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D. APPLETON & CO., 549 & 551 BROADWAY. 

Lo2n>ON: 16 Little Britain. 


i'^L ':j ■/. 7 ,/::.? ^ 





In the years 1805 and 1806, 1 puLlished tlie 
First Part of the following Translation, wiUi the 
Text of the Original. Since that period, t'\AO 
impressions of the whole of the Divina Comme- 
dia, in Italian, have made their appearance in 
this country. It is not necessary that I should 
add a third : and I am induced to hope that the 
Poem, even in the present version of it, may not 
oe without interest for the mere English reader. 

The translation of the Second and Third Parts, 
" The Purgatory" and " The Paradise," was be- 
gun long before the First, and as early as the 
year 1797 ; but, owing to many interruptions, 
not concluded till the summer before last. On 
a retrospect of the time and exertions that have 
been thus employed, I do not regard those houra 
as the least happy of my life, during which (to 
ise the eloquent language of Mr. Coleridge) 
-'my individual recollections have been sus- 
pended, and lulled to sleep amid the music of 
nobler thoughts ;" nor that study misapplied, 
which has familiarized me with one of the sub- 
liraest efforts of the human invention. 

To those who shall be at the trouble of exam- 
ining into the degree of accuracy with which 
the task has been executed, I may be allowed 
to suggest, that their judgment should not be 
formed on a comparison with any single text 


of my Author ; since, in more instances than 1 
have noticed, I have had to make my choice 
out of a variety of readings and interpretations 
presented by different editions and commenta- 

In one or two of those editions is to be fo'ind 
the title of " The Vision ;" which I have adopt- 
ed, as more conformable to the genius of oui 
language than that of " The Divine Comedy." 
I^ante himself^ I believe, termed it simply *' The 
Comedy ;" in the first place, because the style 
was of the middle kind ; and in the next, be* 
cause the story (if story it may be called) ends 

January f 1814. 

The above Advertisement was prefixed to an 
edition of the following Translation, printed in 
so small a character as to deter a numerous 
class of readers from perusing it. Among the 
few into whose hands it fell, about two years 
ago, Mr. Coleridge became one ; and I have 
both a pride and a pleasure in acknowledging 
that it has been chiefly owing to the prompt and 
strenuous exertions of that Gentleman in rec- 
ommending the book to public notice, that the 
opportunity has been afforded me of sending it 
forth in its present form. 

July, 1819. 

When a Third Edition was called for m 1831, 
my duties as an Assistant librarian in t^e Brit- 
ish Museum were such as to prevent me from 
engaging in any task that would have required 
an increase of sedentary labor. I was thus 


hindered not only from altending to thn accu- 
racy of the press, (which indeed the c&re of 
my Puhlisher rendered almost unnecessary,) hut 
from collecting and putting in order the seyeral 
corrections and additions, which I had occasion- 
ally noted with the purpose of introducing thenj 
into that edition. 

A long interval of leisure may since have 
enabled me to do more effectually what I <vas 
before compelled to leave undone. In the hope 
of rendering the Life of Dante and the Notes on 
the Poem less imperfect, I have consulted most 
of the writers by whom my Author has been 
recently illustrated. Wherever an omission or 
an error in the tianslation has been pointed out 
to me, I have done my best to supply the one 
and to correct the other ; and my obligations in 
all these instances aro acknowledged in the 
Notes. Among those who have not thought a 
few hours thrown away in noticing such orver- 
sights, it is gratifying to me to mention the 
names of Mr. Carlyle, one of the most origi 
nal thinkers of our time ; my long-experienced 
friend, Mr. Darley, one of our most genuine 
poets; and Mr. Lyell, my respected feUow- 
laborer in the mine of Dante; At an advanced 
age, I do not imagine myself capable of other- 
wise improving an attempt which, however do- 
fective, has at least the advantage of having had 
my earlier days bestowed on it. 

February t 1844 



PREFACE... .. . 9 





Hell, Canto 1-XXXIV 51 

Purgatory, Canto I— XXXHI 8SS 

Paradise, Canto I— XXXIII 406 

INHiTY ,.,.. 57, 


^da, iu the fifteenth canto of the Paradise. This 
name, Alighieri, is derived from the coat of arms, 
a wing or, on a field azure, still home by the de- 
scendants of our Poet at Verona, in the days of 
Leonardo Aretino. 

Dante was bom at Florence in May, 1265. IIis 
mother's name was Bella, but of what family is nt] 
longer known. His father' he had the misfortune 
to lose in his childliood ; but by the advice of his 
surviving relations, and with the assistance of an 
able preceptor, Brunette Latini, he applied himself 
ckisely to polite literature and other liberal studies, 
at the same time that he omitted no pursuit neces- 
sai^ for the accomplishment of a manly character, 
cind mixed with the youth of his age in all honorable 
and noble exercises. 

In the twenty-fourth year of his age, he was 
present at the memorable battle of Campaldino,' 
where he served in the foremost troop of cavalry, 
and was exposed to imminent danger. Leonardo 
Aretino refers to a letter of Dante, in which he 
described the order of that battle, and mentioned 
his having been engaged in it. The cavalry of the 
Aretini at the first onset gained so great an advan- 
tage over the Florentine horse, as to compel them 
to retreat to their body of infantry. This circum- 
stance in the event proved highly fortunate to the 
Florentines ; for their own cavalry being thus joined 
to their foot, while that of their enemies was led 
by the pursuit to a considerable distance from theirs, 
they were by these means enabled to defeat with 
ease their separate forces. In this battle, the Uber- 
ti, Lamberti, and Abati, with all the .other ex- 
oitizens of Florence who adhered to the Ghibel- 

1 Pelll describes the amis diffbrently. Memorie per la Vita 
di Dante. Opere dl Dante. Ediz. Zatta, 1758, torn. Iv. pait 
tL p. 10. The male line ended In Pietro, the sixth in descent 
fhim cor Poet, and father of Glnevra, manied in 1549 to tho 
Conte Mareantonlo Barego, of Verona. PeUi, p. 19. 

* His fkther Alighiero had been before married to Lapa, 
daughter of Chlarissimo Cialnfli ; and by her had a ion 
named Francesco, who Iei\ two daughters, and a son, whom 
he named Durante after his brother. Francesco appears to 
nave been mistaken for a son of omr Poet's. Boccaccio men- 
tions also a sister of Dante, who was married to Poggl, and 
was the mother of Andrea Foggi, Boccaccio*8 intimate. Pettt, 
7. 967. 

* 6. Villani describes tMs engagement, lib. vi>. cap. 130. 


line' Interest) were with the Aretiiii ; while thoHe 
inhabitants of Arezzo, who, owin^ to their attach- 
ment to the Guelph' party had been banished froiii 
their own city, were ranged on the side of the 
Florentines. In the following year, Dante took 
part m another engagement i^tween his country- 
men and the citizens of Pisa, from whom they took 
the castle of C^prona,' situated not far from that 

From what the Poet has told us in his Tieatise, 
entitled the Vita Nuova, we learn that he was a 
lover long before he was a soldier, and that his pas- 
sion for the Beatrice whom he has immortalized, 
commenced' when she was at the beginning and he 
near the end of his ninth year. Their first meeting 
was at a banquet in the house of Folco Portinaii, 
her father ; and the impression then made on the 
susceptible and constant heart of Dante was not 
obliterated by her death, which happened after an 
interval of nxteen years. 

But neither war, nor love, prevented Dante from 
gratifying the earnest desire which he had of know- 
ledge and mental imiHovement By Benvenuto 
da Imola, one of the earliest of his commentators, 
it is related, that he studied in his youth at the 
univeisities of Bologna and Padua, as well as in 
that of his native city, and devoted himself to the 
puiBuit of natural and moral philosophy. There ia 
reason to believe that his eagerness for the acqui- 
sition of learning, at some time of his life, led him 
as far as Paris, and even Oxford f in the former 

1 For the supposed origin of these denominations, see note 
ID Par. vi. 107. 
a Hell, zxi. 93. 

* See also the beidnnlng of the Vita Nnova. 

* Folco di Ricovero Portinarl was the founder of the hos 
pltal of S. Maria Nnova, in 1280, and of other charitable insti- 
Cations, and died in 1289, as appeared from his epitaph. PelUt 

& Giovanni Villanl, who was his contemporary, and, as 
Villiuii himself says, his neighbor in Florence, informs us, 
that ** he went to stady at Bol<^a, and then to Paris, and to 
many parts of the world," (an expression that may well in 
elude England,) ** subsequently to his banishment.'* Miitt^ 
lib. ix. cap. 135. Indeed, as we shall see, it is uncertain 
whether he might not have been more than once a student 
at Paris. 

Rut the fact of his having visited England rests rn a naa- 
«9e alluding to it in the Latin poems of Boccaccic, and oc 


of which nniveraities he is said to have taken tli€ 
degree of a Bachelor, and distinguished himseif 
in the theological disputations ; but to have been 
hindered from commencing Master, by a failure in 
his pecuniary resources. Francesco da Buti, an- 
other of his commentators in the fourteenth cen- 
tury, aiBserts' that he entered the order of the Frati. 
Minori, but laid aside the habit before he was pro- 

In his own city, domestic troubles, and yet more 
severe public calamities, awaited him. In 1291, 
he was induced, by the solicitation of his friends, 
to console hunself for the loss of Beatrice by a 
matrimonial connection with Gemma, a lady of 

the aathoiity of Giovanni da Serravalie, Bishop of Fenno, 
who, as Tiraboschi observes, though he lived at the distance 
of a century from Dante, might have known those who wcrb 
contempoRuries with him. This writer, in an inedited com 
mentary on the Commedia, written while he was attending 
the council of Constance, says of our Foet : " Anagorice di- 
lexit theologiam sacram, in qii& din stndoit tam in Ozonii.* 
in regno AngUas, qoam ParisUs in regno Francis,'* Ace. And 
again: **Dantes se in Javentute dealt omnibus artibus libe- 
laiibas, stndens eas Pados, Bononie, demum Ozoniis et 
Parisiis, nbi fecit mnltos actus mirabiles, intantum quod ab 
aliquibus dicebatnr magnus philosophus, ab aliqnibus mag 
nus Theologus, ab aliqnibus magnus poeta.** TTirdbotcht 
Stor. deUa Pot*. Ital^ vol. il. cap. iv. p. 14, as extracted from 
Tiraboschi's great work by Mathias, and edited by that gen- 
tleman. Lend. 1803. 

The bishop translated the poem itself into Latin prose, at 
the instance of Oardlnal Amedeo di Saluzzo, and of two E^- 
lish bishops, Nicholas Bubwith, of Bath, and Robert Halam 
of Sallsbtiry, who attended the same council. One copy only 
of the version and commentary is known to be preserved, 
and that is in the Vatican. I would suggest the probability 
of others existing in this country. StiiUngfleet, in the Ori- 

Sines Sacne, twice quotes passages from the Paradise, " ren- 
ered into liatin,*' (and it is Latin prose,) as that learned Irtshop 
says, ** by F. 8." Oriff. Saer., b. ii. cliap. iz. sect zviii. ^ 4, 
and chap. z. secLv. Edit. Cambridge, 1701. See notes tu 
Par. zziv. 86 and 104. This work was began in February, 
1410, and finished in the same month of the following year. 

The word "anagorice,** (into which the Italians altered 
*'anagoglce,") which occurs in the former of the above ez- 
trocts, is explained by Dante in the Convito. Open di DamU, 
torn. L p. 43. £dix« Venez. 1703 ; and more briefly by Field. 
Of the Church, b. ill. cap. 20. "■ The Anagogicall** sense is, 
**when the things litejally expressed unto us do signUlc 
•onething in the state of heaven's hapi>iness.** It was used 
Uy the Greek Fathers to sipify merely a more recondite 
sense in a text of Scripture than chat which the plain words 
ntfftied. See Origen in Routh's 9eliqnie Sacrc, vol. iv. v 


tiie noUe family of the Donati, by whom he had 
a nmnekous offipring. But the violence of hei 
temper proyed a source of the bitterest suffering to 
him ; and in that passage of the Inferno, where one 
of the characters says, 

La fiera moglie piu ch' altro, mi nnoce. 

Canto zn. 

me, my wife 

Of savage temper, more than aught beside, 
Hath to this evii brought, 

his own conjugal unhappiness must have recurred 
forcibly and painfully to his mind.' It is not im« 
probable that political animosity might have had 
some share in these dissensions; for his wife was 
a kinswoman of Corso Donati, one of the most formi- 
dable, as he was one of the most inveterate of his 

In 1300 he was chosen chief of the Priors, who 
at that time possessed the supreme authority in the 
state; his colleagues being Falmieri degli Altoviti 
and Neri di Jacopo degli Alberti. From this exalta- 
tion our poet dated the cause of all his subsequent 
misfortunes in life.' 

In order to show the occasion of Dante's exile, it 
may be necessary to enter more particularly into 
the state of parties at Florence. The city, which 
had been disturbed by many divisions between the 
Guelphs and GhibelHnes, at length remained in 
the power of the former ; but after some time these 
were again split into two factions. This perverse 
occurrence ori^ated with the inhabitants of Pis- 
toia, who, from an unhappy quarrel between two 
powerful families in that city, were all separated 
into parties known by those denominations. With 
the intention of composing their differences, the 
irincipids on each side were summoned to the city 

^ Yet M. Artand, in his "Histoire de Dante," (8vo. Paris, 
1841, p. 85,) represents Gemma as a tender, &ithful, and af- 
fectionate wife. I certainly do not find any mention of her 
unhappy temper in the early biographers. Regard for her or 
for her children might have restndned them. But in the next 
century, Landino, though commending her good qualities, 
does not scruple to assert that in this respect she was more 
than a Xanthippe. 

* Leonardo Aretino. A late biographer, on the authority 
Df Marchionne Bteiani, assigns di&rent colleagues to Dante 
in his office of Prhir. 9ee Balbo. Vita di Dante, vol. i. p. 910 
fBdis. Torin. 1839. 



of Florence ; but this meaflnire, instead cf lemedying 
the evil, only contributed to increase its virulencoj 
by commnnicating it to the citizens of Florence 
themselves. For the contending parties were so 
far from being brought to a reconciliation, that each 
contrived to gain fresh partisans among the Floren* 
tines, with whom many of them were 'closely con^ 
nected by the ties of blood and friendship ; and who 
entered into the dispute with such acrlmpny and 
eagoraess, that the whole city was soon engaged 
either on one part or the other, and even brothers 
of the same family were divided. It was not long 
before they passed, by the usual gradations, from 
contimiely to violence. The factions were now 
known by the names of the Neri and the Bianchi, 
the former generally siding with the Guelphs, or 
adherents of the papal power, the latter with the 
Ghibellines, or those who supported the authority of 
the emperor. The Neri assembled secretly in the 
church of the Holy Trinity, and determined on in- 
terceding with Pope Boniface VIII. to send Charles 
of Valois to pacify and reform the city. No sooner 
did this resolution come to the knowledge of the 
Bianchi, than, struck with- apprehension at the con- 
sequences of such a measure, they took arms, and 
repaired to the Priors; demanding of them the 
punishment of their adversaries, for having thiu 
entered into private deliberations concerning the 
state, which they represented to have been done 
with the view of expelling them from the city 
Those who had met, being alarmed in their turn, 
had also recourse to arms, and made their complaints 
to the Priors. Accusing their opponents of having 
armed themselves without any previous public dis- 
cussion ; and affirmmg that, under various pretexts, 
they had sought to drive them out of their country, 
they demanded that they might be punished as dis- 
turbers of the public tranquillity. The dread and 
danger became general, when, by the advice of 
Dante, the Priors called in the multitude to their 
protection and assistance ; and then proceeded to 
banish the principals of the two factions, who were 
these: Corso Donati,' Geri Spmi, Giachonotto de' 
Paizi, Rosso della Tosa, and others of the Nem 

> Of this remrrkable man, lee more in the Puic. xiiv 



uafty, v/ho were exiled to the Castello delle Pieve 
Ji Ptorugia; and of the Bia&ca party, who wen^ 
banished to Serrazana, Gentile and Torrinano de* 
Cerchi, Goido Cavalcanti,' Baschiera della Toea 
Baldinaccio Adimari, Naldo, son of Lottino Ghe- 
raidmi, and others. On this occasion Dante wa« 
accused of favoring the Bianchi, though he ap- 
pears to have conducted himself with impartiality ; 
and the deliberation held by the Neri fbr intro- 
ducing Charles of Valois* might, perhaps, have jus- 
tified him in treating that party with yet greater 
rigor. The suspicion against him was increased, 
when those, whom he was accused of favoring, wer^ 
soon after allowed to return from their bani^unent, 
while the sentence passed upon the other faction 
sSill remained in full force. To this Dante replied, 
that when those who had been sent to Serrazana 
were recalled, he was no longer in office ; and that 
their return had been permitted on account of the 
death of Guide Cavalcanti, which was attributed to 
the unwholesome air of that place. The partiality 
which had been shown, however, afibrded a pretext 
to the Pope' for dispatching Charles of Valois to 
Florence, by whose influence a great reverse was 
soon produced in the public aflairs ; the ex-citizens 
being restored to their place, and the whole of the 
Bianca party driven into exile. At this juncture, 
Dante was not in Florence, but at Rome, whither 
he had a short time before been sent ambassador to 
the Pope, with the o^r of a voluntary return to 
peace and amity among the citizens. His enemies 
had now an opportunity of revenge, and during his 
absence on this pacific mission, proceeded to pass au 
iniquitous decree of banishment against him and 
Pahnieri Altoviti ; and at the same time confiscated 
his possessions, which indeed had been previously 
giveu up to pillage.^ 

1 See Botes to Hell, x. 50, and Parg. zi. 96. 

* See Pnrg. xx. 69. 

> Bonifiice VIII. had before sent the Cardinal Maneo d*Ac 
i|iia>parta to Florence, with the view of supportlne his own 
adherents in that city. The cardinal is supposed to be al- 
uded to in the Paradise, xli. 115. 

< On the 27th of Janoary, 1303, he was mulcted 8000 lire, 
%nd condemned to two yean* banishment ; and in case the 
fine was not paid, his goods were to be confiscated. On thti 
10th of Maren, the same year, he was sentenced to a punish- 
ment don only to the most desperate of maletUctors. Tht? 


On heariag the tidings of his ruin, Dante in 
^tantly quitted Rome, and passed with all possible 
expedition to Sienna. Here being more fully ap« 
prized of the extent of the calamity, for which he 
could see no remedy, he came to the desperate 
resolution of joining himself to the other exiles 
His first meeting with them was at a consultation 
which they had at Gorgonza, a small castle subject 
to the jurisdiction of Arezzo, in which city it was 
finally, after a long deliberation, resolved that they 
should take up their station.^ Hither they aecord- 

decree, that Dante and his associates' in exile should be 
burned, if they fell into the hands of their enemies, was first 
discovered in 1772, by the Conte Lodovico 8avioiL See Tl 
raboschi, where the document is given at length. 

^ At Arezzo it was his fortune, In 1303, to meet with 
Dusone da Giibbia, who two years before had been expelled 
from his country as a Ghibelline, in about the twentieth year 
of his age. Busone, himself a cultivator of the Italian poetry, 
here contracted a friendship with Dante, which was after- 
wards cemented by the reception afforded him under Busone^s 
roof during a part of his eidle. He was of the ancient and 
noble fanuly of the Rafaelli of Gubblo; and to his banish- 
ment owed.the honorable offices which he held of governor 
of Arezzo in 1316 and 1317; of governor of Viterbo in the 
latter of these years ; then of captain of Pisa ; of deputy to 
the Emperor in 1327 ; and finally of Roman senator in 1337 
lie died probably about 1350. The historian of Italian litera- 
ture speaks slightly of his poetical prodnttions, consisting 
chiefly of comments on the Divina Commedia, which were 
written in terza rima. They have been published by Sig. 
Francesco Maria Rafaelli, who has collected all the informa 
tion that could be obtained respecting them. Delieia Erudi- 
tor, V. xvii. He wrote also a romance, entitled VAmaUmrof 
GeUiano, which has never been printed. Tirabo*ckh Stor 
delta Poet, lUU^ v. ii. p. 56. In Allacci's Collection, Ediz. Na- 
poll. 1661, p. 112, is a sonnet by Busone, on the death of a ladv 
and of Dante, which concludes. 

Ma i mi conforto ch* io credo che Deu 
Dante abbia posto in glorioso scanno. 

At the end of the Divina Commedia, in No. 3581 of the 
Harleian MSB in the British Museum, are four poems. The 
first, beginning, 

O vol che siete nel verace lume, 

Is attributed, as vsual, to Jacopo Dante. The second, which 

Acio cho sla piu frutto e piti diletto 
A qu ii che si dilettan di sapere 
DeU alia comedia vero inteiletio, 

and proceeds with a brief explanation of the principal parta 
(.f the poem, Is here attributed to Messer Busone d*Agobbk» 
\t is also inserted in Nos ■ 3450 and 3460 of the same Mfio. 


mg\y repaired in a numerous body, made the Count 
AleBsandro da Romena their leader, and appointed 
a council of twelve, of which number Dante wa& 
one. In the year 1304, having been joined by a 
very strong force, which was not only furnished 
them by Arezzo, but sent from Bologna and Pistoia, 
they made a sudden attack on the city of Florence, 
gained possession of one of the gates, and conquereil 
part of the territory, but were finally compelled tc 
retreat without retaining, any of the advantages they 
had acquired. 

Disappointed in this attempt to reinstate himself 
in his couciry, Dante quitted Arezzo ; and his courst) 
is,' for the most part, afterwards to be traced only 
by notices, casually dropped in his own writings, 
or discovered in documents, which either chance or 
the zeal of untiquaries may have brought to light 
From an instinnent' in the possession of the Marchesi 
Fapafavi, of Padua, it has been ascertained that, 
in 1306, he .was at that city and with that family. 
Similar proof exists of his havuig been present iu 
the following year at a congress of the Ghibellines 
and the Bianchi, held in the sacristy of the church 
belonging to the abbe}f of S. Gaudenzio in Mu- 
gello; and from a passage in the Purgatory* we 
collect, that before the expiration of 1307 he had 
found a refuge in Lunigiana, with the Marchese 

and I have had oecasion to refer to it in the notes to Pnrg. 
sxiz. 140. The third is a sonnet by Cino da Pistoia to Bu- 
8one ; and the iburth, Baseness answer. Since this note waa 
written, Biisone*8 Romance, above mentioned, has been edit- 
ed at Florence in the year 1833, by the late Doctor Nott. 

1 A late writer has attempted a recital of his wanderings. 
Fot this purpose, he assigns certain arbitrary dates to the 
eompletion of the several parts of the Divina Commedia ; and 
selecttng from each what he supposes to be reminiscences of 
{wrticalar places visited by Dante, together with allnsions to 
events then passing, contrives, by the help of some qnestiou- 
able documents, to weave oat of the whole a continued 
luuiative, which, though it may pass for current with the 
luwary reader, will not satisfy a more diligent inquirer aflei 
the trath. See Troya's Yeltro Allegorico di Dante. Flo- 
renee, 1896. 

* MiUesimo treeentesimo sexto, die vigesimo septimo men- 
ds Augosti, Padne in contrata Sancti Martini in domo Domine 
Amate Domini Fapafave, preesentibus Dantino qnondam Al- 
llgerll de Florentia et nunc stat Padae in contrata Baiictl 
LAQrentil, fce. Pelti^ p. 83. 

* Pelll, p. 8S, where the document is i^ven 
« Canto viii. 133. 


Morello or Mai cello Malaspina, vmo, though tor 
nierly a supporter^ of the opposite party, was ucm 
magnanimous enough to welcome a noble enemy in 
his misfortmie. 

The time at which he sought an asylum at Ve« 
rona, under the hospitable roof of the Signori della 
Scala, is less distinctly marked. It would seem on 
if those verses in the Paradise, where the shade of 
his ancestor declares to him, 

Lo prime tao riftigio e*I prime osteilo 
Sara la eortesia del gran Lombardc, 

Firsts refuge thou must find, first place of rest 
In the great Lombard*8 courtesy, 

should not be mterpreted too strictly : but whether 
he experienced that courtesy at a very early period 
of his banishment, or, as others have imagined, not 
till 1308, when he had quitted the Marchese Mo- 
rello, it is believed that he left Verona in disgust at 
the flippant levity of that court, or at some slight 
which he conceived to have been shown him by his 
munifioent patron Can Grande, on whose liberality 
he has passed so high an encomium.* Supposing 
the latter to have been the cause of his departure, 
it must necessarily be placed at a date posterior to 
1308 ; for Can Grande, though associated with his 
amiable brother Alboino* in the government of Ve- 
rona, was then only seventeen years of age, and 
therefore incapable of giving the alleged ofirence to 
iiis guest 

The mortifications which he underwent during 
these wanderings, will be best described in his own 
language. In his Convito he speaks of his banish- 
ment, and the poverty and distress which attended 
it, in very a^cting terms. " Alas !"* said he '* had 

> Hell, zxlv. 144. MoreUo*8 wife Alagia is honorably men- 
tioned in tLo Pnif . xijc. 140. 

• Canto xvii. 68. 

> Hell, 1. 96, and Par. xvii. 75. A Latin Kinsile dedicatory 
if the Paradise to Can Grande is attributed to Dante. With 
out better proof than has been yet adduced, I cannot con- 
clude it to be genuine. See the question discussed by lYu* 
ucelli, in the Opere Minori di Dante, torn. iii. pf ii. 12<>, Fir 

* Alboino is spoken of in the Convito, p. 179, in such a 
vanner, that it is not easy to say whether a compliment 
nr a reflection is intended ; but I am inclined to think the 

A * Ahi piacciuto fosse al Dlspensature dell* Univerao,**4co 
9 11 


H pleased the DiBponser of the Univone, that the 
occasion of this excuse had never existed ; that iiei* 
ther others had committed wrong against me, nor I 
suffered unjustly; suffered, I say, the punishment 
of exile and of poverty ; since it was the pleasure 
of the citizens of that fairest and most renowned 
daughter of Rome, Florence, to cast me forth out 
of her sweet bosom, in which I had my birth and 
nourishment even to the ripeness of my age ; and 
in which, with her good will, I desire, with aU my 
heart, to rest this wearied spirit of mine, and to ter- 
minate the time allotted to me on earth. Wan- 
dering over almost every part, to which this our 
language extends, I have gone about like a mendi- 
cant; showing, against my will, the wound with 
which, fortune has smitten me, and which is ofteft 
imputed to his ill-deserving on whom it is inflicted. 
I have, mdeed, been a vessel without sail and with- 
out steerage, carried about to divers ports, and roads, 
and shores, by the dry wind that springs out of sad 
poverty ; .and have appeared before the eyes of 
many, who, perhaps, from some report that had 
reached them, had imagined me of a different form ; 
in whose sight not only my person was disparaged, 
but every action of mine became of less value, as 
well already performed, as those which yet remained 
for me to attempt" It is no wonder that, with 
feelings like these, he was now willing to obtain by 
humiliation and entreaty, what he had before been 
unable to efiect by force. 

He addressed several supplicatory epistles, not 
only to individuals who composed the govemmentt 
but to the people at laige ; particularly one letter, 
of considerable length, which Leonardo Aretino re- 
lates to have begun with this expostulation * " Fo- 
pule mi, quid feci tibi 1" 

While he anxiously waited the result of thew 
endeavors to obtain his pardon, a different com- 
plexion was given to the face of public affairs by 
the exaltation of Henry of Luxemburgh' to the 
imperial throne ; and it was generally expected 
that the most unportant political changes would 
follow, on the arrival of the new sovereign in Italy. 
Another prospect, more suitable to the temper o( 
Dante, now disclosed itself to his hopes: he oiioe 

> Par. xviL 80, and sxx. 141 

20 LIFE OF 1) J ^TE. 

more aBsamed a lofty ton& of defiance ; and, sm it 
should seem, without much regard eHhiir to con> 
sifitency or prudence, broke out mto bitter invec- 
tives against the rulers of Florence, threatening 
them with merited vengeance from the power of 
the Emperor, which he declared that they had no 
adequate means of opposing. He now decidedly 
relinquished the party df the Guelphs, which haid 
been espoused by his ancestors, and under whosf^ 
banners he had served in the eariier part of \os 
life on the plains of Campaldino; and attached 
himself to the cause of their opponentsj the GhibeU 
lines. Reverence for his country, says one of hiii 
biographeis,^ prevailed on him to absent himself 
from the hostile army, when Henry of Luxem- 
burgh ' encamped before the gates of Flosence^ 
but it is difficult to give him credit for being now 
much influenced by a principle which had not for- 
merly been sufficient to restrain him from similar 
violence. It is probable that he was actuated by 
some desure, however weak, of preserving appear 
ances ; for of his personal courage no question can 
be made. Dante was fated to disappointment 
The Emperor's campaign ended in nothing ; the 
Emperor hhnself died the following summer, (in 
1313,) at Buonconvento ; and, with him, all hopes 
of regaining his native city expired in the breast 
of the unhappy exile. Several of his biographers' 
affirm that he now made a second journey to Paris, 
where Boccaccio adds that he held a public dis- 
putation' on various questions of theology. To 
what other places* he might have roamed during 
his banishment, is very uncertain. We are told 
that he was in Casentino, with the Conte Guide 

^ Leonardo Aietino. 

s Benvenuto da Imola, Filippo Villanl, and Boccaccio 

* Another public philosophical disputation at Verona, m 
laao, published at Venice In 1508, seems to be regarded by 
Tiraboschi with some suspicion of Its authenticity. It Is en* 
Utled, ** Q,uie8tio florulenta et perutills da duobus elementlfl 
aquae et terra tractans, nuper reperta, qu» olim Mantua 
anspicata, Verona vera dlspntata et declsa, ac manu yroprift 
•orlpta a Dante Florentino Foetft clarlssimo, que dlUgenter et 
aceurate correcta fait per Rev. Magistrum Joan. Benedic- 
tnm Moncettimi de Castlllone Aretmo Begentem Patavlnum 
Ordinis Eremltarum Divi AugustLal, sacraque T^eologia 
Doctorem excellentiaslmiim.*' 

* Vellutell* says that he waa also in Genuany. Tiia de! 

LIFE OF DAN1£. 21 

Saivaticoi At one time; and, at another^ ia the 
mountains near Urbino, with the Sifrnori della Fag- 
giola. At the monastery of Santa Croce di Fonte 
Avellana, a wild and solitary retreat in the territory 
of Gubbio, was shown a chamber in which, as 4 
Latin inscription* declared, it was believed that be 
hac* composed no small portion of his divine work. 
A tower,' belonging to the Conti Falcacci, in Gub- 
bio, claims for itseU a similar honor. In the castle 
of ColmoUaro, near the river Saonda, and about 
fliz miles from the same city, he was courteously 
entertained by Busone da Gubbio,^ whom he had 
formerly met at Arezzo. There are some traces 

1 He was grandson to the valiant Gnidoeaerra Pitft, p 
•5. SeeH.xvi.38. 

* Hocce cabicnlam hospes 

In quo Dantes Allgherins habitasse 

In eoqne non minimmn preclari ac 

Pene divini operis partem com- 

posulsse dicitur nndlqne foUscens 

Ac tantom non solo eqnatum 

PhiUppns Rodulphins 
Lanrentii Nicolai Cardlnalls 
Amplissimi Fratiis Filias snmmas 
Collegii Pneses pro eximia erga 
Civem snom pietate refici hancqne 
nilos effigiem ad tanti viri memo- 
riam revocandam Antonio Petreio 
Canon. Floren. procnrante 
Collocari mandavit 
Kal. Mi^. M.D.L.Vn. Pdli, p. 9b 

> In this is inscribed, 

Hie mansit Dantes 
Aieghierius Poeta 
£t earmina scripsit. Pellif p. 97. 

* The following sonnet, said to be addressed to him ay 
Dante, was published in the Deiitias Eruditonun, and Is lu 
tLTted in the Zatta edition of our Poet's Works, toni.iv. pari 
J. p. 964, in wliich alone I have seen it : 

To, che stampi lo colle ombroso e fresco, 

Ch' ^ CO lo ¥^nme, che non e torrente, 

Line! molle lo chiama qnella gcnte 

In nome Italiano e non Tedesco : 
Ponti, sera e mattin, contento al desco, 

Perchd del car flglinol vedi presente 

El fmtto che sperassi, e si repente 

S* avaccia nello stil Greco e Francescn 
Pnehd clma d'ingegno non s'astalla 

In qnella Italia di dolor ostello, 

Di cni si speri gi& cotanto Iratto ; 
Gavazsl par el prime Raffiiello, 

Che tra dottl vedrallo esser veduto, 

OcNDie sopr* acqpi si sostien 1% galla 

22 UFE or 1»ANTE. 

of hiB having^ made a temporary abode Bt Udine 
ajid particularly of his having been in the Friul* 
with Pagano della Torre, the patriarch of Aquileia, 
at the castle of Tolmmo, where he is also said to 
have employed himself on the Divina Commedia 
and where a rock was pointed out that was called 
the seat of Dante.* What is known with greatei 
certainty is, that he at last found a refuge at Ra* 
Fenna, with Guide Novello da Polenta ;' a splendid 
protector of learning ; himself a poet ; and the kins- 
man of that unfortunate Francesca,' whose story had 
been told by Dante with such unrivalled pathos. 


Thou, who where Linci sends his stream to drench 
The valley, walk*st that fresh and shady hill 
(Soft Linci well they call the gentle rill, 
Nor smooth Italian name to German wrench) 

Evening and morning seat thee on thy bench, 
Content ; beholding fruit of knowledge fill 
So early thy son*s branches, that grow still 
Enrich'd with dews of Grecian lore and French. 

Though genius, with like hopeful fruitage hung, 
Spread not aloft in recreant Italy, 
Where grief her home, and worth has made his gmre • 

Yet may tiie elder Rafiaello sec. 
With joy, lUs ofl&inring seen the leam-d among, 
Like buoyant thing that iQoats above the wave. 

< The considerations which induced the Cavalier Vannettt 
to conclude that a part of the Commedia, and the Cansonc 

Canzon, da che convien pur, ch* io mi doglia, ' 

were written in the valley Lagarina, in the territory of 
Trento, do not appear entitled to much notice. Vannetti*8 
letter ia in the Zaita edition of Dante, torn. iv. part 11. p. 143 
There may be better ground for concluding that he was, 
sometime during his exile, with Lanteri Pamtico, a man or 
ancient and noble &mily, at the castie of Paratico, near Bres 
cia, and that he there employed himself on his poems. The 
proof of this rests upon a communication m0e by the Abate 
VLodella to Dionlsi, of an extract from a chronicle remaining 
At Brescia. See Gancellieri. Osservazioni intomo alia ques- 
tione sopra Poriginalitft della Divina Commedia, &c. Roma, 
1814, p. 125. 

a See Hell, xxvii. 38. 

* Hell, V. 113, and note. Former biographers of Dante have 
represented Guide, his last patron, as the father of Francesca 
Troya asserts that he was her nephew. See his Veltro Alle- 
gorico di Dante. Ed. Florence, 18S6, p. 176. It is to be re- 

KBtled that, in this Instance, as in others, he gives no an< 
ority fot his assertion. He is, however, followed by Balbo, 
Vitadi Dante, Torino, 1839, v. il. p. 315; and Artand, Hl» 
«>ire de Dante, Paris, 1841, p. 470. . 

LIFE OF DAIfn; 23 

It would appear from one of his Jl^»Bi\e9t that 
iboat the year 1316 he had the option giyeii him o{ 
retaining to Florence, on the ignominious terms of 
paying a fine, and of making a public avowal of hia 
o^nce. It may, perhaps, be- in reference to this 
offer, which, for the same reason that Socrates re- 
fused to save his life on similar conditions, he indig- 
nantly rejected, that he promises himself he sh^l 
one day return " in other goise," 

and itnnding up 
At his baptismal font, shall claim the wreath 
Dae to the poet's temples. Purg, zxv. 

Such, mdeed, was the glory which his compositions 
m his native tongue had now gained him, that he 
declares, in the treatise De Vulgari Eloquentia,* it 
had in some measure reconciled him even to his ban- 

In the service of his last patron, in whom he 
seems to have met with a more congenial mind 
than in any of the former, his talents were grate- 
fully exerted, and his affections interested but too 
deeply ; for having been sent by Guide on an em- 
bassy to the Venetians, and not being able even to 
obtain an audience, on account of the rancorous 
animosity with which they regarded that prince, 
Dante returned to Ravenna so overwhelmed with 
disappointment and grief, that he was seized by an 
illness which tenninated fatally, either in July or 
September, 1321.' Guide testified his sorrow and 
respect by the smnptuousness of his obsequies, and 
by his intention to erect a monument, which he did 
not live to complete. His countrymen showed, too 
late, that they knew the value of what they had 
lost At the beginning of the next century, their 
posterity marked their regret by entreating that the 
mortal remains of theur Ulustrious citizen might be 
restored to thein, and deposited among the tombs of 
their fathers. But the people of Ravenna were un« 

> Qnantmn vero snos famlliares gloriosos eiiiciat, nos ipd 
oovimos, qui hujus dnlcedioe glnris nostrom exilinm postezi' 
Samos. Lib. i. cap. 17. 

