skrivenere. 
That can no more tcti what thai he shall write, 
But as hia matter bcvide dothe cndite." 
ttiiii siandH for adtMO, and is contracted from the Latin in 
ifta hord. Compare Inf. xxiii, 7 : — 

" Che pii^ non si pareggia rao cd iwia. " 
And Juf. xxvii, ao-ai : — 

"Che parlavi mo Lvmbardo 
Dkcndo : l\sa Itn no, ^in non t' adiizo." 
lilNvlaro: Thi& is Jacopo da Lenllnn, known an it N9laj9, 
He IS flaid to have been a Sicilian poet. Although Danteacems 
here (o censure his school, an nniicjuutcd, he did not the less 

five him the credit of being one of the most elegant poets of 
ia time, and in Df Vnlg. Eloq. lib. i, ch. ii, quotes a sonnet by 
JaCDpo beginning: " .tf odoaaii iir v\ vogho." He Rouriehed 
about the year 1350. Nannucci iMaHtuile. vol. i, p. iu6) says 
that Tnssino and Bembo coniidcied him one of the best rhymeta 
of the early times; Koren/o de' Medici pronounced him gi'ave and 
sententious, but devoid ofihcxmallext Mowcroreracc. Nannucci 
thinks however that there arc aigns in his poetry of a transition 
inio the daUe slil ntutvo. 

J GttiKont : Fra Guittone d' Areaio was the first to brin^ the 
Italian sonnet into the perfect form that it has smce preitcrvcd, 
and he Icfl behind him the (arlicst specimens of Italian letter 
writing. He was bam about u^o of a noble family at Santa 
Firmina near Arcjiio. He was K^nerully known as Fra Ouit- 
lone, a* he was one of the reli|;iouH military Order of Pratt 
Oaudenti mentioned in Inf. x»ii. He was an accomplished 




ReaMtigs on Ihe Purgatorio. Canto xxiv. 

lo vcggio ben come le vMtre penne * 
Direlro at ditutor sen vanno siiettc, 
Che dclle nostre c«rto non t\-x'enn«. 

E qual piO a guardar oltrc t si mette, 

Non vede piii dall' uro all' altro Btilo ; " —J 
E quasi conteniato si taccttc. 


linguist, being learned in Latin, Provcn9al, Spaniati md French. 
Frum these languRges he took muny w«rda which he introduced 
into his writings. He was even more renowned for his prou 
thnn for his poetical compoidtianB. He di«d al Plarcncc Jn 1294, 
an unjust verdict in a court of law having despoiled him of his 
property and driven him into voluntary exile. 

*U votirt (icniu: Bonagiunta meunit the |>cn« of the mor« 
modern aonnelceris tiuch as Dante. Guido Cavalcanti, Cino da 
Pialoja, and others, compared with whoKc »t)-lc be felt that of 
himitcif and hia contemporaries to be indeed cold. 

t^iii ti guardar ottre: Dr. Moore (Ttrtual CrtlieUit, pp. 4i_j. 
416) obner^-es that there ia a very great amount of varia- 
tions in the reading of this line. Passin|{ over small chan^^ea 
in' the order of the words, the principal point is to determine 
the verb to be ttelectcd. The following are all found : (i) 
fanniare and (a) rigmtrijMre (see below); (3) ^itatart, only found 
in one of the Ilrera MSS., Milan; (4) grkdirt (see below); (j) 
gridart, only found in 8 out of aoo MSS. examined ; (5^ gh. 
riaut only found in Bodleian MS. "A." Dr. Moore diaiindly 

Enitn guafiiari or riguardart. "The former huK much larger 
IS. support, and *uits the rhythm of the hnc much belter — if 
such an argument be admiuiiblc." The M!v aulhoriiies arc too 
long to i)uotc here. Sec Dr. Moore, L c. p. 413. For the read- 
ing a rigMrdar oltrc, there is the MS. authority of the Santa 
Croce, Beilin. Caetani, and Cissinc&e and other Codicn, and 
the early editions of l-'nliKno, Jesi,and Napleii, of the Commentaries 
of Lana, Buti, Landino, VcJlutclIo, Brunonc Hianchi, and Wiltc. 
For the reading a grttdire there is the MS. authority of the 
Vatican and Vienna Cotticti, the printed editions of Mantua, 
Aldinc, Crusca, and others, and at Ihe Commentators /I niMimo 
Pior^ntino, Daniello^ Vcnturi, Lonthjirdi. Costa, Camerini, and 
others. Bcnvcnulo reads a guarJart, 

XJali um i\U tiltro ttUo: Biagioli explains this "dal naturale 
al ricercato." Some think it nyans "there is no comparison 
between the atylea of the early and of the modern school of 
poetry." I prefer Scartauini's explanation, namely, "there is 
no comparison between a conventioaal, imitatwl style, and a 
q>Dn(siieoiui style dictated by the heart." 


Canto XXIV. Readings on Ote Purgalttrio. 


But (cli mc in sec before me him who evoked those 
novel rhymes, beginning Donne, ch' avtU inteUeUo 
d" Amort {Lajies, who have inleUigetice 0/ love). 
And I to him : " I am one who, when love irv- 
Bpircs me, lukc note, and in lh»t Tashion ihtit he 
dictates within me I give utterance," "O Brother," 
said he, "now (issa) do I sec the hindrance that held 
back the Notary, Guittonc, and myscIT so short (di 
t/ua) of that sweet new style which I hear. I see 
how your pens follow closely after him who dictates 
(i.e. after Love) ; the which wiis certainly not the 
case with ours. And he who net* htm»eir to took 
further cannot more erTfCtively distinguish the one 
style from the other:" and then, as if content, he 
held his pcscc. 

Bonagiunta means that the later style adopted by 
Dante, Guido Cavalcanti and (he othcr», was so vastly 
superior. Or the passage may be translated according 
to Buti ; " cannot see any further diflTerence between 
thy moile of writing and ours than this, namely, that 
thou followest closely the inspiration of the mind, and 
we take a much wider range." 

Bcnvenuto thinks that Bonagiunta looked thus pleased 
with hiniscll, becau&e he had so well explained the true 
state of the case. 

Dante, having ended his conversation with Bona- 
giunta, descnbe<i the departure of the band of spirits 
by a beautiful Kimilc. 

Come gli augei * che vcman lunga il Nilo 

Alcunn volla in mcr fanno schicrn, 63 

Poi volan pifk in fretla e vanao in filo ; 

•Colli/ p/i iJu^ei : The birds here referred to iire cranca, who 
are Hescnbtri by Dante in two other patiagcs. vi*. Pvrg, xtvi, 
4J-48-, ttnd /"/. V. 4&-49. Compare alim Liicun. Phttrs. v, 7lI-7l3:— 
"SIry^K>^« »ic i;clidum, bruma pcllcnte, relinifuunt 
Poturae te. Nile, grucs, primoque voUttJ 

Kffinsunt varUi, caxu monstrante, figurax." 

O 2 


PfoJings on Iht Pargal/trio. Canto xxiv. 

Caai (ulta U sente che li era, 

Volgcndo il viso, rsffrcttft suo pMSO^ 
K per inajEreiia e per voter Icggieni.* 

Even as the birds that winter along the Nile will at 
one time form ihcmsclvcs into a Aock, then will il^ 
more in haste and go in file ; so did all the multitude 
that were there, turning their faces round, hurry on 
their steps, made tight both hy leanness and by (their 
own) good will. 

Dmsi(m III. — The conversation with Forese is now 
resumed, which Dante's interview with Bonagiuoia 
had interrupted Forese, who had been running at 
speed for a long titnc before he met Dante, is tired, 
and docs not go on with the other shades. Benvenuto 
thinks he may have been out of breath with much 
talking. Forese, walking at a slower pace, asks his 
old friend if they arc ever to meet again. Dante re- 
plies that the sooner the time connes for him to die 
and pass into Purgatory the better he will be pleased, 
foreseeing, as he docs, the terrible calamities that arc 
hanging over Florence. Possibly, too, he means that 
hift desire to quit the world of vexation and sorrow is 
even in advance of the mandate of God for his de- 

B come I* aom che di trottarc J t lauo 70 

♦ E f€r magr/tui * /*f wltr Uggifra : Luij^i V«nluri (^Simitiliiitini 
DanUaht, o. 263, mid. 435) pointa out that the multitude of spirtta 
were "a^ile per la msKfczia, ondc son pumti i goloti, e pet il 
dcHtdcriu che hanno di pUTRarsi dalla colpa." 

t-And 1 said. Oh that 1 had win^ like a dove! for then 
would I fly away and be at rest." {CtJlm Iv, r>.) 

Xlrvmrt: Ccsari {DtlUiu, vol. ii, p. 415) aays that trottan 
it uttcd equally for a man. on Tout or on horseback, as for the 
motion of animnlft. Compare Boccaccio (Dttam. Giorn. li. N^v, 
tl: "Kinaldu rimaso in cauiiscia e BCalza, esKenda il fr«itdo 
grande, e nevjcando tultavia forte . . . aonpinto dalla frcddurai 
trottando ai dirisfd vcrao Caitcl Qugliclmo," etc. 

Canto XXIV. Readings oti tUc Purgatorio. 309 

Lascis andar li compaKni, c si pauc({gia * 
Pin clio si Hfoghi I' affollar del caaoci ;t 
St lascio trspassar la santa gTc^ia 
Forcsc, c retro mcco sen vcniva, 
Diccodo : — " Quantlo lia. ch' to ti rivcgsia ? " — 75 
— "Non M," — riapoa' iolui.— "quanl' ionii viva ; ( 
Magi4non fift'l tprnarg mio tonto tustOi 

*t it P<xai^KUt: It ■« curious how many Commenlators and 
TraoalatorH read ii f^iuggia. Thia would not only involve a 
reflective verb pant^artt which does not cKist, but would also 
deprive the ncntcncc of the force of »i ^ (oil. ScartazjEini points 
thia out, and Andrenli comment k: "t si fitisieegia. e cok) luscialili 
andare pii»c(;cia. It Diitochi, col Biagiuli cd altri. Icggc si 
fautegiit ! ma bene avvcrtv il Betti che fauegf^iarti i manura 
itraauiiiHit t itaxa tumpiQ in Inllt It buoHt Mriltwc," 

t /' itffitllar dtt (MM : affulUrt is derived from the Latin fnllis a 
pair ol bellowa : und the verb refera to the uct of drawing in, :ind 
expelling the air from the lungs. Catsa comes from the Latin, cu^iut 
a receptacle, and here has inc frenae of the cheat, thorax, bee in 
Scartax/ini's later Contmenlary (Milan, 1893) an inlcmtinK 
quotation from CaveTni(roririVniiivf/ftDii'. Com. d/lf ittopopoUtrt 
lotcaiKt, Florence, 1S77), in which the author shows that recent 
discoveries in Phytinlogy have dctcimined the precise umllaritjr 
between the tncchariitint of rcapiration in an animal, and the 
tnechantEm of a pair of bellows. 

J ^Hiint' io mi viva : Compare thin with Virsil'a statement lo 
Anteua about the probable duration of Dante's life, In/, xxai, 197- 

** Ancor ti pyit nel mondo render fatna ; 

Ch' ei vtve. e Iuni;a vila uncor aspelta, 
Sc innanfi tempo gtAxi* a si nol chiama." 

gi/d giA non jia U tornar, etc.: Ccnarl puraphraiiea thia: "At 
desidcrio mio, sari sempre tardi il mio vcnir qua. per quantunque 
egll aia toslo." tie goen on la say that were a poet of modern 
lilDca to show so much true fAilh, and love of a future life, be 
would be laughed at for bcitiK full of hypocritical cant. N evcrlhc- 
ICM titc authority nf a Dante, if ail nlhcrarKumcntswcrc wiinting, 
might well put Ia the blush our petty would-be nages [uipul/lli] and 
drawinK-rooni poets (^c'lfifii il*iU Jamt), v/ho on their side would 
perchance bluih if Ihcy hnd toaay "Thy Kin|;(Iom come." Corn- 
pare Dante'* word* to Casella, f ir^f. it, 91, 91 ;— 
"Casella mio, per lorrarc alira volta 

Li dove aon, fo io quctio viaRttio." 
And Vila ixxii, can<. iii, si. 4 : — 


Readings cu the Purgatorh. Canto xxiv. 

Cb* io nan sin cal voler prima alia liva. 
Peracchi il loco, u' fui a viver posto. 

Di Kiomo in giorno pi^ dt ben si tpolpit,* 
Ed a IriMa luina par dlKpoxta'*-- 


And as a man who Ik npent with running allows hiA 
companions lo paft» onward, and thereby walks at 
leiiiure, until tlie panting' of his chest ii> allayed : so 
did Foresc allow thai holy throng to pass on, and 
camt behind with mc, saying: '■ When will it be that 
1 shall see ihce a^^ain? " " I know not," I nriRwcfcd 
him, " how long I niav liv« ; but Hiill my return will 
not ]k »o mpeedy but what I shall with my heart reach 
the tthore (of Furgitlor^-) stilt sooner. Uecuuii« the 
place where I vvas s«t to live (iV. Florence) becomes 
day by day more denuded of ifood, and seems pre- 
destined to dismal ruin." 
By way of consoling Dante. Forese now tells him that 
the ^wift I'clribution of God will soon fall on htm who 
is the chief cause of this evil at Florence, meaning his 
own brother Corso de' Uonali. Bcnvenuto says that 
it must be understood thai Corso. a soldier tried in 
arms, in skill and in bnaver>', had been restored to 
power in Florence, as chief of the iVcri, by Charles de 

" Dannomi HiijfoBcia U Boafitt forte. 

Qiiandn it pcnsiero nelta mcnle^ave 
Mi rcca quclla chc m' ha il cor diviso: 
E npctKC fiatc penkancio allx tnottc, 
Me AC vicnr un dcsio tanto soavc, 
Che mi tramuta tn ealat n«I vimi." 
•« sfioifvi ,■ Uuli "S^M^art i levar In polpa, e per6 si piglia qui 
sfotfart prr privare." I'vl^ "flesh" is u»cd by Dante neicral 
times in connection with omu " bones." C(. /'iir^. xxxii, 133 :— 

"Qunnto eofferson I' osaa tenza polpc," 
And /»/ >xvii, yj, 74 :— 

"' Menire th' io forma fui d* os»a e di polpc, 
Che la madrc mi dii," etc. 
And Canxonittt, can/. %x, sL 5 :— 

" Ma quc»lo fuoco in' have 
Oi& conautnato si I' ussa c la polpa."ctc. 

Canto XXIV. Rcaditigi on the Purgatcrio. 


Valois (Sam Terre, Ciirolui sine terra). He had anni- 
hilated the Bianchi at a time when ihe^' were at the 
zenith of their power and prosperity. His ttrrogance, 
however, and the state he kept, made him an object of 
suspicion to his colleagues in the Si^oria, and he fell 
into bad odour even among his own adherents, partly 
because they felt that be seemed more their lord 
than their comrade. Benvenuto is here guilty of a 
slight inconsistency, leaving it doubtful whether Corso 
was father-in-law, or son-in-law of Uguccione della 
Faggiuola. First he says of Corso " icd ftricifnu odiostis 
ffiopuh, guia /adus fuerat soar Ugucionis d^ Fagiola 
domini Pisarum potentissimi boitis florentinorum." Lower 
tdown, speaking of Corso's despair at the expected 
I reinforcements from Uguccionc not arriving, he says: 
*' UHdem destitutm tperato auxilio iouri, diumit domoSt 
etc." iJenvcnulo goes on to say that, being captured 
and on his way back to Florence, he tried to escape by 
setting lipurs to his horse, but that either by accident 
or design he let himself fall from the saddle, and was 
dragged a long way, till at last a soldier struck him on 
the head and killed him. 

Giovanni Villani (lib. viii, c. 96] tells the story 
somewhat differently from the account given by Dante. 
He says that, " being accused of treason, in less than 
an hour, without giving a longer time for the trial 
Messer Corso was condemned as a rebel and traitor 
to the commonwealth. The/ri'ort carrying the standard 
of justice, together with the Podestd, the captain and 
the executioner, . . . went at once to the houses in- 
habited by Messer Corso to carry oat the execution." 
Corso defended himself gallantly, confiding in succour 
from Uguccione della Faggiuola, " and the battle 


Readings on the Purgahrio. Canto xxiv. 

lasted most of the dav, and was so tierce that, notwith- 
standing all the power of the people, if the reinforce- 
ments expected from Uguccione and other friends in 
the district had arrived in time, the people of i-Jorence 
would have had enough to do that day." But the 
succours did not arrive, and Corso was obliged to take 
to flight. " Me&ser Corso, departing quite alone, was 
overtaken and captured, near Rovczzano, by certain 
Catalonian troopers, and as they led him to Florence, 
when they drew near to San Salvi . . . Messer Corso, 
for fear of falling into the hands of his enemies, and 
being put to death by the people, aufferin;; terribly as 
he was from gout in his handci and feet, let himself 
fall from his horse. The Catalonians seeing him on 
the ground, one of them thrust his lance through his 
throat, wounding him mortally and left him for dead ; 
the monks of the said monastery earned him into the 
Abbey, and some say that before dying he gave himself 
up to them in penitence, while others maintaio that 
(hey found him dead, and the next day he was buried 
at San Sahi, with little honour and small attendance, 
as people were afraid of getting into bad odour with 
the authorities." 

Scartazzini says that it is impossible to deny cre- 
dence to the account of Villani, who, on the isth 
September, when this occurred, was actually in Flo- 
rence, and was to a certain extent an eye-witness of 
these events. Dante, on the other hand, was far away 
in exile, one does not know for certain where, and 
would receive the intelligence at second or third hand. 
Scartazrini, somewhat fancifully, imagines that the 
account of the simple fall of Corso from his horse, as 
related by ViHanJ, may have been magnified little by 

Canto XXIV. Readings on the Purgatorio. 


little into his having been drasgcd by the stirrup, and 
that Dante must have written, though in perfect good 
faith, yet from erroneous information. 

Porese's prophetic utterance reveals to Dante the 
violent death of Corso, whose soul, he tells Dante, 
will have to go straight to Hell, \vhence there is no 
redemption. He professes to sec the horse dragging 
hiro to the Vallcv of the Shadow of Death. 

—"Or va," — diss' ci,— " chi quei che piil n" hacolpa* 
Vcgg* ia acod* d' una bntJa Iratto 
In v£r 1b vallc,t ovc maii non ai scolpL 
La bcsliA ad ognj pmma va piit ratio, S5 

Crescendo »iuprE tin ch' clta 11 pcrcuotc, 
E iBicift il corpo vitmcnic dinffkltcl 
Non haiiDO motto a vulfjcr quelle roteg 
— E Ar'uib gli o«hi al ciel,— chc ti fia chiaro 

Cio chc il mia dir p\ti dichUrar nnn puotc. <)9 

*fi>«i tJie piA II* h* col^a: Bcnvcnuto gives the fnllowing 
douMc interpretation: " Vtgg' iv qiul <ht f>iu n' An (elf>a, scilieet, 
fralteni mcum, Iratia a c^ia d" hhu batia, scilicet ab cquo, 
deinde a dxmonc. tiiv/r la vdtU, primo Arnalem {i.e. of the 
Arno), deindc infemalcm." Uutj %»y% that haiia must be 
untie rtttood In u double Hcnac, litetal and allrgork-al, heilia 
meaning the devil; but ScaiU^^ini takes b<ttia in the literal 
Knsc as the hone. 

tfn cir la vaiU: This is tha Valley of the Shadow of Death, 
or H«IL See In/, iv, 7-8 :— 

''in su la proda mi trovai 
Delia vatic d' abisso dolorosa," 
And Par. xvii, 1.17:— 

" Nel monie, c nclta vaJlc dolorosa." 
And Par. xx, 106, 107: — 

" u' non si ricdc 
Ciiammai a. baon vntei. " 
Idujalto: Compare /"/. vi. 40-jia. where Ciacco »«y*: — 
**0 tu, che we' per quoilo inierno tratto, 
. . . ric<>no»cimi. sc sai: 
Tu fosti, pTima eh' \o diafattu, falto." 
^qinUt roU : Compare i'orf. xxx, 109-111:— 
" NiMi pur per opra dellc rote niagnc, 

Che diiuan ciascun acme ad alctin fine, 
Secondo che le atellc «an compagae^" 


Rtiidings OH the Purgatorto. Canto xxiv. 

" Now go," saiti he, "for I can sec him who is most 
to blatnt for it all, dragged at the tail of a beast 
towards that valley, where nevermore can sins he for- 
given. The animal at every bound goes fatter, in- 
creasing hi)* speed until it smites him, and leaves his 
corpse hideously disfigiured. Yon spheres have not 
much to revolve — and he raised his eyes to heaven — 
before that will be quite clear to thee which my speech 
may not further explain, 

Foty;se means that many years will not elapse from 1300, 
the date of their supposed interview, and 1308, when 
Corso did actually die. He then explains that he can no 
longer accommodate his pace to that of Dante, but must 
resume his penance of rapid running, which the conver- 
sation has inteiTupted. 

Tu ti rimani omul, chi if tempo i earn* 
In qucsto regno si, ch' io perdo troppo 
Vcncndo icco si a para ■ paro." t— 

Now do thou stay behind, for the time is so precious 
in thi» rciilm that I lose too much in thus going side 
by side with thce>" 

Forese's departure is described by a simile, which 
Venturi [Similitiniim Danl/sche, pp. 209, 210) says is 
particularly well chosen, and adapted to those times. In 
which the use of arms was a natural means of defence, 
although unfortunately but too often a provocative of 
civil discords. 

* it Umf-o i carv : St:e Buti on tins: ■' Nt:»una ctwa i piu cara 
che 'I tempo a quclli chc sono in purgatorio, o tn ttato di pcni- 
ten/ia : impcrAchc quanto piCi lostosj contpie la pcniteniia,lanlo 
piti loHlo M vn a godefe." 

t a fitro a faro : Compare Petrarch, Trioitf. A mor. cap. iii. lera. 

" Una giovcnc grcca a paro a paro 
Loi nubili pucti gik cxnUndo." 

Canto Miv. Readings m the Pvrgatono, 315 

Qnal CKCc * alcuna volta di galoppo 

Lo cKvalier di ichierx chc cavalchj, 95 

B VI pet (ars) onor del primo intoppo,')' 

Tal ri putl da noi con maKKior valchi ;! 
Ed io rimati in via con cflSA j duc.S 
Che fur del mondo si s,x3m maliscakhi.|| 

Ab sometiiiies a Icnight rKsties forth at a gallop from a 
troop of hortieiiicn, and goes forwurd lo win honour 
in the hrsl encounter, so did he (Forcac) dcpnTt from 

*Qtui «M ; Compare Aricato, Ort. Fur. rv, at. rf : — 
" Veitjio ch' enlrare inn«n» si prtpara 
Quel tcr^o ngli altri a ^uixlugnat I' alloro ; 
Come buon corridor ch' ullimo liissa 
Lc moHCf c giungc, c innanti a lulti paa^a." 
f primo iitluppu : Toinfiias^o sukkcs'I* tli»t Daiitc may have had 
in his mind the battle of Campaldinn, where he (ought as a young 
ntan in IJ89. 

\con taa^f^ior valchi: Vaka or vaco is derived from vartare, 
varkure, valeart, vahmrt. Akin to the EnKliih " walk " and the 
Gennan" wiillcn." Ta/wirf means "to surmourt an obstacle". 
Compare Anuito.OW. Fur. iv. »t. 40:— 

''Che tAnta Icggiermenle c cnrrc c valcB 
Chc ncir arena I' orma not\ n' app«rc-" 
^c^eKo i itM; Ulanc {Vw. Dani.) says tonKlims^ this pronoun 
\(it$o) seems lo have no other duty than thai of giving greater 
^precuion to the image, and then it ix always placnl between the 
prc[M>«ition nnd the xubstiintivc without taking the gender or 
number of the latter. Cf. I'urg. iv, ^7: "Con csiO i pii," 

||£r«n uMlitmUhi here means Great Masters, firet in the matter 

tot knowkdjfc. Malitcako means the Kovcmor of a province, or 

tcommander of an army, lltanc explain* the word as magitltr 

LffHorMflij from mahrt « mare and %chmk a servant- In Danish and 

^narwceian too we find marr a marc, and ihalk « roeue. The word 

is used Dy Boccaccio, Dtcam. (iiorn. ii, .Nov. 8 : " f'crotto, il quale 

in Ualcxcol maliNcilcodcIre d' Inghiltciraerarimaso, similmcnte 

crescendo vcnnc in grszia del stgnor »uo." And Arioxto, Ori. Fur. 

«vii, M. 97 : — 

"Gmn diodnrro c insliscnlco repo," 
Vuti Gommcnti on the puiitafic in the text: "Cioi si grandi 
pn-cmatori del mondo. . . . Mariscalcoigovcrnaioicnc Iccorte, 
e de r esereito sotto lo 'mpcradorc, e de' eweTe persona eiperia 
riell«co»eda (ate: eomcHeppcno qiietlidue pncii (|ucllnehc ni con* 
vcnia fare nel mondo a vivcrc moralmcntc c civilmcnie.'' 


Readings ott the Ptirgalorio. Csnto xxiv. 

us with longer slridea (than ours) ; and 1 was left in 
the path with only tho»c two (Virgil and Statius), wbo 
were such mighty marshatB of th« world. 

Benvcnuto thinks that Dante has been very happy in the 
dignity he has given to these great Poets in styling them 
the world's marshals; since Virgil was unsurpassed in 
his descnptioii of the natural history of horses, and the 
wars of men ; and Statius in writinf; the wars of the 
Greeks; and both were deeply versed in the habits of 
men generally, the changing fortunes of kingdoms, and 
the geographical positions of the places they described. 

DivistoH IV. — Uante encounters a second tree, beneath 
whose overspreading branches the Gluttonous have to 
suffer even more acute pangs of hunger and thirst. 
Foresc had quitted the three Poets, leaving Dante in 
deep thought as he ponders over Forese's recent words, 
and the events Ihcy predict. It must be remembered 
that the Poets arc walking in a circle round the Cornice ; 
so that, as ihcy round the base of the cliff, they find the 
new tree quite close to them- 

E quando innnnit ■ noi entrnto fue,* 

Che gli occhi mici m (iro a tui itCKUaci, 
Come la mentc allc parole sue, 

Parverm' i rnmi gravidi c vtvaci 

D' un altro jvomo, e non niolto loolani. 


*iitiMMti . . . eatralojtt*; £'iJrarf tniMiiii ia the sanw as/>tu«r 
(litre, anti ix uncd in that icnsc bv Iloccaccio, ly«iim. Giorn. v, Sov, 
7: ''Mk ficuo, chc giuvxnc' era, c la fanciullaL itimilmcnle 
Rvuuuvaiio ncllo andiirc U msdrc dl lei c 1' alirc compagnc Bssai. 
fone non incna da amor suspinti, chc da piura di tempo: cd 
eiaendo jci^ t«nto enlrati innanzi.i^. y^tuJon «i>/(ir )n/n>ni (/) alk 
donnft c agli allri, chc appcna hi vcilcvano," etc. 

Cnntn xxtv. Readings oh the Purgatorio. 3x7 

Per nser * pure allora vAlto in Uci.t 105 

And when he had passed so far on in front of us, that 
my eyes had to go in pursuit of him, as did my mind 
of his words, there appeared to mc the laden and 
luxuriant boughs of another fruit tree, and not very iar 
off, because I had only just then turned (the corner) 
right upon it. 

Benvenuto s.iys that the shades of the Gluttonous are 
punished between these two trees, but this second one 
seems lo give more torment than the first. This may 
perhaps have been that tlie (ivst tree tormented them as 
to the quantity, and the second as to the quality of the 
and the water that tempted their appetites (/orle 
^quia prima punit in quanta, iecstnda in quati); or else, 
because the one punished the caters, and the other the 
drinkers, who, being the greatest sinners, have the 
greater torment, as will now be seen. 

The sufferinK spirits under the tree are compared to 
:hi)dren beg^inR for fruit to be given them, which some 
friendly hand exhibits and laughingly withholds. The 
Poets would approach the tree, but a mysterious voice 
within the branches warns them away. 

Vidi gentc sott' esso aliar le mani, 

B gndar, non »o chc, Tcrsa Ic froade. 

■•P«' ttitr, cl »cq. : Lombard) Uiw to show that there were 
9c\'cra1 Irccs, en countered from time to time by the pcnitcnt« in 
the verv middle of the path, but Scariazzini very justly polnta out 
that ^niy two trees arc mentioned, and the Po«t» meet with the (ir«l 
Ri they enter into the Cornice and the tccond as they arc about to 
depart from it. 

tUfi; An antiquated form ofU, like itci for /!,/<(/'. xitr, 84: P»tg' 
viX, 66 ; *nA qu'ui Cor qui, Ptirg. vii, 64. We find iaci u»cd in the 
luliui Bible, kcc i KtHgi vi, 14 : '* Therefore Knt be Ihilhcr Uuii 
' lionc«, and chariot*, and a treat ho»l." 


Readings on Ifu Purgalario. Canio xxrv. 

Quaii bramoai hinlulini * e vani.t 
Che prcgano, c il i>rc);atn nan rigpnndc ; 
Ma per f:irc »8cr ben Ix vui;ti2 acuta, 
Tien alto lor diiio e nol naaconde. 
I'oi si parti k1 come ricredula ; \ 

E noi vcnimma al grandc arborc Adeaaa, j 
Che lanti prcghi e Ixgrimc rifiuta. 
-"TrapMtalc oltrell scno farvi preiMo; 



*ftu»tolini : Compare Purg. amc, 43, 44 : — 
" VoUimi aha sinistia col rispitto 

Cn] quale it fanlolin loire alia mamma." 
And PMr. «x. 83. S3:— 

" Nan i (antin chc kI subito rua 
Col volto vcrao il lullc." 

+ i-flni ; On ihiii Cenari comment* : "' vani : comprcndc Rran 
sentimcnto quesia parata, come a dire, che invano levan Ic braccJa, 
e pianfjonoaqualcKciliino, chcmottraloracosadacMidcviderala; 
n%-vcroi'</iisi(dj»appoinicd)o x-itni^gMnti, il chc lornaal mcdcsimo." 

\ riittditia : " Kitrtdtrt ripctc crtdtrt," ant) means; "Credere 
diversamcnte di prima, da un' opinionc chc ora rcpudiamo". 
(i)i:iOM>iri'ii Peirocclii). 

^adesso: " Immediately, straightway," from the;I.,Alin luf i/»m, 
scilicet temfui. Scartaxnni remarks thai same. beiiiK ignorant of 
the true force of thin wotd amonj; old writer*, altered it into ail 
fiso. But Rosa Morawdo (Dtv. Com., Vcncs. 1757, voL iit, Append. 
P- i4)i »hown thin lo be a fal« readini;. and rcinarks that, were it 
to bo adopted, the word (sio would be used twice as a rhyme, and 
adds that the sainc wonln cannot be repeated in rhyme when 
bearing the same sense, except in case* tike that in /'»>-^. xi. 65, 
where Ihc repetition, three timeit over, of the Mcntencc ^er ammfiiUa 
Ki^'cs much greater force and fiery eloquence to the irony. The 
Gram Diiioimric uiyx (here are several inirtanceK in the early 
writers of adttto in the sense of imonlitiittttt, i.i. immediately. 
Dante da Majanu so uses il. Sec l'e<ti Jtt Prima Steclo 4ftM 
Lingua llaliaaot Florence, 1816, vol. ii, p. 476: - 
" Poi quel penstero obblio, e pauroto 
Divegno addesso, e taccio '1 meo volcre." 
And a^ain at p. 485. the same poel writes: — 

*' Che ogn' altra gioja addesso n' obbliai." 
Nannucci says that addeau, which he spells aieuo, in Ihta passage 
of Oanie da Majano is : "Subito; provenmle adu ncl scn»n 
tteiBo." (Nannucci, MmuhU Lttt. Lingua SUil. vol. I, p. 314, fool- 
note . 

WTrapatfttt* oUri : Scaitaatini points out that, out of each of 
ihc two trees, n voice in heard ini.uli;atinK tcnipvrancc. The two 

Canto XXIV. Readings ott the Purgatorio. 


Legno i pi& Bti clic (a mono Am Bva,* 
E questa pianta si levd da csso." — 
SI tm le fraiche non ao chi diccva: 

Per che Virgillo e Sla^iio ed io ristretii, 

Oltrc andavam d»l Uto che ai leviut 1*0 

Beneath it I saw people lifting up their hands, and 
ay'mg I know nnt what towards the branches, )uat as 
liltle children who pray eagerly and in vain, and he 
to whom they pray answers not; but to make their 
lon^ng very keen, holds on high (the object of) 

dtfTercnt utterances arc in perfect conionance with one another, 
and thii last one may remtncl uh ot Ood'a precept to Adam (Gai. 
ii, 17): " Dui cf the Itec of knowledge of good and evil, ihou ithall 
not eat of it." 

* L*gno . . . pa m . . . mono lio Eva : It was in ihc original 
Tcrrcniria) Piirailiie thAt the firat Ihw uf tibxtincnce was plAced, 
and it waa broken, ThcK examples arc uticied here as checks 
upon gluttony: of which tht liriil exumple in that of Kvc, who, 
frioni the desire of eatini: nn apple, brought death upon the human 
race. The first tree announi:ed the exumple of Ihe temperance 
of Mary {Purg. ixii, 143) ; this Kccond tree citci the intemperance 
of £vc. Compare Furi;. xxix, 23-27 : — 

"nndc buon zcia 

Mi fe' riprendcr I' arditncnto d' Eva. 
Che lit dove uhhidia In Icrra c it ctcio, 

Fcmniina sots, e pur ic«ti f«rmsta, 

Non sofferK di star soiio alcun vclo." 
Perez (t SttU Cfreiii.p. 220,1 after mentioning that the rathersofihe 
Church hnve ever cnntrAiited Mary with live in varinuii way*, and 
pointing out thai, while the fini of these trect annouiK-cd the 
temperance of Mary, thia last retords the n'uttonyof Eve, );oe» 
on Io ssy : " Due mensc son postc innanzi all' imagina^ionc c al 
pcnaicTO dci penileiiti : 1' una in Eden, tra I'crbe e t finri ctie 
poco vtante doveano caneiarsi in triboli e spine ; 1' altra in Cana, 
fra r idrie dell' acqua infcconda ch' era per tramutarsi nel vino 
vivifico. Vcdcni Eva c Adnmo all' una, Maria c Gcsii all* altra: 
Ift Eva, che dali' albcro victalo, trac c vcrsui nc' pcttt umani il 
succo ondc a' awelena ogni bell' affetto; <)ut Maria, che da Colui 
il quale ha detlo. to v>no la viu. trae il vino, che reataura e santi- 
licA r amorc : Ii cominciata 1' ora dclla cndutn, qui accelcrata 
I' ora del risorgimenio al gcnerc umano." 
ftiltea: Compare Par. xx\-i, 139, 140:— 
" Net monte che ti leva pio dall' onda, 

Fu' io," 

320 Readings m the Purgatorio. Canto xxiv. 

their desire, and conceals il not. Then they de< 
parted AH thouf^h diKiippointed ; und wc aliaightway 
came up to the niiii;hty tree, which sets at naught 
80 many prayefa and tears. '■ Pass ye on farther, 
without drawinji near ; the tree that was calcn of by 
Eve is higher up {i.e. in the Terrestrial Pamdise). 
and this plant was reared from it." Thus spoke, 1 
know not who, among the branches ; wheroupoo 
Virijil and Slalius and I, drawing close together, 
went on further along the clitT-side that liaes ab- 

The three Poets passed to the left of the tree, on that 
side of the way where was the perpendicular side of llie 
mounlain. The voice continues to tetl of further in- 
stances of Gluttony, first giving an example of the cvU 
effects of immoderate drinking, then introducing a story 
from Jewish History of the men who drank immoder- 
ately of water, as a lesson that moderation \% to be 
practised even in those things that are not of them- 
selves hurtful. 

This concludes the description of the punishment of 
(he Gluttonous. 

— " Ricordivi,"— <licen— " dei mnlcdcHi * 
Nci nuvol) formati. che naiollt 
TcHMi combatt^r cui doppi petti ; 
E dcijli librci ch* a) bcr si moslr&r mcdli, 

*Jei maUJtili SH uuvati /ormali ; The Centaurs arc nid to 
have been tlic progeny of Ixion und the cloud Ncphck, to whom 
Jupiter had given Ihc appcarani:c of Juno, bclnvcd by Ixion. 
They were half men and half hnrscs, for which reason Dante 
(peaks of their double breast!). Being invited by their neitihbnuns, 
the L^pilhic, to the nuptiaU of Pirlthous and Hippodamia, and 
becoming drunk, Ihey aitemplcd to csrry off the bride, and the 
other women. They were opposed by Theseus and the LapiIhE, 
who defeated thctn and slew a great number of them. The battle 
it dc8cri)>cd by Ovid jUrf. xii, a 10-535} i Virg. Gtorg. ii, 455 ti 
Iff. ; Hor. Cam. 1, xviii, ^. 

Canto XXIV, RcadtNgi m the pHTgaiario, 321 

Perchc non gii cbbc Gedeon*compagni, laj 

Quando ver Nfadian diticese i colli."— 
Bl, nccostaii all' u» dc* iluc vivagni,t 
Paiiaamiiio, udendo colpc dcUa golt. 
Semite (;!& da mixeri guadagni. 

"Bethink you," ssid (ihc voice), "of those accur&ed 
doud-bei^otten beings (the Centaurs), who, when over- 
gorged, Fought against Theseus with their double 
hrcaals. And (bethink you) of those Hebrews who 
showed themselves over-indulgent in drinking, for 
which reuson Gideon had ihem not for companions, 
when he went down the hilts towards Midian." Thus 
closely skirting; one of the two marginB (the inner 
one), wc passed on, hearing of the faults of Gluttony, 
(which were) followed crewhile by woeful guerdons {ia. 
jejirful retribution). 

Benvenuto remarkii haw many there are who will 
commit thefts and robbeines to indulge their appe- 

*iion gli tbhe Gtdwn : Others read ko i votU Gtdton, \>M this 
reading is rejected by alt the beat Coinnvcntalors. Dr Moore 
rcadH P(r ckr non v' Me. This is Ihc rcadm); of the first four 
Editions, and others, but I feel mpelf unable to follow it, bccautc 
I sec no way of Iranttnling it out "wherefore Gideon hdd no 
companions in that place," which, ax is pointed out by Scanszzini, 
makes Oantc suy what it not in accurdiincc with the Biblical 
account. Sec Judgti \\\, ^ 6 : " So he brought the people down 
unto the water: and the Lard naid unto Gideon, Bver>' one that 
lappcth water with his tongue. a» a doe lappcth, him khalt thou 
set by himselfj likewise every one that boweth down upon his 
kncM to drink. And the number of them thai lapped, pultinj; 
their hand to their niouth. were three hundred men : but all the 
rest of the people bowed down upon their knees to drink water." 
* vivagni : Comfiare InJ. xiv, iit-iij, where viv^ignv is used, as 
here, to wgnify the mar^n on which the Poets are walking : — 
" Sc il prcacntc rigagne 
Si dcriva cosi dal noxtro mnndo, 
Perchi ci appar pure a questo vivagno ? *' 
And a^ain in /n/. ixiii, 4[>, in Ihc name way. In Pitr. it, tjj-ij}, 
iwrofa* signifies the margins of the books of ihc law»:~- 
" Per quc^to 1' Bvangelto c i l>ottOt mugni 
Son dereliiti, e solo «i Decretali 
Si ttudia ai cbe pare ai lor vivagnL" 

322 Readings on the Purgaloria, Canto xxiv. 

tites, yea, will change their friendships like a dog who 
will change his name for a crust of bread. 

Division V, — In this concluding portion of the Canto, 
Dante relates how an Angel purified him from the ^n 
of Glultuny. 

The three Poets arc walking on side by side, but apart 
from each other, meditating in silence. 

Poi railart;ati * per Ik atrada &ola, i jo 

Ben millc passi c piiJ ci poriarot ollrc, 
Cantcmp]an<ia cUetcun ttcnia pxrola. 

Then spreading out along the lonely road, a good 
thousand pace.^ »nd more had carried us forward, 
each in contemplation, ^vithout a word. 

*nlhrgati: Cesari explains this : " Erano vcnuti fra la costa 
c r albrro ristrctti insicmc ; psBsato Talbcro, si aparttrono al 
larRo della via tala, cioi disoccubala." Blane iVot. Dant.j Kayi; 
of this ward, that it is only u«ed as a participle in this one pas- 
aage in the Diiina Commttlia, and it mcaiiik : '-One who findu 
himself at large on a road not restrained bv any nbstaclc." 
Benvcnuto explains the full force of the word oy ahoviinK that, 
before, they had been nblit-ed lo wiill< close alonj; the edge of 
the eltfi. but. now that llicy had led the tree behind them, they 
could again walk freely in the middle of the Cornice. Prati- 
cclli tays that nilfar^ati mcani that [>anic, Virgi] and Statiun 
were no longer riUrtUi imunu, but were walkiriK apart from each 

fci portaro: Some read « f'orlammo, but allhouKh pvrUtm for 
imi»r( may have been used in more recent limes, it was certainly 
not in u»e (says Scartaziini) anions (he writcn of the Irtetntv. 
in favour of w^rtiiro. compare VirR. Batol. Ed. ix, i :— 

" Quo te, Moeri. pedes ^ an. quo via ducil in urbem ? " 
And Horace, Carm. iii, 111,49; — 

'' I, pedes quo te rapiunt ot aune 
bum lavel nox et Vcnuii." 
\Vc have the same u>c by Dante in Pnrg. xxviii. j] :— 
" Giil m' avenn traKportalo i lenti passi 
Dcntro alia sclva antica." 
Scartaszini saya, moreover, thut all the early CWwvi read ei 


Canto XJtlV. Readings on Ihe Purgatorio. 


Benvcnutothinksthat their mcdilations were to prepare 
iheir minds for the profound subject they were about to 
discuss in Canto xxv. &o that, to elucidate it. the three 
worked toRethcr. Vii-gil representing the natural. Statius 
the moral, and Dante the divine intelligence. Benvcnuto 
adds: "In the whole Commedia you will find but few 
Cantos more difficult to understxnd (than Canto xxv)." 
Their conlemplations are interrupted by a new voice. 
Dante looks up and sees that it is an Angel who has 
addressed them. They have now come to the end of 
the Sixth Cornice, and thiit is the Angel of AbMinence 
pointing out to them thestairvvay leading to the Seventh. 
Dante is so dazzled by the radiance of the Angel, that 
his eyes refuse their office, and he is obliged to have 
recourse to his guides. 

— "Che sndate pentandn si vol* «ol Ire ?" — 
Subita voce dt».&e ; ond' ia mi hcosb!, 
Come fnn bcEtie epivcntate c poltre.t 135 

i svl trt ; Wo have seen it simiUr kind of rhj-Tiiinf; by Danle 
in Pitrg. n, 4-6, where per li is made to rhyme with mu-ti ; and 
tnj. vii, 28-30, where puF /i rhj-mes with burli. The »[nalln«s« of 
the group formed by the three Poets attracts the attention oflhc 
Angel, «s the penitents apparently were in the habit of going 
nund th« Cornice in large bands. 

ipoUrt : Benvcnuto Ukcs pi>llre to be for poUdrc (idat, puUa) 
and translates " like ioaU," iddins that the compariKon ik 
exceedingly appropriate, forit is as though Dante would avow him- 
self to be young and inexperienced, nhereaii his companionti were 
' mcnof y«ars {antiqui) »,nA of vast experience. It Rhnuld be noticed 
Ithat poitrxi n Ihc original form of the modified term now in use 
Ipoltroni, lazy, sleepy, torpid, and the pausage would imply that 
■nimals are suddenly startled, m/nire poUnuoiic, while in a torpid 
stale. Compare the following two pa^sa^ei from Arionto. In 
the Arst iOrl, fur. xxiii, st. 90), he latieii pottra in thcacniK of 

" La bestia ch' era spaventoaa e poltra, " 
In (he (iccond iSal. iv, ad Annibale Maleguccio, v. 49, etc.) he 
gives the sense oipoUrvnt. 

"E pi{) mi piacedi poaarlc poltrc 
Membra, chc di vantarlc. . . ." 
X 2 


Readings on the Purgalorio- Canto mv. 

Driiiai U testa per vcdcr chi fosai ; * 
E giammfti non ni videro in fornacc 
Vetri o melalli si lucenti e rossi.t 

Com' to vidi tin chc dices :^"S' a vol (liace 

^fonlnre in su, qui si convien dar va\{t ; 140 

Quinct «i va ^ chi vudI andar per pace." — 

L' Bspetto suo m' avealavJMa tolta: 

Perch' io mi voUi rciro jS "' "*>« doilori, 
Com' uum the va Hccnnilo ch' cgli ascolta. 

*■ What go yc three alone thus thinking about ? " said 
It voice suddenly ; where^it I started, as do frightened 
and timid bcaals. I rai&cd my head to sec who it 
might be ; and never in a furnace were ihccc seen 
glass or nielfils so glittering and red, as one I saw, 

♦/jMi; In early time* the third person mnEuUr of the imper- 
fect tiuhjunelivc which ends in e ended in t. Comp. /*■/. iv, &f ;— . 

"Non laKctavam 1' andar perch' ei dicessi." 
And \x,bQ:— 

"Che con le sue ancor non mi chiudesni." 
And Vila dt Cola di R'unxc, cap xxxvii : ■' Ve&tiva panni come 
/niii una»inino tJrando." Therefore Scartajuini maintainx thai 
it in not a poetical licence taken by Danic Io suit the rhyme, 
but a rccului lerminaiion of the time, now obiiolclc. 

f meltiUi ii luccnti t ro«i : Compare E:fk. i, ;: "And they 
sparkled like the colour of burnished brags," And Dunul x, 6 : 
" His cycbaulampKol Rre, and hi.i arms and his feet like in colour 
to polished brasn. (In ihe Vtilcate " icriB candcntiK.**) 

fsi va : This is an Italian idinm. "Quinci ti fdJithis ia the 
way," ai in In/, in, 1: "Per me « va=through me ii the 

g mi ttoUi rtlro n' miti dolioii : Thii docH not mcanj as aome 
translate it, " 1 tuineil back to my Teachers." Retro and DUlre 
arc always followed by <i, and nin a' miti dfllori mean^ "behind " 
or "in the wake of ' nty Teachers. This paMaj;e ix in close 
analop' with /«/. jotxlv, j-io, vrhere !3aiile in the nethermost 
Hell nnit catches night of a coIombI windmill in ihc hairj- gloom, 
which he aflcTwardi diacovers to be the upper part of [,ucifcr'B 
body, but bcinc unable to fiicc the icy blast that u blowing in his 
face he gets for»heller behind V"iri;il : — 

" Vedcr mi pane un tal 'di^cin allotia : 
Poi per lo venlo mi riBtrinsi retro 
AI Duca mio ; chi non gli cr^ aliia grotta." 

Tanto XXIV. Readings oh the Purgalorio. 


who said : " If it he your pleasure to mount upward, 
it is here tliut ye must turn >i»iile ; this h the way for 
those who would go in quest of pence." Mis aspect 
had bcfed me of my sight : wherefore t got round 
into the wake of my Teachers, likf: one who goes 
according as he hears (1.^. like a blind man who 
guide hitniwlf by souml). 

Dante now describes his purilication by the Angel. 

E quiile, annunxiatricv dceli albnri,* 145 

L' aurti f di niH)-(;jo movcsi ed oIczxa : 
Tutta impregiuta dall' erba e dai fiori: 

Tal mi ncntit un vcnto dar per mcz/a 

La frunte, c ben scnii' mover In piuina. 

Che fo' simtir d" AmbroBia [ 1* orcjtza. ijo 

E scnii' dir :—*' Bcuti cui alluma 

Tanio d) graiia, che 1' amor del gusrto 
Nel petto lor troppo disir non futna, 

Eouricndo^ sc m pre quant n i giuMn."-^ 

And as the brcc/c of May, a herald of the dawn, 
moves and breathes forth fragrance: all impregnate 

* imnantiatriu tU^li atfiori : Thi^ reminds one of Danie's 

awaking at the approach of dawn, after passini; his 1«M niKlit 

in Virpl'* company 00 the ulairway kadinf; from the Seventh 

I Cornice tu the Terrestrial Paradise. Sec Purg. xivii, 109-113. 

I'The Ammimo Fivrtntiim interprctii ibc passaKc we are di* 

icuasing at follows : "Vuol dire chc, innanzi chc &i licvi I' alba, 

comincia a trsirre uno ^eniicello. L-he hi cliiama uurn, ei quevta 

aura, cittt qucnto venticcllo, chc hi lic«-a da' fiori el dall' crbe 

odorifere, rende odore ct loaviti." 

t Hum ; Compare Tasso, Grr. l.iber. iii, st. i >- 
" Uil r aura incftaaf^eia erasi deMa 

A nun^iar chc « nc vien 1' aurora." 
\itmhro%ia: Dante's noliona of ambronia were derit-ed from 
Virgil. Sec Ororg. iv, 415: — 

*' Hkc ait et liqtiidutn ambroMK dilfundii odorem.'' 
And Ain. i, ioj:— 

•*AmDro«»quecomadivinum wrtice odniem 
Ij Ei^rUndo : Compare Tauo, Grr. J.ihtr. vit, «l. 4 ;— 
" Cibonon prende Rik ; chi dc' suoi mall 
Solo si psBCc, c sol di pianto ha sctc." 

Readings oh the Purgaforio. Canto XXIV. 

with the herbage and the flowers; m did I feel a 
wind on the middle of my forehead, and 1 distinctly 
felt the movemenl of the pinions that made nie perceive 
the odour of ambroaia. And I heard (the Angel) say : 
" Ulcsscd arc they whom so large a measure of grace 
doth illumine that the love of taste doth not excite 
(iit. cause to smoke) in their breast too great a desire, 
hungering at all times (only) so far as is just." 

On the above passage Perez (/ Sette Cercki, p. 237) says 
that in the description of the Angel that presides over 
the fasting of the spirits who proceed in prayer round 
and round this Cornice, he is much struck with the 
similes of the flowing furnace and of the sweet and fre!%h 
breezes of May. The two similes might, at first sight, 
appear to be at discord with one another, but when one 
thinks them over more closely, one's thoughts recur to 
that Angel who u-atched over the fasts of the young 
Hebrew captives in Babylon, and made their innocent 
countenances appear fairer and falter in flesh than at) 
their companion* who ate sumptuously of the king's 
meat — an Angel of such beneficence and power, that 
when they were cast into the burning fiery furnace, he 
was able to waft away the flames and impart to them a 
sweet savour from Heaven, as they walked unharmed 
in the lire, singing praises to God. Like unto him in 
very truth is this Angel whose countenance glows as a 
furnace, and whose wing wafts ambrosial fragrance in 
the air; the Angel who may well be termed the Angel 
of Abstinence, as is evidenced by the word* he iipeaks 
to Dante : Blessed an ihey who hunger after rigiiteousMesi, 
ntui not after earthly food. 


Canto XKV. Readings on Ihe Purgalorio. 




Ik the list Canto Dante completed his description of 
I the purgalion of Crlultony in the Sixth Cornice. In 
this one he treats a very perplexing subject which had 
arisen out of the previous conversation.* 

Benvenuto divides the Canto Into four principal parts. 

In the Finl Divhim, from ver. 1 to ver. 30, Danle 
proposes to Vtrgil a question of much difficulty, and 
Virgil answers him in general terms. 

In lite Second Division, from ver. 31 to ver. &0, Statius 
at the request of Virgil e.vplains al length how it is 
that the soul, when separated from the body, is able to 
suffer physical puniahraent, and he describes the gen- 
eration of the embryo. 

In Ihe Third Division, from ver. 6l to ver. 108. Stntlus 
describes how the sotil is di-velopcd in the cmbn,'o; 
how i( gets separated from the body; and itb sensitive 

* Dante having antUed how it body that it not in need of food can 
aufr«rfrom cmHcialion, Slaliuit kIvcs an exposition of the nature 
, of M sensitive body in itii tarthly life, as well as ihc nature of 
tttal bnity which i* tormcnlcd in ihe spiritual life. A very arid 
cxpu^iiiion. saj-H Tomiimft^u, hut inlciHiicnicd with ftastics u( 
poetical light »nd with po«-ctful ilictiun, as well as with philcnofihy 
Ibat in ]>la«ea is even man InK (lian would appear al first aight. 