^filippo yiliam; Domenico di Bandino d'Arezso; and 
Giov. Villapi, Hist. lib. Ix. cap. 135. The last writer, whose 
authority is perhaps the best on this point, in the G\wxtL edi* 
tion of 1559, mentions Jnly as the numth in which he died; 
bdt there is a MS. of VUlani's history, it is said, in the library 
of St M axlr, at Venice, in which hia death is placed in Sep 


willing to part with the sad and honoralle memorial 
of their own hospitality. No better success attended 
the subsequent negotiations of the Florentines for 
the same purpose, though renewed under the aui^i- 
ces of Leo X., and conducted through the powerful 
mediation of Michael Angelo.^ 

The sepulchre, designed and commenced by Guidci 
da Polenta, was, in l&S, erected by Bernardo Bern* 
bo, the father of the Cardinal ; and, by him, decora* 
ted, besides other ornaments, with an effigy of the 
poet in bas-relief, the sculpture of Pietro I^mbardu, 
and with the following epitaph : 

£xigu& tumuli, Danthes, hie sorte jacebas, 

Squalenti nulU cognite pend situ. 
At nunc mannoreo subnixus conderis orcu* 

Omnibus et cultn splendidiore nites. 
Nimirum Bembus Musis incensus Etrascis 

Hoc tibi, qnem imprimis he coluere, dedit. 

A yet more magnificent memorial was raised so 

lately as the year 1780, by the Cardinal Gonzaga.^ 

His cliildren consisted of one daughter and nve 

sous, two of whom, Pietro" and Jacopo,* inherited 

» Pelll, p. IM. 

s Tiiaboachi. 

In the Literarv Journal, Feb. 16, 1804, p. 193, is the follow 
ing article :— ^' A subscription has been opened at Florence 
for erecting a monument in the cathedral there, to the mem 
ory of ^e great poet Dante. A drawing of this monument 
has been submitted to the Florentine Academy of the Fine 
Arts, and has met with universal approbation." A monn 
ment, executed by Stefano Riccl of Arezzo, has sinee been 
erected to him in the Santa Croce at Florence, which I had 
the gratification of seeing in the year 1833. 

> Pietro was also a poeU His commentary on the Divlna 
Commedia, which is in Latin, has never been published. 
Lionardo, the grandson of Pietro, came to Florenpe, with 
other young men of Verona, in the time of Leonardo Are- 
ttno, who tells us that he showed him there the house of 
Dante and of his ancestors. Vita di Dante. To Pietro, the 
son of Lionardo, Mario Filelfo addressed his life of our Poet 
The son of this Pietro, Dante Ul^ was a man of letters, and 
an elegant poet. Some of his works are preserved in collec- 
tions : he is commended by Valerianus de Infellcitate Literat 
lib. 1, and is, no doubt, the same whom Landino speaks of as 
living in his time at Ravenna, and calls *' uomo molto Iltu- 
ralo ed eloquente e degno dl tal sangue, e quale meritamer.te 
si dovrebbe rivocar nella sua antica patria e nostra repab- 
lica.*' In 1495, the Florentines took Landino*s advice, and 
Invited him liack to the city, offering to restore all they could 
if the property that had belonged to his ancestors ; but he 
would not quit Verona, where he was establbhed In moch 
opulence. VdluteUoy Vita, He afterwards experienced a sad 
reverse of fortune. He had three sons, one of whom, Fmaii 


fiome poitioa of their father's abilities, which tlioy 
employed chiefly in the pious task of illustrating his 
Divina Conimedia. The fonner of these posse^ised 
acquirements of a more profitable kind ; and obtain* 
ed considerable wecdth at Verona, where he was 
settled, by the exercise of the legal profession. He 
was honored with the friendship of Petrarch, by 
whom some verses were addressed to him' at Tre- 
vigi, in 1361. 

His daughter Beatrice^ (whom he is said to have 
named after the daughter of Folco Portinari) became 
a nun m the convent of S. Stefano deli' Uliva, at 
Ravenna ; and, among the entries of expenditure by 
the Florentine Republic, appears a present of ten 
golden florins sent to her in 1350, by the hands of 
Boccaccio, from the state. The imagination can 
picture to itself few objects more interesting, than 
the daughter of Dante, dedicated to the service of 
t^Iigion in the city where her father's ashes were de- 
posited, and receiving from his countrymen this tardy 
tribute of their reverence for his divine genius, and 
her own virtues. 

It is but justice to the wife of Dante not to omit 
what Boccaccio' relates of her ; that after the ban- 
ishment of her husband she secured some share of 
his property from the popular fury, under the name 
of her dowry; that out of this she contrived to 
BQi^rt their little family with exemplary discre- 

ceseo, made a translation of Vitnivliu, which, fa Bupposed ta 
hove porished. A better &te has befkllen an elc^nt dia- 
logue written by him, which was published, not many years 
ago, In the Anecdota Literaria, edit. Roma, (no datej vol. ii. 
p. S07. It is entitled Francisci Aligerii Dantis in. Filii Dia- 
logns Alter de Antiquitatibns Yalentinis ex Cod. MS. Mem 
hranaceo. Sec. zvi. nunc primnm in Incem editss. Fictro, 
another son of Dante III., who was also a scholar, and held 
the office of Proveditore of Verona in 1539, was the father 
of Ginevra, mentioned above in the note to p. 10. See Pelli. 
p. S8, Ate. Velltttello, in his life of the Poet, acknowledges 
itis obtigati<»s to this last Pietro for the information he had 
given him. 

* Jaeopo is mentioned by Bembo among the Rimatori, 
lib. 11. della Volg. Ling, at the beginning ; at jd some of hia 
verses are preserved in BIS. in the Vatican, and at Florence. 
He was Uvii^ in 1343, and had childieo, of whom littte is 
Icoown. The names of our Poet*8 other sons were GabrlelH 
Aligero, and Eliseo. The last two died in their childhood 
Of Qahriello, nothing certain is known. 

1 Cairn, lib. ill. ep. vU 

* Vita di Dante, p 57, ed. Flienze, 1575 



tion; and that she even removed from th«nt thi 
preflsure of poverty, by such industrious effortd as in 
her former af&uence she had never been called 
on to exert. Who does not regret, that with quaU 
ities so estimable, she wanted the sweetness of tem- 
per necessary for riveting the affections of her 
husband ? 

Dante was a man of middle stature and grave 
deportment ; of a visage rather long ; large eyes ; 
an aquiline nose ; dark complexion ; large and 

Erominent cheek-bones; black curling hair and 
eard; the under lip projecting beyond the upper. 
He mentions, in the Convito, that his sight had 
been transiently impaired by intense application to 
books.* In his dress, he studied as much plainnesd 
as was suitable with his rank and station in life ; 
and observed a strict temperance in his diet He 
was at times extremely absent and abstracted ; and 
appears to have mdulged too much a difi^xwition to 
sarcasm. At the table of Can Grande, when the 
ciHnpany was amused by the conversation and tricks 
of a buffoon, he was asked by his patron, why Can 
Grande himself, and the guests who were present, 
failed of receiving as much pleasure from the ex- 
ertion of his talents, as this man had been able to 
give them. " Because all creatures delight in their 
own resemblance," was the reply of Dante.* In 
other respects, his manners are said to have been 
dignified and polite. He was particularly careful 
not to make any approaches to flattery, a vice 
which he justly held in the utmost abhorrence. He 
spoke seldom, and in a slow voice; but what he 
said derived authority from the subtileness of his 
observations, somewhat like his own poetical heroee, 

' ** Per aflktlcaie to viao molto a studio di leggenii int&ntii 
debllltal gli spirit! visivi, che le stelle mi pareano tatte d'al- 
cnno alboro ombrate : e per liinga rtposanza in Inoghi seari, 
e fteddi, e con aflireddare lo corpo dell* occhio con aequa pan* 
rivinsi la virtik disgregata, che tomai nel prima bnono stato 
deiia vista." CnvUo, p. 106. 

s There Is here a point of resemblance (nor is It the only 
one) In the character of Milton. ** I had rather," says the 
aathor of Paradise Lost, " since the life of man Is likened to a 
scene, that all my entrances and exits might mix with snch 
persons only, whose worth erects them and their actions to a 
;$rave and tragic deportment, and not to have to do with 
clowns and vices.** ColiuUrioni Fro9§ fforktf vol. L p. aStt. 
Sdlt. London, 1753. 


FarlaTan rado con vocl soavl. 


fiSoliloin, but all their words were tonelVil sweet. 

Hell, iv 

fie was connected in habits of intimacy and friend* 
■hip with the most ingenious men of his time 
with Guido Cavalcanti ;^ with Buonaggiunta da 
Lucca f with Forese Donati ;' with Cino da 
Pistoia ;^ with Giotto,* the celebrated painter, bv 
97hose hand his likeness* was preserved ; witrr 

* See Hell, x. and notes. 

3 See Pnrg. zxlv. Yet Tiraboschl observes, that though it 
is not improbable that Buonaggiunta was the contemporary 
and friend of Dante, it cannot be considered as certain. Stor 
della Foes. Ital., torn. L p. 109, Mr. Mathias*s Edit. 

3 See Purg. xxlii. 44. 

4 Guittorino de* Sigibaldl, commonly called Oino da Pistoia, 
ffaesides the passage that will be cited in a following note 
from the De Vulg. Eloq.,) is again spoken of in the same 
treatise, lib. i. c. 17, as a great master of the vernacular dic- 
tion in his Canzoni, and classed with our Poet himself, who 
is termed " Amicus ejus ;'* and likewise in lib. ii. c. 3, where 
he is said to have written of " Love." His verses are cited 
too in other chapters. He addressed and received sonnets 
from Dante; and wrote a sonnet, ta canzone, on Dante's 
death, which is preserved in the library of St Mark, at Yen* 
ice. Tiraboschi, della Foes. Ital., v. i. p. 116, and v. ii. p. 60l 
The same honor was done to the memory of Cino by Pe 
trarch, son. 71, part i. *' Celebrated both as a lawyer and a 
poet, he is better known by the writings which he has left in 
the latter of these characters," insomuch that Tiraboschi has 
observed, that among those who {ureceded Petrarchi there is, 
perhaps, none who can be compared to him in elegance and 
sweetness. "There are many editions of his poems, the 
most c«>piou8 being that published at Yenice in 1569, by P. 
FaustinoTasso; in which, however, the Padre degli Ages- 
tinl, not without reason, suspects that the second book is by 
later hands." Tirabotchi, ihid. There has been an editimi 
by Seb. Ciamfrf, at Pisa, in 1813, &c. ; but see the remarks on 
it in Gamba*s Testl dl Lingua Ital. S94. He was interred at 
Pistoia, with this epitaph : " Cino eximio Juris interpreti Bar- 
toliqne pneceptori dignissimo populus Pistoriensis dvi sue 
l).M.feeit. Obiit anno 1336." Ouidi PanxinaHe Oaria Le- 
fum htterfretibu$y lib. it cap. xziz. Lips. 4to. 1731. A Latin 
kjtter supposed to be addressed by Dante to Cino was pub- 
lished for the first time (h>m a MS. in the Lanrentian library 
Uf M. Witte. 

* See Pnrg. xi. 

* Mr. Eastlake, in a note to Kugler'g Hand-Book •S Paini 
^ngt tramalated by a Ladyy Lond, 1843, p. 50, describes tie 
discovery and restoration, in July, 184(^ of Dante*8 portrait, 
liy Giotto, in the chapel of the Podestii at Florence, where it 
had been covered wUh whitewash or plaster. But it could 
scarcely have been concealed so soon as our distinguished 
utist supposes, since Landino speaks of it as remaining in 
his time, and Yasari says it was still to be seen when he wrote 


Oderigi da Gubbio,^ the illuminator ; and ^iih ai: 
nminent musician"— 

his Casella, whom he wooed to sing. 

Met in the milder shades of Fnigatory. MUUn'g SonneU 

BesideB Ihese, his acquaintance extended to some 
otheiB, whose names illustrate the first dawn of 
Italian literature. Lapo degli Uberti ;* Dante da 
Majano ;^ Cecco Angiolieri f Dino Frescobaldi f 

^^^■^■^—^^^ II I ■■ 11 ■» I 11 ■■ — -■--■ ^ ■■■■■■ I ■■■■■^— ^ — i ■■!■ I ■ ■■ 

1 Bee Purg. zi. 

• Ibid, canto IL 

> lApo is said to have been the son of FarinatadbgliUbenl, 
(see Hell, x.33, and Tiraboschi della Poos. Ital., v. i. p. 116,) 
and the fether of Fazio degli Uberti, author of the Dittamondoi 
a poem which is thought, in the energy of its style, to make 
some approaches to the Divina Commedia, (ibid. v. ii. p. 63,) 
though Monti passes on it a much less favorable sentence, (see 
his Proposta, v. iii. pt* 3, p. ccx. 8vo. 1834.) He is probably the 
Lapo mentioned in the sonnet to Guido Cavalcanti, begin 

Guido vorrei che tu e Lapo ed io, 

which Mr. Hayleyhas so happily translated, (see Hell, z.62;; 
and also in a passage that occurs in the De Vulg. Eloo. t. i. 
p. 116, ** Qnanquam furo CHranes 1'uirI in suo turplloqmo sint 
obtusi, nonnnllos Vnlgaris excellentlam cognovisse sentimus, 
scilicet Guidonem Lapum, et unnm alinm, Florentines, et 
C^num Pistoriensera, quem nunc indlgne postponimns, non 
indigne eooctL" ** Although almost all the Tuscans are 
maired by the baseness of their dialect, yet I perceive that 
some have known the excellence of the vernacular tongue, 
namely, Guido Lapo," (I suspect Dante here means his two 
fiiendtf Cavalcanti and UbertLy though this nas hitherto been 
taken fbrthe name of one perecv,) ** and one other,*' (who Is 
supposed to be the author himself,) ** Florentines ; and last, 
though not of least regard, Clno da Pistoia.** 

« Dante da Majano flourished about 1200. He was a Flo- 
rentine, and composed many poems in praise of a Sicilian 
lady, who, being herself a poetess, was Insensible neither to 
his verses nor his love, so that she was called the Nina of 
Dante. Pelli^. 60, and Tiraboschi, Storia della Foes. Ital., 
▼. 1. p. 137. There are several of Us sonnets addressed to 
our Poet, who declares, in his answer to one of them, that, 
although he knows not the aame of its author, he discoven 
in It tile traces of a great mind. 

• Of Cecco Angiolieri, Boccaccio relates a pleasant story in 
the Decameron, 6. 0, N. 4. He lived towards the end of the 
thirteenth century, and wrote several sonnets to Dante, which 
are in Ailacci's collection. In some of them he wears the sem- 
blance of a friend ; but in one the mask drops, and shows th&^ 
he was well disposed to be a rival. See Crescimbeni, C<Mn. a^ia 
Storia di Volg. Poes., v. 11. par. ii. Ub. 11. p. 103; PelU, p. 61. 

• Dino, son of Lambertuccio Frescobaldi. Crescimbeni (Ibid 
lib. ill. p. 190) assures us that he was not Inferior to Cino da 
PIstoia. Pel 11, p. 61. He is said to have been a Mend of 
Dante's, in whose writings I have not observed any menttoa 
of him. Boccaccit), in his Lift of Dante, calls Dlno " la (|iio* 
jpmpi flimosissimo dicltore in rima > Flnnse." 


tiiovaimi di Virgilio;' Giovanni Qiiixino;* and 
Francesco Stabiii^ who is better known by the 
appellation of Cecco d' AsooU ; most of them either 
honestly declared their sense of his superiority, or 
betrayed it by their vain endeavors to detract from 
the estimation in which he was held. 

He is said to have attained some excellence in 
che art of designing ; which may easily be believed, 
when we consider that no poet has afforded more 
lessons to the statuary and the painter,* in the va- 
riety of objects which he represents, and in the 
accuracy and spirit with which they are brought 
before the eye. Indeed, on one occasion,' he men* 
tions that he was employed in delineating the figure 
of an angel, on the firat annivezsary of Beatrice'4 
death. It is not unlikely that the seed of the Fa- 
radiso was thus cast into his mind ; and that he 
was now endeavoring to express by the pencil an 
idea of celestial beatitude, which could only be con- 

1 Giovanni di Virgilio addressed two Latin eclogues to 
Dante, which were answered in similar compositions ; and is 
said to have been his fiiend and admirer. See Boccaccio, 
Vita di Dante ; and Felii, p. 137. Dante's poetical genius 
sometimes breaks through the rudeness of s^le in his two 
Latin eclogues. 

* MvnSjoxi had seen several sonnets, addressed to Giovanni 
dairino by Dante, in a MS. preserved in the Ambrosian il- 
brary. Delia Feiletta Poesia ItaL £diz. Vene;^ 1770, torn 
!. Ub. i. c. iil. p. 9. 

* For the correction of many errors respecting this writer, 
see TIraboschi, Btor. della Lett Ital., torn. v. lib. ii. cap. ii. 

Ji 15, 6lc He was burned in 13i7. In his Acerba, a poem 
n sesta rlma, he has taken several occasions of venting his 
spleen against his great contemporary. 

* Besides fllippo Bnmelieschi, who, as Vasari tells us, 
Jiede DK^ta opera alle cose di Dante, and Michael Angelo, 
whose Last Jadgment Is probably the mightiest efSori of 
modem art, as the loss of lus sketches on the margin of the 
Divlna Ck)mmedia may be regarded as the severest loss the 
art has sustained: liesides these, Andrea Orgagna, Gio. Au 

Selico di Flesole, Luca Signoreili, Spineilo Aieuno, Glacomn 
a Pontonno, and Anrelio Lomi, have been recoonted amonii 
the many artists who have worked on the same (vigiaaL 
Bee CancelUeri, Osservationl, &c. p. 75. To these we may 
Justly pride omselves in being able to add the names of Rey- 
nolds. Fnseli, and Flazman. The ftescoes by Cornelius iq 
the Villa Massimi at Rome, lately eiecuted, entiUe the 6er> 
mans to a share in this distinction. 

A •* jb quel glorno, nel quale si compleva Tanuo, che qnos* 
ta donna em fatta delie cittadine di vita etema, io mi aedeva 
^ parte, nella qnale, ricordandomi di lei, io disegnava nno 
Angelo sopra certe tavolette, e mentre io 11 disegnava, WilaH 
eli occhi, Ate.'* Fita JVWva, p. 268. 


veyed in its full perfection throug^h the niediiini fi 

As nothing that related to such a man was 
thought unworthy of notice, one of his biographera/ 
who had seen his hand-writing, has recorded that 
it was of a long and delicate character, and re 
raarkable for neatness and accuracy. 

Dante wrote in Latin a Treatise de Monarchi&i 
and two books de Vulgari Eloquio.' In the former} 
he defends the Imperial rights against the preten- 
sions of the Pope, with arguments that are some- 
times chimericsd, and sometimes sound and c<m- 
clusive. The latter, which he left unfinished, con- 
tains not only much information concemmg the 
progress which the vernacular poetry of Italy had 
then made, but some reflections on the art itself, 
that prove him to have entertained large and philo 
sophical principles respecting it 

His Latin style, however, is generally rude and 
unclassical. It is fortunate that he did not trust to 
it, OS he once intended, for the work by which bis 
name was to be perpetuated. In the use of his 
own language he was, beyond measure, more sue* 
cessful. The prose of his Vita Nuova and his Con* 
vito, although five centuries have intervened since 
its composition, is probably, to an Italian eye, still 
devoid neither of freshness nor elegance. In the 
Vita Nuova, which he appears to have written about 
his twenty-eighth year, he gives an cuscount of his 
youthful attachment to Beatrice. It is, according 
to the taste of those tunes, somewhat mystical: yet 
there are some particulars in it which have not 
at all the air of a fiction, such as the death -ot 
Beatrice's father, Folco Portinari; her relation to 
the friend whom he esteemed next after Guido Ca- 

1 Leonardo Aretlno. A speeimea of it was believed tn 
eslst when PelU wrote, about sixty yean ago» and perhaps 
sttll exists in a MS. preserved In the archives at GnM>io, at 
tlie end of which was the sonnet to Bnaone, said to be in the 
hand-writing of Dante. Pelll, p. 51. 

s These two were Arst published In an Italian transia 
tlon, supposed to be Trissino's, and were not allowed to 
he genuine, till the Latin original was published at Paris 
In 1677. TlraboschL A copy, written in the fonrteentU 
oentory, is sc id to have been lately fimad in the public li- 
brary at Grenoble, flee FraticeUi*B Opere mlnod di DanCe, 
I9> hr. 1840, V. 3. pte 11. p. xvi. A collation of this MS. is 
fery desirable 


palcauti; his own attempt to conceal his pamon. 
by a pretended attachment to another lady; and 
the anguish he felt at the death of his mistress. 
He tells us too, that at the time of her deceasci 
he chanced to be composing a canzone in her praise, 
and that he was interrupted by that event at the 
conclusion of the firrt stanza ; a circumstance which 
ve can scarcely suppose to have been a mere hi- 

Of the poetry, with which the Vita Nuova is 
plentifully interspeised, the two scmnets that follow 
may be taken as a specimen. Near the beginning 
he relates a marvellous vision, which appeared to 
him in sleep, soon after his mistress had for the fint 
time addressed her speech to him ; and of this dream 
be thus asks for an interpretation ^« 

To every heart that feels the gentle flame, 
To whom this present saying comes in sight. 
In that to me their thoughts they may indite, 
All health ! in Love, our lord and master's name. 

Now on its way the second quarter came 
Of those twelve honrs, wherein the stars are bright, 
When Love was seen before me, in sach might. 
As to remember shakes with awe my frame. 

fihiddenly came he, seeming glad, and keeping 
My heart in hand ; and in his arms he bad 
My Lady in a folded gannmt sleeping : 

He waked her ; and that heart all baming bade 
Her feed upon, in lowly guise and sad : 
Then from my view he tamed ; and parted, weep!ng. 

To this sonnet, Guido Cavalcanti, among othen, 
returned an answer in a composition of the same 
form ; endeavoring to give a happy turn to the 
dream, by which £e mind of the Poet had been so 
deeply impressed. From the intercourse thus begun, 
when Dante was eighteen years of age, arose that 
(liendship which terminated only with the death of 

The other sonnet is one that was written after tlie 
Jeath of Beatrice >-^ 

Ah irflgrims ! ye that, haply musing, go, 
On aught save that which on yonr road ye meet. 
From utnd so distant, tell me, I entreat, 
CkHoe y«, as by your mien and looks ye show ? 

1 Beatrice's marriage to Simone de* Bardl, which Is col 
Iccted from a eiaose in her Ather's will dated January 1^ 
2SB7, would have been a tact too unsentimental to be inUo- 
^leed into the Vita Nuova, and is not, I believe, noticed ty 
any of the early biographers. 


Why mourn ye ndt, as through these gates of wu 
Ye wend along our city^s midmost street, 
Even like those who nothing seem to weet 
What chance hath fall'n, why she is grie^ng so 9 

If ye to listen but awhile would stay, 
Well knows this heart, which inly sigheth sore, 
That ye would then pass, weeping on your way. 

Oh hear : her Beatrice is no more ; 
.And words there are a man of her might say, 
Would make a stranger's eye that loss deplore. 

In the Convito,' or Banquet, which did not f^^ 
.Dw till some time after his banishment, he ex- 
plains very much at lar^e the sense of three, out 
of fourteen, of his canzoni, the remainder of which 
he had intended to open in the same manner. 
" The viands at his Banquet," he tells his readers, 
quaintly enough, " will be set out in fourteen dif- 
ferent manners; that is, will consist ci fourteen 
canzoni, the materials of which are love and virtue 
Without the present bread, they would not be free 
from some shade of obscurity, so as to be prized 
by many less for their usefulness than for their 
beauty ; but the bread will, in the form of the 
present exposition, be that light, which will bring 
forth all their colors, and display their true mean- 
ing to the view. And if the present work, which 
is named a Banquet, and I wish may prove so, bo 
handled after a more manly guise than the Vita 
Nuova, I intend not, therefore, that the formef 
should in any part derogate from the latter, but 
that the one should be a lielp to tlie other : seeing 
that it is fitting in reason for this to be fervid and 
impassioned; tbat^ temperate and manly. For it 
becomes us to act and speak otherwise at one age 
than at another; since at one age, certain man- 
ners are suitable and praiseworthy, which, at an- 
other, become disproportionate and blameable." He 
'then apologizes for speaking of himsel£ **I fear 
the di^ace,'' says he, " of hiving been subject to 
so much passion, as one, readii^ these canzoni, 
may conceive me to have been ; a disgrace, that 
18 removed by my speaking thus unreservedly of 

1 Pertlcari (Degli Scrittorl del trecento, lib. IL e. v.) speak 
Ing of the Conrito. observes that Balviati himself has tarmAd 
It the most andent and principal of all exoellent raose works 
In Itallao. On the other hand, Balbo (Vita di Dante, v. U. 
p. 80) pronounces it to be, on the whole, certainly the loweei 
among Daniels writluffs. In this diiferenoe or opinion, a 
forolguer may be permitted to Judge for hlmselt 


nyself, which shows not passion, but virtue, to 
have been the moving cause. I intend, moreover 
to set forth their true meaning, which some may 
not perceive, if I declare it not." He next pro- 
ceeds to give many reasons why his commentary 
was not written rather in Latin than in Italian ; 
for which, if no excuse be now thought necessary, 
it must be recollected that the Italian language 
was then in its infancy, and scarce supposed to 
possess dignity enough for the purposes of instruct 
tion. " The Latin," he allows, " would have ex- 
plained his canzoni better to foreigners, as to the 
Germans, the English, and others ; but then it 
must have expounded their sense, without the 
power of, at the same time, transferring their 
beauty:" and he soon after tells us, that many 
noble persons of both sexes were ignorant of the 
learned language. The best cause, however, which 
he assigns for this preference, was his natural love 
of his native tongue, and the desire he felt to exalt 
it above the Provencal, which by many was said 
to be the more beautiful and perfect language ; and 
against such of his coimtrymen as maintained so 
unpatriotic an opinion he inveighs with much 

In his expositioiii of the first canzone of the three, 
he tells his reader, that *' the Lady, of whom he 
was enamored after his first love, was the most 
beauteous and honorable daughter of the Emperor 
of the universe, to whom Pythagoras gave the name 
of Philosophy :" and he applies the same title to the 
object of his aflfections, when he is commenting on 
the other two. 

The purport of his third canzone, which is less 
mysterious, and, therefore, perhaps more likely to 
pleoso than the others, is to show that " virtue only 
is true nobility." Towards the conclusion, after 
having spoken of virtue itself, much as Pindar would 
have spoken of it, as bebig " the gift of God only ;" 

Che nilo Iddio all* anima la dona, 

he thus describes 't as acting throughout the several 
stages of life. 

L'anima, eui adoma, &c. 

The sonU that goodness like to this adorns, 
Holdeth it not eonceal'd ; 
But, ftom her flnt espooaal to the frame, 
Shows it, tiil death, reveal'd. 


Obedient, sweet, and full of seemly shftma 

She, in the primal ase, 

The person decks with beauty ; moulding it 

Fitly through every part. 

In nper manhood, temperate, firm of heart, 

With love replenishM, and with courteous vca'aic 

In loyal deeds alone she hath delight 

And, in her elder days. 

For prudent and Just largeness is she know a 

Rejoicing with herself. 

That wisdom in her staid discourse be show u. 

Then, in life's fourth division, at the last 

She weds with God again. 

Contemplating the end she shall attain ; 

And looketh back ; and biesseth the time past. 

His lyric poems, indeed, generally stand much, iu 
need of a comment to explain them ; but the diffi- 
culty arises rather from the thoughts themselves, 
than from any imperfection of the language in wliich 
those thoughts are conveyed. Yet they abound not 
only in deep moral reflections, but in touched of 
tenderness and passion. 

Some, it has been already intimated, have sup* 

posed that Beatrice was only a creature of Dante's 

imagination ; and there can be no question but that 

he has uivested her, in the Divina Commedia, with 

the attributes of an allegorical being. But who can 

doubt of her having had a real existence, when she isi 

spoken of in such a strain of passion as in these lines ? 

duel ch* ella par, quando un poco sorride, 

Non si pub dicer ne tenere a mente, 

Si i nuovo miracolo e gentile. Vita JVuovo. 

Mira che quando ride 

Passa ben di dolcezza ogni altra cosa. Crniz. xv. 

The canzone, from which the last couplet is taken, 
presents a portrait which might well supply a paintei 
with a far more exalted idea of female beauty, than 
he could form to himself from the celebrated Ode of 
Anacreon on a similar subject. After a minute de- 
scription of those parts of her form, which the gar- 
ments of a modest woman would suffer to be seen, 
he raises the whole by the superaddition of a moral 
grace and dignity, such as the Christian religioo 
alone could supply, and such as the pencil of Raphao! 
afterwards aimed to represent 

Umile vergognosa e temperate, 
£ sempre a vertu grata, 
Intra suoi be* costumi un atto regna, 
Che d' ogni riverenxa la fo degna.^ 

1 I am aware that this cansone is not ascribed to Dantei 
ui the collection of B^netti e Canzoni priuted by the Giuntl 


' Oue or two of the sonnets prove that be could at 

times condescend to sportiveness and pleasantry. 

The following to Brunette, I should conjecture to 

have been sent with his Vita Nuova, which wu^ 

iviitten the year before Brunette died. 

> Master Rmnetto, this I send, entreating, 

Ye*U eotortaia this lass of mine at Easter ; 
She does not come among yoo as a feaster 
No : she has need of reading, not of eating. 

Nor let her find yon at some merry meeting, 

Laughing amidst buffiwns and drollers, lest her 

Wise sentence should escape a noisy jester: 

She mast be wooed, and is well worth the weeting. 

If in this sort yon fail to make her ont. 

Yon have amongst yon many sapient men, 
All fiunous as was Albert of Cologne. 

I have been posed amid that learned rout. 

And if they cannot spell her right, why then 
Call Master Giano, and the deed is done. 

Another, though on a more serious subject, is yet 
remarkable for a fancifulness, such as that with 
which Chaucer, by a few spirited touches, often 
conveys to us images more striking than others have 
done by repeated and elaborate eSbtla of skill. 

Came Melancholy to my side one day. 

And said: **I must a little bide with thee :'* 
And brought along with her in company 
Sorrow and Wrath.— Quoth I to her, " Away : 

I will have none of you: make no delay." 

And, like a Greek, she gave me stout reply. 
Then, as she talked, I look'd and did espy 
Where Love was coming onward on the way. 

A garment new of cloth of black he had. 
And on his head a hat of mourning wore ; 
And he, of truth, unfeignedly was crying. 

Forthwith I ask»d : " What ails thee, caitiff lad ?" 
And he rejoinM : " Sad thought and anguish sore, 
Sweet brother mine ! our lady lies a-dying." 

For purity of diction, the Rime of our authoi 
ttre, I think, on the whole, preferred by Muratori 

IB 15S7 Monti, in his Proposta, under the word " Induare," 
Ruuarks that it is quite in the style of Fazio degli Uberti ; 
and adds, that a very rare MS. possessed by Perticari restoren 
t to that writer. On the other hand, Missirini, in a lato 
tieatise ** On the Love of Dante and on the Portrait of Bea- 
trice,** printed at Florence in 1833, makes so little doubt of its 
being genuine, that he founds on it the chief argument to 
prove an old picture in his possession to be intended for a 
representation of Beatrice. See Fraticelii's Opere Minori itl 
Dante, torn. 1. p. eeiii. I9o, Fir. 1834. 

^ FraticelU (Ibid., p. cccil. ccciii.) questlorss the genuine 
ness of this sonnet, and decides on the spuriousnoss of that 
which follows. T do not, in either instance, feel the justness 

86 hlBE OF JDANTfl 

to his Divina Commedia, though that also ia al 
lowed to be a model of the pure Tuscan idiom 
To this singular production, which has not only 
stood the test of agos, but given a tone and colox 
to the poetry of modem Europe, and even ani* 
mated the genius of Milton and of Michael Angelo, 
it would be difficult to assign its place accoiSing 
to the received rules of criticism. Some have 
tenned it an epic poem ; a:»d others, a satire : but 
it matters little by what name it is called. It suf* 
fices that the poem seizes on the heart by its two 
great holds, terror and pity ; detains the fancy by 
an accurate and lively delineation of the objects 
it represents ; and dusplays throughout such an 
originality of conception, as leaves to Homer and 
Shakspeare alone the power of challenging the 
ore -eminence or equality.' The fiction, it has 

1 Yet his pretensions to originality have not been wholly 
unquestioned. Dante, it has been supposed, was more ini* 
mediately influenced in his choice of a subject by the Vision 
of Alberico, written in barbarous Latin prose alK>at the be- 
ginning of the twelfth century. The incident, which is said 
to have given birth to this composition, is not a little mar- 
vellous. Alberico, the son of noble parents, and bom at a 
castle in the neighborhood of Aivito, in the diocese of Sora, 
in the year 1101, or soon after, when he had completed his 
ninth year, was seized with a violent fit of illness, which de- 
prived him of his senses for the space of nine days. During 
the continuance of tills trance, he had a vision, in which he 
seemed to himself to be carried away by a dove, and con- 
ducted by St Peter, in company with two angels, through 
Purgatory and Hell, to survey the torments of sinners ; the 
saint giving him Information, as they proceeded, respecting 
what he saw : after which they were transported together 
through the seven heavens, and taken up into Paradise, to 
behold the glory of the blessed. As soon as he came to him« 
self again, he was permitted to make profession of a religious 
life in the Monastery of Monte Cassino. As the account he 
gave of his vision was strangely altered in the reports that 
went abroad of it, Girardo the abbot employed one of the 
monies to take down a relation of it, dictated by the mouth 
of Alberico himself Senioretto^ who was chosen abbot in 
1J27, not contented with this narrative, although It seemed 
to have every chance of being authentic, ordered Albeilon 
to revise and correct it, which he aocordiDgly did, with the 
assistance of Pietro Dlacono, who was bis associate in the 
monastery, and a few years younger than himself; and whose 
testunony to his extreme and perpetual seLf-mortiflcatioD, 
and to a certain abstractedness of dBmeaaor, which showed 
him to converse with other thoughts than those of this lifoi 
is still on record. The time of Alberico's death is not known ; 
but it is conjectured that he leaehed to a good old age* His 
Vision, with a preface by the first editcr, Gnido? and pnee- 
ded h^ a letter from Alberico himself, is preserved in a Mfl 


been remarked,' is admirable, and the work of 
an inventive talent truly great. It comprises a 

nnmbered S57 in the archives of the monastery, which con- 
tains the works of Pietro IMacono, and which was written 
between the years 1159 and 1181. The probability of onr Po> 
el's having been indebted to it, was first remarked either by 
Giovanni Bottari in a letter inserted in the Deca di Siniboll, 
and printed at Rome in 1753 ; or, as F. Cancellieri conjectures, 
in the preceding year by Alessio Simmaco Mazzocchi. Il 
J801, eitracts from Alberioo*s Vision were laid before tiie ptil> 
lie in a quarto pamphlet, printed at Rome with the title of 
Lcttera di Eustazio Dicearcheo ad Angelio Bidicino, under 
which appellations the writer, Glnstlno di Costanzo, con- 
cealed his own name and that of his fiiend Luigi Anton. 
Sompano ; and the whole has since, in 1814, been edited in 
the same city by Francesco CancelUeri, who has added to the 
original an Italian translation. Such parts of it as bear a 
marked resemblanoe to passages in the Divina Commedia, 
will be found distributed in their proper places throughout 
the following notes. The reader will in these probably see 
enough to convince him that our author had read this singu- 
lar work, although nothing to detract from his claim to origi- 

Long before the public notice had been directed to this 
supposed imitation, Malatesta Porta, in the Dialogue entitled 
Rossi, as referred to by Fontanini in his Eloauenza Italiana, 
had suggested the probability that Dante had taken his plan 
from an ancient romance called Guerrino di Durazzo il Mes- 
chino The above-mentioned Bottari, however, adduced rea • 
sons for concluding that this book was written originally in 
Provencal, and not translated into Italian till afler the time 
of our Poet, by one Andrea di Barberino, who embellished it 
with many images, and particularly with similes, borrowed 
from the Divina Commedia. 

Mr. Warton, in one part of his History of English Poetry, 
(vol. i. 8. xviii. p. 463,) lias observed, that a poem, entitled Le 
Voye on le Songe d'Enfer, was written by Raoul de Houdane, 
about the year 1180 ; and in another part (vol. ii. s x. p. 219) 
he has attributed the origin of Dante's Poem to that " favor 
ite apologue, the Somnium Scipionis of Cicero, which, iu 
Chaucer's words, treats § 

of heaven and hell 
And vearth and touts that therein dwell." 

Aaaetaily of Fbuleg. 

It is likely that a little research might discover many other 
iioar::e8, flrom which his invention might with an equal ap- 
pearanee of truth be derived. The method of conveying in- 
stnctlon or entertainment under the form of a vision, in 
which the living should be made to converse with the dead, 
was so obvious, that It would be, perhaps, difficult to mention 
any country in which it had not been employed. It is the 
flcale of magnificence on which this conception was framed, 
and the wonderful development of it in all its parts, tha 
may justly entitle our Poet to rank among the few minds, 
to whom the power of a great creative faculty can be a9 

' Leorardo Aretino, Vita di Dnnte 


description of the heavens and heavenly bo lies ; i 
description of men, their deserts and punishments, 
of supreme happiness and utter misery, and of the 
middle state between the two extremes : nor, jier- 
haps, was there ever any one who chose a more am 
pie and fertile subject ; so as to afford scDpe for the 
expression of all his ideas, from the vast multitude of 
spirits that are introduced speaking on such different 
topics ; who are of so many different countries and 
ages, and under circumstances of fortune so striking 
and so diversified ; and who succeed, one to another^ 
with such a rapidity as never suffers the attention for 
an instant to pall. 

His solicitude, it is true, to define all his images 
in such a manner as to bring them distinctly withhi 
the circle of our vision, and to subject them to the 
power of the pencil, sometimes lenders him little 
better than grotesque, where Milton has since 
taught us to expect sublimity. B«t his faults, in 
general, were less those of the poet than of the age 
in which he lived. For his having adopted the pop- 
ular creed in all its extravagance, we have no more 
right to blame him than we should have to blame 
Homer because he made use of the heathen dei- 
ties, or Shakspeare on account of his witches and 
fairies. The supposed influence of the stars on the 
disposition of men at their nativity, was hardly sep- 
arable from the distribution which he had made 
of the glorified spirits through the heavenly bodies, 
as the abodes of bliss suited to their several endow- 
ments. And whatever philosophers may think of 
the matter, it is certainly much better, for the ends 
of poetry at least, that too much should be believed, 
rather than less, or even no more than can be proved 
to bo true. Of what he considered the cause of 
civil and religious liberty, he is on all occasions the 
zealous and fearless advocate ; and of that highei 
freedom, which is seated in the will, he was au 
assertnr equally strenuous and enlightened. The 
contemporary of Thomas Aquinas, it is not to be 
wondered if he has given his poem a tmcture of 
the scholastic theology which the writings of that 
cxtraordbary man had rendered so prevalent, and 
without which it could not perhaps have been made 
acceptable to the generality of his readers. The 
phraseology has been accused of being at times hard 
tnd uncouth; but, :f this is acknowledged, yet it 


enuiit be remembered that he gave a periaanent 
Rtamp and character to the language in which he 
wrote, and in which, before him, nothing great had 
been attempted ; that the diction is strictly vernacu- 
lar, without any debasement of foreign idiom ; thai 
his numbers have as much variety as the Italian 
tonguO) at least in that kind of metre, could supply ; 
and that, although succeeding writers may have sur- 
passed him in the lighter graces and embellishments 
of style, not one of them has equalled him in suc- 
cinctness, vivacity, and strength. 

Never did any poem rise so suddenly into notice- 
after the death of its author, or engage the public 
attention more powerfully, than the Divina Com- 
media. This cannot be attributed solely to its intrin- 
sic excellence. The freedom with which the writer 
had treated the most distinguished characters of his 
time, gave it a further and stronger hold on the cu- 
riosity of the age : many saw in it their acquaint- 
ances, kinsmen, and friends, or, what scarcely touch- 
ed them less nearly, their enemies, either consigned 
to mfamy or recorded with honor, and represented in 
another woiM as tasting 

Of heaven's sweet cup, or poisonous drug of hell ; 

so that not a page could be opened without exciting 
the strongest personal feelings in the mind of the 
reader. These sources of interest must certainly 
be taken into our account, when we consider the 
rapid diffusion of the work, and the unexampled 
pains that were taken to render it universally in- 
telligible. Not only the profound and subtile alle- 
gory which pervaded it, the mysterious style of 
prophecy which the writer occasionally assumed, 
the bold and unusual metaphors which he every- 
where employed, and the great variety of know- 
ledge he displayed ; but his hasty allusions to pass- 
uig events, and his description of persons by acci- 
dental circumstances, such as some peculiarity of 
form or feature, the place of their nativity or abode, 
some office they held, or the heraldic insignia they 
bore — all asked for the help of commentators and 
expounders, who were not long wanting to the task. 
Bendes his two sons, to whom that labor most prop- 
erty belonged, many others were found ready tc 
engage in it. Before the century had expired, 
there appeared the commentariee of Accorso do* 

40 LlFfi OF DANTK 

Boufantiiii,' a Franciscan; of Micchiuo da Me» 
zano. a canon of Ravenna ; of Fra. Riccardo, a 
Carmelite ; of Andrea, a Neapolitan ; of Gniniforte 
Bazzisio, a Bergamese ; of Fra. Paolo Albertino , 
and of several writers whose names are unknown 
and whose toils, when Pelli wrote, were concealed 
in the dust of private libraries.' About the year 
1350, Giovanni Visconti, archbishop of Milan, se* 
lected six of the most learned men in Italy, two 
divines, two philosophers, and two Florentines; 
and gave it them in charge to contribute the'r joint 
endeavors towards the compilation of an ample 
comment, a copy of which is preserved in the Lau- 
rentian library at Florence. Whose these were 
is no longer known; but Jacopo della Lana,' and 
Petrarch, are conjectured to have been among the 
number. At Florence, a public lecture was found- 
ed for the purpose of explaining a poem, that was 
at the same time the boast and the disgrace of the 
city. The decree for this institution was passed 
in 1373 ; and in that year Boccaccio, the fust of 
their writers in prose, was appointed, with an an- 
nual salary of a hundred florins, to deliver lectures 
in one of the churches, on the first of their poets 
On this occasion he wrote his comment, which ex- 
tends only to a part of the Inferno, and has been 
printed. In 1375 Boccaccio died; and among his 
successors in this honorable employment we find the 
names of Antonio Piovano in 1381, and of Filippo 
Villani in 1401. 

The example of Florence was speedily followed 
by Bologna, by Pisa, by Piacenza, and by Venice. 
Benvenuto da Imola, on whom the office of lec- 
turer devolved at Bologna, sustained it for the 

> Tiraboschi. Stor. della Pees. Ital.,Tol. ii. p. 39 ; and PelUi 

3 The Letlera di Eustazio Dicearcheo, &c., mentioned above 
p 37, contains many extracts from an early MS. of the Divhth 
Commedla, with marginal notes in Latin, preserved In th^ 
iii.-tcastery of Monte Cassino. To these extracts I shall have 
liG-inent occasion to refer. 

> PqIII, p. 119, informs ns, that the writer, who is termed 
sometimes ** the good,** sometimes the " old commentator,*' 
by those deputed to correct the Decameron, in the preface tn 
their explanatory notes, and who began his w«»rk in 1334, is 
known to be Jacopo della Lana ; and that his commentary 
was translated into I^atin by Alberigo da Rosada, Doctor of 
I<aw« at Bologna 


^ace of ten yeais. From the comment, which he 
composed for the puipoae, and which he sent abroad 
m 1379, thoee paBsoges that tend to illustrate the 
history of Italy, haye been published by Muratori. 
At Pisa, the same charge was committed to Fran- 
cesco da Buti about 1386. 

On the invention of printing, in the succeeding 
century, Dante was one of those writers who wen* 
fust and most frequently given to the press. But I 
do not mean to enter on an account of the numerous 
editions of our author, which were then, or have 
since been published ; but shall content myself with 
adding such remaijjpi as have occurred to me on 
reading the principal writers, by whose notes those 
editions have been accompanied. 

Of the four chief commentators on Dante, name- 
ly, Landino, Vellutello, Venturi, and Lombard!, the 
first ai^ars to enter most thoroughly into the mind 
of the Poet. Within little more than a century of 
the time in which Dante had lived ; himself a Flo- 
rentine, while Florence was still free, and still re- 
tained something of her ancient simplicity; the 
associate of those great men who adorned the age 
of Lorenzo de' IV&dici ; Landino* was the most 
capable of forming some estimate of the mighty 
stature of bis compatriot, who was indeed greater 
than them alL His taste for the classics, which 
were then newly revived, and had become the prin- 
cipal objects of public curiosity, as it impaired his 
relish for what has not inaptly been termed the ro- 
mantic literature, did not, it is true, improve him for 
a critic on the Divina Commedia. The adventures 
of King Arthur, by which' Dante had been de- 
lighted, appeared to Landino no better than a faba- 
lous and inelegant book.^ He is, besides, sometimes 
unnecessarily prolix ; at others, silent, where a real 

1 Antlq. ItaL v. i. The Italian comment published under 
the name of Benvennto da fmola, at Milan, in 1473, and at 
Venice in 1477, is altogether different fiom that which Mnra- 
tori has brought to light, and appears to be the same as thu 
Italian comment of Jacopo delia I<ana before mentioned. 
Bee Tiiaboschi. 

* Cristoffinro Landino was born in 1434, and died in 1504 oi 
liiOB. 8ee Bandini, Specimen Litterat. Florent. Edit Flo- 
lenoe, 1751. 

* See note to PargaCory, zivl. 133 

^ ** 1 favoloso, e non molto elegante libro del la Tdvola Ro 
tonda. Landino, in the notes to the Paradisoy ts i. 


difficulty asks for solution; and, now and theu, a 
little visionary in his interpretation. The commen- 
tary of his successor, Vellutello,* is more evenly 
diffused over the text; and although without pre- 
tensions to the higher qualities, by which Landino 
is distinguished, he is generally under the influence 
of a sober good sense, which renders him a steady 
and useful guide. Venturi,* who followed after u 
long interval of time, was too much swayed by his 
principles, vr his prejudices, as a Jesuit, to sufier 
him tc judge fairly of a Ghibelline poet ; and either 
this b.'as, or a real want of tact for the higher 
excellence of his author, or, perhaps, both these im- 
perfections together, betray him into such imperti- 
nent and injudicious sallies, as dispose us to quarrel 
with our companion, though, in the main, a very 
attentive one, generally acute and lively, and al 
times even not devoid of a better understanding for 
the merits of his master. To him, and in our own 
times, has succeeded the Padre Lombardi.' Tliis 
good Franciscan, no doubt, must have given him- 
nelf much pains to pick out and separate those ears 
of grain, which had escaped the flail of those who 
had gone before him in that labor. But his zeal 
to do something new often leads him to do some- 
thing that is not over wise ; and if on certain occa- 
sions we applaud his sagaciousness, on others we dc 
not less wonder that his ingenuity should have been 
so strangely perverted. His manner of writing is 
awkward and tedious; his attention, more than is 
necessary, directed to grammatical niceties ; and his 
attachment to one of the old editions, so excessive, 
as to render him disingenuous or partial in his repre- 
seutation of the rest. But to compensate this, he is 
a good Gliibelline; and his opposition to Venturi 
seldom fails to awaken him into a perception of 
thtfse beauties which had only exeiicised the q>leeii 
o{ the Jesuit. 

Ho who shall undertake another commentary ou 
Dante,* yet completer than any of those which have 

* Alessandro Vellatello was born in 1519. 

V Pomneo Venturi waa born in 1693, and died in ViSQ. 
' Baldassare Lombardi died January 2, 1802. See Cancel 
lerl. Osservazioni, tec. Roma, 3814, p. 112. 

* Francesco Cionacci, a noblo Florentine, projected an edi 
lion of tlie Divina Commedia in one hundred volumes, eac^. 
"ontaining a single canto, followed by all the commentarifts 


hilberto appeared, must make use of these four, but 
depend on none. To them he must add several 
others of minor note, whose diligence will neverthe* 
loss be found of some advantage, and among whom 
I can particularly distinguish Volpi. Besides this, 
many commentaries and marginal annotations, that 
are yet inedited, remain to be examined ; many 
editions and manuscripts^ to be more carefully col- 
lated; and many separate dissertations and works 
of criticism to be considered. But this is not all 
That line of reading which the Poet himself appears 
to have pursued (and there are many vestiges in his 
works by which we shall be enabled to ducover 't) 
must be diligently tracked ; and the search, I have 
little doubt, would lead to sources of information, 
equally profitable and unexpected. 

If there is any thing of novelty in the notes 
which accompany the following translation, it will 
be found to consist chiefly in a comparison of the 
Poet with himself, that is, of the Divina Conmiedia 
with his other writings^ a mode of illustration so 
obvious, that it is only to be wondered how othere 
should happen to have made so little use of it. As 
to the imitations of my author by later poets, Italian 
and English, which I have collected in addition to 
those few that had been already remarked, they 
contribute little or nothing to the purposes of illus- 
tration, but must be considered merely as matter of 
curiosity, and as instances of the manner in which 
the great practitioners in art do not scruple to profit 
by their predecessors. 

Qceording to the order of time in which they were writteo, 
and accompanied by a Latin txanslation for the use of for- 
dgaen. QineMiertt ibid, p. 64. 

^ The Count Mortara has lately shown me many various 
readings he has remariced on collating the numerous MBS. 
of Dante in the Canonici collection at the Bodleian. It is to 
bo hoped he will malce them public. [Jan. 1843.J 

> Tne edition which is referred to in the following nofiM 
Ib that printed at Venice in 8 voh. 8vo. 1790 





1365 May.~-DANT£, son of Aligliieri degli AU- 
ghieri and Bella, is bom at Florence. Of 
his own ancestry he speaks in the Paradisei 
Canto XV. and xvi. 
In the same year, Manfredi, king of Naples 
and Sicily, is defeated and slain by Charlen 
of Anjou. H. xxviii. 13, and Forg. iii. 110. 
Guido Novello of Polenta obtains the sovui 

eignty of Ravenna. H. zxvii. 38. 
Battle of Evesham. Simon de Montfort, lead 
er of the barons, defeated and slain. 
1266 Two of the Frati Godenti chosen arbitrators of 
the diiferences of Florence. H. xxiii. 104. 
Gianni de' Soldanieri heads the populace in 

that city. U. zxxii 118. 
Roger Bacon sends a copy of his Opus Majus 
to Pope Clement IV. 
1368 Charles of Anjou puts Conradine to death, 
and becomes king of Naples. H. xxviii. 16, 
and Purg. xx. 66. 
1270 Louis IX. of France dies before Tunis. H:9 
widow Beatrice, daughter of Raymond Be- 
renger, lived till 1295. Purg. vii. 126. Par 
vi. 135. 
1272 Henry III. of England is succeeded by Ed- 
ward I. Purg. vii. 129. 
Guy de Montfort murders Prince Henry, sou 
of Richard, king of the Romans, and ne- 
phew of Henry III. of England, at Viterho 
H. xii. 119. Richard dies, as is supposed, 
of grief for this event 
Abulfeda, the Arabic writer, is bom. 
1274 Our Poet first sees Beatrice, daughter of Folco 
Rodolph acknowledged emperor. 
Philip III. of France marries Mary of Bra- 
bant, who lived till 1321. Purg. vi. 24 


A. ft. 

1274 Thomas Aquinas dies. Purg. xx. 67, aud Par- 

X. 96 
Buonaventura dies. Par. xiL 25. 

1275 Pierre de la Brosse, secretary to Philrp III. of 

France, executed. Purg. yi. 23. 
127G Giotto, the painter, is bom. Purg. xi. 95. 
Pope Adrian V. dies. Purg. xix. 97. 
Guido Gninicelli, the poet, dies. Purg. xL 9G, 
and xxyi. 83. 

1277 Pope John XXI. dies. Par. xii. 126. 

1278 Ottocar, king of Bohemia, dies. Purg. vii. 

97. Robert of Gloucester is living at this 

1279 Dionysios succeeds to the throne of Portugal. 

Par. xix. 135. 

1280 Albertus Magnus dies. Par. x. 95. 

Our Poet's fnend, Busone da Gubbio, is bom 
about this time. See the Life of Dante pre- 

William of Ockham is bom about this time. 

1281 Pope Nicholas III. dies. H. xix. 71. 

Dante studies at the uniyersities of Bologna 

and Padua. 
About this time Rieordano Malaspina, the Flo- 

rentme annalist, dies. 

1282 The Sicilian vespers. Par. viii. 80. 

The French defeated by the people of ForlL 

H. xxviL 41. 
Tribaldello de' Manfredi betrays the city of 

Faenaa. H. xxxii. 119. 

1284 Prince Charles of Anjou is defeated, and made 

prisoner by Rugier de Lauria, admiral to 
Peter III. of Aragon. Purg. xx. 78. 

Charles I. king of Naples, dies. Purg. vii. 111. 

Alonzo X. of Castile, dies. He caused the 
Bible to be translated into Castilian, and all 
legal instruments to be drawn up in that 
language. Sancho IV. succeeds him. 

Philip (next year IV. of France) marries Jane, 
daughter of Henry of Navarre. Purg. vil 

1285 Pope Martin IV. dies. Purg. xxiv. 23. 
Philip III. of France and Peter III. of Aragcn 

die. Purg. vii. 101 and 110. 
Henry II. king of Cyprus, comes to the throno 
Par. xix. 1& 


A. D. 

L285 Simou Memmi, the painter, celebrated by Fe 
trarch, is bom. 

1287 Guido dalle Colonne (mentioned by Dante in 

his De Vnlgari Eloquio) writes ** The War 
of Troy." 
Pope Honorius IV. dies 

1288 Haquin, king of Norway, makes war on Den- 

mark. Par. xix. 135. 

Count Ugolino de' Gherardeschi dies of famine. 
H. xxxiii. 14. 

The Scottish poet, Thomas Learmouth, com- 
monly called Thomas the Rhymer, is living 
at this time. 

1289 Dante is in the battle of Campaldmo, where 

the Florentines defeat the people of Arezzo, 
June 11. Purg. v. 90. 

1290 Beatrice dies. Purg. xxxii. 2. 

He serves in the war waged by the Floren- 
tines upon the Pisans, and is present at 
the surrender of Caprona in the autumn 
H. xxi. 92. 

Guido dalle Colonne dies. 

William, marquis of Montferrat, b made pris- 
oner by his traitorous subjects, at Alessan 
dria in Lombardy. Purg. vii. 133. 

Michael Scot dies. H. xx. 115. 

1291 Dante marries Gemma de' Donati, with whom 

he lives unhappily. By this marriage ho 

had five sons and a daughter. 
Can Grande della Scala is bom, March 9 

H. i. 98. Purg. xx. 16. Par. xvii. 75, and 

xxvii. 135. 
The renegade Christians assist the Saracens to 

recover St. John D'Acre. H. xxvii. 84. 
The Emperor Rodolph dies. Purg. vi. 104, 

and vii. 91. 
Alonzo III. of Aragon dies, and is succeeded 

by James II. Purg. vii. 113, and Par. xix 

Eleanor, widow of Henry III. dies. Par. vl 135 

1292 Pope Nicholas IV. dies. 
Roger Bacon die& 

John Baliol, king of Scotland, crowned. 
1294 Clement V. abdicates the papal chair, ffi 
iii. 56. 
Dante writes his Vita Nuova. 



1294 Fra Guittone d*Arezzo, the poet, die& Puig 

xxiy. 56. 
Andrea TafH, of Florence, the worker in Mo- 
saic, dies. 

1295 Dante's preceptor, Brunette Latini, dies. IL 

XV. 28. 
Charles Martel, king of Hungary, visits Flo* 

rence. Par. viiL 57, and dies in the same 

Frederick, son of Peter III. of Aragon, be- 
comes king of Sicily. Purg. vii. 117, and 

Par. xix.127. 
Taddeo, the physician of Florence, called the 

Hippocratean, dies. Par. xii. 77. 
Marco Polo, the traveller, returns from the 

East to Venice. 
Ferdinand IV. of Castile comes to the throne. 

Par. xix. 122. 

1296 Forese, the companion uf Dante, dies. Purg 

xxxiii. 44. 

Sadi, the most celebrated of the Persian wri- 
ters, dies. 

War between England and Scotland, which 
terminates in the submission of the Scots to 
Edward I. ; but in the following year. Sir 
William Wallace attempts the deliverance 
of Scotland. Par. xix. 121. 
1298 The Emperor Adolphus falls in a battle with 
his rival, Albert I., who succeeds him in the 
Empire. Purg vi. 98. 

Jacopo da Varagine, archbishop of Genoa, 
author of the I^genda Aurea, dies. 

1300 The Bianca and Nera parties take their ritie 

in Pistoia. H. xxxii. 60. 
This is the year in which he supposes him 

self to see his vision. H. i. 1, and xxi 

He is chosen chief magistrate, or first of tho 

Priors of Florence : and continues in office 

from June 15 to August 15. 
Cimabue, the painter, dies. Purg. xi. 93. 
Guide Cavalcanti, the most beloved of oui 

Poet's friends, dies. H. x. 59, and Purg 

xi. 96. 

1301 The Bianca party expels the Nera from Pistoia 

H. xxiv. 142 



A. D. 

1302 January 27. During his absence at Rome 

Dante is mulcted by his fellow-citis;ens iu 

the sum of 8000 lire, and condemned to two 

years* banishment 
March 10. He is sentenced, if taken, to be- 

Fulcieri de' Calboli commits ^eat atrocitioa 

on certain of the Ghibelline party. Furg 

xiv. 61. 
Carlino de' Pazzi betrays the castle di Pianc 

Travigne, in Valdamo, to the Fiorentinna 

H. xxxii. 67. 
The French vanquished in the battle o£ Cour- 

trai. Furg. xx. 47. 
James, king of Majorca and Minorca, die<? 

Far. xix. 133. 

1303 Fope Boniface VIII. dies. H. xix. 55. Furg 

XX. 86 ; xxxii. 146, and Far. xxvii. 20. 

The other exiles appoint Dante one of a 
council of twelve, under Alessandro du 
llomena. He appears to have been much 
dissatisfied with his colleagues. Far. xvii 

Robert of Brunne translates into English verse 
the Manuel de Fech^, a treatise written in 
French by Robert Grosseteste, bishop of 

1304 Dante joins with the exiles iu an unsuccessful 

attack on the city of Florence. 
May. The bridge over the Amo breakf: 

down during a representation of the iufei- 

ual torments exhibited on that river. li 

xxvi. 9. 
July 20. Fetrarch, whose father had been 

banished two years before from Floience, i^ 

born at Arezzo. 
L305 Winceslaus II. king of Bohemia, dies. Furg 

vii. 99, and Far. xix. 123. 
A conflagration happens at f^orence. 11 

xxvi. 9. 
Sir William Wallace is executed at London. 

1306 Dante visits Fadua. , 

1307 He is in Lunigiana with the Marchese Mai 

cello Malaspina. Furg. viii. 133 ; xix. 140 
Dolcino, the fanatic, is burned. H. xxviii. 53 
Fdward IT of England comes to the throne. 


1308 The Emperor Albert I. murdered. Piirg. tL 

98, and Par. xU. 114. 
CoFBO Douati, Dante's political eneir.y, slaiii. 

Purg. xxiv. 81. 
He seeks an asylum at Verona, under the roof 

of the Signori deila Scala. Par. xviL 69. 
He wanders, about this time, over various parts 

of Italy. See his Convito. He is at Paris 

a second time ; and, according to one of tho 

early commentators, visits Oxford. 
Robert, the patron of Petrarch, is crowned 

king of Sicily. Par. ix. 2. 
Duns Scotus dies. He was bom about the 

same time as Dante. 
'.309 Charles II. king of Naples dies. Par. xix 

KilO The Order of the Templars abolished. Purg 

XX. 94. 
Jean de Meun, the continuer of the Roman 

de la Rose, dies about this time. 
Pier Crescenzi of Bologna writes his book on 

agriculture, in Latin. 

1311 Fra Giordano da Rivalta, of Pisa, a Domi- 

nican, the author of sermons esteemed foi 
th/) purity of the Tuscan language, dies. 

1312 Robert, king of Sicily, opposes the corona 

tion of the Emperor Henry VII. Par. viii 

Ferdinand IV. of Castile, dies, and is succeed- 
ed by Alonzo XI. 

Dino Compagni, a distinguished Florentine, 
concludes ^ history of his own time, writ- 
ten in elegant Italian. 

Gaddo Gaddi, the Florentine artist, dies. 

1313 The Emperor Henry of Luxemburgh, by 

whom he had hoped to be restored to Flor- 
ence, dies. Par. xvii. 8U, and xxx. 135 
Henry is succeeded by Lewis of Bavaria. 

Dante takes refuge at Ravenna, with Guide 
Novello da Polenta. 

Giovanni Boccaccio is bom 

Pope Clement V. dies. H. xix. 86, and Pai 
xxvii. 53, and xxx. 141 

1314 Philip IV. of France dies. Purg vii 108, aiitJ 

Par. xix. 117. 
Louis X. succeeds 


A. D 

1314 Ferdinand IV. of Spain, dies. Par. zix. 199l 
Giacopo da Carrara defeated by Can Grandoj 

who makes himself Master of Yicenza. 
Par. ix. 45. 

1315 Louis X. of France marries Clemenza, sister 

to our Poet's friend, Charles Martel, king 
of Hungary. Par. ix. 2. 

1316 Louis X. of France dies, and is succeeded by 

John XXII. elected Pope. Par. xxvii. 53. 
Joinville, the French historian, dies about tliib 


1320 About this time John Gower is bom, eigh; 

years before his friend Chaucer. 

1321 July. Dante dies at Ravenna, of a complain* 

brought on by disappointment at his failure 
in a negotiation which he had been con 
ducting witli the Venetians, for his patron 
Guido rl^ovello da Polenta. 
Ilis obsequies are sumptuously performed af 
i^aveDua by Guido, who liimself died in tbf 
ensuing year. 





The writer, having lost his w&y in a gloomy forest, and beinp 
hindered Ly certain wild beasts firom aseending a mountain 
is uiet bv Virgil, who promises to show him the punish- 
ments of Hell, and afterwards of Pnigatory; and that be 
shall then be condneted by Beatrice into Pandleo. lis 
follows the Roman poet. 

In the midway* of this our mortal life, 
I fomid me in a gloomy wood, astray 
Gone from the path direct : and e'en to tell. 
It were no easy task, how savage wild 
That forest, how robust and rough its growth, 
Which to remembei* only, my dismay 
Renews, in bitterness not far from death. 
Yet, to discourse of what there good befell. 
All else will I relate discovered Siere. 

How first I entered it I scarce can say, 
8ach sleepy dulness in that instant weigh'd 

> IntkemidwaigA That the era of the Poem is intended by 
these words to be fixed to the thirty-fifth year of the poet*a 
sge, A. D. 1300, will appear more plainly in Canto xxi., where 
that date is explicitly marked. 

In his Ck>nvito, hnman life is compared to an arch or bow, 
the highest point of which is, in those well fhuned by nature, 
at their thirty-fifth year. Opere di Dante, ediz. Yen 8vo, 
7B3, t. i. p. lf»5. 

• IFA^ to r€member.\ ** Even when I remember I aiu 
«fmid, and trembliug takcth hold on my fiesh/* Job xxi 6. 

52 THE VISION ia-3o 

My eenses down, when the true path I left ; 

But whea a mouutain's foot I reached, where cloded 

The valley that had pierced my heart with dread, 

I look'd aloft, and aaw his shoulders broad 

Already vested with that planet's beam/ 

Who leads all wanderers safe throug;h every way 

Then was a little respite to the fear, 
That in my heart's recesses^ deep had lain 
All of that night, so pitifully pass'd : 
And as a man, with difficult short breath, 
Forespent with toiling, 'scaped from sea to diore, 
Turns* to the perilous wide waste, and stands 
At gaze ; e'en so my spirit, that yet fail'd. 
Struggling with terror, tum'd to view the straits 
That none hath pass'd and lived. My weary frame 
After short pause recomforted, again 
I joumey'd on over that lonely steep. 
The hinder foot still firmer.* Scarce the ascent 
Begran, when lo ! a panther,* nimble, light, 
And cover'd with a speckled skin, appear'd ; 
Nor, when it saw me, vanish'd ; rather strove 
To check my onward going ; that oft-times, 
With purpose to retrace my steps, I tum'd. 

The hour was morning's pzime, and on his wuy 
Abft the sun ascended with those stars,* 
That with him rose when Love divine first move<l 
Those its fair works : so that with joyous hope 
All things conspired to fill me, tiie gay skin'' 

' ThatplaneVabeatk.] The sun. 

* JUjf hearVa rece»9ta.\ Nel lago del cuor. 

Lombard! cites an imitation of this by Kedl in his Ditinunbo 

baon vinl son quegli, che acqnuoino 
Le procelle si fosche e rabeile, 
Che nel lago del cuor Tanime Inquietano 

' TVnu.] bo in our Poet*s second pealm : ' 

Come colui, che andando per lo bowco, 
Da spino puntoi, a qael si volge e guarda 

£ven as one, in passing throagh a wood, 
Pierced by a thorn, at which he turns and looks. 

< The kinder foot.] It is to be remembered, that In as^ 
oendlng a hill the weight of the body rests on the hindoi 

* ^panther.] Pleasure or luxury. 

frith tho99 »tar».] The sun was in Aries, in which sign 
he supposes it to have begun its course at the creation. 

T Tkegay akin.\ A late editor of the Divina Coinmedia, 
"^ignor Zr)ta, has spoken of the present translatioD as the 

ilhas. HELL, Canto I. 53 

Of that swift animal, the matin dawn, 
And the sweet season. Soon that joy was chased, 
And by new dread succeeded, when in view 
A lion^ came, 'gainst me as it appeared, 
Witli his head held aloft and hnnger-mad. 
That e'en the air was fear-stnick. A she-woli* 
Was at his heels, who in her leanness seem'd 
Full of all wants, and many a land hath made 
Disconsolate ere now. She v/ith such fear 
O'erwhelmed me, at the sight of her appall'd. 
That of the height all hope I lost As one. 
Who, with his gain elated, sees the time 
When all nnwares is gone, he inwardly 

only one that has rendered this passage rightly: hut lb 
If ayley had shown me the way, in his very sUlflu venlon of 
Che first three Cantos of the Inferno^ inserted in the notes Ic 
his Essay on Epic Poetry : 

I now was raised to hope snblime 
By these bright omens of my fi&te benign, 
The beanteoas beast and the sweet hoar of prime. 

All the Ck>mmentators, whom I have seen, understand ooi 
l*oet to say that the season of the year and the hour of the 
day induced him to hope for the gay skin of the panther; and 
there is something in the sixteenth Canto, verse 107, which 
countenances their interpretation, although that which I have 
followed slUI appears to me the more pnwable. 

* A lion.] Pride or ambition 

* ^sAs-wo^T'J Avarice 

It cannot be doubted that the image of these three beasts 
coming against him is taken by our author ftom the prophet 
Jeiemuih, v. 6 : '* Wherefcne a lion out of the forest shall slay 
them, and a wolf of the eveninss shall spoil them, a leopard 
shall watch over their cities.*^ Roasetti, fUlowing Dionisi 
and oSbet later CoraaMntators, internets Dante's leopard to 
denote Florence, his lion the Jdiog of France, and his wolf the 
Court of Borne. It is far from improbable that our author 
might have had a second allegory of this sort in his viewj 
even as Spenser in the introductory letter to his poem, tells us 
that ''in the Fbery Queen he meant Glory in his general in- 
tentloo, but in his particular he conceived the most excellent 
and glorious person of his sovereign the Queen.*' " And yet,** 
lie adds, **in some places else I do otherwise shadow ber." 
Bach involution of allegcnical meanings may well be supposed 
to have been firequently present to the mind of Dante through- 
oat the composition of this poenv Whether his acute and 
eloquent interpteter, Bossetn, may not have been carried 
much too far in the pursuit of a fiivorite hypothesis, is another 
question; and I must avow my disbelief of the secret Jargon 
liapated to our poet and the oUier writers of that ttme in the 
Coounent on the Divina Commedia and in the Spirito Antim 
pale, the latter of which works is familiarized to the English 
reader In Miss Wnrd's fhithfal translatioc. 

54 IHIS VlSIOfJ. SMiu 

MournB with heart-gripmg anguisli ; such was I, 
Haunted by that feU beast, never at peace, 
Who coming o'er against me, by degrees 
Impeird me where the sun in silence rests.^ 

While to the lower space with backward step 
r fell, my ken discem'd the form of one [speech 
Whose voice seem'd faint through long disuse ol 
When him in that great desert I espied, 
^ Have mercy on me,-' cried I out aloud, 
« Spirit ! or livmg man ! whatever thou he" 

He answered : ** Now not man, man once I witfi: 
And bom of Lombard parents, Mantuans both 
By country, when the power of Julius^ yet 
Was scarcely firm. At Rome my life was passed, 
Beneath the mild Augustus, in the time 
Of fabled deities and false. A bard 
Was I, and made Anchises' upright son 
The subject of my song, who came from Troy, 
When the flames prey'd on Ilium's haughty towers. 
But thou, say wherefore to such perils past 
Retum'st thou? wherefore not this pleasant mount 
Ascendest, cause and source of all delight?" 
" And art thou then that Virgil, that well-spring 
From which such copious floods of eloquence 
Have issued?" I with front abash'd replied. 
** Glory and light of all the tuneful train ! 
May it avail me, that I long with zeal 
Have sought thy volume, and with love immense 

* tVhrre the aun in ailenee rests.] 

The ran to me is dark. 
And silent as the moon, 
When she deserts the night. 
Hid in her vacant interlunar cave. 

The same metaphor will recnr, Canto v. verse 29 

Into a place I came 
Where light was silent ail. 

* n "ken the power of Julius.'] 

Nacqui sub Julio, ancorchd fosse tardi. 

This Is explained by the Commentators: *^ Although it weis 
lather late with respect to my birth, before Jnlias Cnsar as- 
siuned the supreme authority, and made himself perpeUml 
dictator." Viigil, indeed, was born twenty-five yean before 
iiat event 

* nium's haughty towers.] 

Cecilitque snperbum 
Cium. FirfU. JBn, ML S 

M^IOSL ilELL, Canto I. 55 

Have conn'd it o'er. My master thou, and g^ide !^ 
Thou he from whom alone I have derived 
That style, which for its beauty into fame 
Exalts me. See the beast,- from whom I fled. 
O save mo from her, thou iilustrious sage ! 
For every vein and pulse throughout my frame 
She hath made tremble." He, soon as he saw 
That I was weeping, answer'd, *' Thou must needa 
Another way pursue, if thou wouldst 'scape 
From out that savage wilderness. This beast, 
At whom thou criest, her way will suffer none 
To pass, and no less liind'rance makes than deatli 
So bad and so accureed in her kind) 
That never sated is her ravenous will. 
Still after food^ more craving than before. 
To many an animal in wedlock vile 
She fastens, and shall yet to many more, 
(Jntil that greyhound' come, who shall destroy 
Her with sharp pain. He will not life support 
By earth nor its base metals, but by love. 
Wisdom, and vulue ; and his land shall be 
The land 'twixt either Feltro.^ In his might 

^ My master tkoUf and guide,] 

Tu se* lo mio maestro, eU nito autore, 
Tn se* solo colui. 

Thon art my father, thoa my author, thou. 

MUion, P. L.y ii. 864. 

2 Still after food.] So Frezzl : 

La voglia sempre ha fame, e mai non s*empie. 
£d al piu pa^to piu riman digiuna. 

II QtuidriregiOj lib. ii. cap. xi 

Ventnri observes that the verse in tiie original is borrowed by 

* 7%at greyhound,] This- passage has been commonly nn 
derstood as a eulogium on the liberal spirit of his Veronese 
patron, Can Grande delia Scala. 

* *Thoixt either Fleltro.] Verona, the country of Can della 
Bcala, is situated between Feltro, a city in the Marca Trivi 
giana, and Monte Feltro, a city in the territory of Urbino. 

But Dante perhaps does not merely point out the place of 
Can Grande's nativity, for he may allude fturther to a pro- 
phecy, ascribed to Buchael Scot, which imported that the 
"^Dog of Verona would be lord of Padua and of all the Marca 
Triv^^iana." It was fulfilled in the year 1339, a little before 
Can Grande's death. See G. Villani Hist. 1. x. cap. cv. and 
cxU. and some lively criticism by Gasparo Gozzi, entitled Glu- 
dizio degli Antichi Poeti, &c., printed at the end of the Zatta 
edition of Dante, t. iv. part U. p. 15. I'he prophecy, it is 
tlkely, was a forgery; for Michael died before 1300, when 

ae THB VISION. 103-127 

Shall safety to Italia's plains^ ariae, 

For Tchose fair realm, Camilla, virgin pure, 

Nifius, Euryalus, and Tumus fell. 

He, with incessant chase, through every town 

Shall worry, until he to hell at length 

Restore her, thence by envy first let loose 

I, for thy profit pondering, now devise 

That thou mayst follow me ; and I, thy giiidd. 

Will lead thee hence through an eternal space, 

Where thou shalt hear despairing shrieks, and see 

Spirits of old tormented, who invoke 

A second death ;* and those next view, who dwell 

Content in fire,* for that they hope to come. 

Whene'er the time may be, among the blest. 

Into whose re^ons if thou then desire 

To ascend, a spirit worthier* than I 

Must lead thee, in whose charge, when I depart 

Thou shalt be left : for that Almighty King, 

Who reigns above, a rebel to his law 

Adjudges me ; and therefore hath decreed 

That, to his city, none through me should come. 

He in all parts hath sway ; there rules, there holds 

His citadel and throne. O happy those. 