Readittgs on the Purgalorio. Canto xxv. 

fit the Fourth Division, from ver. 109 to vcr. tjg, 
Danlc enters upon the subject o( Sensuality, and de- 
scribes its punisliment in the Seventh CoiTiice. 

Diviiion I. — When the Canto opens, the three Poets 
arc still in the Sixth Cornice, but are standing at the 
entrance ta the new stairway, just where Duntc had 
felt the Angels wing erase the last F but one from his 

Dante Arst specifies the hour, to show that they 
have no time to lose. 

Ora era ondc il salir non volm atorpio,* 
Chi il sole avca lo ccrchio di mcri^pe t 
Lascialo nl Tauro e la notte alio Scorpio.] 

' ilotfio ^nd slrnpfiia mean literally, "impcdiimnt. hindrance, 
conlraiiety." In lhi» senile we find Ine w^rtl in Petrarch, purl iv. 
Son. J :— 

" S' Amorc o Moric non di quulclie atroppio 
AlU IdB novella ch' oia ordisco," etc. 
The Gran DitUinario quotes in iliusiralion (rum Giov. Villnni, HI, 
cap. : : "1 KicKoluni c lum MrKunci . , . d&vano qiiarlci storpio 
polenno alia fiedificazionc di Firtnjre." But in my own copy 
ol' Villani, instead of ilorfio, the reading in tturt/o, which B note 
ciplains ib the same as dtiturbo. 

JCtrchio Ji fneriggt : Compare I'urg. xxxiii, 103-104:^ 
"E piii comisco, c con pii^ Icnti paMJ, 

Teneva il Hole il ccrchio di rneri|;ge." 
And Parg. u, 1 :— 

" (iiA era ii sole all' oriz/onte ^tuiitv, 

Lo cui mcridinn ccrchiu copcrchia 
Jciusmlem col suo piO alio punto : 
ii la n«ttc chc oppositA n luf ccrchia, 
t'vcia di Gangc fuor c:<illc bilantc, 
Che Ic caKK'^n di man tmnndo lopcrchici-" 
^ Stereo: "Lc Kolcil cM dani> k B6licr ct Ic Ttureau c«t au 
mfiridien, c'eM qui; lout le sijine du Hfilier en c«t M»rti, Or le 
Kodiaquc ntcltant vinel-^ualrc hciire» i [la&^iT par Ic in(ridien, 
chaquc nigne y met deux hcurcH, c'cKt-ik-difc qu'il tta'n deux 
hcurcs apris midi. Pc mime la nuit dcvsit Otrc daiu le &ignc de 
la Balance, ct la Ilalanccnyani quilld tc point tippotf du tneritlien, 
devait avoir U>is6 la place au Scorpion." (Ozanam, Purgntoirtf 
P- 4»7-) 

Canto XXV. Readingi on the Pnrgatorio. 


It was the hour io which the ascent brooked no delay, 
for the Sun hod abandoned the meridian circle lo 
Titurus, itnd Night (had abandoned it) to Scorpio. 

Dr. Moore {Time References, ^. 107), says: " This is 
one of the passages on which I think some supci-fluous 
astronmnical ingenuity has been cxpenclctl. the point 
being whetlicr we arc to make allowance for the reuo- 
cetuiton of the Equinox and the error in (lie Calendar, 
and so take the Sun's true astronomical position, or 
whether wc arc to be guided by the ordinary- popular 
notion that the Sun ts in Aries for a month from March 
2 1st onwards. The difference of the result is absolutely 
immaterial, as it is only a question between about i2.iO 
and 2 p.m.. either hour here being quite arbitrary and 
lictitious. Here again 1 think it is more probable that 
Dante adopts the sense In which ordinary people would 
be most likely lo understand his words, just as we 
popularly refer to the indicatioim of the compass as it 
stands, without allowing for the magnetic variation, 
though wc arc quite aware that in England it amounts 
toa no less serious difference than about 23 degrees. If 
this be the way to interpret the passage, the Sun being 
now rather backward in Aries, the time when Taurus is 
on the meridian of Noon, and the opposite sign of 
Scorpio on that of midnight, as here dcsciibcd. would 
be generally undci'stood to be abuut 2 p.m., though, as 
each constellation cuvers many degrees of space, the 
indication is only an approximate one." * 

We may therefore proceed on the assumption that in 

* See in TommsBio'H Coiiinicnlary the cliw)utsiiian on this point 
by Antonclti. Alto Delia Vallr. U Stnui Guerafiro-AtiroiHimico, 
p. 71 el teq. 


Readings on thr Purgalorio. Canto xxv. 

Purgatory it waji about z p.m., and in Europe about 2 

Dante now describes their progress by an appropriate 

Per che, come fa 1' aam che non ■' affigge,* 

M» vBssi slU via sua, cbecchft gli appaia, 5 

Se di bixogna »timoto il trufigKe ; 
Cosl cntrammo noi per la cBllaia,t 

Uno innanii altro, J prendenda la icala 

Che per art»ra i snlitor dispnix. 

Whercfotc, as docs the man who, whatever may 
appear to him, will not stop, but goes forward on 
his way, if the goa^l of necessity spurs htm on ; so 
did we enter through the gap, one before the other 
talcing the stairway, which by its narrowness unpairs 
the climbers (i.r. obliges them to walk in single lilc). 

Bcnvcnnto remarks that Virgil was walking first, 
StatiUH second, and Dante third, and now, by a vcr^* 
intelligible comparison, Uante shows what an intense 
desire there was in his mind to put a certain qucsrlion 
to his leaders, but that tie lacked the courage to begin 
speaking. He is burning to know how it is possible 

* t' affiggt : nfrrma. Compan Purr, sxx, 7 : — 
" Penno li bHIsm/' 
And uxiii, 106-7: — 

" [^unndo b' afliMcr, si come b' affif^ge 

Chi va dinansi a gcntc per iscona." 
See aUo tnj. xii, 115: — 

■* Poco fliil oltrc il Ccntauro s' affisse." 
t catUia : Blanc lays that calltt/i.t is the opening in a hedge. 
"CtiHaja, via di campagno, q con cancdlo, a Hpcrto, o toraio cun 
fiTani[itopped uf n-itAl>ramliUay'~Gniii Duiofuria. Compare Inf. 
X, i:— 

" Ora Bcn va per un Mrcrelo calle." 
Sec ihc footnote on callt in my Readingi n» tkt Injttno, vol. !, p, 

t Umo tHnmni aUro : Ihcue words are repeated in the Antt line 
b( the next Cantn. 

Canto XXV. ReadtHgs oh the Purgatorio. 


for atrial forms, which have no need of food, to suffer 
from emaciation. 

E quale il cico^nin che leva I' nU * 10 

Per voglijL di ^'(}la^c, c non s' atlcnta 
D' abban Jonir la nido, c giA In cals : 

Tal tra io con voKlia accctta « itpenta 

I3i domindar, vcnendo intina all' atlo 

Che fa colui ch' a dicer «' argomcnta.t ij 

^nd like the younj; stork, that spreads its wing 
through will to fly, and yet docs not venture to leave 
the nest, but lets it (the wing) droop again ; such was 
1 with d«sire ta ask (at once) kindled and (luenchcd, 
getting as far as the movement (of the lips) that he 
mnkes who prepareH himself to Hpeak. 

Benveaulo &»ys the comparison is appropriate in all 
its parts; for the great tragic poets. Virgil and Statius. 

* it fini^m dit kva I' ata: On this see Venturi, Stmitilmimi 
Damttuhe, p. j<54, Sim. ix-j: " Altra similitudine, non mcno gentile, 
tratta datia cicogna. &i noti la sceltn dellc par&le per ottenere 
maggior dolcciza di numcro c Ic\itA di vuoni. II cico^ino non 
(libatlc 1' ala. ma !' alia appcna per piovarsi « volarc; e non 
aniachiandosi, I' abbabsa tiralo. Ma Dante dice leva, chc ha 
luono piii lenue itt rI^ii, e^iu /<iiii/o, cliei pij^let^iero mocimento 
di atihaua; e dkcndo Ala U'afO C noftui/, esp^iml^n^celioiltlmI>f 
« r impolenza." There is a pawagc lomcuhat similar in Slatius, 
Tktb. X, 458-462 :— 

"TOlucrum sic lurba Tcccntum, 
Cum leducem Inn^o pro»pcxit in xthcre mairem 
Ire cupil conirn, aummaquc * margine nidi, 
Exatat biani: jam jamquc cudat. ni pcctore toto 
Obstet aperta paicniv cl amanlibus incrcpet nlia." 
Compare also I'ar. xix, qi-<>j:- 

" Quale sppr' csso i) nido si rigira, 

Pai che he paictulo la cicogna r fif^li, 
E came quei ch'i pasto la rimira," etc. 
t toiui ch' a liicer i' argommta : Compare ShakcepenTe (Htimltt, 
act ii K. 1. near Ihc end) : — 

" Antwei it made none : yet once methoughl 
ll lifted up ilK head and did addreid 
Itscir to motion, like a> il would ^peak." 


Readings o» the Purgalorie. Canto xxv. 

may be compared to storks building their nests on the 
lofty roof^ of houses,* and Dante, as a younger poet, 
may well be likened to tlie nedgcling. And as the 
fledgeling stork desires to spread its wings before the 
fitting time, but, feeling itself powerless 10 fly, lets 
them droop again, so did Dante, after walking for a 
mile in silence, feel keenly desirous of moving his 
tongue to propound a question on a very elevated 
subject : but. doubting whether lie ought to ask before 
the fitting season, he repressed his desire until he had 
obtained the leave of hi& ciders. 

He does not have to wait long, for, just as Beatrice 
on a subsequent occaition (see Par. xvii, 7-12) saw 
Ihniugh his thirst for informalion, and ordered him to 
send forth the flame of his desire, so here does Virgil 
intuitively divine what is In his mind, and eommandtt 
him to speak it out, which Dante does in the plainest 

Non laecid, per I' nndir che fosse ratto. 

Lo dnke Padi-c mio^ msi diu>c :— "Scoccu 

L' arcodel dirchc infinoal km t hai Inito." — 

AlloT aicuramcntc uprii U bocca, 

E cominciai :— " Come «i pod far msEro I 10 

LJk dove I' uopo di nutrir non toccK ? '* — 

* Uo«s not this teem an IhouKh Itenvenulo credited Dante 
with some knowledge of notthern Burnpc? 

f infino al ftrtv: Speech flicn ■» lichtly and irrovockbly as an 
arrow, and penetrates into ihc depth of the heart. 

I Come it pui far magni,clc.: " Notis abuidons un de ces paK- 
sages oil, SOUK la couronnedu poete, le philosophe «e d^ouvre; 
0111 Dante uimc h ttaiter une de ccs qucalionis qui iigiiaicnt I'fcole 
et diviuient Ici doctcur^ Dan* tc Kupplicc den ^"ui^o'onds il 
montre comment ten dincH pcuvcnl anuQru ilc la fBim, ct quelle 
est la condition de I'Ame apr6<^ In morl. le tappoit du cnrpa el de 
Vime, vn un mot. tout Ic tnyttfre de U destiniie humaine : non la 
paychnlngie u:ulcmcnt, maU I'BntliropnIoipe." (Ocanam, Pxr- 
gulvi*!, p. 41(h) 

;anto XXV. Readings nn the Purgaiorio. 


Not, though our pace was speedy, did my gentle 
Father forbear (from speaking), but said : *• Let looae 
thy bow of speech which thou hast drawn up to the 
barb." Then I opened my moulh, with confid«nc«, and 
bcfpin ; " How can one Rrowlcan there where th<; need 
of nourishment applies nol?" 

Benvemito obsei^-es that it was high lime that Dante 
put this question, for all that had been said in Hell and 
Purgatory of such wonderful varieties of punishment, 
n'ould seem to be worth nothin};, unless it were in some 
way made clear that the soul, when separated from the 
body, could by natural means be aflfcclcd by hunger, 
thir&t, or any other liability to suffering. 

Virgil, in answer to Dante, tries to give him some 
soil of idea of the subject in question, by an example 
taken from mythology, and with a natural simile: he 
then turns to Statius, and begs him to solve the pro- 
blem fully, and so satisfy Dante's craving for explana- 

—'* !>c t' ammenUHi come Meleagro * 

•ifttoiero .■ Melctgtr was said to have been the son of 
.V.ntii*, kine n( Calydon, and Atthxa. At his birth Ihe Vnica 
predicted: Uolbo, thftt he vrnutct be brxvc ; LachetiH, that he 
would be Blronj;; and AtropOH that hi» life would last a» long aa 
a log, thrown upon the Arc at the moment of hii birth, remained 
unconsumcd. As>»oon a^.Ihe Fates had departed, Ahlitca snatched 
the brand (mm the fire, and prc*er\cd it carefulK'. (See Ovid. A/cJ, 
viii, :t6o-j46.; Mfkager diiitineuishcd himself in the Argonautic 
expedition, and afterwards slew tne wild boar of Calydon ; hui a dis- 
pute having arisen bctvcen himself and his two uncles, Plcxippm 
and ToKcui, AlthvaS brothers, for ihi' piMsea.iion of it, he slew 
Ihem both. Althara, enraged at the slaughter ol her brothers, 
threw the fatal log on the Hrc, and Mclcagcr peri»hcd a> it eon- 
(umciL Itcnvcnutn sayn that Alth»a ii nut Rguraliicty«ry 
mother who bear* a cKild, at whotvc birth the planei», accordini; 
to Ihe astrologers, at nnce prescribe the allotted period of his life. 
The firebrand 19 a fipurc for the natural caloric of the body, and, 
as lonfC a> it lasts, hfe endure*. Bcnvenuto add* that many per- 
aont had often a»kcd htm what poKMble connection there wat 


Readings on the Purgatorio. Canio xxv. 

Si consumd al coDsumard' un stiiio^* 
Non fora,t"— di»»c,— "quc»to ■ tt slftgro:} 
E se pcnas&si come al voetro guuzo 


between th« history of Mclcager, and the propoMtlon wc arc 
considcrinK ; AntI that lie hat! always replied trut no hiBtor>- could 
be more to the purpoee; for, as Mclesgcr graduAlIy wiMed away 
accnrilinK to the wttntin); of the (iiebrand, >o hcie did the spirit! 
in the Sixth Cornice become lean in proportion to the nmount of 
perfume from the fruit-lTcc, and the water iricklinKovertlabranches. 
And, as Mclcager wa» consumed from an extrinsic cauK, that tit. 
the inHuenceof the planets, so here iJo the spirits become emaciated 
from an cictriniiic cause, namely, by the will of God. Some how- 
ever have argued that the death of Mcleaf^cr vthh brought about by 
magicart; and this would be much to the purpose, for then he 
argues a miiiori. as Augustine righlly docs in his book De CtviUU 
Dti, where he Kaysi, that if necromancers are able to imprison the 
spirit in an aerial body, how much more can the Power of God 
confine the soul in corporeal fire. " And mark," conlinuci 
Benvcnuto, " that this comparison sceraa to be very much to the 
point; for, as an image nithoui substance roovea in a mirror 
which had suhKiance, %o the unnubslantial soul is tormented in 
substantial air; and. an the reflection comes from without, m> 
auflerinK or jirawer of feeling comes into the soul from wtlhoui," 
*U*sio: Compare Inf. liii, 40-41: — 

" Come d un sii«o vcrdc, chc arao aia 

Dair un dc' capj. che dall' altro geme, 

R cigola per vento che va via." 
ffora: foisAnblie, compare Purg. vi, 90:— 

" Sena' e«so fora la verKogna tneno." 
And Par. iti, yy75- — 

''Se disiBBsimo esser pi& supeme, 

Foran discordi ti nostri distri 

l>al volcr di colui chc qui ne ccrnc," 
eI {Aiul. CWt, p. 475, 5 14 of the chapter Dtlf imffrfitlo 
4ivo) : " I Latini in xece di eutiu, tsui, tuet, uukI, disuro 
fOTim,fam,jwtt,Jorcn.t (da /utrtm o furtm, etc. dall' antico fue). 
Quindi noi, to fori, tu fort, etc., per io Mm, tu mttti, etc. . . , 
PoBcia si terminaronn in a, io fora, l» fora, eelifbra, ceUint fvranc, 
per uniformitft di cadenza con iariu, uriauo. NnnniKci goes on 
to say thai the examples of thia use are numberless, and that 
there in hardly a single writer of the f>rimo ittolo Jella J>N/,'iin, with 
wham this termination in a is not found. 

I ig*v : " Si agro, cioi si tnalagevele, chc tu nan vedessl come 
aia pouibik." (IJuli.) Th« Grau Oisiwario, s.v. ttgrtff^ 6, in- 
lcrpt«t« tkgro in this %'cry passage as matagtveUf Jifficilt. 

Canto xx^'. Readings on Ifu Purgalerio. 335 

Gui'fA* cicntro alto «pecchio vostra image, 
CiA the par duro fi parrebbc virxo ; f 
M» perch* dtniro a tuo vokr t' uda);e,t 

Ecco qui Stazio, ed io lui chiama e prego, 

Che tia or aanaior d«lle toe piage." — 30 

" ir thou wouldst cail to mind," said he, " how M«- 
leager wasted away during the wasting of a firebrand, 
thi» would not be to thee so difficuh : And if thou 
wouldst think how, at every vibration on your purl, 
your imaye also vihrtttCH within the mirror, that which 
Mcms hard would appear to th«c cssy {lit. soft) ; but 
in order that thou mayesl penetrate into this mntter 
to thy heart's content, behold, here is Stalius, and I 
call to him, and beg him, to be now the healer of thy 

That is. " by solving thy doubts," for, as Scartazzini 
remarks, doubts arc the wounds of the soul, which arc 
never healed, until the truth be established. 

Benvcnuto says that it has puzzled many why Virgil 
should leave this question to be solved by Statius. 
He thinks it is because Virgil was a fuliower of Plato, 

^Cuiita : " II corpo aerco dcUc anime puTRknti i \o spccchio di 
esse anirae. Or come lo gpecchio rappre&cnta fedelmente ogni 
moto di cht vi «i specchin, qohi iI corpn nereo ritrae al di fuori i 
moli e 1e sofTcrenze dcIl' ftniniH." (ScarlnziinL) 

t vi'ico .- According to Blanc. i% a word of uncertain origin, bill 
implies whatever is the opposite of hard. Biagi'^li : " Vuxk, diectii 
del poffli i quati. Kiuicnendo a maturiti, k' amcnolhxcono, e Jnfint 
«i fanno nuzzi (i^. over-ripe. " l'iixi> ii here in opposition to 
tirro(l. i,|). Unripe fruii ii naturally hard, and agr^, at, wc said 
above, stands for dtgieiU. In the name way ripe fruit being sofl, 
vitxo ttandii for /oriJe. Andreoli comments: "vizto, cioi mollc, 
facile a penctrar l' intcllelto," 

J (' ^iagt : Early form for (i adagi. See Nannucci on thii 
(,Anal. Cnl. p. 61 el te^.), and compare Pure- '^\ S> '■ "Tu 
m' appaghc." Ailagi^rii primarily means, "In make onesiif 
comfofuole, to put oneself at Krcatcr eaac than before. " The 
Cwn DixUmario (§ 3) interprets this paniciilar passage: 
" Peoctrare nel \-erD, e quivi adasianu conientato i»i denideni." 


Rtudings on ttit Pw^atorio. Canto '' 

and held thai souls were created from Eternity, and 
descended from (he ptnncts into mortal bodies, and 
after death returned to their planets : but that, as such 
ideas were repugnant to Christianity, Uante makes 
Virgil call upon Statius, who was a Christian poet, and 
who touches on these subjects in accordance with 
philoxophy and faith. Bcside<). Slatius is at this time 
cpialiHed for Paradise, having completed his purgation, 
and may be ^iupposed to know moi'c of these matteru. 
than Virgil, who will soon have to return to Limbo. 

Division II. — Statius begins by assuring Vir;gi1, 
so many words, that he is so much in the habit of 
taking ever>' word of his as a precept, that he must 
perforce do whatever Virgil asks him. He then turns 
to Dante, and, with much kindness of manner, tells 
him that he will clear away his doubts, if Dante 
yield him his attention. 

— "Selx vvduti eterna * rII disl«Ku." *— 
RispoHc Siniio,— " U dove tuiie, 
Discolpi mt non polert' io Ur ncga" J— 

*tMdmta tUnut: TfiMino paraphnucs this: " S« gli apit 
cii the si vedc in qucsti luugni etcmi — i ilato t' aj^giiinio 
d) ctcma alia vcduU cziandio del PurKatono, pcrocclii cfccnic 
ekso pure daltc viccndc del tempo, ed appartcncnie in tuiln 
air elerna vita—" etc. The meaning o( cm«I<i tf/raa is "the 
untccn ihinga or Gix).' It ia not oiHv the in)'Stcr>- of genera- 
tion th*l StaliuK ik gmng to explain, but tnyMcry or m^ttcrict, 
a tpccial Dtodification of Kcncralion, to suit the impalpable 
form» of the spinla in the rcponi of the dead. Valuta it the 
reading of the larcc majority of MSS., but itndHta is not an 
nncammon rudini;. and. iT 'dunt«d. the passage would sij^nif^; 
"If lunfald lohim the pcnnllv imposed by the Eternal God on 
the aouls that are bein^ purf;c(l." 

^dit,Ugo: Srarta/xitii says this word concsponda to the Latin 

u/gt: According to the Gran Diiioiiana this is a subtlan^ 
mtga^ione, il aegttrt, like tl ' " " ~ 

Compare in/. Mvi, 65-67 :— 

lii'c = K^gamtnlo, mtga^ione, il aegttrt, like the Latin iNfi 
uocd by <.KC[o. 

Canto XXV. Readings en the Purgatorio. 337 

Poi colninci^^— " Se Ic parole mic, 

Pi^lio,' la mcntc tuft guarila e ricove^ ♦ 35 

I.umc ti Ficno ul come che tu die. J 

" If I reveal to him these secrets of Kternity,'* feplied 
Statius, "here where thou urt present, let my excul- 
pation be that 1 cannot say thee nay." Then he 
began: "My Son, if thy mind will consider as n-cll 
as receive my words, they will be u light to thee for 
the How that thou sayest. 

That is to say: " My words will fully explain thy diffi- 
culty, and answer thy question : ' How can one grow 
lean there where the need of nourishment applies 

Statius now proceeds to develop the theory of genera- 
tion and the formation of the body with the vegetative 
and f>ensltive soul. And the words, which Dante here 
pals into his mouth, may be found also in the Convivio, 
iv, 21. § 

" M&cBifo, Msai ten preso 
E riprcgo, chc it pTc%o vagtia mille, 
Che non mi facci dell" attender nego." 
And Purg. xvii, 59-Co: — 

" Chc quale aapctlit ptcgo, c 1' uopo vedc, 
M«1ii;tiarnci>te ^i a'l mcttc ul nc);o." 
* Figlio : Ucnvcnuto remarks that Statius would say: "O 
Son, who hsjtt iiMt f^ithers litre piesrenl, Virgil and myself. ' 

iguania t rUfi/t: Compare Prov. ii, 1-5: "My son, if ihou 
wil( receive my word*, and ludc my comm»ndincnt« with iJii-e 
. . , then shall thou understand liie fear or the Lord, and 
the Imowlcdgc of God." 

Idit ba Jici, from which when the c wai omitted was ob- 
tained Jii. Nannucei (.Anjl. C'rif. p. 570, S i&) *Ays that by ihe 
tetminalion in t, which wai formerly f^iven to the itecond pcnon 
•jngular of the indicative prcMnt, the word dii was altered in 
liit. He Kivca uvcral illuvtraiinns of this from early writers. 

Sit will be well before studying the speech u( Statius, to 
read the whole uf chapter 21 of Conr. iv, and compare 
Dante's own word* there with what he uiys here. Varchi (Lt- 
_^ timi till Danlt, Pircnic, it)4i, Ltt. 1 } admires the dissertation in 



3j8 Readings on the Purgatwia. Canto xxv. 

I Sanguc pcrfctto,* chc raai non si bcve 

llftir (Divelsic vcne, c M [im&nct 
<^uiLiii vlimvnto chc di mcnm kve, 
Prendv nd core n LuUc membra umane 40 

Vinutc informative, come qucllo { 
Ch' a. farai quelle per l« vene vane. 

this Canto so much, that he Days it is sufficient lo prove Dante to 
have been a physician, philosopher and theolagian of the highest 
order: "I not only conlcu., but I nwear, that as many tiirtci^ fts 
I have read it, which day und ni)-hl are more than a thouaand, 
iny wonder and a.stoniahmcnl have alwuyii increased, seeming 
every time to find therein new beauties and new instruction, 
snd conitequently ncv difficullivs." The aubjeci i» alto dis- 
euHHvd by St. Thomji!! Aquinas {Summ. ThtoL i, qu. c. xii, art. 3, 
Dt prapagiiliime hvinina ijuaiiliitu itii (or put], but Scartnz/int 
•ayi that above all the treatise of Ariatotk l£>r Gen. Animai. 
lib. t, ch. 19) Hhould be studied. See alno the appendix of Ton- 
mas^n at the end of hit; Commi-ntary on this Canto. 

*Saneue fitr/ttlc : "StatiuB incipicndo dicil, <]uod in nobis 
quidnm RanguiH pctfcctus crcatiir qui non iipdirgitur nee bibiiur 
ft venis, ut aliuti !liln^ui^ tubeuH, ttcd, ul vinum non bibituni ct 
cibus non cometttus a corde clcvatur dc mensa, tdett dc xlo- 
tnacho. sive cpate. Qui perfcctus sanguis est albus propter 
majorcm dccoctinncm, ijucm »anRuincm, idcst spcrmn, natura 
providit propter generaltoncm primo ; sccuncluin propter cjua 
numidum ad rctistcndum ealuri naturali nosti'o. Quvd spurma 
■piiilualcm quandam vinutcm infomiAtivam capii ad nor^lram 
humanuin emKtem in corde aj^enttc, ut rncnii fabri nd cultcDutn 
ante ejuBconfectionem el fornrtan) " (Fietro di Dante.) 

fi ti rimant : Varchi \cp. cit. p, J9) writes : " When the vM-'ina 
have sucked up a sufficient qusnliiy of nouriahmcnt to rcrtorc 
the uatte of the bndy, tlicy do not suck up any more, jukl a* a 
modest and temperate man. after catinE what is nccG«utrj', leaves 
the remainder of htn food, and thercfurc the expreviion e ji 
wijuant jtasi aHmntto, thai is, rcmoini over and above junt like 
fiiod. . . ." (and p. 4J): " Uanie aogKiunsc quelle parole, Jl 
scnlimcnto dellc quali pare a me chc tis: come il sangue, il 
quale non h diventalo aperma, ha virti^ dal more di diventar 
tuttc le membra, come si vcdc nel nutrimcnto ; perchi I' oMia 
convcrtono il sunfjue in oata, Ic venc in vcne, la came in came, 
e di tutti gli ftltri ncl mcdctimo modo; cosi poichi t diven* 
tato iperma, ha virlfl di fare lutli i mcmbri, opcrando in virtil 

\tomt qtalh : The mcantni; i« not "like that." C'owu quMo 
is a reguiRT Italian idiom signifying ** being auch llial," or 


ReaJinffs on Ihe Purgalorio. 

Perfect ((-^, Ihe purest essence of the) blood, which 
is never drunk up by the thirsty veins, and remains 
like (Kupcifluous) food which thou removcst from the 
table, acquires in the heart virtue informative (i.e. 
creative power) for all hiimitn members, ii» being that 

! blood) which run» [ne va] through the veins to Ik 
brined into thoae (members). 

I give the literal prose of tills from La Divina Comnudia 

v^liata in Prosa da Mario Forest. Flortttce. 1890 : " 11 

sangue pjli puroche nun e assoibito dalle vene comunquc 

a&soi'benti die sieno, c chc resta come un alimenlo 

superfluo che si to^Ue dalla tnensa, prendc nel cuorc 

virtu atta ad informare tutte le membra umane. tiundo 

queilo clu va p^r U vene a trasformarsi in esse membra." 

Benvenuto remarks upon the appropriateness of this 
comparison; for as, from that food set before a kinj; or 
lord, that which remains, and is carried from the tabic, 
\% as good as that which has been eaten, for it is of the 
same composition, so it is with the blood given to tile 
heart : for (hat which remains after a meal has been 
eaten, and the blood distributed through ihc veins, is as 
Rood as that which becomes nutrition [m alimentum). 

Statius continues his physiological description. 

Ancur dignto, xccndc nv' £ piii tiello 

Tacer che dire; e quindi po«cia gcme* 

"being itself the ihing th«t.'' ll correspond! eiaelly to the 
Latin n(/v/4 fill. There is a {>«i»6iikc in the In/trito (xii, jz, ^ 
where we find this idiom : — 

" lo vidi un' ampia foisa in arco tona, 

Cotne quelle {I'tiiie '•"'A) che tulto i] pinno Bbbraccta.'* 
Tlie GraH tJisioniirio uys ihal comt ifuttiu laj-t, Hircaa ujion the 
thtnj; already spoken 01, and quotes the two itt>uvc-in«ntioncd 
pataagcs in illuatration. 

*gimt: As wuh pointed oul in RtJidixK* <"■ 'A( lifrmo. vol. i, 
p. 4)9. footnote, ihc primary meaning of gtmtrt is to diitil ijrapa, 
etc. The puan^c in iiueaiion in ({uoled in the footnote on tlitto 
at tine ij of the present cuilo. 

y 3 


Readings on the Purgatono, Canlo 

Sopr' allrui &anguc in natural vjisello.* 
I*i s' iiccoglie 1' uno c I' altro insicmc, 

L' un dnpoRlo a (Milirc c 1' altro a fare.t 

Per 1o pcrfetto loco onde si {Kcme ; ] 
B giunto lui i comiocta ad opcraic. 

Cottf^Undo prima, e poi awiva 
Cift Che pet aua inateria fc* constare-lt 

Digested yet again (i^. still more purified), it dcscenda 
lo those vessels whereof it is more seemly to be silent 
than to speak {ad vata stmiHalia) ; and from these it 

*iuluMi vauUo: Compare Sl Tltomaa Aqulnaa, J>'hmm. TM. 
pan iii, qu. xxxii, art. ^ : " FoEinina ad eonccptiDncm nrolia mi 
teriam miniiitrat, vx (|ua naturalitcr corpu* proli* lormalur.' 
And 5umm. Thtol. pars iii, qu. XKxiii, art. I : "Ad rormattanem 
corporis ■ ■ ■ r«|uirebalur motua localia quo uinKuincK . . . 
ad locum Kcneraiioni cnnKruum pcrvcnirent." 

i L' UH ,1iiP«ilo a p,Um r f ttliro afafi: Compare St. Thomaa 
Aquinas, Milium. TkcoX, pan iii, qu. xxxii, art ^ : " In gcncralione 
ditUinKuiiuf opcratio af^entit ct patient)*. L'ndc rcUnquitur qa&d 
tola virtus activa lit «x parte maris, pacaio awtcm ex parte 

\ II /lYiwM .- The blood of the male, diipoaed to icive form to the 
human members, itsuca aa if expreucd fron) the bcari. Benvenuto 
thinliB it is from the heart, though aoine, he •aya, contend that it 
is from the brain. 

%g,\\Mfo Ui : ScartaiJtini haH no doubt of lui mcaninj! a lui, and 
having thissiKnifiCH(i»n:lhe hlnod of the male being conjoined to 
(minclcd witJ>) the blood of the fcmal):, etc, 

{]/(' causlitr< : Compare St. ThotnaK Aquinaa, SHmm. Tktol. 
pars iii, qu. xxxiii, art. i : " Formalio corporis fit per pvtcntiam 
KciKraiivam, non ejuH qui ccncratur, MctI ipsiuK gcnerantis ei 
aetnine, in quo opcratur vis lormatira ab anima palris derivata.'' 
And pan iii, qu. asxii, art. 4 : " I'olcntia RrnerHliva in fwmtna cat 
impemcta rc*pcctu poicntiz gcncrativic quic cat in marc. El 
idco sicut ill artibus ars inferior diaponit matcriam, ara autcni 
superior inducil fonnam, ita cliam virtus ^ncrativa fumrn, 
preparat matcriam. virtus autem actlva mnria formal mnlcna 
praparatam.'' Itcnvenuto sayn of /<' tontlan : " id eitl, tcinanc 
ptr tiiu niaUra, scilicet Han^uincm menatrnum, quod fecit con 
aiaterc ibi pro sua materia, m quam imprimit luam formaro : et 
bciK dicit: nam communitcr non duit sanjtuia hic a molicre 
post imprcKnatiunem ; undir habenl ialod commune aignum 
eonccptionia : el non vult aliud diccrc niai quad generatur anima 
vegelativa in foilu qnalia cat in arboribua." 


Canto XXV. Readingi on the Purgalorio. 




afterwards trickles upon another's blood in the natural 
veBHel {i.f. in the matrix). Therein the one and the 
other iiie«t together, the one {the blood of the female) 
disposed to be passive, and the other (that of the 
male] to be active, by reason of the perfection of the 
locality (the hcan) from which it flowed; and (the 
male Wood) being tonjoinctl to it (the female lilood) 
bcg^ins its opcmtion (of forming the embr)'o), lirsl by 
coacuJation (i.e. tiirnin); the blood into flesh), and 
then Rives life to that which it had made to take 
consistence as substance necessar}' for its o{>criition. 

After speaking of the generation of the vegetative soul, 
Statius touches upon the generation of the sensitive 
soul, both of which arc evolved out of the potentiality of 
substance, and is not brought in fFom without, as is the 
rational mjuI. about which he speaks farther on. He 
concludes this portion of his dissertation by emphasis- 
ing the assertion that the vivifying power for the form- 
ation of the members of the cmbi'>'o springs from the 
heart of Ihu male parent. 

Anima fatta la virtute attiva,* 

iKit dttim : Compare St. Thomas Aquinas, Summ. TknL 
pit* I, 1)0- cxviti, arl. i : "Quia KcneranK cki simile ^encralo, 
nccesHc est qu&cl naturalitrr tnm aniina HcnHitiva, quAm aliic hujui- 
mixli fornix producantur in cbhc ah aliquibuscorpoixlibusagcnii- 
bus IransmuUntibtis matcriaiii dc polcniiji in aclum per ali^uam 
virtulcm lorporcani (ju* eal in titv ... Ex animii t:encrnnti3 
derivatur quai-dam virlus activa ad ipsum semen animabs, vel 
planlJ!. ... In animalibuH perfecliK. qux generantur ex 
coilu, v!rtus aciiva «l in scmine maris; iDalcris autcm TcctAs chi 
illud, quMl ministratur a fcmina ; in qua quidem materia staltm 
i principJD c»t nnima ve};i:tabill9, non quidcm sccundtini actum 
secundum, scd secundum actum primum, sicut anima sensitiva 
eU in darmicntibut; cfim autcm incipil Attr.)hcrc alimcntum, 
tunc jam aclii operatur. HujuKmn<li igilui materia iranamuta- 
tUT h virtute <\uiK cut in icminc mans, (luounque perducatur in 
actum animiC scniitivK, . , . Postquam autcm per virtulcm 
principii activi quod erat in seniine, prnducta est aniina xenai- 
ttva in (cncrato qujntiim ad aliquam iiaftcm princiiwtcm, tunc 

343 Readings on the Purgatorio- Canto xxv. 

Qua] 6' una. pianta,* in lanto dtfTerenIc, 

Che qucH' i in via c quclU i ^A a riva. 
Tanto opra poi chc pL xi move c scntc,t 

Cono (unt;o marino; cd indi imprcndc 

Ad organar le pOMc onA' i ocincntc. 
Or Hi apicga, figliuolo, or si distcndc 

jam ilia anima sensitiva prolis incipit ojieraH ad camplerncnlu 
proprii coipons per modum nulritionit el auRtncnli." 

* Qual d' unti piaiila : Scartai/ini naya that it is ncrdlcK^ 
point out that Dante in thia passage confonnK to the doctrin 
of St. Vhomat Aqutnati. and that it will be well to ferer to what 
St. Thomaa *ay* on the nucccaaion of the souIh — the vegetative, 
the »cnsitivc, and the intellectual, in the rormation of man. 
See I- (. pars i, <|u. <;Kviii, art. 2 : " Anima prxcxistlt in cmbr>'one, 
& printipio quidcm nutiiiiva. poKtmodum xutem sen»itiva, rt 
tandem intellecttva- Oiciini ergo qutdim, qi»M Mpra animam 
vcKciabilcin qu« ptim& ineiai, Hupcrvcnii alia anlmo. qua; eM 
scnEiiiva: supra jllamiterum alia, quKcnt intcllcctiva. V.t sic huni 
in hominc ircit animK aiiarum una est in poicntia ad aliain. quod 
iiupra impiobatuin cM [cornpare Par/, iv. 1 ti wi^.]. El irtco alii 
dicunt aujid ilia cadcm anima, quv primft fuil vegctaliva tanliim, 
postmnaum per actionem virtuliB qua: c»l in seminc, perdiictlur 
ad hoc ut ip^a cadcm ftal ■cmitivs, cC tandem ad hoe ut tpxa 
cadcm hat intcllcctiva, nun quidctn pci nrtutcm activam »cminis, 
scdprr vinutemxupi-rioriii agentiK,Kcilkel Dei tJeforisillustranlt« 
. . . Sed hflc stare non [wtest. . . . Et idco dicendum 
quAd ciim Rcncralio uniu> semper sit comiptio allcriub, necei' 
CM diccrc, qudd lam in hominc, quJtm in animalibvv altis, quan 
pcifcciior lorma ndvcnit. fit comiptio prions; ita lamen qu' 
M-qucns forma habet quidquid habcbat prima, ct adhuc amplitis; 
ct ate per multai c'ncratiAnes et corruptionei pcrvcnituf ad 
ullimnm (ormain subnlanlialcni tam in hnmine quftm in aliia 
animulibus. Bi hoc ad scn?ium appiaret in animalibus ex putrc- 
faciitme cencralis. Sic i^itur diccndum est, qu&d anima 
intellrttiva crcaiur i Deo in fine gcncrationii humanic, qua 
Biraul eat et tentitiva ct nutritiva, carraplis fortnia pr- 

t(J mope e ieilftCi'iiu fungi) nMrine : Spontaneous movement a 
fcctinKire tsM-nlial characteristics of animal life, to which Stat 
cava the fccliiB arrive*. "Cettc vie. vec'tale d'alwtd, n-aih pi 
ICrcstive, tc dcvdoppc par M>n proprc excrci»- ; ellc fait pas 
l'nf);aniKine dc t'eiat ile plante it celui de inophvic, pQur parvc 
cnxuile i, la complilc animalili." Ocarvam {tiantt il U Fk" 
CalkaL p. iii^. 



lie- I 

Csnto XXV. RtaJings on the Purgaloric. ^3 

La nnii ch' i dsl cor del Keneiant«, 

Ovc natura h tutic mctnbia intendt : 60 

The active virtue (the male) havini: become a. soul, as 
that of a plant, but thus much diffcrinR ffotn it. that 
this one {the human life) is on\y on (he way (i.e. Has 
only reached the fiist stage), and that ore (the plant) 
has already itirived (i^. has reached perfection), it 
then workn ho much that already it moves and feels, 
as does a Nea-fungus : nnd after that it undertakes to 
organize the |>owerR of which it is the germ. My 
Son, the power which is (derived) from the heart of 
the bcjictter, at one time dilates, and at another time 
extends itself, in which (heart) Kiiiurc is intent on 
(forming) all the members. 

Both Bcnvenuto and Taltcc da Kicaltlune translate the 
last lines dlfTerenily from the above. 

• Now it is explained to ilice, now it is declared or 
made clear to thee, my son, from what has been said 
before, that nature has given so much power to the 
heart, that it is able to give forth that blood from which 
all the members are formed." 

Dn'isioit 111. — In this next pari of (he Canto, Statius 
explains how the embryo, from being a mere animal, 
becumes endowed with a rational soul. 

Dean Piumptre observes that, in treating; this dtflfi* 
cult subject, Dante shows that he rejected the theory 
of Traducianism as taught by Avcrrhoes, TertuUian 
and others, who maintained thai the human soul is 
generated at the same time ai> the body. Dante evi- 
dently adopted the theory of Crcationism, and closely 
followed the teaching of St. Thomas Aquinas and the 
media-val theologians, who held that the i^lional soul 
comes directly from (tod, Who, as soon as the organism 
of the brain ha» reached its full development, breathes 



Readings on the Pvrgatorto, Canto XXv. 

into it a di\'inc afflatus, and this attracts to it the 
principle of activity, with which it in its turn is brought 
Id contact, when it unites with the embr>'o, and thus 
becomes a living soul, by the three acts of plant life, 
animal \'\(e, and rational life. 

MscQinc d' nniinal* divcnga FaDtc.t 

Xon vedi (ij ancor: quest' i Ul punto 

*aniiiMi, i.e. the human fttltu before God has endowed it with a 
raliondl soul. Compare Conv. iv, 7, II. 138-151; "Chi siccomc 
dice il Filosofo, ncl Kcondo dtW AHimu, Ic polcnic dclt' Bnim> 
sunno Hopra kc, come li Stgun. dello quadraneolo sta sopra lo 
Irjjingolo, e lo pentagons sta sopra lo quaarangolo : cost la 
senxitiva sta aopru U vegctativa, e U inldlctliva stn sopra la 
KcnfiilivB. Dunqiic, come Icvando I' ultimo canto del ncntaeono, 
rimanc quadrjiri^olo c non pjil pcntap;ona ; cosi Icvando I' tJtima 
poicnza dell' nntma, c'loi la rni;ii>nc, non rimanc piCl uomo, ma 
cosa con anims scnsiliva BoUm«nlc, cioi tinimaU bnto." The 
simile i« taken from .\riKtotIe, tie Anima. ii, 3: — 

" oil yhp Afiit yurroi fuuv xai HvBptanoi." 

+/«»t(f, according lo Ciiobcrti, is " uomo, animal che piiria, 
distlntivo dell' uomo, come spicga Ugo Foscolo." Toromaaio 
(one of the authors uf the Gtait Dixtotiario) derivea it from the 
Latin /an', "parlare c r«j;ionare." Hence {says Cciiiti, BrtUm, 
vol. ii, p. 4sa) is derived infantt, "one that cannot talk." He 
then adds, "Or il parlare £ proprielit di irola ra^ione, da chc il 
parlarc umano rcca in modo astratto c gcncralc Ic idee dc' puli- 
colari; la qunl iiperaj'iane non piift lanu, se non da animal 
raglonevolc : di che vcgKianiu ie beslic, cziandio domeslichc, vhe 
uifirono milioni di voltcT" uomo a patlare, non imprcscro mai luo 
linguaggio." In Conv. \\\, 7, II. lOo-iac, L^antc says a« much: 
" E da napcre, chc nolamcntc I' Uomo intra i;li animali pada, c 
lia rcggimenti c ntti che si dicono raiionali. Dcroccht cgti solo in 
%ik ha raKionc, el te<].'' Compare also Dt Kh». Eloq. i, 3 and 4: 
"Cum igitur homo non naturae instinctu aed raiionc movcatur 
. , . oponuit Kcnus humanum ad commumcandum inter »c con- 
ccptioncs suhh aliquod rationale siKnum ei unsualc habere . . . 
hoc *i|;niim cl ip&um aubjcctum nobile dc quo loquimur: natura 
uinmtlt quidem, in quantum sonus cat ; ralionaU veto, in quantum 
aliquid sitjniricarc vidciur ad placitum. Soli homini datain (uit 
III loquerctur, ut ex prKmiiwia manil'cMum ci>l." Lombardi sunw 
up these ideas: "B&sendo il psflarc una manitcMa/ionc del- 
r inlernu raKiniiarc, pui> anche per <iue>to riguartto prenderei il 
l^arlarv per la *lcsaa ra^ione, c dirw/<i«/( invccc di ragioncvol«." 

Canto XXV. Readingt on lite Purgahrio. 345 

Che piti xavio di te* fe' gti errante; 
SI chc, per aua dattrins, fc' disgiunto 

Oall'nntma il possibile intclletto.! 69 

Pcrchi da lui non vide orcano Kssunto. 

But, how from animal it becomes raiional {til. en- 
dowed with Kpeech.) thou c^nsl not yet Oincern, for 
this is the [>oint ttial tuis Hlrt^dy m*ie one 
(Averro£s) more learned thun thou to err so that 

*^jil tavio di U: This is scncrAtly considered to rcrer to 
AveriDCK, who U tepresenled hy Dante in (hit pnMage as re- 
^artlin^ the liUtlUtlui Pmubilii an one and indivisible, and a 
perfectly distinct entity frum the soul. It was the liitilltcim 
•igfi**, or active intellect, which Avcrrolipi so regarded. Avetroeft 
in hia Commentary on Arittnllc (/)r Anima, iii, ,|, 5) Ixys dnwn 
two inlclleclual ptincipivs (says Scflrtaz^fini, EdQ t8^), the one 
puiwivc. the cither active. The InltUe^lus Agins i» impersonal, 
eternal, and distinct from the indiviilual, who ncvclthclesi partici* 
pam in it. The pusitive intcllccc is trttn^itory itnil dependent upon 
the attive. Thin Inttcr is consequently only conjoined to the 
inditidusi as regards form, but as regards esHcnce ia separated 
from htm. and is one and indivisible for all men. 'I'hc riis- 
linetive character of the lnUi!t\lus PcaihilU, the only immor- 
tal one «( the two, beinK thus de»tro\-vd, it would follow that 
after death there would only be left to the souls the unity of the 
intellect, and eternal rewarda am! puniihmenti could not tsilce 
place. Scartai.iin) adds that this theory of Avciroiia was mostly 
fiercely oppvacd by St. Thomas Aquin^H in ticveral pasoaj^ea. 
See kIso [>r. Moore, StiitlUs in DhhU, Q:d'ord, 1896, ]>)>. 114, 115. 

f fvisibik inlMtIv : "Nullum intcllcctuh intclliKil, nui imtlUclHa 
fitiaibilu, i|iiia n^^ns non intclligil." (Dunn Scntus, in iv, disl. 
xlv, qu. I.) llaiiicllo's definition of it is lucid; ''Chiainaai qucslo 
inlelletio pQuibiie, per csjicr in potenza d' infondcrsi in luttc le 
nature ditxrac dc gli huomeni, et operar in rssi la virlii nua." 
Compare alan St- T'homui .\quinan, Summ. Thaih p. i, qu. Ixxix, 
art. 10: "Quandoquv cnim ponunt quatuor inlctlcL'tus, sciliLcl 
iotellcclum aKentcm, poHmfailctn, ct in habilu, el adcptum ; qunrum 
quatuor intcUcctiis ager*. cl pn«sibtli» siint divcrsiE polentiic, sicut 
Ct in omnibut CM alia potenlia acliva ct alia pastitva; alia vcr6 
tria clistinKuuntur secundum trcs aialus intcllcctOs posMbilis ; <)ui 
quandoque eat in potentia tantCiin. ct ^ic dicilur possibilis; 
quandoque aulem in actu primo, qui est acicnlia cl sic dicilur 
intellectus in habilu ; quandoque autcin in aclu sccundo qui est 
considerure, ct aic diutur intcllectu* tn actu, nivc iniellcctua 
adept UB." 


Reitdings on the Purgatmc Canlo xx\'. 

in his teaching he separated the potential intellect 
from ihc Boul, because he could sec no organ appro- 
priated by it (i-c. the possible intellect). 

Averroes did not see in the human body any organ 
specially assi^cd to Ihc intellect, as arc the cars for 
hearing, the eyes for seeing, and so on with the other 

Ozanam (Le Purgaloire dc Dante, payc 418), writes: 
"Averroes en cummcntant Aristote s'efforcc d'ctablir 
que rintclkcl qu' Aristote appclle possible est une 
substance s^par^e du corps quant A I'etre, et qui lui 
est unie quant a la rorme, et de plus que Tintellcct 
possible est unique pour tous. Or, etant d^truite la 
divcrsil<^ d'intelicct possible qui est scul immoriet, il 
s'cnsuit qu'.ipri^s la mort il ne rcste ricn dcs Ames 
humaines que I'unitc dc t'intellcct, ct ainsi on »up- 
prime les pcincs ut les ricompcnses. Albert le Grand 
ajoute que, disiinguant Vkmt sensible de I'Amc intel- 
lectuellc, les p^ripateticiens font naitre la premiere du 
sang du pei'e : nials I'anie intellcctuelle, ils la con- 
9oivent separSe et rayonnanl sur I'Sme sensible come 
ic soleil sur Ic milieu transparent, ct dc mftme que si 
Ton 6tc les objets illumini-s, il nc restc que la lumicre 
du soleil, dc meme, les hommes pertssant, il ne reste 
qu'une seule inlellifience perpdtuelle et imp^rissable." 
Compare also Kenan, Averroes et I'AverroisrHe, Paris, 

1S61, p. 122. 

In the language of the Schools, the potential intel- 
lect is the faculty which receives impressions through 
the senses, and furms fi-om them pictures or phantas* 
mata in the mind. The active intellect draws from 
these pictures various ideas, notions and conclusions. 
The two represent the Understanding and the Keason. 

Canto XXV. Readings on the Purgatorio. 


Bcnvcnuto says ihat, after having thus condemned 
the opinions of Averrocs about the rational soul, he 
goes on to give the true opinion of the Catholic Church, 
namely, that the soul is given by the First Giver, God, 
and he begs Dante to take in fully and to retain the 
(rue doctrine. 

Apri * alia verili che vicne il petto, 

E «a|)pi chc, •) (onto come al feto 

L' articular del cerehroft perlcito.t 
Lo Motor primo J u lui *i vnlgc licto JJ 70 

Sopra tantn arte di natura, e apifa 

SpifitD nuovo di virtii r<plelo,I| 

* Apr i, et »:<[.: Compare fn/. xxiv, 143:— 
"Apri gli orecchi al mio annunzto." 
And Par. v, 40, ^t : — 

"Apri la mcnte a quel ch' io li pale«o, 
E fcrmalvi cntio." 
f I,' urtKuiar dtl nnbro t fti/ttlo : " Compititi gli organi cd 
inKejcni del cercbro, e preparata la f<inle viva dei;li apirili, a 
potcn^iata pel loro iiiAuftso ogni tttiivitii dc' »«ntimcnti, i ac- 
concia peHetlamenle la aede all' aniina ra|;ioncvolc." Ccusri 
(BtUtttf, vol. ii, pp. 45i, 453). 

\Uotor prima: "(ilnria primi Motoria, qui Dcus cat," etc. 
(Oanlc, Bp. x. J ao.) " Et quum ccxlum totum unico molu 
liciligcl pTimi mubilis, et unieo molote, ijui Deu» (Hi, rcgulcliir 
rn amnibua suin partibua," etc {De .Vfon. i, ix, II. lo-ij.) And 
Pur. axxiii, 145:— 

'■ I.' amnr che move il sole c C altrc »tcllc." 
Compare St. Thorn. Aquin. Summ. Tktttl. pan. i, qu. cv, an. t. 
" Deui c>l niovcns non motum. . . . VNrtux Driini motoris est 
vintiH infinite." S>:artax^ini atalca that it i« from thia paaaa^c 
tbat Uante took the exprcKHion Motor pnmv. 
$ tuto : Compare Ptrg- Kvi, 8S>9o ; 

"L' aniina «em^ie«tla, che u nulla, 

Salvci che, motAa da licto fattnre, 
Voloiitiei toma a ctA che U lra*itulla," 
and Pintm civ, 31 : " Tbc Lord shall rejoice in Hia worlu." 

||5^iri/u Hitovo lii virtA npielo : Some iraniUlc vtrti " pow^r," 
■ome "potencies," some "virtue." I do not pretend to way 
which is be«l. On this paiiaaKt^. Landino writco: "Adunquc 
quando tulli |;li oritani che tiervona al molo c al seriM) aono 
pcrtccti, allora Iddio infondc I' aniina rationale; come i dctto: 


Rtadings oh the Purgatorio. Canto xxv. 