Whom there he chooses !*' I to him in few : 

" Bard ! by that God, whom thou didst not adore* 

Can Grande was only nine years old. See Hell, xx. 115, and 
Par. zvii. 75. Troya has given a new interpretation to Dante*« 
IHrediction, which he applies to Uguccione della Faggiola, 
whose coantry also was situated between two Feltros. See 
the Veltro Allegorico di Dante, p. 110. Bat after all the pains 
he has taken, this very able winter fails to make it clear tluu 
Uguccione, though he acted a prominent part as a Ghibeline 
leader, is intended here or in Fui^tory, c. xxxiii. 38. The main 
proofs rest on an ambiguous report mentioned by Boccaccio of 
the Inferno being dedicated to him, and on a suspicious letter 
attributed to a certain friar Dario, in which the friar describes 
Danle addressiBg him as a stranger, and desiring him to con- 
vey that portion of the poem to Uguccione. There is no di- 
rect allusion to him throughout &e Divina Commedia, as 
tnere is to the other chief public protectors of our poet dniiaf 
his exile. 

1 Italia's plains.] "UmUe Italia," from Virgil, iEn., Ub 

Humilemque videmua 

* .4 second death.] " And in these days men shall seek 
death, and shall not find it; and shall desire to die, and death 
shall flee from them.' Rev. ix. 6. 

* Content in fire.] The spirits in Purgatory. 

< j9 spirit worthier.] itoatrice, who conducts the poe: 
fhronffh Paradise 


^-138. HELL, Canto IJ 6V 

I do beseech thee (that this ill and worse 
I may escape) to lead me where thou saidst, 
That I Saint Peter's gate^ may view, and thoKe 
Wh}, as thou tell'st, are in such dismal plight.^' 
Onward he moved, I close his steps pursued. 



After the invocation, which poets ore used to prefix to then 
works, he shows, that, on a consideration of his own 
strength, he doubted whether it sulitced for tiie Journey 
proposed to him, but that, being comforted by Virgil, he 
at hist took courage, and followed him as his guide aud 

Now was the day departing,' and the air, 
Imbrown'd with shadows, from their toils releasei* 
All animals on earth ; and I alone 
Prepared myself the conflict to sustain. 
Both of sad pity, and that perilous road, 
Which my unerring memory shall retrace 

Muses ! O high genius ! now vouchsafe 
Vour aid. O mind !' that all. I saw hast kept 
Safe in a written record, here thy worth 
And eminent endowments come to proo£ 

1 thus began : " Bard ! thou who art my guide. 
Consider well, if virtue be in me 

Sufficient, ere to this high enterprise 

Thou trust me. Thou hast told that Silvius' siro/ 

Yet clothed in corruptible flesh, among 

The immortal tribes had entrance, and was there 

Sensibly present Yet if heaven's great Lord, 

» Saint Peter*8 gate.] The gate of Purgatory, which the 
poet feigns to be guarded by an angel placeu on that station 
by 6t Peter. 

* Jfno vas the day.] A compendium of Virgirs desGrtp> 
tfnn, Ma., lib. iv. 522. Compare ApoUonius Rhodius, lib. Ill 
841, and lib. iv. 1058. 

The day gan fallln ; and the darke night. 
That revith bestis from their businesse, 
Berafle me my booke, &c. 

Chaucer. 7%« JistenUde of f\ntieif. 

O thought ! that write all that I jOMt 
And in the tresorie it set 
Of my bralne, now shall men see 
If any virtue in thee be. 

Chaucer Temple of Faw: b. IL V. Ift. 

• Silvtus' tire ' ./FlncA« 

58 THE VISION. l»-54 

Almighty foe to ill, such favor show'd 

In contempliitiou of the high efiect» 

Both what and who from him should issue fortli« 

It seems in reason's judgment well deserved ; 

Bith he of Rome and of Rome's empire wide, 

Tn heaven's empyreal height was chosen sire : 

Both which, if truth be spoken, wore ordain'd 

A.nd stablish'd for the holy place, where sits 

Who to great Peter's sacred chair succeeds. 

He firom this journey, in thy song renown'd, 

Leam'd things, that to his victory gave riso 

And to the papal robe. In after-times 

The chosen vessel^ also travell'd there,* 

To bring us back assurance in that faith 

Which is the entrance to salvation's way 

But I, why should I there presume ? or who 

Permits it? not ^neas I, nor Paul. 

Myself I deem not worthy, and none else 

Will deem me. I, if on this voyage then 

I venture, fear it will in folly end. 

Thou, who art wise, better my meaning know'pt 

Than I can speak." As one, who unresolves 

What he hath late resolved, and with new thonghtH 

Changes his purpose, from his first intent 

Removed ; e'en such was I on that dun coast, 

Wasting in thought my enterprise, at first 

So eagerly embraced. ** If right thy words 

I scan," replied that shade magnanimous, 

" Thy soul is by vile fear assail'd,' which oft 

So overcasts a man, that he recoils 

From noblest resolution, like a beast 

At some false semblance in the twilight gloom 

That from this terror thou mayst free thyself, 

I will instruct thee why I came, and what 

I heard in that same instant, when for thee 

Grief touch'd me first. I was among the tribe, 

Who rest suspended,^ when a dame, so blest 

1 The ehoaen V€t»el,\ St. Paul. Acts ix. 13. *' Bat the Lord 
iiaid onto him, Go thy way ; for he is a chosen vessel luto me." 

* Tkert.] This refers to ** the immortal tribes,** v. 15. 8t 
Pan! having been canglit up to heaven. 2 Cor. zii. 3. 

I Thy tovl it by vile fear aesail'd.] 

L*anima tna 6 da viltatc oflesa 
Bo in Bemi, Orl. Inn. lib. Ui. e. i. st. 53. 

Be i*alma avele oflbsa da viltate. - 

* W%0 mt Mutpeiulerf.] The spirits in Limbo, neither ad- 
nltted tc a state of gl vy nor doomed t> ponishmeni. 

:*5-e4. HELL. Canto II ^^ 

And lovely I bcaought her to command, 
Call'd me ; her eyes were brighter than the sUr 
Of day ; and she, with gentle voice and soft, 
Angelically tuned, her speech addressed : 

* O courteous shade of Mantua ! thou whose fame 
' Yet lives, and shall live long as nature lasts !' 

* A friend, not of my fortune but myself,' 

* On the wide desert in his road has met 

* Hind'rance so great, that he through fear has tum'd 

* Now much I dread lest he past help have ptray'd. 

< And I be risen too late for his relief, 

' From what in heaven of him I heard. Speed now. 

* And by thy eloquent persuasive tongue, 

< And by all means for his deliverance meet, 
( Assist him. So to me will comfort spring. 

' I, who now bid thee on this errand forth, 
' Am Beatrice f from a place I come 

* Revisited with joy. Love brought me thence, 

* Who prompts my speech. When m my Master's 

* I stand, thy praise to him I oft will tell.' [sight 

" She then was silent, and I thus began : 

* O Lady ! by whose influence alone 

* Mankind excels whatever is contain'd^ 

< Within that heaven which hath the smallest orb, 
' So thy command delights me, that to obey, 

< If it were done already, would seem late. 

* No need hast thou farther to speak thy will : 
' Yet tell the reason, why thou art not loth 

* To leave that ample space, where to return 
' Thou bumest, for this centre here beneath.' 

1 ^» nature lasts.] Quanto '1 moto Ion tana. "Mondo,** 
Instead of ** moto," which Lombard! claims as a reading pe- 
culiar to the Nidobeatina edition and some MSS., Is also ia 
Landino*8 edition of 1484. Of this Monti was not aware. 
Bee his Proposta, onder the word ** Lontanare." / 

* .4 friend^ iwt of my fortune but myself.] 8e non fortnnn 
3ed homlnibos solere esse araicam. 

Comelii Mpotis AtUci Vita^ i. ix« 

Ctotera fortnnas, non mea tiirt)a, fait. 

Ovid, Trist. lib. i. el. v. 34. 

My fortune and my seeming destiny 

He made the bond, and broke it not with me. 

Coleridg(^9 JDeath of WaUenstem^ act 1 sc. 7 

* Beatrice.] The daughter of Foico Portinari, who is here 
Invested with the character of celestial wisdom or theology. 
Bee the Life of Dante prefixed. 

* Whatemer i* cantain*d.] Every other thing comprised 
within the lanar heaven, which, bt'ing the lowest of all, bat 
(he smallest circle. 




** She then ; * Smce thou so deeply wouldbt inquiro 
I will instruct thee briefly why no dread 
Hinders my entrance here. Those things alone 
Are to be fear'd whence evil may proceed ; 
None else, for none are terrible beside. 
I am 60 framed by God, thanks to his grace I 
That any sufFerance of your misery 
Touches me not, nor flame of that fierce fire 
Assails me. In high heaven a blessed dame' 
Resides, who mourns with such effectual grief 
That hind'rance, which I send thee to removes 
That God's stem judgment to her will inclinefi. 
To Lucia^ calling, her she thus bespake : 
' Now doth thy faithful servant need thy aid, 
' And I commend him to thee." At her word 
Sped Lucia, of all cruelty the foe, 
And coming to the place, where I abode 
Seated with Rachel, her of ancient days. 
She thus addressed me : " Thou true praise of God 
Beatrice ! why is not thy succor lent 
To him, who so much loved thee, as to leave 
For thy sake all the «nultitude admires ? 
Dost thou not hear how pitiful his wail. 
Nor mark the death, which in the torrent flood, 
Swoln mightier than a sea, him struggling holds 7*^ 
Ne'er among men did any with such speed 
Haste to their profit, flee from their annoy. 
As when these words were spoken, I came here*, 
Down from my blessed seat, trusting the force 
Of thy pure eloquence, which thee, SLud all 
Who well have mark'd it, into honor brings.* 
." When she had ended, her bright beaming eyes 
Tearful she tum'd aside ; whereat I felt 
Redoubled zeal to serve thee. As she will'd, 
Thus am I come: I saved thee from the beast, 
Who thy near way across the goodly mount 
Prevented. What is this comes o'er thee then ? 
Why, why dost thou hang back ? why in thy breoai 
Harbor vile fear? why hast not courage th(re. 

1 Jl blesred dame.] The Divine Mercy. 

* Z,vjta..1 The enlightening Grace of Heaven; as it h 
commonly explained. But Loiubardi has well observed, that 
as oxii poet places her in the Paradise, c. zzxii., among the 
•onb or the blessed, so it is probable that she, like Beatrice, 
had a real existence; and he accordingly supposes her to 
have been Saint Lucia tlie martyr, although she La here 
>|;iiv8entative of an alistract idea 

124-141. HELL, Canto 111. 61 

And noble daring ; Bineo three maids/ bo bleflt, 
Thy safety plan, e'en in the coart of heaven ; 
And so much certain good my words forebode?" 

As florets,* by the frosty air of night [lear«»8| 

Bent down and closed, when day has blanch'd liyrnt 
Rise all unfolded on their spiry stems ; 
So was my fainting vigor new restored, 
And to my heart such kindly courage ran, 
That I as one undaunted soon replied : 
" O full of pity she, who undertook 
My succor ! and thou kind, who didst perform 
So soon her true behest ! With such desire 
Thou hast disposed me to renew my voyage, 
That my first purpose fully is resumed. 
Lead on : one only will is in us both. 
Thou art my guide, my master thou, and lord." 

So spake I ; and when he had onward moved, 
I enteiPd on the deep and woody way. 



Dante, foUowlnK Virgil, comes to the gate of Hell ; where, 
after having read the dreadful words that are written 
thereon, they both enter. Here, as he understands firom 
•Yir^ those were punished who had passed their time 
(for living it could not be called) in a state of apathy and 
indifference both to good and evil. Then pursuing their 

^ Three maid$.] The IHvine Mercy, Lucia, and Beatrix) 

s jf« JUnrets.\ 

Ccme fioretto dal nottumo gelo 

Chinato e chiuso, poi che il sol Tlmbianca, 

S*apre e si leva dritto sofva il stelo. 

BoeeauM. R FUottnUOy p. iii. St. xiii 

But right as floures through the cold of night 
Iclosed, stonpen in her stalkes lowe, 
Bedresaen hem agen the sunne bright, 
And spreden in her Unde course by rowe, fcc. 

Ckamur. TtoUm* and Cteteide, b. 11. 

It is firom Boccaccio rather than Dante that Chaucer ha» 
taken this simile, which he applies to Troilus on the same 
occasion as Boccaccio has done. He appears indeed to have 
iBltated or rather paraphrased the Filostrato in his Tndlat 
and Creseide ; for it is not yet known who that Lollins is, 
ftom whom he professes to take the poem, and who is again 
mentioned in the House of Fbme, b. iii. 

The simile in the text has been imitated by many others ; 
among whom see Bemi, Orl. Inn., lib. 1, c. zii st. 86. MailnoL 
Adone, c. xvii. st. 63, and Son. ** Donna vestita dl nero,'*ana 
Bpenser^s Faery Queen, b. iv. c. xii. st. 34, and b. vi. c. U. st 
15, and Boccaccio again in the Teseide. lib. 9. st 38. 

62 THE TISION. l-3b 

way, they arrive at the river Acheron ; and there find the 
old ferryman Charon, who takes the spirits oveir to the 
opposite shore ; which as soon as Dante •reaches, he le 
seized with terror, and falls into a trance. 

*< Through me you pass into the city of wo : 
Through me you pass into eternal pain : 
Through me among the people lost for aye. 
Justice the founder of my fabric moved : 
To rear me was the task of power divine, 
Bupremest wisdom, and primeval love.* 
Before me things create were none, save tlungs 
Eternal, and eternal I endure. 
All hope abandon,* ye who enter here." 

Such characters, in color dim, I mark'd 
Over a portal's lofty arch inscribed. 
Whereat I thus : " Master, these words import 
Hard meaning." He as one prepared replied : 
" Here thou must all distrust behind thee leave ; 
Here be vile fe&r extinguished. We are come 
Where I have told thee we shall see the souls 
To misery doom*d, who intellectual good [forth 

Have lost." And when his hand' he had stretch'd 
To mine, with pleasant looks, whence I was cheer'di 
Into that secret place he led me on. 

Here sighs,* with lamentations and loud moans, 
Resounded through the air pierced by no star, 
That e'en I wept at entering. Various tongrues, 
Horrible languages, outcries of wo. 
Accents of anger, voices deep and hoarse. 
With hands together smote that swelled the sounds. 
Made up a tumult, that for ever whirls 
Round through that air with solid darkness stain'd, 

Povaer dvoxne^ 

Suprcmeat vfisdom^ and primeval love.\ 
The three Persons of the Blessed Trinity. 

* ^U hop* abandon, j 

Lasciate ognl speranza vol ch* entrato 

So 6emi« Ori. Inn., lib. 1, c. 8, st 53. 
Lascia pur delta vita ogni speranza. 

' Jind when hie hand.] 

With that my hand in his he canght anone : 
On which I comfort caught, and went in fast. 

(Saucer, TkeAeeemhle ofFinUee, 

* Here eighe.] ** Post hec omnia ad loca tartarea, et ad m 
iBfemalls iNuratri dedactos sum, qui simile videbatur piite<\ 
loca vero eadem horridis tenebris, fstoribns exhalantibns^ 
itridoribna qaoqie et nimiis plena erant ejnlatibns, Jmta 
qnem infernum vermis erat infinite magnitadinis, .Ugatiu 
Tiaxlma cnena.* Alherici Firio, $ 0. 

89-53 HELL, Canto IH. Q3 

Like to the sand' that m the whirlwind fliti& 

I then, with erroi* yet oncompaaB'd, cried : 
" O master ! what is this I hear? what race 
Are these, who seem so oyercome with wo?" 

He thus to me : " This miserable fate 
Suffer the wretched souls of those, who lived 
Without or praise or blame, with that ill band 
Of angels mix*d, who nor rebellious proved, 
Nor yet were true to God, but for themselves 
Were only. From his bounds Heaven orove them 
Not to impair his lustre ; nor the depth [forth, 

Of Hell receives them, lest the accursed tribe' 
Should glory thence with exultation vain." 

I then : " Master ! what doth aggrieve them thus, 
That they lament so loud?" He straight replied : 
" That will I tell thee briefly. These of death 
No hope may entertain : and their blind life 
So meanly passes, that all other lots 
They env}\ Fame^ of tliem the world hath none, 
Nor suffers ; mercy and justice scorn them both. 
Speak not of them, but look, and pass them by." 

And I, who straightway look'd, beheld a flag,* 
Which whirling ran around so rapidly. 
That it no pause obtained : and following came 
Such a long train of spirits, I should ne'er 

> Like to the sand.] UnnumberM as the sands 

Of Barca or Gyrene's torrid soil, 

Levied to side with warring winds, and poise 

Their lighter wings. JUUton. P. I.., b. d. 903 

With error.] Instead of ** error," Vellatello*s edition of 
1544 has *' orror/* a reading remarked also by Landino, in his 
notes. So mach mistaken is the coUater of the Monte Cassino 
MS. in calling it "lezione da niono notata;*' "a reading 
which no one has observed.** 

* Lest the aeeursed tribe.] Lest the rebellions angels should 
exnlt at seeing those wfio were neutral, and therefore less 
guilty, condemned to the same punishment with themselves. 

Rcwsetti, in a long note on this passage, has ably exposed 
the plausible interpretation of Monti, who would have "alcu- 
na gloria** mean ** no glory,** and thus make Virgil say " that 
the evil ones would derive no honor from the society of the 
neutral.** A similar mistake in the same word is made else- 
where by Lombardl. See my note on c. xii. v. 9. 

* Fkme ] Canceird fVom heaven and sacred memory, 

Nameless in dark oblivion let them dwell. 

JUaton. P.Z.., 

Therefore eternal silence be their doom. 

Ibid. 38S. 

^ J^fbg.] All the grisly legions that troop 

Under the sooty flag of Acheron. 


64 IHE VISION 5*-77 

Have thought that death so many had despoird. 

When some of these I recognised, I saw 
And knew the shade of hun, who to base fear' 
Yielding, abjured his high estate. Forthwith 
[ understood, for certain, this the tribe 
Of those ill spirits both to God displeasing 
And to his foes. These wretches, who ne'er lived, 
Went on in nakedness, and sorely stung 
By wasps a^d hornets, which bedew'd their cheeks 
With blood, that, mix'd with tears, dropp'd to theii 
And by disgustful worms was gather'd there, [feet, 

Then looking farther onwards, I beheld 
A throng upon the shore of a great stream : 
Whereat I thus : " Sir ! grant me now to know 
Whom here we view, and whence impellM they seem 
So eager to pass o'er, as I discern 
Through the blear light 7"^ He thus to me in few * 
" This shalt thou know, soon as om steps arrive 
Beside the woful tide of Acheron." 
Then with eyes downward cast, and fill'd with shotne. 
Fearing my words offensive to his ear. 
Till we had reanh'd the river, I from speech 
Abstained. And lo ! toward us in a bark 
Comes on an old man,' hoary white with eld. 

Who to base fear 

Yielding^ aJtgured his high estate. J 

lliis is commonly understood of Celestine the Fifth, who ab- 
dicated the papal power in 1394. Venturi mentions a work 
written by Innocenzio BarcelUni, of the Celestine order, and 
printed at Milan In 1701, in which an attempt is made to put 
a different interpretation on this passage. 

Lombardi would apply it to some one of Dante's fellow 
citizens, who, reftislnff, urough avarice or want of spirit, tc 
support the partv of the fiianchl at Florence, had been the 
main occasion of the miseries that befell them. But the tes- 
timony of Fetzio degli Uberti, who lived so near the time of 
our author, seems almost decisive on this point. He expreosly 
speaks of the Pope Celestine as being in hell. See the Ditta- 
mondo, L. iv. cap. zzL The usual interpretation is further 
confirmed in a passage in Canto xxvii. v. 101. 

Petrarch, while he passes a high encomium on Celestine 
for his abdication of the papal power, gives us to understand 
that there were others who thought it a disgraceful act Sec 
the De VitA Solit., b. ii. sect ili. c. 18. 

* Tirough the blear l^ht.] Lo fioco lume. 
Bo Fiiid^a, cans. vl. st 12: dual fioco lume. 

* AuoldwuM,'] 

Portitor has horrendns aquas et flumina servat 
Territiili sqnalore Charon, cul plurima mento 
Oanitiest incnlta Jacet ; stint lumina flamuiA 

rirg, wKn., lib. vi. 996 

78-103. HELL, Canto IU. 65 

Crying, " Wo to you, wicked spirits ! hope not 

Ever to see the sky again. I come 

To take yon to the other shore across, 

Into eternal darkness, there to dwell 

In fierce heat and in ice.^ And thou, who there 

Standest, Uve spirit ! get thee hence, and leave 

These who are dead." But soon as he beheld 

I left them not, " By other way," said he, 

" By other haven shalt then come to shore. 

Not by this passage ; thee a nimbler boat* 

Must carry." Then to him thus spake my guide : 

'* Charon ! thyself torment not : so 'tis will'd, 

Where will and power are one : ask thou no more.*' 

Straightway in silence fell the shaggy cheeks 
Of him, the boatman o'er the livid lake,' 
Ground whose eyes glared wheeling flames. Mean- 
Those spirits, faint and naked, color changed, 
^d gnash'd their teeth, soon as the cruel words 
They heard. God and their parents they blasphem sdj 
The human kind, the place, the time, and seed, 
That did engender them and give them birth. 

Then all together sorely wailing drew 
To the cursed strand, that every man must pass 
Who fears not God. Charon, demoniac form. 
With eyes of burning coal,^ collects them all. 
Beckoning, and each, that lingers, with his oar 

* In fierce heat and in iee.] 

The bitter change 

Ol' fierce extremes, estremes by changu more fierce) 
From beds of raging fire to starve in Ice 
Their soft etheteal warmth.^— 

Miltmt, P. £^ b. U. 601. 

^The deliffhted spirit 

To bathe in fiery floods, or to reside 
In thrlUing regions of thick-ribbed ice. 

Skak^. Measure for Meatnrey a. Hi. s. 1. 
Pee note to C. zzxii. 23. 

< A nimbler boat.] He perhaps allndes to the bark ^ swif? 
and light," in which the Angei conducts the spirits to Par 
iatory. 8ee Piwg^ c. iL 10. 

* The livid lake.} Vadalivida. Fny. .2:n., Ub. vi. 390 

^Totins Qt lacOs patidxque paTadis 

. lividissima, mazimeque est profunda vorago. . 

CatuUuM, xviii. 10. 

* With evee of burning" coal.\ 

His looks were dreadful, and his fiery eyes, 
L4ke two great beacons, glared bright and wide. 

i^eMcr, F. Q., b vi. c. viL st. 49 

66 THE VJ8IOJS. 104126 

Strike^j. As fall cff the light autumnal leaves/ 
One still another following, till the bough 
Strews all its honors on the earth beneath ; 
E'en in like manner Adam's evil brood 
Cast themselves, one by one, down from the shore 
Each at a beck, as falcon at liis call.* 

Thus go they over through the umber'd wave ; 
And ever they on the opposing bank 
Be landed, on this side another throng 
Still gathers. " Son," thus spake the courteous giiitlo 
" Those who die subject to the wrath of God 
All here together come from every clime. 
And to o'erpass the river are not loth : 
For so heaven's justice goads them on, that feai 
Is tum'd into desire. iCence ne'er hath pass'd 
Good spirit If of thee Charon complain, 
Now mayst thou know the import of his words." 

This said, the gloomy region trembling shook 
So terribly, that yet with clammy dews 
Fear chilLs my brow. The sad earth gave a blast, 
That, lightening, shot forth a vermilion flame. 
Which all my senses conquer'd quite, and I 
Down dropp'd, as one with sudden slumber seized 



The poet, being roused by a clap of launder, and following 
his guide onwards, descends into Limbo, which is the first 
circle of Hell, where he finds the souls of those, who, al- 
thorgh they have lived virtuously, and luive not to snflbr 
S)t- great sins, nevertheless, through lack of baptism, merit 
not the bliss of Paradise. Hence he is led on by Vligil tn 
descend into the second circle. 

Broke the deep slumber in my brain a crash 
Of heavy thunder, that I shook myself, 
As one by mam force roused. Risen upright, 

> As fall off the light autumnal leave*.] 

Qoam multa in silvis autumni frlgore prime 

Labsa cadant folia. Fir£, JEn., lib. vL 309 

Thick as autumnal leaves, that strew the brooks 
In Vallombrosa, where th* Etruria.! shades 
• High over-arch*d Imbower. Milton^ P. X. , b. i 301 
Compare Apoll. Rhod., lib. iv. p. 814. 

* At falcon at hU eaU.\ This is VellateIlo*s explmiation. 
and seems preferable to that commonly given : '' as a birtf 
tbat is enticed to the cage by the call of another ** 

A-^j HELL, Canto IV. 07 

My rested eyes I moved around, and searched 

With fixed ken. to know what place it was 

Wherein I stood. For certain/on the brink 

I found me of the lamentable vale, 

The dread abyss, that joins a thundrous sou^id* 

Of plaints innumerable. Dark and deep. 

And thick with clouds o'erspread, mine eye in vain 

Explored its bottom, nor could aught discern. 

** Now let us to the blind world there beneath 
DescoLd ;" the bard began, all pale of look : 
** I go the first, and thou shalt follow next.*' 

Then I, his alter'd hue perceiving, thus : 
" How may I ^peed, if thou yieldest to dread, 
Who still art wont to comfort me in doubt 1" 

He then: "The anguish of that race below 
With pity stains my cheek, which thou for fear 
Mistake^ Let us on. Our length of way 
Urges to haste." Onward, this said, he moved 
And entering led me with him, on the bounds 
Of the first circle that surrounds the abyss. 

Here, as mine ear could note, no plaint was heard 
Except of sighs, that made the eternal air 
Tremble, not caused by tortures, but from grief 
Felt by those multitudes, many and vast. 
Of men, women, and infants. Then to me 
The gentle guide : " Inquirest thou not what spirits 
Are Uiese which thou beholdest? Ere thou pass 
Farther, I would thou know, that these of sin 
Were blameless ; and if aught they merited. 
It profits not, since baptism was not theirs. 
The portal' to thy faitL If they before 
The Gospel lived, they served not God aright ; 
And among such am I. For these defects, 
liikd for no other evil, we are lost ; 
Only so far afflicted, that we live 
Desiring without hope.'" Sore grief assail'd 

> jf tkmndroua sound ] Imitated, as Mr. Tbyer has re- 
mnrfced, by Milton, P. L., b. vUl. 242: 

^Bnt long, ere our approaching, heard 

Noise, other than the sound of dance or song, 
Torment, and loud lament, and furious rage. 

• Portal.] *< Porta della fede.** This was an alteration 
made in the text by the Academicians delta Cnisco, on the 
vithofity, as it would appear, of only two MSS. The otlier 
nesMiiiig is *' parte della fede ;*' ** part of the faith." 

* l^ssninf without hope.] 

And with desise to languish without hope. 

MUtoH,F.L.,b.x DOS 

68 THE VISION. 4C>-a8 

My heart at htarin? this, for well I knew 

Suspended m that Limbo many a soul 

Of mighty wofCh. " O tell me, sire revered ! 

Tell me, my master !" I began, through wish 

Of full assurance in that holy faith 

Which vanquishes all error ; " say, did e'er 

Any, or through his own or other's merit. 

Come forth from thence, who afterwards was bles0*d V 

Piercing the secret purport* of my speech. 
He answered : " I was new to that estate. 
When I beheld a puissant one' arrive 
Among us, with victorious trophy crownM 
He forth' the shade of our first parent drew, 
Abel his child, and Noah righteous man. 
Of Moses lawgiver for faith approved. 
Of patriarch Abraham, and David king, 
Israel with his sire and with his sons. 
Nor without Rachel whom so hard he won. 
And others many more, whom he to bliss 
Exalted. Before these, be thou assured, 
No spirit of human kind was ever saved." 

We, while he spake, ceased not our onward roud, 
Still passing through the wood ; for so I name 
Those spirits thick beset. We were not far 
On this side from the summit, when I kenn'd 
A flame, that o'er the darken'd hemisphere 
Prevailing shined. Yet we a little space 
Were distant, not so far but I in part 
Discovcr'd that a tribe in honor high 

1 Secret purport.} Lombardl well observes, that Dante 
seems to have been restrained by awe and reverence from 
uttering the name of Christ in this place of torment ; and 
that for the same canse, probably, it does not occnr once 
Ihroughout the whole of tills first part of the poem. 

s ^ puissant one.] Ova Savioar. 

* He forth.] The author of the Qnadrirefflo has inti ?duo6d 
\ sublime description into his miitation of this passage : 

Pose le renl lit dove si sena ; 

Ma Cristo lul e *1 catarcion d* accl<V)o 

E qneste porte allora gettb a terra. 
Qnando in la grotta entrb *1 Inddo rajo, 

Adamo dlsse : qnesto i lo splendore 

Che ml spirb in faccia da pnuiajo 
Venuto se* aspettato Signore. L. 11. cap. 3. 

Satan hung writhing round the bolt ; but him, 
The huge portcullis, and those gates of brass, 
Christ threw to earth. As down the cavern streamM 
The radiance : " Light," said Adam, " this, that breathed 
FifBt on me. Thou art come, expected Xjord I" 

^Tuch that follows is closely copied by Frczd from oor poei 

60-90. HELL, Canto IV. Q9 

That place possess'd. " O thou, who erery art 
And science valuest ! who are these, that boast 
Such honor, separate from all the rest ?" 

He answerM : " The renown of their great nanieO; 
That echoes through your world above, acquires 
Favor in heaven, which holds them thus advanced." 
Meantime a voice I heard : *< Honor the bard 
Sublime !^ his shade returns, that left us late !** 
No sooner ceased the sound, than I beheld 
Four mighty spirits toward us bend their steps, 
Of semblance neither sorrowful nor glad.' 

When thus my master kind began : " Mark him, 
Who in his right hand bears that falchion keen. 
The other three preceding, as their lord. 
This is that Homer, of all bards supreme : 
Flaccus the next, in satire's vein excelling ; 
The third is Naso ; Lucan is the last. 
Because they all that appellation own, 
With which the voice singly accosted me, 
Honoring they greet me thus, and well they judge." 

So I ^held united the bright school 
Of him the monarch of sublimest song,' 

Honor the bard 


ChMMate r altissimo poeta. 

60 Chiabrera, Canz. Erioche. 33. 

Onorando 1' altissimo poeta. 

1 Of temblance neither sorrowful nor glad.\ 

She nas to sober ne to glad. Chaucer^s Dream 

* 7%e monarch of suMimest sotur.] Homer. 

It appears from a passage in the Convito, that there was 
uu Laan translation of Homer in Dante*s time. *'Sappia 
clascnno, &c." p. 90. ** Every one should know, that noth' 
ing, harmonized by musical enchainment, can be transmuted 
Trom one tongue into another without breaking all its sweet- 
ness and harmony. And this is the reason why Homer has 
never been tamed firom Greek into Latin, as the other wri- 
ters we have of theirs.*' This sentence, I fear, may well be 
regarded as conclusive against the present undertaking. Yei 
would I willingly bespeak for it at least so much Indulgence 
as Politian claimed for himself, when in the Latin transla- 
tion, which he afterwards made of Homer, but which has 
since unfortunately perished, he ventured on certain liberties 
both of phraseology and metre, for which the nicer critics ot 
his time thought fit to call him to an account: "Ego vero 
tametsi rudis in primis non adeo tamen obtusi sum pectoris 
in versibus mazime faciundis, ut spatia ista morasque non 
sentiam. Vero cum mihi de Gneco pene ad verbum foront 
antiquissima interpretanda carmina, fateor afiectavi equidem 
at In verbis obsoletam vetustatem, sic in mensurft IpsA ef 
oumero gratam qoandam ut speravi novitatem." Rp. lib. I 
DaptistB Giiar<ao. 


That o'er the others like an eagle soars. 

When they together short discourse had held, 
They tum'd to me, with salutation kind 
Beckoning me ; at the which my master smiled : 
Nor was this all ; but greater honor still 
They gave me, for they made me of their tribe ; 
And I was sixth amid so learnM a band. 

Far as the luminous beacon on we passed. 
Speaking of matters, then befitting well 
To speak, now fitter left untold.' At foot 
Of a magnificent castle we arrived, 
Seven times with lofty walls begirt, and round 
Defended by a pleasant stream. O'er this 
As o'er dry land we pass'd. Next, through seven gate^ 
I with those sages enter'd, and we came 
Into a mead with lively verdure fresh. 

There dwelt a race, who slow their eyes around 
Majestically moved, and in their port 
Bore eminent authority : they spake 
Seldom, but all their words were tuneful sweet 

We to one side retired, into a place 
Open and bright and lofty, whence each cue 
Stood manifest to view. Incontinent, 
There on the green enameP of the plain 
Were shown me the great spirits, by whose sight 
I am exalted in my own esteem. 

Electra' there I saw accompanied 

1 FUUr /e/t untold.'] 

Che '1 tacere h bello, 
So our poet, in Canzone 14 : 

La vide in parte clie *1 tacere d bello. 

Ruccellai, Le Api, 789 : 

Ch* a dire d brutto ed a tacerlo ^ bello 

A.nd Bembo : 

Vie piu bello h 11 tacerle, che il favellame. 

Oli Jitol^ lib. 1. 

* Oreen enatMl] "Verde smalto." Dante here tites a 
netaphor that has since become very common in poetry. 

O'er the smooth enamell'd green. Miltony Areadea. 
" Enamellinff« and perhaps pictures in enamel, were com- 
mon in the middle ages, &.c/* IVarton^ Hist, of Eng. Poetrp, 
V. i. c. zUi. p. 376. " This art flonrished most at Limoges, ik 
France. So early as the year 1197, we have doas tabnias 
ficneas snperauratas de labore Limogiee. Chart, ann 1197 
apnd Ughelin. torn. vii. Ital. Sacr. p. 1274.** JVarton, Ibid. 
Additions to v. i. printed in vol. 11. Compare WaIpole*s 
Anecdotes of Painting in England, vo«. i. c. il. • 

* EUetra,] The daughter of Atlas, and mother o^ Darda- 
nas the founder of Troy. See Virg. ^n., 1. vili. 134, as re* 
fisned to by Dante in the treatise " De Monarchic.** lib. U 

118-1S9 HELL. Cami IV. 71 

By many, among whom Hector I knew, 
Anchuses' pious son, and with hawk's eye 
CfBsar all arm'd, and by Camilla there 
Pentheffllea. On the other side, 
Old king Latinus seated by his child 
Lavinia, and that Brutus I beheld 
Who Tarquin chased, Lucretia. Cato*8 wife 
Marcia, with Julia^ and Cornelia there ; 
And sole apart retired, the Soldan fierce.' 

Then when a little more I raised my brow, 
I spied the master of the sapieftt throng,' 
Seated amid the philosophic train. 

" Electra, scilicet, nata magni nomlnls regis Atlantis, ut de 
ambobus testimonium leddit poeta noster in octavo, ubi 
.£neas ad Eyandnuu sic ait, 

** Dardanos Iliaoe," &c. 

^ JtUia.l The danghter of Julius Caesar, and wife of Pompey. 

* The Soldan fierce.] Saladin, or Salaheddin, the rival of 
Richard Cksur-de-Lion. See D'Herbeiot, Bibl. Orient., the 
life of Saladin, by Bohao*edin Ebn Shedad, published by 
Albert Schultens, with a Latin translation, and Knolles's 
Hist of the Turks, p. 57 to 73. '* About this time (1193) 
died the great Sultan Saladin, the greatest terror of the 
Christians, who, mindfur of man's fragility and the vanity 
of WOTldly honors, commanded at the time of his death no 
solemnity to be used at his burial, but only his shirt, in man- 
ner of an ensisn, made fast unto the point of a lance, to be 
carried before his dead body as an ensign, a plain priest going 
before, and crying aloud unto the people In this sort, * Sala- 
din, Conqueror of the East, of all the greatness and riches 
he had in his life, carrieth not with him any thing more than 
his shirt.* A sight worthy so great a king, as wanted noth 
ing to his eternal commendation more than the true know- 
ledge of his salvation in Christ Jesus. He reigned about 
sixteen years with great honor.** He is introduced byPe 
trarch in the Triumph of Fame, c. ii. ; and by Boccaccio in 
the Decameron, 6. x. N. 9.- 

* Tike master of the sapient throng".] 

Maestro di color che sanno. 

Aiistotle. — ^Petrarch assigns the first place to Plato. Seo 
miimph of Fame, c. ill. 

Volsimi da man manca, e vidi Plato 
Che *n qoella schicra andb piu presso al segno 
A qnal aggiunge, a chi dal cielo ^ dato 

Aristotile poi pien d* alto ingegno. 

Psld, In his Morgante Maggiore, c. xvilL, says, 

Ta se* il maestro di color che sanno. 

The reverence in which the Stagirite was held by our 
Author, cannot be better shown than by a passage in hifl 
Convito, p. 142 : '* Che Aristotile sia degnissimo, &c.*' " Thai 
Aristotle is most worthy of trust and obedience, may be thus 
proved. Among the workmen or artificers of different arts 
and operations, which are in order to some final art or opera- 
tion, he, who is the artist or operator in that, ought chiefiv 


Him all admire, all pay lum revereoce due 
There Socrates and Plato both I mark'd 
Nearest to him in rank, Democritus 
Who sets the world at chance,' Diogenes, 
With Heraclitus, and Empedocles, 
And Anaxagoras, and Thales sage, 
Zeno, and Dioscorides well read 
In nature's secret lore. Orpheus I mari^M 
And Linus, Tully and moral Seneca, 
Euclid and Ptolemy, Hippocrates, 
Galenus, Avicen,^ and him who made 
That commentary vast, Averroea * 

to be. obeyed and trosted by the rest, as being the one who 
alone considers the ultimate end of all the other ends. Thus 
he, who exercises the occupation of a knight, ought to he 
obeyed by the sword-cutler, the bridle-maker, the armorer, 
and by all those trades which are in order to the occupation 
of a knight. And because all hnman operations respect a 
certain end, which is that of human life, to which man. In- 
asmuch as he is man, is ordained, the master or artist, who 
considers of and teaches us that, ought chiefly to be obeyed 
and trusted : now this is no other than Aristotle ; and he is 
therefore the most deserving of trust and obedience." 

1 - ■ ■■ Demoeritu*i 

Who sets the loorld at ehanee.\ 

Democritus, who maintained the world to have been formed 
by the fortuitous concourse of atoms. 

s Jlffieen.] Bee D'Herbelot, Bibl. Orient, article Sina. He 
died in 1050. Pulci here agaiii imitates our poet : 

Avicenna quel che il sentimento 

Intese di Aristotile e i segreti, 

Averrois che fece 11 gran comento. Jlfor^. Moff^ c. xvr. 

Chaucer, in the Prologue to the Canterbury Tales, makes 
the Doctour of Fhisike familiar with 



Sgnarda Avicenna mio con tre corone, 
Ch* egli fu Prence, e di scienza pieno, 
E util tanto all* umane persnne. 

lYezti, n Quadrir.t I. iv. cap. 9 

Fuit Avicenna vir summi ingenil, magnus PhilosophiUB, 
excellens medicus, et summus apud sues Theologus. Bebas 
tian Scheffer, Introd. in Artem Medlcam, p. 63, as quoted te 
the Historical Observations on the Qnadrireglo Ediz. 172S. 

■ Him who made 

^ That commentary ««(, Averroea.] 

II gran Platone, e I' altro che sta attentu 
Mirando il cielo, e sta a lui a lato 
Averrois, che lece il gran comento. 

Frezii. R Quadrir.j \, iv. cap. 9. 

Avenoes, called by the Arabians Roschd, translated and 
commented the works of Aristotle According to Tlrainsch) 
fStoria della Lett Ital.. t. v. 1, il. c. ii. sect. 4) he was the 

i4S-148. HELL, Canto V. 73 

Of all to speak at full were yain attempt ; 
For my wide theme so urges, that oft-times 
My words fall short of what hechanced. In two 
The six associates part. Another way 
My sage guide leads me, from that air serene, 
Into a climate ever vex'd with storms : 
And io a part I come, where no light shines 



Ccming into the second circle of Hell, Dante at the entrance 
beholds Minos the Infernal Jadge, by whom he is admou- 
ished to beware how he enters those regions. Here he wit- 
nesses the punishment of carnal sinners, who are tossed 
abont ceaselessly in the dark air by the most furious winds. 
Among these he meets with Francesca of Rimini, through 
pity at whose sad tale he falls fainting to the ground. 

From the first circle^ I descended thus 
r>own to the second, which, a lesser space 

source of modern philosophical impiety The critic quotes 
some passages from Petrarch (Senil, 1. v. ep. iii. et Oper., v. ii. 
pi 1143) to show how strongly such sentiments prevailed in 
4ie time of that poet, by whom they were held in horror and 
detestation. He adds, that this fanatic admirer of Aristotle 
translated his writings with that felicity which might be ex- 
pected from one who did not know a syllable of Greek, and 
who was therefore compelled to avail himself of the unfaith- 
All Arabic versions. D^Herbelot, on the other hand, informs 
ns, that "Averroes was the first who translated Aristotle 
from Greek into Arabic, before the Jews had made their 
translation ; and that we had for a long time no other text 
of Aristotle, except that of the Latin translation, which was 
made from this Arabic version of this great philosopher, 
(AveiToes,) who afterwards added to it a very ample com 
mentary, of which Thomas Aquinas, and the other scholastic 
writers, availed themselves, before the Greek originals ot 
Aristotle and his commentators were known to ns in Europe.* 
Aceording to D'Herbetot, he died in 1198; but Tirabosch. 
places that event about 1206. 

** Averroes," says Warton, " as the Asiatic schools decaye j 
by khe indolence of the Caliphs, was one of those philosopher j 
who adorned the Moorish schools erected in Africa and Spain 
lie was a professor in the University of Morocco He wrote 
a commentary on all Aristotle's works. He was styled the 
most Peripatetic of all the Arabian writers He was born at 
Cordova, of an ancient Arabic family." Mist. Eng. Poetry, 
vol. i. sect. xvii. p. 441. 

^ From the first eirde,'] Chiabrera's twenty-first sonnet i3 
on a psUnUng, by Cesare Corte, from this Canto. Mr. Fuseli, 
a much ^ircater name, has lately employed his wonder-work 
(ng pencil on the same subject. 


74 THE VISION 8-44. 

Embracing, so much more of giief conlauis, 

Provoking bitter moans. There Minos stand^i 

Gnnning with ghastly feature :' he, of all 

Who enter, strict examining the crimes, 

Gives sentence, and dismisses them beneatli. 

According as he foldeth him around : 

For when before him comes the ill-fated soul, 

It all confesses ; and that judge severe 

01 sins, considering what place in hell 

Suits the transgression, with his tail so oft 

Himself encircles, as degrees beneath 

He dooms it to descend. Before him stand 

Alway a numerous throng ; and in his turn 

Each one to judgment passing, speaks, and hears 

Uis fate, thence downward to his dwelling hurl'd. 

" O thou ! who to this residence of wo 
Approachest !" when he saw me coming, cried 
Minos, relinquishing his dread employ, 
" Look how thou enter here ; beware in whom 
Thou place thy trust ; let not the entrance broad 
Deceive thee to thy harm." To him my guide • 
" Wherefore exclaimest ? Hinder not his way 
By destiny appointed ; so His will'd. 
Where will and power are one. Ask thou no morn 

Now 'gin the rueful wailings to be heard. 
Now am I come where many a plaining voice 
Smites on mine ear. Into a place I came 
Where light was silent all. Bellowing there groan c 
A noise, as of a sea in tempest torn 
By warring winds. The stormy blast of hell 
With restless fury drives the spirits on, 
Whirled round and dash'd amain with sore annoy. 
When they arrive before the ruinous sweep, 
There shrieks are heard, there lamentations, moann, 
And blasphemies 'gainst the good Power in heavei^ 

I understood, that to this torment sad 
The carnal sinners are condemn'd, in whom 
Reason by lust is sway'd. As in large troops 
And multitudinous, when winter reigns, 
The starlings on then: wings are borne abroad ; 
Sc bears the tyrannous gust those evil souls. 
On this side and on that, above, below, 

GrtRm'i^ with ghattiy ftature.j Hence Milton : 


GrlnnM horrible a ghastly smile. 

P L., b. U. 84b 

fb-ea, HELL, Ciifio V. 75 

It driyes them : hope of rest to solace them 

Is none, nor e'en of milder pang. As cranes/ 

Chanting their dolorous notes, traverse the sky, 

Stretch'd out in long array ; so I beheld 

Spirits, who came loud wailing, hurried on 

By their dire doom. Then I : ** Instructor ! who 

Are these, by the black air so scourged ?" — " The finA 

'Mong those, of whom thou qucstion'st," he replied, 

** O'er many tongues was empress. She in vice 

Of luxury was so shame'iess, that she made 

Liking' be lawful by promulged decree, 

To clear the blame she had herself incurr'd 

This is Semiramis, of whom 'tis writ, 

That she succeeded Ninus her espoused ;' 

And held the land, which now the Soldan rules. 

The next in amorous fury slew herself. 

And to Sicheus' ashes broke her faith : 

Then follows Cleopatra, lustful queen." 

There mark'd I Helen, for whose sake so long 
The time was fraught with evil ; there the great 
Achilles, who with love fought to the end. 

1 Jis cranes.] This simile is imitated by Lorenzo de Me 
dici, in his Ambra, a poem, first published by Mr. Roscoe, iu 
the Appendix to his life of Lorenzo : 

Marking the tracts of air, the clamorous cranes 
Wheel their dae flight in varied ranks descried ; 
And each with outstretched neck his rank maintains, 
In marshaird order through th' ethereal void. 

Roseoe, v. i. c. v. p. 5257, 4to. edit. 
Ck>mpare Homer, II., iii. 3. Virgil, ^n., 1. x. 364, Oppiaa 
Halieut., lib. i. 630. Ruccellai, Le Apt, 942, and Dante*s Pur 
gatory, xxiv. G3. 
* Likiti£.\ His lustes were as law in his degree. 

OtaMeer^ Manke*s Tale, M'ero. 
B That she Jueeeeded JV\niu her espoused.] 

Che succedette a Nino e fu sua sposa. 

M Artaud, in his Histoire de Dante, p. 589, mentions a 
manuscript work called AttacanU's Quadragesimale de reditu 
peccHtoris ad Deum, in which the line is thus cited : 
Che su^er dette a Nino e fn sua sposa. 

"Who suckled Ninus, and was his wife.** 
This remarkable reading had been before noticed by Federicl 
Intorao ad alcune variant! nel testo della Divina Commedia* 
Ed. Milan. 1836. See the Biblioteca Italiana, tom, 82, p. 38S> 
It appears from the treatise De Monarchial, (1. ii.) that Dante 
derived his knowledge of Assyrian history from his favorita 
author Orosius, (I. i. c. iv.) who relates that Semiramis both 
succeeded Ninus through the artifice of personating her son, 
and that she committed incest with her son ; but as the name 
of her husband Ninus only is there recorded, and as other hi» 
KMlans call the son Ninias it is probable that the conratH 
'cading is right 

76 THE VISION 6iW9»j 

Paris I* saw, and Tristan ; aiid beside, 

A thousand more he show'd me, and bv name 

Pointed them out, whom love bereaved of life. 

When I had heard my sage instructor name 
Those dames and knights of antique days, o'erpoweiM 
By pity, well-nigh in amaze my mind 
Was lost ; and I began : " Bard ! willingly 
I would address those two together coming, 
Which seem so light before the wind." He thus : 
" Note thou, when nearer they to us approach. 
Then by that love which carries them along. 
Entreat ; and they will come." Soon as the wind 
Sway'd them towards us, I thus framed my speech 
" O wearied spirits ! come, and hold discourse 
With us, if by none else restrain'd." As doves 
By fond desire invited, on wide wings 
And firm, to their sweet nest returning home, 
Cleave the air, wafted by their will along ; 
Thus issued, from that troop where Dido ranks, 
They, through the ill air speeding : with such foroe 
My cry prevail'd, by strong affection urged. 

" O gracious creature and benign ! who go*st 
Visiting, through this element obscure,' 
Us, who the world with bloody stain imbrued ; 
If, for a friend, the King of all we own'd, 
Our prayer to him should for thy peace arise. 
Since thou hast pity on our evil plight. 
Of whatsoe'er to hear or to discourse 
It pleases thee, that will we hear, of that 
Freely with thee discourse, while e*er the wind, 
As now, is mute. The land,* that gave me birth, 
Is situate on the coast, where Po descends 
To rest in ocean with his sequent streams. 

" Love, that in gentle heart is quickly leaniM,* 

1 Element obscure ] " L*aer perao.'* Much is MLiU by tb« 
commentators concerning the exact sense of the word " perso. * 
It cannot be explained in clearer terms than those used by 
Dante himself in his Convito : " II perso 6 un colore misto tn 
parpureo e nero, ma vince 11 nero." p. 185. " It is a coloi 
mixed of purple and black, but the black prevails.*' The 
word recurs several times in this poem. Chaucer also uses 
It in the Prologue to the Canterbury Tales, Doctour of Phis 

In sanguin and in perse he clad was ?.lle. 

* The land,, Ravenna. 

* Lofse, that in gentle heart i$ quickly leam*d.\ 

Amor, ch* al cor gentll ratto s^apprendt- 
K line taken by Mariio, Adone, c. cxli. st. 351. 


100-114. HELL, CUnto V. 77 

Entangled him hj that fair form, from me 
Ta'en in such cruel Bort« as grieves me sliJl : 
Love, that denial takes from none beloved/ 
Caught me with pleasing him so passing wel^ 
That, as thoa seest, he yet doserts me not 
Love brought us to one death : Calna' waits 
The soul, who spilt our life." Such were their vcfis 
At hearing which, downward I bent my looks. 
And held them there so long, that the bard criet'. : 
*< What art thou pondering?" I m answer thus 
" Alas ! by what sweet thoughts, what fond desi^'e 
Must they at length to that ill pass have reach'd \" 

Then turning, I to then^ my speech address'd. 
And thus began : « Francesca !* your sad fate 
Itlven to tears my grief and pity moves. 

That the reader of the original may not be misled as to the 
fcxact sense of the word " s*apprende/' vhich I have rendered 
^ is leam'd,** it may be right to apprize him that it signifies " is 
caught,*' and that it is a metaphor Aroni a thing taking fire. 
Thus it is used by Gnido Guixdcelli, whom indeed our poet 
seems here to have had in view : 

Fuoco d* Amore in gentii cor s'apivende, 
Come vertnte in pietra preziosa. 

Sonetti^ d'C, Hi diverti AnticH Toaeani. Edit- 
Oiuati, 1527, 1. ix. p. 107 

The fire of love in gentle heart is eanght, 
As virtue hi the precious stone. 

1 LovCi that denial taJus from none hdoved.\ 

Amor, ch* a null* amato amar perdona. 
S9 Boccaccio, in his Filocopo, 1. 1. 

Amore mai non perdonb Tamore a nuUo amato 

And Pulci, in the Morgante Mac^lore, c. iv. 
£ perchd amor mal volontier perdona, 
Che non sia al fin sempre amato chi ama. 

in^oed, many of-the Italian poets have repeated this verse. 

3 Cuna.J The place to which murderers are doomed. 

s Francesca.] Francesca, daughter of Guide da Polenta 
lord of Ravenna, was given by her fother in mirriage to 
Lanciotto, son of Malatesta, lord of Rimini, a man of extra* 
ordinary courage, but deformed in his person. His brother 
Paolo, who unhappily possessed those graces which the 
husband of Francesca wanted, engaged her afiections ; and 
being taken in adultery, they were both put to death by 
the enraged Lanciotto. See notes to Canto xxvii. v. 38 and 
43. Troya relates, that they were buried together ; and that 
three centuries after, thb bodies were found at Rimini, 
V hither they had been removed fipom Pesaro, with the silken 
garments yet fi«sh. Veltro Allegorico di Dante. Ediz. 1896 
p. 33. 

The whole; of this passage is alluded to by Petrarch, in bi» 
TVhnnpb of Lovo, ۥ Ui. : 

78 THE VISION 115-1& 

But tell me ; in the time of your sweet sighs, 
By what, and how Love granted, that ye knew 
Your yet uncertain wishes?" She replied : 
" No greater grief than to remember days 
Of joy, when misery is at hand.^ That kens 
Thy leam'd instructor. Yet so eagerly 
If thou art bent to know the primal root. 
From whence oar love gat being, I will do 
A^ one, who weeps and tells his tale. One day. 
For our delight we read of Lancelot,' 
How him love thruird. Alone we were, and no 
Suspicion near us. Oft-times by that reading 
Our eyes were drawn together, and the hue 
Fled from our alter'd cheek. But at one point* 
Alone we fell. When of that smile we read, 

Ecco quel che le carte empion di so^i 
Lancilotto Tristano e gli a^'tri errann : 
Onde convien che *1 vnlgo errante ugogni ; 
Vedi Ginevra, Isotta e I'altre amanti ; 
E la coppia d*Arimino che* nsieme 
Vanno facendo dolorosi pianti. 

Mr. Leigh Hunt has expanded the present episode into i 
oeautiful poem, in his "Story of Rimini." 

* JV*o ^eater grief than to remember days 
Of joy ^ token misery t> at hand.] 

Imitated by Chaucer : 

For of Fortunis sharp adversite 
The worste kind of infortune is this, 
A man to have been in prosperite. 
And it remembir when it possid is. 

Troilus and Crcseide, b. iii 
By Marino : 

Che non ha doglia il misero maggiore, 
Che ricordar la gioia entro il dolore. 

JldonCy c. xiv. st. lOf 
And by Fortignerra: 

Rimemhrare il ben perduto 

Fa piu meschino lo presente stato. 

RicciardelUf, c. xi St. 83 

1 he original, perhaps, was in BoStinif de Consol. Philosoph 
" In omni adversitate fortune infelicisslmnm genus est infor- 
sinii Aiisse felicem et non esse.** 1. % pr. 4. 

Boutins, and Cicero de Aroicitift, were the two first books 
liat engaged the attention of Dante, as he himself teUs us in 
the Convito, p. 68. 

8 Lancelot.] One of the Knights of the Round Table, and 
the lover of Glnevra, or Guinever, celebrated in romance. 
The incident alluded to seems to have made a strong impres- 
bion on the imagination of Dante, who introduces it again, In 
'Jie Paradise, Canto xvi. 

' .At one point.] 

Questo quel punto fu, che sol mi vinse. 

T<wso. Jl TVrriMumJtf a. i. «. 9 

laikias. HELL, Canix) VL 70 

The wished smile, bo rapturously kiai'd 
By one so deep in love, then he, who ne'er 
From me shall separate, at once my lips 
All trembling kissM. The book and writer buth 
Were love's purveyors. In its leaves that day 
We read no more."* While thus one spirit spake, 
The other wail'd so sorely, that heart-struck 
I, through compassion fainting, seem'd not far 
From death, and like a corse fell to the ground.' 



On his recovery-, the Poet finds himself in the third circle^ 
where the glattonons are pnnished. Their torment is, to 
lie in the mire, nnder a continual and heavy storm of hail, 
snow, and discolored water ; Cerberus meanwhile barking 
over them with his threefold throat, and rending them 
piecemeal. One of these, who on earth was named Clacco, 
foretells the divisions with which Florence is about to be 
distracted. Dante proposes a question to his guide, who 
solves it ; and they proceed towards the fourth circle. 

My sense reviving,* that erewhile had droop'd 
With pity for the kmdred shades, whence grief 
Overcame me wholly, straight around I see 
New torments, new tormented souls, which way 
Soe'er I move, or turn, or bend my sight. 
In the third circle I arrive, of showers 
Ceaseless, accursed, heavy and cold, unchanged 
For ever, both in kind and in degree. 
Large hail, discolor'd water, sleety flaw 

* — — — — In its leaves that day 

We reaa no more.] Nothing can exceed the delicacj' with 
which Francesca in these words intimates her guilt. 

* And like a corse fell to the ground.] 

E caddl, come corpo morto cade. 
So Pnlci : 

E cadde come morto in terra cade. 

MorgaMU Maggiorey c zziL 
And Ariosto : 

E cada, come corpo morto cade. 

Ori. ^r., c. ii. St. 55. 

" And when I saw him, I fell at his feet as dead.** Revu 
Btlon, i. 17. 

* M§ sense reniving.] 

AI tomar defla mente, che si chiuse, 
Dinanzi alia pieti de* duo cognatL 

Demi has mane a sportive application of these linos. In lili 
tn (nr .. lib. iii. c. viil sL 1. 

80 THE VISION. lo-u 

Through the dun niidnight air stream'd down amaiu 
Stank all the land whereon that tempest fell. 

Cerberus, cruel monster, fierce and strange, 
Through his wide threefold throat, barks as a dog 
Over £e multitude inmiersed beneath. 
His eyes glare crimson, black his unctuous beard, 
His belly large, and claw'd the hands, with which 
He teara the spirits, fLays them, and their limbs 
Piecemeal disparts. Howling there spread, as cui 8, 
Under the rainy deluge, with one side 
The other screening, oft they roll them round, 
A wretched, godless crew. When that great worm 
Descried us, savage Cerberus, he oped 
His jaws, and the fangs show'd us ; not a limb 
Of him but trembled. Then my guide, his pahns 
Expanding on the ground, thence fill'd with earth 
Raised them, and cast it in his ravenous maw 
E'en as a dog, that yelling bays for food 
His keeper, when the morsel comes, lets fall 
His fury, bent alone with eager haste 
To swallow it ; so dropp'd the loathsome cheekb 
Of demon Cerberus, who thundering stuns 
The spirits, that they for deafness wish in vain. 

We, o'er the shades thrown prostrate by the brunt 
Of the heavy tempest passing, set our feet 
Upon their emptiness, that substance seem'd. 

They all along the earth extended lay. 
Save one, that sudden raised himself to sit. 
Soon as that way he saw us pass. " O thou !" 
He cried, ** who through the infernal shades art led, 
Own, if again thou know'st me. Thou wast framed 
Or e'er my frame was broken." I replied : 
" The anguish thcu endurest perchance so takr s 
Thy form from my remembrance, that it seems 
As if I saw thee never But inform 

1 ThJt great vorm.] Joita — ^infbnmm vennls erat Infinite: 
tuagnitudmls lisatus maximA catena. Alberici Visio, $ 
In Canto xxidv., Lucifer is called 

Th0 abhorred worm, that boreth through the world 

This is imitated by Aricnto, Orl. Fur., c. xlvl. st. 76. 

Bhakspeare, Milton, and Cowper, who well underbtood that 
ihe most common words aie often the most impressive, have 
nsed the synonymous tem\ in oar language with the best 
Blfrct : as Pindar has done in Greek : 

Airi Tadyirot) ftiv Adxaivav 
itrl Btipvl K6wa rpixtiv wxtvtSrarov ipwtrdv* 

Heynt's Pindar. FYaffrm Fvinie, il. S; /» Hiersm 

4^73. HELL, Canto VI. 81 

Me who thoa art, that in a place so sad 
Art set, and in such torment, that although 
Other be greater, none disgusteth more." 
He thus in answer to my words rejom'd : 
' Thy city, heap'd with envy to the brim, 
Aye, that the measure overflows its boundsi 
Held me in brighter days. Ye citizens 
Were wont to name me Ciacco.' For the siu 
Of gluttony, damned vice, beneath this rain. 
E'en as thou seest, I with fatigue am worn : 
Nor I sole sjHht in this wo : all these 
Have by like crime incurr'd like punishment/' 

No more he said, and I my speech resumed * 
** Ciacco ! thy dire affliction grieves me much. 
Even to tears. But tell me, if thou know'st. 
What shall at length befall the citizens 
Of the divided city f whether any 
Just one inhabit there : and tell the cause. 
Whence jarring Discord hath assail'd it thus.*' 

He then : " After long striving they will come 
To blood ; and the wild party from the woods' 
Will chase the other* with much injury forth. 
Then it behooves that this must fall^ within 
Three solar circles f and the other rise 
By borrowed force of one, who under shore 
Now rests.^ It shall a long space hold aloof 
Its forehead, keeping under heavy weight 
The other oppressed, indignant at the load, 
And grieving sore. The just are two in number,* 

1 Ciacco.] So called fh)in his inordinate appetite ; Ciaceo, 
in Italian, signifying a pig. The real name of this glutton 
has not lieen transmitted to us. He is introdnced in Boccac- 
cio^s Decameron, Giom. ix. Nov. 8. 

t The divided city.\ The city of Florence, divided in :9 the 
Bianehi and Neri /actions. 

* 7'Ve vild ptutufrom the wooda.] So called, because U was 
headed by Veri de' Cerchi, whose family had lately come 
into the city from Acone, and the woody country of the Val 
di Nievole. 

* The other.] The opposite party of the Neri, at the hea j 
of which was Corso Donati. 

» Thi* must fall.] The Bianehi. 

" Three solar circles.] Three years. 

' OfonSi toho under shore 

Jfme rests.] 

'.Tharles of Valois, by whose means the Neri were replaced 

' TTujuet are two in number.] Who these two were, the 
c^immentators are not agreed. Some understand them to be 
Oante himself and his friend Guide Cavalcanti. But thl« 

83 THE VISION. 74r« 

But they neglected. Avarice, env)', pride,* 

Tliree fatal sparks, have set the hearts of all 

Ou fire." Here ceased the lamentable sound ; 

And I continued thus : " Still would I learn 

More from thee, farther parley still entreat 

Of Farinata and Tegghiaio^ say. 

They who so well deserved ; of Giacopo,' 

Arrigo, Mosca,* and the rest, who bent 

Their minds on working good. Oh ! tfeU me whepe 

They bide, and to their knowledge let me come. 

For I am press'd with keen desire to hear 

If heaven's sweet cup, or poisonous drug of hell, 

Be to their lip aasign*d." He answer'd straight : 

" These are yet blacker spirits. Various crimes 

Have sunk them deeper in the dark abyss. 

If thou so far descendest, thou mayst see them 

But to the pleasant world, when thou retum'st. 

Of me make mention, I entreat thee, there. 

No more I tell thee, answer thee no more." 

This said, his fixed eyes he tum'd askance, 
A little eyed me, then bent down his head. 
And 'midst his blind companions with it fell. 

When thus my guide : " No more his bed he leavesi 

would argue a presumption which our Poet himself else- 
where contradicts ; for, in the Purgatory, he owns his con- 
sciousness of not being exempted from one at least of '^the 
three fatal sparks, which had set the hearts of all on fire.'* 
Bee Canto xiii. 126. Others refer the encomium to Barduccio 
and Giovanni Vespignano, adducing the following passage 
from Villanl in support of their oi^nion : " In the year 1^1 
died in Florence two just and good men, of holy life and con- 
versation, and bountiful in almsgiving, although laymen. 
The one was named Barduccio, and was buried in S. Spirito, 
in the place of the Frati Romltanl : the other, named Gio- 
vanni da Vespignano, was buried in S. Pietro Magglore. And 
by each, God showed open miracles, in healing the sick and 
lunatic after divers manners; and for each there waa or 
dained a solemn funeral, and many images of wax set up in 
disehai^e of vows that had been made.*' G. Villani, lib. z 
cap. 179. 
* Avarice^ envy, pride.l 

Tnvidia, superbla ed avarizia 
Vedea moltiplicar tra micl figlinoli. 

Fazio degli Uherti^ Dittamondo, lib. i. cap. xi\x. 

9 Of Fhriruita and Teff£rhiaio.] See Canto x. and Notes, and 
Canto xvi. and Notes. 

* Oiaeopo.] Glacopo Rusticuccl. See Canto xvi. and Notes. 

* Atrigo, Motea.] Of Arrigo, who is said by the commenta« 
ion to have been of the noble family of the Flfanti, no men- 
Qon afterwards occurs. Mosca degli Uberti, or do* Lambertl 
m introduced in Canto xzviii. 

^7-1] 7 HELL, Canto VII 83 

Ere the last angel-trumpet blow. The Pt wer 
Adverse to these shall then in glory come, 
Each one forthwith to his sad tomb repair, 
Resume^ his fleshly vesture and his form. 
And hear the eternal doom re-echoing rend 
The vault" So pass'd we through that mi2:tur3 foul 
Of spirits and rain, with tardy steps ; meanwhile 
Touching," though slightly, on the life to come. 
For thus I question'd : " Shall these tortures, sir ! 
When the great sentence passes, be increased. 
Or .nitigated, or as now severe ?" 

He then : " Consult thy knowledge ;' that decides^ 
That, as each thing to more perfection grows, 
It feels more sensibly both good and pain. 
Though ne'er to true perfection may arrive 
This race accursed, yet nearer then, than now. 
They shall approach it." Compassing that patli, 
Circuitous we joumeyM ; and discourse. 
Much more than I relate, between us pass'd : 
Till at the point, whence the steps led below, 
Arrived, there Plutus, the great foe, we found 

<:;anto vil 


la the present Canto, Dante describes his descent into the 
fourth circle, at the beginning of which he sees Piutas sta- 
tioned. Here one like doom awaits the prodigal and the 
avaricions; which is, to meet in direfal conflict, rolling 
great weights against each other with mutual upbraidings. 
From hence Virgil takes occasion to show how vain the 
goods that are committed into the chaise of Fortune ; and 
this moves our author to inquire what being that Fortune 
is, of whom he speaks : which question being resolved, they 
go down into the fifth circle, where they And the wrathful 
and gloomy tormented in the Stygian lake. Having made 
a compass round great part of this lake, they come at last to 
the base of a lofty tower. 

> Resume.] Imitated by Frezzi: 

AUor ripiglieran la came e Tossa ; 
Li rei oseuri, o i bnon con splendor! 
Per la virtu della divina possa. 

11 Quodr., lib Iv. cap. zv 

' Touching.] Conversing, though in a slight and superficial 
Tutnner, on the life to come. 

* Consult thy knotoledge.] We are referred to the following 
lassage in St. Augustin : — '* Cum fiet rcsurrectio ctumis, et bo> 
loruni gandia et malorum tormenta majora emnt** — ** At the 
■esurrection of the flesh, both the happiness of the good and 
lie torments of tho wicked will be increased." 

M6 THE VISION. 55h8fc 

And to all knowledge indiscernible. 
For ever they shall meet in this rude shock . 
These from the tomb with clenched grasp shall riwN. 
Those with close^shayen locks. That ill they gave 
And ill they kept, hath of the beauteous world * 
Deprived, and set them at this strife, which needs 
No labor'd phrase of mine to set it off. 
Now mayst thou see, my son ! how brief, how \*nin 
The goods committed into Fortune's hands, 
For which the human race keep such a coil I 
Not all the gold' that is beneath the moon, 
Or ever hath been, of these toil-worn souls 
Might purchase rest for one." I thus rejoined * 
" My guide ! of thee this also would I learn ; 
This Fortune, that thou speak'st of, what it is. 
Whose talons grasp the blessings of the world.'* 
He thus : ** O beings blind ! what ignorance 
Besets you ! Now my judgment hear and mark 
He, whose transcendent wisdom^ passes all, 
The heavens creating, gave them ruling powers 
To guide them ; so that each part" shines to each. 
Their light in equal distribution pour'd. 
By similar appointment he ordain'd. 
Over the world's bright images to rule, 
Superintendence of a guiding hand 
And general minister,^ which, at due time, 
May change the empty vantages of life 
From race to race, from one to other's blood. 
Beyond prevention of man's wisest care : 
V/herefore one nation rises into sway. 
Another languishes, e'en as her will * 
Decrees, from us conceal'd, as in the grass 
The serpent train. Against her naught avails 
Vour utmost wisdom. She with foresight plans, 

1 J^ot all the gold.] Tutto roro ch* h sotto la lona 
For all the gode under the colde mone. 

CAaiccer, Legende of HypenMtestrZm 

* He, whose transcendent wi»dom.\ Compare Frezzl: 

Dio d prime prince in Qgni parte 

Sempre e di tutto, &c. 

// Quadrir.i lib. li. cap. it. 

s Eaehpart.\ Each hemisphere ofthe heavens shines npori 
Ihat hemisphere of the earth which is placed under it 

* General ninister.] Lombardl cites an apposite pa&sa^ 
nrom Augustin, De Civltate Dei, lib. v. : — " Nos eas cansas, 
;)Uffi dicuntur fortuitee (unde etiam fortuna nomen acceplt 
ion dicimus nullas, sed latentes, easque tribulmns, vel veil 
Hgi, vel quornnilibet spirttuuni volnntati." 

W-in. HELL, Canto VII. 87 

Judges, and carries on her reign, as theirs 

The other powers divine. Her changes know 

None intermission : by necessity' 

She is made swift, so frequent come who claim 

Succession in her favors. This is she, 

So execrated e'en by those whose debt 

To her is rather praise : they wrongfully 

With blame requite her, and with evil word ; 

But she is blessed, and for that recks not : 

Amidst the other primal beings glad. 

Rolls on her sphere, and in her bliss exults. 

Now on our way pass we, to heavier wo 

Descending : for each star' is falling now. 

That momited at our entrance, and forbids 

Too long our tarrying.'' We the circle crossed 

To the next steep, arriving at a well, 

Thitt boiling pours itself down to a foes 

Sluiced from its source. Far murkier was the wavs 

Than sablest grain : and we in company 

Of the inky waters, journeying by their side, 

Enter'd, though by a different track,' beneath. 

Into a lake, the Stygian named, expands 

The dismal stream, when it hath reached the foot 

Of the grdy withered cli£&. Intent I stood 

To gaze, and in the marish sunk descried 

A miry tribe, all naked, and with looks 

Betokening rage. They with their hands alone 

Struck not, but with the head, the breast, the feet. 

Cutting each other piecemeal with their fangs. 

1 By 7teeessity.\ This sentiment called forth the reprehieii 
sion of Francesco Stabili, commonly called Cecco d*Ascoli 
bx his Acerba, lib. 1. c. i. 

In cib peccasti, O Fiorentin poeta, 
Ponendo che 11 ben della forrnna 
Necessitati sieno con lor metA. 
Non ^ fortana, cai ragion non Ainca, 
Or pensa Dante, se prova nessuno 
81 pii6 piu fare che qnesta convinca. 

Herein, O bard of Florence, didst thou err, 
Laying it down that fortnne*8 largesses 
Are fated to their goal. Fortune is none, 
That reason cannot conquer. Mark thon, Dante, 
If any argument may gainsay this. 

s Each star.} So Boccaccio : " Giu ognl stella a cacer co 
slncib, che salia " Dec. 6. 3, at the end. 

s ^ different traek.\ Una via diversa. Some understand 
ihis "a strange path;" as the word is used in the prece- 
ding Canto; ^'fiera crudcle e diversa,** ** monster fierce and 
strange :** and in the Vila Nuova, " visi diversl ed orribili u 
redere " ** vl'sages strange and horrible to sea." 


" Ah rae .' O Satan ! Satan I"* loud exclaim'd 
Plutus, in accent hoarso of wild alarm : 
And the kind sage, whom no event surprised, 
To comfort me thus spake : " Let not thy fear 
Harm thee, for power in him, be sure, is none 
To hinder down this rock thy safe descent." 
Then to that swoln lip turning, " Peace !" he cried, 
" Curst wolf ! thy fury inward on thyself [found. 
Prey, and consume thee I Through the dark pro- 
Not without cause, he passes. So 'tis will'd 
On high, there where the ^eat Archangel pour'd 
Heaven's vengeance on the first adulterer proud."* 

As sails, full spread and bellying with the whid. 
Drop suddenly collapsed, if the mast split ; 
So to the ground down droppM the cruel fiend. 

Thus we, descending to the fourth steep ledge, 
Gain'd on the dismal shore, that all the wo 
Hems in of all the universe. Ah me ! 
Almighty Justice ! in what store thou heap'st* 
New pains, new troubles, as I here beheld. 

^ Ah met O Satan ! Satan /J 

Pape Satan, Pape Satan, aleppfe. 

Pope is said by the commentators to bo the same as th 
Latin word papee! " strange 1" Of aleppe. Xhey do not give 
more satisfactory account. 

See the Life of Ben venuto Cellini, translated byDr.Nageni 
V. ii. b. iti. c. vii. p. 113, where he mentions *' having hean 
the words Paix, paix, Satan I alleZy paix I in the courts of jus 
tice at Paris. I recollected what Danto said, when he with 
his master Virgil entered the gates of hell : for Dante, and 
Giotto the painter, were together in France, and visited Paris 
with particular attention, where the court of justice may be 
considered as hell. Hence it is that Dante, who was like- 
wise perfect master of the French, made use of that expres- 
sion ; and I have often been surprised that it was never un 
derstood in that sense.*' 

« The first adulterer proud.] Satan. The word "fornica- 
tion," or " adultery," " strupo," is here used for a revolt of 
the affections from God, according to the sense in which it Is 
often applied in Scripture. But Monti, following GrassiS 
" Essay on Synonymes," supposes " strupo" to mean " troop ;" 
the word " strup" being still used in the Piemontese dialect 
for "a flock of sheep," and answering to ''troupeau" in 
French. In that case. " superbo strupo" would signify " the 
'jroop of rebel angels who sinned through pride." 

> In what store thou heap^st.] Some understand " chi stipa*' 
n mean either *' who can imagine," or " who can describe 
}he tom<ents," 6lc. I have followed Landino, whose words, 
(hough very plain, seem to have been mistaken by Iiombar- 
i\: "Chi stipa, chi accuniula, ed insieme raccoglie; quasi 
lira, lu giustizla aduni tanti supplicil." 

Zl-^A HELL, Canto VIL ^ 

Wherefore doth fault of ours bring us to this ? 

E'eu as a billow,' on Charybdis rising, 
Against encountered billow dashing breaks ; 
Such is the dance this wretched race must lead, 
Whom more than elsewhere numerous here I found 
From one side and the other, with loud voice, 
Both roU'd on weights, by main force of their breasts^ 
Then smote together, and each one forthwith 
RoU'd them back voluble, turning again ; 
Exclauning these, " Why boldest thou so fast ?" 
Those answering, " And why castest thou away ?" 
So, still repeating their despiteful song. 
They to the opposite point, on either hand, 
Traversed the horrid circle ; then arrived. 
Both tum'd them round, and through the middle space 
Conflictmg met again. At sight whereof 
[, stung with grief, thus spake : " O say, my guide ! 
What race is this. Were these, whose heads are shom^ 
On our left hand, all separate to the church V* 

He straight replied : " In their first life, these all 
(n mind were so distorted, that they made. 
According to due measure, of their wealth 
No use. This clearly from their words collect. 
Which they howl forth, at each extremity 
Arriving of the circle, where their crime 
Contrary in kind disparts them. To the church 
Were separate those, that with no hairy cowls 
Are crown*d, both Popes and Cardinals,' o*er whom 
Avarice dominion absolute maintains." 