Che cid chc trova attivo quivi tira 

In sua sustanzia, e (aasi on' alma sola,* 
Chc vivc c sentc, c st in si rigira.t 



la quite Dante cMama spirito nuovo. percM non h di qinlta 
^ebe apirilo chc tniova nel corpA; ma. t cokb nuova; ci) ha 
peifvclionc di virift. avendo la ragionc e lo intdletlo.*' 

*wAt .- Ce»ari cannot tcsitain his adniiration (or this pa». 
Mgc: ■■ Magnjfica parlicolaiiz/azionc, e potcntemcntc dipinta! 
1.' anima trae a fti quelle due vite, e qituu in si assorbenitule, 
ne torna un' anima chc ha vita, ncnso, c liberty.'' Compare 
St. Thomai Aquinas on this (Smiim. Thiol, part. I, qu. Ixxvi, art, 
,) : "Sic crjfo diccndum quod cndcm nufncro est anima in 
'inminc, scnbitiva ct intcllcciiva ct nuuitiva. . . . Friiia cmbhn 
habcl antmam quie »t x«nKitit>a Untilm: qui ablaU, advcnit 
pcrfectior anima, quie CM simul sensltiva ct intellectiva." See 
also i*"H'. iv. s,^'~ 

" B qucsio i conlra qucllo error, chc crcdc 
Chc un' anima aopr altra in noi s' acccnda." 

t si in if rigtra : Ccsan goe% on from hia comment on the 
preceding lire : " Questo credo eaaere, quel li in si rigira : che 
padmncKKia B-i mcdesima per vxriit propria, con picna sisnoria 
c coscicnza dc' euoi atti, ondc in se mcdcdima m riptcga. c da' 
pntpn concclti ne trae dccli ultri, c ai rifik aopra i mcdcHimi, c 
ntnrns in si mcdctima, giudicandocd approvando I' opera sua." 
Compare Dnethiuit {I'hil. Cons. lib. iii, i'oes. ix, 1$ rf uif.) : — 

" Quie [anima) ciim sects duo* molum Klomcravit in orbea. 
In seitset mlitiira meiil menlcmquc proluiidum 
Circuit ct simili convcrtit imagine cxlum." 
Scarta/^ini ^ays that, althouRh Bacthiu& is here speaking of the 
univer«al uoul^lhc sntil oi the wnrld, yel the cxpresaton la 
umtt rttlilHrit tnral might equally apply to the human and ra- 
tional soul, inasmuch sn the laltcr has, according to the I'laton- 
lata, a double conversion lo intellectual mailers and to licn&i- 
tivc ntiltcrs, i.t. that it rcsolvcx itself into two circlcK, one the 
extern*! and greater, formed of (he imclligible powera of the 
soul, the other inlemiLl and lesser, and contrary' to the first, 
formed from the knowledge that the icnsxi infoite into it, bv 
mcanA of urhich ihc soul revolves to the things of the world. 
And, because this mnvcmenl forms a double tirclc o( conversion, 
therefore the soul rcturne into itself: it being the property 
of (he circle to revolve upon itself, or as Aristotle C'Ayt- book 
viiii nayt, to unite both beginning and end- The Gran Diiia- 
nnrio inlcrprets Ihc pavsa^e ti in i^ rii^ini u> being cqui\'alent 
lo rififlUffi. and expreKsin^ the same idea as a passage in Plato 

(of which reference il omiltcd}. "aiffi al»tK^^t\n^^^•^ itfii alrrir." 

'anielln's and the Ullimo'i comment* on Ihe whole uf the above 

Canto XXV. Rtadingi on the Purgatorio. 


Open ihy breast to the truth which comes next, 
and know that, ax soon ns the Articulation of the hrain 
is perfected in the embryo, the pritnal Mover tuma 
to it, rejoicinK at such a masterpiece of Nature, and 
breathes into it a new-born spirit replete with virtue, 
which absorbs into its own substance whutcvcr it 
finds active in it (the embryo), and forms itscK into 
one single soul, which lives, and feels, and turns itself 
back upon itself. 

The new-bom rational soul draws in the vegetative 
and sensitive souls, and identifies them with its own 
substance and with itself, and then forms one single 
soul having three powers, the vegetative, the sensitive, 
and the intellectual. 

Benvcnuto remarks on si in si rigira, that perhaps 
the meaning is that the movement of Reason proceeds 
from the Creator, to the created thing; and thence 
from the created thing to the Creator as it were in a 
circle (circulariler) ; but the meaning of si in s'e rigira is 
probably simpler, namely, " is ulf-cottscioHS." Plants 
live, animals feel, but only man is self-conscious. 

By A choice simile, Statius shows the purity of the 
new-born soul. 

E perchi mtno ammiri la paroln,* 

Uuardail eulur t del sol chc si fa vino, 
Oiunto air umor cbc dalla vite cola. 

eighteen lines arc especially valuable; and Pictro di [Xante's on 
the u'hok speech of Statius should be studied. 

*iaparoU: Statius is here referring to what he autcd before, 

namely. Dial the new. born xpirit breathed into the fcelus by God 

sllmct^to itKeK whalcvcr in it is of an active nature, and forma 

one iingt« soul which i» gifted with ngonr, feeling and intcUi- 


bailor: On this, Venturi {Simii. Dant,, pp. 9, to, simil. 14) 
remarks: "Come il calor del »ole (dice Sta/in ul foeta. par- 
lando delU gencraxione d«l corpo umano) unito all' umor bc- 
queo dclla vitc In trasmuta in vino, co«l lo npirito crcato da Dio, 


ReaJiHgt en Ou Purgatorio. Canto nv. 

And that thou inayest the tems i^-onder at my speech. 
look at the hciit of the Sun, which gel* (urned into 
wine when combined with the juice that diatiln from 
the vine. 

Benvenuto rcmark& upon the beauty and appropriate* 
ness of this comparison ; for, as the Sun by its beat 
makcR the wine, whose results are either the beat or 
the worst, and to such an extent that some compare 
the nature of wine to the power of the gods, in like 
manner the Sun Eternal, in Mis beneficence, creates 
the mtional soul, whose deeds will be either the best 
or the worst. So tliat the nature of the soul ts almost 
divine, for it is as the result of Ihc eternal light, and 
is indeed, as Themistiiiii stays, nearly all things. 

Statius, having established the production of the 
rational soul, now explains its mode of existence after 
the death of the body, and how it is that aerial bodies 

c tpinito neir animk vcnsitivK, la trasmuta in anima JntcllctttvB. 
Minbilc t la propriety di qucsia sirnililudinc, qualunquc nc »i« 
il valorc scicniifico. 11 ccrmc ih silTaiiii imngine trovasi in piO 
poeli greci: e anco Cicerone ditse dell' uva \De Semcl. iv, 53): 
'quic et ftuc CO terra! et calote noli* au|cesc«nK, primo eat pern- 
ccrtui guitaiu, dclrtdc mftlurata dutccscil.' Sxppiamo poi d*l 
Mdijiilatti che il urin Ualtico pcns& c^scrc il vino un compotlo 
diuinorc cii\\icc{LttL Scmt. \). Ondcil KcdijtcUuQ Ditirambo, 
Bacro in Tcttaiui, v. ij-iS:— 

' Si bf 1 8n nguc i un rftxsio acceeo 

Di ijoci Sol, che in cieTvedeii:; 

E rimaic ai-vinto e preao 

Di piii grappoli Rtta retc' " 
Antondli (in Tommatio's CommenlJr>') writes: "II filotefo 
^ui conteinpU tl aole sotto 1' «ftpetto botaitico, in quanio cioi 
inAuiscc uiandcincnlc alia vita delle piantc, alia produzione 
de' fiori. alU mat urA:tionc dc' fruiti; e dice com n^irabiliitsima, 
pcTchft profonilamfnic vera." After rcicrrinc to the iiayini; of 
Galileo cited atrave, Anionclli remarks: " II Nmtro [i. r. Dante] 
ho colto con dirctta parola I* etemcnto chc i magf[iortncnte 
cfBcacc. DircMt, il Galitci qui csscrc il Pocta, Danlc lo actcn' 

Canto XXV. ReaJitigs on Ihc Pmgtitorio. 


can suffer from tcanncss. He first (tcscrtbeK by an- 
other poetical figure the separation of llic soul from 
the body. 

£ quando Lacbcsis * nan ha piQ lino, 

Solvcsi t dalU came, cd in viriutef 80 

Ne poru acco c I' umano c il divina. 

And when LachcsJs has (on her distaft) no more 
thread (i.<., when Man's life i& run out), il (the &oul) 
loosens itself from the flesh, and bears away latent 
within itself both the human (corporeal) and the divine 
(f.#. in the inteliectuul faculties). 

Tommasco explains this last line by saying that where- 
as the soul retains these corporeal and sensitive, us well 
as the spiritual or intellectual. faculties, virtually or poten- 
tially, the former will be actually reassumed when the 
soul i» endued with its aerial body, as we shall presently 
see, by Statlus showing what the separated soul casts 
off and what it retains. 

\J ftltre g potenie tutte qiutnle ronte ; 

*LA{fuiii : E quando Ladmtt tion ha fiii liiM tcavRK Axct iAAKira 
(pHt-j. xxi, :6j. £^i ka tratla lulta laconixtkia: cioi compiuta sua 
vita ; S^vni Jatia eitmt, ri( in vftlule St<o nt forlt 1 f utimitv 
§'ldiviHO. EtiicALC c vivo parlarcl I' animn u scioiflie djilciirpoi 
ma porta leco virtualmenlc. cioi. in una viva potenfa e pronia, le 
due vile tuddctle colla rsKione, dal foeta mirabilmenie chiamate 
P ummo c 'Idivimo. W umanoai spcgnc, itiancandogliglicMK^ni''* 

iSt/luui: ComfMtrc Virg. Ain. iv, 693-695:— 

"Turn Junu utnriipotem, luiiKum miMrata dolorcm 
Uiflinlcfiquc obilut. Iritn, dcmioil Olympo. 
QuiB lottantcin atiimam ncxi>squc resolveret aitun." 

\m virtutt : ScArtaxxini saya this ik a acholaitic cxpreation, 
■V>ifyin£, " Virtually, poitniially," in direct uppoHition to "(or- 
malnientc, atlualmente. " Tommasio explaina tlial the human 
part of the aoul will return actually (lofner.) in aIIoj when it cornea 
to axsumc ita aerial body. Aa we have teen in note 1*) Cesari 
(Icfinea •'« virluU aa " in una viva potcn^a c protita." 

$L' aUrt fi3te»*<: It mu>t be noticed that there is a distinel 
contrast between this line and the next Staiiui has juat laid in 

352 Reading m the Purgaiorio. Canto xxv. 

Memoria,* intclligenia e volontade. 
In atta molto piu chc prlmk acute. 

The other (corporeal) facultieii are all of them mule 
(i.*-., inoperative) ; mtmof)', intelligence and will 
(being spiritual fucultiew) are mure; iicutc in action 
than before. 

Benvenuto says that, just as a sailor is not necessarily 
destroyed by the destruction or wearing out of his ship, 
so the Goul, liberated from the body, has its own powers, 
and, although it may not use them mechanically, it still 
retains its intellectual powers even in greater perfection 
than before. 

Statius next tells Dsnte that the soul, immediately 
after the death of the body, in obedience to divine 
impulse, instinctively wing& its way to the bank of 

the prccedinK ttrtiaa that the soul, afttr death, beine pAtlcd fromi 
the body, retaini in its potenliality all the facultle*. both the 
BpinlualoncR imparled by God, and the corporeal ones it auamnl 
when it became united to the body. He now explains that the nouI 
not onlv brings into operation the above-named spiritual facultica, 
but is able to turn Ihcni to greater account than before; (or, bcinx 
inorganic, iheytan bt better exercised without the impediment 
of the body. The soul still retains it» tacultica of sight, hearing, 
etc., but dncs no like a dumb man, who cannot make tiae of his 
gift of speech from lacking the organ. 

* Mtuwria, tt acq.: Compare St. AuruM. (Or Triaif. lib. x, cap. 
i8) : " Hxc igitur Iria, memoria, intclligenlin, voluniaB. quoniam 
non sunt liei vitie, sed una vitu : non Ires mentes, xed una mens; 
COnHcqucnicrutiqucncc ire« tubstantiB sed unaHubstanlia." And 
St. Thomas Ai|uinuH (.Sumni. TAco/. p. i, qu. Uxvii, art.8) : "Omnea 
potential animx compaiantur ad inimam lolam ucut ad princi- 
pium. Sedqu«dam poi«nti» comparanlur ad animam solam slcut 
ad Bubjectum, ut intellcctu* et voluntas; et hujusmodi potcnti* 
nccessc eat quilid ii\ancant in anima, coiporc dcsiructo. QuKdam 
verb potcntiic sunt tr) conjunctio sicui in subjccto, sicul omnca 
potcntiz sensitive partis ct nutritivic. I>catTucto autcm subjecto, 
non potest accidens remanere. Unde corrupto conjuncto, nan 
mancnt bujuHmodi potcntix actu, Md virlutc tanlum manent in 
anima sicut in principio v«l radicc'' 

Canto XXV. Readingi on the Purgalono. 


Acheron, if doomed to Hell, or to the bank of the 
Tiber, if to be transported to Purgatorj- ; and not until 
it reaches one of these chores doen it know on which 
of the two roads it will have to travel; but, on its 
arrival at its appointed shore, it is at once turned to 
its allotted punishment. 

Senx' arrcetariti, per ti sIokui csdc* 
Mirnbilmenlc uir unu delic rive ; 
IJuivi coroscc prima Ic sue sfrade.t 

To*to che loco li t la clrconscrive, 
La VLrl£i formBtiva raggitt inlomo. 
Coal c quanto nctle membra vive ; 




air una dtlte riw: Compare 

*5«ni' arrtstarsi . 
Fitrg. ii, 100-105 ■— 

*' Onil' io cfic era ora alia tnarina voHo, 
Dove r acquB di Tevero a* !niala, 
Bcnicnanicntc fui da lui ricolto. 
A quelle foi:c, tia cf,\\ or drilta 1' ala : 
Pcrocchft Bcmprc quivi w ricoglie, 
(Ju«l verso A' Achcronte non si cala." 
In St Luii XVI, 23-23, ^^ Tea.i : " the rich man alio died, and waa 
buried ; and in hell tic lifted up hn cycs> being in torments, and 
Mcth Abrahiim afar off, and Latarun in tiiit booom." 

t Quivi conoscf prima It iiu ilradt : Scartai/ini points out that 
na one seema to have noticed that Dante here contradicti what 
he has S4id ciMwhcic, thai a Devil took posscBaion of the soul of 
Cuidv da Monti'fcltro as soon as ever it was looncd from the Irady 
Unf. xxvif, 113 et i<q.). and an Angel of that of Buonconte da 
Montefeltro, likewiiie at the intitant of his death {Puts- v, 104, tt 
uo.), in both cases there being a contest beluecn the messenger 
of Heaven an<l the meascnger of Hell. So both of these souls 
knew their allotted path$ before fsJIing upon one of the two 

I U : Dante meant, that the soul puts on an atrial body as soon 
as ever it haa lighted on one of the shorea. Compare St- Thomas 
Aquinas (Summ. Tlitol. ptn. til, Suppl. qu. box, art. i : " Quamvis 
guhsiantiic spintuales secundum aif suum a corpore non depend- 
canl, corpiiralia tamcn a Deo nicdiantibus spiritualibus Kuber- 
nanlur, ut dieit Augustinus . . . cl Grcgoriui . . . et idco est 
quasdutn convenentia spiritualium substantia rum ad corporaJes 
ubslantiss per congnientiam quamdam, ui scilicet di^nioribus 
BDb«taniiis di^niora corpora adaptentur. , . . Quamvis aulem 

IJ. I 


Readings oh the Pitrgatorio. Canto xxv. 

Without n stop, m wondrous fashion il drops spon- 
taneously upon one or the (two) shores; there first 
it teiiriiK itH destined road. So soon as the place 
(whether Purgatory or Hell) there cireuniBcribeK it, 
the formative virtue beams around it, in the same 
shape and with the stame measurement hk (beamed) 
in the living members. 

Scarlazzini refers ctfsi to the form and features, and 
qiianto to the measurement ; so that Dante would mean 
that the souli shedding forth its active povircr into 
the air, forms itself into a body, identical in form and 
features, and in the measurement or size of the homan 
body that it animated in the world. 

Statius next shows the new disposition which the 
soul acquires. 

E come 1' ur, quand' 6 ben ptomo,* 

■nirnabu* poet mortem non assi^cnlur mliqus carport, ijaorum 
bint formtic, vcl dclcrminati maiore*, dclcrmmtitur lamcn cift 
quscdam Ldrpnralia Una per connrucnlium !|uum(lHTn secundum 
gradum dignitatis earum, in quibue sint qua&i in loco, co moda 
quo incorportUa cue potaunt in loco . . . Incorpornlia nnn Mint 
In loco raodo nliiiuo nobis nolo, c( consucio, secundum <ju&d 
dicimus vorpors propria in loco ewM ; &unt tamcn in loco modo 
BUbMsntiis spititualibus convenicnti, qui nobis pknt manifcMus 
t*.\e non poteKl." 

* fiornc = fiovoruo, which Ik equivalent to "cRrico di pi<>gKia.'' 
Bull explains the text as " prcgno d' acqua." The poet Canlucci 
haa the word* *" per lo ciel piovorno."" Compare Kzik. i, aS : " As 
the appearance of the bow that is in the cloud in the day of rain." 
And Virgil (/En. v. SB, 89), apeakinB of the colours of a aerpcnt : — 
" ceu nuoibua arcua 
Millc jacit varioK adverao sole colorea.** 
And Pctiarcli, pan t, Son. acJv; — 

" Ni dopo piogKia vidi 'I ccle^ttc arco 
Per r aerc in color tanlo vsnaist," ete. 
And Tatita (Cm*. Litter, ix, (n], apeaking of Michael the Arch> 
angel :— 

" Tiili! il Sol ncllc nubi ha pcrcoktumc 
Spicgar dopo la pioggia i bei colori." 
And Ovid (Afrion. vi, 63-67):— 

Canto XXV. Reatiings on the PurgaUwio. 


Per r altrui raggio che in s£ si riflclte>* 
Di diverst color divenU adorno. 
Coal I' acr vjcin quivi si metle 

In quell* forma chc in lui suf;t;clla 95 

Viriuatmcnlc I' alma chc ristcltc : t 

And as the atmosphere, when it is full-charged with 
niD. shows itself bedecked in many a hue, by reason 
ofthe rays of iinolher (the Sun), which are reflected 
in it, 80 in thia place does the neii:hhouring air set 
itself into that shape which the soul that has stopped 
(there) impresses upon It, by virtue of its (innate) 
formative power. 

Bcnvcnuto translates tn'Wtid^)MNf«: "quic habet poten- 
tiam impriraendi talem fo^ma^^" Scanaz^ini explains 
it " imprime in esso per propria virtii opcratricc," or 
"per effetio dclla consci-vata vtrOi in/orttialiva." 

Bcnvenulo remarks thai the comparison of the in- 
corporeal soul to fire, which is a subtJIc spiritual body, 
is very appropriate, for indeed some have thought the 
Boul to be fire. 

B simigliante poi alia fiammella f 

"Qualis ab imbrc sold pcrcustus aolibus arcua 
Inficere inKcnIt longum curvainine ccelum, 
In quo divcfsi niteant cum millc tolores, 
TraHMtux ipse lamen speclatilia lumina fatlit. 
Usque »dc{i quid tangit idem <»t : tamrn ultima distant." 
• rifittle : Antonclli (in Tnmmaato'a Commenlar)-) rcmarku that, 
allttoufih ri/it(lt now mean;. '- reflect," in the time or Dante it olio 
meant "refract," and thu* one may see that Oante was in a fair 
way lowarda understanding the nature Af the rainbow. 

frittrtit: The soul having the power of operating on matter, 
and impressing upon the surrounding air the shape which it 
anitnated in life, formi for itself an aerial vesture. 0»nam 
(pBTj. p. 413) says: " I5ante « fait tine 6pinion moyenre. II 
eraprunle & St. Thomas la notion de I'Jmc aJfparJe qui reeucilla 
se» puissances intcilccluelica plus activi-s que jamaii,sa sensibility 
comme cndormic ; Ji St. Auguatin, ft OTiginc, la notion de 
I'ombre ou du corps Kubtil." 

ItimigtUnU . . . ajte A*"»'wUf -' " }^ forma i il nuovo corpo 
acr«o^ ondc immagina il PoeU ri^estite k anime t^opo U morte : 

S 2 


Readings ok the Purgatorio. Canto xxv. 

Che legue il Toco U 'vunquc si mulE, 
Segue alio »pirto sua tormti novella. 
Pcrocchi quindi ha poscia sub paruta.* loo 

B chiarnata ombr.i, e quindi orgtntf poi 
Ciaecun scmlrc initno alia vcduta. 

And then like unto a little flame which follows the 
fire whithersoever it shiftit, ro does its new shape 
accompany the spirit. And since it aflerwardft from 
thiH (its new shape) has its property of heinj; visible, 
it ie called & shade : and from this again it shapes the 
oicuns of each of the senses, even the sight. 

Bcnvcnulo says that some persons will have it thai 
the passions and feelings uf the body do not remain 
in the soul after its separation from the body, but 
rather something else that resembles them, like as a 
mechanic, who lacks both tools and materials, still 
has their shapes and forms before him. For, since 
the soul is naturally the perfection of the body, there 
remain In it, and in Its powers of action, habits and 
passions which follow the movements of the body, jun 
as in the mind of the ^ailo^ there remain the thoughts 
and Imaginations of his ship, after he has been separated 
from it. 

la qunt forma (cgli dice) acgue lo apirilo, c-ome la AammcUa il 
funco— SimLlitudinc lanto acolpita, quanto Kmplicc" (Vcniun, 

p. 51. »"•"'■ 7yl- 

*[atMr] paruta \% inlerpreted in the Gnur DiitMuno, ^tr 
aajuitlart vitihiU lufetlo. The muI tKcomcs visible by mcana of 
its aCrial body (savK Scaruuzint); which body therefore is, as ii 
were, the shadow of the soul (r ombm MC aniuht). Compare Purg. 
XXIX, 142 ;— 

" Poi vidi quBliro in umile partita." 
Anil Purg. xx\-i, 70:— 

"Che ciai^cun' nmbra fcce in sua paruia." 
In both thcM: latter examples, p»riilu means "a»pccl, appear- 
ance," whereas in the pussagc wc are discussing it means "the 
power of becoming vimble." 

Canto XXV. Readings om ike Purgatorio. 


And now at last Statiu^ brings his long discour<te to 
a cunclusion by establishing his principal proposition, 
namely, that by tliesc arguments the soul is nhown to 
be able to suffer in the dificrent waj-s, as though it had 
been seated in a body. 

Quindi partiamo,* t quindi ridiatn noi, 

Quindi facciam Ic iagriinc c i sospiri 

Che per lo monle aver sentiii puoi. loj 

Secondo chc ci affig^onot i cli^iri 

E gli ahri atlctti, I' ombru si figura ; 

E qunia d la ca];ion di chc lu ammin."— 

By means of thia (aerial body) we speak, and by (his 
laugh, by this wc produce the tears and the sighs 
which thou mnycfit have hcnrd all over the Mountain. 
According an llie desires and the other passionK mnke 
an impression upon us, so dues the spirit T».kc its 
ahape ; and this is the G;iuse of what thou wonderest." 

This is the reason why the soul, when separated from 
the body, can endure suffering, about which Dante 
was enquiring from Virgil, before he asked Statius to 
explain it. 

Divisiim IV. — While holding their profound conver- 
sation, the three Poel?^ have been ascending the stair- 
case from the Sixth Cornice to the one above, and, as 
Slatius uttered the concluding words of his long dis- 
course, they seem to have stepped on to the Seventh 

*QuiaJi pariiitma: Dante hm evidently m ihciic lines closely 
followed Virgil, whose own ideas on the subject arc \'eT>" clearly 
expressed in £n. vi, 7J3 li leq. 

i fi ajKggaHo : The Gran /)ieiuniiri», h.v. ii^f^/rr, S i j, Hpecially 
noie» that in thia paiutaKe alone the word is equivalent to )m> 
prmUmarf. modifittirf, i.t. give an impress to. regulate. But 
under { 11, a number of other paxuiKet are quoted from ihc 
Ihcina Vowtmtiiia where affiggtrst has the )>cnite of Ftrmtirti, posani, 
■uth as /«/. Ill, 1 15 ; Piitg. xi, 1 jj ; I'urg. xiii, jj ; I'nrg. ]«v, 4 ; 
Pnrg. ixKiii, 106 ; and /'>t>, axv, zb. 

Rtadings, m the Purgatoria. Canto xxv. 

Cornice, the last one of alt in Purgatory, wherein the 
sins of Sensuality, or Incontinence, arc being purged. 
A short explanation of what follows may not be out 
of place. As in the other Cornices, so in this one, the 
pathway, from about 12 to 15 feet broad, runs right 
round the mountain with the hi^h rocky cliff {la ripa) 
above, and the edge of the preeipice below. The spirits 
who arc being punished for Sensuality stand against 
the rock, from which issue flames to torment them, 
but a wind, blowing from ihc contrary diixction, that 
is, from the edge of the precipice, blows back the flames, 
and keeps them against the rock, so thnt a narrow 
palh\vay remains between the edge of the flamcN and 
the edge of the precipice, and on this alone can the 
Poets walk without being burned. 

E Hfk vcnuto air ullimn tortum * 

S' era per noi, t e vQlto ulla man ijeslia,! [to 

Bd critv«nio aticnli ad altra cunt.^ 

*(urliirit.' Thi* woid is interpreted by J«copo 4elhl Lwi>, 
Anonimo FiQi-tntinn, Bcn^xnuto, Pinttll. Cats,, Danielle^ and 
others nf the okki Commentators in the sense of "turnini;" 
ftorrimfMlo), and that intcrpretatiun has hccn adopted by the 
Actadtrntd ddiit Crmtca: but u grent number of Commeniaton 
have prcfcrTcd to allach to it the scn»,e of '" torture." ScartB^- 
xini, h<jw<vcr, pointH oui that lorturf m the scnw of "tortnem " 
did not enter into the Italian languaj;c till much IrIct. In Conv. 
tr. iv, c. 7, II. 73-7t>, Dante uritcB: " 11 cammino, che altn tien;u 
Korta h« tapulc tcnere, quetto *cArto crra, e lotliwi pci li pruni 
« per Ic ruinc." 

1 6<r noi .- The expression vtnHto ^en>p^r»wi ia the rendering 
oftnc Latin vrnluuKtal tJ =• wc have come to; compare Virg. 
■*"". vi, ^5: "Vcntuni eiat ad hiiien." Ami Gnyrg. iti, 98: "Ad 
pracliv vcntuni est." 

J alia nion deslra : As uaual they lui-ncd to ihe right on 
ciitctinK a new Cornice. Compare /*iir(5. xik, 80-81 : — 
" te volelc tnivar la via piii tdsto, 
Lc vostic desire sten Kmpre di fiin." 

tallra rura : They had been in deep s)XCulittion att to how 
spiriu can grow lliin. but now they will have toturn to the more 

Canto XXV. Readings on the Purgatorto. 


Quivi la ripa fiamma in fuor balestra,* 
E la cornice spira fiato t in subo, 
Che la riflettc, < via da Iti sequcsira ; 

And now wc had arrived at the UhI turning, ftnd had 
bent to the right hund. a,nd were intent upon another 
care. Herethe ciilf darts a tiame outwards, and from 
the Cornice is sent forth an upward blast, which turns 
the flame hack, and drives it away from there. 

Beovcnuto interprets sequestra as separating the l!anie 
in two, so as to leave a narrow footway, a» tt were, 
between two walls of fire, but the interpretation I have 
followed, which is that of Fralicetli and Scartazxini, 
seems preferable, for the next three lines show very 

practical quentioii of how to avoid ihc flames oo this new 

" la ripa ftamtna in fuor bttUstm : " Siama ormal non lontani daJ 
['uruduo icrrcNtre; c lu divina )ciut>tiiia, o i! Cheiubino ilai- 
r ig^^a spada chc fu poato a guardia di cbbo. Io clrcontl<>. si fail 
dir«, d' una siepc di hamme, chc a. ncBHUtio cotiscntono ciitrarlo 
prima d' aver canccllata cnl (uoco o)(ni rcliquia di aflTctio car- 
nalc. Uc Tumnic vcnKtmo tiacltatc datia ripa o sia dal fianco 
del montc, d riempiono tultr> il scllimo cd ultimo Kirone, la- 
Hciando ifiombro soltanto un lenlieruzzo huI kmbo del ripiano; 
cbi dal *«»tn girnnc chc i^OKK'acc a qucsto, c dove Ic anime 
camrainano in oraiionc e cligimio, Hpira un ixnio in alto c tulto 
intomo prcmcndo in addictro 1c fiammc, aprc quellu viuz^a non 
ana ai passi del poeu. c for&e per entm allc stcs&e fiammi: invia 
aurc bcneliche ad alicviare e confartar quell' incendto.' (Perea, 
/ Stilt Ctrcki, pp. ij8. 339). 

4 to ccmUt ipiwa ^ato : " E quetto (ingc per conveaienza, che 
come li bcni tcrrcni hanno a muoverc la luasuria ct incilano la 
carnc, e la carnc muove lo incendio undc vicnc la concupi. 
scJenzia e 1' alto camalc ; coal la ripa gitti la famma chc tale 
peccatu purehi : ct alle(;i>ricaineatc, dii 1' anlinenna c da ta 
emacrmiiDne <le la ctrne rinurga in quctU del mondo uno fcr- 
vorc di caiill, chc purclii o);ni carnalitJt." (Huti.) Scariascim 
disaereet here with an ofiinlon o( Hcrci, which wntild attribute 
the blual 10 the fanninj^ of Ihc air by the wings of the An^el of 
the Sixth Cninicc. Were this »o, there would only be the bUxt 
at the opciiinf; of Ihc ttairway, but il in evident from the teal, 
tbai Ihc wind in qucBlion waH emitted from the margin all round 
the Cornice equally. 


Readings oh Iht Pwgatorio. Canto xxv. 

distinctly that the fire is on one side and the unprotected 
edge of tlie precipice on the other. 

Ondc ir nt convcnia ilal Uto achiuKO tl) 

Ad uno ad uno. cd iotcmcvn il foco 
Quinci, c qaindi* temcit cadcrc in giuao. 

For which reason we were obliged to walk one by one 
on the open side, ;ind I watf in fear of the iiie on ihe 
left hand, and of falling headlong down on the right. 

Virgil now warns Dante not to turn aside hts eyes 
cither to the right or left, but to look well to his footing. 
Ucnvcnuto thinks this means allcgoricatly, that the eyes 
ought to be curbed, for otherwise one may easily fail 
into the sin of Concupiscence. 

Lo Duca miodicca: — " Per <iucsto loco 

Si vuol icnvTc nRli occhi stretto il fren<\ t 

Perocch' crrat potrcbbesi per poco,"^ lao 

My Lctidcr Ksid : " Along this plHce one will have to 
keep a tight rein on the eyes, for a verj- little might 
cause us to go astray/' 

Dante now relates how they hear the spirits of the 
Sensual chanting a hymn in praise of Chastity, just as 
in the other Cornices they have heard the voices of the 
penitents singing the praise of the virtue opposed to the 
particular sin they are purging. He then directs his 
attention to the penitents, whom up till now he has not 

• Quinci, I quindi : When the PoeU emerged frofn the «t(iiTW(i)> 
into the l>cvcTith and Um Coinicc, ihcy turned an usual to the 
right hand. They have ihcreTore ihc lire on ihcir Idt haad 
[guiadx and the preci[iice on their right Ujuiniii). 

fagli ocf^hi ilrttio il /rtno ; Compare Propcniuii (II, xv, 16): — 
"Oculi sunt in amarc ditces," 
and PialiH cxix, 37: "Turn away mine eycn from beholding vanity; 
and quicken Ihou me in thy way." 

Canto XXV. Readings on Ihe PurgatoritK 


Sumiiut Dtits fiemtntiit* ncl scno 

Al tcnincte ar<lore nlloiH udii CAntando, 
Che di voliier ini fc" takr non mcno ; t 

B vidi spirii per h liamm* anilanclu: 

Perch' io guardava loro, cd a' miei passi, taj 

Compartendo la viata a quando a quando. 

SumiNit Dtu! dementia I then heard bein);; sung in 
the bosom of that great burning, which made me 
anxious to turn (to see who was singing) no iesti 
(anxiously than to mind jny footing). And ! saw 
spirits going through the flame ; whereupon I looked 
at them and at my footsteps, sharing my attention 
from time to lime between them. 

Djtnle next tells how he heard the t^pirits crying aloud 
the words of the Blessed Virgin to the Archangel Gabriel, 
" 1 know not a man" {Si. Luke i, 34). As we have 

* Sumina Deui tUMtMlis : The opening words nfthc hymn that 
the spirits in the Aamcs were sini;ini;. There is only one hymn 
in the Brex'iarintn KomtiiiHm that bcpnt ii-ith these words, and 
that is the service of Lauds on the Festival of our Lady of the 
Seven Sorrtius; but the viurAa of that hymn have nothin'K to do 
with the flins purged in the Seventh Cornice. The principsl Com- 
hmentaiora explain, however, that Dante was quoting from the 
Ibymn Kung al the acrvicc of Matinx on Saturday, which we arc 
[totd waa in Uantc'ii time eomcwhat diJTcrcntly worded, and was 
Emodelled at a later period. Il commcneeK av (ollows: — 
"Summa: Partm clcnientiie, 

Mundi regiK ({iii machinam, 
UniuH et subtttantiae, 
Trinusquc pcrsonin Deua: 

Nostros pi us cum canticiB 
Flelgt benignc suscipe." 
+ Ji v^gfr mi/t' talrr iit>n mtno, etc. : Ceoari remarkii how natur- 
ally the whole action i» descnbed 1 Dante heard the »weet pathetic 
;;chant, and would turn at once, or would wish to do so, to see from 
rhont the vtiiceit caine, but the excecnve caution he had need of, 
to talic heed to his footsteps, compelled hira 1o liividc hia altcnlion, 
(casting alternate Klancen. Iirsi in one direction, then in the other. 
' Benventito explain)^ it ai> though Dante would Kay: " I had at first 
Turned my cycH to 1»nb after my fiiotinK, us Vli|;i) had enjoined 
me, but now I turned them with no less care tuwaidt the tire, 
when 1 heard the sacred chant." 


Readings en the Purgaterio. Canto xxv. 

seen in the other Cornices, so we iind here first an ex- 
ample from the life oi tlic Virgin contrasted with the 
sin beinf^ purged: the next example is that of Helice. 

The spirits are recording examples of the virtue of 
chastity, the opposite to sins of lust. 

Apprcsito il fine ch' a quell' inno iaau, 

Gridavano alto:* Virnm noitcvenoico: 
Indi ricorninciavan 1' inno basst. 

Flnitolo, anco Kri<lavano:~" Al bottco 130 

Si tcnnc Uiana, cd litice + caccionne 
Che dl Venerc avea senlito il toaco." — 

After the conclusion that is made to that hymn, they 
cried aloud: Virum nvn cugnoscif ; then they lecom- 
menced the hymn in low tones. When that was done, 
they ciicd out anew : " Diana abode in the wood, and 
drove from it Hehce, who had felt (he poison of Venus." 

Benvenuto says that Diana, the moon, whose influence 
was thout;ht to be favourable to maidenhood, is supposed 
to go forth with her virgin nymphs to the chase for the 
purpose of destroying wild bca;st&, that is, to promote the 

* Gridavain'' alto: The cxamplct< thai «re cited ticcm to have 
been alwAyn pTocUimed in a loud voice. The piayer? arc BJwa.y« 
uttered softly. 

f Rlitt : Helice, sAmctinncii callei! Callisln, was anppowd lo 
huve been the daughtur oi Lycaon, Kinj; of Arcadia. She wa» 
one of the attendant Nymphs of Diana, who di»nii»ed her on ac< 
LounI of an amniu uith Jupiter, and Juno turned her into a bear. 
Her M>n, Areas, wba ipt-cn hy Jupiter to Main lo be brouchl up. 
When Areas wan on ihe point of killing his mothci duiiiig (he 
chai^, mnthcr and ion were plucvd b)- Jupiter jtmong the stars, na 
the Ciicai and l.illle Bear. ';Sec Ovid, Mclam. ii, 401-530, but 
more especially in 11. 453-465). In I'ar. «xi, ji-iJ, Uanie apcaka 
of the Constellation of the Great Bear hj- the name of Hdtce :— 
"Sci Barbari, venendo da tnl pluga 

Chcciaacun giomo d' Eticc At copra, 
Kotantc col suo Aglw ond' ell' e vagB," etc. 

Ctnto XXV. Readings on Ihg Purgat«rio. 


mortification of the lusts of concupiscence, which lacerate 
and wound the soul and body woi-sc- than any wild beast. 
In conclusion Dante describes another song in praiac 
of chaste men and women. 

Indi al cantttr Inrnavano; indi donne 

Gridavftno, e mariti chc fur ca»ti,* 

Come virtutc c matrinionio imponnct 135 

E qunto mode credo chc lai basti 

Fcr tuUo il tempo chc il foco f\i abbrucia; 

Can (si cum [ cnnvien, con cotai (utsti 
Chc U pmKa Uusatx/u \ si ricucia. 

Then they returned to their singing; then they pro- 
claimed wives and husbands who were chaste, accord- 
ing as virtue and wedlock ordain. And this fashion 
I believe suOiccs them for the whole of the time that 
the lire burnK thcni; with such a cuic [i.f. remedial 
treatment), and with Huch a diet is it necessary thut the 
luHt wound of all (the sins) ithoiild be healed {Hi. 
acwn up). 

Bcnvenuto says this is a beautiful and appropnatc 

*rdsli; Bcnvenuto and Butiread "indi Aonne sriJavam i mariti 

cktjttr casti," which would b« translated : " after this, women touk 

up the cry, and proclaimed the virtues of huabanda who were 

chaste." But ir tnia were the currcct reading, wc should not have 

, been lold what the men were proclaimin);. W'c may also lake for 

' granted that all the ipiritH in the Comice of cither sex must have 

ecn guilty of Kins ai Seniiualily, and weiultl have enouKh to do in 

Ipurgini; their own tiini>. without thinking of what was profitable for 

rtbe BouU of the other hcx. 

fimfonnt.i.K.Hiintponiff' imtont, imponta not. impontaiwiMwini- 
Boccaccio [Otfam. tiiorn. i:. Km: v) uaes soniit tor n< tono io in the 
■aamc way : " c 6onne qual tu mi vcdi." 

Icura miiat i)ot be urtderslood here as "cue" but •&**GU(e," 
i.e. medical treatment like the French word (ure, t.%. " la cure uux 
ratain«, the crape-cure." Curn.pMti, and fMga, mum all be taken 
^together. The wound, the cure, and the diet. 

^Atttttto : Blaric intcrpreti Dit lexzo or dttittita an "alia line, 
linalmenlc, da ultimo." Compare Inf. vii, ijo: — 

" Vcninimu al pti! d' una toirc al daBsex/o." 


Readings on the Purgatorio. Canto XXV. 

metaphor; for, as the physician sews itp an extensive 
wound, and sometimes burns it with fire that it may not 
putrefy, so does tlie Eternal Physician -here purge away 
ihe sin of Sensuality by tire, that it may not introduce 
poisonous matter into the soul. 


Canto XXVI. Reading^ m Uu Purgatorio. 




This Canlo is so altogether exceptional as regards 
the subjects treated in it. that I think it desirable to 
abstain from the close explanation that I have en* 
deavoured to give elsewhere. 

In the concluding portion of the last Canto, the 
penance of those who had yielded to the sins of Sen- 
suality was described. In this Canto Dante con* 
tinucs the subject. 

Ucnvcnuto divides the Canto into three parts. 

In the First Division, from ver. i to ver. 51, Dante 
describes his encountering two bands of penitents 
moving in opposite directions, and the question that 
is put to him by the shade of Guido Uuinicelli. 

In tlu Second Division, from ver 5a to ver. 102. he 
answers Ouido's question, tells the spirits who he is, 
and desires those in both bands to tell him their 
names. Upon Guido Guinicelli naming himself, Dante 
addresses him with affectionate devotion as the father 

• A.S this poet is f«r belter known by the latter of these modes 
ofspellini; Hib nsmc, I >hall adoft tbu inittcAd nf lh« former, 
except when copying ihe tent. 


366 Readings on the Purgatorio. Canto xxvi. 

of those who. like himself, have woven the sweet 

rhymes of love. 

In the Third Division, from ver. 103 (over. 146, Guido 
modestly disavows his own pre*eminencc, and yields 
the palm to Arnaut Daniel, a Provcn<;al poet and trou- 

Diviiiott I. — The thiee Poets are stepping cautiously 
along in single tile in the very narrow space that is 
vacant between the edge nf the Cornice and the flames 
\indcr the cliff-wall in which the spirits are moving 
along. \Vc shall Icam from II. 16 and 17 that Dante 
is walking behind Virgil and Statius. The Samcs 
are on their left hand and the precipice on their right. 
Virgil again warns Dante to beware how he walks. 

Mcnirc chc »1 per I' orlo, uno innan«i alcTo. 
Cc n' and&vamo, c spciso il biion Maestro 
UicevK: — "Guarda; giovj ch' io ti Kaliro." — • 

While wc thus were ko'ok alons the edge (of the Cor- 
nice), one before the other, the good Master kept 
snying : "Tuke heed; let it avail that I warn thee." 

Benvenuto thinks that Virgil wa$ allcgorically warn- 
ing Dante against the danger of falling into the sin 
of Sensuality. 

*li seaUro : "ti fo tnuto a scannre e il precipitio t la fiamraa," 
Set the Gran Diiionanif. which iatcrprcts walirirr nnc) sc«l- 
Irurt, "di t'liro e in«petto fare altnii a«tiito e iiai;acc." Com- 
{WTC Pciraich, part 1, C«ni. x, »t. 3 :— 

" 1/ tin a mc noce, e I' altro 
Allrui, ch' io non Io scallro." 
Varchi IBrattant', Vinctui, 1580, p. 46) defines the word: " Di- 
veil artcora - . . con voce piii gentile, c unata da' compoaitoti 
nobili, staltriru ondc vicne uaitn, c itattritt, cioi accorto, 
e sagace." Blanc '.Vim. Dant.) says the word it derived froni 
the Latin uilU'*, to instruct, to draw attention to anything, 

CtDto XXVI. Readings m the Purgatorio. 


We have said that the flames were on Dante's left 
hand. We now hear thai the Sun was shining on his 
ri^ht. The effect of thi& is that his shadow is cast 
upon the Rames. The only way lh»t Dante could be 
seen to have a ^shadow was that, where it was pro- 
jected on the flames, they showed redder, as fire 
always does when seen in the shade. This phe* 
nomcnon is at once noticed by the spirits, whn ponder 
over it for awhile, and then, remarking to each other 
that they are in presence of a livinf^ man, they all 
flock towards Dante in astonishment. 

Feriami il Sole * in suH' omero dcstro. 

*Feriami it Salt, et «eq.: In Tftmmarfo's commentarj- m»y 
be read a diasettation by Anlonelli m to the position oC the 
foets, M well a» that of the Sun, and the probable hour of the 
day, which he IhinkH wia about 4 p.m.: "Al principio del 
Canto preccdenic, quando i Pocti com inc in vino a salir la scala, 
era circa )' ora neontta pomeridiann. Lunsa dnveva rnier In 
! tcalA, e ancho t da cicdcrc con qualthe fcrmata, »« Staxio 
! intanta compie il nuo lunxo raf;ioniimcnlo. I'ui erano vcnuti 
camminando per la ftcttima cornice, c udcndo c vedcndo aniinc 
nel mndc anlorc. Tutto ton«idcr&to «i pu6 icncrc per pro. 
tAlMle chc nel roomcntn in cut avverlc il Poeta d' esiterc (erito 
-dal cole sull' omero dcitro, fonsc ■ un bel circa [oi marly as 
\f«iU^'\ dope il meKodt I' nra quarto. Ci& k' accords eoi due 
'vcr»i Bcxuenli ; pcrciocchi il sole distandio circa un' ora c mcitio 
dair occaso, I' occidente dovcva inutitrc in bianco il rtlcMro 
fiisMr^] naturnl colore del cielo. Postc dunque le quxltro, il xole 
Fcriva alia spalltt denlra il Poeto, queiti >i trovava da dcitm 
a »iniiira per I' appunlo nel piano del vcrticate. in cui era )l 
sole sicsso in qucir ora. c p^cift avcva camminalo da tramon- 
■ana vento ponenie per un numcro di gradi e^ak all' mimst 
atlufllc del snie; chiamandosi daclt attrenomi kjifniit di un 
astro, I' angolo chc in un dato punto vienc formalo dalla mcri- 
dinna di quel punlo e I' intcrsc^tone del piano oriixonlak m cui 
i ia incriiliana vol piano vcrlicak ov' i I' aatro. Ma il sole con 
una dn;1inajiDnc txireatc di urtdici j;nidi. con un an^olo orario 
di ijuatlro ore e ad una lalitudinc austrak di Kradi trentuno 
c minuti quaranta, uve%'a un atimul di Kfadi icmiantatrft 
s minuti quaranladuc, contaio da scttcntrione ; dunque allrct- 

368 Readings on the Purgatoric. Canto xxvi. 

Che gii raggiando tutto 1' occidente 3 

MuUva in bianco aspetto di cilestro;* 

Ed io faces con I' ombra piA rovcnte 

Psrcr 1b finmmn ; c pure a tanio tndtziof 
Vid' to iTioit' ombre nndando poDcr mentc. 

Quesia fu la cagiftn che diede inizio 10 

Loro a parUr di mc ; c cocninciAni 

lanlo AvcvH gimto da quel punto il Pocta, e gli reatavano quindi 
poco fiii chc vcnltnei gradi di giro per giun^crc al vero punto 
di ponentc dclla montagnii." "Some of my readers (saj*^ Dr. 
Moore, Titiu Rejtnncii, p. loo) may remember that these few 
lincb arc quotcii by Mr. Ru^icin [Mod. Painltrj, ii^ p. i^q), as 
probably the fincoi description in literature of tnleiue heat. 
fic maintains that in these few very simple, and in aomc aenbc 
common-place, touches, Dante with no help from smoke or 
cindcTS haK produced a more vivitt ctfect than Milton has 
secured in ten linca of elaborate dcacription and varied imagery. 
Danic'& few words sug{;est, as Ruakin tayv, 'lamhait aonOiiia- 
rion,' I witth I had space to illustrate further this splendid and 
uncqiuElcd power in Dante, nf picrcinji' at once to the very 
heart of things, and revealing, aa it were, a whole world of 
scenen'i '>^ of emotion, or of paxunn al a flash, and as often as 
not by a flaiih of silence, thai is more eloquent than any worda." 

*eilatro is, according to the Gran Ditionario. the "«fcr 
chiaro Jil eitio f/ttrv," whereiift itxzirro in aaid to be "colore al- 
quanto piu pieno del ciUttm, c che ancbe xi dice Turthino ; " 
) that wc may take titatro to be a paler blue than niure. The 
vo colours urc defined by Boccaccio, in the opening words of 
' the Giornala ix, of the Ditamnvn : " La luce, il cui tiplcndor* 
a nnitc fuKKe< avcia gik V attavo cielo d' aixuriino in color 
cilG«tro muuto lutlo." The Atuwmo FioreiUino comments: 
"il Sole facca la ploga occidentalc tulta bianca, impcrtt che di 
auo colore i 1' acre cilestro; c quando il Sole t aenza nuvole, 
al lo biancheegia per la luce de" «uot mxti (w. wrgfi)." 

t/-ar; a lanlo indUio: Scanaiiini points out that Dante's 
shadow, falling on the flame, is far less visible than when noticed 
by the apirits on other occasions. Dante does not even aay 
that r itmhra si vnUva, but that il /««i* . . . ^A rovtnlt furtr 
la fiamtna. The inditio therefore wao eiceedtnely small lo the 
Bpiritii enveloped in (he flames, but Danlc cviocntly wishes to 
emphasize their quick obBe^^'ation, for he uya that merely 
i^ri) at that small indication they delected the probable con> 
tiguity of a living being. 

Canto XXVI. Readings on the Purgaloria. 


A dir:— " Colui nnn par corpo fitlizio." — • 
Poi verio mc,1' quantfi polcvjin farsi, 
Certi «i feron, aempre con riguardo 
Di non uacir dove nor> foBscro arsi. 13 

Striking me on the right shoulder was tlie Sun, who, 
(laning forth his rays, was already changing the whole 
VV'cKt from its axure hue into white ; and with my 
shadow I was making the flame appear more ruddy; 
and merely to that indication (of my being alive), I 
perceived many of the shades, as they passed, giving 
heed. This was the occasion that gave them an 
opening to spealc about me ; and they began to say 
one to another: "That mun doea not seem a Tictitioua 
body (lilcc ours)." Then certain of them came to- 
wufdn rac, »8 near as they could, always giving heed 
not to come out where they could not be burned. 

They would not for one single instant interrupt their 
penance. It must be noticed that, in Purgatory, the 
spirits not only submit willingly tu the chantisement 
imposed upon them, but they actually love it. In 
Pnrg. xi, 73, Odcrisi begs Dante to walk stooping 
Lbestde htm ; in xiv, IZ4, Guido del Duca prays him to 
'depart, as he is more desirous of weeping than of talk- 
ing; in xvi, 142, Marco Lombardo will not listen any 
more to him for fear of leaving the pitchy smoke; in 

*/iUitio (according to the iirait Diiicnaho) is that which is not 
what it neemH. Tlic bodies of the spirits in Purjatorj- and Hell 
were B<:tial bodies, and not what they seemed, a* may be seen in 
Pttg. ii, 79, where Dante, arter failing to embrace the impalpable 
form of Casclla, exclaim* :— 

"OO ombtc vane^ Tuor che ncll' aspclto ! " 
Colui non ['ar corpo fitlitw, means then, "Colui (Danle) ha carpo 
di vera carnc, non composto, &n(o, d' arin, cocnc i nostri." 

tttffMiw . . . Ctrti iiferon: Ctimparc Fur^. 11,67-75: where 
the newly-arrivcd spirits in l\\f Anli-Pur^atorioRixV round I>an(e 
vhcn ihcy nAtice hit retpifaiion. Faru ai^itti is a wdl-known 
TuKCHn idiom, meaning to step forward. Farii vfr%o una : to 
Approach any one. Compare Pfg. viii, 31 : — 
" VCr mc » fcce, cd io vCr lui tni fei : " 



Readingi on the Purgatorio. Canto xxvi. 

xviii, 113. the penitents entreat him not to ascribe it to 
any discourtesy if they leave him, but only to their wish 
to move on ; in xix. 159, Pope Adrian bids him pass on, 
and not retard his penitent weeping ; in xxiv, gi. I-orese 
parts from him, giving as a reason that, in that kingdom, 
the tiime is too precious ; and here the penitents take 
heed to keep within the flames. 

One of the spirits now addresses Dante. We shall 
learn from v. 92* that tht: speaker is Guido Guinicclli, 
of whom Benvcnuto relates that he was a knight of a 
very illustrious family of Bologna, banished for their 
imperialist sympathies by a civil sedition. Benvenuto 
expresses his regret to think of how many men, tike 
Guido, virtuous in other ways, have been marred by a 
disposition to licentiousness. Guido now invites Dante's 
attention, telling him that he and all his companions in 
suffering arc burning and thirsting with eagerness to 
know the reason of the shadow cast by Dante on the 
flames which are tormenting him. 

— "O tu ehc vai, non per esacr piji lardo,t 
Ma fonc rcver«nt«, agli allri dopo, 
Kitpondi a mc chc in setc ed in foco ardoij 

*" Son Guida Guinicclli, e gift rni purgo 
Per ben dnkrmi prima th' ill' cutrcmo." 

^ noH per tiitr pifi fardo: The Commentatofs mostly point out 
tbat Uante had be«n getting lighter and tighter aaeach »ucc«ft> 
aivc burden of sin, aymbolix«d by the several P's, had b«er) re- 
moved t>ytlie succesiivc Angeh of the Comicen. He hat now 
but one to l>c erased on Icavint; the present Cornice, and hia 
■novemenis consequently are but little le» speedy than thote of 
the other two Poets, to whom out of deference he yields the pre- 

Jin itii fi in tvce anh: Oaniello accros to give the be« 
interpretation of thia paaiagc- He w-rilcs: " Arda infuoca, ov' io 
pur^o il pcccato della came, e ardo in stU, ciod m dc«idcrio 
KrdcntiMimo d' intviulare chi tu aei," etc. The explanation ia 

Canto XXVI. Readings on the Purgatnrio. 371 

Kb solo » inc la tua ribpoeta ^ uopo ; 

Chi tutli qucMJ n* hanno maKgior ncIc so 

Che d' .ncqiiB frcddn Indo o CliApu. 
Dinne com' i the hi di le parctc • 

Al ni>1, come SG lu noti foHHi ancorA 

Di morlc entrato deniro dolla rcte."^ 

" O tKou. who fiOCBl behind the others, not from 
being elowcr, but perchance out of reverence, replr 
to me, who am burning in thirst and fire : nor is it 
by mc iilonc that thine answer is needed; for all 
these here have a thirst for it greater thun hits Indian- 
or iKthiop for cold water, rell us how it is that 
thou makcst thyself a wall against the Sun, as though 
thou hadst not yet passed into the toils of death." 

Bcnvenulo says the simile is veiy appropriate, for 
Death casts its net into the great sea of mortals, 
and lays hold of every species of living being. 

Dante would at once have complied with this 
appeal, and have named himself, but his attention 
is diverted by the arrival of a fresh band of spirits. 

Si mi parLava un d' eni, cd io mi fora 3$ 

■, ifauc thirst was not one of the paniihmcnta oi this 
!e^ bill or ihc previous one. Hunger and Thir»t arc the 
'penattieB Inr Glultony, and Rummf; for Incantinence. Compare 
InJ. Knvii, 21-34. where Guido Ju Monlcfeltro says to Dante : - 
" Perch' io Ilia giiinto forue alquanta lardo, 
Nont* incrcsca rcsiarc a parlar meco : 
Vcdi chc non intresce a mc. ed ardo." 
*partu usually means the wal) of a room, a pariilion wall, as 
diatinKuishcd from iiiuro. the outer wall It in. however, some- 
time n used to dignify ou(/r uoIJ, tonietimoi us. the terraced wall 
of Ihc vine-clad hilla in South Italy, in which sense we hnd it in 
Purg. iii, ^' "sopcrchiar quc»ia parctc," i.e. the outer wall of 
the Cornice. Here it haa the signification of mlacola. Com- 
pare Pu rg. xKxii, 4. J :— 

" lid essi quinci e quindt av«an parde 

Di non calcr" [i.e. a wait, or oMacUf ef Mifitmnt}> 
Lamcnnai.i explains il in a note : " an mmr tie non » loucut." 

AA 2 


Riadingi ok the Pitrgaioric. Canto xxvi. 

Oii manifcMo,* %' io non (oui anecot 
AJ altra novirl ch' appa-rae atlorn ; 

CM per Io mcizo del cammino accno 

Vcnlu gcnie col visa incontro a quests. 

La qual mi Tccc a nmifar aospcia 30 

Li veggio d' n^i parte farsi preaia 

Ciascun' nmbra, c bacJarsi una con una, 
Senza realiir. contente a brev« fcsta.J 

ThuB spoke one of them to mc. and I should have 
alraightway made myself known, had I not turned my 
attention to another new sight, which then iippeared ; 
for in the middle of the fiery path there CJtmc • crowd 
of people with their faces turned the oppoeite way to 
those who had made mc stop to tjaze at them in 
wonder. There (where ihcy met) I sawall the shades 
advance in haste and kiss one another without Mop- 
ping, content with a brief greeting, 

Dante compares this encounter of the two companies 
of spirits to that of two troops of ants. 

*M mi jofa Gill mani/etto : i.t. "mi sarei pk manifcttalo." 
Uanifnto 1* a syncope tor ouiniftsUHo, which Nannucci (Wma/. 
Crit. p. 403, vi;^ay» was very frequent, *,j,-. Irvnto for trtmtaJo: 
mono for motmio, etc. 

t/(uii atttio: Scanait/ini cays that the early writers used 
generally to employ the suxiliar>- verb rutre with the verb «/• 
t^ndtrt. in preference xnaitrt. Compare Oiov, Villani, vii. cap. 7: 
" Lo re Manfredi vcKRendo apparjic I' oitc del re Carlo, avuio sua 
consiglio, prcsc parlitodel combalicrc ... ma in ciii prcac mil 
partitn, che u iosst atUio\ioi uaveut alteut.i.e. asfeiljiu] \ino a 
due {;iarni, Io re Carlo e Kua o*te erano morti e presi Mn<« colpo 
di spada," etc. 

l/lita : Amonj; the many nicnilications of fnltt given in the 
Grun tyix'tonario, we find in |f ^2 : " Di llctc accoslicnic reciprochc, 
e quindi in forma di rilleuii^-o." Compare Foniguerri, U Rkiar- 
Jrtio, xvi, St. 31 :— 

"Bn abbracciano inoteme e >i fan feKta, 
E la lardanja >olt> i lor mokata," 
And Boccaccio, Duam. Giorn. i, iVnt;. ii : " AI quale, come Gian- 
notto Hcppc che venviln se n' era, niuna coaa meno apcrando che 
del suo tarsi cristiano. se nC venne, e gran Testa in&ieme ai 
fi)C«ro." And Otorn iv, Nov. i: "dove trovato Guiacardo. tiv 
aiemc maraviglioia fcsla « Icccro." 

Canto XXVI. Readingx oh tJie Furgntorio. 373 

Cos) pet cniro loro schicra brun»* 

S' ammuxa I' una cAn I' altr> formica, 35 

Fornc kd capiar t lor via c lor Tortuna. 

Thus in the midst of their dusky phalunx will one 
ant meet another head to heiid, perchance to get 
(mutual) information of their coad, and of their 

The ants ^ivc each other information, as to the path 
to be pursued, and as to the goud or bad fortune they 
have had in lindin^ food. 

Al this point Dante notices that the spirits, aAcr 
exchanging greetings that are merely friendly, in- 
nocent, and devoid of any unworthy feelings, vie with 
one another in simLltancous denunciation of Incon- 
tincnce in its blackest forms- With one heart and 

* tchitra krunti : This pa»itai;e was probably suj^erted to Dante 
fron) parallel one« in Virgil and Ovtd. Compare Virg. /£n. iv, 
403 .(05: 

" Ac, vcluti ingcntcm formitic farris accnum 

Cum populant, hiemis inemores, tecloque reponunt ; 

)l nigrum campis ajtmcn, pncdamque per herbaa 

Convectant callc angusto." 
And Ovid, ^fetam. vii, bi^-fizd: — 

" Hic noa frugili'Kas aspcximus agminc lon^o 

Grande imus exi^u'i Cormicas nre Kerenies, 

RugOBciquc Buum hcrvanUs corlict- callem." 
tri^iiir.- Others read tfiar. 5>ee Gran Diziaitaria, i.v. spitir^ 
"To avarLh, tn invcdlisate, to cxfilore-" Varchi {L' Htixolano, 
cd. ijtiS, pp, 5S, yfj defincB the word thus : "' (iricliure i, c[uando 
due piu riiiTatisI in akun luogo favellano di scgreto, stare di 
naacosA All' UBcio, e porgere 1' orecchie per s^nlire quelln dicono: 
il vefbo generate i i.piar<, verbo lion nieiio infamc, chc ori^liart, 
(cbbene Jt pigtut aUvna vvUn )>i biwna farit [as in tlie le»t], dov« 
far /ii sfia ni piglia scmprc in catliva. il chc si dite vnlKurmente 
eucre refer endario." Compare al»o Petrarch, part i. Cant, xv, 

■' Tu uti in nic il lulto, Amur ; a' «lla ne spia, 

PJnnc quel chc dir dci." 
Btanc say& thai ipiart is akin to the Ccnnan tfxiiun, "to itt- 
vnligate." Compare qIko Psdim vxtxix, 1 {Prayer Book Vt»- 
lion) : " And spieat out ail my intays." 


Readingi m the Purgatorio. Canto xxvi. 

voice they loudly shout out different examples of this 
sin in its hideous varieties. 

Tosto che panuti I' xccoKlienxa amio. 

Prima chc il primo pasao li Iraacorrii, 

Sopragndax * ciascuna s' s&atica ; 
L» nuova gcntc :— " Soddoma c Gomorra ; "— + ^ 

£ r altra :— " Nella vacca entra i'aKi(e,t 

Pcfch* tl tottUo « sua luMuiia corra." — 

As soon ns they terminate their friendly greeting, 
before even the lirst footstep passes away from that 
spot, each [spirit) gthveA to out-cry the other; the 
newcomers (explain): "Sodom and Gomorrah**; 
and Ihc others : " Into the cow enters Pasiphac, in 
order that (lie bull may run lo her luet." 

It is well to explain here that the spirits that shouted 
Sodom aud Gomorrah were those thai arrived last, 
and at whom Uante had stopped to gaze in wonder. 
We are to infer that their crime had been the same 
detestable one as that of Brunctto Latini and bis 
companions, described in Inf. xv and xvi. As this 
band went off to the left, we arc to infer that they 
had been the more guilty of the two. The company 
whose cry was the monstrous episode of Pasiphac, arc 

* Sopragridiir, o( which Tominascri remarks: '■ Voct pi>ien- 
tiuima. nella forma di quelle de' Salmi: iufiergaiulnnl iPmim 
XNxiv, 19), tuptrtfxravi (Psalm cxviii, 43) " ( Vulgate). 

'tSoddouM t Govmrra: "Due nomi, che umiliana I' umano 
onoglto, ricordnndo cntnc un popolo intero, giovani c veechi, 
piio Kcndcr \\ basso, c in appetili pcggio che bniiali cosi afor. 
matamente corrompeni, da irnvitv afgomento a iitle vojctie 
ncranclc In ateasa bellcK/o dc^li Anjjtli. Due nomi, chc aitc- 
riaconu culta memuria del hxaa prudigioiO, ctle a puDtrc il fuoco 
d' inlami libidini di&irugcc rcrliliMima terra c le t<^lic pctlin 
la virt6 di fruittficjire. timoolcKKianda la siciiiilJi infelicc di <)ucl 
vizto, a cui il poctA bene aasegna nvll' ln(cmo la land» ntcrilc 
conic libica arina. c Ic lurghe faldc di fuoca piovenli di neve in 
alpc (cniiB vcntn " (Pcrci, / Siitt Cmhi, pp. 3^1, aj^). 

I Pmi/t ; Sec Virg. BmoL BtL vi, 45-55. 

Canto XXVI. Readings on the Purgatorio. 


those spirits with whom Dante had been conversing 
when the newcomers entered upon the scene. 'I'hese, 
on the separation of the two bands, continue to go in 
the same direction is that pursued by the Poets, 
which is, of course, to the right : and according to 
the usual laws of Dante's Hell and Purgatoi')', where 
two companies move, the one to the ri^hl, and the 
other to the left, it is assumed that those to the right 
have incurred guilt of a less heinous description than 
those to the left. Whatever may be our conclusion, 
in a matter so repulsive, it is undesirable to go closely 
into detail. 

After likening the separation of these two com- 
panies of spirits to a flight of cranes, which parts 
into two flockii that Hy off in opposite directions, 
Dante relates (hat the newly arrived spirits go 
their way. white those whom he had first met. draw 
as close to him as they can without issuing from 
the flames, and await his answer to their previous 

Poi come KTu,* M allc montaxnc Rifet 

*gTM: It IB remarkable thnt the word "gni " only occur* 
twice in the Divina Cf-inmuiia, and both times as a simile con- 
neclcil willi Ihote putitshcd for Scnsualilj'. The other institncc 
is in /n/. v. 46-49- Coinparc kIso Virg. £n. x, 265. 266 :— 
" Sirytnoniae ilant signa grueB, »t<|Ue acthcru tiBnant 
Cum sonitn, (uRiunti^uc Nolo* clatnore sccundo.'' 
See >lu PitTK- "■"■t'^'i b4-b&. 

fRif*; The Khipha;Bn mountatnE were supposed to be situated 
in the Nonh ol Scythia, but the name wi« applied to »ny cold 
mounlnin in a northern country. Compare Vire. Georg. 1, 340- 

" Mundus ui »d Sc^i'thiam RhipiEiixciui: iirduuN arccs 
Consurgil ; preraitur Libyac dcvcxus in Austros." 
And Cwrf. iv. 51R:— 

" Atva Khipeis nun<)UBnn viduala pruinla." 


Reaiivigs on the Purgatario. Canto xxvi. 

Volaaner parte, e parte inv£r 1' arene, 

Qucfttc del gicti quelle del sole itchifc; 45 

L' uriA ^cntc sen vb, I' ultra ten vicne, 
B toman laKnniandoai primt canli,* 
Ed al );ritlar che plu lar si convicnc 1 i 

E nccostAfEi « mc, come davanti, 

Emi ntedcsmi chc ni'svcan prccAto, 50 

Allcnti «() RHColUr nci Inr sumbianli. 

Then like cranes, which should fly part to the Rhi- 
fihaan mountains, and part towards the SAnds (of 
Libya), the latter shunning the ice, the Tornicr the 
Sun : so one crowd (of spirit);) goes, the other comes, wcepinf; ihey return to ihctr lirsl MingK, and to 
the cry which suits them beat; and those sante who 
had lately entreated me (to speak) pressed ctoKe up 
to inc, as before (the others arrived they had been 
doin^), shou'ini; in their countenances great attention 
to listen. 

Their chanl was Summie Dius dementia, iheir crj- was 
one of the examples of chastity which best conveyed the 
lesson of the contrary to their special sin. Benvenuto 
sa>'S that it is more honourable lo chant and cry out 
the names of the All Merciful God and the Virgin Maiy, 
than to cry out Sodom and Gomorrah and the like. 

Division II. — Dante now, in answer to the ()ueslion 
put lo him, admits that he is a livin;; man, and gets 
from the spirits tnronnation as to themselves, and as to 

*^rimi Miffi .' Compare In/, xvi, iq-io: — 
■■ RicominciAr, cnrnc not rintemmo, ei 
L'anlico vcrfto," 
In La Giottra, lib. i, st. 60^ Pnliziano cxpresHcs the umc idea ; — 
" H r iisignuol »olto le amate fronde 
Canlnndo ripclvn I' anticn pianto." 
f (ffWar che Jnu tor ti convUw : Thin, thinlis Scarlaz<int, 
refers to the examples of <:hsstity quoted in the last Canto (IL 
128-135), i^f which each company selected Ihe one that best con- 
trasted with their own particular form o( Incontinence. 

Canto XXVI. Readings on the Purgalorio. 


the other band that have gone off the other way. He 
begins by telling them that he had neither died when 
young nor when old, but that his body is present as 
well as his soul. Benvenuto explains this to mean that 
Dante is not only alive, but of middle age. 

And now because, with the petition the spirits had 
made to Dante, they had at the same time assured him 
that they did not think that it was from any slothful 
lack of" zeal that he was walking last of the three poets, 
he therefore, who, as Benvenutu points out, sought not 
praise, but puliation of his sins, answers humbly, con- 
fe&sin;; his ne^Ufjence and ignorance. 

lo, ck« due volte avca visto lor (;rAlo,*' 
Incominciai ;— " O animc sicurc 
ly aver, qunrrin chc sin, di pace *latOi 

Hon sun rim»c uccrbtr ni mature 55 

Lc membra <li ih. ma son qui mecof 

* lor grata, i.e. lor gritdimt»lo, hr fiattrt. Grata here is a sub- 
stantive, much used by the earty poeis. Let one itiHtanvc suffice. 
Compare Dante da Majano, in Poili xUl Prima S«oic lUUa Lingna 
iUttiima, Fircnec, 181&, 2 vuls. tJvo, viil. ii, p. 450:— 
"E non son mcritato 
Gii A' alcun bene, vhc rii j;io' sentiue 
Da quclla, in cui k' alHuac 
Lo meo volcre, « "1 gr*ti>." 
Mr. HitHL-lf<ioI ^<;mark^ on Juc volte in this line, that thh i> the 
second lime the shades had come as clobe up to Dante as they 
^could without k»vinf{ the fire (11. ij-is), in Ihctr anxiety to know 
liow he could be ulivc. He hits therefore twice »een that they 
ftrouid be pkaHcd with the information. 

i Ixnumbra mit . . . ioa ijui meto : AriBiotlc lauehl that Man 

vas the body unformed by the soul. Plain held Man lo be the 

^oul alone disjoined from the body. n>nte here follown ihc 

doctrine of bin master, St. ThomaH Ac|uina!i, tliat Man in neither 

the body alone, nor the snul alone, but the two together. See 

iSumm. Thiol, pars i, qn. hxv, art. 4: "Nam ad naiuram &pccici 

Ipeninct id quAd Ki^niliciil delinitin. Hcfinilto aiitem in rebux 

' naturalibu* non iii);nifica1 formam lanl^m.Mcd formam rt materia m. 

Undo materia cat pars specie! in rebus naturalibux, nun qutdem 

materia sipiala, quic G»t princtpiurn indlNiduaiiontx, scd materia 


Readings oh the Purgatorio. Canto XXvi. 

Col sangue suo e con le euc giuntuie. 
Quinci su vo per non e5«er piik cieco: 

Donna i dj topra che n' acquiiM graxia,* 

Per chc il mnrial pel vastra raondo recoi. 60 

t, who hnd twice perceived what ihey desired, twgan ; 
"O soiiU. secure of attain in i; n state of peace, when- 
ever It may be, (know that) my limbs have not re- 
mained on yoi) earth cither unripe or ripened (iji 
either in diildhaocl or old age), but are here with me, 
with their blood iind with their joints. Up this 
mount&in am I ^Qing so as to be no longer hhnd (to 
God's craee) : t]|> above (in Heaven) there is a Lady 
(the Blessed Virgin) who wins grace for us, in virtue 
of which (gr^cc) 1 bear the mortal part of me through 
your world. 

Dante, having now satisfied the eager curiosity of the 
Spirits as to his beinc a livinp man, asks them to reveal 
to him their own names, as well as those of the spirits 
in the other company. 

Ma He la voHtm mii|;Kior voj^lia saiia 

Tosto divcnga, sj chc il cicl + v* alberghi, 
Ch' h pien d' amorc « piti ampio si spuia, 

communiB . . . Sicut cnim de rationc hujus hominis cstquM sit 
ex animn, ct camibus, el nuaibus; oportet cnirn de subvtantrA 
»pcciei cftac quidquid cs\ cammunitcr de substantiJk omnium in- 
drvidunrum mibnpccic cnntentnrum." 

* Donna ^ Ji iofra cht »' a{A)Mita graiia : Some CVmmrntalors 
pasM over thi« pa«itaKe, others take it for granted that Beatrice iit 
the tady meant, but Scartnc^ini contenda v«iy rcBsofuibly thai it 
rcfem to the lady in Heaven, i>. Ihe BIcKscd \'trKin, «ho vent 
Lucia to Virgil : see Inf. ii. 94-96 :— 

" Donna t Kcniil nel ciel, che t\ conii>iange 
Di questo impediments ov' io ti mando, 
S! che duTD giudixio la»afi uangL-." 
He lays i^cal strrsH on n' acquhta graiia. who wins ^race /or •■» 
men, and layn thiit, even conceding that it was Bcaincc who won 
grace for Dante, no one can make out that Dante would mean 
that she acquires Rfiicc for all men. 

"f il fUl . . . Ck' i /ii( am^ia ti tf^uia : i.i. the Empy- 

rean . Compare Inf. ii, 8z-&i, where vireil a«li« Bcairicc how »he 
l/t - 

has brought herself to quit the Empyrean to visit him in Limbo: — 

Canto XXVI. Readings on the Purf^atorio, 379 

Ditemi, acctocchi ancor carte nc verghi,* 

Chi Rictc voi, c Chi i quclla turba 6s 

Cb* ec nc v» diretro ai vortri tctghi ? "— t 

But, SO may your supreme aspiration be soon fulfilled, 
in such wise that your abode may be that Hcav«n 
(the Empyrean) which is filled with love and is the 
widest in extent, tell me, that 1 may hereafter record 
it on my pages, who are ye, and who are that multitude 
that behind your backs are going away (in the oppo- 
Mle direction)?" 

Dante describes the effect of his answer, and relates 

" Ma dimmi la bii»:inn rhc non li guardi 

Dello Bcendcr quaggiu&o in qucsio ccntto 
Dail' nmpio loco ovc tornar tu ardi." 
Sc« alao Conv. ii, 4 : '■ L' orcIin« del silo (ParaJiio) i ((UCttO, chc 
'1 pritno (eUloj ch' t nvmcrato £ qucllo dov' i la Luna : lo ^econdo 
e qucllo dov' i Mercurio: jo tcrio ( audio dov' t Vcncrc: lo 
quano i quello dov* b il Sole : lo quinto e quelle dov' i Marte : lo 
scslo i quclto dov' i Gioic : lo acttimo i quelle dov' i Salurno ; 
i' ottavo i quetio dellc Klelle (iw«: lo nono i quello <:hL- non 
i scnRibilc, sc non per quoio roovimcnto che i dctto di sopra, 
lo quale chiaraano molit cielo CriHtallinn, cioi diafano. ovvcro 
tutto tratparcnte. Vcramentc fuori di lutti qucKti, li Caltolici 
pongonu lo cielo Empireo, che tanio %-uol dire, quanto ciclo di 
(iamma, ovvcro luminniro; c pongono nao c»crc immobile, per 
avcrc in hc, secondo ciascuna parte, ci6 die la sua materia vuolc 
. . . K quietncpacificn £ loluoKo . - ■ decli spirili, sccondo 
chc la santa Chicsa vuole. cne non pu6 dire mcnio^na . . . 
Qucito i il (ovrano odificio del mnndn, ncl quale latto il mondo 
k' inchiudc, c di fuori dal quale nulla fe." S«c alto St. Thom. 
Aquin. Summ. Th^i. pais i, qu. Uvi, art. j; and qu, cxii, art. t, 
• carte at mrgAi : Compare Pttrartk. part i, son. Kvi : — 

"O d' ardenle virtute ornata e calda 

Alma eentil, cui tanlc carte I'crgo." 
And ArioBto. Orl Pur. xa:iv!i, »t. xv:— 

" Bisoencrlk ch' io vctshi piil U' un foglio, 
E ch ogK' 'I Canto mio d' aitro non parlc." 
And Se^ncri, QuaraiuuiU (Turin, 187A), Predica xti, cap. ii, p. 
ill : " Fate ora voi ration . - ■ quanto j probabtic ch' ei ai fosac 
aempre rimaKlo aguidar I'aratro, in cambio di csercitare lapenna i 
c a aolcar Ic campagnc, in cambto di ver^arc le carle } ' And 
Polifiano, La Giottra, ii, »t. 8;— 

" Ml volte sol di noi vergar )e carte." 
♦■ dirtttD di voiiri Urghi : " pcrchi in fatti, vollando indictro 
dopo il baciarsi, ciaKuna delle due torme, ai voIkto inaicmc le 
■p«llc " (CcMri). 


how the spirits, when they hearO of his being alive 
were struck dumb with astonishment. 

Son ahrimcnii atupidci si lurba* 

La montanaro, c rimirando ammula. 

Quitido rojcia c salvaltco »' inurl)«,t 
CIic ctascun' ombra (ecc in sua paiuta ; 711 

Ma poitlii fuion di atuporc sorchc. 

Lo qual ncgli alti cor losto &' sttuia,! 

* ilupido si iirha L» monlatMnt : Venturi (Simil. OmiI. p. I7I,' 
■•iM. 297 .> cuniratts ihi& Kcnc with lh« preceding simile iP-rg, viii, 
61). where iiordcllo and Nino dci Visvonti start bavk, on httw 
inK that Danic is alive in rurgatory. Theirs n but the natural 
wondcT of inlelliKcnt mind». whereat (he rutlit from the hills is 
all a);apc arid longue-lied in Ihc bcw ildermcnt o( stupefaction. 
Compare Dante's EfiUlc (v) for alt and for i^ch 0/ tht Kmga 
of liaiy, etc., ^ 7: " Ncc untum ut aisursatii cxhortor. scd ut 
illius cit>!>tupci<:riti!t atpcctum." In Cone, iv, i^. It. 4H-A0, Danic 
delincs (his condition of the mind: "Lo.S'JH/«rc^uno8tordiinento 
d' animo. per giandi o maravigliewe kosc vedere, o udirc o per 
BJcun fnodo aentirc ; chc in quanto paiono grandi, fanno r«v- 
rttfle a ti quelle chc le wntc; in quanio paiono mirabili, (anno 
voglipto tti saptrt di quelle quelln chc Ic Kntc. £ pcnN Kli nntichi 
rcci nclle laro magioni faceano magnilici lavori d oro e di pietrc 
c d' artilicio, acciocchi quclli chc Ic vedcuero, divcni&seio ttupidi, 
c pcf6 rrvertiiti e domandaton dctle condiaioni onorcvoli del le^-** 

ts' in»rba: Buti Interpol' inurbani &s cominf; into town/iff^ 
Ihefint lime {s' inurha, cioi mcttc si frimn nclla cittft). We find 
Ihik word (ucd by Pulci. ilorganii Maggiote, xtv, tx. vjn:— 
" Bgit era il di dinan^i un tupo enlrato 
Nella cttlk per mcjio delta lurba, 
E fu per male aiij;urio inlcrjiretalo, 
Ch^ non san/a tagion lupo *,' inurba." 

Js' litiiita: This woid, which ts of frequent uw. ia derived 
from the l^lin lulari, "lo ward oB, to seek lo avert," etc. 
Varchi {L' lltiroltiMo, Venice, ij8«>, p. 79) thus defines it : 
"Allititr*, qu«ndn i dclU {irima congiugajiane, non vienc da 
lak\ ni aicnttica auuimn come hanno iciitto Alcuni, ma t 
propriisMmo, c hclliMimo vetbo, il cui signilicalo non poft 
■pnmem con un vcrbo solo, perchi i quello chc i lalini dicona 
or itttirt, or tumfrimtrtj or rtlHtilerr, c tat volta ttliigHfrf, e 
usollo il Boccacvto — »v ben mi rivordo— non solo nella novclU 
di Alibcih due volte, mu ancora ncll' oltava delta Tts*i4t dh 

*Undc allutata i,' era veramentc 
La polvctc, c il fumo,' etc., 
c Danlc, la cui propriety i maravigliosa, diwc ncl aO del Pmr'^ 

Reatlinf;s on the Purgatorio. 381 

— " Beato tc, chc dellc nostre raarche,"— 

KicoininctA colei che pri* in' iivchiesc, 
— " Per morir mcglio • cspcricnia imbarchc 1 1 75 

galorio," etc. Camp&T« Also Uino Coinp«eni, Cnuiea, lib. iii 
(Fircn«, 1879), vol. ii, p. 3*7: "E Uguccione dolla P&ggiuoU 
Co' Magalotti e con moiti rtobili ncmlnornn lanta discordia in 
Areizo, chc come nicnici siavano l potcnti Ohibcllini ; ma pure 
poi 8* attutorno." And Txsso. Gtr. l.thir. xx. st. ii: :— 
"Qui pon fine alle niorti ; c in lui quel caldo 
DisdcKn" umriTal par chc »" attuti." 
and Oiov, VilTnni, xii, cap. 21 ■- " B in qucain modo «' ailul& 
r arrabbiiilo c funoiin popnto dinponti a rutiarc e 11 malfare." 

• morir mfgtio : I am here following Dr. Moore in his edition of 
Dftnte [fnllt UOftri di DntiU AHghieri, Oxford. 1894J in reading 
Prr morir mt^iio. instead of I'iivf which. Dr. Moore (in I88fi^ wrote 
to mc, wa* the rcadinf; of the vast majority of inodern editions 
and Commenlarics. and the one he personally prcfcncd Oun, though 
he mentioned that he had at that time found morir in (ony-one 
Codicci ft^Ainst oivtr in seven. In his Ttxtual Criticism, pp. 431, 
413, Dr. Moore had Mnid that on critical giounds. apart from MS. 
evidence, vivtr appeared to him preferable, partly on the i;ri)und 
urged by Scarta^vtini. that it suits better than marir the scn&c of 
I. 5K juiit ubove,iM vo pernon liur piA citcv. Both htii iwrtr and morir 
nwf/iii arc accurate Italian phrases, the former the niArc common of 
the twoL Morir has a sort a{ fritntt facie suitableneiis in the mnuthi 
ot the ipirilx in Purgatory, which may have led to its Kubuliluliun, 
if Huch be the cbhc The iinly oUI Comnuntaloi'ti who noii(:c 
the pa^sRge are divided. Hcnvenulo, reading vivcr, adds: 'iVrr 
duhito quid pofia DuHus tiiil, il ittelim morluus est.fitr ecmpiUtii^tum 
hujui oftrii " [liot dn I doubt that the poet did live a better life, 
and oualified himself for a belter death by the compilation of this 
work]. Su that Benvctiuto may have known both reading*, and, 
while preferring the one, may nave made his remarks deal *ith 
both, l.andino and Vellutello explain ntotir nugH<i an naturally 
meaning "in mag^ior^azia di Dio." Buti tachcr curiously thuH: 
"cJit ton iernii morto n uaii av<fsi vntulo f nf^ritata litlUt noitrti 
purgaciom," which |Dr. Moore thinhs) looks as if he undcritood 
miarir in a spiritual sense as '"cleaJ to sin." Of twenty-four 
editions examined by Dr. Moore previous to tS8g, no less than 
tvrcniy-two hud viPtr, and only two (viz. Wittc and Carncrini) 
had uiitrir. Per contra the first four editions all have morir. Of 
the MSS. which he haa now (1895) examined (Dr. Moore tells nte>, 
«!venlv-»even have uiiwir and <inly fourteen have itirrr. It is a 
difficult question to decide positively either way. and in each caae 
the lar^e majoritv uf MSS. may, perhaps, be allowed to turn the 
scale. Pns«ib1y i'—'g- viii, 60, might be (Quoted in suppurt oi morir. 

fimbitrcht for imbarchi. See Nannucci, AHitliii Critiea, p. <S 
{viii), where it is clearly shown thai thiK was a regular form of the 


Rfadings on the Purgatorio. Canto xxvi. 

Not otherwise is the niouDtainecr stupidly bewildered, 
and is .speechlexR as he stares about hini when rough 
and rustic he enters a town, than euch Shade tiecame 
in its appearance; but when they had put off the 
burden of that smaiement, which in elevated minds 
is quiclcly subdued, •' Happy thou," bcfian again he 
who had <iuestioncd me before, "who the bietter to 
die atl lading (i.«. gathering in a store of) experience 
of our bordeisl 

G-uido Criiinicelli now gives Dame the information 
he asked for rciipccting both bands of spirits, and 
with tnuch plainness of speech tells him about the 
sin of the company that have parted from them. 

La i;cnte, chc non vicn con nDi, otktt 
Di ci& pcT che gii Ccur.* Imnrando 
'Rcgina' contra s6 chiamar h' intcxe; 

Pcrd si parton ' Soddomu ' f;ridftnda, 

Rimprovcrando a »i, com' hai udito, 9o 

Ed aiuUn I' iinura verRognando. 

Those people who come not with us, were guilt}' of 
that, on account of which in former days (Julius) 
Cxsar, at one of his triuinphH, heard himself called 
' Regina ' as an insult ; that is why they depart {from 
us) crying ' Sodom,' in sclf-vitupcration, as thou hast 
heard, and by (the glow oQ their shame th«y assist 
the burning, 

Gutdo then speaks of the special sin of the band in 
which he himself is, 

Nostro pcccato fu ermafrodito ;t 

persons of the ^-erb in Dante's time, /o imbarcht, ta imbartJu, tgli 
unb-trfht, and distinctly not, aa some maintain, an aliefati«R to 
auil the rhyme. 

*CeMr, etc.: This refers to an episode related by Suetonius. 

ifatalo . . . ermttjrodito: I do not, as I said, wish to cloady 
diacuss Dante's meaninii; aa to this strange epithet. The whole 
question ix moal ekhauslivclv treated by &cnrta/tini in his Leip- 
zig comaicntsry (i^?^)- Whatever Dante intended to signiiy 

Canto XXVI. Readings on Ike Pur^atorio. 


Ma perchi non servammo umtina lc|;cc, 
Scgiicndo come bcBlic I' jippclilo, 
[n nbbrobrin dt noi, per no'i nt lcf;t{c,* 
Quando parliariici, il noiYic di colci 
Che h' imbesti^f ncll' imbestialc schcgg«. 


by the tin of this comirany. it seema to mc, after siudj'ine Scar- 
laxiini'a note, as well as those of other Commcntatorai, chut 
l>ante considered il of a les* heinous degree than that of th« 
company ivhose cry was "Soddoma." Bcnidc.i, on thin Cornice 
only docs Danlc place the pcoitcnta who had bcca guilty of 
Luisuria or Sensuality. As all bind* of Incontinence then are 
chiuti»ed on ihin Cornice, and a* the more guilty compHny, 
who had gone to ihe left, had sinned with the male acx, 1 feel 
drawn to Ihc conclusion that the company, among whom ia 
Quido, had been generally guilty of all kinds of exce»% witli 
the fernnle sex, for, if ordinary Sensuality is not cha«tiacd on this 
Corniet, we might well inquire where else in Purgatory sinners 
like Haoto and Francesca, if they had (cpcnlcd before death, 
would be placed by Dante to undergo their purgation. 

*lfggt: In the Gran Diihnanc^ a. v. Itggtri, g 16, we find 
the word has somctimea the s!);nii\cation of "Scaprire, Mitni/fs- 
tare." The present pasvagc i« quoted in illuatration. and inter- 
preted thus : " Per rimprovcrarc a noi i nosiri falli »cnsuali, 
dictam cantandn il nome della regina Paaife. " In/, x, 64. 65, is 
also (quoted : — 

" Le nue parole c U modo della pcna 

M' avcvan di coalui gii letto il nomc," 
and i* thus explained: "A vedcilo tra le fiamme dc' miscrc- 
denti, e udirlo parlsrc a me di suo IWlio, quevti ttegni mi diuero 
ch' Ggli era Guido Cavalcanti, mi Kccro quasi Icggcrc il nomc 
di lui." Sec also Par. xxvi, 16, 18 :— 

'' I.^ ben che fa conlcnia i]uc)ita cort«^ 
Alfa cd £ di quanta scriltura 
Mi lc);£c amoic." 
+ 1' imitit'iA: ThU word *i{[nificii (1) " Divtntar t(iiM":or 
(a) "At^t cttilumi o Pan dsioni di htttia." The following pa»- 
aa^e from one of the Dutloj-hi of Tanso, quoted in the Graa 
Disionario. bears a curious resemblance to the line we are dis< 
cusiing: " Erba divina, la quale il difendc dalt' incanto tli 
Cirecj »! ch' crIi non »' imbc«ti& coll imbcstiaie gfcggc." Thta 
last illuMratinn means the actus) transformation into a beast, 
but the Gran Ottioitaria uuoles another passage (inadmissible 
here) cuctly rcprodacing the ugnification of the word a» given by 


Readings on Ike pHrgatorio. Canto xxvi. 

Our sin was hcrm aphrodite {i.e. we were ^uiliy of 
perfectly unbridled dcpmvity) ; but because we did 
not observe the human law, following our appetites 
like brute beasts, (therefore) to our own shame, when 
we part usundcr. we pronouoce the nunie of her 
(Fasiphac) who mmdc hcr.tcif be«ti«l inside the bcaat 
of wicker-work. 

Guido now names himself, but excuses himself for not 
naming any one else. 

Or )Mi ncwtri ntti, c ili che fummo rei : 
Se fnree a nome vuoi Haperchi semo, 
Tempo non 4 da dire,* e non aupreL 

Farotti ben di mc volcre scwno : 90 

Son Outdo OuiniiclU.t c gii nii purge 
Per ben ilolermi prima ch' all' ertremo."*— 

* Ttmpo Hon i da din : We may remember that at the beginning 
of iTiii C«nto<ll. 4-6) the Sun wa« geicinfi low in the \Vc»t, and, 
when once it set, we know that sU aclinn would cca»ein Purgatory. 

f Gii't'o Guinixeiti : lielter known ax Guinicelli. Of him Nan- 
nucci {MtntuaieMUi LtiUraSura dci Prima SaoloJilln Lingua lUtiaiUt, 
vol. t, pp. 31, Ji) Kxyn that he was the father of Kalian literature, 
and wan the mo»t imporCant oE the poclH who, bcKaie Ihe lime of 
Dante, wrote in the lingua vofg^rt. The infornjniion concerning 
hilt life is extremely scanty and obscure ; and we know little more 
olhim than that became from a very ill ualriausi family in IloJocna, 
named S'i Priucipi, who were adhcrenls of the Imperial Party, 
Tiraboschi thinks he muat have been the sonof Guiniccllo de' 
Priucipi, who !■ recorded (Ghinirdacci, Sioria Jt Dalagna) to have 
executed a Ic^al document in 1349. He married a lady of the name 
of Beatrice, descended from the highly illustrious family dUia 
Fralla, a member of which was ai one time Bit>hop of Bologna. 
The year 1374 wa^ione of great misfortune to the (ruinicclli family, 
as in that year the Lambertaui party, to which they belonged, 
were banished from Buloenu. It is not known to what part of 
Italy Guido betook himscli, but he did not long survive his exile. 
and died in the flower of his age in r.176. Tlenvenuto says of 
Gutdo: "Fuil iate (ipse] Guido vir prudcns, ckiqucns invenicn» 
e^egie pulcra dicta matccnn ; lieui autem erat ardentis in^enii et 
Kngua;, lUardcnlii luxurix, quales multi invcniuntur Mtepc." In 
Conn, iv, 20, Dartle calls him quel nohiU GaJdu GtinixiUi: in the 
Dv Vh^. Eloquio, i, 15, SSanimus Gutdo; and Nannucci say^ that 

Cantti xxvi. Rea^ittf^s on the Ptirgatorio. 385 

Now Ihou knowcst our deedK, and of whul we were 
guilty: if perchance thou desirest toknow byname who 
we are, there is no time to tell thee now, nor should 
I know (them all). Aa regards myself I wilt indeed 
satisfy thy wish {lil. will make thee devoid of desirini;) ; 
I am Guido Guinicctlt, and am already (Admitted to 
begin) purging myself, Ijcchukc I deeply Tcpenlcd be- 
fore my last hour." 

This last line means that, although Guide had only been 
dead 24 years, his repentance previous to his death had 
been sufficient to ensure his salvation, and to entitle him 
to Kiich an early admittance into Purgatory, instead of 
being relegated, like Manfi^d, Belacqua, and Buoncontc, 
to a long period of suspense upon the drear>' slopes of 
the base of the mountain in Ante- Purgatory. 

Dante's detit^ht on finding that the speaker was Gutdo 
Quinicelli is so great, that he compares it to thni of the 
twin brothers, Thoas and Euniu», on recognizing their 
mother Hypaipyle. 

Quail nella IrtMina di Licurso* 

Guido waa by no mcKna unwoithy of th«se encomiums, for he 
raiBtd himtelf above all the other poeuof his time, and of bim 
Lorenzo di Mcdki spoke asifiyl/cutytit OTiiataii$iio,KrtteeieKUnzuao, 
Uuido, tnuiiv. ed rvnato . . . t tertamattt fu il prima, da cui la bMt 
fw t m dtl noiiro idiomti fu Jektmenlt colorila, gu»h app»ma Ja fuel 
grono Arttiuo (i.<. Ouittonc d' Arczcn) era •flala aJamhrata. For 
allhogghGuidoV poetry was of nothing bul love, as waa the custom 
of his timcH, he did not compose his sones like many foolish poet- 
asters, but that which he wrote contained lofty and moral epiniona 
after the fashion of the Platonist*. 

*trifli:uidi Licurgo: An<trcolicxpl«inti the seoKc of thevord in 
this pasMKe an cqaivalent to lui/crivminKwfD, ue. fury, rage. The 
word cvidtnily implic* a combination of grief and raee, grief at the 
lotvti of the son, and ruKe ajtainKl the wife to whom the xon'ii death 
was tnnputcd. The Gntn Dit'umurw (j i) says of the paa&agc : 
" Paria dc' ft);!) d' Isifile, chc corseio a liberarla nell' atto che 
Licurgo, re di Ncmea, angosciato di sdegno. la voleva far motirc." 
Lycurgus, King of Ncmea, had iniruatcd his aon to the care of 
U. BB 

Hypsipylc a former queen of Lcmnon, who had been sotd to him 
HB« stave byxnmc pirate*. The child died of the bite of a serpent, 
and LycurKUA ordered her lo be put to death. Ab hHc >v«» brini; 
Ici) to execution she wns rceoKniied by ht-r twin sons, whom she 
had borne to Jason, but from whom she had long been parted. 
Thcu: ruNhi'd {nniard aiul pre^-ailcd on Lycur|;u* to »parc her life. 
See SlaliUB, TMtJmitt, v. 720 (t sttf.. where the «ccne io beautifulty 
dcKcribcd, and would seem tn have made ■ great impression on 
l>anlc, for before thi» he «pcak» of l-!yp»ipylc {Ptrg. xxii, til) as 

"qucllachc moatr5 LaitKia." 
And in /»/. xviii, 8V96. the whole episode is related of her bclrayal 
and aubttequent aDandnnmcnl by Jaaon. for which he is being, 
punished in the firat Btilcia of the Kighth Circle. 

♦lion ii laulo intur^: Uanttino on thia : "Non mi inalio 
distcndo a tanio quanto si distesono i liclioli d' Uipylc. Im- 
perocehe e&ti con«ino ad abbracciar la madre. Ma io nen andai 
ad abbracciar Guido : pcrchl- era ncl fuoco." Daniello eommenta 
in very similar IvnKuage. 

i padre : On thia Tommasio observes that Dante in the same way 
often slylcn VirKil Padre, and that here he implicn that (luido was 
hio father in nlyle. but not in language, and, by the exee&nivc prmiac 
that Dante bcMow* upon the Pro^-en(al Arnaud, we see the proof 
that he puts the Provencal poets before the Italian ones, though 
he by no meunx pula lh« Proven^ul idiom before his own native 
idiom, as we may read in Coho. i, 10, 11 74-80 : '* MMtsimt ancora 
per difendere lui (•/ volgart) da moltt huoi accunatori, )! qua!) 
dispregiano caso c eommcndaro gli sltri, massimamcnte i)uella 
di lintiua d' Geo (the Provencal laDjciiaGe), diccndo ch' i piii Iwlto e 
migliore quello che qucHto ; partendosi in ct& dalla veriti." Scar- 
taizini pointa out that here and there, Dante dialincily haa 
imitated Guido, ai may be »cen by comparinic (luido'i C-mont, 
bcKinning Ai cori^tnlii ripura srmpr4 Amort, with Dante's Ca/mtnt 
iii (in Cmv. iv), Lt doki rime d' amor, 0\' to tolia. I>ante's cele- 
brated line, .^iHOT.cA/dJrorgrnti/riilfoi'a^^ also taken from 
Guido'aCanceiM mentioned above, in which there is (at. ii) the line 
PocotI' tmtirt in gfiuil wrt i' afpreniie. With il fMirt him, compare 
/■/. ar, 8a, 83:— 

" Chi in la mcnte m* i fitta. cd or mi accora 

La cara c buona imagine paiemiL" 

These words were addressed tn Hrunctto Lalirii, Dantc'H former 

maaicr in science, as Ouido Guinicelli was in poetry. Curiuusly, 

enough both ar« undcrsningchastitcDient for the swnc offence 

Canto X.XVI. Readings on the Purgatorio. 


Mio, c dcgli rIUi mici miglior,* chc mai 
Hime d' amore uxlr dnlci e IckXixIk : t 
B Hcnfs udirc k ilir periHOHO J andoi, 100 

LunsH fiBta rJmiraniJo lui. 
m per lt> (oco in Id piii m' appFestctu. 

Sucti ail the two aonn became, when during; the racing 
ftrief of [,ycurguR they a^ain saw their mother, even 
such Ijtcamc I — ^but rose not to so loftv a pilch (of love 
and courage as to rush forward as Ihcy did)~when I 
heard him name himself (Guido GuiniccUi) the father 
in poesy to me, and to the others my betters, (all) who 
ever used thcRweel and graceful rhymes of love: and 
I walked on for some time without listening or speak- 
ing, full of thought, gazing in wonder at him, and yet 
by reason of the fire I did not approach nearer to him. 

Dante's devotion and attachment to the great inspirerof 
his love sonnets would have led him to throw himself 
into his arms, had it not been for the dread of the flanies, 
as in Inf. xvi, 40-55. he dcsciHbes himself, for the same 
reason, unable to embrace the three great Florentines 
undergoinK similar punishment for the same offence. 

Division III. — Dante has not up to now addressed 
himself to Guido personally, except as the spokesman 
of the band among whom he is undergoing punish- 
ment, but he now does so, and testifies his profound 
respect for him (according to the mode used at that 

^mitt migtior : Contrast with P'lfg- *'• 97"99- — 
"Cosi h» tolto V uno «11" aliro Uuido 

La gloria dclla lingua ; t forat i nato 
Chi I' uno e I' altrn caccerk di nido." 
^dvbi e ttggiaJrt ; Compare Horace, Ari PoH. oo: — 

" Non mttB est pulchra esse poeinala ; Hulcia sunta,,'* 
XpemoiQ: Compare Inf. v, io9-tii :■ - 

" Da chc id imcsi quelle animc offense, 
China! '1 visn, e lanto il lenni basse 
Finchi 11 pocta mi disae : ' Ch« penae ? ' " 


Readings oh ihe Purgatono. Canto xxvi. 

iiitu) by addressing him with roi (jwm) iniilead of the 
customary in.* He invokes God to witness his promise 
thai he will speak up for Ouido's good name, and will 
Jiave prayers offered up for him. Guido, in reply, offers 
Danle hts earnest ihanks for the service he has done 
him in promising to perpetuate his memorj', adding that, 
aslnngas DantcS books are renowned, sowiilbe Ouido's. 
He further asks him the reason for his great affection for 

Poichi <li riKuardnr pasciuto fui, 

TuUo m" olTersi pronto aI ttau servicio. 
Con r atTcrmar * che fa credere altrui. loj 

Ed cgti a inc:~"Tu laici tal vcitigio, 

I'er quel eh' i' ado. in me e lanto chiaro, 
Che I>ctc J nol pu6 tor, n* farlo bigio. 
Ma 8c Ic loc parole or ver ciuraro. 

Dimmi chc i cation per che dimootri no 

Ncl dire e nel guaidarc avcrmi caro? "— 

Aa soon as I had fed enough on ga/ing (upon him), 
J otTcrcd myself as wholly rciidy for his service, with 
thai affirmation (a solemn vow) which makes others 
lidievc. And he tome: " I'roni what I heat, thou 
leavest in mc such and so evident a sign of thy 

• On this subjccl see Readings on tkt Infcrnif, and ed,, vol, i, pp. 
365, 566, a& In (Ml being a style of address which io Dante's time 
riennted respect, and beinic used by him to only three Hhades in 
Hell, namely, Farinaia degli L'berti, Cavalcanic dei Cavakanti, 
and BrvineltD Latini. In Piri". xix. 94 ct w^., we find Dante 
addrc»ing the shade of Pope ,\dnaa V with tu, aod on IcamiofC 
that he had been Pope (I. iji|, at once chanKinfc to mi. I'hat 
custom was, however, only in Dante's time. Respect in Italy is at 
the present ilaydenoltd by usinj; the third pcnon. with EUa or Lei. 
excepting when addrcK>>inK Koyntty, when "VoKtra Macktil " is 
the [unn uiti:d. Thtit, however, ib followed by the third pcmon 

t'r affirmarr Line 109 shows distinctly that this means an oath 
and nothing else. 

J We shall see in Pmrg. xsxi, 91-104, that souls, before passing 
from Purgatory into Patadiiiei aie imn>erscd in Lethe. 

Canto XXVI. Readings oh the Pttrgatorio. 


afTcction (for mc) »" I'«lhe (t.c. oblivion) can neither 
eHkcc nor make oltscure. But if thy word!> swore 
truly Just nnw, tell mc whiit in the re^BOti Ihul makca 
thee show in thy speech and in thy looks that thuu 
holdesC me dear ? " 

Dante's answer shows that his admiration for (luido 
was due far more to his great literarj- attainments as 
a poet, than for any personal regard for the man. 

Ed io a lui :—" I.i <lolci delti vostri 

Che, quaiito durcri 1' uito modcroOt* 
Faranno cari t ancnrji i loro inehioiitri.'*— 

And I to him : " Those ewcct diltien of yours, which 
Hs long as the modem use (of writing poetr^' in the 
vul^nt tongue) shall endure, will even make dear to 
me ihctr very ink." 

It will be well here to digress somewhat, and discuss the 
[two personages whose names arc next brouKht upon 
the scene. These ai-c Arnaut Daniel, and Giraud dc 
Rorneil, two pucts of the school of Provence, of great 
celebrity in their time. Arnaud. Arnauld. or Amaut 

*ruso madcrna: ScariasxJni drawn aitcnliiin to a parallel 
rnassiee in the I'ita Nucva. j! i<,: "A cotal cosa dichiarare, 
^■econao eh' i buono al jireiente, prima c da intendcic, che an- 
ticamente non crano dicitorl d' Amoic iii lingua votgaic, anzi 
eranu dicUori d' A marc certt pocti in linKun Intina. . . . E non 
£ molto numcro d' anni paualo, chc appaiiroiio prima qucati 
pocli volj^ari ; c)ic dire per ritna in volcitic lanio u (|uunl(i dire 
perveriii in latinn. xecondn skuna proporiionc. li sqroo chc sJa 
picciol tempo &, ch«, bc volemo tercarc in linttua d' Dm c in lingun 
di Si, not non Iraviamn c<uc dcltc an^j Io prctcntc lenipo per 
ccntoctnc|uania anni." 

t /-"(ird/iim riiri, etc. : Contnmt t hi k with Purg, xi, wj-qi}. where 
Dante makc-t Odrrisi rf' A^obbin say tbal. alth'>i!(;h Guido Caval- 
(3nti and Ouido Ouinicclli had hitherto ukcn all the x'nry of the 
language, yet there wan one already born who perchance would 
ftoon drive ihtm from their pre eminence, probably meaning him- 
JBclf. ScartHizini think; thai, in the present paasaK^, Dante is 
Iwishing somewhat to niodify the above words. 

Rtadingi oti Ihe Pttrgatorio. Canto XX\'I. 

Daniel, was one of the most noted troubadours of the 
12th centurj-, and is reportud ici have nourished be- 
tween I iBo and i2oa Very little is recorded of him by 
the earlier Commentators, but Petrarch speaks of him 
as having been one of the foremost poets> of that time. 
He lived in Provence in the time of Raymond Ber- 
engcr {the Ciood) Count of Provence, and is said to have 
died about ii8g. From Thf Troubadotirs, a History of 
Praveufal Life and Literature in the Middle A/^es, by 
Francis Hueffer, London, 1878, pp. 44-51, I extract the 
following; "It is well known that the works of the 
Troubadount were at an early period read and admired 
in the neighbouring country of Italy, and thai the poets 
in tho lingua x'nlgare reco^jnized in them at once their 
models and allies in the struggle against the pre- 
dominance oC Latin scholarship. Students of the 
l>ivina Commcdia. or of Petrarch's Tn'ottji, arc aware 
of the prominent position assigned to the Provencal 
singers among the poets of the world, and they may 
also remember that of the Troubadours themselves 
none h mentioned with higher praise than Arnaut 
Daniel. Petrarch * speakn of htm as the Gran maestro 
d' amore, and Dante, in his philological and metrical 
treatise De Vulgari Eloquio, declares himself indebted 
to Amaut for the Htructurc of scverat of his stanzas. 
The SeiHna, for instance, a poem of six verses, in 
which the final words of the first stanza appear in 
inverted order in all the others, is an invention of this 
troubadour adopted by Dante and Petrarch. , . . But 


♦S«e Petrarch, Tne»J» d' Amort, iv, 40-44: — 
" I'ra tutti il pfinvo Arnaldo l>Amello, 

Cr«n muctito d' mmot ; ch' all* sua terra 
AncoT fa onor cot mw (lir novo c bcllo." 