I then : " 'Mid such as these some needs must be, 
Whom I shall recognise, that with the blot 
Of these foul -sins were stain'd." He answering thus : 
" Vain thought conceivest thou. That ignoble life. 
Which made them vile before, now makes them dark. 

> E'en as a bUlow.\ 

As when two billows in the Irish sowndes, 
Forcibly driven with contrarie tides, 
Do meet together, each abaclc rebounds 
With roaring rage, and dashing on all sides, 
That filleth all the sea with foam, divides 
The doubtful current into divers wayes. 

Spenser, F. Q., b. iv. c. i. st. 42. 

■ Popes and Cardinals. \ Ariosto having personified Avo 
1 3e ns a strange and hideous monster, says of her : 

Peggio facea nella Romana corte, 
Che v^avea ncclsi Cardinal! e Papl. 

Orl. Fur., c. xxvl. st. 32 

Wone did she in the Court of Rome, for there 
BLe had sluin Popes and Cardinals. 



Thuu \yast conceived.^ He in the world ^las one 

For arrogance noted : to his memory 

Ho virtue lends its lustre ; even so 

Here is his shadow furious. There above, 

How many now hold themselves mighty kings. 

Who here like swine shall wallow in the mire, 

£<eaving behind them horrible dispraise." 

I then : " M-aster ! him fain would I beh;>ld 
Whelm'd in these dregs, before we quit the lakn " 

He thus : " Or ever to thy view the shore 
Be offer'd, satisfied shall be that wish, 
Which well deserves completion." Scarce his wordf 
Were ended, when I saw the miry tribes 
Set on him with such violence, that yet 
For that render I thanks to God, and praise 
" To Filippo Argenti !"* cried they aU : 
And on himself the moody Florentine 
Tum'd his avenging fangs. Him here we left, 
Nor speak I of him more. But on mine ear 
Sudden a sound of lamentation smote. 
Whereat mine eye unbarr'd I sent abroad. 

And thus the good instructor : ** Now, my son, 
Draws near the city, that of Dis is named,' 
With its grave denizens, a mighty throng." 

I thus : " The minarets already, Sir ! 
There, certes, in the valley I descry, 
Gleaming vermilion, as if they from fire 
Had issued." He replied : " Eternal fire. 
That inward bums, shows them with ruddy flamo 
Illumed ; as in this nether hell thou seest" 

We came within the fosses deep, that moat 
This region comfortless. The walls appeared 
As they were framed of iron. We had made 
Wide circuit, ere a place we reach'd, where loud 
The mariner cried vehement : " Go forth : 
The entrance is here." Upon the gates I spied 

In whom 

Thou toast conceived.} " Che *n te sMncinse." Several of 
Ihe commentators have stombled at this word, which is the 
Baine as ** enceinte** in French, and " inciens*' in Latin. For 
viany instances in which it is thus used, see the notes on 
Boccaccio*s Decameron, p. 101, m the Ginnti edition, 1573. 

> Filippo Argenti.] Boccaccio tells us, ** he was a man re 
marlcable for the large proportions and extraordinary vigor ol 
his bodily frame, and the extreme waywardness and iraMibii- 
ky of his temper.** Decam., g. ix. n. 8. 

* T%e eitft that of Dit it named.] So Ariosto. Oil. Far., c. 
tl. St 32 : Fatto era nn stagno piu sicuro e bmtto, 

Dl quel cne cinge la citt& di Dite. * 

•^109. HELL, Canto VIH. gj 

More than a thousand, who of old from heavun 
Were shower'd.* With ireful gestures, "Who is 
this," [throngh 

They cried, "that, without death first felt, gotm 
The regions of the dead?" My sapient guide 
Made dgn that he for secret parley wish'd ; 
Whereat their angry scorn abating, thus 
They spake : " Come thou alone ; and let him go. 
Who hath so hardily enter'd this realm. 
Alone return he by his witless way ; 
If well he know it, let him proire. For thee, 
Here shalt thou tarry, who throngh clime so dark 
Hast been his escort." Now bethink thee, reader ! 
What cheer was mine at sound of those curst words 
I did belieye I never should return. 

" O my loved guide ! who more than seven timee^ 
Security hast rendered me, and drawn 
From peril deep, whereto I stood exposed, 
Desert me not," I cried, " in this extreme. 
And, if our onward going be denied, 
Together trace we back our steps with speed." 

My liege, who thither had conducted me. 
Replied ; " Fear not : for of our passage none 
Hath power to disappoint us, by such high 
Authority permitted. But do thou 
Expect me here ; meanwhile, thy wearied spirit 
Comfort, and feed with kindly hope, assured 
[ will not leave thee in this lower world." 

This said, departs the sire benevolent, 
And quits me. Hesitating I remain 
At war, Hwixt will and will not,' in my thoughts. 

f¥om heaven 

Wert skower'd.] Da del piovnti. 
Thus Frezzi : 

Li maladetti piovnti da clelo. 

II Qvad^ lib. iv. cap. 4 
And Pnlcif in the passage cited in the note to C. zxi. 117. 

* Seven Umes.] The commentators, says Yentori, perplex 
themselves with the inquiry, what seven perils these were 
from which Dante had been delivered by Virgil.. Reckoning 
the beasts in the first Canto as one of them, and adding Cha 
ron, Bfinos, Cerberos, Flatns, Phlegyas, and Filippo Argenti, 
as so many others, we shall have Uie nnmber ; and if this be 
sot satisfactory, we may suppose a determinate to have beeii 
yat f jr an indeterminate number. 
3 M tear Hwixt will and will not,] 

Che si, e nb nel capo mi tenzona. 
Tfads onr Poet in his eighth Canzone : 

Ch' 11 si, e*l nb tntntto in vostra auuno 

as THE VISION. UO-ltt 

I could not hear what terms ho ofi'er'd them, 
But they conferred not long, for all at once 
Pellmell* rush'd back withm. Closed were the gates, 
By those our adversaries, on the breast 
Of my Uege lord : excluded, he returned 
To me with tardy steps. Upon the ground 
His eyes were bent, and from his brow erased 
All confidence, while thus in sighs he spake : 
** Who hath denied me these abodes of wo?" 
Then thus to mo ; " That I am anger'd, think 
No ground of terror : in this trial I 
Shall vanquish, use what arts they may within 
For hind'rance. This their insolence, not new..' 
Erewhile at gate less secret they displayed, 
Which still is without bolt ; upon its arch 
Thou saw'st the deadly scroll : and even now, 
On this side of its entrance, down the steep, 
Passing the circles, unescorted, comes 
One whose strong might can open us this land '* 



M\eT some hlnderanees, and having seen the hellish Auie« 
and other monsters, the Poet, by the help of an angel, 
enters the city of Dis, wherein he discovers that the here- 
tics are punished in tombs burning with intense fire : antf 
he, together with Virgil, passes onward between the sep 
ulchres and the walls of the city. 

The hue,* which coward dread on my pale cheekd 
Imprinted when I saw my guide turn back, 
Chased that from his which newly they had worn. 

And Boccaccio, Ninf. Fiesol., st. 233: 

U si e il nb nel capo gli contende. 

The words I have adopted as a translation, are S^ak 
speare's. Measure for Measure, a. ii. s. 1. 

» PeUmdLl Apruova. "Certatim." "Al'envi." I had 
before translated, '*To trial ;" and have to thank Mr. Corlyle 
for detecting the error. 

s This theft ifuiUeneey not mw.] Virgil assures oar Poet, 
that these evil spirits had formerly shown the same insolence 
when our Saviour descended into hell. They attempted to 
prevent him from entering at the gate, over which Daate had 
read the fatal inscription. **That gate which,*' says the 
Roman poet, **an angel had just passed, by whose aid we 
shall overcome this oppcnition, and gain admittance into the 

s The Ak0.] Virgil, perceiving that Dante was pjde wltb 
fear, restrained those outward tokens of displeasure which 
hi* own countenance had betrayed. 

4-38 HELL, Canto IX. OS 

And inwardly restrain'd it. He, as one 
Who listens, stood attentive : for his eye 
Not far could lead him through the sable air, 
And the thick-gathering cloud. " It yet behoovm 
We win this fight ;" thus he began : " if not. 
Such aid to us is offer'd. — Oh ! how long 
Me seems it, ere the promised help arrive " 

I noted, how the sequel of his words 
Cbaked their beginning ; for the last he spake 
Agreed not with the first. But not the less 
My fear was at liis saying ; sith I drew 
To import worse, perchance, than that he held, 
His mutilated speech. ** Doth ever any 
Into this rueful concave's extreme depth 
Descend, out of the first degree, whose pain 
Is deprivation merely of sweet hope ?" 

Thus I inquiring. *' Rarely," he replied, 
** It chances, that among us any makes 
This journey, which I wend. Erewhile, 'tis truoi 
Once came I here beneath, conjured by fell 
Erictho,^ sorceress, who compell'd the shades 
Back to their bodies. No long space my flesh 
Was naked of me,' when within these walls 
She made me enter, to draw forth a spirit 
From out of Judas' circle. Lowest place 
Is that of all, obscurest, and removed 
Farthest from heaven's all-circling orb. The road 
Full well I know : thou therefore rest secure. 
That lake, the noisome stench exhaling, round 
The city of grief encompasses, which now 
We may not enter without rage." Yet more 
He added : but I hold it not in mind. 
For that mine eye toward the bfty tower 
Hod drawn me wholly, to its burning top , 
Where, in an instant, I beheld uprisen 

1 EriethiK] Erictho, a Thessalian sorceress, according to 
Liiean, Pharsal., 1. vi., was employed by Sextus, son of Pom- 
pey the Great, to co^jare up a spirit, who should inform him 
of the issae of the civil wars between his fattier and Caesar. 

* — ^— JVb loT^ fpaet myfiesk 
Was naked of me.} 

Qxm corpus complexa animae tarn fortis inane. 

Ovid. Met., 1. xiU. fab. ii. 

Dante appears to have fallen into an anaclironism. Virgil's 
death did not happen till long after this period. But Iiom-> 
bardi shows, in opposltioa to the other commentators, that 
ihe anachronism is only apparent. Erictho might well havo 
tf.arvived the battle of Pharsalia long enough to he employe<) 
n her magical pract'ces at the time of Virgil's decease. 

Bi THE VISION. :i9-(ltt 

At unce three hellish furies stain' J with lilood : 
In limb and motion feminine they seem'd ; 
Around them greenest hydras twisting roll'd 
Their volumes ; adders and cerastes' crept 
Instead of hair, and their fierce temples bound. 

He, knowing well the miserable hags 
Who tend the queen of endless wo, thus spako : 
*' Mark thou each dire Erynnis. To the left. 
This is Megffira ; on the right hand, shf» 
Who wails, Alecto ; and Tisiphone 
r th' midst." This said, in silence he remained. 
Thoii breast they each one clawing tore; them- 
selves raised,] 
Smote with their palms, and such thrill clamoi 
That to the bard I clung, suspicion-bound. 
'* Hasten Medusa : so to adamant 
Him shall we change ;" all looking down exclaim'd* 
" E'en when by Theseus' might assail'd, we took 
No ill revenge." " Turn thyself round, and keep 
Thy countenance hid : for if the Gorgon dire 
Be shown, and thou shouldst view it, thy return 
Upwards would be for ever lost." This said, 
Himself, my gentle master, tum'd me round ; 
Not trusted he my heinds, but with his own 
He also hid me. Ye of intellect 
Sound and entire, mark well thf ore' conceal'd 
Under close texture of the mystic strain. 

And now there came o'er the perturbed waves 
Loud-crashing, terrible, a sound that made 

* Adders and eerastes.] 

Vipereom crinem vittis innexa craentis. 

Firg. JEn-j 1. vi. 381 

spin&que vagi torquente cerasUe 

* * • et torrida dipsas 

Et gravis la geinlnom veigeiui caput amphlsbena. 

Lucan. Fharsal^ I. U. 710 
Bo Milton : 

Scorpion and asp, and amphlsbena dire. 
Cerastes honi*d, hydnis and elops drear, 

And dipsas. P. z;., b. x. 5S4 

* 7%« lore.} The poet probably Intends to call the reader • 
attention to the allegorical and mystic sense of the present 
Canto, and not, as Venturi supposes, to that of tho whole 
tvork. Landlno supposes this hidden meaning to be, that in 
the case of those vices which proceed from incontinence and 
knlemperance, reason, which is figured under the person Gf 
Virgil, with the ordinary grace of God, may be a sufficient 
safeguard ; but that in the instance of more heinous crimes. 
Kuch as those we shall hereafter see punished, a special 
er&ce, represented bv the angel, is requisite for our defence 

ST-Uf: HELL, Canto IX. 93 

Either shore tremble, as if of a wind* 
Impetuous, from conflicting vapors sprung, 
That 'gainst some forest driving all his might, 
Plucks off the branches, beats them down, and Iiurla 
Afar ;* then, onward passmg, proudly sweeps 
His whirlwind rage, while leasts and shepherds fly. 

Mine eyes he loosed, and spake : " And now direct 
Thy visual nerve along that ancient foam. 
There, thickest where the smoke ascends." As frof[E 
Before their foe the serpent, through the wave 
Ply swiftly all, till at the ground each oue 
Lies on a heap ; more than a thousand spirits ^ 

Destroy'd, so saw I fleeing before one 
Who poss'd with unwet feet the Stygian sound 
He, from his face removing the gross air. 
Oft his left hand forth stretch'd, and seemed alone 
By that annoyance wearied. I perceived 
That he was sent from heaven ; and to my guide 
Tum'd me, who signal made, that I should stand 
Quiet, and bend to him. Ah me ! how full 
Of noble anger seem'd he. To the gate 
He came, and with his wand' touch'd it, whereat 
Open without impediment it flew. 

" Outcasts of heaven ! O abject race, and sconi'd '** 
Began he, on the horrid grunsel standing, 
" Whence doth this wild excess of insolence 
Lodge in you ? wherefore kick you 'gainst that will 
Ne'er frustrate of its end, and which so oft 
Hath laid on you enforcement of your pangs? 
What profits, at the fates to butt the horn ? 
Vour Cerberus,* if ye remember, hence 

^ A wiiMi.J Imitated by Bemi : 

Com* nn gnippo di vento in la marina 
L' onde, e le navi sottosopra caccia, 
Ed in terra con fViria repentina 
Gli arbori abbatte, sveglie, sfronda e straccia. 
Smarriti fn^on i lavoratori 

E per le sel ve le fiere e* pastori. Orl. Inn., lib. i. c. ii. st & 
» 4far.] " Porta I fiori," " carries away the blossoms," is 
the common reading. ** Porta fuori/' which is the rlghi 
reading, adopted by Lombardl in his edition from the Nido- 
beatina, for which he claims it exclusively, I had also seen 
bi Landino*s edition of 1484, and adopted from thence, long 
sefore it was my chance to meet with Lombard!, 
a mtk hU toand.] 

She with her rod did softly smite the raile, 

Which straight flew ope. SpemeTf F, Q., b. iv. c. iii. St. 4<V 

< YcMT Cerheru».'\ Ccrbems is feigned to have been dragged 
Ay Hercules, bound with a threefold chain, of which, saya 
the angel, he stili bears the marlcs. 

06 THE VISION. D6-18« 

Bears still, peel'd of their hair, his throat and maw ' 

This said, he tum'd back o'er the filthy way. 
And syllable to us spake none ; but wore 
The semblance of a man by other care 
Beset, and keenly press'd, than thought of him 
Who in his presence stands. Then we our stepu 
Toward that territory moved, secure 
After the hallow'd words. We, unopposed, 
There entered ; rmd, my mind eager to learn 
What state a fortress like to that might hold, 
I, soon as enter'd, throw mine eye around. 
And see, on every part, wide-stretching space, 
Replete with bitter pain and torment ill. 

As where Rhone stagnates on the plains of Aries. 
Or as at Pola,^ near Quornaro's gulf, 
That closes Italy and laves her bounds. 
The place is all thick spread with sepulchres ; 
So was it here, save what in horror here 
Exceird : for 'midst the graves were scatter'd flamf^s 
Wherewith intensely all throughout they bum'd.* 
That iron for no craft there hotter needs. 

Their lids all hung suspended ; and beneath. 
From them forth issued leunentable moans, 
Such as the sad and tortured well might raise. 

I thus : " Master I say who are these, interred 
Within these vaults, of whom distinct we hear 
The dolorous sighs." He answer thus retum'd : 

Lombard! blames the other interpreters for having sup 
posed that the angel attributes this exploit to Hercules, a 
fabulous hero, rather than to our Saviour. It would seem &» 
If the good father had foi^otten that Cerberus is himself no 
less a creature of the imagination than the hero who en 
countered him. 

* The plains of Aries.] In Provence- See Ariosto, Orl 
For., e. xxjcix. st. 72 : 

Fu da ogni parte in quest' ultima guerra 
(Benche la casa non fu ugual divisa, 
Ch' assai plu andar del Saracin sotterra 
Per man di Bradamante e di Marfisa) 
Se ne vede ancor segno in quella terra, 
Che presso ad Aril, ova il Rodano stagna. 
Plena di sepolture e la campagna. 

TLese sepulchres are mentioned in the Life of Charlemagne, 
^'hich goes under the name of Archbishop Turpin, cap. S8 and 
30, and by Fazio degli Uberti, Dittamondo. L. iv. cap. xxi. 

^t PUa.] A city of Istria, situated near the gulf of 
wiuamaro, in the Adriatic sea. 

s They burrCd.'] Mr. Darley observes, that in the Incnnta- 
Uon of Hervor (vide Northern Antiquities, vol. ii.) the api.if 
of Angantyr l*es in a tomb " alJ on fire.** 

iSS-181. HELL. Canto X. 97 

" The arch-heretics are here, accompanied 
By every sect their followers ; and much more, 
Than thou belieyest, the tombs are freighted : like 
With like is buried ; and the monuments 
Are different in degrees of heat.'* Tliis said, 
He to the right hand turning, on we pass'd 
Betwixt the afflicted and the ramparts high. 



Dante, having obtained pernUssion frora his gaide, .lolds dUi 
covine with Farinata degli Uberti and C^valcante Caval 
canti, who lie in their fiery tombs that are yet open, and 
not to be closed up till after the last Judgment. Farinata 
predicts the Poet's exile from Florence; and shows him 
that the condemned have knowledge of futm^ things, but 
are ignorant of what is at present passing, unless it be re 
vealed by some new-comer from earth. 

Now by a secret pathway we proceed, 
Between the walls, that hem the region round, 
And the tormented souls : my master first, 
I close behind his steps. " Virtue supreme !" 
I thus began : " who through these ample orbs 
In circuit lead'st me, even as thou wiU'st ; 
Speak thou, and satisfy my wish. May those, 
Who lie within these sepulclires, be seen 1 
Already all the lids are raised, and none 
O'er them keeps watch." He thus in answer spake 
" They shall be closed all, what-time they here 
From Josaphat^ retum'd shall come, and bring 
Their bodies, which above they now have left. 
The cemetery on this part obtain, 
With Epicurus, all his followers, 
Who with the body make the spirit die. 
Here therefore satisfaction shall be soon. 
Both to the question ask'd, and to the wish^ 

^ Josaphat.] t seems to have been a common opinion 
among the Jewa, as well as among many Christians, that the 
general judgment will be held in the valley of Josaphat, or 
Jchoshaphat : " I will also gather all nations, and will bring 
them down into the valley of Jehoshaphat, and will plead 
with tiiem there for my people, and for my heritage Israel, 
whom they have scattered among the nations, and i>arted my 
land." Joel, lit. 8. 

9 T%e wish.] The wish, that Dante had not expressed, was 
to see and converse with the followers of Epicurus ; among 
Krhom, we shall see, were Farinata degU Uberti and Caval- 
Tante Cavaicantl. 

08 TIIE\tSION. 19-5a 

Wliic*! tliou conceal*8t in silence." I replied : 
'* I keep not, guide beloved I from thee my heart 
Secreted, but to shun vain length of words ; 
A lesson erewhile taught me by thyself." 

" O Tuscan ! thou, who through the city of fir© 
Alive art passing, so discreet of speech : 
Here, please thee, stay awhile. Thy utterance) 
Declares the place of thy nativity 
To be that noble land, with which perchance 
I to 3 severely dealt." Sudden that sound 
Forth issued from a vault, whereat, in fear, 
I somewhat closer to my leader's side [Turn 

Approaching, he thus spake : " What dost thou ? 
Lo ! Farinata' there, who hath himself 
Uplifted : from his girdle upwards, all 
Exposed, behold him." On his face was mine 
Already fix'd : his breast and forehead there 
Erecting, seemM as in high scorn he held 
E'en hell. Between the sepulchres, to him 
My guide thrust me, with fearless hands and prompt 
This warning added : " See thy words be clear " 

He, soon as there I stood at the tomb's foot. 
Eyed me a space ; then in disdainful mood 
Address'd me : " Say what ancestors were thine." 

I, willing to obey him, straight reveal'd 
The whole, nor kept back aught : whence he, his 

Somewhat uplifting, cried : " Fiercely were they 
Adverse to me, my party, and the blood 
From whence I sprang : twice,' therefore, I abroad 
Scatter'd them." " Though driven out, yet they 

each time 
From all parts," answer'd I, " return'd ; an art 
Which yours have shown they are not skill'd to leani ** 

1 Fhrinata.] Farinata degll Uberti, a noble Florentine, 
was the leader of the Ghibelline faction, when they obtained 
a signal victory^ over the Guelfi at Montaperto, near the river 
Arbia. Maccniavelli calls him " a man of exalted soul, and 

g'eat military talents." Hist of Flor., b. 11. His erandson, 
onifaclo, or, as he is commonly called, Fazio degli Uberll, 
wrote a poem, entitled the Dittamondo, in imitation of Dante 
I shall have frequent occasion to refer to It thronghont 
those notes. At the conclusion of cap. S7, 1. 11. he makes 
mention of his ancestor Farinata. See note to Life of Dante, 
p. 38. 

3 Ticiee.] The first time In 15S48, when they were driven 
ant by Frederick the Second. See G. Vlllanl, lib. vi. c 34 
«nd the second time in 1300. See note to v. 83. 

U-«4. IIELL, Camto ^. 99 

Then, peering forth from the unclosed jaw, 
Rose fnnn his side a shade,^ high as the chin, 
Leaning, methonght, upon its knees upraised. 
It look'd around, as eager to explore 
If there were other vnSi me ; but perceiving 
That fond imagination quench'd, with tears 
Thus spake : " If thou throu^ this blind prison go'st, 
Led by thy lofty genius and profound. 
Where is my son !' and wherefore not with thee ?" 

I straight replied : " Not of myself I come ; 
By him, who there expects me, through this clim«^ 
Conducted, whom perchance Guido thy son 
Had in contempt."^ Already had his words 
And mode of punishment reaid me his name. 

1 ^ shade.] The spirit of Cavalcante Cavalcanti, a noble 
Florentine, of the Gnelph party. 

3 My son.] Guide, the son of CavalcanteCavalcanti ; "he 
whom I call the first of my friends/* says Dante in his Vita 
Nnova, where the commencement of their friendship is re- 
lated. From the character given of him by contempcwary 
writers, his temper was well formed to assimilate with that 
of our poet. *' He was,** according to G. Villani, lib. viii. c. 
41, "of a philosophical and elegant mind, if he had not been 
too delicate and fastidious.** And Dino Compagnl terms him 
" a young and noble knight, brave and courteous, but of a 
lofty, scornfU spirit, much addicted to solitude and study.** 
Moratori, Rer. Ital. Script., t 9, lib. i. p. 481. He died, either 
n exile at Seriazana, or soon after his return to Florence, 
December, 1300, during the spring of which year the action 
of this poem is supposed to be passing. 

• Gfuido thy son 

Had in contempt.'] 

Guido Cavalcanti, being more given to philosophy than 
poetry, was, perhaps, no great admirer of Virgil. Some po- 
etical compositions by Guido are, however, still extant ; and 
his lepatation for skill in the art was such as to eclipse that 
of his predecessor and namesake, Guido Guinicelli ; as we 
shall see in the Purgatory, Canto xi., in the notes to which 
the reader will find specimens of the poems that have been 
left by each of these writers. His " Canzone sopra 11 Ter- 
leno Amore** was thought worthy of being illustmted by nu- 
ineroas and ample conmientaries. Crescimbeni, 1st. delln 
Volg. Foes., lib. V. 

Onr Author addressed him in a playful sonnet, of which 
the following spirited translation is found in the notes U 
IIayley*8 Essay on Epic Poetry, £p. ill. : 

Henry! 1 wish that yon, and Charles, and I, 
By some sweet spell within a bark were placed, 
A gallant bark with magic virtue graced, 
Sv^ at onr will with every wind to fly ; 

0o that no changes of the shifting sky. 
No stormy terrors of the watery waste, 
ifight bar onr course, but heighten still our taste 
Of sprightly joy, and of our social tie : 

100 THE VISION. 85^ 

Whence I so fully answer'd. He at once 
Exclaim'd, upstarting : " How ! said'st thou, he hmd '^ 
No longer lives he 7 Strikes not on his eye 
The blessed daylight?" Then, of some delay 
I made ere my reply, aware, down fell 
Supine, nor after forth aj^ar'd he more. 

Meanwhile the other, great of soul, near whom 
I yet was stationed, changed not countenance stem 
Nor moved the neck, nor bent his ribbed side. 
** And if," continuing the first discourse, 
« They in this art," he cried, " small ^11 have sliowi: ; 
That doth torment me more e'en than this bed. 
But not yet fifty times' shall be relumed 
Her aspect, who reigns here queen of this realm,' 
Ere thou shalt know the full weight of that art 
So to the pleasant world mayst thou return,^ 

Then that my Lucy, Lucy &ir and free, 

With those soft nymphs, on whom your souls are bent 

The kind magician might to ns convey, 
To taik oflove throughout the live-long day; 

And that each fair might be as well content, 

As I in truth believe our hearts would be. 

The two friends, here called Henry and Charles, are, in the 
original. Guide and Lapo, concerning the latter of whom, sec 
the Life of Dante prefixed ; and Lucy is Monna Bice. 

A more literal version of the sonnet may be found in the 
'^Cansoniere of Dante, translated by Charles Ly^ll, Esq.** 
tSvo, London, 1835, p. 4U7. 

> SaitTst thony he had ? J In iGschylus, the shade of Darius 
is represented as inquiring with similar anxiety after the fat^ 
of his son Xerxes : 

jitossa, Movdia ii H/p^v if»llt6v ^aecv oi voXXQv fiira 
Darius. Ilfl; 6f Sii Kai wot rcXsvrqiv \ fan rig vmrnpta ; 

IIEPXAI. 741, BloomfieU:» EdiU 

jJtessa. Xerxes astonished, desolate, alone [safe 1 

Ohost of Dar. How will this end 1 Nay, pause not. Is he 

The Persians, PoUer*s Translatien, 

* ^Tot yet fifty times.] " Not fifty months shall be passed 
before thou shalt learn, by woful experience, the difficulty 
of returning firom banishment to thy native city.'* 

* Q^een of this realm.} The moon, one of whose titles in 
heiithen mythology, was Proserpine, queen of the shades 

* So to the pleasaiU world mayst thou return.] 

E se tn niai nel dolee mondo reggL 

Lombardi would construe this : ** And if thou ever remain 
ui the pleasant world.** His chief reasons for thus departing 
fh>m the common interpretation, are, first, that **8e** in tiie 
sense of " so** cannot be followed by ** mat,** any mora than 
m Latin, " sic** can be followed by " unqnam ;" and next, 
'hat "reggl** is too unlike "rledl** to be put for it A mon> 

n-«3. HELL, Camto X 101 

As thou slialt tell me why, in all theii' laws, 
Against my kin this people is so fell." 

** The ■laughter' and great havoc," I replied, 
** That color'd Arbia's flood with crimson stain — 
To these impute, that in onr hallow'd dome 
Such orisoni^ ascend." Sighing he shook 
The head, then thus resumed : " In that affiay 
I stood not singly, nor, without just cause, 
Assuredly, should with the rest have stirr*^ ; 
Bat singly there I stood,* when, by consent 
Of all, Florence had to the ground been razed, 
The one who openly forbade the deed." 

" So may thy lineage^ find at last repose," 

Intimate acqnalntance with the early Florentine writers w-»ald 
have taught him that *' mai" is used in other senses than those 
which *' unquam" appears to have had, particularly in tliat 
of ** par," " yet ;** as may be seen in the notes to the Decam- 
eron, p. 43, lid. Ginnti, 1573 ; and that the old writers both of 
prose and verse changed " rledo" into ** reggio," as of ** fiedo*' 
they made *' feggio." Inf., c. xv. v. 30, and e. zvii. v. 75. See 
page 98 of the same notes to the Decameron, where a poet 
before Dante's time is said to have translated ^'Redeont 
flores,*' " Reggiono i fieri." 

1 The tlaughter.\ " By means of Faiinata degli Uberti, 
the Gnelfi were conquered by the army of Idng Manfredi, 
near the river Arbia, with so great a slaughter, that those 
who escaped from that defeat took refbge, not in Florence, 
which city they considered as lost to them, but in Lucca.** 
MacchiaveQi, Hist of Flor., b. ii., and 6. VUlani, lib. vi. c* 
Izxz. and Izxxi. 

9 Swak ori»on$.] This appears to allude to certain prayen 
which were oflbred up in the churches of Florence, for deliv- 
erance from the hostile attempts of the Uberti : or, it may be, 
that the public councils being held in churches, the speeches 
delivered in them against the Uberti are termed ^ orisons,** or 

* Singly there I stood.] Guido Novello assembled a council 
of the Ghibellini at Empoli ; where it was agreed by all, that. 
In order to maintain the ascendency of the Ghibellme p^y 
in Tuscany, it was necessary to destroy Florence, which could 
serve only (the people of that city being Guelfi) to enable the 
party attached to the church to recover its strength. This 
cmel sentence, passed upon so noble a city, met with no op- 
position from any of its citizens or friends, ezcept Farinata 
degli Uberti, who openly and without reserve forbade the 
measure ; affirming, tliat be had endured so many hardships, 
and encountered so many dangers, with no other view than 
Ihat of being able to pass his days in his own country. Mao* 
chiavelli. Hist, of Flor., b. ii. 

* 8^ may thy lineag'e.] 

Deh se riposi mai vostra semenza. 


Here Lombaidi is again mistaken, as at v. 80, above. Let 
Cie take this occasion to apprize the reader of Italian poeny. 
Iliac ooe not well versed in it is very apt to eiisapiwebend 

103 THE VISION. 114- lat 

I thus adjured him, " as thou solve this knot, 
Wliich now involves my mind. If right I hear. 
Ye seem to view beforehand that which time 
Leads with him, of the present uninform d." 

« We view,' as one who hath an evil sight,*' 
He answered, " plainly, objects far remote ; 
So much of his large splendor yet imparts 
The Almighty Ruler: but when they approcoli. 
Or actually exist, our intellect 
Tlien wholly fails ; nor of your human state, 
Except what others bring us, know we aught 
Hence therefore mayst &ou understand, that all 
Our knowledge in that instant shall expire. 
When on futurity the portals dose/' 

Then conscious of my fault,' and by remorse 
Smitten, I added thus : " Now shalt thou say 
To him there fallen, that his ofispring still 
Is to the living join'd ; and bid hun ^ow. 
That if from answer, silent, I abstain'd, 
'Twas that my thought was occupied, intent 
Upon that error, which thy help hath solved." 

But now my master summoning me back 
I heard, and with more eager haste besought 
The spirit to inform me, who with him 
^artook his lot. He answer thus retum'd : 
'* More than a thousand with me here are laid. 
Within is Frederick,* second of that name. 

the word " se,** as I think Ck)wper has done In translatl.ig 
Milton*8 Italian verses. A good Instance of the diihrenl 
meanings In which It Is nsed, Is aflbrded In the foUowlzig 
lines by Bernardo Capello : 

E tn, cha dolcemente i fixai e l* erba 

Con lieve corso mormorando bcwnl, 

Tranqalllo finme dl vaghezza pfeno ; 
Se*l clelo al mar si chiaro t* accompagni ; 

8e panto dl pietade In te si serba: 

Le mle lagrlme accogli entro al tno seno. 

Here the first ** se** signifies " so,** and the seeond, *" If.*' 

> We vino."] The departed spirits know things past and 
lo come ; yet are Ignorant of things present. Agamemnon 
foretells what should happen unto Ulysses, yet Ignorantly 
Inquires what Is become of his own son.** Brown on Umt 
Burialt ch. Iv. 

s Mw fault.^ Dante felt remorse for not having returned an 
immediate answer to the inquiry of Cavaleante, Arom which 
delay he was led to believe that his son Guldo was no lonsel 

* V^fderiek.} The Emperor Frederick the Second, w ho died 
lal5iSa See notes to Canto ziiL 

J31-138. HELL, Canto XL 103 

And the Lord Cardinal ;' and of the rest 

I speak not" He, this said, from sight withdrew. 

But I my steps toward the ancient bard 

Reverting, rummated on the words 

Betokening me sach ill. Onward he moved. 

And thus, in going, question'd: " Whence the amaze 

That holds thy senses wrapt?" I satisfied 

The inquiry, and the sage enjoin'd me straight : 

" Let thy safe memory store what thou hast heard 

To thee importing harm ; and note thou this," 

With his raised finger bidding me take heed, 

'< When thou shalt stand before her gracious beam. 

Whose bright eye all surveys, she of thy life 

The future tenor will to thee unfold." 

Forthwith he to the left hand tum'd his feet ; 
We left the wall, and towards the middle space 
Went by the path that to a valley strikes. 
Which e'en thus high exhaled its noisome steam 



Dante arrives at the verge of a rocky precipice which encloses 
the seventh circle, where he sees the sepulchre of Anas- 
tasius the Heretic; behind the lid of which pausing a 
little, to make himself capable by degrees of endnring the 
fetid smell that steamed upward from the abyss, he is 
instructed by Yirgil concerning the manner in which the 
three following circles are disposed, and what description 
of sinners is punished in each. He then inquires the 
reason why the carnal, the gluttonous, the avaricious 
and prodigal, the wrathfhl and gloomy, snflfer not their 
punishments within the city of Dis. He neit asks how 

1 The Lord Cardinal^] Ottaviano Ubaldlni, a Florentine, 
made cardinal In 1345, and deceased about 1373. On account 
of his great influence, he was generally known by the appel- 
lation of " the Cardinal.** It is reported of him, that he de 
dared, if there were any such thing as a human soul, he had 
lost hU for the Ghibellini. 

** I know not,** says Tiraboschi, *' whether it is on sufficient 
grounds that Crescimbeni numbers among the Poets of this 
age the Cardinal Uttaviano, or Ottaviano degll Ulialdini, a 
Florentine, archdeacon and procurator of the church of Bo- 
jjfna, afterwards made Cardinal by Innocent IV. in 1345, and 
employed in the most important public affairs, wherein, how- 
ever, he showed himself, more than became his character, a 
fhvorer of the Ghibellines. He died, not in the year 1373, as 
Ciaconio and other writers have reported, but at soonest after 
the July of 1373, at which time he was in Mugello with Pope 
Gregory X.** Tiraboaehi DeUa Poea. It., Mr MatMat? Edii. 
U i. p. 140. 

* Her graeiouM heam.'\ Beatrice. 


the crime of nsttry is an oifence against God; and a1 
length the two Poets go towards the place from wheiic« 
a passage leads down to the seventh circle. 

Upon the utmost verge of a high bank, 
By craggy rocks environM roundi we came, 
Where woes beneath, more crael yet, were Ktow'd : 
And here, to shun the horrible excess 
Of fetid exhalation upward cast 
From the profound abyss, behind the lid 
Of a great monument we stood retired. 
Whereon this scroll I marked : " I have in :;harge 
Pope Anastasius,' whom Photinus drew 
From the right path." — ** Ere our descent, behooves 
We make delay, that somewhat first the sense. 
To the dire breath accustom'd, afterward 
Regard it not." My master thus ; to whom 
Answering I spake : " Some compensation find, 
That the time pass not wholly lost." He. then : 
" Lo ! how my thoughts e'en to thy wishes tend 
My son !^ Within these rocks," he thus began, 
" Are three close circles in gradation placed. 
As these which now thou leavest. Each one is fuP 
Of spirits accursed ; but that the sight alone 
Hereafter may suffice thee, listen how 
And for what cause in durance they abide 

" Of all malicious act abhorr'd in heaven, 
The end is injury ; and all such end 
Either by force or fraud' works other's wo 
But fraud, because of man peculiar evil, 
To God is more displeasing ; and beneath, 
The fraudulent are therefore doom'd to endure 
Severer pang. The violent occupy 

1 Pope ^Tuutanius.] The commentators are not agreed 
concerning the person who Is here mentioned as a followei 
of the heretical Photinus. By some he is supposed to have 
been Anastaslas the Second ; by others, the Fourth of that 
name ; while a third set, jealous of the integrity of the papal 
faiUi, contend that our poet has confounded him with Anasta 
ilus I., Emperor of the East. Fazio degli Uberti, like oui 
author, makes him a pope : 

Anastasio papa in quel tempo era, 
Di Fotin vago a mal grade de sui- 

Dittamondo, 1. U. cap. zlv. 