Canto XXVI. Reading on iht Purgatorio. 


a far more lasting monument has been erected to 
Arnaut in the immortal lines gf the PKc/ftf/ortfl. where 
Guido OuiniccUi, in answer to Dante's enthusiastic 
praise of his poetry, points to another shade as ' the 
ai'tful smith of his mother tongue' . . . This ... is 
ouF troubadour, who. when addressed, replies in pure 
Provencal, a language evidently quite famihar to 
Dante. The above-cited passage is generally con- 
sidered to give the clue to the apparently excessive 
admiratiun lavished on Amaut by the Italian poets. 
. . . The further question arises, what were the works 
on which Arnaut'& reputation as an epical poet was 
founded, and for the answer to this question we must 
again look in the works of the Italian poets. Pulct, 
the humorous author of the Morgante Maggiore, mcn- 
tiuns our troubadour twice amongst the writcrB of the 
Carlovingian epics . . . (and adds) that Angcio Poli- 
ziano called his (Pulci's) attention to Arnaut's work 
. . . Hut a still later and in one sense still more impor- 
tant testimonial to Amaut is found in Torquato Tasso, 
who, it appears, mentions him as the author of a poem 
on ' Lancelot.* For this enables us to connect our 
troubadour with a second and perhaps the divinest 
pai^sage in Dante's divine poem. The leader need 
scarcely be reminded that the story which kindles to 
open and conscious flame the silent passion of Fran- 
cesca da Polenta and Paolo Malatesta is a romance 
ot Lancelot . . . and nothing is more probable than 
that Dante should have thought of Arnaut Daniel's 
lost epic when he wrote the inspired lines that are in 
everybody's memory. Many poets might wish to rest 
their posthumous fame on such lines rather than on 
their own works ; but it may be inferred on the other 

3Q2 Rea^Hgs m the Purgatoriv. Canto xxvi. 

hand, that Arnaut Daniel — if he really be the author 
referred to — must have been a mighty mover of the 
heart to gain such a tribute from the lips of Franccsca 
da Kimini." Afier describing Arnaut as delighting in 
" motz oscurs " {dark words) and " rims cars " (dear or 
icarct rhymes), and equally far-felchcd similes the author 
adds: " Mis intentional obscurity and his manncnsm 
were largely imitated, but no less frequently attacked 
and travestied by contemporarj' poets and satirists. 
Petrarch's allusion»i to his 'novel speech' {dir novo), 
and Dame's expression ' smith of his mother tongue/ 
evidently allude to Arnaut's peculiarities of style. We 
can also quite imaf;ine how the great Florentine could 
admire a dark shade of melancholy, a bold originality 
of thought, and a hankering alter scholastic depth, but 
too nearly akin to his own mental altitude." 

G^rault, Girault, Guiraut. or Giraud de Bomeil, or 
Rornelh, " a celebrated troubadour of the spring-time 
of Provencal literature," flourished between 1175 and 
about 12ZO, and attained such repute, that among his 
contemporaries he was spoken of as the master of the 
Troubadours. He was born in the Limousin, at a 
village near Bxcidcul, not far from Pcrigueux, but a 
considerable distance from Limoges, and Scarlazxini 
thinks his being styled by Dante quel di Lcmosi, refers 
to the Province tA Limoimti rather than to the city of 
Limoges, Dante speaks uf him {De Vulg. Eloq. u, cap. 
2) as " the poet of righteousness," but, although Dante 
puts him on a lower scale than Arnaut Daniel, the very 
comi>arison would rather show that, in (he opinion of 
the public, the question was an open one, and Scarta^zini 
obseiTcs that there would be few at the present day who 
would agree with Dante's judgment in this matter, for 

XXVI. Headings rt» the Purgatorio. 


there can be little doubt that, as a poet. Girault de 
Borncil was greater than Amaut I>anicl. Girault ia 
said to have left eighty-two poetical compositions of 
genuine authenticity. 

We will now return to our subject, recoUectinE that 
Dante has just been lellins Quido (iiiinicelli that his 
love and affection for him are wholly due to the en- 
thusiastic admiration he feels for Guide's sweet lays. 

Like Oderitii d' Agnbbio (see Piirg. xi, 82-84) Ouido 
at once gives greater honour to another, and puinling 
out the shade of Arnaut Daniel, goeii on to say that, 
although some fools attempt to set Girault de Horneil 
on a higher pinnacle of fame than Arnaut, it ix only 
from the acclamations of the vulgar, that there could 
be any question of comparing Girault de IJorneil to 
Arnaut Daniel. 

- " O [rBte,"--di»>o,— "qursti ch' io ti Bcerno 
Col dito," — ed additd un spina innuiii, 
— " Fu migtior rabbro d«l p«rLjir materno.* 
Venu d' uitiorc; t e prtiae di roman^i 1 


*p»rUu maltrno : Amaut';! mother lonKue wnii of course 
Proven^nl, and Dunle- vhoMf' Ihift by making Gui<I>n GuinJcclIi 
compare him to Oirault dc Hnrncil, unather Prtn-en^*! poci, lo(, 
although born in the Limousin, hr was of the school of Pro- 
vence. " V. veramente a tempo del Guinic«lti I' arte del dire in 
pro»« ed in vctso cr» a>«ai piCi oltrc in frovcnca chc in Italia; e 
sulu cun Dantv CDminciA Ad e»scrc ultnitncntc " (Andreuti). 

t Veni d' amore : II is probable thai, a« "the poet of love." 
Arnaut would be of higher merit, in themimaiion nf Uante. than 
" (he poet of riehtoufcneM," a^ he st>'lcd Gtmull de llorneil. 

\ ^roir (li rt)iiutii:i : "There can indeed he no doubt that, in 
addition to hinfArnautV, fatne us a Ivrical sint^cr or tmubsdour 
proper, hii> equal c.vcctlcncc as a narrative puei h here referred 
tu, the word prvtt beinu UMcd. not in our moflcTti Meitse. but (or 
the rhymed couplets of the epic in coniradistinclion to the elabo- 
rate (itani» or vini of ihe love-sonu" (Tin Trtttilnidotirt, p. 4&). 
Sec also a Ictlci by Mr. Paget Toynbcc in Tlu Acadtmy^ April 
lilh, Itlil9. 


Readings on Ike Purgatorio. Canto xxvi 

Soperchi& tutti, c Ittxcia dir gli ilolli 
Che quel rli Lemosi cndon ch' nvanzi. 
A voce piik ch' al vtr drixzRR li volti, 
E cool ferrnun sua opinione 
Prima ch" arte o raf;ion per lur b' ascolll. 

"O my brother," said he, "this one that 1 point out 
to thee with my linger," and he pointed to a spirit in 
front, "was a belter artificer of his mothcr-lon^c 
(than I of mine). In veiscs of love and and in talcs of 
romance he surpassed all : and let the fooU talk on 
who ihink ihut he of [.imouKin excels him. They 
fpvc heed to rumour rather than to truth, and thuK 
they li.v their opinionR before they liaten to art or 

Benvenuto remarks on the above: "And note well 
here the most true opinion of our Poet, who so justly 
satirises ihc insane vulgar herd. For in every pro- 
fession we have seen it occur that many men inake_ 
false and vain assertions: and when examined bj 
persons of experience, as to whether they be acquainted' 
with such an art, or if they really have any opinion at^j 
all on the subject about which they speak so posiii\'elyJ^| 
they do not know what el&c to say than. * Evcrybody^^ 
says so ;' and thus they make use of the judgment o( 
the ignoi-ant multitude as their shield." 

Dante next proceeds to speak of the early Italian 
poel. I'*ia Guittone d" Are/zo. wlio in former days had 
had a £reat popular reputation, and quotes him as an 
instance of misplaced praise. What he says in effect 
is that, just as public opinion in Provence was fal- 
lacious in the matter of Oiraud de Uomeil, so did 
public opinion at Florence ko astray about Fra Uiut- 
tone d' Are/xo, until, through the opinions of experts, 
the real truth was arrived at. (iuittonc e\prcsscd_ 
beautiful thoughts, but his style v,a.f. not happy. 



fanto XXVI. Readingi On ike Pttrffatorio. 


Cob! fjrmoiti antichi di Guillnnc.* 

Di gtido in grido pur lui djindo jircgin, tsj 

Kin che 1' ha vinlo il vcr cor pii |icr«oiir. 

Thus, in old time, did niiiny with Guiltonc, their 
clamour giving ihe pre-eminence lo him alone from 
mouth to mouth, until the truth prevailed with the 
vast majority. 


* Guitloitf : Of him Nannucci {AtunuaU Lett. vol. i, p. ito) 
writes: "(iuilt»ne, the liori dopu In metit di qucxio vccola [)*■(■ 
>' i^**']! n8Ci|uc di nobilc stirpo in Santa Hirmina, borgo a due 
migTia d' Arciio; . . . Iv^li c cummuncmcnlc cKiamato Frs 
Ouitlone, non gil perchi foiwc Prate, ma pcrchc cia dell' Ordinc 
rcligioHo c mihtarc dc' Citvalicrt Gaudenti. II suu vcru nomc 
era Uuidn : ma posda, nvn si kb per quali lagioni, fu appellalo 
Uuittonc dalla voce giiUto (i/. uomo vite. abictto (porco.) h. 
voce nupniitana, ma uiala anchc tra nai . , . Guiltonc Kcrivcndo 
un Sonetlo a Mcsscr Oncsto Balogncsc, itchcrzu sul nomo di tutti 
e dxit, dicencio; — 

' Vostro nomc Mcucrc, t caro c onrata, 

Lo meo aiuai ontflsn c vil.'" 
Nannucci add* that Guitlonc wan a mo*t accompli»hc<l tinguist, 
and a raott elegant ncholur, bcini; at hutne in Laiin^ Troven^ai, 
Spanish and French. A ciintcmporar) (llencdcllo da Cckiiii) 
saya of him : — 

". . . . e quel Guittonc, 

Che fu piu dotto umai <hc 'I ver eredulo," 
Ke married a lady of Are /zo, but abandoned her and their three 
children to become a CataUerf Oauitcntt, and save himficlf up 
toiheniMiit zealuuN preachine cif rclijcion and peace; denuncia- 
tion of the L-nrruption of the limeB : and of the diawnsioriH of 
the Florentine Slate. Reins dcupoilcd of hia posscssioni by 
an unjuit kentencc^ he left Arezio and died at Florence in I2<J4. 
Hin poems arc ehieAy love t>onnet». t'eUareh, who frequently 
imitated him. classes hira with Danic and Cino da Ptatoja. 
Sec part a. Sow. itin :— 

" Ma ben ti prcK" chc 'n la tcr/a spcra 

Guitton lyuluti c meaner Cino e Dante. 

[■'ranccxchin rostro, c tuiln quclla ^ehicra." 
In the Trwnfo tV Amvre, ii, sr-jj. while lancifully depicting a 
"horila e verde piaKgia," on which are Bukcmblcd the FuKcan 
pociB who unK ot love before himself. Petrarch wriU*i:— 
" Beco Iljinte e Beatrice ; ecco SelvuKi;ia ; 

CcGo Cin da Pistoia; Guitton d' Aic^zd, 

Che di n»n csscr primo par ch' ira a};Kia." 


Readings on Ike Piirffafario. Canto KXVl. 

And now Guido Giiinicelli. after pratefully dcclininjf to 
avail himself of Dante's offer to rt-habilttatc his fame. 
and after bct^^ng that Dante will merely utter a short 
prayer on his behalf, dra\vs back, and disappears in the 

Or M tu hai xi ampio prtvilc^io, 

Che licito ti sia 1' andiirc al chiontra* 
Ncl qiiak i Cri^ln abalc del eollcgio. 
Pasli per mc un dir di un piitcmDstri). ijq 

Quttiito bisognu a noi di queato inondo. 
Dove potcr pcccar non 5 piu nonlro."— I 
Pw fonc per dur luvu aJtrut, kccoiicIo J 
Che pruGso avca, disparve per lo foco. 
Come per I' ac()ua it peace andando al fondo. 135 

*thioaro: "Cio% a 1b cliiuiiarA iicta de' beuti ; ctoA In para- 
ditu lo quale t chiimura dc' bcati, come lo chiosUo i dc' retik'toii 
chiuaura coniiolatona c rcfriKJtntoria. Kti t/nule, ciod chiostro, i 
Critto itbaU dtt ((dtrgii), imperf) che come l*abl»te(!padrve HtKnore 
dci mnnHci: cod Crintn via mitutiormcnlc f pndrc c bif;norc 
dc' be:iti " (Butij. Scarta/(i(ii rcmark« xh*X, in ilie «ailv days, 
of the Italian lanf;ua|;c, atiaU was a litlc uf Ihc hi^hcsl d^ignily, 
being frequently used for padre or liiut, and wafi auumed 'by 
princcn, HuRh Capel taking the title nf AtutU d» Farigi. 

^ Dovr poltr petfar non ( piU notiro; The pcnitcnU in l*ur- 
L'tttory are no longer liable to fall into ran. We may remember 
in Canto ai, 33. the »hndc> of the proud arc described as nol 
omiitinjc from the Lord'^ Prayer the urniencc about kadine 
into lemplHtion. faul cxpliininK that they use it for the tiake of 
thiiM.- who cemiiin behind them in the world. 

} ^r dar laciiallrui, uceiuio Chi prtaoav/a : I have here departed 
fruin Dr. Moore's tint lo follow Scartn/Hni. who quotes Taiilani 
in pullini: u cnminit alter attrui, and interpreting the pa»agc as 
1 have irjtriKlated it. Or. Moore puEs no cornrna into the sentence. 
I'hc more general punctuation is la put the comma after uteitdo, 
and to imefpret : " forxc per dare il Kccondo luogo, i.t. il luogo 
dupo lui> altrtii, cioi all' altru (Arnaldo Uanicllo) chc avea prvaaa 
dj fi." To this interpretation of attnii Fanfani very decidedly 

%C«m« P*T t dffWi', etc.: Compare the diaappcaranco into ibe 
mist of Piecarda de" Donati, Par. iii, m ;— 
■'Co»l parlofnmi, e poi comlncii: Avt 

Maria, cantando; c canlando vanto, 
Come per acqua cii[ia can grave." 

Canto XXVI. Readings on the Purgatorio. 


Now if thou hxst such ample privilege, that it it 
cmntcd to thcc to enter into Ihnl ClotKler (i.e. Para- 
dise}, in which Christ is the Abbot of the College, 
reptrstt to Him u PaternostcT on my behalf, in so faf 
»K is ncedfiil for an in thi« worM (of spirits) where 
power to sin is no lon^^cr ours." Then perchance 
to ^ve place to Home one else, whoever might be 
nearest to him, he vanished through the flanies, like 
a fish Koing to the bottom through the water. 

Dante's attention has natiintlly been attracted by Guide's 
tnthusiastic praise of Amaut, and, when Guido is out 
of siglil, h« draws as near as the flames will permit of 
his doing, and begs Amaut to reveal his identity, about 
which Outdo had left him in the dark. 

lo mi (cci «1 mostrato innan^i un poco, 
E di»M ch' a] ftUQ notne il mic disire 
Apparecchiava f;ra<iosA Ioca. 

I advanced a little towards him who had been pointed 
out, an J &aid that iny denire whk preparing , -in honour- 
able place for his nnme. 

That is to say : " 1 told him that my desire to know 
him was so great, that 1 should receive his name with 
especial affection." 

.<\rnaut replies in the Provencal tongue, tells Dante 
who he is, speaks with much contrition of his past 
life, and with bright hope of the joys of the life to 
come, and concludes, before vanishing in his turn, with 
a prayer to Dante, that he will in due time (by which 
he probably means when the time shall have come (or 
repeating a Paternoster for Guido Guinicciti) remember 
him in his pious intercessions. 

Ki comincio libcramcnte a dire : 

Tm m' ^titiit * vMXr4 cttrUt JtmtHt, 140 

* T4Ht m' ahilu : Compare /»/. xix, 37 : "Tanto m' £bel,c}iianto 
a le piac«," and ace my note on Ihio passage in Rtadingt on tht 



Readings on the Purgatorio. Canto xxvt. 

^w' icu Ho-tit ptusc, ni-m lutil a vos cobrirt 
Jtu SKI Arnaut^ qnt plor, t vai cantan, 

{tijtrno, vol. ii, p. 79. On ihiit anti other Ktmllar pau^ajECit where 
the word is introduced, compikre Benedetto Varchi (£.' HtrcoLiHO, 
Venice, tjSo. pp. ji, ja): [Queilion] "Come dircstc vol nella vostra 
lingua <|Ucllo, chc Tcrcn^in diuic ncllit latinA . . . munut ii'uirtm 
vrmilo t'crliu? [Aiuti'cr] AbbclliHCJ il dnno, n il preacnlc noslro 
cnlle parole: Ma Hantc, che voile (tirln allramcntc, (ormo un 
verbo da *< d' un nome Bgf;hiettivo, e d' un» prcpcMirione Utirtk, 
e dissc : — 

* Mai dare, e tnal tcncr la mondo pulcro 
Ha toltn loro, e poitti a qucMa zutTa ; 
Quale ella sin. parole non ci appukro.' 

—{Ih/. vii. s8-fio.) 
[^tieidViij Dile il vero, piaccvi ckH. n pftrvi bello cotcslo verba 
abfukro* . . . Voi pi^linte qui abbelttKf in Bit;nificazianc attiva, 
cioi per far bcllo, c di sopra quando allcgastc (|lic' vcrsi d> Dante 

(p- J»,i :— 

' Opera naturale i ch' uom favella ; 

Ma cosI o coai, natura lascia 

Poi fare a voi aecondo che v* abbelli.' 

—{Par. x»vi, tjo-iji) 
parr che sia poHta in KiKnifJca/ionc ncutra, ciai per piaccrc, c 
per parer bello. [.liiiuYrJ Voi dite vern, ma quelle i dcila quarta 
coneitiKBzione. o vero nnanicra de' verbi, c qucsto i delU prima ; 
quclla hI pnne assnlulantcntc, clot «cnza alcuna panicclla innanii, 
c qucMo ha Hcmprc ilavanti at, i mi', o li, offt, sccondo le pcrsonc 
che favcllano, o delle quali si Tavella. Quuto i tl modo di dire 
']'n!H;ano, come mosira Dante siesso, induccnda nclta fine dtl 
XXVI Canto del I'urgaiono Arnaldi) Danicllo a dire Provenzal- 
mente :- — 

' Tan m' abclin votrc cortois ctcman/ 
e g\i Altri veni. che scguitano. bcnchj per mio aviso muio 
«cnt(i acorettamente: l>ice«i eiiandio. come il Koccaccic neU 
]■ A<mfo.-— 

'De'quai In tcrM via piil »' abbelliva.'" 
1 cannot icfrain from quoting Mr. Care>-'t note on Arnaut'a word* : 
" Arnatit i« here made to speak in hta own tongue, the Provencal. 
According to Dante (D* Vtilg. Blex]. 1, cap. 8), the Provencal wa« 
one l«n{;uai;e with the Spanish. \\'Tiat he iaj-s on this subject la 
*o curiout, that the reader will nut be displeased if I givv an 
abstract of it. Dante first makes three great divisiona of the 
European languaKcx. 'One of these cxicndN from the mouth of 
the Danube, or the lake of Mxotis, to the western limit* of UnK- 
land, and is bounded b^* (he limits of the Prencb and Iialianii, and 
by the ocean. One idiom obtained o*«t the whole of this space : 
but was artcrwardtt subdivided into the Sclavonian, Hungarian, 

Canto XXVI. Readings on the Purgatorio, 


Teutonic, SAxotir English, and the vernacukr tongues nf seversl 
oilier people, unc bJKn rciDaining to all. that lhc>' uhc the affirm- 
alive ;"» (our EnKli»t» ay). 'Ilic whole of Bumpc bcEinninK from 
Ihc Huni^arlan limits, and stretching tnwardH the cant, has a 
Hccnnd Wiom, which reaches »tiil further than the end of IJompc, 
into Asiu. This ill tile Greek. In nil that romainn of Kurope, 
there is a third idium, subdivided into three dialccta, which inay 
be sevcmlly disiinguished byitie usecilthcafTirmativc«,or, 01'. and 
si : the flmt xpohen b)- the Spaniards ^he next by the (-'rench, the 
third bv the Lntin* (or Italian^]. The tii>i oecupv the western 
part of southern liuropt, bc(;innin;; from the limitH of the 
Genoese. The third occupy the aaslcrn part from the said 
limitH, asfar. that in, aa to the promontory of Italy, where the 
Adriatic »eu btKins, and to Sicily. The second arc in a manner 
northern with respect to theic. for Ihey have the Germans lo 
the east and north, on the west Ihcy sre bounded bv ihe English 
8CB and ihc mountains of Aragon. ai>don the south by the people 
of I'rnvenceandlhe declivity of the Apennines.' -And /6iJ.,cap. x., 
'Each nf these three.' he observes. ■ has it* own claims (o dis- 
tinction. The excellency of the French language consists in its 
hcinK best adapted, on sccnunt of its facility and agrecablcneui, 
to |lrI>^c narration (c/wit^iitiJ ratactum, iive invenlum tit wf thIhuu 
pmaKU'v. \auni til ; arjd he instances the books compiled on the 
gests of the Trojana and Romana. and the delightful Adventures 
of KinK Arthur, with many other histnriesand works of instruction. 
The Spanii^h {or Prnvcn^l) may boast of itahavini; produced such 
as filBt cultivated in this, as in a more perfect and oweet lBni;uai;e, 
the vernacular poetry: amonx whom arc Pierre d' AuvcTKnc. and 
ethers more ancient. The privileges of the I.alin, or Italian, are 
two ; first, ihst it may reckon for its own tho»e wntcrs who have 
adopted a more sweet *nd subtile style of poetry, in the number of 
whom arc Cino da Pistoja and his friend : and the next, that its 
writers seem to adhere to «r((iinjffsrt'.»/ rulet of gnimmar. anA in 
so doin^ give it, in the npinion of the tntelliKent, a very weighty 
pretension to picfcrcncc." 

*Coiiii'i>ifiri : Scarta/cini (/fifi;. Min.'i says he has followed the 
version of Fr- Dicz iL4t)en un4 KVrfte dtr TretAadoun, p. 347. 
nt i), whom he considen ~il piij profondn conoscitorc riclla 
letteratura provcnzalc." In the version of Dicz, instead of 
Coniiroa vti, etc.. the reading is Car, sitol vii, etc., i.t. '' For when 
I see my nasi folly," etc. I find roHiimioin the Griiii Oitionario, 
as signifying " Chi 4 in pcnsicro mole»to," i.t> " troubled in one's 
mind." Dante da Majuno u«cs the word, in the CamoHf bc^inninK 
TuHetk'tofion m^i«, in PoeiiJtl Prima Saalo ddla Ling. //.vol. ii, 
p. 44* ■' •*• 4 •— 


Reading on tht PUrgalorio. Canto xxvi. 

B tv* Uttat la hi * iju' ttptr, dtnan. 

Qut cm xuidii ai sotn de V t.vAlina + 
Sovinha wu a tempi dt ma dvhr, 
Poi »' 3SC08C ncl foco chc gli alTina. 

He readily thus began to speak: "Your courteous 
request pleuscs me so much, thut 1 neither can nor 
will hide myself from you. I nm Arnaut. who weep 
and !^o sinj^ing, aortowfully I contemplate my past 
folly, and joyfully I sec the bliss I hope for in Ihe 
fiilure, Now 1 entreat you by that Power, which 
f;iiidc»you to the eummit of the stairway, be mindful 
in due time of my sutteringi." He then hid himself 
in the fire that is refining them. 

Ozanam who i^ives almost identically the •tame text 
as that in Dr. Moore's edition, of the above I^-ovencal 
lines, translates them as follows: " Tant me plaJt voire 
courtoise demande, que je ne puis ni ne veux me cacher 
avous. Je suis Arnaud qui pleureet vaischantant : je 
vois avcc chagrin ma folic passcc. Mais jc vois joycu\ 
dcvant moi la joic que j'cspcrc. Or, jc vous prie par 
cctte vcrtu qui vous guide au sommet de I'escatier. 
!iouvene2-vous en temps utile de ma douleur." 

" E viMo aggio di core 
Vcnir gajo v giojoso 
In );■■>' pi>fig>are, c 'n tuita bcntnanxo." 
•/« wi : Die« reads h jOm, '■ the day." 

iguida at vm de V tuahna : As will be seen on the neict pace, 
Raynouard rcadft-. Gtiiila at icm sem /rnih e itm fitJrfut, i.<. "who 
Knidcs you to the summit without ctild and without heat." But, ati 
Scarla/2ini poinln out, in all the itinuntain of Purgaloty there i> 
no mention of Cold ou-currinj; as a penanec, ot in any olhei' 
way ; and no one lan prciend ihat Ihe I'owcr ittijitclta twinr j cuided 
the PociN up Xa Ihe summit without heat (icns caluuiy seeing that 
the very next phenomenon ihcy were to encounter in that %-ery 
ComitiL' wab, that ihcy should ihcmaelvtB have to pau through 
the scorching heat o( the flamcB. 

Canto XXVI. Readiwf^ on the PHrgalorio. 401 

Nearly cvcrj* edition gives a different version of these 
lines. Scaitaziini, in his Leipzig commentary, pp. 
546-548, quotes eight different renderings, besides that 
of Diez. which he adopts. 

liaynouard was of opinion that the text should be as 
follows : — 

"Tan m'abellis vostre cortes deman, 

Ch' icu non me pucsc ni m voil a vos cobrirc; 

Jeu »ui Arnautz, chc plor c vai cantan ; 

Consiros, vei la pas^ada follor, 

E vei jftuxen lo joi qu" esper denan ; 

Aras vos prcc, per aquella valor 

Que us guida al som sens freich c sens calinat 

Sovegna vos atenprar ma dolor," 
"II n'est pas un de<i nombreux manuserits dc la 
Divina Commedia, pas imc des editions multipliccs 
qui en ont ^tc donnces, qui ne prcsente dans Ics vers 
que Dante pr<-tc au troubadour Arnaud Daniel, un 
texte d^figurfi et devenu. dc copie en copie. presque 
inintclligible. Cependant j'ai pens^ qu'il n'^tait pas 
impo&siblc de rctablir le tcxte de ces vera, en com- 
parant avcc soin, dans les manuscrits dc Dante que 
pos!^edent les dt^pdts publics de Fari^, tuutirs les 
variantcs q^u'ils pouvaicnt fournir, et en les choisissani 
d'apri-s Ics regies grammaticales et Ics notions Icxico- 
graphiques dc la languc des troubadours. Mon espoir 
n'a point ixk irompc, ct sans aucun secours cunjectural. 
sans aucun dL-pIacemcnt ni chan^cmcnt de mot», je suia 
parvenu, par le simple choix des variantes, A retrouver 
Ic lexic primitif. tel qu'il a dii fitre produit par Dante" 
(Raynouard, Lexiqwe Raman. Paris, 1830, Svo, torn, i, 
p. xlii). 



Readings on the Purgatttrio. Canto xxvti. 

CANTO xxvn. 


Fkom the ninth Canto, until the close of the scene last 
described, Djintt: has been describing Purg;Hory proper, 
divided into seven Cornices, in which the seven capital 
Kins arc purged in different ways. From now to the end 
of the Canlica, wc shall have the description of the Post 
Purgatorio, wherein is situated the Paradise of Delights, 
figurative of the Church Militant. 

Bcnvenuto divides the Canto into four parts. 

In the First Division, from vcr. i to ver. 45, Hantc 
describes the appearance of an Angel, who purges htm 
from Sensuality, the seventh and last sin : and invites 
him, with the ai<^sistance of Virgil, to pass through the 
fire into the Terrestrial Paradise. 

In tht Second Division, from vcr. 46 to ver. 87, he tells 
of his passage through the fire. 

In the Third Division, from ver. 8* (0 ver. 108, he re- 
lates how night came upon the Poets; how they slept 
on the stairway ; and Dante's dream. 

In the Fourlk Division, from ver. log to ver. 142, is con- 
tained Virgil's farewell exhortation to Danie. 

Cnnto xxvii. lieaJittgi on the Pursatoyio. 


Divisiim I. — Before speaking of the Angel, Dante 

describes the hour of the day by the position of the 
Sun. According to the Cosmography of the time, 
when the Sun is first dawning on Mount Sion, it is 
mid-day (the beginning of the Nonesj at the Ganges; 
and consequently at Purgatory, which is the Antipodes 
lu Jerusalem, the Sun is about to itet. If the Sun is 
at the Ganges in Aries at mid-day, the night would 
naturally be at the Ebru in Libra, at midnight. 

The Angel uf God appears to Dante, rejoicing that 
he had accomplished his last purification, that is, from 
the vice of Sensuality. 

HIcuiD'C quandu i primi rii^i vibrs 

Ui dove il sua Fatlore * il ungue s.purfie, 
Cftdcndo Ibc^I>'^ *ntti> 1' kIm Libn, 

E r onde in tiange da nonii riarse, I 

*/.i) doir il suo /''ii/Zfrr, clc. : Thin of counv means Jerusa- 
lem, where ChriHl, without Whom wti» not anjthing made that 
was made {SI. JtAa \, j), ahed Hi» precious Blood nn Calvary. 

f Ibtro, etc.: In the lime of Dante, to use the expressiun 
" from the Cl)r<i to the Gango* *' >"**> cquivalt-nl to aayinj; " from 
one end m the other of the inhabited world." Compare Juvenil 
(iaf. 1, 1):— 

" Omnibus in lerris, qnK sunt a Gadibu> usque 
Auroram el Gsngcrn." 
Compare also a paitsaKc, nearly identically similar to these open- 
ing lines ol the Canto, in I'arg. ii. i-6. 

[ r ouiU in Gauge Ja mmn riant : Dr. Moore (Time HtftrtWH, 
PP- 7^ 7J> "ci^ "'*" P- 109) "'V* t'^*' thi" p>0Kaj;c " i* interesting 
piuily from the completcncsi with which D^intc Roei through 
Ihcte calculations of synchronism, but still more from the vana- 
tions of reading nuiia, Nuovd, and iiMnn) in 1. 4. 1hcM; iire 
Inwruclive, becaune it is clear that the comparatUety unuBual 
word nuna wan not understood by the cupyiiilk, or at any rate 
they were all adrift in regard to its mcanin); as here cmpliiyed. 
Consequently «omc read f^Qva. This, being quite unintelligible, 
led 10 a furthci alteration nut«, and llicn unce more da wuh 
altered into d\. This gtive a Kramraaliciil «cnHc at any rate, but, 
when we cume to attach u mennini; lo the words, the result ix a 

CC 2 

^ Headings on the PHrgatorin. Canto xxvij 

SI MuvA il sole ; onAe i\ |;iomu sen giva, 
Quaado r Angel di Hio* lieto ci apparsc. 

As when he darts forth his Br£t quivering rays on the 
spot where his Maker »hi:d His blood, white Ebro is 
sinking beneath tlic lofty Libra, and the waters of the 
Ganges are being scorched by the noonday hcnt, so 
stuud the Sun ; and therefore the day was departing, 
when (jod R Angel, full of gladne^is, appeared to us. 

In the words of the Beatitude (St. Mait. v, 8), c 
pecially appropriate to the occasion, the Angel pro- 
nounces an Absolution, not alasl for Virgil, but for 
Oantc and Statius ainnc. These two Poets, having 
now been purged from the seven mortal ^na, have 
qualified themselves to ascend to the Terrestrial 
Paradi&e. where they will have a vision of CliriRt, an 
thence ascend still higher. 

Stktenient false and nonscnsic&l. sinee it prstctically would de? 
Kfibc aUTiri«c, i.t. the lighl burning forib di nuorc, an takini; 
]dacc Dt the Uangctii at ihc name time ns at Jerusalem (sec tl. i 
and 2), which is manifcslly absurd. The corrupt feadintpi here 
(M is often the cnse) have a larRe majority of MSS, on tlieir 
■idc, in MDcnewhal the followiriK pronorlionti . . . noiw in 65, 
Nova in 77, n«vo in 64 MSS. With the true reading aan^, the 
interpretation piocccdK quite simply a& before. It vraa ttunrijte 
in Jeruialem, coniequently niidnight in Spain; (noic how Libra 
im u«cd here exactly as m Pur^. ii. 5, to indicate the middle 

fnint of night while the Sun is in Aricn at the vernal Equinoxj. 
t wa> thercfnre naon at the Ganges, and consequently {<mJ*, 
■H Danlc concludes in 1. 5) it was Hunael, or the day was de- 
parlinjdin ftiri^atvry." 

*t Angtidi Dto: On this Cornice alone there are two Anft^ls, 
one on each side of the Ramc ; this one is the UKual ijuardian 
of the Ccirntcc— the Angel of Purity. Scarlaitini thinks the 
other must be the AnRcl Warder of the TcrrcMrial Paradinr. 
See Pictro di Oanle on this pusuge: "In principin noctis 
quando ut plurtmutn committitur et inculeiicil vitium cl crimen 
luKuriosi tgni», fiogii rc inilti cl duci ah Angelo, id est ah judicio 
conscicntiic, el a V'irgitio, id est ab judicio rationi«, codem 
tempore in flammatn et inccndiimi coRscientiic d rcprchcnaionta 
talia vitiL" 


Canto XXVII. Readings on the PurgaUirio. 


The Angcl now invites them to pass on, but says 
that they must first go through the flames. 

Puor dclla fiamma atava. in sulla riv«,* 
E canlai a ; lUiUi ntunJo mrdt, 
\n voce as»ai piu chc la nontra vtva.t 

Poicta : — " Piil non si va, k pria non raordcj 10 

Antme »ante, il foco: cntratc in es*o, 
Bd al canturdi Ih non siatc Mrdc"— 

Ci diiisc. come noi gli futnmo prcsHo : 

Perch' io divcnni tal, quando lo intni. 

Quale h colui chc nella fo»u i mciaai 15 

*in siilla rivit : Of ihe three line* in thix ttr:itsa, I'erc/ {op. cil. 
p. i<i7, ft sftj.j obecrventhAt I. 7 indicam the coirnletcness of 
tlic i'lirity, whii;h no hiistitc Bame ean injure, an<l its »ccare 
habitation in ftpoti that arc iTiscccBKibk to the wicked. Line 8, 
while alludinK to the Hcalitude; " tSltned arc Ihe pure in htarly 
^or they ihali sa God." also alludes to the abode in which Turily 
' u Reneraled. Line g is full of lov« and einquence. Some have 
Idcscribcd the voice as ihc best part of human life, and ccrtninly 
the perfeelion or htiman life ii &h<iwn in ihc purity of the voice. 

tnjff iisiiti piii ch< (a nostra viva : We arc to undeistand that 
the voice oithc Angel of Purity wati clear, distincl. harmoniout, 
and mueical. ferei rcn^arki that we have here a direct cnn- 
Irast with the stammering wt>ma,n in Pnrg. xix, 7. who is the 
type of Concupiicenee : — 

"Mi vcnnc in sogno una femmina balba," 
We may notice loo that, in IL 4i-45 ^^ '^'" Canto, the Purity of 
the voice of the Angel of Ihe l.ovc of (lod is inHlinclivcly eon- 
tra»lcd with that of iWe ftmmina balba : — 

"Qiinnd' in udi*: 'Vcnitc, qui si varca,' 
Paflarc in nindo soave e bcnigno, 
Qual non si sente in quenla mortal mnn:a.' 
tt idds that the difTercncc tn the types of voice noted by Dante 
in poem would nifer food for the most intcrcsliiiK ob»crvatioiii. 
Dante had an exquisitely hne ear, and one of the moat touching; 
features in hJs rem i nine en u en of the fricndn he meets with ih their 
voice. Let il suffice (a remember what he relates about Ca&clla 
in Purg. ii, 85, KFi, and 1 ti-tt4 ; nnd about Forexe. nxiii. 4J-43- 

Ja* pria nvn miirrf* . . . if /iho : Scarta/zini quote* the fol- 
towinf;: "Si per cordis munilitiam lihidinis flatnma non ei- 
linguiiur, incassum quxlibct virtulcn oriuntur" (Gic^. Magn. 
MiiH4lium, lib. xxi, cap. 12). 

%(^iutit i iiJtii ch( ntUa fcua i uuuo: Some have tried to ex- 
Iplain this iiiniply to mean that Dante became as pale a* i» a 


Headiitgi on the Pitrgatorio. Canto xxvit. 

Outaidc the flame on Ihc extreme edge (of ihe Cor- 
nice) was he standing, and chanted : Beati muntio 
corde (RiesKcd arc ihcy of a pure heart), in a x'oice 
far more mi^lodious than ours. Then: "No one 
can iidviincc farther. Hunctified kouIw, if the 
fire afilict not : enter into it, and be not deaf to the 
chant beyond it," said he to us, as he drew nigh unto 
him : whercAt I became, when I heard it, as one who 
is placed in the execution -pit. 

Uantc is paralysed with fear: and all the terrible 
scenes he has witnessed, of suffei^rs executed at the 
stake, recur to his mind with horror. 

In «». k man cammetwc, mt protcsi.* 

Guardanda il foco, e immasinando forte 
I'cnani ctirpi i^Wt vcduti itccesi. 

With interclaspcd hands I stretched myself upward, 
looking at the fire, and vividly recalling human 
bodies that in past times I had seen burning fat the 

cort>»c when ptRced in the graw, but ScBrtaxciRi feds ccitain 
that I>anlc is [IcHL'ribinj:; himself na a li\-inf; man, in the fc*r of 
immediate death by the Form nt execution called in tht>sc days 
frtifviXK'"""- whith consisted o( planting the condemned ii»- 
bB^^n head riftwnwafriB like n vine in a hole duKin the varlh, 
and then choklnt; him to death by filling up the hole. See 
/it/. :iix, 4S-JI- ^n *vhich sec the CDmmenl r>( the (Mimo, who 
nays this mode of punishment wa» more particularly applied to 
ircuchcfitUK aikvaSHii». The old decrees of Florence tay: /1i> 
MEfiitui flenUliir e4i/tiu dnrtum, ita quoii morutur. See kiadi»gt 
on Ih4 Ittjemo, vol. ii. p. Si. 

* /ii (», U mtiH lommrMt, mi froUit: 1 find the Tuscan Com- 
iiicnlatorit, »uch aa Fiaticclli, Caaini, Tnrraca and nthcra. favonr 
the interpret at inn uhich I now substitute (or thai in my previous 
editions. Fraticclli saj'*: "Mi disleii colla persona, commct- 
Icndo InKicmc Ic niani, n insercndn Ic dila dcti' una in quelle 
ilcir altra, e riviillandonc li- palmc *ll' infjiii. tn attp d' unmo chc 
Ma pcrple»«." Tph aca KondcnnnK the interpret attun which I used 
before, observing : " L>a coslruzione ; mi prvttii in iu It mun com- 
nuiit non darebbe un' imagine ben chiara, CKAtta, di cid ehe 
Dante fc«c." 

Canto XXVI i. litadings on Ihc Purgatorio. 


It is worthy of notice that there must have been 
something personal here in Dante's horror-struck feel- 
ings, for we may remember that he had himself been 
condemned by contumacy to be burnt alive. Deaths by 
lire were not so unfrcqucnt but that Dante may have 
witnessed such terrible scenes. 

Virgil and Statius turn to him in kindness and 
sympathy, and Virgil reminds Dante of how he escorted 
him through all kinds of danger in Hell, and urges 
Dante to trust him now. He further encourages him by 
demonstrating that the lire will only bum, but will not 
consume him. 

Virgil's peniuasions arc, however, as yet totally un- 
availing to overcome Dante's terrors 

Vobcrsi vcfBO mc It buonc scorie. 

li ViT);iliu mi disnc: — '■ t'i);liuol xnio, 
Qui pu6 easer tormento, ma non mortc* 

Ricordati, ricordali . , . c, sc in 

Sopr'citKo Uerion t li (ruidai lalvn, 
Che fard ora pfc»so piit a Dio ? 

Crcdi per certn chc, k dcntro all' alvo 

Di qucbta namcna stc*M ben mill' anni. 



*noii morit: The fire of Purgatary isijuitc different from that 
in our ■world, for it bufna without cortsuminR. The fire on thin 
Cornice signilics the chastisement of the flesh— abstinence, and 
praycT— by means of which our flesh h mortified, and con).uni«d, 
as it were, on the altar of God. .-\n, therefore, the abstincnte on 
earth Bfflii:ti and iiiortirics the (lc»h, but ilocn nut dntroy, tiu doe* 
the fitc of purification bum without consuminK- See St. Gregory 
{of. cit.) : " Dum cBrnBlis vita coniKitur, ct usque ad abblincntiK 
atque oraliotiiK istuilium n perfieientibus perveniirttir, [|ua9.i jafn 
in altari varo incenditui : ut indc umnipotcntis Dei Kacrificium 
rcdolcal, undc priun culpa dikpticcbat." 

T So[>t' niif Gcrion .■ It mil"! be rcmenihered that sofr' tsto has a 
much more emphatic iiiitnificHtton than merely if^tu. Scartafdiil 
render* it: "perBina sul dosso di Gerionr." Vireil is here iv- 
mindinK lljinlc of one uf the mofncntic uf i;fealet>l danffcr fiom 


Readings o» tfu Purgatorio. Canto xxvil. 

Non ti potrcbbc far d' un capel calvo.* 
B :ic 111 crcdi foi-Hc ch' in t' ingnnnt, 

Palli v<r lei> e fxtti far cTcdcnza t 

Con II' lue mani al Icmbo dc' tuoi p«nni. 30 

Ton p& omai, pon gii ogni tcmcma. 

Vot;;iti in qua, c vieni oltre sicuTOu" — 

Bd io pur fcrmo, c contro a coscie'nza.t 

My kind Conductora turned towards me, and Virgil 
said to me; "My Son, here there may be torment, 
but not death. llcttiJnk iliec, bethink thee . . . Io if 
1 was able to Ruide thee safely upon the very (back 
ol) G«yon, what will I not do now when w> much 
nearer to God ? Believe for certain that, wcrt thou 
even to remain within the bosom of tht& llame for 

which he cxlrtcalcd hitn in Hell. See /«/. xvii, ]!(.Itil. where 
Ditntc'v terror at the aiglit of Geryon ih vividly depicted : — 
> ''Quill i colui, tn' ha »1 presxo il riprc/Ko 

Delia quartana, cli' ha gti I' unghic xmortv, 
K trenia tiittn pur guardando il msa, 
Tal divcnn' io." 
TnmmkKe'o parmfihrusCK Virgil's words thua : "Se It salvai dalla 
Frndc. pcHHinno d«' mostri, chc vonduccva all' infcrnalc msltiia, 
c per r aria, nuotando ; come non ora ? " 

* tafd mtm : Compare St. Luke ixi, 18: "But there shall not 
nn hair of your head perish." 

ffuiti far cttitrnxa ; Sec I'm:, dflia Crutea, K.V. er^tata,'^ 27 : 
" SiiRgio, fri'vii, 1.^1. txpcrimtnlum." Brunonc Biancht lays that 
far la ertitma was an cxprcH^ion used in former day* about one 
who tatted the viclualii at the tabic of a prince, to iruurc their 
not ticing puiKoned. Ctimpnre MorganU MtRsiort, avi, &t. 24; — 
" B scmprc tli sua man wrvl I marchesc 
Musime Antes, con molta m-erenzia, 
Di coppa, di collcllo, c di credcnKia." 
And Ihid. xix, »1. 139: — 

" E d' ngni COM, chc 'n tavola vienc, 
Sempre faceva la credenza. e '1 nactiio." 
Buti eommsntn thus upon the text : "Crcdcnaa, cioi c*perlen<ta 
la<|uale fa credere," CV<i'^>i:(t is now the word for a" sideboard." 
Xcoittroa foiciema : Scartaziini Thinks Dante ix here alltidiriK 
to the difficulties a man cncoumci& in overcoininj; the aitaclcB of 
ConcupiRccnce before he can apply himi^lf to correct it, and 
mortify il by worthy decdn. " fcr abstinent lam varnia vitia sunt 
CJitinsucnda " (St. tjreg. M^yr. lib. xx, 41). 

Canto xxvii. Iieadmg$ <m the Purgatorio. 409 

fiitl a thousand years, it could not make thee biild of 
a single huir And if perchance thou thJnkest that 1 
am deceiving thee, step forward tawardx it, and make 
the vxperinienl mth thtn« own hand» upon the hem 
of thy Kannents. Lay aside, from this momcnl, lay 
aside all fear, turn this way, and come onward in all 
Bccurity." Vet atill 1 stood motionieKH in &pite of 
conscience (which admonished me to obey). 

His conscience was telling him to perform what his 
unerring Leader (writcc guiila) prescribed fnr him. 

Virgil now, with knowledge of the soft side of Dante's 
nature, has recourse In an artifice to get round him and 
urge him forward. 

Quando mi vide star pur fenno e duro.* 

Turbaio un poca, dine :- -"Or vedi, ligliD, 35 

Tra Beatrice e It iqucsto muro," — 

When he saw mc still stand f»st iind stubborn, »oine- 
what troubled he said : " Now look, my Son, between 
Beatrice and thee is this wall." 

VirKil's reasoning, which concludes with the sort o£ 
persuasive banter that a parent or a nurse uses to a 
reluctant child, is successful in uvercomin^ Dante's 

Com« al name di TUbc t aperse tl ci|;1io 
Piramo in sulta monc, e riguardolla. 

*d«'v: Compare St. Thoma" Aquinas (Summ. Tfienl. parv ili, 
supp], qu. i, art. 1): "lllc qui in suo sen»u pcrscvcrat, rigidus, 
eidurui per aimilitudincm vacatur; skut iiiruni in maicrialibuK 
dicitur quAd non nedit tsctui ; unde et franf;i (licitur nliquiK 
quando a buo scn^u divcllitur.'' 

t Titbe: Thin alludes to the well. known story of Pyramun and 
Ttiisbc, two lovers in Babylon, whose tragic death at the foot of 
the mulbtiry tree, which up tu that time had hnrnc white fruit, 
caused it thereafter for evermore to bear purple fruit. Sec Ovid, 

Ufi. iv. 145-46: — 

" Ad nomen Thiibcs nculo* jam mnrte gravalo* 
Pyrunius crcnit, viaaquc rccondidit ilia." 
Benvenuto sees close anatomy between the loves of t'y">i""**nd 
Thisbe, and those of Dante and Beatrice. 



Readiitgs <mi the Purgatority Canto xxvit. 

Allor che il gelso divenld vermiglio ; • 
Ctni, la mia dureura falla Kolla.t 40 

Mi volsi al Mivio Duca, tidendo il numc 

Che nella mentc «cmpre mi rampolla. J 
Ond' ei croll6 la fronte,^ e diMc: — "Come ? 

Volemci Mar dl qua > "— indi sorrtHe. 

Cnmc aJ fanciul si fa ch' t vinto al pamc.H 45 

As, at the name of Thisbe, Pyramus when at the 
point of dc<ith, opened his eyes and looked upon 
her. at the time when the mulberry was chani^cd into 
purple ; »n did I, all my KttibbomncKS being softened, 
turn to my sa^e Conductor, when ! heard the name 
(of Beatrice) which is ever KurKing up in my mind. 
Whereupon he shook his head, and said: "'Well! 
arc we going (o remain on this side ? " Then he 

*ilgeb<i Jiwnii vermiglio: Thiii in descriSccI by Ovid. \ftt*m. 
iv, 55>i66. Thiitbe. before killing herself, ullcm a prayer which 
is answered by the ^ods (II. ifx), t6j) : - 

" Vota tanicn ictigerc deos, ictigerc parcntca: 
Nam color in ponio esl, ubi pcnnaturuit, alcr." 

fioUii, the same as eidn<oU (yielding); ot amndnole (flexible, 
supple). Compare liij. xvi, 38 : F.ita lecti sallo, Ihii yicldinf; sandy 
spot. Anil Pu'K. V, 18: — 

" J'crchi la foe" 1' un dcir altro ineolla." 

\nmpolla: Compare Purg. v, 16. 17: — 

"Chi Hemprt 1' unmo in cui penMcr rampolla 
Sopra pensicr, da »i dihiOKa il segno. " 
lluti interprcia the |iaM«B|;c in the text: " Sctnprc nc la menle 
mia si rinnuovai perd che quanto piii 1' odo riccrdarc, tanto 
majcKiorc dciidcrio di Ici mi cmcc." And Andrcoli : " Mcliv 
nuovi ramrwlli dt amoroiti ed alii penaieri." 

^troUi la frvnle : The Vatican MS. reads here, tndb Im Uti», 
but ihc t>la. Crnce, Caetani, Cassineac, and the Pint Four Edilitmg 

Wpomt : As wc hav'c before noticed, ponie or fomi' means iiay 
fruit KTOWingon a tree, not necresarilyan apple, as snme translate 
il. The proper word lor iippic n aula. On the paaaagc in the 
text I.andiii') writes : " Spcssn intcr^icnc chc il fanciullo ricusa di 
vcnitc itrf ii(>6i((ir« givr fuu;i' (atita 1 ma vn vM ^ mosiro \if he bt 
jAmrn] o mtla, o pcra od altro pnmr (fr«if], va eti tibbidtsce." 
N.n.— The Landino of 1451 rca(lK"uti ubbtdire;" that of 1484 
reads " ad," 

Canto XXVII. Reattingi on the Purgatorio. 

41 1 

smiled, as one does to a child that han been con- 
ijucrcd by the (promise oO ffuit. 

Division II. — -Dante now relates his successful pas- 
sage through the dreaded tiames. He first tells how 
Virgil, to obviate the possibility of any further want 
of decision nn his part, walked into the tire in front 
of him, and begged Statius to bring up the rear. Up 
to that moment Virgil had been walking first, Statius 
second, and Dante third. .As soon, however, as ihcy 
enter the Terrestrial Paradise, it is Dante who Icadii 
the way. Dante describes his terror and sufferings 
by a somewhat extreme hypcibolc. 

Virgil endeavours to distract his attention from the 
flames by speaking to him of Beatrice. 

' Poi denlro al loco innanfl mi si misc. 
Pregando Staiio chc vcniKsc rdro, 
Che pria per luni^ »irad> ci diviw. 
Come fui dcmto, in un bogiicnic vclro* 

Gittato mi xarei per rinlrcKcnrmi, 50 

Tant' era ivi lo inccndio scn/a metro. 
I-i> dokc I'arirc mio per confartarmi 
Pur di BcMlricc ra|;ionando andava. 
Diccftdo : — " Gli occhi suot f rIA vedcr panni." — 

*hogi'uHU vttrii : Hcnvenuto Mjr* that Danl« has well imaftined 
»o tntcnite « Hrc hein(; neGcasa.ry to purge out ao much vitked- 
ncss. Glass at white hcut was suppi>»ed tu be the k''*^*'"'' heat 
imaginable, and ihat was in Dantc'ii ntimation bs cold vatcr 
compared to that of the Iitc in furgulory. ATiosIo hac iniilaied 
lhi« pasMX^ in Orl. Fur. viii, at. 30. where he aaya of the burning 
aanda on a ccilain shore i — 

"In modo r aria c 1' arena nc bollc, -^ 

Che saria Iroppii a lar Itqiiidci il veiro." 

f (lit iK<hi Mtoi: Uuti aavft: "Li occhi di Heairice Koon Ic 
raKidni snttiliMimv cl cAcaciaaiiDe c I' intcllciti sottiltatiiinl, 
che aano avnto li Teologi in considcrarc e contcmplarc [ddio ct 


Readings oh the Purgalorio. Canto xxvie. 

He ihen entered into the (ire in front of me, t>egf;ing 
St3tiu«, who for B long way before that hi»<i be«n 
between un {Ut. divided ua], to come on behind. As 
soon as 1 was in it (Che lire), I would willingly hitvc 
cast myself into molten >;la8s to cool mc, bo im- 
nicnsurablc whs the burning there. My beloved 
Father (Virgil), to encourage me, spoke of nothing 
but Ucjttricc ns we walked along, saying: "Already 
mcthinkb J sec her eyes." 

As Beatrice represents ThcolofO'i the observation may 
remind one of the supplication in the Book of Common 
Prayer, that " in all uur suffcrinRs het^ upon earth, we 
may steadfastly look up to Heaven." Virgil, symbol 
of human science, tacitly acknowledges the insufficiency 
of L-arlhly means to comfort and sustain Man in times 
of great sorrow and suffering. 

The Poets are now so enveloped in flames, that they 
cannot see their way. but an angelic song guides their 

The Angc) had enjoined them in ver. 12, al eantar 
di la »on siatt wrdc, meaning that, when in the iire, they 
were to listen to llic chant on the far side of it. The 
voice is, as wc shall gather from vv, 58-63, that of 
another Angel, who is doubtless the Guardian of the 

innecmrc a coniJdcrado c cnntemptarW tn Catnin xxxi, :u<), 
the four Maidrnx who repreMiit the Cardiniil Virlurii sav to 

" Mcnrcnii sgli occhi TOoi." 

In Ciiiti'. ii, C. 16, il. »j. a8. Dante write*: "Gli oMhi di qiicMa 
dnnna »ana Ic Hue ilimoitraiivni, Ic quail driltv ncgli ncchi dcllo 
intcIlctlOi innBTnorAna I* anima." On the power of the eye* o( 
Ueatricc, mc I'ar. xv. J4-36:— 

"... dcntro agli occhi i^uni ardcvA un fi»o 

Tal, ch' io pensai cu' miei toccar lo fondo 
Dctik mia graiia c del mio Paradiw)." 

Canto XXVII. ReadiH^s on the Purgatorio. 


Terrestrial Paradise. Unlike ihe two with flamiriK 
swordR placed there by God lo drive away whoever 
should approach, thi<i one, the Ange] of Purity, invites 
the pure in heart to enter, addressing himself to the 

Uuidavaci * una voce chc cantava 5S 

Di 13i-, c noi, allcnii pure a lei, 

Vcniramo fuor M dove ni monlava. 
[Vnrtr.t fMiMjkli falrii mt't, 

Sond dentro ad un lumc che U ertt,[ 

T«l chc mi vinsc, c guardar nol potei. 60 

— " t.o Kol Hcn va,"— soggignsc,— "e vien la sent; 

Nun V* arrcoiatc, mn titudlatc il pas»o, 

Mcntrr chc I' nccidcntc non s* xnnera." — 


* (iuidni'aci : Cesari fp. iS^) compares (hin distant chant, Rid- 
ing ihe penitents through the flumes, to boat* on the I. ago di 
f Gardo. which, durint; the fogs thutarc prevalent ihcic, have bells 
their prows, to help them ii> avoid collisions. Scartiucini ob- 
«ervc» that, whercuH in the other CorniccH it had always been an 
Anxel who cflaccd one of the «vcn I'n from l>ufiic'!i brow, in 
this Cornice there is no auch mention, and wc ure left to infer 
that the last P, signifyini; the sin of Lust, i-i burnt out while he 
is in the fire. Thi» in commented on by Pietro di Dante: ■' Kt 
nota aucturcm in hoc vitia fuisac multuin imjilkiium, ut nunc 
oBtendit de incendin quod habuit in dicta ilamma in reminis- 
centia conacientvse." In none of the Cornices of Purgatory', and 
nol even in Hell, has Dante had to nuRcr %a much aa in thi* 
Cornice of the Lustful, In I'ur^, »iii, 133-J8. he liaj* that he 
(cars he will have njttr dtatlt lo da penance amunj; the I'roud and 
Bnvious, but ht- now finds that for a few moments he has to 
sulfer Ihe tormentt of the luulful even before hin death. 

t \'eiiiU : ticariai^nii points out that, a« the Angel Warder at 
the entrance of Purgatory tattcs the functions uf Si. Peter, to 
does the Angel at the exit from Purgatory take the functions of 
Je*u* Chrint, pronotmcmj; the ereal sentence that will be repeated 
on the Day of Judgment. 

J un lume cJk II <ra : The linht was the radiant form of the 
Angel, far exceeding in brightness those whom Danlc had prc' 
vioualv seen. .\s the focU iHucd from the flames, they wcrejUKi 
opposite the stairway leading up to the TcTrestrial Paradise, and 
the .Angel stood at the foot of (he !itairca>e. 


Rradiitgi on the Purgalcrio. Canto xxvii. 

A voice that was singing; on the far side (of the fire) 
guided us on ; and wc, givinft our attention (o il 
alone. iKSued forth where the SKCcnt 1>c{;ati. Come, 
ye h{(tf.c<i vj My Father * sounded from the interior of 
a light that was there, so (liritliani) thai it overcame 
me, and I could not \^a.m upon it. " The Sun U 
sloking fast," added (the voice), " and the night 
coineth : t tarry not, but press on your steps, before 
that the Wcsit shull become dRrlccncd by night." 

We know fram Canlu vii, 52. that, as soon as the ni^ht 
falls in Purgalor)-. al! progress is arrested. And there- 
fore the .\ngcl advises their not delaying on the very 
threshold of the Terrestrial Paradise, at> though he 
would say. " Life is short, Death is at hand," 

Benvenuto draws attention to the fact that, up jo this 
point, the road had been winding round the circuit of 
the mount; but here, as in the Anli-Purgahfrio, it di> 
verges and ascends through a hollow way straight up 
to the summit. This path Dante now describes. Ben- 
venuto thinks he wishes, by an allegory, to speak of the 
path of virtue. 

Hardly have the three Poets commenced the ascent 
of the stairu'ay, when the Sun sets, and as by the lau- 
of Purgatory further progress is not permitted at nif^ht. 
Ihc)' lie down upon the steps of the staircase and Dante 
falls into a deep sleep. 

Urttta tialia la via per cntni il unn, 

Vcreo tal parte, ch' io to^lieva i ratagi 


•See St. :U,i/(. XXV, 34: "Then shall Ihc King say unto thcttt 
on hia riKbt hand. Come, yv lilessed of My Father, inherit ibc 
kingdom prepared for you frora the (bundatiofi ni the woild." 

t Tht* remind* one of SI. John ix, 4 : " The ninht cometh, when 
no nian can work." 

Canto XXV11. Reatlingfi on f/ic Pttrgatorio. 


Dtnan^i a me * del sol ch' ere gift basao.t 
R di puchi HCftglion Icviirtimn i HogguJ 

Che il %o\ torcur, [>lt I' ornbra che ti xpcnse, 

Sentimrno retro cd Ui « li inict naKlci- 
E pria chc in tuttc Ic huc parii immi'nsc 3 

Posoc orizinnic || fatio d' un tiiipctto. 

F. no[ie avexsc iittlv lutr diHp<ni!ic. 
Ciascun dk not d' un grado (ccc Icno ; 

Chi la natur> del inontc ci aiframc 



* Oinanzi a mc: Henvenutn inlcrpreis dinaitii u nu as mvr- 
berunUs in facuiu mutm, and tvcin tal hitrtr towurds ihc West; 
but Jacupo [IcUu La.iiu, Buti, SturCaiJiini, 1-Valkclli nnd ather*, 
itrc very poiitivt that it means lowardx ilic EasI ; Antonclli 
{fip. Tommas^o^ cxprcMctt the opinion ihut ihii Uxi stairway wa« 
lighted by the ruyK 'if ihc Sun just scttin;;: and thai the Poet, as 
he ascended it, would ha\c before him the shadow of hi* own 
body. The stairwuy then was seen from the West, and led 
towards the Ensl. Bull adds to thta (liat it lo an appropriate 
and allcKorical ficlion, tu deitrtbe the anccndin;; tu Paradise as 
ascending towards Ihc Eitst, whence the Sun is first manifested 
to Ihc world, the Sun, which siKnifics the Salvation of Uod. 

t(ra jfii) baiso: Some read Utaa, " weary of his Ions course." 
lUvamma i sagp : Buti explains this: " di pochi scalani 
avemmo ospcricmiu." 

S immente ; On this Antonclli writes : " Kictiiama 1" aiiennonc 
del lettore air ampiez;!adeir onyj:onte, che a quel Iuuko eccclno 
»i convcnivB, soniminiKlrjndoeli 1' idea dell' ininienaitli. I'rinia, 
dunque, chc lutio I' inmiertBo xpaxiu, chc di U dominavasl, o 
potcvasi dominarc, foxnc fatto d' un medcsimo aapctlo. uoi 
oscuro, c pcrcifi prima chc la nottc avc6»c danpcrtuitu distoti il 
NUo vela; ciascuiui dei Itc Pncli M fece lelto di un gradina delta 
scala. adagtanilovibi." 

\\imzxonie; Tommasfo thinks that the omission of the definite 
article before oriztonte almost iinplivK the personili cation of the 
horiioR. Dr. Moore (T'lW Ktftrtueti, p. no) says that in this 
passage (11. 70--J3) "c have the coming on of durkness, and, in 
II. 69*90> the shining out of the mars clearer and larger than their 
wont. This brings us to Ihc end of the Ihird day, TiKsday, 
April lath, and the Poets have now reached the end of PurKalory 

firoper. The dawn of the fourth day is benutifully described in 
I. irK), etc. : the Earthly Paradise is entered, nnd Virgil lakes hia 
leave in the Kplendid pautage with which this Canto ends, in Ihc 
course of which (in i. 133) he poinia tu the now Tally risen Sun, 


Reading oh the Purgatnrio. Canto xxvii. 

Ln poKSfl del nullr piA chc il dildto.* 


The pa&sagc ascended straight up tlirough the rock, 
in such Uircction, thut before nic I impeded the ruya 
of the Sun, which wa^ alrtatly low. And l»ui of few 
ittepK hiid we essayed the prouf, when l>Dth I iind my 
SagcH, by reason of the disappearance of my ahadowi 
perceived that the Sun had xet behind us. And ere 
the horizon in nil its boundless expanse had assumed 
one unvaried hue (of gloom), and ere night had dif- 
fused it:i dnrkness equally nil over it {Hi. had made 
all its difliributions). each of us made a bed of « stair : 
forasmucli as the nature of the mountain had taken 
away from us the power of ascending even more than 
the dtsirc (to do »o). 

Bcnvenuto says that Dante probably means that he 
gave himself up to nocturnal meditation with Statius, 
a poet of moral science, and with Virgil, a |.>«>el of 
nntura! science. 

Quati fti fanno ruminando manse t 
Lc eaprc, state rapidc e protcnt 
Sapra le cime, avanti che sien pranae. 

* U dUtlto : Giuliani is quoted by Scartaxzini aa sayinc. that 
Virgil had tn enter the lire of punficAtiAn ti> reiuler himself 
worthy of pausing the ihrchoUl of ihc Terrestrial Parjidi»>c ; and 
Statius because he would naturally i!" so before aacendinj; to 
Cioil. Danle had to go throuRh thai trial and torment aK though 
to mortify the spirit of the Hesh as a holocnuKt to iioA. Scartn/- 
zini thinkti that Virgil and SlRliu» had In pa»s through llic 
Aameft for the simple rcawon that there was no other way to 
aaccnd. They lay themselves down on a »lcp lo obey the law of 
the holy mountain, which cannot be aaccndcd by night. They do 
nol sleep, not being nubject to the impcrfectionH of the flesh, but, 
like the shcphci'ds, watch all nighl, while Dante alone. Irom huving 
the flesh nf Adam {q«cl 4' AJamo) wus ovcrtome by sleep. 

t rumin-i'ufi' Miint^ l.e a»ptt : Uoccaccii^ in his yUn Ji Dtmit, 

rclatcK that Hanie wrcilc two very bc«uli(ul Ktlogues. in anawer 

to some verges sent to him by his friend Macslro Giovanni del 

Virgilio, B diminjcuishcd poet nf Raloj-nn who himself wrol« an 

>iiaph on Dante after hi^ death. In the second of iheac 

icioguci of Dante (11. 7*15) there in a pasaagc reacniblinK this 

ic of the goati. 

Canto xxvil. Rtadinf^ oh the Pur/foiorio. 


Tacitc air nmbra. mcnlre chc il sol fcrvc, 

Guardatc Aa[ pastnr chc in iiulU verga So 

Poggiato s' i, c lor poggiaio acrve : * 

B quale il mandrian t che fuon albcrft*, 
LunEO il frculio ! suo quclo pcrnoiu. 
Guiiidando porchi fiera non In sperga; 

Tali criivamn tutti c tic ill lot (a. 85 

lo come capia. ed ci come paalori. 
Pasciati (guinci c quindi d' alia grotla. jS 

Even as the goats become quiet while ruminating, 
which had been a.^le and impetuous upon the moun- 
tain tops before they took ihcir meal, rcBtinj; hushed 
in the shade, an long as the sun is hot, watched by 
their shepherd who leans upon bis staff, and thus 
leaning watches them; and as ihc herdsman that 
lives in the open, watches by night beside his resting 
flock, keeping f^uard that no wild beaitt scatter it; 
even bo at that hour were wc all three, 1 like a goat, 
and they like shepherda. hedged in on either side by 
loftj' rock. 

Benvcnuta explains that while ascending the winding 
road, like those striving after virtue, they might have 

• lor foggiato urve: Others read "e lor it pout ttmt," "and 
resting while they TCJ.t causes thern to re*l al»o," but the former 
rcftdini; has an overwhelming weixhl ni MS. authority. Ben- 
vcnuto luys: Like as the Goals aitccniJ the hiKh hill lDp», and 
f:atl)cr Ihc moH succulent branchca, shrubs and leaves, and 
when natiatcd, are led by the shepherd to ruminate in the shade, 
so Danie'i Bpirit soar* to more lofty themes, to feed on more 
elevated ihoughts, which he can think out and diicuM with hts 
gulden, at a lime well fitted for the conlemplation of the new 
and sublime matter of which he will now have to treat. 

t WdWridno i> a herdsman rather thar a shepherd ipaUon), 
and has charge rather of large cattle than of aheep. 

\ fvfHlio t\ nAJd to be a mixed flock of iihecp and goata. 
Compare Virgil (Georg. iv, 433'436) :- 

" Ipse vclut stabuli custom in inontibua otiin, 
Vesper ubi c pa^lu vitula:t ad tccta reducit. 
Audttiaquc lupos acuunt balatibus agni. 
Considit ocopuln mcdiut. numcnunque rccenad.'* 
j d' alia gratia : Some read dalta gtvtia. 


4t8 Readings on the Purgaton'o. Canto xxvit. 

slipped over the edge of the Cornice, but, having once 
arrived at an abode of bliss, there is no more falling 

Divhion III. — Dante now relates how he fell into 
a deep sleep and had a dream, which Benvcnuto calU 
Mobiit sotnnium. He indicates the hour at which he 
fell asleep. 

Poco putrn parer li del di fiinri ; 

Ma per quel [loco vcUcv' io Ic titclk. 

Di lor soltre e pii^ chiare « m«ggiofi.* qo 

S) rumtnando, c «1 mirandn in quelle, 

Mi prene il »anno ; il sonno che sovcbIc, 

An/i che il f»tto sia »« le novclle-t 

(Of the sky) outside but little could be seen; but in 
that little i beheld the stars more brilliant snd larger 
than their wont. Thus musing, ami thus g»z>Dg 

* It ittUt . . . fii chiau t maggiori : Antonclli Mva that the 
increased brilliancy of the stars would be due to tnc intensely 
pure and rarefied air of that elevated region ; iind, » recanU 
iheir appearing larger, it is probable that Dante wished lo con- 
vey to hit readcn ihat he hnd reached such an altitude, aa to 
be appreciably nearer to the starry sphere, so that the stars 
would actually aeem l>r;i:cr. Kenvenuto conficma thti cnncep* 
tlon: "Stcllie videbunlur clariorcs sibi et majorvfi solilo, auia 
crnt vicinior c<i:l(i ct in loco puro a nubibu* : diitantia enim loci 
facil atellat vidcri ininima*, (Juk Hunt in se tnaximse." 

t ilKtino ckt tovcnU, Ami cht il faflo iia sa k itovdU ; Drcsnu 
prophetic of ihinEs really about to happen were >upppscd lo be 
tha«e drexint in the morning before waiting. Compare tnj, xxvi. 

" Ma He prctiHo al mattin del ver ai aogna." 
And Purg. ix, 13 :— 

'* Nell ora che coinincia i Insti lai 
I.a rondjnella preiiHo allu mattina, 
Forse a mcnioria dc' •lUui primi guai, 
B che la mente novirs pcrcKrina 

PiCi dalla came, c men d« pcosicr pren, 
Allc sue vision quasi t divina ; 
In sogno mi parca." etc. 

Canto XXVII. Headings on Iht Purgatorio. 419 

upon them (the stars), <t)eep came upon me. the 8le«p 
that oftentimes has inCelli^'cncc of a thing before the 
fact has occurred. 

The three Poets were reposing on the steps in a deep 
hollow way or cutting, and consequently could see btit 
litllc: on uithcr side of them, as one in a well can only 
sec a small portion of the sky. 

The ideas which passed through Uantc's mind before 
he fell a<ileep, developed into a prophetic dream, which 
he now relates, and which wc may infer look place a 
couple of hours before the dawn. 

Nell' ora, Lredo, chc del]' orienic 

Prima laggii net montc Cite res,* 
Chc di foco d' amor par scmprc ardentc, 
Giovanc t c bella in xogno mi parcB 
Donna vcderc andur per una landx 
Cogtierxlo fiori, c vaniando ditca : 
— " SappisL, qualunque il min nomc domanda, 

Ch' to mi son I.ia, c vo tnovcndo Jntonin 
Lc belle niani a brmi una gh iris n da. 



Cythcnca aftor the i&land of 
/hith is Ccrifjo, where, accord- 

*Cit»ta: Vcnua was called 
Cythcra, the modem name o( w^ 
ins tn the heathen myiholo^, the goddcKi wan born nut of the 
foam of the itcu. Fiom Ihu circumntancc the islind wati held 
panicularlv sacred to Venus, and here she hat) a celebrated 
temple. 'I'he planet Venu« has a peculiarly luiitrout uplendour, 
which wai9 popularU' ttupposcd lo be the ihrobbinK of the fire of 
love. Compurc Pxr^'. i, 19; — 

'* Lo bcl pianeta che ad amar conforta, 
b'aceva tutlo rider !' ojiente." 

^GiM<an*: Leah did not die young, but St. Thomas Aquinas. 
{Summ. Thiol pars iii. soppl. qu. \xxxi, art. t) dlalCK that " Xatura 
human* pccfcctisslmum slatum habel in tctalc juventli. Bt^o 
in ilia xtalc resurgent omnca." And she therefore is !>ccn br 
l>antc, ai it were in the prime of life, in the form in which xhe 
would be supposed to rise Bgain. Benvenulo ha* avcry tone note 
upon Leah. >nd ibvh that thin noble Rction ii ununlly expUincd 
all wrong, anit that l>amc here wiahcs to speak of lh« Countcs« 
Matclda of Canovsa. in the Stale ol Keggio. 

DD 2 



Keadittgi on tfu Purgalorio. Canto xxvii. 

Ter ptaccrmi alio apvcchio qui m' sdomo ; 

Ma miii suoia Rachel mai noti oi Hmaga 

Dal nuo mirnglio,* c sicdc tulto Kiomo. idj 

Rll' i dc' Kuoi bccli ncchi vcdcr %'ai;a< 

Com' io dcir adomarmi con Ic niani ; 

Lei to vcderc. c mc I' opmre appaga." — 

About the hour, I think, when Venus, who ever scemii 
to burn with Hie iirc of love, fust bcumcd upon the 
mountnin (of Purgatory) from the Ka»l, mcthouf^hl I 
»aw in a dream a joung and bcauteouA Lady walking 
over a plain, culling Howcra, and in her sonc she was 
saying ; " Let whoever may demand my name know 
that 1 am Leah, and I go moving about my fair 
hands, to make for myself a garland. To please me 
at the mirror (i.f. God) I here adorn myseif, but my 
sister Rachel never depart;; from her looking-glass, 
and Hits at tt all day. She is as eager to gare at her 
lovely cyCH. aa 1 to adorn myself with my hands; 
contemplation is her delight, and work is mine." 

5carta22ini says that, to understand better the diffi- 
culties in the lines From 94 to I08, it will be well to 
consult passages from St. Thomas Aquittas. 

In Smtm. Thcol. pars ii. 2'', qu. clxxix. art. i : "Quia 
qutdam homines prccipuc intcndunt contemptatiuije 
veritatis, quidam vcr^ intcndunt principalitcr exteriori- 
bus actiontbus, indc est qudd vita hominis convenienter 
dividilur per activam et contemplativam." Again, /frid. 
art. 2 : " [stx diue vitae signtficantur per duas uxorcs 

*mirai;lio: Several impoilanl tcxtn, includinj; tlic Vatican 
and the Berlin MSS., read aaimintflio. whkh is never tned in 
Ihe nente of "mirror" in the Italian language. On Ihe other 
hand Via (iuiltonc {l.tlt. tj) docs uu mtrafiiio in that iienM: 
"CarisKinii, dct mondo miragli *ictc voi lutli net mondo mafcnt, 
a cui s' alUitan tutti i minnri voMri." Mtraclh is Ihc reading 
of the Santa Crocc, Cactflni. Casunetc, and Vienna MSS. Alu 
ol the t-'irst Four EdilioHS, Wittc, Bcnvenuto, Ceaari, Toramaaio, 
Scarta»int, and others. 


Canto XXVII. Readings oh the Purgatorto. 



Jacob: activa quidcm per l.iam. contemplativa vcropcr 
Kachclcm ; ct per duas mulicrcs qua Uoininum hospitio 
rcccpcrunt : contemplativa quidcm per Mariam, activa 
ver6 per Martliam . , . Divisio ista datur dc vita 
humana ; qua; quidem attenditur secundilm intellectum. 
Intellcctus autcm dividitur per activum ct contem> 
plativum, quia finis intcllccliva cognitionis vcl est ipsa 
cognitio verilatis, quod peitinet ad intellectum conteiti- 
plativum : vel csl aliqua exterior actio, quod pcrtinvt ad 
intcllcctum practicum sivc activum." Again, Ibid. qu. 
clxxxii, art. 2: " Deuin dilinere secundiim se est magis 
merilorium qu^in diligere pruximum . . . S'itu autcm 
contemplativa directe et immediate pertinet ad dilec* 
tioncm Dei; vita autcm activa dircctius ordinatur ad 
dilectioncm proximi. Et tdc6 ex suo gcncrc contem- 
plativa vita est majoris mcriti quam activa." In Com: 
ii, cap. 5. II. 8o-Ji5, Dante, in accordance with the teach- 
ing of St. Thomas Aquinas, contends that the contem- 
plative life is the one which must resembles God, and 
is more loved by Him. The Terrestrial Paradise, into 
which Dante is just cntennt;, is a figure of the happiness 
of this conteniplalivc life; the Celestial Paradise sym- 
bolij^es the blcsiscdncsb of Life Utcmal. At the entrance 
of the Terrestrial Paradise, Dante in a dream sees Leah, 
who represents the perfection of the active life that 
muHt follow after expiation of «ins, and is but a step 
to the contemplative life, a link between rur^aton.- 
and Heaven, between politics and religion, between 
Virgil and Beatrice. I-eah speaks to Dante of her sister 
Rachel, whw forecasts to him the si^ht of Beatrice, the 
two latter both symbolizing the contemplative life. 

Datiic's dream therefore is intended to show him 
the double life of Man when purilied, and at the same 

Readings ou the Pur^atorin. Canto xxvil 

time shows him by anticipBtton whul he will sec when 
in I'ar&dj'>e. His vision is a foreshadowing of Matelda 
and Ifcatricc in the Terrestrial Paradise. In the Old 
Testament Leah is the symbol of the Active Life, and 
Ra.chel of the Contemplative: aa Martha and Mary are 
in the New Testament, and Matelda and Beatrice 
the Divnne Comedy. 

Ruakin {Mod. Painters, iii, p. 222) says: "This 
Icrprctatiun appears at Hrst straightforward and 
tain : but it has missed count of exactly the m 
important Tact in the two passages which we liave 
10 explain. Observe: Leah gathers the flowers to 
decorate hcnclf, and delights in Her Ou-n Labour 
Kachel stts silent, contemplating herself, and dcligh 
in Her Own Image. These are the types of ihc Cn 
glorihed Active and Contemplative powers of Man. 
Hut Beatrice and Matelda are the same powers, Glori- 
fied. And how arc they Glorified ? I^cah took delight 
in her own Labour; but Matelda, in operibuK tnanuum 
Tuarum — ik (iad's Labour : Rachel, in the sight of 
her own face ; Beatrice in the sight of God't face." 
{Thew tlalica are RnlJn's own.] 

Division IV. — In this concluding portion of the 
Canto, we learn how Dante awak'es from his dream, 
how Virgil in noble Uinguage takes leave of him, 
giving him much comfort and wholesome advice. 

The dawn of the fourth day in Purgatory, We 
ncsday, April ijth. 1,^00, is beautifully described. 
E gill, per gli aplcndori «ntclucani, 

Che Unto >i peregrin iiureon pit) KrnlJ 
Quamo tornando albcr{;an men lotiUni,* 


*mM Itmlani or ^'it lonlani: Of iheM two much (l»|iuti 
readings the one moat commonly adopted ia ufn limlfini, whk 

Canto XXVII. Rtaiinf^s on the Pvrgatorio. 423 

Lc tcnebrc Tuggian * d* lulli i lati. 

E il sonna mio con csst ; ond' lo lev»' mi, 

Vcggcndo i Ki'an niacMn gii Icvati. 

And now throujih the brighlnesB that precedes ihe 
dawn, which to wayfarers arises all the swcclcr on 
their homeward way, the less distant from home they 
pttsH the night, ihc ditrkness was ttying "way on 
every side, and my clumber with il; whereupon I 
arose, seeinj; the ^rent Masters already risen. 

Dnnte now relates how Vir^jil kindles Ills desire to get 
fonvard by showinR him that he is very soon to reap 
the reward he has been seeking through so many toils. 
In effect Virgil says : " Bicsscd arc they that do hunger 
and thirst after righteousness." Dante's eyes arc that 
ver>' day to look upon Beatrice herself in company 
with the whole Church Militant : and on the mcrrow 
Danle will ascend into Paradise. These words of Virgil 
make a profound impression upon Dante. 

ID ttitti fuund in the eatly editions of Jc^t and Mnniiin, and in 
alKn rntlnwcd by Bcnvcntito, ttuti, anil nil Kucce<:diiig Commen- 
tators. Even St:ana£zini, who accepts the reading ^in on ms- 
ununi of itx M.S. atiihiinty, utys he prefers intH, besides which 
he s&ys the idea of mtn tonlaili in to be fotind elsewhere in 
Dante 'a own H'orki. In Com; iii, c. to. It. i7'i9, Uuntc wrilco: 
"Quanto la cokr de)>iclcrata pi^ s* appropinqun a\ desiderantc, 
tantii il dc&idcrin t niaf;gi«rc." And De Mvii. lib. i, c. 11, 11. 113, 
114: "Omnedilieibile tamo maips diliititur, quanto pnipinquiun 
ert ditigenti." Dante is comparing himself to a returning; way- 
farer who bcholdit the dawn with incrcaMn^ delight, as day by 
day he eels nearer and nearer \o hi« longed-for home. The 
nenne ai ihc rcad:ni: piu liintaiii in that, the farther off on« ia 
from the desired object the more easily itoes nnt Kittl oneself to 
the daily taik of diminitihint: the distance. 

• Lt Umbti /wtfjc'i'i .' Compare I'ttrg. ii, 55-57 : — 

'' Da lullc purti sacitava il giomo 

Lo sol, ch" avea colle saettc contc 

Di m^tta il ciel cacciato Capricorno." 


Readings oil the Purgatorio, Canto XXvii. 

-"Quel dolce pome,* chc pw Unti rami 
Cercando vk ta cura dci mortali, 
Oggi pntrb in pace Ic (ue famt.** — 

Viigilio inverso mc qucMc cotili 

Carole U8i>. e mai non furci Etrennet 
Chc foiucr di piacerc n qucxte ef;uali. 

Tanto vuler sopra voter mi venne 

D«ir »•« su, ch' aJ ugiii fia*»i> poi 



*iloUe pomt : Compare JnJ, xvi, 61, 63 :— 
" Lkscio I0 fcic, e vo per doloi pomi 

Piomcjuii B mc per lo vcrttcc Due*." 
And DttiU XKKiii, t.): "And for thr preciouH Truils bi'ought 
forth by the *un, and for the precious things put forth by the 
moon. And Rev. xviii, 14: ''And the fruits that thy miuI 
lublcd Mftcr arc departed from thee." Scanairiini thinks thai 
Dante drew nol imly his opininn», but alno much oi the vrnrds 
o( the piesent pa§)>aKc from one in Boethius {Pkiloi. Ccnupf. 
iii, pr. ii) : " (Imnis mortahum cura, quam mullipticium atu- 
diorum labor cxeicct, divcixi (|uii]cm callr proccdil. Hcd ad 
UDum lumen beati[udini« tknem nitilur pervcnirc. td aulem cat 
bnnum, quo quis adcplo nihil ultcrius dcaidcrarc qucnt. Quod 
quidem eitt umnium aummum bonorum, cuncluciue imra w 
bona coniinenn: cui si quid nbforcl, Kummum »se non posict ; 
quoniom rclinqurrclur cxtrin^ecut quod poasei opiar!. Liquet 
igitur, bcatltudincm cn.ic ataiuin bonoruro omnium conf;rega- 
tionc pcrfectum. Hunc, uli dixtmu^, dLvcrso tiamite monaica 
omnrs conantur adipiKci. Hut enim mcntibus hominum ven boni 
naturaliter inxcria cup<diia)i: sed ad lal*a devjus error abducil. 

Siuoram quidcm alii nummum esse bunum nihilo indii;cre crc- 
rnlers ul divitith affluant, elabnrnnl : hIiI vcro bnnuni, quod sit 
dicntuimum vc tic rat inn c, judiL'unics, adcplifl honoribuH, rcvcrendi 
civibus suiscfse nituntur. Sunt qui tummum bonum in aumma 
poientin c&<tc conviituant : hive) regnare tpsi volunt, vet regnae- 
tibus adhicrcie cnnantur. I'lurimi vero boni fructom Kaudio 
Iwlitiaquc meliuntur: hi fclicisaimum putant vutupiaie diAluere. 
.... Scd surnmum bonum hcatitudincm cue dcKnimun. t^uarti 
beatum eucjudii:at statum qucm prx cc1cmquiM)ue dcsKkrai." 

iitrtnnt: Sitfttaa iv derived ftom the Latin sinua, a gratuity. 
The Prcnch word in r/frJtfi('S('piiir.)and bi)th iDcan a present Kivcn 
on a special day such an a Chriftmat. a New Veal's, or an Euter 
present. The Poililtalurt Caaiimc explains the posiuce : "Slrinn* 

3ui primuni donum quod dnlur in Kalcndaiuin dicuntur, ut in 
ccrctis habetur." And Fieiro di Dante : " diciCur sircnna mancia, 
quiB datur in principio Kalcndarum." 

Camo xxvii. Reiidingi on Ihc Purgalorio. 423 

Al vola mi >cniia crcsccr Ic pcnnc* 

"That sweet frutl {i.e. The Supreme Good), which 
the xnxioufl cure of mortals goes in quest of upon so 
many branches, will this day appease thy hungeriogs." 
Such words did Virgil use to me, and never were 
there guerdons that were lor pleasure equal to these 
Within nic longing so grew upon longing to be abovCt 
that at every step ihereafter I felt my wings growing 
stronger for flight. 

We now reach the lime when Virgil, knowing that 
Dante is about to enter into the presence of Reatricc, 
Divine Science, and that the companionship of him- 
self, Human Science, Mill no longer be necessary, 
addie^hcK his last tarewcit tu Dante, in noble and 
touching words. Wc may infer that these are spoken 
on the very threshold of the Terrestrial Paradise, and 
although we see Virgil cotilinue to be Uante's silent 
companion over the Debatable Land, ycl as soon as 
Beatrice appears he vanishes for ever.f 

Implying that purer eyes than his arc required to 
guide Dante through the Terrestrial Paradise, Virgil 

^crrwtr It pennt : From the Jnteniiity of his joy, Oitntc fell so 
light that he could ftlmo»t fly. Sec far. x\; yi-ya: — 
"... cd arriitcmi [ar »rrosctn)] un cenno 
Chv (ece ercKcer I' iili al voler mia" 
And line* 79-81:— 

" Ma voKlia ed arnomento net mortalj. 

Per Ih cagion ch' a vnj i manifctita. 
DivcrsBtiienlc «on pcnnuii in nli." 
^Bcnvenut<j thinks thut Virgil vanished after conctading his 
addrc!>!s but thai ih munifeitly an error, for Virgil is twice spoken 
of ufterwRidR. See Ptirg. xxviii. i4j-+7 :— 
" lo mi volsi diretro alloiu tutlo 

A' mici Pocli, c vidi chc con riao 
ViJilo av«van I' ultimo coatrutto." 
And again Pur/^, xxix, 55-57 :— 

** lo mi rivolai d' ammirazion pieno 

Al buon VirKilin, ed esiio mi tixpose 
Con viata cart:a di stupor non nicno." 


Readings on tlu Purgatorio, Canto xx\'iL 

sadly points out the way to his beloved pupil, telling 
htm he musl henceforth consider himself emancipated 
from human teachers and governors, and. until he 
passc!^ under the tutelage of Beatrice, he must walk on 
under the sole guidance of his own free will. 

Come la iicaU lutta aotto noi 

l-'u coraift, e fummo m *u 'I Krado mpcroo, 
[n m« liccii Virgilio gli occhi suoi, 

F, disBc:— "I! temporal focn e I' cicmo 
Vcdutu hai, li);li[>- c stt venuto in parte 
Dov' io per inc piii oltrc non disccma,* 

Traltn l' ho qui con injccftno e con «rlc ;t 
Im luft piaccrc { iiinai prcndi |icr ducc : 



*jio« diit:fmo : Compare Purg. xviii. 48 : — 
" Ed cgli a nti- : ' Quanto rairinn qui vcdc 

Dirii pon*' to; da mil: in 1& t' atipelta 
Pure 11 liealrice ; eh' opera c <ti fc<le.* " 

t eon ingegno t ton arti : Mai~tini l/,ii liiv. Cimi. Jithiarala utonJti 
I primifii d<Ua fihiojia, Toriov, 1S40) cxplainii this well: '■ L'tn- 
Kcgnoi natumtc: ma m pu6 pcrfc/iunsrc colU culiura. Pcrci^ 
nunl dividcrm in native eri at^uinto, Nnn h mai intcramcntc 
acquiMitu ; ma con tal ni>n\c h' intcndc il nativo pcrlciiunato con 
r cKcrcixio. Virgilio per itigegiia ititcnde Jl nativo, c per arU 
r acquiailo." Scailax/ini. who quotes the above, undcrsiandti Ihc 
wortU Io meun : " 1 have brouithl ihec; limn (ur, making uac of the 
gifts that have been vouchsafed mc by Nature. a« well as of the 
arts which I have studied." 

[ /.t> ttirt fiattrt : Comparing this passage with Ertltu. xv, 14 
{Vuif-^ " UcuH ab initio cunsiituit liomincm. ct rcliquit ilium in 
manu consllii sui." Scartaixini explainii that piaitrr nnmctimcs 
siKnilies arhtlriii, and at others pfoptiu comilio. When Virgil 
tells Dante thai, IVom that time fonh, he is to take hio plcMxurc 
(fiaittt) tot his ^U'dc. he ccrlfiinly iloeii not in the leafat mean 
that Oante it to act without prudence, but that he contidcn 
Dante capable of cuidinn himself. Therefore piattrt is to be taken 
here rather with the siKntficatiun ul ci'nitjciio than of arlitino, and 
Kcarlaxxini interprcta (he words, *' i.ct your own good sens* 
juide you." But fiactrf munt nai be taken in ibe neaae of vi4ert, 
!oi the will i& not here looked upon as a leader, but as a follo^tcr 
aflci vjKctom. The CommcntHlDnt ino»tly have it that Dante 
wan now complvtcly puriticd. and therefore could follow W\f. own 


Canto XXVII. ficadinf^ on the Purgatorio. ifi-j 

Fuor sci ilclC crlc vie, fuor nei ilcH' arte. 
Vcdi lik il sol die in ironic ti riluce ;* 

Vedi r eriwiis. i floh e gli •rbuscelli, 

i;iic qui la terra sol da sc produce! 135 

Mentrc'chc vecnan lieti gti ncchi belli, J 

Che tuKrimaiido u t« vtnir mi fcnno, 

Seder ti puoi c puoi xnAxt tra eili. 
Non aiKpettmr inia dir pid, ni inio cenno. 

free-will without fear (A trantfCreuiini;. But it ift only at the laal 
line of thE Ptirgaliirio ihat we learn that he fell hinixclf 

" I'urn e cli»p»fito a sulirv allc atcllc." 
Itcfnrc he bccomcH ko, although cleansed from the ncvcn capitAl 
Kinx, he will hNve to uiidcrco k heavy act of contrition on the 
*;ipcarance of Beatrice. I-le hss still then got to diKencumher 
htmaelf of a nin, not a capital ofTuncc, but still a sin. What ■> 
this sin ? asks Scnrtax/ini ; and he replies: It is, ai we shall ace, 
the bin ofduubis and vacillations concerning the Faith. 

* il lol . . . in ftonit ti riliict : " Se i Pocti avcvano il Sol* allc 
Kitalle quamlci la sera prcccdcnlc cominciarono b saliie la !ical«, 
giunti in eims ad essa poco dopo i) »orgcre Oi quell' astro, dovcva 
queato esHcr luro in prnnpcltn, scbbcnc un pocn a mnistra" 
<Antonclli, in Tnmmasfo'i Cemmeiitary). Dante's brow i(> now 
ncalird from the seven wounds traced on it by the Anfiel's sword, 
and is therefore fitletl rnorc worlhilj- to receive ihe liRht ol (in<l, 
which Virgil itiipliea will nciwahine upon Uante and be his f^vHt, 
t la Urra sol da i^ privtMt : Compare Purg. vx\-iii. bj-ttq :— 
"Ella ridca dalK altra rivn drlttn, 

Tracndo piit color con Ic sue mani, 

Che 1" alta terra sen^a seme jtitta." 

And Ovid, Milam. i. toi. loa :— 

" Ipsa (]uoquc immunis, rastroqiic intccia, ncc ultis 
Saucia vomeribus. per ite dubal omnia teliut." 
And 107, 108: — 

"Ver erat wternutn. placidique tepentibus auria 
Mulcehani Zephyr! natos sine scmine Bores." 
tA'fJ acchi htiti : Compare 1. 54 of the present Canto, where 
Virgil encouragea Danle when pauing through the llames by 
(ay inn; ; — 

"Gli occhi stioi gift vedcr parmi." 
And la/, ii. ns-it?:— 

" l'oii:iB che m' cbbe ragionato queato, 
Gli Dcchi luccnti tagrimando volae; 
Fcrche nii fece del vcnir piQ presto." 



RcaiiHgi mi the t'urgatorio. Canto XXVII. 

Libero,* drittat c (Jino 6 luo Brbitrio, 140 

E (alio (dra non far« ■ «u(i »nnu: 
I'cTch' io le sa|ir« Te coronii c rnitrio." — J 

When the Klainvay was all run over beneath un, and 
we were on ihc topmost step, Virgil fastened his 
eyes u|ion mc, .ind said : " My Son, ihou hasl »ccn 
the tempor;i1 fire {of Purjjatoiy), and the eternal (fire 
of Hell), und art cotne to a place where of my>clf I 
can sec no funhcr. I have led thcc thus fni with 
discernment and with skill ; henceforth take for thy 
gtiidc thine own >;ood sense : thou art (now) beyond 
the steep paths, beyond the narrow ones. Behold 
there the Sun which ik j^hining nn thy brow ; l>ehold 
the soft ){raftS the ilnwern, und the shrubn, which in 
this region (the Terrestrial Paradise) the s<mI spon- 
taneously biinf;^ forth. Until in joy come to thee 
those beauteous eyes (of Beatrice), which when they 

*Libm: Dtfite writes in the Di Momarchia. lib. i.e. u. II. 5^6: 
'* Primum principiLim nostra libcnalis c^t libcrlait arbitrii, <tuam 
multi habcnt in ore, in iiiicllcciu veco psui:i. Vcniunt namqa* 
usque ad hoc, ut ditani lihcrutn aibitrium cmc, libcrum de 

voluntate judicium. Et verum dicunt Si judicium 

movcat omninn appctitum. ct nullo modn pricvcnialur ab co, 
libcrum cHt ; hi vcrt> ab appctitu, c{uocuini)uL- inodu pnevcntenie, 
judicium muveatur, Libcrum ease non polciil." 

idrillo: Danic would be in perfect upriKhtnciiH by keeping 
himself in conruiiiiLty with "(iinsiitia, la tiuAJr nrdina noi ad 
amnre cd opcrarc diritlurji in tulle le co&c" {Ctmi: ii-.cap. 17. IL 

^corono t mitrio: Scartauini esplaina this: "I ptitcc on thy 
head Ihc milrcd crnvrti nf the BmperoiH." In c^rly times it was 
Uikual to place im tht head of lh<' limperor. first the milrr. and 
upon the miire the Imperial crovn. The ecclesmslical mitre ts 
quite out of the igucslion hctc, for two reasons. In the firvt 

Kacc Vi(gil wnuld have no power Io confci it; and lecondly, 
ante wii» nut tn become from this moment bishop and paslur 
(o bimscK. but was to be under the direction of tiix spiritual 
nijdc, E)«atrice. Scarlazjrini Buin>- iip Virgil's UM words thus; 
" I pronounce thee to be Emperor >>f thyself, Uiut is, direetur of 
thine own reason in the practice of iiior»l and intellectual vir- 
tues; thou ncedcst no lander a rider to bestride thee to direct 
thy will, to hold thee in check with bit and bridle, and Io turn 
thy Kteps into the direct road." 

Canto XXVII. Headings on the Purgahrrio. 


wept made mc come to thy succour, thou mayest «it 
down (on the Kr^t^ii). and niaycst walk among them 
(the flowerR and *hrubs), Kxpect no further speech 
or 31^1 ffoni me. Thy will is released, upright, and 
sound, and Ihou wouldiil err f^really not to act upon 
its judgment ; wherefore I crown and mitre thcc (as 
sovereign) over thyacU." 

Dean Mliimptre says: "The moat natural interpreta- 
tion is, (hat Dante now takes his place among those 
who arc kings and priciits unto God (l Pet. ii, 9; 
Itev. i, 6 ; Rev. v, 10), Diflicultics have been rai&ed 
on the p;i*ound that the mitre sva^ us«d in the Roman 
ritual for the coronation of an emperor. Otho is 
described as both coronatus ct mitratm, and hence 
Scartazjrini urges that both words refer to civil and 
not to ecclesiastical functions. On the other hand 
this may be traversed by the fact that the word cortma 
was used as an eciuivalent tn mitra, so that both the 
words iitight refer to the Episcopate." 

Benvenuto does not seem to attach any ecclesiastical 
sense to the words, but translates: " Facio te super te 
rcgcm ct dominum." 



Rtadin^i Q}\ thi Purgatorio. Canio xxviii. 




In the last Canto Dante described how he and his 
companions had at length reached the summit of the 
Mountain of Purgatory, where they find the Terres- 
trial Paradise, of which the present Canto is a de- 

Henvcnutci divides it into four pinncipal parts. 

In titc finl Division, from vcr. i to ver. 33, Dante 
describes the freshness and luxuriance of the herb- 
age and trees ; the wind, the water, and the birds. 

In the- Second Divi$ion, from vcr. 34 to vcr. 84, he 
speaks of meeting a beautiful lady. 

/» the Tkivd Division, from ver. 85 to ver. 120, Dante 
puts a question to the beautiful lady as to the reason 
of water and wind existing in a region placed higher 
than the Gate of Purgatory, and she answers him re- 
specting the wind. 

hi the Fourth ZJjmroii. from vcr. 121 to ver. 148, the 
beautiful lady completes her answer to Dante's question, 
by cxplaininf; to him whence comes the water which 
irrigates this holy spot. 

Benvcnuto adds that the whole of this Canto is 
figurative and allegorical. Were we not to look at It 

Canto xxviit. Readings on the Purgatuno, 


under this aspect, it would fhc says) lack any real 
meaning or import. 

Divisim I.. — Dante wishes to describe the happy 
condition of Man, so Tar as is compatible with the 
misfortunes of human life, in a stale nf perfect vir- 
tue. He accord! nj;ly lipurcs him to bt in an ex- 
tremely elevated spot, secure from all changes, where 
no evil can befall him. and living in the midst of bliss.* 

Fraticelli says that, in order to understand the 
description that follows, the reader should recall tu 
his mind a few leading particulan. about the Moun- 
tain of Purgatory. Dante has pictured it at a yreat 
altitude above the Earth. The lower part alone, 
which the Commentators have styled the Auli-Pur- 
galorio, rose so high above it, that it was supposed to 
reach up to the highest level of the atmosphere, and 
it is at this point that Dante places the Gate of Pur- 
gator)", which he supposes to be placed on the very 
lowest edge of the Sphere of Fire. The Antt-Pur- 
gatorio was subject to rain, heat and cold, earth- 
qaakcs and other convulsions of nature; not so the 

*St. Thomas Aquinas tc&chcs thut the Terrestrial Pannliiic 
in HitUHted in the Euitcrn and more noble parts of the catch. 
'*Cutn Rutcm Oticnti sit dcxtcnt ca:li . . . dcxtcra aulcm est 
nobilior quam amiMra: conveniens fuit ut in oricmali parte 
paradiiLU)' tcrrrnus initituerclur a Ueo . . . Quidam autem 
dictiDt, quod paradi&us pertingebat usque ad lunarem globum, 
. . . locuK illc tecluKUx e*t a nostra habilattone aliquibus tm- 
pedimcntis vcl montium, vcl marium, vel alicujut. xstu<^si« re* 
gionin, quae pcrtranain non potest " {.Summ. Thatl. pani i, qu. 
Cii, art. t). St. Isidore, £tvni. lib. xiv. c. 3, writes: "Paradiitii. 
est locuB in Orientis. parlibus con.ilitutus i:ujua vocibulum ex 
GtKco in I.jitl(iiiin vcnitur /lorfMt .' pnrro Hebraicc Hden diciiur, 
(juod in noatra liiit;ua delicin: jntcTprctatur. Quod utrumque 
junctum fKcit hortum iUliciarmm; km vnim nmni gcncrc tigni ct 
pomiferaruin arboium contitua, habcna etiam Ijgaiini vitx ; non 
ibi frigus. non xstos, sed perpetua a^ru teniperi«s." 



Readingi on tlu Purgatorio. Canto xxviu. 

Ptirfiatorio proper. Landino calls the Terrestrial Para- 
disc the Po:it-rurf;eitoriu. It was situated, according lo 
Dante, above the uppermost Cornice or Circle of Pur- 
gatory- proper; and no spirit could enter therein until 
puriged of all its sins. 

Dante paints the Paradise of Delights in the most 
glowing colours." 

Wt must remember that it is now the early morning 
of Wednesday in F.aster week: the seventh and la^it 
day of Dante's journey. \Vc know, from L 133 of the 
last Canto, that the Sun has risen, and is shining full in 
Dante's face. 

Vacn i;i& di cercar dcntro e dinlornn 
L» divina forrst« upesaa e \-iv«. 
Ch' agit occhi tcrapvnva il nuovo giomo,'!' 
Scn/x pill aspcttar Uscini la rivB,{ 

Prtnclcndo la campagnalJ lento lenloU g 

* Among the bcitl known descriptions of idcil UndMrapes may 
be mentioned the followin}; : Itomcr. Odytsey, v, AcKtipiion of 
the viui of Mercury lo the Itiland of CRlypf^o. Sophocles, CEJifMt 
Cvtoneui, ttescript inns ot the wood of Colonoa. Ttno, GtnuaUmmt 
Ltiierala. xviii. Garden of Armida. Sficnscr, Parrit (Qum, vi, x, 6. 
MftunI Acidalc. Milton, Par. L<ni, iv, 314-370, The Tcrtestrial 

tt/ wHoi-0 gioriio : We are to under«1and gi<trno lo mean the 
biifing light or the full-ristcn Sun. 

\Utriva: Dante and his guides have just xurmounted the last 
rtep of the (Uirwav, and are standing on the edge of the plateau 
or table land at the summit. Dante now quits ihlM edee, and 
walka across the table land. Scarta</ini cTplKins n'vu, "r cstre- 
mitii di quel piano." 
S PftMiKdo la tampagna : Compare Inf. vii, 17 :— 
" Pijgliando ptii della dolenlc ripa." 
And /n/. nii, 18. ig:— 

" C<niJ prendcmnio via gii per lo aearco 
Di quelle pietrc.'"^ 
And Pur^. i, 107, io»:— 

"Lo Bol vi moBtreri. che surge omat, 
Pr«nder lo raontc a pid lievc sallta" 
IIJicHio l4nto: "Fra quelle delisic non potcva aver ^-oglia di 
Gorrcrc " (Cesari). Hcnvcnuto saj-s of Unto Unto that Dante was 


Canto xxviii. Readings on the Pnrgatorio. 433 

Su per lo suol che d' vig,n\ parte olivji.* 

Already Ciiger to explore within und aroimJ the 
heavenly forest, which, luxiiriiint am! evercreen. 
made the new-born day tempered to my eyes, with- 
out waiting longer I left the mountain's edge, very 
slowly roaming across the plain, over the soil that on 
every side breathed fragrance. 

Dante's delight in this beautiful region is <;iich, tliat he 
cannot hurr)' over any pait of it. He destiHbcs the 
soft wind wafted through the forest. 

Benvenuto says that the moral Dante wishes us tn 
deduce from the passage that now follows is that, 
however much Man, in a state of virtue, may find light 
winds, i.e. slight troubles, come upon him, yet they do 
not hinder him from performing his allotted duties any 
more than, in the Terrestrial Paradise, they crush or 
overthrow the trees that are in it. Although the 
branches bend where the wind strikes upon them, yet 
he tells us that the little birds are not prevented from 
resting upon them, and tilling the wood with their songs. 

entering opon a sacred and. to him, unknown ciMintry with fear 
and ttemblinK ; and he aWa witiheil to show the diflicutty oi the 
i>ew »nd lofty matter u|">n which he was entering. 

' oiira (cquivulctit tn the Latin okbai) iit the jrd xinKuUr 
imperfect tense of /•lire. Wc find the word twice used by Hoc 
c«ceio. See Decum. Ct'iom. ii, iVof. j: " Nctia lua camera ac 
n' cntr«!>, la quale di rose, iti fiori, d' ar«nci, c d" altri odori tutta 
oUva." Sec alio, Detam. Guifn. iii, p. 4 : " McHColato insiicmc con 

Joello (odnre; di mnltc uitrc cose, che per lo giardino cvli\-ano." 
n Ptttg. xxvii. II, 134, 13s, Vircil points out to Dante the softgraia, 
the (lowers, and the iJirubs from which we are to suppose this 
universal fragrance is exhaled :— 

" Veili r crbetta, i Fiori e Kli Hrbuscelli. 
Che qui la terra sol da si produce," 

CcMttrast the enchanting surround in^^s, and the aromatic per- 
fume of the soil as related here, with the jiihaHtty []c^cnIltian nf 
I the City of Dik, and its fetid atmosphere. (See !nj. n, 133-136.) 


Readings on the Purgaiano. Canto xxvitl. 

On' ftura doloc* seoza nigtAtncntot 
Avcrc in si. mi fcria per In fronte 
Non di pill colpo chc aoavc vonto ; 

Per cui k frondc, ircmolsindo prontc, 
Tultc c quanlc piCKAvano alia pa.rte 
U' la prim' ombra gitta il nunio monic : 

Non peri dnl loc csticr dritlo sp«rtc 
Tanto ctic gli augelkni per )c cim« 
Lasciasser A' opcrarc ogni lor arte : 

Ha con picna Icti^ia I' 6rc prime,} 
CanlAndo, riccvi^no intra l« foglie, 
Chc tcncvan bordoncg allc sue rime. 



* Utt' imftt dolci : This was th« light brccxe of rarljr inornin)> 
blowing from the Haftt. 

*itHxa mutamtnlo Avert in ti : On thiK paKsa|;c Dr. Moore 
witte* to me ; " Winds on earth involve a distuibance of the 
atmoiphcre in ilitlf. This mnvement followa altogether th« 
equable and calm movement of the Piimam UohiU, without any 
ditturbance of the particles of the uJr aa in earthly wind^. It only 
becomes perceptible when anmc obstatlc intcr^-encs, >uch as 
Danle'K forehead (1. 8), or the thiclt wood (II. 107, loS.i." 

J /' Art friuH : Scartaziini ccn»urc» those Commentatoni who 
have interpreted in here ae " houri," whereas he ai;recB with 
others who hold that the word stands for acirt. He quotes from 
Petrarch, part i, Son. cxaiv (in some editions 14J) :— 
" Pnrrai d' udirla, udendn i rami, c I' r^ 
E Ic frundi. e gli iiQgci lugnarai," etc. 
Bcnvcnuto »ayn that by the birds L>ante here means to cxpreu 
wise and virtuous men, who soar to the summilH of the virtues, 
and KinK the praiMs of Ood with joy. 

jj Untvan liotdoiu. One tieruc of banlone ik a cord of a violin, 
a lute, or other >trinKed instiumcnt: and teiitr borJont signifies 
to keep up an accompaniment. Ttntr hmdunt a chkthaiia [Gnu 
Diticnario,^ 6) means to licep pace with an>| one in conversation, 
uiiecdote or willicisms. In the Elyme^lifgietil Didionitty 0/ tkt 
Romance Lanruaf^fs cliujty from the German of F. Bits, by T. C. 
Uonkin, London. 1364, two distinct aigniflcationn ofboMonemre 
Itiven : ^i) from the Hal. Span. Prov. bordon, and the I-'rench bour- 
don a pilgrim's staff, and (a) from the French bokrdtm a humble- 
bee ; and houriioimtr to hum ; and the Bnfjlinh &urJ«n 0/ d itmg; 
and " if it be true that thi« word meant originally a long trumpet 
Of organ-pipe, it may be the same as the preceding borAuu ftom 
the tcscmblancc to a alan." 