3 My »on.] The remainder of the present Canto may be 
i^onsidered as a syllabus of the whole of this part of the 

> Either hp fores c fraud.} "Cum autem duobut modls, 
Id est, ant vi, aut frauae liat injuria . . . utramque homhil 
tUenissinnm ; sed fraus odio digna majore.** Cic. de Off*t UU 
'. c. vtU. 

30-68. HELL, Canto XI 105 

Ail the fint circle ; and because, to force, 

Three penons are obnoxious, in three rounils 

Each within other separate, is it framed. 

To God, his neighbor, and himself, by man 

Force may be ofier'd ; to himself I say, 

And his possessions, as thou soon shalt hear 

At full. Death, violent death, and painful wounds 

Upon his neighbor he mflicts ; and wastes, 

By devastation, pillage, and the flames. 

His substance. Slayers, and eacli one that smiiofi 

In malice, plunderers, and all robbers, hence 

The torment undergo of the first round, 

In different herds. Man can do violence 

To himself and his own blessings : and for this, 

He, in the second round must aye deplore 

With unavailing penitence his crime. 

Whoe'er derives himself of life and light, 

In reckless lavishment his talent wastes, 

And sorrows^ there where he should dwell in yry. 

To God may force be offer'd, in the heart 

Denying and blaspheming his high power, 

And Nature with her kindly law contemning. 

And thence the inmost round marks with its seal 

Sodom, and Cahors,' and all such as speak 

Contemptuously of the Godhead in their hearts. 

" Fraud, that in every conscience leaves a sting. 
May be by man employed on one, whose trust 
He wins, or on another who withholds 
Strict confidence. Seems as the latter way 
Broke but the bond of love which Nature makes. 
Whence in the second circle have their nest, 
Dissimulation, witchcraft, flatteries. 
Theft, falsehood, simony, all who seduce 
To lusl, or set their honesty at pawn. 
With such vile scum as these. The other way 
Forgets both Nature's general love, and that 
Which thereto added afterward gives birth 
To special faith. Whence in the lesser circb, 
Point of the universe, dread seat of Dis, 

1 JSni M&rrmw9.} This fine moral, that not to enjoy our be- 
^ Is to be nngretefal to the Author of It, is well ezprosseJ 
to Biienser, F. Q., b. iv. c viiL st. 15. 

For he whose dales in wilfhl woe are wome. 

The grace of his Creator doth despise. 

That will not use his gifts for thankless nlgardlse. 

« Cakors.^ A city of Goienne, much ^qnented by nsurertk 

106 A'll <5 VISION . fiH04 

The traitor is eternally consumed.'* 

I thus : " Instructor, clearly thy discourse 
Proceeds, distinguishing the hideous chasm 
And Its inhabitants wiUi skill exact. 
But tell me this : they of the dull, fat pool. 
Whom the rain beats, or whom the tempest diivcs. 
Or who with tongues so fierce conflicting meet, 
Wherefore within the city fire-illumed 
Are not these punish'd, if God's wrath be on tbcin ? 
And if it be not, wherefore in such guise 
Are they condemned?" He answer thus retuni'd : 
" Wherefore in dotage wanders thus thy mind, 
Not so accustom'd ? or what other thoughts 
Possess it ? Dwell not in thy memory 
The words, wherein thy ethic page^ describes 
Three dispositions adverse to Heaven's will, 
Incontinence, malice, and mad brutishness, 
And how incontinence the least oflends 
God, and least guilt mcurs ? If well thou not** 
This judgment, and remember who they are, 
Without these walls to vaia repentance doom'd. 
Thou shalt discern why they apart are placed 
From these fell spirits, and less wreakful pours 
Justice divine on them its vengeance down." 
" O sun ! who healest all imperfect sight, 
Thou so content'st me, when thou solvest my doubt 
That ignorance not leas than knowledge charms. 
Yet somewhat turn thee back," I in these words 
Contmued, " where thou said'st, that usury 
Oflends celestial Goodness ; and this knot 
Perplex'd unravel." He thus made reply : 
'* Philosophy, to an attentive ear. 
Clearly points out, not in one part alone, 
How imitative Nature takes her course 
From the celestial mind, and from its art : 
And where her laws' the Stagirite unfolds, 

1 Thff ethic page.] He refers to Aristotle*s Ethics : " Mcr<l 
fii raSra Xcjcr/ov iXXifv votriaafiivovs &px^* ^^( ^^ ^ *<P^ ^^ 
4^ ^nxruv Tpla iorXv cFJij xaxta iutpacta ^ijpidnii" 

Ethie, J^Ticomaeh.., lib. vli. c. 1. 

'* In tbe next place, entering on another division of the sutv 
feet, let it be defined, that resriectlng morals there are three 
Borts of things to be avoided, :nalice, incontinence, and bm 

« Jler laws.] Aristotle's Physics.—-" 'H r^wf /uptirai. 
Hi» f4aiv." Ari»tot. ^YS. AKP. lib. ii. c. 3. *' Art iniitalos 
natare."~See the Coltivazione of Alamanni. lib. i 

10&-121. HELL, Canto XL 107 

N^ot many leaves scanned o'er, observing well 
Thou shalt discover, that your art on her 
Obsequious follows, as the learner treads 
In liis instructor's step ; so that your art 
Deserves the name of second in descent' 
From God. These two, if thou recall to mind 
Creation's holy book,' from the beginning 
Were the right source of life and excellence 
To himian kind. But in another path 
Tne usurer walks ; and Nature in herself 
And in her follower thus he sets at naught, 
Placing elsewhere his hope.* But follow now 
My steps on forward journey bent ; for now 
The Pisces play with undulating fflance 
Along the horizon, and the Wain^lies all 
O'er the north-west ; and onward there a space 
Is our steep passage down the rocky height.' 




Descending by a very nigged way Into the seventh circle, 
where the violent are punished, Dante and his leader find 
it guarded by the Minotaur; whose fury being pacified by 
Virgil, they step downwards from crag to crag ; till, draw- 
ing near to the bottom, they descry a river of blood, wherein 
are tormented such as have committed violence a{^ust 

Tarte umana 

Altro non i da dir ch* un dolce sprone, 
Un correger soave, un pio sostegno, 
Uno esperto imitar, comporre accorto 
Un soUecito attar con studio e*ngegno 
La cagion natural, 1* efietto, e U opra. 

* Second in descent.'] 

Si che vostr' arte a Dio quasi h nipote. 

Ginstizia fu da cielO; e di Dio h flglia, 
E ogni bona leg^e a Dio 6 nipote. 

R Quadrir., lib. iv. cap. S. 
9 Creation's holy book.} Genesis, c. ii. v. 15: " And the Loid 
God took the man, and put him into the garden of Eden, to 
dress it, and to keep it." And, Genesis, c. iii. v. 19 : " In che 
iweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread." 

3 Plaeinr elsewhere his hope.] The usurer, trusting in the 
produce of his wealth lent out on usury, despises nature di- 
rectly, because he does not avail himself or her means for 
maintaining or enriching himself; and indirectly, because ho 
does not avail himself of the means which art, the follower 
And imitator of nature, would afford him for the same pur- 

* The Wain.] The constellation Bodtes, or Charles's Wain 

108 THE VISION. 1-17. 

their neighbor. At these, when they strive to emerge ftoiti 
the bloodf a troop of Centaurs, running along the side of the 
river, aim their arrows ; and three of their band opposiug 
our travellers at the foot of the steep, Virgil prevails so far, 
that one consents to cany them both across the stream; 
and on their passage, Dante is informed by. him of thi* 
course of the river, and of those that are punished therein 

Thb place, where to descend the precipice 
We came, was rough as Alp ; and on its verge 
Such object lay, as every eye would shun. 

As is that ruin, which Adice's stream' 
On this side Trento struck, shouldering the wave, 
Or loosed by earthquake or for lack of prop ; 
For from the mountain's summit, whence it moved 
To the low level, so the headlong rock 
Is shiver'd, that some passage* it might give 
To him who from above would pass ; e'en such 
Into the chasm was that descent : and there 
At point of the disparted ridge lay stretch'd 
The infamy of Crete,' detested brood 
Of the feigu'd heifer :* and at sight of us 
It gnaw'd itself, as one with rage distract, [deem'st 
To him my guide exclaim'd: "Perchance thou 
The King of Athens* here, who, in the world 

1 ^dice's stream.] After a great deal having been said on 
the subject, it still appears very uncertain at what part of the 
river this fail of the mountain happened. 

s Some ptusajfe.] Lombardi erroneously, I think, under 
stands by *' alcuna via" " no passage ;** in which sense ** al- 
cuno" is certainly sometimes used by some old writers. Mou 
ti, as usual, agrees with Lombardi. See note to c. ill. v. 40. 

* The itif amy of Crete.] The Minotaur. 

* The feigned heifer.] Pasiphafi. 

* TAe king ofMhens.] Theseus, who was enabled by the 
mstruction of Ariadne, the sister of the Minotaur, to destro) 
^t monster. "Duca d* Atone." So Chaucer calls Theseus 

Whilom, as olde stories tellen us. 
There was a duk, that highte Theseus. 

T^e EnighU'e TaLt 

And Shakspeare : 

Happy be Theseus, our renowned Duke. 

Midsummer ^ghts Z>ream, a. i. s. 1. 

**Thl« Is In reality," observes Mr. Douce, " no misapplica- 
tion of a modem title, as Mr. Stevens conceived, but a leKiti- 
roate use of the word in its primitive Latin sense of leader, 
and 80 it is often used in the Bible. Shakspeare might have 
found Dnke Theseus in the Book of Troy, or in TurberviUe*s 
Ovld*s Episties. See the argument to that of Phsdra and 
^ypolytus." DvuWs niustrations sf Shakspeare, 8vo. 1807 

18-44. HELU Canto XII. 109 

Above, thy death contrived. Monster ! avaunt ! 
He comes not tutor*d by thy sister's art,* 
But to behold your torments is he come." 

Like to a biiil,* that with impetuous spring 
Darts, at the moment when the fatal blow 
Hath struck him, but unable to proceed 
Plunges on either side ; so saw I plunge 
The Minotaur ; whereat the sage exclaim'd : 
* Run to the passage ! while he storms, His well 
That thou descend." Thus down our road we took 
Through those dilapidated crags, that oft 
Moved underneath my feet, to weight' like theirs 
Unused. I pondering went, and thus he spake : 
" Perhaps thy thoughts are of this ruin'd steep, 
Guarded by the brute violence, which I 
Have vanquished now. Know then, that when I enl 
Hither descended to the nether hell. 
This rock was not yet fallen. But past doubt, 
(If well I mark) not long ere He arrived,* 
Who carried off from Dis the mighty spoil 
Of the highest circle, then through all its bounds 
Such trembling seized the deep concave and foul, 
I thought the universe was thnll'd with love. 
Whereby, there are who deem, the world hath of^ 
Been into ohaos turn'd :* and in that point. 
Here, and elsewhere, that old rock toppled down. 
But fix thine eyes beneath : the river of blood* 

1 Thy 8i8ter*a art.'] Ariadne, 
s Like to a &h//.] 

*SLi h* Srav d^ijv Ix.'^v irl\eKvv aP^ioi di'^, 
K6\pas i^dmOtv Ktpduv fiobs iypa^XoiOt 
^Iva rdnri iid ira<rd», b it xpo$opu^¥ iptw^0t9 

Homer, IL, 1. zrii. 5SSL 

As when some vigorous youth with sharpened axe 
A pastured bullock smites behind the horns, 
And hews the muscle through ; he at the stroke 
Springs forth and falls. Coxoper^e TSranslatitm, 

> Toyteighl^ 

Incumbent on the dusky air 

That felt unusual weight. Milton, P. L., b. 1. SS7. 

* He arrived.] Our Saviour, who, according to Dant^ 
when he ascended from hell, carried with him the souls of 
ihe Patriarchs, and of other just men, out of the first circla 
Bee Canto iv. 

* Been irUo chaos tuni'd.] This opinion is attributed to 

* Tke river of blood.] Delude vidi locum (du. lacum T) 
naoDiiin totum, ut mihi vldebatur, plenum sanguine. Sed. 
dls6 mihi Apostolus, sed non sanguis, sed ignis est ad coiv 


i 10 THE VISION. 45-W 

Approaches^ in the which all those are steep'Uf 
Who have by violence injured." O blind luijt ! 
O foolish wrath ! who so dost goad us on 
In the brief life, and in the eternal then 
Thus miserably o'erwhelm us. I beheld 
An ample foss, that in a bow was bent. 
As circling all the plain ; for so my guide 
Had told. Between it and the rampart's base, 
On trail ran Centaurs, with keen arrows arm'd, 
As to the chase they on the earth were wont 

At seeing us descend they each one stood ; 
And issuing from the troop, three sped with bowi* 
And missile weapons chosen first ; of whom 
One cried from far : " Say, to what pain ye come 
Condemned, who down this steep have joumey'd 

From whence ye stand, or else the bow I draw." 

To whom my guide : <* Our answer shall be made 
To Chiron, there, when nearer him we come. 
(11 was thy mind, thus ever quick and rash." 
Then me he touched, and spake : <* Nessus is thin. 
Who for the fau: Delanira died. 
And wrought himself revenge* for his own fate. 
He in the midst, that on his breast looks down. 
Is the great Chiron who Achilles nunsed ; 
That other, Pholus, prone to Mrrath." Around 
The foss these go by thousands, aiming shafts 
At whatsoever spirit dares emerge' 
From out the blood, more than his guilt allows 

We to those beasts, that rapid strode along. 
Drew near ; when Chiron took ah arrow forth. 
And with the notch push'd back his shaggy beard 
To the cheek-bone, then, his great mouth to view 

eremandns homicidas, et odiosos deputatas. Hanc tanien f\- 
militudinem propter sanguinis etfasioneiu retinet. Mberici 

1 And wrovght himself revenge-l Nessas, when dying by 
the hand of Hercules, charged De'ianim to preserve the gore 
from his wound ; for that if the afiections ot Hercules should 
at any time be estranged from her, it would act as a charm, 
and recali them. De'ianira had occasion to try the eiperi- 
ment; and the venom acting, as Nessus had intended, 
catised Hercules to expire In torments. See the Truchinic 
if Sophocles. 

s Emerge.] Multos in eis vidi usque ad talos demergl, 
alios usque ad genua, vol femora, alios usque ad pectus 
(uxta pecoati vidi roodum: alios vero qui majoris ciibiImIs 
uoxa tenebantur in ipsis summitatibus supersedere oonapeilt 
4tberiei Vision $ 3 

T7-I09 HELL, Canto XII, H) 

Exposing, to Lis fellows thus exClaim'd : 

" Are ye awaie, that he who comes behind 

Moves what he touches? The feet of the dead 

Are not so wont." My trusty guide, who now 

Stood near his breast, where the two natures joiD, 

Thus made reply : " He is indeed alive. 

And solitary so must needs by me 

Be shown the gloomy vale, thereto induced 

By strict necessity, not by delight. 

She left her joyful harpings in the sky, 

Who this new office to my care consigned. 

He is no robber, no dark spirit I. 

But by that virtue, which empowers my step 

To tread so wild a path, grant us, I pray, 

One of thy band, whom we may trust secure; 

Who to the ford may lead us, and convey 

Across, him mounted on his back ; for he 

Is not a spirit that may walk the air." 

Then on his right breast turmng, Chiron thus 
To Nesbus^ spake : " Return, and be their guide. 
And if ye chance to cross another troop. 
Command them keep aloof." Onward we moved. 
The faithful escort by our side, along 
The border of the crimson-seething flood. 
Whence, from those steep'd within, loud shrieks arose 

Some there I mark'd, as high as to their brow 
Inmiersed, of whom the mighty Centaur thus : 
" These are the souls of tyrants, who were given 
To blood and rapine. Here they wail aloud 
Their merciless wrongs. Here Alexander dwells, 
And Dionysius fell, who many a year 
Of wo wrought for fair Sicily. That brow, 
Whereon the hair so jetty clustering hangs. 

* Jk''essu3.] Our Poet was probably induced, by the follow- 
ing line in Ovid, to assign to Nessus the task of conductinii 
tieni over the ford : 

Nessus adit inenibrisque valens scitusque vadomm. 

Jlfetam., 1. ix. 

And Ovid's authority was Sophocles, who says of thif 
Oentanr — 

^0; rbv fia6v^l>ovv iroTaftii ESijyov fiporobf 
yiiadod vdpne xeprnv oUrs vonirtiAOis 
Kfiirats ipicmaVf ovre ^ai^caiv vsdi. 

TVaeh, 5T0 
He in his arms, across Evenns* stream 
Deep-flowing, bore the passenger for hire. 
Withoat or sail. or hiliow cleaving oar. 


112 THE VISION llO-iJMi 

Is Azzolino ;^ that with flaxen locks 

Obizzo^ of Este, in the world destioy'd 

By his foul step-son.*' To the bard revered 

I tum'd me round, and thus he spake : *^ Let him 

Be to thee now first leader, me but next 

To him in rank." Then farther on a space 

The Centaur paused, near some, who at the throat 

Were extant from the wave ; and, showing us 

A spirit by itself apart retired, 

Exciaim'd: " He' in God's bosom sLiote the hearts 

Which yet is honor'd on the bank of Thames " 

A race I next espied who held the head, 
And even all the bust, above the stream. 
Midst these I many a face remember'd well. 
Thus shallow more and more the blood became. 
So that at last it but imbrued the feet ; 
And there our passage lay athwart the foss. 

* ^tiolino.] Azzolino, or Ezzolino di Rotuano, a mos 
crael tyrant in the Marca Trivigiana, Lord of Tadua, Vieen 
za, Verona, and Brescia, who died in 1260. His atrocltie* 
form the subject of a Latin tragedy, called Eccerinls, by A\ 
bertino Mnssato, of Padua, the conteoiporary of Dante, and 
the most elegant writer of Latin verse of that age See also 
the Paradise, Canto Lx. Beml, Orl. Inn., lib. ii. c. xxv. st. 50. 
Ariosto, Orl. Fur., c. iii. st. 33 ; and Tassoni, Secehia Rapita, 
z. viii. St. 11. 

s O6tzz0 of Este.\ Marquis of Ferrara and of the Marca 
VAncona, was murdered by his own son (whom, for that 
,iiost unnatural act, Dante calls his step-son) for the sake of 
the treasures which his rapaci^ had amassed. See Ario?f'>, 
Orl. Fur., c. iil^ st 32. He died in 1293, according u\ Gibbvin. 
Ant. of the House of Brunswick, Posth. Works, v. ii. 4to. 

* He.] *' Henrie, the brother of this Edmand. and son to 
the foresaid king of Almaine, (Richard, brother of Uenry Hi 
of England,) as he returned from Aflrike, where lie had been 
with nince Edward, was slain at Viterbo in Italy (whithei 
he was come about business which he had to do with the 
Pope) by the hand of Guy de Montfort, the son of Simon de 
Montfort, Earl of Leicester, in revenge of the same Simon's 
death. The murther was committed afore the high altar, as 
the same Henrie kneeled there to hear divine service.** A D. 
1272. Uolituked's Ckron^p.^5. See also Giov. Villani Hist, 
lib. vii. c. 40, where it is said " that the heart of Henry wa? 
put into a golden cup, and placed on a pillar at London 
bridge over the river Thames, for a memorial to the English 
of the said outrage.** Lombardi suggests that '*ancor si 
cola** in the text may mean, not that ** the heart was >stili 
honored,** but that it was put into a perforated cup in order 
that the blood dripping from it might excite the spectators te 
■ This is sorely too improbable. 

Un poco prima dove piu si stava 
Sicuro Bnhco, 11 conte di Monforte 
L'alma del nor|x> col coltel gU cava 

Fhxro degli Vberti, VittamonHo, I. II. cap. Xlb 

B7-140. HELL, Canio XIU. 113 

'* As ever on this side the boiling wave 
Thou seest diminishing," the Centanr said, 
" So on the other, be thou well aasored. 
It lower still and lower sinks its bed, 
Till in that part it re-uniting join, 
Where 'tis the lot of tyranny to mourn. 
There Heaven's stem justice lays chastising hand 
On Attila, who was the scourge of earth, 
On Sextus and on Pyrrfaus,^ and extracts 
Tears ever by the seething flood unlocked 
From the Rinieri, of Cometo this, 
Pazzo the other named,' who fiUM the ways 
With violence and war." This said, he tura'd, 
And quitting us, alone repassed the ford 



Etill in the seventh circle, Dante enters its second compart- 
ment, which contains both those who have done violence 
on their own perwns and those who have violently cou- 
snmed their goods ; the first changed into roagh and knot- 
ted trees whereon the harpies build their nests, the lattet 
chased and torn by black female mastlffii. Among the for 
mer, Piero delle Vigne is one who tells him the canse of 
his having committed snicide, and moreover in what man 
ner the souls are transformed into those trunks. Of the 
latter crew, he recognises Lano, a Siennese, and Giacomo, 
a Padnan : and lastly, a Florentine, who had hang himself 
from his own roof, speaks to him of the calamities of his 

Ere Nessus yet had reach'd the other bank, • 
We enter*d on a forest,* where no track 
Of steps had worn a way. Not verdant there 
The foliage, but of dusky hue ; not light 
The boughs and tapering, but witi* knares deform'd 
And matted thick : fruits there were none, but thomfr 

< On Sextus and on Pyrrhus-l Sextus, either the son at 
Tkrqnin the Proud, or of Pompey the Great ; and Pjrzrhiifl 
king of Epiras. 

« The Rinieri, of Cometo tkii^ 

Pazzo the other named. ] 

Two noted marauders, by whose depredations the pablic 
ways In Italy were infested. The latter was of the noble 
fiunily of Paasad in Florence. 

* ji fore$t.\ Inde in aliam vallem nimis terribilioreu 
deveni plenam subtilissimis arboribus in modum hastaruia 
■exaginta brachiorum longitndlnem habentibus, quamm om 
ntoro capita, ac si sudes acutissima erant, et spinosa Mberia 

114 THE VISION. T-8h 

Instead, with veuom fiU'd. Less sharp than thmo, 
Ijess int.*icate the brakes, wherem abide 
Those animals, that hate the cultured fields, 
Betwijit Cometo and Cecina's stream.' 

Here the brute Harpies make their nest, the mnir 
Who from the Strophades* the Trojan band 
Drove with dire boding of their future wo. 
Broad are theur pennons,' of the human form 
Their neck and countenance, arm'd with talons kcc*! 
The feet, and the huge belly fledged with win^ 
These sit and wail on the drear myitic wood. 

The kind instructor in these words began : 
" Ere farther thou proceed, know thou art now 
I' th* second round, and shalt be, till thou come 
Upon the horrid sand : look therefore well 
Around thee, and such things thou shalt behold. 
As would my speech discreet" On all sides 
I heard sad plainings breathe, and none could se^ 
From whom they might have issued. In amaze 
Fast bound I stood. He, as it seem'd, believei^ 
That I had thought so many voices came 
From some amid those thickets doee concealed t 
And thus his speech resumed : " If thou lop off 
A single twig from one of those ill plants, 
The thought thou hast conceived shall vanish quite.** 

Thereat a little stretching forth my hand, 
From a great wilding gathered 1* a branch. 
And straight the tnmk exclaimed ; " Why pluck'st 

thou me?" 
Then, as the dark blood trickled down its side, 
These words it added : " Wherefore tear'st n*.9 thus / 
Is there no touch of mercy in thy breast ? 
Men once were we, that now are rooted here. 

^ BettBixt Cometo and Cecina^t »tream.'\ h. wild and wood| 
l/act of country, abounding in deer, goats, and wild boars 
Cecina is a river not far to the south of Leghorn ; Cometii 
\ small city on the same coast, in the patrimony of fhc 

« The 8trophade*.\ See Virg. iGn., lib. Ul. 210. 

s Broad an their pennone.] 

Virginei volocmm vnltns, foedissima ventris 
Trolnvies, nncaeque manus et pallida semper 
Ora fame. Firg. JEn^ lib. ill. SH^ 

' Gathered L] SoFrezEl: 

A qnelle frasche stesi sn la mano, 

iS d'ana vetta an ramnscel ne coisi ; 

Allora ella gridb : oimd, fa piano, 
R sangue v'vo usci, ond* io lo tolsl. 

// Quadrir , Ub. 1. cap. 4 

m^ HELL. Canii XIll. 115 

Thy haad might well have spared ub, hud .\re been 
The souls of serpents." As a brand yet f^reen, 
That bnming at one end from the other sends 
A groaning sound, and hisses with the wind 
That forces out its way, so bunt at once 
Forth from the broken splinter words and blood 

[, letting fall the bough, remained as one 
Assail'd by terror ; and the sage replied : 
" If he, O injured spirit ! could have believed 
Whi^t he hath seen but m my verse described,' 
He never against thee had stretch'd his hand 
But I, because the thing surpassed belief, 
Prompted him to this deed, which even now 
Myself I rue. But tell me, who thou wast ; 
That, for this wrong to do thee some amende. 
In the upper world (for thither to return 
Is granted him) thy fame he may revive." 
" That pleasai t word of thine,"* the trunk replied^ 
" Hath so inveigled me, that I from speech 
Cannot refrain, wherein if I indulge 
A little longer, in the snare detained. 
Count it not grievous. I it was,' who held 

1 In, my verse described.'] The commentators explain this, 
'* If he could have believed, in consequence of my asstuances 
alone, that of which he hadi sow had ocular proof, he would 
not have stretched forth his hand acainst thee." But I am 
of opinion that Dante makes Virgil arlude to his own story of 
Polydoms, in the third book of the iEneid. 

s T%at pleatant word of thine.] " Since you have inveigled 
me to soeak by holding forth so gratifying an expectation, let 
it not displease you if I am us it were detained in the «nare 
yon have spread for me, so as to be somewhat .prolix ui my 

* T it was.] Piero delle Vigne, a native of Capua, who 
from a low condition raised Umself, by his eloquence and 
legal knowledge, to the office of Chancellor to the Emperor 
Frederick II. ; whose confidence in him was such, that his 
inflnenee in the empire became unbounded. The courtiers, 
envious of his exalted situation, contrived, by means of forged 
letters, to make Frederick believe that he held a secret and 
tnitofous intercourse with the Pope, who was then at enmity 
with the Emperor. In consequence of this supposed crime, 
he was cruelly condemned, by his too credulous sovereign, to 
lose his eyes ; and being driven to despair by his unmerited 
calamity and disgrace, he put an end to his life by dashing 
out his brains against the walls of a church, in the year 1945. 
Both Frederick and Piero delle Vigne composed verses in the 
Sicilian dialect, which are now extant. 

A canzone by each of them may be seen in the ninth book 
of the Sonetti and Canmni di diversi Antorl Toscani, pub- 
lished by the Giuotl in 1537. See further the note on Pcig^ 


Santo tti. IIU 

no THE VISION. ti-Ul. 

Both keyti to Frederick's heart, and turn* J the wards, 

Opening and shutting, with a skill so sweet, 

That besides me, into his inmost breast 

Scarce any other could admittance find. 

The faith I bore to my high charge was such. 

It cost me the life-blood that warm'd my vein^ 

The harlot,' who ne'er tum'd her gloating eyes 

From Caesar's household, common vice and pesj 

Of courts, 'gainst me inflamed the minds of all ; 

And to Augustus they so spread the flame, 

That my glad honors changed to bitter woeB 

My soul, disdainful and disgrusted, sought 

Refuge in death from scorn, and I became. 

Just as I was, unjust toward myself. 

By the new roots, which fix this stem, I swear. 

That never faith I broke to my liege lord. 

Who merited such honor ; and of you. 

If any to the world indeed return. 

Clear he from wrong my memory, that lies 

Yet prostrate under envy's cruel blow." 

First somewhat pausing, till the mournful words 
Were ended, then to me the bard began : 
" Lose not the time ; but speak, and of him ask, 
If more thou wish to learn." Whence I replied 
" Question thou him again of whatsoe'er 
Will, as thou think'st, content me ; f(»r no powei 
Have I to ask, such pity is at my heart." 

He thus resumed : " So may he do for thee 
Freely what thou entreatest, as thou yet 
Be pleased, imprison'd spirit ! to declare, 
How in these gnarled joints the soul is tied ; 
And whether any ever from such frame 
Be looseu'd, if thou canst, that also tell." 

Thereat the trunk breathed hard, and the wmd sotAi 
Changed into sounds articulate like these : 
" Briefly ye shall be answer'd. When depaits 
The fierce soul from the body, by itself 
Thence torn asunder, to the seventh gulf 
By Minos doom'd, into the wood it falls. 
No place assign'd, but wheresoever chance 
Hurls it ; there sprouting, as a grain of spelt, 

1 7%e harlot.] Envy. Chaucer alludes to this, in the Pn» 
lague to the Le^ade of Good Women : 

Envie is lavender to the court alway. 
For she ne parteth neither night ne day 
Oat of tb 9 house of Cesar : thus saith Duit 

.0S-13& HELL, Canto XIII. 117 

!t rises to a saplingi growing thence 

A savage plant The Harpies, on its Ivaves 

Then feeding, cause both pain, and for the paiu 

A vent to grief. We, as tiie rest, shall come 

For our own spoils, yet not so that with them 

We may again be clad ; for what a man 

Takes from himself it b not just he have. 

Here we perforce shall drag them ; and throughout 

The dismal glade our bodies shall be hung. 

Each on the wild thorn of his wretched shade." 

Attentive yet to listen to the trunk 
We stood, expecting farther speech, when us 
A noise surprised ; as when a man perceives 
The wild boar and the hunt approach his place 
Of station'd watch, who of the beasts and boughs 
Loud rustling round him hears. And lo ! there came 
Two naked, torn with briers, in headlong flight. 
That they before them broke each fan o th' wood 
" Haste now," the foremost cried, " now haste thee 
The other, as seem'd, impatient of delay, [de( th !" 
Exclaiming, " Lano !' not so bent for speed 
Thy sinews, in the lists of Toppo's field." 
And then, for that perchance no longer breath 
Sufficed him, of himself and of a bush 
One group he made. Behind them was the wood 
Full of black female mastifli, gaunt and fleet. 
As greyhounds that have newly slipp'd the leash. 
On him, who squatted down, they stuck their fangh 
And having rent him piecemeal, bore away 
The tortured limbs. My guide then seized my hand, 
And led me to the thicket, which in vain 
Moum*d through its bleeding wounds : " O Giacomn 
Of Sant' Andrea !' what avails it thee," 
It cried, " that of me thou hast made thy screen ? 

Emeh fan o* tA* loood.] Hence perhaps Milton : 
Leaves and fuming rills, Aurora's fan. P. Z.., b. v. G. 

Some have translated "rosta,** *' impediment," instead of 

> Laitio.\ Lano, a Siennese, who, being reduced by prodi- 
gality to a state of extreme want, found his existence no longel 
supportable ; and having been sent by his countrymen on a 
military expedition to assist the Florentines against the Ar»- 
lini, took that opportunity of exposing himself to certain death, 
in the engagement which took place at Toppo near Arezzo 
dee G. VUUuii, Hist., Ub. 7, c. cxix. 

• ■ O Oiaeomo 

OfSani* Andrea I] Jacopo da Sant* Andrea, a Pads an 
who, having wasted his property in the rjost wanton acts oi 
proAi^iin, killed himsell in despair. 




For thy ill life, what blame on me recoils ?" 

When o'er it he had paused, my master sjiake : 
*< Say who wast tnou, tnat at so many points 
Breathest out with blood thy lamentaUe speech ? 
He answer'd : " O ye spirits ! arrived in time 
To spy Ihe shameful havoc that from me 
My leaves hath sever'd thus, gather them up, 
And at the foot of their sad parent-tree 
Carefully lay them. In that city* I dwelt. 
Who for the Baptist her first patron changed. 
Whence he for this shall cease not with his art 
To work her wo : and if there still remained not 
On Amo's psissage some faint glimpse of him, 
Those citizens, who rear'd once more her walls 
Upon the ashes left by Attila, 
Had labor'd without profit of their toil. 
I slung the fatal noose^ from my own roof. 



They arrive at the beginning of the third of those compart 
ments into which this seventh circle is divided. It is a 
plain of dry and hot sand, where three Idnds of violence 
are panished ; namely, against God, against Nature, and 
against Art; and those who have thus sinned, are tor 
mented by flakes of fire, which are etemallv showering 
down upon them. Among the violent against God is 
found Capaneus, whose b^phemies they hear. Next, 
turning to the left along the forest of self-slayers, and 
having Journeyed a little onwards, they meet with a 
streamlet of blood that issues from the forest and tra 
verses the sandy plain. Here Vii^ll speaks to our Poel 
of a huge ancient statue that stands within Mount Ida 

1 In that eity.\ "I was an inhabitant of Florence, that 
city which changed her first patron Mars for St John the 
Baptist ; for which reason the vengeance of the deity thus 
slighted will never be appeased ; and if some remains of his 
statue were not still visible on the bridge over the Amo, she 
would have been already levelled to the ground ; and thus 
the citizens, who raised her again- from the ashes to which 
Attila had reduced her, would have labored in vain.*' See 
Paradiis, Canto zvt. 44. 

The relic of antiquity, to which the superstition of Florence 
attached so high an importance, was carried away by a flood, 
that destroyed the bridge on which it stood, in the year 1337, 
but without the ill eflfects that were apprehended firom the 
loss of their fiincied Palladium. 

9 I tlung the fatal noose.] We are not informed who thii* 
itiiclde was ; some calling him Korco de* Mozzi, and othci« 
Lotto degll Agli. 

i-:i5 HELL. Canto XIV 119 

in Crete, from a fissnre in which statue theie is a Jrip 
plug of tears, fVom which the said streamlet, tngethe. 
with the three other infernal rivers, are formed. 

Scon as the charity of native land * 

Wrought in my bosom, I the scatter'd leaves 
Collected, and to him restored, who now 
Was hoarse with utterance. To the limit thence 
We came, which from the third the second round 
Divides, and where of justice is displayed 
C<mtrivance horrible. Things then first seen 
Clearlier to manifest, I tell how next 
A. plain we reached, that from its steril bed 
Each plant repell'd. The mournful wood waves round 
Its garland on all sides, as round the wood 
Spreads the sad foss. There, on the very edge. 
Our steps we stay'd. It was an area wide 
Of arid sand and thick, resembling most 
The soil that erst by Cato's foot^ was trod. [fearM 
Vengeance of Heaven ! Oh ! how shouldst thou be 
By all, who read what here mine eyes beheld. 

Of naked spirits many a flock I saw. 
All weeping piteously, to diiTerent laws 
Subjected ; for on the earth some lay supine. 
Some crouching close were seated, others paced 
Incessantly around ; the latter tribe 
More numerous, those fewer who beneath 
The torment lay, but louder in their grief. 

O'er all the sand fell slowly wafting down 
Dilated flakes of fire,* as flakes of snow 
On Alpine summit, when the wind is hushM. 
As, in the torrid Indian clime,' the son 
Of Ammon saw, upon his warrior band 
Descending, solid flames, that to the ground 
Came down ; whence he bethought him with his trooiJ 
To trample on the soil ; for easier thus 
Tlie vapor was extinguished, while alone : 
So fell the eternal fiery flood, wherewith 
The marl glow'd underneath, as under stove* 

■ ■■■■IIIIMI — 

i By Colo's foat.\ See Lucan, Phars., lib. ix. 

* DUaUdfiaket of fire.'] Compare Tasso, 6 L., c. x St. 61. 

Al fin giungemmo al loco, ove gi& scese 
Fiamma del cielo in diiatate talde, 
E di natnra vendicb l^offese 
Sovra la gente in mal oprar si salde. 

* A$ in the torrid Indian clime.'] Landino refers to Albeitoi 
Maenus for the circumstance here alluded to. 

Jl$ under atove.] So Frezzi : 

SJ rorael' esca al foco del f »cile. Lib i. cap. 17. 

120 THE VISION. 311-70 

The viands, doubly to augment the pain. 
Unceasing was the play of wretched hands, 
Now this, now that way glancing, to shake off 
The heat, still falling fresh. I thus began : 
** Instructor ! thou who all things overcomest, 
Except the hardy demons that rush'd forth 
To stop our entrance at the gate, say who 
Is yon huge spirit, that, as seems, heeds not 
The burning, but lies writhen m proud scorn. 
As by the sultry tempest immatured 1" 

Straight he himself, who was aware I ask'd 
My guide of him, exclaim'd : " Such as I was 
When living, dead such now I am. If Jove 
Weary his workman out, from whom in ire 
He snatch'd the lightnings, that at my last day 
Transfix'd me ; if the rest he weary out. 
At their black smithy laboring by turns, ' 
In Mongibello,' while he cries aloud, 
' Help, help, good Mulciber !' as erst he cried 
In the Phlegreean warfare ; and the bolts 
Launch he, full aim'd at me, with all his might : 
He never should enjoy a sweet revenge." 