Canto XXVIII. Reading t>n the Pur^ainrio. ^35 

Tal quHl ili ramo in ramo si raccoj^lie 

Per la pincta in sul lito di Chia»i,* 10 

Qukivd' Eolo t iicirocca I Tuor discio)c1te. 

"Ckiatti, nov Ctaue: Scartaxzini feels certain Ihut, although 
in ^incicnt limes the name was ClaHsU, and in more modern days 
Classe, yrt in Uanttr'K Age it muxt hnvt: been called Chiaxti, lor 
bath Butt and I^iidino Noealc of it by that name withaui ex- 
plaining (hat it HtDod for Claue. In the middle vtRea it was on 
the »ca shcirc, though the sea ha* since receded, and tcfi it fur 
inland; and now it in a dreary, pestilential, marHhy plain, un- 
tcnantccl nave by the m^Ki'liccnl early Christian Chuich of 
San' Apollinarc in Classe. which Henvenulo infarm« us wai 
built by JuRtinian, but much damaRcd by l.uitprand. Kin^ uf 
the I.unibiirdH. It whh the port of Kavcnna, and wa» ealted 
Cla»»H because Aucuntun used lo keep hi> Hvet there for the 

Kroteciion of the Adriatic. One can well imagine Danle. during 
ia exile al Kavenna, often walking an the sea shore ol Clai^Hc^ 
roamini; in deep thnuchc through the lovely woods, and tread- 
ing on the «ofl carpet of verdure, amid the Ivrittecine of the 
birdH, in the far famed Pincta of Kavcnna. In the beautiful 
work by Coriado Ricci, L' I'llimo Ri/ugio Ji DanU Alinhieri, 
Milan, 'i8c)i, pp. 114. 115, the authnr layn great weight on the 
perMtnal experience of the Pincta which Dante exhibits in hia 
comparison to it of the Divine Forest: " Anehe pii penonaJe 
ci scmbra il confrontg ch' cgli fa del mormorio complcMo delta 
fiircita del I'lirgalorw, con qucllo dclla pineta prcxv) Kavcnna, 
per tutta una serie di conaideraiioni che «eppc nccenn.irc &in dal 
Bccolo di Dante, c BtupcnJamcnIe, Bcnvcnuto tia Imola. Non i 
Koltanto il murmure Iievc c il cantur degli uccelh che, nclla de- 
acrixione poetica, corriapondono alia aclva di Clauc; c luiiu il 
quadm lo" sooi panicoiari. II confronto e il nome del luogo 
Ktanno II per tcstiinoniarc che vcramcntc 1' Alighicri dc8criM« la 
stia brexta sotto 1' imprcssionc di quclla di Cl«»c prtifnnila' 
mente mn ravigliona c poetica, come In trovarono cjuanti pcne- 
liafono in lei dul Boccaccio a Giorgio Byron I " 

tEiilo: .i-^olun WAM kinic nf the Lipari Ixlen, and midcd at 
Stromboli. The inhabitants of those isles used to imaK'"« '''at 
they could, by the nature of the ftaraei sent forth by the %''>lcanri, 
for«-(cl] ihc kind of wind* that might be expected, .-tolun was 
lupponed to have kept the windit imprisoned in ba);sof >kin. The 
Scirocco is the S. E. wind. See ViT^il's description £ti. I, $2, 
etc.) of the cave of ^oltia, and hit loouin*: the windii. 

i ScirtKfo : C. Kicci {(.«.) likens the lonR wide alleyn of (he Pineta 
to the aislea of aome va«t Basilica. Into them nu dazzling 
sunshine linds itv way, the liKht is «olt, subdued, and equable; 
a luauriant undergrowth o( sjirub& and Aowcts makea the air 

BB 2 


Rtadings on Ike pNrgaton'o. Canin .\X\*in. 

A toft bree/e thut hiitl no perinutution in itself smote 
me on the brow with iiu heiivicr Htrokc Ihan that of 
» gentle /cphyi ; by which the bouRhii. in tremulous 
accord, were one and all bent down towards that 
quarter (the Wcst^ whereon the holy mountain (of 
Pux^tor>'} cuHts its first shadow. Not however tio 
much diverted from thetr tiprif^ht position that the 
little birds upon their lopn had to cease from exer- 
cixine; their ekill ; but aini^inR with uncontrolled exul- 
tation they received the first brcc/ctt of the day amid 
the leaves which kept up an accompaniment to their 
minstrelsy, such ns from branch to branch is taken 
up through the pine wood on the »hor« of Chiassi, 
when jIvoIus lets forth the Scifocco. 

Giovanni Villuni (lib. ix, cap. 136) relates that, 
when Dante died in July (more modem research sa)'S in 
September), 13^1, he had just retumeii from an embassy 
to Venice sent by the Lords of Polenta ; and although 
there is no documentary evidence of this embassy, 
there is abundant testimony that during that summer 
Ravenna was at war against the allied States of 
Venice and Forli, to avert which war the embassy had 
probably been sent. These ducuinents ai% quoted by 
C. Ricci {of>. cii., pp. 145-154), who shows that, from July 
to October, the whole country between Venice and 
Kavcnna was extremely insalubrinuK. Ke also quotes 
a statement of Filippo Villani that the Venetians 

redolent with kromaiic fraK ranee ; nor can any violent vrinda 

[jcnctratc throu^li the thick foliage. He then add*: " t' quando 
o (ciroceo spim. dt tra Icvantc c mezzoKiomo. tutte Ic fronde 
del pinclo ravcnnutc, ponto sull' oria dell AdTioticc. n picrano 
ad ti<;i:tdcrtc mormorando con dolccjtia e con una Mpccie di nimo 
c di ircmiltf UKuaJe e eoatanle the 6 proprio de' pini, per la loro 
forma quasi plana al di sopra c per la qualitA dclla chioma a steli 
riK'di cd acuii. Cosi eli uccelli non inipauriti da slonnire im- 
provviRo. ni da troppo ondcgeiamcnto dei troiichi tchicitt Sufrifkt^ 
c forti, cantjino per Ic cimc Minca intcrrutione come ruccolu in 
dilcitoH) convcgno o in viva gara di voci c canti." 

^anto xxvill. KfOtiings o» the Purgatorio. 


refused to allow Dante a return passage to Ravenna by 
sea, atid thai hi- must have consequently travelled back 
by Chioggia, by the Delta of the Po, by the Monasterj* 
of Pomposa, aftcr\^-ards abandoned by the Benedictines 
in consequence of its pestilential climate, then by 
Codigoro, and by the lagoons of Comacchio. From 
there to Kavenna, if Uantc travelled that way. he must 
certainly have crossed the Pincta in the last few miles 
of his journey, and C. Ricci concludes : " Rivide, alfine, 
Dante la divina fiyrestn spenaeviaa; ma invano ausur- 
ravano ancora le acque scnrrcnti al mare, invano fjli 
uccclli usavano lor arte, mile cime, all' ugualc e dolcc 
mormorio dclle fronde ! La febbre ardcva i^ia ncllc vcnc 
del poeta, che pochi ^orni dopo, tra i B^li e f;li amici piit 
cari, esalava il faticato spirito! " 

I>antc now penetrates further into the recesses of the 
forest, and describes the waters that irrigated the Terres- 
trial Paradise, 

Gii m"Bvcan irniiportato i lenti pxni 

Dentro alia nclva antica '* ttinto, ch' io 
Non palcu rivctlcre ontl' jo m' cnira»i:t 

Ed ecco il piCi andor mi toUe iin tio, aj 

Che inv£i siniiiira con tiuc picciole ande 
Ptegava I' crba * chc in sua rivft umHo. 

*stit)aimUca : The Garden of Paradise U one of the pl(l»t (hings 
in Mun's htitoiy, sceinK that our fir»T parentv were placed iheie. 
Pttnic has taken the expression from Virjjil— aec .fii. vi, 1791 — 
" [(ur in iintiquuni «lvain, stabult altJi rcrnnini." 
'ioitdf io m' tnlriisit : Compare /«/. kv, tj-ij: — 
"Uii erav«in dalla nelvx rimassi 

Tanlcj, ch' id non avrei viato dnv' era, 
Perch' io indietro rivolio mi rossi," 
J Pitgmvu V frh« : Compare Virgit, Gtore. iv, i8, 19: — 
~ " At liquidi (ontcH ct itii);na virentiB musco 

AdsinI, cl tenuis fugicnii per gramina, rivuii.'* 


Readings oti Iht Purgalorio. Canto xxvill. 

By ihia time had my steps, (though) IcUurely, carried 
mc so far on into that primeval forest that 1 could no 
longer see hack to wh«re I h»i entered it : when lo. a 
Etrcani checked my further progress, which tovrards 
the left hand with its ^-entle tipples beiit the herbage 
lh;tt »prouled up on ila bank. 

This i& the river of Lcthc, which is supposed to prd the 
Terrestrial Paradise on the one side, while the river 
EunoL girds it on the other, just as the Garden of Eden 
was bounded by the Tifiris and Ruphrates. Lethe is the 
walur (if Oblivion, to indicate ihat the soul, which 
desires to attain to a state of innocence, must foi^et and 
cast behind it all those sins and failings that it has 
cither committed or known, in order to attain singleness 
of mind, and to remove evcrj' incentive to sin. The 
waters of Oblivion How towards the left, because they 
carry away the memory of evil, which is always figured 
as on the left hand. The sheep on the right, the goats 
on the left. Eunoc (from eiJi'oos, favourable), is the con- 
trast to Lethe, and brings back the memory of all the 
good that the soul has effected or known, that It may 
have good knowledge of all virtue, 

Uantc describes the purity of the water. 

Tuttc I' acqu« chv son di qun piii mondc, 
Ptrricno avcrc in si miKturn * alcuna, 
Verw di quclU che nulU nnNconde ; 30 

Avvcgna chc si mova bruna tmins t 

*iniituftt: This i)ie>nK ''Mdimenu impurity.* Compare Boc- 
caccio. Df£«m. Ginm. vi. Sm: x: " Kd era qwe«to lat;he(tA non 
piu profondo. the aia una Mtatura d' uoino inrino al p«ltu Iur|^; 
c MR/* Bvcrc in se miKlura alcuna, chiariiuimo il sua (ondo mo' 
Mravii eitaerc d' una minulisHtma ghiais la qual (ulla, chi altro non 
avcBM avuto a fare, avrcbbc, lolendii, potulo annovcrarc." That 
is, ihcr w-atvr was m) pellucid, that one could have couritcd (h«li(tk 
|>cbhle« upon itic pravclly bottom. I have before noticfd tiow ftc- 
<)ijentU' ttoccaccia tiaii taken pasttiiKet) in the jytttimfrut from tha 
Divina Cvi'tmidia, 

t BntHa bruua : It cannot be too often repeated that the liietal 

Canto xxviii. Readings on tk£ Purgatorio. 

Sotto r ombn pcrpctua, che mai 
Kaggiar non laacia »ale* ivi, ni luna. 


meaning of brum n not "brown," but "dark (w*™)." The 
DixioHario Petrocchi interprets it: "Vaca illuminnta; i)i cAlnre 
piuttoftto chc tcndc al ncro." Hence wc have also the- Tuxcan 
cxprcaoion fvrtart il brune, "to be in mourning"; tMlJ" imbriinire, 
"■t dusk." Compare aXuoPurg. iv, at : "quanda ruvatmbTuna." 
The ordinary Tuscan word for " brovrn " ia matTone, and a Tuscan 
ladvhaaKivenmethefnllowinicitpecimenii of what would be said in 
n shop : '' Plcaiic to nhuw me M>inc brawn ttatin " (Mi potrtbhe far 
vaUrc dft raio marronf?). "I should tike to lonk at Home brmm 
velvet cuTiaine " ( Vorru vederc dtlU lauit di vcliule marrwu). An 
EneliKh icft'iewcr of my RtaJiims on ihr Inferno tHket nie to ta*k for 
my interpretation of ftruiw: "To argue (he saysjthat because in 
TuscBoy at the present day 'to wear moufninR' is fvrtarr U hruno, 
therefore IJantc means black when he uiys brown, «cem* hope- 
leuty unactcnttlic." Will the reviewer tell' m what (acGordint; to 
him) Cacciaguida in supposed to mean by bnmo when in Par. xv, 
50. 51, he aays:— 

"... Icgf^cndo nel ma^nn volume 
U' non si muta mai bianco nfe bruno," 
which I have truninlHtcd : "rcAdini; in Ihc miKhly volume <af 
futurity) wherein is never altered either while ur black." Would 
the reviewer urgue that the page of the mighty volume was "white 
or frrturn 'V [n the same review he reproves me for saying that 
itraf^Ilo means, not a lla;;, but a file of men. He remaTkii : " In 
the hrtit place, .iratttUv docs not mean 'a hie,' but 'a company.'" 
taking Barrctti's Dictionary a* his authority. Whenever this re- 
viewer ha* censured me, I have made it my practice to appeal to 
Italians, and I referred ihc pcescnt position to two learned Tuscans, 
one of whom has i^ncd in the urmy. In answer In tnv ques- 
tion : "Come intcndercbbc Lei drapfeUv?" he promptly replied; 
"Pila di »oldati — un piccolo numen:)—cennmtnte non una tom- 
pagnia." The other Tuscan wrote : " Sotto drafiftUo trovo nel 
Petrocchi (the latest and most trustworthy dictionary): * pic cola 
quantitlldi snldati comsndati da un ufficiale iii/eriirre, e U deri- 
vajtionc vicne dat provenzalc trupil {dim. Aitmufe).'" If anything 
inore be required in pmof of my assertion that drappeUn meanH n 
file of men. I will refer readers (o the well-known work of Stivio 
Pellico, Le Mi£ I'riKioni, where in cap. Ix, I find : ''A sera venne 
il soprintcndcnlc, accompagnato da Schiller, da un ahro caporalc 
c da due solduti, per fare una pcrquisi^^ione. ... La prirna volt* 
chc vidi iiuti drapf>flk', uno strano pcnsiero mi vennc." etc, Tht 
drapfetto here eonii*ted of twoeorporal* and tw« soldiers in attend- 
ance on Ihc Superintendent of (he Stale Prison of (he Spielberg. 
*cli* mai Ruggiar Hon latcia ieU, etc.: Scartazzini doe* not 


Readiugi mi tkt Purgatorio. Canto xxviii. 

All the waters that arc the moi^t timpid here (m the 
world) would sccth to have in themtielvcK i>nme im- 
purity compared with this which (from its transpa- 
rency) hides nothing in iuelf; nIthouKh it mils along 
black Hud darksome beneath ihat Hcmpitcmal shade, 
that never suffers a ray of Sun or Moon to penetrate it. 

On this Benvenuto tibserves that such was the den. 
sily of the foliage, that neither the light of the Son 
nor Moon coutd pierce through the interlacing branches 
of the trees. 

Division II. — Dante next describes how they met a 
beautiful Lady by the side of the stream, who is 
RatherinfT flowers and singing. 

Benvcnula wishes us to mark that Dante now be- 
holds in reality the same lady whom, in the last 
Canto, he fancied he saw in ii dream, in the same 
dress, and employed in the same occupation. Ben- 
venuto thinks she is figured as being here to warn 
the purified souls that they cannot ascend to Heaven, 
without having passed through the hosts of the Church 
Militant, or without the preliminary two-fold washing 

share the onlninn of Buti And sAme other Commcnlaton, that 
there i^ 0. detp allegory ccinc<:ukd in th« above aix lineK. He 
thinks thai Dant«, in dcitcnbinK the holy forest, hud in hi» mind 
some of the pasaagca in Scripture that dcucribc ttic New 
JeruMJcm. Sec Hev. xxi, ij: " And ihe city had no need of the 
sun, neither of the moon, to <.hine in it; for the Kiory of God 
did lighten it, and the Lamb is the liRhc thereof." Ta>M> has a 
package in the GtruiaUmmt i.ititi«la [Canto xv^ (t. jft) which 
IS almoitt copied fruin the one here :— 

"Mmutia insicmc poi tra vcrdi sponde 

In protondo canal I' acqua %' adunn ; 

E soilo 1' ombrji di pcrpeluc fronde 

Mortnorando ticn va gelid* c bruna; 

Mb tnansparentc si chc non aisconde 

Dcir imo Ictlo auo vaghez^Ji alcuna : 

\i ftovra le «ue rive alta si estulle 

L' erbctta, e vi Ea seggio frcitco c molle." 

Canto xxviii. Headings on the Purgalvrio. 

in the waters of Lethe and liunoc \Vc sec Matclda 
thus engaged, just as, at the entrance of the A»ti- 
Purgatiiria, we Haw Cato preparing the souls by a similar 
preliminary washing of the face to ascend the mountain 
of Purgatory. 

Coi pii rikleHi e con glj ocelli pai&ui 
Di lit d«l Sumicello. [>cr mirttrc 
Ln Krnn vcria/ion dei frcM:hi mai :* 

£ \k m' iipparvc,t si coin' ei^ti apparc 
Subitamcntc cnsa the <1isvia 
I'cr maritviKlin tutt' altio pcn»arc, 

Una Donna soktta.+ chc «i gla 



*/rtscki mai : Maio properly >ignifi« a branch, covered with 
Icjtveii, which peasants plant on the lat o( May before tlic houacs 
o( ihcjr swetrthrarts, hanging upon il cakc«. fruit, etc. It i^ thus 
described by AllcKri (i'wjt t Rime. i6oJ :— 

•' E voglio 

Dinanxi atl' uscio tin ctl Jiccani il raajo, 

II qual di bcrricuocoli c liambcllc, 

Di melarancc dole! e confortini 

l-'aro uremito, c d' altrc cose belle." 
But Si:arta*rini thinkn that here Maia dimply means any hianch 
of a tree loaded with blossomn. In the Hhiclu-Koiiiuncc dialect, 
apokcn in the Grisons, rmiif signifies ii bunch of flowcn. Sec 
Donkin'i Htymoivgicai Dielionary of the Hiimante Lanennets. 

f jt' J(i m' af-^aivt . . . Donna mUHa : It ik only in Purg. uniii, 
119, that we k-xrn that M-iUUia \h the name of thii* bcautilul Udy. 
What Mnlelda she w«». has sivcn rise to a verj- (;rcat difference 
of opimon. Who, or what was it that suggested to Danic to use 
the name nt Matetdu fnr hix perKonificaitnn of spiritual activity ? 

Pictto di Duntc. Bcnvenuto, and all the old Oomtncntalors arc 
unanimous in thinking the personage to be Matelda of Canosia, 
the "Great Countess" of Tuscany. daURhter of Duke Boniface 
III, the friend and ally of I'ope tirc^nry VII 1 Hildcbrand), who 
endowed the Holy See with the ci^eat bulk nf her vast po«*c*sion«. 
Dante's fimt notion Beemn to have been to use the name uf Leah ; 
but lhou};h that ^ufltccd far his dtcom, it did not fulAI hin rc(|uirc- 
mcnts It^r the person who wax to introduce him to Beatrice and 
the I'rncesMcm of the ChiirL'h Militant, and afterwards to pass him 
through the river of oblivion of sin. These qualifications Dante 
found in the "Ureat Countess." Ilcr name must still have re- 
Munded in Tuscany, when D«ntc was writing as the impcisona- 

^^2 Headings on tiie Purgatorio. Canto xxviii. 

Ctnlando cd isccgliendo Bor da fiorc. 

tkin iif iilcul beauty i^t body and aoui uombmcd with (linus itctivit)'. 
It may have bct-n frntn her nairif that ho took his hiBtor>\ bul of 
course Dantc'H StaUltlit was not iht Nfalilda of history in the lunK 
wny that the Cato nf the Anti-pHrgtitiiTin wa% the Cfito of hiMory. 

Oi modern Comtncntalon the inajitrily hold the sbovc opinion, 
but then: is * strnni; and Ivarncd minority opposed to it. 
Ffatici-lli thinks it highly improbable that Dante, » Ohibelline 
poet, would have ko much extolled a woman who wat an ally of 
the Popcv, and alwayit wairin^ ai;ain»>t the Empire. Prot 
FrnnccdCO d* Ovidio, in his new and important work //' !'ur(^alorw 
t U iuo Prdudio, Milano. 1906, p. 573, a&ks how could Dante 
tepreitent as a beautiful yuunf- mitiaen of mndcKt -demeanouT. a 
fiery and tmpcrious old wiman nf seventy, who had been twice 
■nanied ? In a painphU'l lifatcltla tvclala^ Roma, \tjuo) Trof 
Micheic Schcrillo ci>ntcnd!> that the perinnace referred tn in 
Matilda, dautihter of the Rmpcrnr Henry I. Both Lubin (5liHfi, 
PP- Ji4-JSi)<'"!' "r. Dollinccr, KtronKly advnuilcthc claims of the 
Benedictine Nun, Mcchtildis viin Hackcbom, nho left "(ome 
writinKi of a mystical character ; but it has now been concluitveljr 
proved that nhc did not die until ten yvut* after the ft»«uincd 
dale of Danti:'!) viHiun. 

There can be no doubt that Dante is now uippnsrd to sec the 
verification of his dream, though the person i« different- In (he 
drcsm it was I.cah, now it ia Matetdn. It ik like Dante's dream 
related in f'i'rf ix, 19, i*/ 11^,, when the HaKle was seen in the 
drcKm instead nf I^ucia. Dante han been dreaming; of l^ah and 
Kachel 1 when he awake* he finds neither of them, but in their 
•tead Matelda, and aftcrwardK Hcalnce. Dr. Moore iSlu,iit% in 
OanU, iii, pp. iio-2i6j discusties the question in a mo«t ex- 
bautttive way. White nimsclf h"ldini: stronn'v to the senerally 
received explanation that by Mnlclda if, meant the "Great 
CountcM " of Tuscany, he remark* ilut the subjetl is one of the 
Ihornictt prohicmii in the Pn'iim Ccmnu^dn . Mntclda's office 
appears to be that of Guardian of the fourthly Paradise, much 
in the Mime way as Ihe ideallied Cain ii the Guardian of the 
lower slopes of the Mountain in .^ntc-Purgatoiy. She is perhaps 
the only permanent mhahitant of the Fail-i'utj^aturin. at was 
Cato ol the Aiti'Purgati>ri(<. She sccma In represent the active 
life in its hiKhesi aspect. The old<worH distinction between the 
Active and Conlcmplative Lives occurs frequently in the wortci 
of Dante. It i^ generally held that by three paim of symbols 
Dante ligure<i this antithesis: Leah and Kachcl in the Old 
Testament {Purg. kwH, 97-ioS)! Martha and Mary in the New 
'I'eatBment (C<>hv. iv, xvii, I. 94. et xiy.) : Matclda and (tcalricc 
in the Divimt Cu'iimtjia. Lciih and Malelda are both intrddut-cd 
OH galheiitig flowers: Kachel and Beatrice aic twice described 

Canto XXVIII. Readings on the PurgaUmo. 443 

Ond' era pints lutta Iti aua vit.* 

With my feet I stood still, but with my eyes 1 p%saed 
to the other side of the rivulet, to ga jte in wonderment 
ill the (jreat variety of theluxuriainl •thruhi : and there 
(on the opposite bank) appeared to mc— even ai> 
there often appears quite suddenly sumcthin^ which 
from very wonder drives all other ihoufjhts aside — 
u Liidyiilt alone, who went alonj; singing, and sclcct- 
ioj; from amanj^ the flowem wherewith aii her path 
was enamelled. 

Dante felt like one who, while in deep thought, has 
his ideas swept away by some unexpected sight. 

We now lea.rn how Dante addresses Matetda, en* 
Ireatinn her to draw nearer to the margin of the rill 
in order that he may tht; better converse with her 
PeelinK himself purified, he has an intense longing 

■s ftittinK bcnide eadi other in Heaven. Wc m»,y «lao notice 
that as Malclda tnnh charge of Duntc when Virgil rcijgned 
hia office a» DantcS Icailcr at the entrance to Earthly Paradise, 
so did St. Bernard become his Guide in the Bmpyrean Heaven, 
when FJeatrice quitted Dante, and aanumed her csaltcil scat in 
the Hcnvciily Kosc. 

• Oml' tra ^inta lulta la ma via : In The Alpiut Jtmnml, vol, «, 
No. 6q, p. 71, Mr, Douglas Frcshficld gives a mom iniercxtini; 
description o( the beautica o( the mountaiii meadows in the Val 
(t'lncisa, and the KorBcous mAxsei^ ni varicnatcd cnlour to be 
BCen in them; and he ihinlts it must have been from pernaniil 
experience oi thcin that Danlc described, in such K'o^'ing tcrinn, 
ihc Valley of the Princc&s (Pu>k. vii), and the awcct eladcn where 
Matelda catheicd fInwefK in the Oivina l-\neslii: "It loak Ub two 
hours tn wiilk aerota only a portion of the Incisa Alp. a paUur- 
age which stretches for inilcs westwards from the Col di Lans 
and Sett SasK. In mid-July il was clonoua with flowers beyond 
all Alpine tncadowa ] have ever aecn. The Scimer Alp. which 
1 crossed on Ihc following day. uas nothinf; to it. There were 
bays of rhododendrons, pools of centianii, lake* of blue lorcel-me- 
nota, lilies lawny and white, hrilliani arnica, fragrant nigtiiclla, 
and I doubt not many nihcr plants wbich would have delighted 
a botaniM by their ranty aii much as theiic pleased me by their 
profusion, A reader of Dante could hardly help trying to repeal 

£f the description of the valley of the creat princess on 
itain ol Purgatory " (Pu's- vii. jg-SiJ. 



to be brought nearer to the i;^-orks or virtue that 21 

represented by Matclda. 

— " Dch, bclla Donna, ch' ai raggi d' amore 

1'i Kcaldi, i' io va' credere ai scinbiiinli.*' 
Che ftoglion csscr Icatimon del coic, 
Vcgnati in vote''* <1) ttatrcti avanti,"— 
Diw' io a lei,—" verso qucau riviera, 
Tanio ch' io po»a intendcr chetucanti. 
I'll mi fai rimcmbrat, dove c quaj era 
I'roxerpinx nel ttmffti che jufdette 
La madrc lei, cd cll« prtmavcra." — t 

*umbiiiiili - Blanc saj-a ihe word iemhianU means featoreiT 
and L-Kpecmllv xo here, Ikchum: in the plural. Compare /n/. xuii, 
143-6 :— 

** ApprcMo il Duca a gran pasti sen ei, 

Turbato un poco d" ira nel sembianlc." 
Scaria^jtni nays nf umhianM, that the principal (eatureK an the 
even and the hmile, and quoted Danir')! own word* in the Cim- 
xoKt (at the opening of Canvtviv iij) that bcf^nn, " Amor che nella 
mcntc mi ragionK." air. iv : — — 

" CoHC apparixcon ncllci kuo aapnto, 
Che mostran dc' piaccr del Faradito: 
Dico negli occhi c nel buu dolce rlao ; 
Che Ic ri reca Amor com' a suo loco.'' 
Compurc too ViUk Niovti, § ij, aonncl vlii, 3a : — 

" 1^ viso moKtra lii color del core." 
Compare also CiMi-. iii. 8, II. 71.90: " E in questi dur luoehi dko 
io, che appatiacoRO quciii piaceri. dicendo: ' S'tgli octlii 4 mtl 
tao di>U* riso.' Li quali due luo^hi per bella ximtlitudine hi 
ponsonn appcllarc bakoni della IJonna che ncllo cdifiitn del 
corpD abtia. cioi I' Anima. pcrocch^ quivi. avvcKnache quiM 
velata. *pei>»e volte li dtmosira. I)itnostra«t neelt ivcMi tunto 
manifcKla, che conoMer si nuiV la «ua prcKctitr pantionr, clit 
bene li mira. Onde concioHuacovachi sci pu^Bioni tianti prupric 
deir Anima umana, dclk quail fa mcniinnc i1 filovoto nella »ua 
Htili'rUa tioi gr,t:ia. ulo. mhtricfntia. inviJiii, aniore e ttrgixtit. il< 
nulla di qucfite puole I' Anima eitsere paMionaia, che alia finentni 
de^li occhi lion vegna la sembiiDia, m per gtande virlu dentro 
non si chiudc." 

t/nifMivn) .- Both Moore and Scarlu/ini Feel »lront;l)' that 
frimavtr» here mcann the itowera of Spring that I'foscrpmc had 
Been it;atherinf; when seired by Plutn, and Scarlafiini add* 
(hat the followini; quolalion from Ovid, Mtlam. v. yib-yji), 
dtidcB every doubt on the »ubject : — 


:anto xxviir. ReadiMf;s tm the Purgahrio. 


'■ Ah beautiful I-"dy, who art bitsking in the rays o( 
love, if I ntiiy trust Lu \\\y reaturus, vvhicli aie wont 
to be the witnesseH of the heart, let the will come to 
ihe«," said I to her, "to draw so far forward towards 
this stream, that 1 may hear what thou art sinKinK- 
Thou Tn»kcfit mc remember where and what was 
I'roserpine, at the time her mother lost her, and she 
(Proserpine, lost) the tlowers of spring." 

Dante meanN that Matclda looked as did Proserpine, 
when Pluto first saw her gathering flowers in Sicily, 
at the time Ceres, her mother. lost her, and Proserpine 
lost the bright world, and the joy of the sprintj flowers. 

Benvenulu considers that Dante wished to express 
to M sit el da : "Thou seemcst to me like a goddess, 
beautiful and modest as Diana the goddess of chas- 
tity." Diana was called I-una on earth, and Hecate 
or Proserpine in Hell ; Diana being properly her name 
in Olympus. 

In beautiful language Dante now describes how 

" l)ea terntiL mxttto 
Et mKlrcin ctcomitcs. sed malreiT) sKpiua, ore 
Clamat ; et, ut Kummit vCBtcm laniamt nb ora, 
Collccti florti tunicU cccidcrc icmiaH*." 
Compurc also Virs- Kucol. F.d. ix, 40, 41 ; — 

'■ Hie vtT purpurcum : varin« liic Huinina circutn 
Pundit humuK (lores," 
Onntc UKCH (he word again to »ignifv ''jUtaitri " in Par. XMK, 
61 6j;— 

" E vidi lumr in forma di rivicra 

Fulvido di fulgore, intra due rive 
Oipintc di mirabil primavera." 
The following is Ruti'a interprcialion of the parage in ihe text : 
" i'rimuvcrti ■ • > , eioi lo pralu, e U verdura, nclla quale clla 
era a coglicre fiori." And to thiscommcRt the Gron DiiwiMrw 

" li i fiori che a Ici, rapitn, caddcro di grcmbo." 
Sca.rlazzini notices thai in Tuscany the tlowcr which i» one 
of the fir>t tg *how in spnnK, a kind of daisy, ia called prima, 


Reailingi oh th< Pargalorio. Canto xxvtil. 

Matclda complice with his request by turainji; towards 
him, and drawing near enough foi' the words of her 
song to reach him across the stream. 

Come 81 volj{c, can le ptnnte strette 

A (tfrra ed intra s^, dontiH chc balli, 

E picdc innanzi piedc a pcna mctte, 
Volse*! in sui vermigli cd in xui g^inlli * j5 

Fiorelti veno me, mm altrimenti 

Che vcrgine chc g\i occhi one»ti Bwalli : t 

*vtrmigli . . . gititii : See Ruti on thia: "Dice I' auImv cbe 
li fluri erano vfrnullic giuHi per dare sd inlcndcre chc li ctcRipli 
vinuutii, in bu quiilt tc)(nanu le luro nITMioni k peisonc virlu<n< 
chc sano date a Ic virtii atiivc, sono cttcmpli chc proccdono 
dn cariti, tnfiammanti d' nmore di Dio e del prAutmo; c p«r6 
(ingc chc niano vcrmilli: e houo tutti puri c »plcn<licnli come c 
r OTO c peril 6ng<: chc iiiiino gialli." tn the Libro Jtlla Gratia 
Sf<tial(, alluded to abavc, and quotctl by Lubin <,ot; cU. p. Hy), 
Ihf folloning mystic viwon of Mcthlildis von Hackebom n 
related, whk'b bearn a curiouK analogy In Ihtnte't <leacripUoa 
of Matelda ainung the ilowerti in the Ei^rlhLy Pa.radiBc: **ln 
un' allra viiione la Beats Vcrjjine le uppaive vcatiia d' un abito 
color di ^aSTcrano [taffron col^rai], su cui vi crano rose ronci 
e nellc >[e!i!ic vi craiio intesHutc con arte maraviKtioMa ro«e 
d' oro. II color giitlln. signitica la di lei umiltfc, cnlla qual« 
etla ni notlopuuL- a tutic Ic creature: le rotie nntt la coatanza 
della iti lei poxicnxa, la quale clla mile c pazientc tcnnc in o^ni 
oo&a: k rose d' oro I' amore, con cui clla faccva tuttc tc losc, t Ic 
terrninava nell* amor tli Dio," 

tavvalli: The primary' incaning of awaJlsre is '*Fart in » 
valh, tioi a tasto. Spiugtrt i< SfatiJare in g\tt " {Gruii lyisionarioy 
Hencc we ({ct the iignification of " to lower, lobcnddoMn "(I'.it.). 
Compare Furg, xiii, bi -bj : wrhcre blind bcKKi^ts arc de»cnbed lyian 
crouched at the door^ nf churches, each bending dnxm hts head W 
a& to rest it on hia neighbour's shoulder: — 
''Co»t li cicchi, a cm la roba falls, 

Stannu ai pcrdoni a chiedcr lor bisogna, 

E 1' uno il capo sopra I' nltro avralla.' 
In Conv. W, 35, II. 70-88, Dante in describing 5(odcaty, refers to a 
paiMRe in StatiuK (Tkth. ii, 3]0-2;3), where Ihc two maiden 
daughlct^ of Adrattuk. when biought into (he prescrKe of two 
strangers, inodcatlj' casi down their cye»:— 

" [bant insignct vultuquc habituquc vcrcndo, 

Candida purpuieum fuaic super ore niborem 

Uejectscquc ^enaii." 

Canto xxviii. Rtadingt on the Purgalario. ^^y 

E fece t preghi miei nser contcnti, 

SI ttpprcRMindo ai, chc il ilakc suano 

Veniva a me ca' mni intend i m ent i. * 6o 

Even »& u lady who when dancing turnit herself with 
feet close to ihe ground and (close) to each other, 
and scarcely puts one fool before the other, so she 
(the beautiful Lady) turned towards me, (moving) 
over the scarlet and yellow flowcris, not otherwise 
than a maiden who lowers her tnodext cyc»: and 
mude my entreaties to be contented by approaching 
so near, that the sweet sound (of her song) came to 
me, and with it its mciiDLn);. 

Not only does the sound of her voice now reach 
Dante, but he can also plainly distinguish her woi-ds; 
and she furllier increases his rapturous delight, by 
raising her beauteous eyes to his. Notwithstanding 
his earnest longing to sec Heatrice, he is greatly moved. 

ToHto che fu Ik duve 1' erbe *ono 

Bagtratc gift f dall' onde del bel liuine, 
Ui Icvar gli occhi »ui>i mi fccc donc^J 

"* inUtidimatti : Tommasfo interprets (his as eitiiiftJi, and tajr* 
that in MotilBiKnc wc ftnd enttailtntetil used where "thought" h 
implied. He alHo qunics the followini^ rrom Boccaccio, Pttam, 
Giorn. ix, Nov, tj: "QucMe parole |ien»andOt c non polcndo di 
eNse cotnprcndcrc n& Jntcndimcnlo nc fiutto alcuno." Andreoli, 
followed by Fraticetli and Scartaizini, Jnlerpretw: "Cn' siioi 
concetti, con le paratc del cnntn chinrc c dislintc." 

+ ^id .' Giuliani (MarKiniitia. quoted by Poletio) canuidera th>t 
wc are not to lake ji^i'i) in this passage aa "una panicclla ricm- 
pitiva, come parve al Lombardi: ma w non i deterniifiajEiune 
di tempo, serve a dinoiart un deierminalo spajiio di luogo ncl 
commenlo," a* in J^-rg. i, _jo ; — 

" L& onde il carro gii era sparitOL" 
I mi/tte rfoNo ; CompcLrc Inf. vi, 77, 78 ; — 

" Anciir vo' cnc tn' integni, 
E che (Il piu parlnr mi facci dono." 
And Purg- \Kxi, 136-137 ; — 

" Per ^tutio fa nni j^tafin che diavde 
A lui la t>occa tua. . . ." 


RtaJings mt the Purgaiorio. Canto xxvik. 

Nod credo the xplcn^oKC tantulumc 

Sotto le ctfilia a Vencr« trafiiu* 63 

Dal RkIip. (mot di tuilo tuo costume. 
Mllft ridca ilitir altra rivn dntin, 

Tntcnda t piii t'olur J con Ic sue muni, 

Che 1' alta tcrrt senza seme i^tta. j 

So soon BK she hud rcitched the fiist spot where 
the grass is bath«d by the waters of the hJr stream, 
Khe did me tlie gnce to raise her eyes. 1 do not 
believe that so brt|{ht a radiance shone bcnc«th the 
eye-lids of Venus when transfixed by her own aon 
(in a way) quite contrary to his wont {(.c accidcnt- 
ully). Upon the right bank opposite smtlin); she 
Ktood, gnthcring with her bantlx yet more Aower» of 
mtiny hiicH which that elevated region produces with- 
out sowing. 

Bcnvcnuto says that this was the highest place in the 
world. Dante now relates that his desire of pasMng 
acro<ss the stream to join the unknown Lady was so 
{H'cat, that, although the rill was only three paces 
wide, he look as great a dislike to it as Leander did 
to the Hellespont, which separated him from his 
beloved Hero. 

*Viutrr trafilttt T>al figlio: The mfaninfi of Ihw simile *• 
that Hcason and Intellect are brijthter in Matvlda, emblem »f 
the Active Life, and whose eyes ate full of l>ivine Uo«, than 
in the eyes nf Venus, who was llic ivpc o( pleasure in the thmj^« 
of this world. The fable here alluded to is taken ffom Ovid 

t Tratndfi, 1 1. gathetinK yet more (towers than nhe had aJrcadjr 
leathered. A few read trat'taiuU', Buii among other*- This would 
have the »ens* of twintinK or plaiting the flower*. 

* iiJar for coU<ri : used here to mean flowers. Compare Pro- 

pc«ius,W.. i, Ei(g-i».9=— , , , „ 

" Adnpicc qooa subinittat humun rormosa colore*. 
%stnta U»\e otta : Compare Ovid. .V^Miw. i, 107-108:— 
" Vcr erut xtcrnum, placidique tcpenlibus auris 
Mulccbant 2«phyn natos sine seminc flona." 

^antoxxvnt. RiaJiiigs on the P$4rgaicrio. 449 

Tie pauii * ci faccii il liumc lontan! ; 70 

Ma Elltapnnto, clove pau& Xerseit 

Ancora frcno ■ luttt argogli umani, 
Piik odio dii Lcandro non soffcrac. 

Per mareggiarc I intra, Sesto ed Abido, 

Che quel ti dft mc, pcrchi allor non &' aperact! 75 

* JTr* ^w: These three pai;cs, which s«par«(« Dante from 
Maielda. remind one of the three ateps at the threshold of Pur- 
Eatory (see Pure. \x, 94, et te^.). Dante «ill surmount these 
three obatacle* ny three ads of penitence, ramely. Contrition, 
ConfcsBlon, and Satisfaction. Scarta<zini thinks that between the 
top of the stairway and Lethe ii the Ante-Terrestrial Paradise, 
which VirKiI may enter, hot may not go beyond. The TcricBtrial 
Paradise on the side of the earth is bounded by I-ethe, which 
takes a<v«y from the soul every memory' th&t is only earthly, and 
unfitted for the Kingdom of Heaven ; on the side of Paradise the 
Terrestrial Paradise is bounded by Eunoc, which restores to the 
soul the memory of any Kood deeds that it wrouRht which may 
have made for it treasures in Heavett. 

f Xertt : Compare De Uontirrbia !t, 9, II. 49-60: " Post hoe vero 
Xcrxeh Darii FiUua ct rex in Persia cum tanta f;cnlium multitudinc 
mundum invasit, cum tanta potcntia, ui 1 ranaitutn cnarinAMHinab 
Europa dirimcntis, Inter Seston ct Abydon, pontc superaveril. 
Cujus operis admirabilis Lueanus in itccunda Pharsaliae niemor 
fuit. Canit entm ibi sic :— 

■Talis fama canit tumiduin super xquora XcTxeni 
Conitruxisse vias;' 
et <andeni miserahiliter ab inctepto repulstia, ad bravitim per- 
venire non potuit." 

I nwrtgeiart: This word mean* more than " becaane its waters 
flow," asT translated the passage in my lirsl edition. It essentially 
refers to a boiaterous tempestuous nea. Scartauini renders the 
pa3«age : "Per I' ondegeiare impetuoso doUe sue acque." It 
mast not be forgotten that the current in the Dardanelles is 
exceedingly strong. 

$ tjiul mcan« tlic river Lethe. 

II I' aptnt : ThiA refers to the two miracles wrotight for the 
Children of Israel, first, of the parting of the waters of the Ked 
Sea, and «condly, of those of the River Jordan. Compare Purg. 
xviii, 133.135:- 

" Pnma fue 
Morta la gentc a cui il msr s' apente, 
Che vedessc |ordan le crede sue." 


Readingi on tlu Purgatorio. Canto xxvii 

The stream kept us three paces apart ; but the 
Hellespont, at the »poi where — even now {rcmem- 
hercd as) x curb to ail human pride — Xerxes crossed 
it. did not endure more Kntfcd frtim Leander, be- 
cause ita waves roll tcmpcstuouel)- between Sestos 
and AbydoK, than this (little stream endured) by 
mc, because it did not then and there cleave asaitder. 

Bcnvcnutn says that Dante conipitrc^ himself to 
Leandcr, Matclda to Hero, and the little. stream to 
the Hellespont. Leander hates the sea, Dante hates 
the rill. 

Up to this time Matelda has not spoken, but she no\ 
addresses herself to Dante and his companions. [t_ 
is evident from her words that the three Poets hs 
in their faces exhibited wonder that she should 
smiling playfully- in &o sacred a spot. 

'• — Voi aiete nuovi* c for»c perch' io rido,"— 
Comincid clla,— " in qucsto loco clctlO 
All' mnana nalura per Huonido, 
Maravigiiandot tienvi alcun loapettoi 
Mtt luce rende il salmo Dilwtaxli,l 
Chv puoic diHncbbiftf voiiirD intcllctto. 

"Ye arc new comers." the bc^an, "and perchance 
some doubts may keep you man'olling why I should 
aniilc in this place act apart for the cradle (/i(. nest) 

* niKit'i ; Com pare /n/. iv, 5], where Virgil says : — 

" Io era nuovo in qucMo stato," etc. ^^^ 

t MurtttiglianJQ : Ucnvrnuto's paraphrase of tbit pauag^T 
tueful: "Voi. scilicet, tret poetv. iule niiovi, el novit4« rci 
fMnt ailmirationem, qaaai dicat ; von eslix ijKnari hujuii rei, e 
ftir»d nktut loiftlta tiimvi maruviglutndo, quia crcditii quoJ Mm 
philt>capta U.t. Imt-striciten\ ui lu diccbas paulo ante mihi. 
fink' io rub, cam risus non vidcatur laudabilis in muliere per- 
fccia eiiam in loco perfecln." 

I OiUetatti t "For Ih^u, Lord, hast madi- mo i^lad ihroufh 
thy work: I will Ifiumph in the works of thy handi" (/*! 
xcii, 4}> 


Canto x^VIll. Readings on tht Purgaiorio. 451 

of ihe human race ; Hut the psiilm DeUclaiti afTordii 
(he liKht that can uncloud >-oui intellect. 

The words of the Psalm will make it clear to them 
why Matclda can be ^lad and rejoice iii this sacred 
spot. Her laughter is pure and holy, because inspired 
by the sweel loveliness around her: nor can sin, that 
was first committed in the Earthly Paradise, and 
which caused Man to be driven forth from it, disturb 
its quietude in any way whatsoever. 

She addresseK herself lo Uanle personally, having 
noticed that, whereas he had before been walking 
behind his companions, he is now in the front of the 

E tu che «ci dinanzi, c mi prcfCAili, 

Di' s' altro vuoi udir, ch' io vcnni prcatn 
Ad ogni lua quntion, tanto chc Iwali."— 

And thou who standesi foremost, and who didxt 
make a request to me, say if thou wouldst hear aut;ht 
else, for I came prompt to (answer) cver>' one of thy 
questions, so far as may stifTice." 

Division III. — Dante now puts to Matelda a <]ues- 
tion about the wind and the water, the existence of 
which seem to him to contradict the teaching received 
from Statius in the explanation which he gave of the 
earthquake (s« xxi. .f3-57)- 

StatiuB had told him that on the Mountain of 
Purgatorj' there was neither wind, nor rain, nor frost, 
nor dew, nor snow, nor clouds, nor lightning. {Canio 
xxi, 40-57.) This information is now apparently 
contradicted by his finding water in the Terrestrial 
Paradise, and hearing the breeze rustling through the 
leaves of Ihc forest. 



Readings on the PurgaUtrio. Canto XXVIir? 

— " L' «cqtta."— disa' io,— " e il Buon rfefU forest^ 
Impugna dcntro a mc novella Mc 
Di co«a. ch' io nil' conlraria « f|ueMii," — 

"The water," said I, "2Jid the fnarmnring or the 
forvst, miliuic against a recent belief (implanted) 
within me (by the words of Statius) about some* 
thing that I heard contiary Io this." 

Matclda proiniscs to solve Dante's doubts, and ex- 
plains Io him that the winds up there are due to 
diflerenl causes from those which prevail on eartt 
and originate in the rapid f^rations of the heaven) 
which cause certain movements in the air that 
semble winds. 

Ond' elU;— "Io dkcrA come procede 

Per Hua caRinn cio ch' ammirar ti face, 

E puighcfft * la ncbbia chcti fiedi:. 
Lo Hommo B«n,t chc *^\o cuo a si piace. 

Tccc r uom buono,} e a bene, c qunio loco 

Diede per arra § a lui d' eterna pace. 

* pHrthtrIt la iMMia, ct acq. ; Compare acvcral sentences in D* 
A/on. ii, I, IL ]6*4i; "Vcrum . . . ut »ol Kttiitia qui dlBJeciii 
n«bulia malutinia oriena luculcntus irradiat . . . lucem corrcc- 
lioni* cITundcre mavuli, ad diruntpendum vincula ipiorantix.'j 
etc. And further on, tU 51-38: "Nam per hoc . . . non solun 
ab oculia Kcgum el Principum , . . i^norantix nebula cluctui.'^ 
Compare also Inf. fii, 70, 71 :— 

*' O creature sciocche. 
Quanta ignoranxa i quctia chc vi offendc \ " 

f Lo tomiiw Ben: *'0«ub est lummum bonum ftimplktter, 
non RDltim in aliquo gcncre vcl ordinc rcrum. . . . Oportet 
cilin bonum nit in iJeo, aicut in prima cau»a omnium non uni- 
voca, qu6d Rit in eo excelknttuMmo fflodo; et propter hoc dtiu 
lur luminum bonum " (St. Thoni<B Aquinas, 5h><«i>i. TAa^/. par* 1 
ijo. vi, art. 2>. 

t F(C€ r Hvoi tfuimo : " Iddio, cbc t sommo bcnei fcce Aduol 
bunnn, Niccomc buono aitcftcc ; c fecclo a buono fine, cioi a fia 
di datgli luofio glorioBO cd ctcrno: c queiito Paradiso terrcno I 
diode par arra del pagmcnto. ch' c(;li intendca di (arc del Para' 
diao cclctliak" (/,' Otiima ComjiwhIo). 

$ arm .* Scartai/ini taya that God Iiad destined the Terrestrial 
Pinidiac as the eamest-mone)' and pledge of the Ueasednesa ol 

Canto xxvril. Readings tm tJu Purgatorio. 


Per sua difTalu qui dimoro poco ;• 

Per sua (lidaUa in pianto ed in affannu 9$ 

Camliitt oncMn riso c dolcc gjaco. 

Whereupon she: " I will declare unto thee how Troni 
ita own cause proceeds that (cfTcct. mmely, the wind 
nnd the water), which makes thee to wonder, and I 
will clear away the mist which strikes upon thcc. 
The Supreme Good (r.r. God), Who takes pleasure 
in Himscir alone, created Man good, and (prcdcif- 
titled him) for Kood, and bcatowed on him this place 
as an earnest of eternal peace- Through bis default 
Mitn made but a short sojourn here ; thiou^h his 
default he exchanged innocent joys and gentle pan* 
tiinc!! for lamentation and sorrow. 

Benvenuto remarks that our first parents had quiet 
rest without toil, safety without fear, peace without 
war, health without fatigue, freedom without slavery. 

FlcBVen, for the fruition of which he crcnlcd Man. Compare 
In/. %\, ijd : " Non t nuova Kgli cii'ccchi miot talc «tr»," on 
which Huti cutiimcntinK. nays: "Till arra, ciui tal patio: am 
fe la caparra, chc i fcrmcxia del patto fatto." The French word 
is •irrhii (plural). Zamhaldi {Voeabalario lilimoloeini thliniif. 
CittA di Ciiolello, 1889, p. 7r, R.) say t that arrm = nrrha, abbre- 
vixtcd rr»in arrlut/idn, a Phicnician word that had panned fimt 
into Greek and then into Latin, is the sum which the huyer pa);s 
in advance 10 the seller, and which he loxes if he doei not fuliil 
the contract- Thi* Kum in modern Italian i» called fafurra, 
whiL-h sieentB a hybrid compound of the phrasic dipt arrham. 

••/Ml Jimori poco: Accordinj; to Ruii, the ihcologian» sup- 
puKcd Adam and l^vc to have only remained in a state of inno- 
cence for five hour", and in Paradise itself only for seven hours. 
It was thought that God placed Adam in Parndi«e at the ihint 
hour, and save him hin commandmenls, and prcAcnIcd the 
animals to him, for Adam to give tlicm names- He then cauKCtI 
a deep sleep to fall upon him, and formed Eve out nf his lib, 
the serpent then came and templed live, and after the ninth hour 
Ihey ale of the forbidden fruit, and were driven out of ParadifMr. 
See Par. xxvi. 1 ^^ where Adam sayi: — 

" Nel monte, chc si tevii piii dall' ondji. 
Pu' id con vita pura c disoneata 
Dalln prim' ora a qiiella rhe seennda, 
Come il sol mula quadra, I' ora scstii." 

Readings on the Purgat^o. Canto xxviil 

and. more than all, life withoul death; but Ihc tnwe 
happy ilicy were before their lall, Ihe more untiapp;^ 
were ihcy after it. 

MateWa next shows ho%v God, in ot^er that the 
newly created Man might enjoy In peace tlie gutK) 
thai had been prepared for him, gave him an abode 
which had an immunity from all permutation. 

Pcichc il turbfir,* che lolto da sc fannot 
L' »alu«ion dell' «cqtia c dclla Icna, 
Che quantci poison retro si calor vanno, 

Alt' uomu non Ibccixc alcuna lEuerra, i 

Qucslu monic talio versa '1 ckl tanto ; 
R lib«fo n' t d' indi ovc si sierra. 

In order thnt the disturbitnce which the exhalations 
of the water And of the eurth occasion down Iwlow it — 
which, sr> far xh they are able, ascend nfler the bent 
— should not bring any annoyance to Man, this 
mountain was made tn rise to so great an elevation 
towards heaven : and is (consequently) free from 
these (dtnturbin^ influences) from above that spot 
where it i* locked in. 


* larhktr : " 11 turbamento die nelle baoNc reginfii della U 
avvicnc [icr Ic mctcorc scqu»Ki: c vcfllonc, nltribuiiccii oilima- 
iiicntc dal Poria all* cHttln/iunc dell' acqua c dclla terra, cioc al- 
r c\'a|>»riiniinv : Ih quale ben dice che, quanlo |iuc>, va dtetro al 
calore, liot-, dal calore dipende, KiuMa legRi opportune. Acctocch*. 
poi, quel turbamento non tiioIcMiikm: I' uomo, cbr dovcva. in- 
nocentc, etifterc Telicc unchr au quc^u tcri-a, tiu|>p«m* iI I*»cia din 
r abiiaiioiK ai novlri prof^enitori denlinnta Ka1i>i« coti |;mr 
cncnlc vcno il cicio, tanto dn non vj csscr posi-ibili quci (urbaj 
mentl" CAntondli in TnuimasJu'i ComonMuty.. 

t totto da ii faniu' . "idcHi, inftii »Uitudincin ivtius monl» 
quia ab inltnitu vcri purf^atorii supra nan fmnt" (HrnvcnuloJ 
"svtto u qucBtu inunie"^Ai)dfc<ili). "Aflinthf il turb4mcnu 
chc iotio rfi ti appic del mimtc, i pnxlultn dalle cula/inni deli, 
Tacqua c dellj ictra," etc. <Fralicelli>. "Sollf i.i it; b puiti< 
cells ti si rifcriue a qiuilf muitlt. del verso lol : e dice Ja u . , 
pcrchV il punio chc at dcicrmina coll' ti^prcMJonc i«Ji ovt ti t^rra, 
((I \MOfp d«IU porta del pargaiurio; c il tcmtiiic ondc p<rtlr dct 1| 
pensicra di qiullo chc s' csprime" (Riagioli). 


Canto xxvrn. RtadtHRt an the Purgahria. 


The meaning is thai, from the Gale of Purgatorj' up 
to the Terrestrial Paradise, all atmospheric influences 
are inoperative. I'VaticelH ^ays the ancients were 
ignoi-ant uF the gravity of the air which causes the 
lightest vapours to ascend upwards, and they believed 
that the<<c had a natural tendency to go to the Sun. 

Up to this point Matclda has conlirmcd what Dante 
had already heard Trom Statius, and she now proceeds 
to explain to him the origin of the breeze that moves 
the foliage, and of the water of the river Lelhe. 

JJcnvenuto thinks that, because Dante might be 
supposed (o say: "O beautiful Lady, ihou hast suf- 
ficiently explained to me why oui- winds from Iiarth do 
not extend as far as these attitudes, but that is not 
what I ask. I want to know the origin of this wind up 
here that causes the leaves to rustle," therefore Matclda 
answers Dante: — 

Or, pcrch^ in circuito * tutto c quaato 
L' si vnlge con la phmk v&lls, 
Sc non gli h rotio il ccrchio d' alcun cvnto, 



■ * Or, ptnhi (M fiftnila, etc. ; Scartaiiini writes that, according 

m to the astronomical notions thai prevailed in the lime of Dunlc, 

r the canh remains fitted in the centre <)f the univurtc. The air 
revolves with la pnmu vtilla, i.c. with the Primum Mobile, and with 
all the heavens beneath it from Ea§t to WtBt. lor the revolution 
of the Priinnm MahiU causes the air below it to revolve mIml 
The vapours thai (orni the wind oftirn ini)iaii to the air down 
here a different nintion ihun fruin Ka»t to Wc»t. Up there 
vapours do not rise : therefore the air up there is alwa^i gyrating 
in .iccnrdance with the Primum McbiU, unleu it be intercepted 
anywhere by any exIrancouK force. Therefore the air moving 

»(r[ini East tu Went hnil!i leaiHtunce up there in the densiil)' of the 
forest, an<t that produces the sound of which Uanic bcg^cii 
Matclda to tell him thccautc. Scattait^ini say^that alt the many 
Ci<nin^entalor)i he hat contulted interpret At primA i-Slta aa the 
Primuiu Uofrilt, Anlonelli alone thinks it mcanN the Sphere 
of Pirc, but Scanazzini obnert-eN thai Dante adhcrea In ihe 

45^ Rtadings on the PurgatonQ. Canto XXVlllr 

I n que«tA allezEA, cti« ttMm i dlKiolta * 
Nell' acr vivo, isl molo percotc, 
B t» sonar la sclva perch* i foha ; 

Now secin); UiAt the whole atmosphere revolves in a 
circuit together with the first aphcrc that revolve* 
{i.i. the Primunt Mobih), no long as it* gyratio 
mccis with no interruption at any point, on this elc- 
vaied spot, which is wholly tlisengaged in the pure 
air, this movement strikes, and makeft the forest. 
because it is thick-set, give forth a sound. 

She nrieariK that this elevated plateau, on which the 
forest 'm. situated, is open and not locked in by other 
mountains, and the wind that exists here is nothing 
else than a movement of the air. 

Matelda next shows Dante how fruits arc generated 
in the Terrestrial Paradise. All the trees there have 
in their branches a superabundance of seed, and as 
the Divine Forest is smitten by the peculiar wind de- 
scribed above, the air is impregnated with these seminal 
properties, and being whirled in a circular course 
round the eailh, it is carried round to those parts that , 

i*toI«maic system, according to which \hc ninth tphcre, or tlw^H 
hrimam Mubik, revolves wnth Ihc ^rcuteiit velocity round the ^H 
earth in twenty-four hours, and communkatcs its motion to the 
cieht other lower iphereti conlained within it. 

*ekttuUai d»i(ioU,t Nflf atr i-kv: "Gil hi % dctlo vhe dalU 
pnrtm in m il mortte si diKchiude ncllo, region pura <lvll' kere, chc 
dice acri vho per essere d' o^ni (crrcstrc v«porc scarico [•<"- 
huttteuiJ]" rfiiaKi»1i). Wiltc reads here die l* lutlo I diuMlf tn> 
slead offh lutl-t i .fiti-iu/(>i. .\nlonelli {af. Tommasfo} Mvn that 
Danlc uses the cxprcsiiun i*iii> lu signify that the air wnsabsolulcly 
pure, Bncl conicqucnlly cut off Trom every cxhalnlion of Ihc region 
below the Oaic of Fui^alofy. The icason Dante aligns lu the 
uund given forth by the forest merits con side rat inn, u showing 
that tlw Poet was acquainted i>ith the reflection and concentra- 
tion of sounds through ihc medium of trees; effects Ihst sre pro- 
duced by trc«s according as ihcy arc more or less dcoMrly packed 
together, and accordini; as by such dense packing ihcy form, a* 
It were, walls from which M>und is reflected and re vei berates. If 
Dante was an expert in OpUcs, he was not far behind in AcouMica. 

Snto xxvrti. Readings on the Purgalorto. 


are inhabited by the human race, and there deposits in 
the different climaten the seeds appropriate to them. 
and plants ami trees grow, of which mankind never 
sowed the seed. If men only knew these phenomena, 
they need not wonder when they sec the jjro^ih of new 
plants, with the seed of which ihey are unacquainted. 
The whole ol the Terrestrial Paradise is tilled with 
seed of every kind, and Rives forth stich fruits and 
flowers, as have not their parallel in the Hemisphere 
inhabited by Man. 

K la perot»!ui pmnta* tjtnio puote, 

Che delta hu.i virtutc I' aria impfcKnft, ttO 

E quclla pui giiando intorno scotc : 
E r aitra Icnrait sccondg ch' S dcgnn 

Per sk e per sue ci«l, concejii; e fictlat 

Di div-trsc virtA divcrec legna* 

* piaHta : Benvenuto thinks that by ^jaiifd in meant the forest. 
Tommafiio says: "pMtilj, SingoUrc per pluralc." I luvc trans- 
laietl it "every tree." 

* /' allra ttrra : Some Commentators explain this "ihc rest of 
the earth," other* "the other tcrrcitriiil hcmiiphccc," namely, 
that inhabited by Man. Whichever intcrprctatinn be prcrcrred, 
the meaning it the >>anic, nttmcly, that the cerniinfittvc proper- 
licit nf the Tcrreitrial ParaiiiKc are whirled round by the fictititiUK 
wind to those parts of the earth inhabited by Man, and. being 
scattered on the noil there, upontancouiily tnlie foat. A few un- 
important Cfilittt follnw the Santa Crcicc in reading /' allu lerrii, 
which would make Matclda continue to speak of the Tciicstrial 
Paradise. Out the reading r allra is to nearly universal, that the 
other it not worthy ii( mention. 

IfifJia: Figliart properly »i);nificti " to brini; forth" bh applied 
to human generation, l>ut the Crmi Ditionario unys ii i!> mmctimci 
applied to vegetative Kcncration, and bcsidet the prcunt pab&agc 
quotes from Tatisi). Le Sfltt Gtomtili del A/uaifn crtato. Kircnic, 


" L' aridu >ena indi »' impingua 
Delia terra, chc poi eonccpc c figlia 
Tantc ni vaiie c ai legKiadre fiirmc 
Di piantc, d' animal, di lion c d' criw." 

Od the present t«I Buli eommcnts: "Piglis, dot produce fuori 

lo (rutto, come hgliualo." 

tsenvenutu says that tlie 
Nature constantly; for 
prct^natL' the surrouncllnj 
some winds can convey 
country fit to conceive su 
taneously shoots forth, ai 
carry the seed of the tre 
just as we may find at t; 
growing in the forest, or 

Benvenuto remarks that 
enon, they marvel if they 
when once they know the 
and therefore Dante need nc 
knows that the movement of 
of the trees. 

Not! parrebbe di U poi i 
Udito questo, quani 
Senza seme pakse ^ 

E saper d^j chc la camp 

*Seusa umepaUse: "Noi ve; 
[take root\ in luncii; a - 

,anto xxvtii. Readings on ihf Purgatorin. 459 

Ovc tu Bci, d' ogni ncmcitMi* i pi«n>, 

E frutlD hH in »t chc di \i non li fichiantii.'f tto 

It should not then on earth appear a raaivcl, IT 
this be undcTEtPod, when cit any time some pinnt 
or other takes root there without <iiiy apparent seed. 
And thou most know that the holy country where- 
in thou art, is full of every Heed, and has within 
itself fruit such aa is never leathered yonder on 

Diviiitm IV, — Matelda. having enlightened Dante as 
to the origin of the wind in the Terrestrial Paradise, 
proceeds to tell him about the water. 

L' acqua che vedi non »urgc dj vena J 

'saiKiaa: Scartaiczini >ayi it in evident that bv imenxa 
Dante meant trees, since thej" ht\c fruit o in s? and tdc fruit i« 
gathered [ri tchianlaj frnrn the tree, and not from liie seed. Cum- 
plrc Ariosto, Orl. Fur. xaxiv. *t. 60: - 

'' De' (rutli a lui del paradUo ditro, 
Di tal sapor ch' a »uo giudicio unia 
Scum non »nn« i due primi parenli, 
Se per quci fur 9i poco \ibbidicnli." 
t non li irAidifa ; Nut only fruits known on earth ean be 
gathered there, but alua those unknown. Rome ihink ihut Ma- 
telda means to allude tu the Tree of Life, which remained in Para- 
dise, and was not allowed to bear fruit on Earth ax long as Death 
existed there. Compare Purg. x», 43-45 :— 
" I<i lui mdicc della maU pinnla, 

Che la terra cri§tiana luMa aduKnia 
Si chc buon frutto rado >e ne schianta." 
I Hon suri^e (fi itirn, etc.: Scartaz^ini speaking of Dante's 
seeond doubt, namelyj as In how there could be water in the 
Trireslrial Paradise without rain, sayit thai the solution uf il id 
to be founil in GVii^n't ii, 5, 6: " The Lord Ciod hud nut cauiicd it 
to rain upon the varih, and there was not a man to till the ground. 
But there went up a mint from the earth, and watered the whole 
face of the emund." Of iyjiji the Graw DitiVjw.irm, S 7. ws: 
'^Canatttlo imturaU totttraittt/ f'trmi icorn Faci/ua." Compare Air. 

"Quaai torrcnte ch' alta vcnA prcinc." 
Compare Buccaccio. iktam, Oiom. iii, Proemio : " Nel mctio del 
qiial pratu era una loote . . . non lo se da natural vena a da 

460 Reading on the Purgatorio. Canto xxvil 

Che rialori vapor clic gici conr«rt«t* 
Come fiutne ch' acquista « p«rde leita ;t 
Ma cacc A\ (unluna &alda c ctns, 

ClicUnIo dal volcr ili l>io riprcndc, 
^uMnt' cIIk vcrtA da due pMli nperta. 

The Wftter which thou itccst welU not up from a spring 
that is restored !>}- vapour which tlie froai condenses, 
like a river thai now gains, now loses itn vigour : but 
gushes forth from » source both sure and unfailini;, 
which receives back attain, by the will of God, m» 
much us it pours away when divided into two sireamA 

Maiclda then describes how the two di^'crging streams,^ 
I-cthc and Kunoc, have different names, and diffcicnt 
opci^lions, which tend however to one and the same 

Da quc»la parte cun ^ irtii (ItMcndc, 

Che loglic altnii incinoria del pcccata ; 
Dnll' allra, A' ttpti ben (alto la rende. 

(juinci l.ct^tj^'^^ ^I'l' >'"" ''^> 

BTlilicioan . . . (pltava tania acqua e m\ alia verao-U ciclo . .| 
(he di mcno avna macinain un mulino." 

*(.'Af rutari vapar the gitt convarta: Compare Purg. 
31-iS: — 

"dat principio sua (dov' i si presno 
I,' alficnro monlc, ond* i irnncn Peloro, 
Che in pochi lochi pAs^a ultra quel Hgno) 
Infin lit 'vc u rcnde per riMuni 

Di quel che il cicl della marina afciuga/'elc. 
Searift^mi liiys that tl.inle is alluilinit tu tlic Uct cxpreMed by 
him in Pirg, v. 109-111, tKul water i>> j^ecieiatcil bj' ctild ; — 
" l]«n %»i coinc ncU' acre si iacc<>);lie 

Qiicir umidn vapor chi- in acq^ua riedc. 
1 iMttu chc Kale dove il frcddo il cuK^e." 
fjiumt ik' iuiiuitta t J^*ir Umi : " Ltim, § 4, B detlo di Aume_ 
|ier metaf(l^^ Uiintc, rurg. KSviii, ti^, cioi, Kccarido chc i gunf 
o povcro d' acquc " (G*""" iJi:i<"n»'w), 

;^)irtiwi IMf : On the \S'cMcrn aide u( the Divine I'uml. 
vhich side Dante had entered it, irai Ljfhf, (he Kiver of Oblivkir ._ 
which in ancient mytholoiO' was HumMCcd to flow through tbe~ 

Canto xxvnt. Readings on tiu Purgatorio. ^Sl 

Biino^ %i chiama, e nan aclnprit. 
He quinci c quindi pria non i guiUlo. 
Alotr altri napuri csto* i At sopra; 

On this side (the led) it descends with power to take 
away from one the memory of sin ; on the other (the 
right side) it restores thiit of ever>- good deed. Here 
on this side Lethe, so, upon the other side it m exiled 
Eunoe, and it is not operative {i.e. does not produce 
its benelicial efiecl), if it be not tasted first on this 
side and then on that. The savour of this water (of 
Eunoe) surpasses all others. 

Observe, says Benvenuto, that two thingfi are neces- 
sary to the man who aims at happiness; in the lirBt 
place, forgelfulness of what is evil, so thai it may no 
longer come into his mind to sin: and secondly, re- 
membrance of what h good, which will not allow him 
to sin any more. 

It is not only necessary to forget past sins and ab- 
stain from present ones, but also is it necessary to 
work active good. 

Both Benvenuto and But! begin a new paragraph 
here in the middle of the lersina, and Buti says it is a 
digression. Benvenuto remarks that Matelda now adds 


Enrernal ReRioni, but, according to Dante. iUsAetl forth from the 
summit of the Mountain of Puriiatory> lowed through the 
Tetrestrial Paradise, and thence, falling to the foot of the 
mountain, di^iappeared through the cavity from whence Dante 
and Virgil emerged into the Southern Hemisphere — see /«/. 
xx«iv, 130; and Puwg. i, 40. Through this cavity it entered the 
subterranean watercourse, and Bowed down to the centre of the 
Earth. The word LHht was derived from the OreeV, and signifies 
the oblivion of Bvil, which must precede the knowledge or 
remembrance of Good, which is implied by the river Hunoc. 

■ *eito: ThisrrferK toihe sa^'our of the waterof P.unoe. Com- 

I pare Purg. xxxtii, 13S, where Dante describes his delight on 

I drinking of it :— 

I " Lo dolcc ber che mai non m' aviia sajio." 


Kcaitings on the Purgatorio. 

a most powerful conclusion to show tlie happincHs 
this enchanting I cuion. And to catch IMnte's attention 
she pn>mises htm that this conclusion is spoken by her 
as a special mark of favour (o himself. 

Ed awcgna ch' aoshI po«u cucr •■ctm 
I,a setc tua,* perch' io piu non ti wopra, 155 

Darotti un corullariu f ancor per grazia, 
Ni credo che il tnio dir (i iin men earn. 
Se oltrc promiMion ( tcco si spasU. 

And althou(;h it may bt that thy thirst ffor know> 
ledge) is sutTiciently staked without my making further 
revelations to thee, I wilt in addition ^ivc thee a 
corollary in token of bvnur, nor do I think that tny 
speech wilt be less prized by thee, if it extendi beyond 
my promise to Ihcc. 

In II. 83, 84, Matclda, addressing herself specially t 
Dante, told him that she had come ready to answer 
everyone of his questions, so far as was sufficient for 
him. She has done so. and she now tells him that,^y 
to clinch and conBrm what she has said in answer ta^| 
his questions, will volunteer a further explanation," 
about which he has not asked her. 

In explaining her corollary, she remajks how the 

*Lm utt fiM : Compare F»^. xxi, i :— 

" La Ktc natural che mai non saiU," etc. 

t tofotlario : Cempare Bo^thius. Phil. Cofiuil. lib. iii. Pros. 1, ' 
"Suptf h»c, iniuH, igilur, veluti gcometne >olent. demonitratis 
pr«po»itis, aliquid inferre. quw r«pi>VfMra ip»i vo<anl. ita r^Aj 
<)UO<)ue tibi veluti coroUariuin dabo. . . . Bt putchniin, inquam.] 
hoc, aujur ptciioiium. wvc irt^fMi, sivecorollanuTH vocan m-vn '1 
Bcnvcnutn tayslhal ■ lonllario ii the final conciuuoo. ' 
pven attcr olhcr> a* the conctuuon of cooclu5ion«. I t ! 

Ik derived from cvrotlat a liltte crown, which, In diiiputatlonai was 
fiveo to th« victor. 

* altre ^roMuikm : Malelila had only promiied Dante to explain 
to him the origin of ihe wind and the watet m the Tcrreitrial 

Canto xxviii. Readings oh tki Purgatorio. 




ancient poets may possibly. In dcscribinfi the Golden 
Age, have imaj;inetl this blessed spol. in which, says 
8carta/;:tni, the Oulden Age tually did exist fur man. 
Here he was placed in a state of innocence, and sur- 
rounded by all the beauties and delights of Nature. 

QuclU chc anticiimcntc |»>eUto 

V rtft d«ir oro * e suo sUto felice, 140 

KorBc in J'arnaito cuto loco soRnsro.* 
Qui (a innoeente V umana radicc; 1 

Qui pnmavcrk h scmprc, ed ngni frytto ; 

N'ttiare t qucKlo (ti che claitcun § dice." — 

They who in ancient limes celebrated in song the 
Golden Age and its happy state, perchance upon 
Parnassus dreamed of this spot. Kere did the 
pnrenls {tit. root) of Mankind dwell in innocence; 
here is there perpetual spring, and every fruit ; this 
(rill) is the nectar of which every one of them .ipeaks." 

Dante evidently thinks that Matelda's corullary ralher 
applies to Virgil and Statius, who, more than hinnseir, 

* Qutlti die ttnlicuHUHlt fotlan L' (td dtit oro : Ovid was the poet t/' 
who watt foremost in deicnbinK the (iolden Axe, in Milam, i, 

«9-t"a- . . . y 

f in Pttraiiio /tto Iota stfuiro : Dantello, commerling on (hia ^^ 
IMMiaKC, draws sttcntinn to ihc opening lines ttf ihc Prolagm to ' 
the Satirti at Persiua ;— 

" Ncc fante labraprolui cabilUno, yi' 

Keque in bicipiti sotnniasie PornaBso 
*r Hmwui rtidu4: Th» means Adam and Eve, the parents of 
Ihc human race. Compare Euk. xvi, x ( VutgaU) : " Radii tua ct 
gencralia tua de terra Chanaan." And Piifg. xx. 4J. quoted 
above: — 

*' to fui radicc dclla mala pianU," «f Mf . 
And Par. xv, SO, Sq, wtiere CacciaKuida, Dante's grc«t-great< 
CrandfalhcT. mjs to him: — 

"0 frundx mia, in chc lo compiacemmi 

Pure aspettando, io fui la tua radiee." 
^ ruMfMN .- Thii do«a not mean *imply everybody, but every 
one of the poets (It* antUMitau f«aan>. i/* 


Readingi oh Ike Purgatorio. Canto XXVII 

poelaroH dill' eta cUW oro. and he looks round to se 
what imprc&sion the last words have made upon the 

Ia ml vol«i diretroallora tutto 

A' mici Pocii, c vidi chc coo ribo^ 

L'dito avevan I' ultimo coatrntto : 
Poi alia bella Donna toraai il viao. 

I turned mc then right round towards my Poets, and 
notcil thttt they had heard the concluding words until 
a smile : then to the beautiful Lady 1 turned back 
my eyes. 

This is not the last time that Uante i« to see Virgil'q 
face. He looks upon it once more. See Canto xxi] 
1. 55 ti i«l- 

*con riio Vdito (tMVtm : Virgil and Statiui had heard mth 

cfatificalion. and smtlcd their apprn^a] nf (he>c In*! wntdt ni 

Malclda : '/' allimo cottrutl:, 1' ultima con^fullionc, I' ultima 

-concliioianci c I' ultime parole, chc furono ctic nuclll ' >"' ■'>({ 

ycanvcntc poctaio, si havcvano in I'arnaso sognato V aur ■ 

lU (]uale vetamcnte era tlalo in cima il monte del I'ui^M 

£nelUrmlrc Paiadiio" (Danitllol. 


Canto XXIX. Readitigs on the Pur^atorio. 




In the last Canto Dante described the beauties of 
the Terrestrial Paradise, which Matclda pointed out 
to him. He now tells how a Mystic Procession 
passes before him, which we tind is figurative of the 
whole of the books of the Old and New Testament. 

Bcnvcnuto divides the Canto into four parts. 

In the Pirsl Diviihn. from ver. i to ver. .10, Dante 
relates how Matelda moved on along the banks of 
the river Lethe, biddinK him follow her, and how 
she drew his attention to a j^rcsiX hglit thai suddenly 
&hone in the forest. 

Ill the Second Division, from ver. jji to ver. 60. he 
describes the Seven Golden Candlesticks, the stand- 
ards of the approaching Church Militant. 

In the Third Division, from ver. 6r to ver. 105, he 
describes the Glorious Army of the Church Militant 
with itii Leaders. 

Ih the Fourth Division, from ver. 106 to ver. 154, he 
tells us of the Triumphal Chatnot, of the Gryphon 
who drew it, and of those that accompanied it. 

Division I. — Matelda, having given Dante (he ex- 
planation he sought, as to the causes of the wind 




RMdingi on thi Pitrgatorie. Csnto xxix. 

and the water in this sacred region, recommences her 
singing, [n I. 8ii or the last Canto we read that she 
wa.s singing the Psatm DtUftoiU, and broke oiT to listen 
to Dante's doubts. She now resumes with another 

Cantando come donna innsmorata,*' 
Coalinii6 col fin dl sue parole ;t 
Bi«H quorum Ucla mnt pttf»ta.\ 

*Jt^'tn4iiniuimoriita : &;«rUziini says that Dante, in the dncrip- 
ti on of his meeting with Matclda, has imitated a Baltala at Ma 
f riend Guidu Cavakanti addre»se<l to k shephetdcu: — 
"In un boKchetIo tfovai paistorclla 
PiCi die lu MtcIU bclla al mio parcrc 
CapcKti avca biondclti, c ricciutclli. 

E gli occhi picn d' amor, cera rusala: 
Can Kua vciKhetta pasturava agnelll ; 
E acalta, c di rugiada cru bagnata: 
Cauttiva tomt Josh innantoratHi 
Bra adornnta i\ tutio piaccrc." 
See Rimt Anlkhe, Venezia, ijjz, p. 701 or foiti itl Prima Saola 
diUa Lingua iluliana, FircnK:, 1816, vo\. ii, pp. jSj. 1S4. 

ftclfin di iU4 paraie : Toinmaii^oint«rprclK this: " Appcna finite 
le 8UC parole,' and Oanicllo explains thai th« last words of Ualelda 
had been: — 

" Nittarc i (|uc;ilo di che ciaacun dice." 
Dante had ihereupon turned round, and had uen Vif^tl and 
StatiuB Dmilinj! approval, but Matclda went on at once with her 
tiini;ing without any intermission. One nwy perhaps be reminded 
o[ a Gonlmst between Mutclda here, at the end of her speech, 
devoutly pronouncing a blessing, and Ihc paauige at the beginning 
of fit/. x\v, where the robber Vanni Fucci concludes his speech 
with a hideous bl.isfilicmy. Dante is quite as wonderful in hi* 
conlTaitK as in his siniiles- 

X Diati quorum lerlu lunl fc((«ta .' The fgll text of this in the 
Vuigule is: Bull quorum timiua iiml inigkilatti, et quortm lata 
SvHt ftfttitii. This IB verse 1 of the Penitential faalm xxxi, which 
is one uf the Psalms for Matins in the Roman Ftreviary. In the 
Aiilhorijrcd Version (Psalm sxxii], ** Blessed ts he whose transgreS' 
Hion IS forgiven, whose sin it covered." It ina^ well follow on tg 
DtlataUi (which i» in verse j of Psalm xct in the VMigat<\ as 
rightly indicating the ^oy of which the tatter Psalm is the utter- 
ance: "Quiadelcctasti mc, Uomine, in factura tuai et in operibus 
maiiumn tuarum exsultabo." 

Canto xxnc. Reatitn^ on Ih Purgatono. 


Singing lilcc a lady in love, on the conclusion nf her 
Speech, she wxnl on with: littiti quorum tain iunt 

Matelda, who is emblematical of the doctrine of Holy 
Scriplure. enamoured of virtuous deeds, rejoices in 
the purification of Dante, amJ having said at the end 
of the preceding Canto, the words qui Ju imiocenle 
r uniana radice, she continues by singing lieati quorum 
I tecia sunt petcaia. words most appropriate to the occa- 
I sioii, as Dante is about to pass through the river that 
I lakes away the memory of sin. It is as though she 
I would say to him : " O happy thou who has been found 

■ worthy to behold this state of bIesKedne*;K." 

■ Dante now describes Matelda walking along the bank 

■ of the stream. 

£ come ninfc * chc sii civan sole 

Per le iiilviilichc ombre, disiando 
Qual di veil«r. qua) dj FugKir lo sole,t 

Allor »i inossc contra il liume,t andando 

*E (tttne tnttft, etc.: Biagioli thinks Dante's ifnaginslion was 
exalted by lome peculiarity in the beautiful Udy's mode of walk- 
inE, whicfi must certainly have had in it something godlikct and 
super iiif to the ){ait of a miirlal being. So did Petrarch descrilie 
Ihc walk of hiH Laura in part i, Mnnct 6i (or 69) ; — 
Non era I' andar suo cusu tnortalc 
Ma d' angelica forrra." 
St> in M*. i. 405, ia Ihc coddeiw-like walk of Venus diaclOBci) : — 
"Vera inccssu paioit dca." 
^QuAiMvtdtr, iia,\l di JugRtr It} ii>U : "Quelle de'monli chiama- 
vano (Ji boeti) OrtaJis. auellc dcllc sclvc DryaJei, quelle ilclle 
fontane Htimiulryaiiti, quelle dc' campi fiaytiiin. Quelle dc' monli 
vc)u;tono volcnticri il S<ile. (luelle dellc aclvc il fuKKono" 

I toHlra UfinuN : Their coiine is now due South, a« tlie>' walk, 
Matelda on one &idc of the Urcam. and Dante on the other, 
kecpinK exactly even with each other, and preserving; the saine 
diiiancc aa hcjorc, parallel and equidistant. 

GG 2 

^^M 468 Readings rut the Purgatorio, Canto incni- 

^^^^^^b So per la ed in pari <ti lei, 
^^^^^F Picciol paH^ncon picciol icKuilnrxlu. 

^^H^ And like the nymphs, thai were wont 10 roam in soli- 
^^^^H tude through the sylv»n shadts, some di-sirouB of 
^^^^^f seeing, others of avoiding the Sun, so did «hc then 
^ ntnvc on counter lo the fitiCHiii, going up along the 
^^H bank, and 1 (moved) evenly with her, following her 
^^M short paces with paces equally short. 

Rcnvcnuto remarks that the Poets, by the Nymphs or 
watcr-goddcs&cs, wished to portray the various wonder- 
ful powers of God over the w^atcrs, shown in so many 
ways; according to many authors, ihey Bcuratively 
represent wise and good men, being thus a fair type of 
Matelcia and Dante advancing with slow and dignified 
Rtcps up the course of the stream, under the shadow of 
the lofty trees. 

Dante next tells how the rill took a sudden bend, so 
that he finds himself facing the East. 

^^H Non cran ccnio Ira t i suo' patsi t i mici, 10 
^^^^^^_ Quando Ic ripe igualmentc ditf volia. 
^^^^^B Per modo ch' a Icvnntc mi rcndci.* 

^^H^^ *a UvaaU ntt rtndti: In a note in Tommasio's Commentary 
^^^^^^ntonclli observcx, that Danie, when he reached the tO[> of the 
^^^^IPWairway, had the Hn^it IsL'in^ him. Being ntf,',) rfi urtar Jeiitr,t 
^^^^^ t Jintamo, it is natura) to supposi- thai, as he penetrated inta the 
H dcptlit of the tinly fmehi, he should (um in dllTcrcnt directions. 
H He walked upntrcaiii aluiii; the bank of the Lcthc, wliiel) flowed 
H from ils source towards the West, but with many bends; (he 
H part up which he had last been walking had a bend inurards the 
H North, and Datilc hnd been therefore (bciak the South. Now a 
H sudden turn lo the left brings him back to face the East, and 
■ Antonclli adds: "Nuovo mcoo d' tndicare |;eomctncBmcnic la 
H vafiaxionc d' oricniamento d' un viaggialorc, c 1' indiimento 
H d' un corso d' acqua, ehc devetrri^are unu tuperAcic circolarc, 
^^^ acnca uiKtic tla essa. imponcndosi cvtdenlcRicntc da tal coo- 
^^^L di/ionc tm numero convenicnie di arolie e di pieraiurc ncl canale, 
^^V e un aiiMirbimcnto d' acqua per la nutrisionc dcflc piamc in m;tMl 
V misura di quelU chc viene nomminiMrata d;>tlH unrKente, giacchi 
H qui non si ammcttc la evaporazionc." That Uontc was (acing 

Canto xsix. Rea4ing% on the Purgalorh. 


Ne xncOT fu cobI nottra vi« molta, 

Quando In Donna tutta « ro« si torse,* 

Diccndo:— '■ Frate mio. guarda, cd aHtolta."— 15 

Not yet a hundred paces were there between hers 
and mire (i.t. we had not walked fifty each|, when 
both the banks took an ctjual bend, in such wise, 
thai I again faced the Kasl. Nor even thus had our 
way continued fur, when the Lady turned tomplelety 
round toward* mc, saying : " My brother, look and 

Bcnvenulo explains this tii mean that they had not yet 
walked far beyond the bend the river had taken, 

Dante now begins to describe the Church Militant, 
and points out that theologians always distinguish 
between the Church Militant, which is e%'er fighting 
against the Church'^ enemies, and the Church Tri- 
umphant, which rejoices in Heaven over the victories 
obtained. Of the Utter Dante will shortly give a 
description in the Paradtao, but he will first duly give 
an account in this pansage of the Church Militant. 
He now relates how he saw a great light approaching 
him, and at first imagined it might be a flash of lightning, 
until he perceived it was not followed by thunder. 
V.6 ccco un tuMixi f •ubilo IraKCorae 

the East when he renchcd the lop of the stairway, we know Iron) 
Canto xsvii, ijj, where Vir(;il says to him : — 
"Vctti Mi i[ lol che in frnnle tj rilu<;e .'" 
•liiMit a mt it tone: Nearly all the best authorities read la 
tlontu lulla a mt 11 Uiru. Sntne read (Juanclv la donim mia a mt si 
laru : but this docs nut HCcm nearly no good a rending »<• the firat, 
as Dsnlc h»» never elsewhere called Matelda "U Joiimi iiiii," but 
'• ta donna,'' or ''Ai MM rfpnn->." " /.^ donna mitt " could only 
refer to Itcatricc, just as in luf. v, i^i; ''Ctit !U il luu dottorc^ 
refers to Virgil and not to Ito^thius. 
fluslrp; Compare Par. xi\; 67>68:— 
" Rd ccci) intomo di chiarccjta pari 
Nasceie on luMro sopra quel the v" era." 
Seaiuzzini and TominasiD suggest lluil Dante must have had 

470 Readingi on the Purgatcrio. Canto XXDC. 

Da luttc parti per la gran forctila, 
Tal che di balcnar mi mine In forae.* 
Ma pcrchc il ba1cn»r, come vien, rcnta.f 
E quel duranda piii c piil splcndcva, 
Ncl mio pcnsar dic«a;— "Che com ^ querta?"!- 

Antl behold a bright luatre run suddenl)' throuj^h the 
Mini forest on every Hide, so brilliant that il act me 
to doubt of lightning. Uut since the lightning dis- 
appears as soon as it has come, and this kept gcltini; 
more and more brilliant, in my thought I said : 
"What thing is this? " 

Bcnvcnuto thinks Dante would hardly dare lo ask^ 
Nfatelda what it was he saw, and that he is obliged 
to confine himself to inward cogitation. 

The lijiht proceeds from the seven candlesiicl 
carried at the head of the procc&Mon. A soft $\ 

ir his mind, when h« wrote theu pasuKea, Virgil's Hnca in Xa 
IK, no, tit : — 

" Hie primuni nova lux oculis olTu]»it, et ingcns 
Vinus ab Aurora rirlum transcurrcre nimbav" 
And panic again has been imitated by two authors: Pazio dcci 
L'berti, DillamonJo, lib. i, cap. ii, tcxi. 19 : — 

'' AkIi occhi un lumc subito m' appsrvc, 
(^ual pai balcn, vhe vien per I' acre accesoL" 
And Trtiii, <^UM4rir(^i<i, lib. i, cap. v, ter*. 6:— 
"Giunn per dtmoslrar, ch clla I' udi«(e, 

Maixtf) tin lu&lro, c sin' a lor diwcsc. 
Come balcn, chc subiio veniMe." 
*mi mittimforu: Compare InJ. ^iii, 109, 110 : — 
" Coal sen va, c quivj m' ablKindnna 

Lo dolce padre, ed in titnango in (one." 
And Par. xii,40. 4I :— 

" Quando lo impcrador ehc semprc rcgna, 

Prov^ide alia mitixia eh' era in for»e," 

trrsla; Although the primar>- meaning ol restart is "to re- 

ntain." and secondarilr "to cease," I find in the Owan fhtwn- 

ari«, i 7, that, in this particular passage, il ha^ the hchbc o[ ** lo 

dtt>appear [i^inVr]; " and '■ to take \i<kM oft UUUfiumi\" 

J C*f cmiii i ijiHita ■ Compare Par. xx, Ba, 83 :^ 

" Ma dclla tiocca : ' Che cose son (lucale ? ' 

Mi piniic con la for/a del suo peso." 

Canto XXIX. Keadings on tht Purgatorio. 


strain falls on Dante's ear. The Prophets, Apostles, 
Martyrs, Confessors, Doctors, and Saints, filUd with 
the grace of the Holy Spirit, are chanting their pro- 
phecies, prayers, psalms, and orations. The scene, 
wilh its glorious accessories, so enchants Dante, that 
he cannot repress an outburst of indignation against 
Eve. on thinking of Ihe fatal effects to Man of her 

Ed una mclodjii dulcc * corrcra 

Per I'acr lumjnoso 1 ondc buon <c1a 
Mi fc' riprEndcr I' ardimcnto d' Eva,t 

Che, li dove ubbidia Ik terra e Jl ctclo, 13 

* intltxtiit doicA: Wc 8CC by 11.82-87, (hut thi« melod)' i» the 
song of the four-Jind' twenty Bldcra. Compare Par. xvr, iji- 

*'Coii dai lumi ch« II ih' apparinno 

S* accoglka per la crocc una mcluJc, 
Ch« mi ni]>iT« aenia intcnder I' inno." 

tf ariimatiff iF Ew: Scaitaizini notices (hat, whereas in thia 
[jwsUKC DanTe censures Eve, in Putn. ixxii, yj, we read that 
the Myttic Prnceaiuon ccnsureK Adam. Itui Si. Thoma* Aqai- 
HBH (.^HHiui. Theiil. part, ii, 2^, qu. cliiii, ml. 4) demon sua tea 
thni the sin of the woman was grtatcr than that nf the man. 
"Vidctur qu&d pcccatum Adc lucril gravius qu&m pcccaluin 
I'.vic. Dicitur enim 1 ad Tim. ii, i^, quM Aiiam mm nl itJuc- 
tut, mulUr aulem stdutln in fratrtiruitlioiu fitit : et sic vidclur 
quuil pccciituni mulicrts fucnt ex ignorantill, peccatum aulem 
viri ex ccrtA Kclcnlia .... Si coniudercmux condilinncrn per- 
bonic iitfiusquc, bciticet mulicris ct viri, pcccatunt viri est ^raviue, 
(luia tvAX pcrfevtiDi muliere. Sed quantttm ad ipEum gcnuM 
peccati utriusquc peccatum c^ualitur dicitur, quia ulriusque 
pcccaium fuit Kupcrbta .... Sed quantiJin ad kjtceicm supcrbic 
graviua pcccuvii niutier, tripHci ratione. Prini6 quidem qaia 
major elatio fuit miilich.i quam viri \ mulicr enim credidil rcrum 
case quod serpcnii suasit, scilicet qu(>d Ueus prohibueril iigni 
esutn. ne ad ejuM similitudincm ptrvenirent ; et its dum per cMim 
li|(ni vctiti lici *imilitudincm conscqui voluit, kupcfbia ejua ad 
hoc m: ercxit f^uod cuntf* Dei volunialtm aliqnid voluil ubtinere. 
Sed vir non crcdidit hoc esse vcrum: undc non voluit conscqui 
divinam similitudincm contra Dei volunUtem ; sed in hoc super- 
hivil, qiiod voluit cam contequi per leipaiim. Secuivd6, quia 
fnulier non Holum ipiia [>e<.cavitj aed etiam viixt pcccatum »u|;- 


Reading on the Piwgatorio. Canto xxi 

Kemmina iiola,* e pur Inti fennaii, 
Non sofTcfK dl ftlar ftotto iikun vclo ; 
Solto il <iual, sc dcvola fouc »tatB( 
Avrei quelle inefTabili deli»e 
Scniitc prims, c pOi lunga fiaU.t 

And A sweet melody was botnc aloni; throiii^h the 
illumined air, whereat a nghteous indi^rnation made 
me upbraid the temerity of Eve, who in that place 
where Ivarth and Heaven were obedient (to the 
Uivinc Will), she, a woman, alone, and but newly 
formed, could not endure to remain under any veil 
{i.e. in ignorance) ; under which, if ehe had Rubmis- 
■ivcly remained, I should «ooner have tasted those 
inelTHbIc delights, and (I should have) much longer 
enjoyed them. 

Division II. — Dante now describes the approach 
the seven golden candlcfttlcks, the standards of the 
Church Militant, and supposed to typify the Seven- 
fold [loly Spirit, or, according to others, the Scveiij 
SacramcntK of the Roman Church. 

Mcnir' to tn' andava tre tanic priminc J 
Ueir ctcmo piaeer, tatto toipcM, 

Kcaait: undc peccavit et in Deum et in proximum. Trrlic. in 
buc (|uM jKccatuiti viri dirninutum c<>t c« hoc quM in |>cceii(um 
cnfiscnMt aniicabili qufldam bcncvotentift, <jud plcrumquc fil ut 
nHcndaluc IIcuh, nc homo ex amico fiat inimicus, quod cum 
facerc fion dcbuissc divine scnlcniiv juittuiexiiu!' indtcavit, lit 
AugU*tinuK dicil 'Sufer Cuh. ad. litt. iik xi, cap. ull. k mcd.X Et 
tic patcl quM peccalum mulicris fuit graviuK quitm pcccalum 

* Ftminiiui .■«'•). Andrcoli cxpUidH this by utyinf; that, being, 
alone, t)i[ only wnman, nhc could nut have the excuse of haiinj 
bc«n templed by eroulalion, or the dc»ir< to excel over otbe 

t^ifl lunga fialit: Othcut read ^i liifga fiata. If Eve had 
not ainncdj Dante would have iaj.tcd ihcHc dclitibl* from his 
birth onuardu: fnr the Terrrstrial Paradise would have re- 
mained iht abode of ihe human race. 

! Unit ^rin»i:u .- The TcrrcKtrial i'aradtM ia a (oretaitc of 
the Cvlcbiial. The bItMcdnen of thin life is a lintt-liuii of tb 



Cuito XXIX. Kradings on the pHrfjatorio. 


E disjoso* ancora « pii) lettxie. 
DIniRii a noi, Ul quale un fbco acccw 

Ci w fe' 1' iKT,+ *olto i vcrdi rami. .15 

P, il dolcc !«unn per canto era i;iA intcnn : * 

\VhiUt amid such wonderrul first-fmJtB of the Bliss of 
Eteraity I was walktu}; along, all cnrapt, and eager 
for Hlill Ktcatcr Joys, in front of us under the ^iccn 
boughs \vt saw the whole atmosphere glow jiisl like 
Hti enkindlcil fire, and the sweet Hound could now 
be (listinKuished as a chant. 

Dante, before entering upon this new and lofty theme, 
liivukes the favour and aid of the Muses, He has 
always studied to do them honour; and feels entitled 
now to ask their help. 

O oacroKanle VerRini, sc fain!,^ 

Freddi, a vieijie mai per voi tDlTenJ. 
Cagion mi tprona ch' io ntcrcc nc chiami. 

blcMcdncKH of Life Eternal. I prefer to take bmU In the svnse 
of "so great," "so wonderful." which aficr all is its primary 
kii;nification ; rather than us "ko mxny" as it i» inietpretcd 
by several Cnmmcnlntorh and TranHlHtors. 

*ilitioto: Diintv had heard frequently from Virgil thai, aa 
soon «» he reached the top of the mogntain, be »hou1d behold 
Beatrice (atre Purj,'' "■> 4^ el sc<|.;'. therefore liix luspcriM: 
may he underetood, expccling. as he docB. to see her appear ai 
anv moment. 

( Ci si /r' r atr : Hi. " The air made itself to us ' (<i) iV •■ we 
perceived the air," etc. 

J il doke iuvn per mnlo era giu inUw : " Vult diccrc quod 
propter propinquitatem apparuit Ulam mrlodiam eute canian- 
tium. Hi nnla quod bene aiksimiUt itiLim splcndorem tuni, quia 
vcniebat a Spirilu sancto. qui ubiquc fif;uratur in if;nL' " iBi-n- 
"Vcni LTcatorspiritua, Quidiceria Paraclilus, 

Uentestuotum vinila, AhixMmi Donum Dei, 

Imple superns gratia Ponii vivus, igniii. caritan 

Quae tu creasli peclora. Hi ^ititalis unetin " ; etc. 

lliymHui in Jit PtitlftmHi.i 

^it fami, etc.: In i-'ilippo Vtllani'n I'lta Itanlit the foUowing 
paKUiK^ nccuni: "Tanl') pernosrcndae poesis anwre Aa|!rat'i(. 
Ut dicft (ioclc>que ml aliud LO(;ilarcl." In ('iuii-ii-t>i, Ir. iii. c. t, II. 



Readiugs mi the Purgatorio. Canto 

Or convicn ch' Bticoni * per mc vcrsi, 
Ed Urania f m' aiuli eoI *m> coro, 
Forti coac a pcnsar mcllcrc in vcni. 

O moBt holy Virgins, if for you I have ever codur 
hunger, cold, or vigils, the occnston tf^ura me t>n to 
claim my reward for them from you. Now must 
Helicon pour forth (its waters) for me. and Uiania 
with her choir aid me to put into verse things hard l 
10 think out. I 

In the next fifteen lines, from v. 43 to v. 57, Dant< 
explains what it was that cau;>cd the light to shine fortll 
so brilliantly, and what were the voices that he 


16-10, Dante writes himsGlf, "O quanic tiotii futono, cbc gli ocdl 
dcir aUre perxone chtuti dormencila m potAVino, che li mtei nc( 
I'abitaoolodc-lmioninorcfisanicntcmiravanA." See alio Boccaceit 
( Vila di Danlt) : " Hon curando ni calilo, ni frcddo, ai vigilie, nH 
digiuni, ni niuno allro corporvilc di^iRio, can asiiiduo stndK 
divcnnc a conmccrc dclla divina c.i&cn^ia c dcllc alirc acparatt 
intclligenzc qucllo chr per nmano InKCKOo qui kc ne pufi canii 
prendere." ' 

*Elk«»a : Helicon, a mountain, or lathcr a mouniatn rancc, \i 
BtEotia, «»» cclcbrati-d in ancient (ircicc as ihc abode of lh4 
Muses. >ho wcTc hence called Ilcliconiadcs. On iu s^lnpcn wcrt 
the (amnui fountains or Aganippe and HippoctcM, whose waten 
were siippOAcd lo Kt^e poetic in^piialion. I>antc name* Hclic«( 
hero almoiit aa if it were a fountain, but he mutt be underetcK^ 
ms cnttcaling Helittm, the mountain, to be liberal to hiin of tht 
fountoinn that Ukc Ihcir snurcc in it. Compare the line <il Vu^ ~ 
Ain. vii, 641; and repeated in iHti. x. 163: — 

" Panditc nunc Helicona, dcie, esntusque moveie." 
Compare alui the invocation to (he Muses with thai at the 
ning of the Furgalvuf, i, 7, 8, and t-f. ii, 7. 

t Unuiti, the MuBC of Atitronomy or lliings celestial, is reprq 
Bcntod as crowned with stats and rnbed in aiure. Compan 
Milton, Par. J^tt. vii, t. 

t Scaria</ini eiplainn that Danic'a viiion of the Mystic Prq 
ccMion in the Terxcslrial I'aradiw: may be divided into tun 
prirKipal part*. Tht fint (xkhxxt, tj) »hows how the Cbutch 
as a divine imiitution, nr the ideal of the Church, comes to ncm 
the penitent tinner who iit eaincHlly seeking sahalion, and docl 
•o an the dcpoNitory uf divine myMrries and ineana of grace, h 
tkt tftoiut furt (from nxii, t^ to xniil, »} Dante iKhoIda in 

of tht 


oUa in tM 

Canto XXIX. RfitMngi on the Pur^aiorio, 473 

I'oco pii oltrc seite arbori d' oro* 

Falaava ncl |»arcre il lungo Iratio 

Del mc/zct ch* «rR ancor tra noi c loro ; 45 

Ma quandofui nl prcsMi di lor latto 

Che 1' obbielto comun, X ^^^ >' lentiu inK^nria, 

vision the viciuiludea of the Church from ilx on^in up tn ihc lim« 
of the transfer of the seat of the Papacy to Avignon, und he en- 
dca%-our« further (xxxiii, 34-78), through the mouth nf llcatiice, to 
predict the future destiny of the Church. Midway in the vi&ion 
there occurs a ^cat scene of n personal character ; namely 
Dante's final penitcnee and hi» reconciliation with Bealricc. In 
llial pnrt of the ercat vinlpn Dnnte shows what munt be done by 
the man who desires to obtain »alvation. The Church c»nic« to 
meet the sinner, seckx far him »o to spcAk, a« the vpoA Shepherd 
fur the lost sheep, galhen him into her bosom, and adminiBletB to 
hull the means oi grace ; the ninner in hi^ turn t^oM to meet the 
Church, and subiiiitb himself voluntarily to perform witittcver she 
may require from him; repentance of ains, xn%, 78; sxxi, 64; re* 
nciicralion, »xxi, gi it iui. ; practice of viauc. «jixi. 103 ctiof, 

*uttr aybim if urn ; Sevtn was a sacred number. St. Thomas 
Aquinas (^tinim. Thoil. pani i, 2'', t)ti. cii. art- j) writeit: 
" Scptcnarius numerus universitalem Bignifieot." Seven i» com* 
potted of thru, the number of the Trinilv, and four, which i« 
the number of the world. The union of thra and /uiir into Ihc 
singlf number sn'tn is a Jigure of the union of God and the world 
in K^^neral concord and harmony. Scurla^/ini thinks Uante 
certainly took the idea of the icven candlcslickt from Rrv. i, 11, 
and Htv. iv, 5; the name from the fit'it.and the M^nifieation from 
the second. The seven candlesticks signify thcrelotc the Seven- 
fold Holy Spirit. Who is Sevenfold, not for what He is in tjod. 
but ax He csiiits in the world ns an inattument of divine Kovcm- 
merit. Ati the Sevenfold Spirit of God moved upon the face uf the 
waters, aiter a fashion prcccdinj; the work of Creation, »o that 
same Spirit, in the vision of Danle, precedes the Mystic Procession 
which represents the work of Salvation. These seven canrile- 
slickn being the Sevenfold Spirit of God, uc must not taltc them, 
as many Co mmer»la tors have done, for the Seven Giftm of the Holy 
Spirit, for ^ifl and giver arc not the same thins. Dante tella g« 
that the twenty-fnuf KIdcrs followed these lights fume it tor diici. 
The writers of the Books of the Old Tnlament cannot bo said to 
have been guided by the Gifts of the Holy Spirit, but by that 
Sevenfold Spirit Itself. The Gifts of the Holy Spirit arc rather 
the «(/■■ tiiU mtntioncd in »'. 77. 

t if /adjn' ifiilio Ihl fiuiio, i.t. the intervening space between Ihc 
Poets and the unknown objects that were comini! towards ihem. 

* I' titfiiell'i comui . . . \'tm ftntta . . . alcutt iur alttf : "CthhiMo 
eDNi«iKdclBcnK>(BKondo le dottrinc ariutotelichc, £>«.1itiiN>t ii, 6>, 


Rfading% on tht Piirgalorio. Canto aaiX. 

Non pcfdca ptr dislanfa alcun «uo atlo ; 
La virlu ch' a ragion dJKorso ammanna,* 

Siccoin' elli cran cindcUbri apprcsc, 50 

E ncllc voci lie) cantatc OitmMa. 

A liltle further on, ihc wide tract of the middle space 
which vei intervened between us and them Rave a 
false illusion of there being seven golden trees: but 
when I hnd drawn so near to Ihcm (hat the common 
object which by distitncc deceives the sense of vixion 
no longer loM each individual detail; the (apprehen- 
sive) faculty, which prvparca for Kcn&on its materials 
of judgnictil, began to apprehend that they (really) 
H-ere candlesticks, and in the words of Ihc ctuuit (it 
distioguishcd) the word Hoiannah. 

i quel lanto che difTerenti co»c a* Hcn^l iu)(lopo«te posiono a\crdi 
coinunc : obbiMo partkoUn sonn Ic iicntibili qualiU proprtc di 
ciaxcuna com. Ncl ca»o di Danic f obbitHo (o vuui dirlu un%tbiU) 
comune era cio che di cotnune hRnno, vcduli a una ccrta distan/^ 
un ilhcro cd un tandelabro: oMfietto parlitolatt cranu Ic apcciAchc 
quality del candelabfo, ch' egli MolaMicamcntc dcnontin« iim. 
Pice adunquc in nnNlanKa, the quclla Himilitudinc che da lontano 
aveva incannata la sua vista, da vicino cc»i6" (Andrcoti). See 
sIm) Cc»ri, Ihitnu, vol. ii, p. 515. And Coiivivw, iv, S, IL 43-5S. 
Sec also St. Thnrn. Acjuin. Summ. Theo). par* ii, 3^, qtl. \\i, an, 
1 : " ActUii autcm habcnt speticm ex objceto." And p«r» i, a**, 
qu. xviii. art i: "Actio habct specicm ex objccto,sicut cl nwtua