Then thus my guide, in accent higher raise<l 
Than I before had heard him : " Capaneus ! 
Thou art more punishM, in that this thy pride 
Lives yet unquench'd : no torment, save thy rag^, 
Were to thy fury pain proportioned full." 

Next turning round to me, with milder lip 
He spake : " This of the seven kings was one,' 
Who girt the Theban walls with siege, and held, 
As still he seems to hold, God in disdain, 
And sets his high omnipotence at naught. 
But, as I told him, his despiteful mood 
Is ornament well suits the breast that wears it. 
Follow me now ; and look thou set not yet 

1 In Mongibello.] 

More hot than iEtn* or flaming Mongibeil. 

Spensetj F. Q., h. ii. c. ix. st. SO 

Siccome alia fucina ia Mongibello 
Fabrica tuono 11 demonio Vulcanu, 
Batte folgori e focn col martello, 
E con esso i nnol fabri Ib ogni mano. 

Bemij Orl. Inruy lib. i. c. xvi. 8t ^1. 

See Vlrg.^n.,lib vlii. 416. It would be endless to refer M 
parallel passages in the Greek writers. 

* This ofihe seven kingt teas one.] Compare ^sch. Sevei 
fhiefs, 435. Enrlpides, Phoen., 1179, and Btattns, Theb., Ub 
I S31 


Thy foot in the hot sand, but to the wood 

Keep ever close." Silently on we passed 

To where there gushes from the forest's bound 

A. Jttle brook, whose crimsonM wave yet lifts. 

My hair with horror. As the rill, that runs 

From Bulicame,^ to be portion'd out 

Amon}^ the sinful women, so ran this 

Down through the sand ; its bottom and each bank 

Stone>built, and either margin at its side, 

VVhereon I straight perceived our passage lay. 

" Of all that I have shown thee, since that gate 
We enter'd first, whose threshold is to none 
Denied, naught else so worthy of regard. 
As is this river, has thine eye discem'd. 
O'er which the flaming volley all is quench'd." 

So spake my guide ; and I him thence besought 
That having given me appetite to know. 
The food he too would give, that hunger craved. 

" In midst of ocean," forthwith he began, 
* A desolate country lies, which Crete is named : 
Under whose monarch,^ in old times, the world 
Lived pure and chaste. A mountain rises there. 
Called Ida, joyous once with leaves and streams. 
Deserted now like a forbidden thing. 
It was the spot which Rhea, Saturn's spouse, 
Chose for the secret cradle of her son ; 
And better to conceal him, drown'd in shouts 
His infant cries. Within the mount, upright 
An ancient form there stands, and huge, that turns 
His shoulders towards Damiata ; and at Rome, 
As in his mirror, looks. Of finest gold 
His head' is shaped, pure silver are the breast 

1 Btdieame.] A warji medicinal spring near Viterbo ; the 
waters of which, as Landino and Vellutelli affirm, passed by 
a place of ill fame. Ventnri, with less probability, coined* 
lures that Dante would imply that it was the scene of miwh 
ttcentioas merriment among those who irequented Its baths 

* Under whose monarcfi.] 

Oedo pndicitiam Satnmo rege moratam 

In terris. Juv. Satir. vL 

(n Saturn's reign, at Nature's early btrth, 

There was a thing calPd chastity on earth. Drydtn, 

s HU kead.] This is imitated by Frezxi, in the Qoadrireglok 
Jo. iv. cap. 14: 

La statua grande vidi in un gran piano, &c. 

'This image's head was of fine gold, his breast and hb 
inns of silver, his belly and his thighs of brass : 
**Mis legs of iron, his feet pari of iron and part of clay." 

Daniel, ch. li. 33. 33. 


133 THE VISION. 103- lA 

4nd arms, thence to the middle is of brass, 
And downward all beneath well-temper*d steel, 
Save the right foot of potter's clay, on which 
Than on the other more erect he stands. 
Each part, except the gold, is rent throughout ; 
And from the fissure tears distil, which join'd 
Penetrate to that cave. They in their couiBe* 
Thus far precipitated down the rock. 
Form Acheron, and Styx, and Phlegethon ; 
Then by this straiten'd channel passing hence 
Beneath, e'en to the lowest depth of all, 
Form there Cocytus, of whose lake (thyself 
Shalt see it) I here give thee no account." 

Then I to him : " If from our world this sluice 
Be thus derived ; wherefore to us but now 
Appears it at this edge?" He straight replied: 
" The place, thou know'st, is round ; and though great 
Thou have already pass'd, still to the left [psul 

Descending to the nethermost, not yet 
Hast thou the circuit made of the whole orb. 
Wherefore, if aught of new to us appear. 
It needs not bring up wonder in thy looks." 

Then I again inquired : " Where flow the stream* 
Of Phlegethon and Lethe ? for of one 
Thou telPst not ; and the other, of that shower. 
Thou say'st, is form'd." He answer thus retum'd 
** Doubtless thy questions all well pleased I hear 
Yet the red seething wave^ might have resolved 
One thou proposest. Lethe thou shalt see. 
But not within this hollow, in the place 
Whither,^ to lave themselves, the spirits go. 
Whose blame hath been by penitence removed." 
He added : " Tune is now we quit the wood. 
Look thou my steps pursue : the margins givt 
Safe passage, unimpeded by the flames ; 
For over them all vapor is extinct." 



Taking their way upon one of the mounds by whieh Qm 
streamlet, spoken of in tlie last Canto, was embanked, and 
having gone so far that they could no longer have diseened 

1 T%e red seething wave.] Tills he might have known 
* Tfhither.] On the other side of Pnix&tory 

1«L HELL, Canto XV 123 

the forest if they bad tamed round to look for it, th«y med 
a troop of spirits that come along the sand by the side of tho 
pier. These are they who have done violence to Nature : 
and among them Dante distlngaishes Bmnetto Latini, wh: 
had been formerly his master ; with whom, turning a littl» 
* backward, he holds a discourse which occupies the remaiu 
der of this Canta 

Om of the solid margins bears us now 
Envelop'd in the mist, that, from the stream 
Arising, hovers o'er, and saves from fire 
Both piers and water. As the Flemings rear 
Their mound, 'twixt Ghent and Bruges, to chase Txtcl 
The ocean, fearing his tumultuous tide 
That drives toward them ; or the Paduans theirs 
Along the Brent&, to defend their towns 
And castles, ere the genial warmth be felt 
On ChiarentanaV top ; such were the mounds. 
So framed, though not in height or bulk to these 
Made equal, by the master, whosoe'er 
He was, that raised them here. We from the wood 
Were now so far removed, that turning round 
I might not have discem'd it, when we met 
A troop of spirits, who came beside the pier. 

They each one eyed us, as at eventide 
One eyes another under a new moon ; 
And toward us sharpened their sight, as keen 
As an old tailor at his needle's eye.* 

Thus narrowly explored by all the tribe, 
I was agnized of one, who by the skirt 
Caught me, and cried, " What wonder have we here V 

And I, when he to me outstretch'd his arm. 
Intently fiz'd my ken on his parch'd looks. 
That, although smirch'd with fire, they hinder'd not 
But I remember'd him ; and towards his face 
My hand inclining, answer'd, *' Ser Brunette !' 

OtiarentoMa.'] A part of the Alps where the Brenta rises ; 
ivhleh river is much swollen as soon as the snow begins to dis* 
lolve on the mountains 

s J§9 an old tailor at his netdle'a ege.} In Fasio degli Uber 
il's DIttamondo, 1. iv. cap. 4, the tailor is introduced in a aha 
Ue scarcely less picturesque : 

Perchd tanto mi stringe a questo pnnto 
Ia Innga tema, ch* io fo come il sarto 
Che quando affietta spesso parsa 11 punto. 

' Brunetto.] "Ser Brunetto, a Florentine, the secretary 
or chancellor of the city, and Dante*s preceptor, hath letl 
OS a work so little read, that both the subject of it and the 
language of it have been mistaken. It is in the French 
spoken in the reign of Bt Louis, under the title of Tretor ; 
•nd contains a species of philosophical course of lectured 


And are ye here ?" He thus to me : " My sou ! 
Ob let it not displease thee, if Brunetto 

divided into theory and practice, or, as hi expre&ses it, ut. 4 
niehaussement des ehoses divineM et humaine*,''^ &C. Sir 11 
Clayton*8 Translation of Tenhove*8 Memoirs of the Medici, 
vol. L ch. 11. p. 104. The TVeaor has never been printed in 
the original language. There is a fine mannscript of it in the 
British Mosenm, with an illuminated portrait of Brunetto in 
his study, prefixed. Mns. Brit. MSS. 17. £. 1, Tesor. It Ls 
divided into four books : the first, on Cosmogony and Theol' 
ogy ; the second, a translation of Aristotle*s Ethics ; the thliU, 
on Virtues and Vices ; the fourth, on Rhetoric. For an in- 
teresting memoir relating to this work, see Hist, de TAcad. 
des Inscriptions, tom. vil. 296. 

His Tegoretto, one of the earliest productions of Italian 
poetry, is a curious work, not unlike the writings of Chaucei 
in style and numbers ; though Bembo remarks, that his pupil, 
however largely he had stolen from it, could not have much 
cnriclied himself. As it is, perhaps, but little known, 1 will 
here add a slight sketch of it. 

Brunetto describes himself as returning from an embassy to 
the king of Spain, on which he had been sent by the Guelph 
party from Florence. On the plain of Roncesvalles he nieeki 
a scholar on a bay mule — 

— — un scolaio 
Sur un muletto baio. 

There a scholar I espied 
On a bay mule that did ride— 

who tells him that the Gnelfi are driven out of the city 
with great loss. Struck with grief at these mournful tidings, 
and musing with nis head bent downwards, he loses his 
road, and wanders into a wood. Here Nature, whose flgiiK 
Is described with sublimity, appears, and discloses ro nini 
the secrets of her operations. After this, he wanders liitn a 

Deh che paese fieru 
frovai in quella parte. 

Che f'io sapessi d'arto 
Quivi mi bisognava. 

Che quanto plu mirava 
Piu mi parea selvaggio. 

Quivi non a viagglo, 
Qnivi non a persone, 

Q,uivi non a magione. 
Non bestia non nccello, 

Non flume non ruscello, 
Non formica non mosca, 

Non cosa eh*io conosca. 
Ed io pensando forte 

Pottai ben della morte, 
E non ^ maravlglia, 

Che ben trecento miglla, 
Dnrava d*ogni lato, 

Quel paese suogato. 

Well-away! what fearftil nncc^l 
In that sava^ part I ftwiw. 

a-a. HELL, Cant«» XV. 125 

Latini but a little space with tiiee 

Tnia back, and leave his fellows to proceed " 

If of art I aught could ken. 
Well behoofved me use it then. 
More I look*d, the mora I deem*d 
That it wild and desert seem*d. 
Not a road was there in sight, 
Not a house, and not a wight ; 
Not a bird, and not a bmte, 
Not a rill, and not a not ; 
Not an emmet, not a fly. 
Not a thing I mote descry. 
Sore I doubted therewithal 
Whether death would me befitll : 
Nor was wonder, for around 
Full three htudied miles of ground 
Right across on every side 
Lay the desert bare and wide 

—and proceeds on his way, under the protertion of a banner 
with wliich Nature had furnished him, till on the third day 
he finds himself in a pleasant champain, where are assem- 
bled many emperors, kings, and sages : 

Un gran piano giocondo 
Lo piu gi^ del mondo 
£ lo piu degnitoso. 

Wide and far the champain lay, 
None in all the earth so gay. 

ft is the habitation of Virtue and her daughters, the four 
Cardinal Virtues. Here Brunetto sees also Courtesy, Bounty, 
Loyaltj, and Prowess, and hears the instructions they give 
to a knight, which occupy about a fourth part of the poem. 
Leaving this territory, he passes over valleys, mountains, 
woods, forests, and bridges, till he arrives in a beautif^il val- 
ley covered with flowers on all sides, and the richest in the 
world ; but which was continually shifting its appearance 
from a round figure to a square, from obscurity to light, and 
from popnlousness to solitude. This Is the region of Pleas- 
ure, or Cnpld, who is accompanied by four ladies. Love, 
H<^, Fear, and Desire. In one part of it he meets with 
Ovid, and is instructed by him how to conquer the passion 
of love, and to escape firom that place. After his escape, he 
makes his confession to a friar, and then returns to the 
finest of visions ; and, aseendinc^a mountain, meets with 
Plolraay, a venerable old man* Here the narrative breaks 
off The poem ends, as it began, with an address to Rustico 
di FUippo^ on whom he lavishes every sort of praise. 

It has been observed, that Dante derived the idea of open- 
ing his poem by describing himself as lost in a wood, from 
the Tet&retto of his master. I know not whether it has been 
lemarked, that the crime of usury is branded by both these 
loels as ofbnsive to Grod and Nature :— 

Un altro, che non cnra 
Di Dio ne di Nature, 
Si diventa usuriere. 

One, that holdeth not in mind 
Ijaw of Ood or Natnre*s kind. 
Tkiketh him to usury. 

126 THE VISION. aa-oB 

I thus to him replied : " Much as I ctai, 
I thereto pray thee ; and if thou be willing 
That I here seat me with thee, I consent ; 
His leave, with whom I journey, first obtained." 

" O son !" said he, " whoever of this throng 
One instant stops, lies then a hundred yeaie, 
No fan to ventilate him, when the fire 
Smites sorest. Pass thou therefore on I dose 
Will at thy garments walk, and then rejoin 
My troop, who go mourning their endless doom *' * 

I dared not fi^m the path descend to tread 
On equal ground with bum, but held my head 
Bent down, as one who walks in reverent guisn. 

" What chance or destmy," thus he began, 
" Ere tne last day, conducts thee here below ? 
A.nd who is this that shows to thee the way?" 

" There up aloft," I answer'd, " in the life 
Serene, I wandered in a valley lost. 
Before mine age* had to its fulness reach'd. 
But yester-mom I left it : then once more 
Into that vale returning, hun I met ; 
And by this path homeward he leads me back." 

" If thou," he answer'd, " follow but thy star. 
Thou canst not miss at last a glorious haven ; 
Unless in fairer days my judgment err'd. 
And if my fate so early had not chanced, 
feeing the heavens thus bounteous to thee, I 
Had gladly given thee comfort in thy work. 
But that ungrateful and malignant race. 
Who m old times came down from Fesole,^ 

—or that the sin for which Branetto is condemned by his 
pupil is mentioned in his Tesoretto with great horror. Bat 
see what is said on this subject by Perticari, Degli Scrittorl 
del Tracento, 1. i. e. iv. Dante's twenty-fifth sonnet is a Jo- 
cose one, addressed to Branetto, of which a translation is in- 
serted in the Xafe of Dante prefixed. He died in 13&5. G 
Villani sums np his account of him by saying, that he wa« 
himself a worldly man ; but that he was the first to refine 
the Florentines nom their grossness, and to instract them in 
speaking properly, and in conductii^ the afiain of the r»- 
(Aiblic on principles of policy. 

1 Before mine a^e.] On the whole, Vellutello*s explana 
ion of this is, I think, most satisfiictory. He supposes It m; 
nean, ** before the appointed end of his life was arriveo^ 
.lefore his days were accomplished." Lombardi, conclndtni 
Jiat the fulness of a^e must be the same as ** the midway of 
1\\b our morta« life," (see Canto i. v. 1,) understands that h« 
fiad lojt himself in the wood before that time, and that he 
then only discovered his having gone astray. 

* Who in old times came down^rom Roole,] See G. VUUnI 
Uist., lib iv. cap. v. ; and Macchiav. Hist, iif Flor., b. IL 

i3-l0S HELL, Canto XV. 127 

A.y and still smack of their rough raountain-illnt* 

Will for thy good deeds show thee enmity. 

Nor wonder ; for among ill-savor'd crabs 

It suits not the sweet fig-tree lay her fruit 

Old fame reports them in the world for blind>' 

Covetous, envious, proud. Look to it well : 

Take heed thou cleanse thee of their ways. For thee. 

Thy fortune hath such honor in reserve. 

That thou by either party shalt be craved 

With hunger keen : but be the fresh herb far 

From the goat's tooth. The herd of Fesole 

May of themselves make litter, not touch the plant;. 

If any such yet spring on their rank bed, 

In which the holy seed revives, transmitted 

From those true Romans, who still there remained, 

When it was made the nest of so much ill." 

" Were all my wish fulfilled," I straight replied, 
" Thou from the confines of man's nature yet 
Hadst not been driven forth ; for in my mind 
Is fix'd, and now strikes full upon my heart. 
The dear, benign, paternal image, such 
As thine was, when so lately thou didst teach me 
The way for man to win eternity : 
And how I prized the lesson, it behooves, 
That, long as life endures, my tongue should speak 
What of my fate thou tell'st, that write I down ; 
And, with another text' to comment on. 
For her I keep it, the celestial dame, 
Who will know all, if I to her arrive. 
This only would I have thee clearly note : 
That, so my conscience have no plea against me. 
Do fortime as she list, I stand prepared. 
Not new or strange such earnest to mine ear. 
Speed Fortune then her wheel, as likes her best ; 
The clown his mattock ; all things have their course ^ 

Thereat my sapient guide upon his right 
Tum'd himself back, then look'd at me, and spake 
■' He listens to good purpose who takes note." 

I not the less still on my way proceed. 
Discoursing with Brunetto, and inquire 
Who are most known and chief among his tribe. 

- - - - - , ^ 

> Blind.] It is said that tlie Florentines were thus called, 
'A consequence of their having bo3n deceived by a shalloi* 
artifice practised on them by the Pisans, in the year 1117 
Bee 6. Villani, lib. iv. cap. xxx. 

s fyUh another text.) He refers to the predicl'ion of Fori 
MUSf in Canto x. 


" To know of some is well ;" he thus repliec, 
"* But of the rest silence may best beseem. 
Time would not serve us for report so long. 
In brief I tell thee, that all these were clerks, 
Men of great learning and no less renown, 
By one same sin polluted in the world. 
With them is Priscian ;' and Accoiso's son, 
Francesco,' herds among that wretched throng: 
And, if the wish of so impure a blotch 
Possessed thee, him' thou also might'st have seen. 
Who by the servants' servant* was transferr'd 
From Amo's seat to Bacchiglione, where 
His ill-strain'd nerves he left. I more would add* 
But must from farther speech and onward way 
Alike desist ; for yonder I behold 
A mist new-risen on the sandy plain. 
A company, with whom I may not sort. 
Approaches. I commend my Treasure to thee/ 
Wherein I yet survive ; my sole request." 

This said, he tum'd, and seem'd as one of thoe^ 
Who o'er Verona's champain try their speed 
For the green mantle ; and of them he seem'd, 
<Vot he who loses but who gains the prize. 

^ Priacian.] There is no reason to believe, as the coui 
mentators observe, that the grammarian of this namo was 
stained with the vice imputed to him ; and we must there- 
fore suppose that Dante pats the individual for the species, 
, and implies the frequency of the crime among those who 
abused the opportunities which the education of youth af- 
forded them, to so abominable a purpose. 

* Franeese0.] Accorso, a Florentine, Interpreted the Ro 
man law at Bologna, and died in 1239, at the age of 78. His 
authority was so great as to exceed that of all the other in- 
terpreters, so that Cino da Pistota termed him the Idol of 
Advocates. His sepulchre, and that of his son Francesco 
here spoken of, is at Bologna, with this short epitaph : *' Se- 
polcruni Accursii Glossatoris et Francisci ejus Filii.** See 
Guidi Panziroll, De Claris Legum Interpretibus, lib. ii. cap. 
xxix. Lips. 4to. 1731. 

* Ifm.] Andrea de* Moud, who, that his scaadaloiu lift 
might be less exposed to observation, was translated elthet 
9y Nicolas III. or Boniface VIII. from the see of Florence tc 
that of Vieenza, through which passes the river Bacchlglionb 
At the latter of these places he died. 

* ITU servanU* servant.] Servo de'servi. SoAr)0sto,Sat.iii 

Degli servi 
lo sia il gran servo. 

* feemmend my Treasure to theeJ] Bnuie;to*s grea: wort 
the TVetor: 

Sieti raccomandato M mlo Tesoro. 

ik) Glnsto de* Conti, in his Bella Mano, Son. *' Occhi T 
Siavi raccomandato il mio Tesom 

j.«a. HELL, Canto XVI. 129 



Joomeying along the pier, which crosses the sand they an 
now so near the end of it as to hear the noise of tlie 
stream &lling into the eighth circle, when they meet tht 
spirits of three military men . who jndging Itente, frcm* 
his dress, to be a countryman of theirs, entreat him to 
stop. He complies, and spealcs with them. The two 
Poets then reach the place where the water descends, 
being the termination of this tliird compartment in the 
seventh circle; and here Virgil having thrown down into 
the hollow a cord, wherewith Dante was girt, they be* 
hold at that signal a monstrous and horrible figure com* 
swimming up to them. 

Now came I where the water's din was heard, 
As down it fell into the other round, 
Resounding like the hum of swarming bees : 
When forth together issued from a troop. 
That pass'd beneath the fierce tormenting storm, 
Three spirits, running swift. They towards us came 
And each one cried aloud, " Oh I do thou stay. 
Whom, by the fashion of thy garb, we deem 
To be some inmate of our evil land." 

Ah me ! what wounds I mark'd upon their limbe^ 
Recent and old, inflicted by the flames ! 
E'en the remembrance of them grieves me yet. 

Attentive to their cry, my teacher paused. 
And tum'd to me his visage, and then spake : 
" Wait now : our courtesy these merit well : 
And were 't not for the nature of the place, 
Whence glide the fiery darts, I should have said. 
That haste had better suited thee than them." 

They, when we stopp'd, resumed their ancient w aU 
And, soon as they had reach'd us, all the three 
Whirl'd round together in one restless wheel 
As niked champions, smear'd with slippery oil, 
Are wont, intent, to watch their place of hold 
And vantage, ere in closer strife they meet ; 
Thus each one, as he wheel'd, his countenance 
At me directed, so that opposite 
The neck moved ever to the twinkling feet 

" If wo of this unsound and dreary waste," 
Thus one began, " added to our sad cheer 
Thus peel*d with flame, do call forth scorn on le 
And our entreaties, let our great renown 
Incline thee to inform us who thou art. 
That dost imprint, with living feet unharm'd. 

130 THE VISIUW. 34-41. 

The B^U of Hell. He, in whose tracK tl'ou seest 
My steps pursuing, naked though he be 
And reft of all, was of more high estate 
Than thou believest ; grandchild of the chaste 
Gualdrada,^ him they Guidoguerra call'd. 
Who in his lifetime many a noble act^ 
Achieved, both by his wisdom and his sword. 
The other, next to me that beats the semd, 

i Oualdrada.\ Gualdrada was the daughter of Bellindoiu 
Berti, of whom mention is made in the Paradise, Canto xv 
and xvi. Ho was of the famiiy of Ravignani, a branch of 
the Adimari. The Emperor Otho IV. being at a festival in 
Fiorence, where Gualdrada was present, was struck with hei 
beauty ; and inquiring who she was, was answered by Bel- 
lincione, that she was the daughter of one who, if it was his 
majesty's pleasure, would malce her admit the honor of his 
salute. On overhearing this, she arose from her seat, and 
blushing, in an animated tone of voice, desired her father 
that he woald not be so liberal in his oilers, for that no man 
should ever be allowed that freedom except him who should 
be her lawfal husband. The Emperor was not less delighted 
by her resolute modesty than he had before been by the 
loveliness of her person ; and calling to him Guide, one of his 
harons, gave her to him in marriage ; at the same time rais 
ing him to the ranlc of a count, and bestowing on her the 
whole of Casentino, and a part of the territory of Romagna, 
as her portion. Two sons were the of&pring of this union, 
Goglielmo and Ruggieri ; the latter of whom was father of 
Guidoguerra, a man of great military skill and prowess ; who, 
at the head of four hundred Florentines of the Gaelph party, 
was signal iy Instrumental to the victory obtained at Bene 
vento, by Charles of Anjon, over Manfredi, King of Naples, 
in 1265. One of the consequences of this victory was the 
expulsion of the Ghibellini, and the re-establishment of the 
Guelfi at Florence. 

Borghini, (Disc, deir Orig. di Firenze, ediz. 1755, page 6,) 
as cited by Lombard!, endeavors, by a comparison of dates, 
to throw discredit on the above relation uf Gualdrada's an- 
swer to her father, which is found in G. Villani, lib. v. cap. 37 : 
and Lombardi adds, that if it had been true, Bellincione 
would have been worthy of a place in the eighteenth Canto 
of Hell, rather than of being mentioned with praise in the 
Paradise : to which it may be answered, that the proposal of 
the father, however irreconcilable it may be to onr notiona 
of modem refinement, might possibly in those times have 
been considered rather as a spKHtive sally than as a serioaa 
exposure of his daughter's innocence. The incident is n- 
lated in a manner very unfavorable to Berti, by E^neesoo 
Bansovino, in one of his Novelle, Inserted by Mr. Thomai 
Roseoe in his entertaining selection from the ItsiliBn Novel 
isti, V Ul. p 137. 

* Jtfdiiy a noble act.] 

Molto egll opib col senno e con la mano. 

TVwM, O. X., & 1. 81. L 

0-77. HELL, Canto XVI. 131 

Is Aldobrandl,' name deserving well, 
In the upper world, of honor ; and myself, 
Who m this torment do partake with them, 
Am Rusticucci,* whom, past donbt, my wifef 
Of savage temper, more than aught bc«de 
Hath to this evil bi ought" If from the fire 
I had been sheltered, down amidst them straight 
I then had cast me ; nor my guide, I deem. 
Would have restraint my going : but that fear 
Of the dire burning vanquish'd the desire. 
Which made me eager of their wish'd embrace. 

I then began : " Not scorn, but grief much more 
Snch as long time alone can cure, your doom 
Fix'd deep within me, soon as this my lord 
Spake words, whose tenor taught me to expect 
That such a race, as ye are, was at hand. 
I am a countryman of yours, who still 
ASectionate have uttered, and have heard 
Your deeds and names renown'd. Leaving the gall, 
For the sweet fruit I go, that a sure guide 
Hath promised to me. But behooves, that far 
As to the centre first I downward tend." 

" So may long space thy spirit guide thy limbs,** 
He answer strsught retum'd ; " and so thy fame 
Shine bright when thou art gone, as thou shalt te!l, 
If courtesy and valor, as they wont, 
Dwell in our city, or have vanish'd clean : 
For one amidst us late condemn'd to wail, 
Borsiere,' yonder walking with his peers. 
Grieves us no little by the news he brings." 

" An upstart multitude and sudden gains, 
Pride and excess, O Florence ! have in thee 
Ilngender'd, so that now in tears thou moum'st- !" 

Thus cried I, with my face upraised, and they 
All three, who for an answer took my words, 
liook'd at each other, as men look when truth 

1 Jtldobrandi.] Tegghiaio Aldobrandi was of the noble 
%mily of Adimari, and much esteemed for his military talents. 
Be endeavored to dissuade the Fiorentines from the attack 
which they meditated against the Siennese ; and the rejee 
lion of his coansel occasioned the memorable defeat which 
the former sustained at Montaperto, and the consequent ban- 
ishment of the Gnelfl from Florence. 

s RusUeueci.] Giacopo Rnsticucci, a Florentine, remark 
able for his opulence and the generosity of his «pirlt. 

* Borsiere.) Gnglielmo Borsiere, another Florentine, whom 
Bnecaccio, in a story which he relates of him, terms "a mao 
of ronrteous and elegant manners, and of great readiness in 
soQvervitior.** Dee. Oiom., i. Jfov. 8. 

132 THE VISIOiN. 78- m 

Comes to their ear. ** If at so little cost,"^ 
They all at once rejoin'd, *' thou satisfy 
Others who question thee, O happy thou ' 
Gifted with words so apt to speak thy thought. 
Wherefore, if thou escape this darksome clime> 
Returning to hehold the radiant stars, 
When thou with pleasure shalt retrace the past/ 
See that of us thou speak among mankind." 

This said, they broke the circle, and so swift 
Fled, that as pinions seem'd their nimble feet. 

Not in so short a time might one have said 
' Amen," as they had vanished. Straight my guide 
Pursued his track. I followed : and small space 
Had we pass'd onward, when the water's sound 
Was now so near at hand, that we had scarce 
Heard one another's speech for the loud din. 

E'en as the river," that first holds its course 
Unmingled, from the Mount of Vesulo, 
On the left side of Apenniue, toward 
The east, which Acquacheta higher up 
They call, ere it descend into the vale. 
At Forli,* by that name no longer known, 
Rebellows o'er Saint Benedict, roU'd on 
From the Alpine summit down a precipice. 
Where space* enough to lodge a thousand spreads : 
Thus downward from a craggy steep we found 

1 j9t 90 little cobLI They intimate to our Poet (as Lorn- 
bardi well observes) the inconveniences to which his freedom 
of speech was about to expose him in the future course of 
his life. 

3 When thou toith pleasure shalt retrace the past.] 

Q,nando U gioverd dicere io fui. 

Bo Tasso, G. L., c. XV. St. 3b: 

Quando mi gioverk narrar altrui 
Le novitd vedute, e dire ; lo fui. 

* E'en as the river.} He compares the fall of Phlegethon 
to that of the Montone (a river in Romagna) from the Apen 
aine above the Abbey of St. Benedict. All the other streams, 
that rise between the sources of the Po and the Montone, and 
foil ftom the left side of the Apennine, join the Po, and ac 
company it to the sea. 

* At Forli.\ Because there it loses the name of Acqaa 
':heta, and takes that of Montone. 

* Where space.] Either becausr the abbey wa^i capable of 
containing more than those who occupied it, or because (says 
Ijandino) the lords of that territory, as Boccaccio related on 
the authority of the abbot, had intended to build a castle neat 
the water-fall and to collect witi' in its walls the pc^ilotioc 
of the neighboring villages 

tM-lS4 HELL, Canto XVL 1S8 

That this dark wave resounded, roaring loud> 
So that the ear its clamor soon had stonn'd. 

I had a cord' that braced my girdle round, 
Wherewith I erst had thought fast bound to take 
The painted leopard. This when I had all 
Unloosened from me (so my master bade) 
I gathered np, and stretch'd it forth to him. 
Then to the right he tum'd, and from the brink 
Standing few paces distant, cast it down 
Into the deep abyss. '* And somewhat strangcs'* 
Thus to myself I spake, " signal so strange 
Betokens, which my guide with earnest eye 
1 hus follows." Ah ! what caution must men use 
With those who look not at the deed alone, 
Bat spy into the thoughts with subtle skill.' 

** Quickly shall come," he said, ** what I expect ; 
Thme eye discover quickly that, whereof 
Thy thought is dreaming." Ever to that truth,' 
Which but the semblance of a falsehood wears, 
A man, if possible, should bar his lip ; 
Since, although blameless, he incurs reproach. 

1 A eord.} This passage, as it is confessed by Landino, 
involves a fiction sufficiently olisrare. His own attempt to 
unravel it does not mncli lessen the difficulty. That whieh 
Lombardi has made is something better. It is believed that 
our Poet, in the earlier part of his life, had entered into the 
OTder of St Francis. By observing the rules of that profes- 
sion, he had designed to mortify his carnal appetites, or, as 
he expresses it, ** to take the painted leopard** (that animal, 
which, as we have seen In a note to the first Canto, repre- 
sented Pleasure) *' with this cord." This part of the habit he 
is now desired by Virgil to take off; and it is thrown down 
the gulf, to allure Geryon to them with the expectation of 
canying down one who had cloaked his Iniquities under the 
garb of penitence and self-mortification ; and thus (to aiqily 
to Dante on this occasion the words of Milton) 

He, as Franciscan, thought to pass disguised 
> But spf into tki thought* with nitle okiil.] 

Sorrise Uranio, che per entro vede 
Gli altrui pensier col senno. 

Jlf«nzMt. Sonetto. Mentre to Ooniua, 

s JSvsr to that tmlh.] This memorable apophthegm Is re 
sealed by Loigl Fulci and Trissino : 

Sempre a quel ver, eh* ha faccia di menzogna, 
E |riu senno tacer la lingua chela, 
Che spesso senza colpa fo veigogna. 

MorgaiUe JUagg^ c. xxiv 

La veritA, che par mensogna, 
01 dovrebbe tacer dall' uom eh* h saggio. 
. n iudia Idb.^ c xvi. 

184 THE VISION. IS»-134 

But silence here were vain ; aud by these uoteH,' 
Which now I sing, reader, I swear to thee, 
So may they favor find to latest times I 
That through the gross and murky air I spied 
A shape come swimming up, that might have quelFd 
The stoutest heart with wonder ; in such guise 
As one returns, who hath been down to loose 
An anchor grappled fast against some rock. 
Or to aught else that in the salt wave lies. 
Who, upward springing, close drhws in his foet 


Ibe nonster Geiyon is described; to whom while Vi.'gil is 
speaking in order that he may carry them both down to 
tho next circle, Dante, by permission, goes a little fkrther 
along the edge of the void, to descry the third species of 
sinners contained in this compartment, namely, those who 
have done violence to Art ; and then returning to his man 
ter, they lx)th descend, seated on the back of Geryon. 

" Lo ! the fell monster^ with the deadly sting, 
Who passes mountains, breaks through fenced walls 
And firm embattled spears, and with his filth 
Taints all the world." Thus me my graide addreasM, 
And beckon'd him, that he should come to shore. 
Near to the stony causeway's utmost edge. 

Forthwith that image vile of Fraud appeared, 
His head and upper part exposed on land. 
But laid not on the shore his bestial train. 
His face the semblance of a just man's wore. 
So kind and gracious was its outward cheer ; 
The rest was serpent all : two shaggy claws 
Reach'd to the arm-pits ; and the back and breast. 
And either side, were pamted o'er with nodes 
And orbits. Colon variegated more 
Nor Turks nor Tartars e'er on cloth of state 
With interchangeable embroidery wove, 

1 By these notes.] So Frezzi : 

Per queste rime mie, lettor, ti gioro. 

U Qtuufrtr., lib. Ul. cap. 16 

In like manner, Fmdar confirms his veracity by an oath: 

Vsi ftd yUp 'OpKov, in^¥ iS^av, 

vhieh Is Imitated, as nsnal, by Chiabrera; 

Ed io Inngo il Permesso 

Sacro alie Muse obiigherb mla fede. 

Gmz. Erioehe, ilUL 7& 
Tftd fell monster.] Fraud. 

i9-ff7 HELL, Canto XVII. 136 

Nor spread Arachno o'er her curious loom. 
As oft-times a light skiff, moor'd to the shore, 
Stands part in water, part upon the land ; 
Or, as where dwells the greedy German boor, 
The beaver settles, watching for his prey ; 
So on the lim, that fenced the sand with rock. 
Sat perchM the fiend of evil. In the void 
Glancing, his tail uptum'd its venomous fork, 
With sting like scorpion's arm'd. Then thus my 

" Now need our way must turn few steps apart. 
Far as to that ill beast, who couches there." 

Thereat, toward the right our downward course 
We shaped, and, better to escape the flame 
And burning marl, ten paces on the verge 
Proceeded. Soon as we to him arrive. 
A little farther on mine eye beholds 
A tribe of spirits, seated on the sand 
Near to the void. Forthwith my master spake : 
" That to the full thy knowledge may extend 
Of all this round contains, go now, and mark 
The mien these wear: but hold not long discourse. 
Till thou retumest, I with him meantime 
Will parley, that to us he may vouchsafe 
The aid of his strong shoulders." Thus alone, 
Yet forward on the extremity I paced 
Of that seventh circle, where the mournful tribe 
Were seated. At the eyes forth gush'd their pangs 
Agalost the vapors and the torrid soil 
Alternately their shifting hands they plied. 
Thus use the dogs in summer still to ply 
Their jaws and feet by turns, when bitten sore 
By snats, or flies, or gadflies swarming roimd. 

Noting the visages of some, who lay 
Beneath the pelting of that dolorous fire. 
One of them all I knew not ; but perceived. 
That pendent from his neck each bore a pouch' 
With colors and with emblems various mark'd. 
On which it seem'd as if their eye did feed. 

And when, among them, looking round I came, 
A yellow purse' I saw with azure wrought, 

1 Jl poueh.\ A pane, whereon the aimorial beahngB of 
each were emblazoaed. According to Landino, oiir poet 
implies that the usurer can pretend to no other honor than 
foch as he derives fh)m his purse and his family. The do* 
icription of persons by their heraldic Insignia is remarkable 
botii on the present and several other occasions in this poem 
Jt yellow purse ' The arms of the Gianfigliazzi of Florence 


That wore a lion's countenance and port. 

Then, still my sight pursuing its career, 

Another' I beheld, than blood more red, 

A goose display of whiter wing than curd. 

And one, who bore a fat and azure swine' 

Pictured on his white scrip, addressed me thuA : 

" What dost thou in this deep ? Go now and kmofW 

Since yet thou livest, that my neighbor here 

Vitaliano* on my left shall sit. 

A Faduan with these Fla'entines am I. 

Oft-times they thunder in mine ears, exclaimingt 

* Oh ! haste that noble knight,* he who the pouch 

• With the three goats* will bring.' " This said, h* 

writhed * 
The mouth, and loU'd the tongue out, like an ox 
That licks his nostrils. I, lest longer stay 
He ill might brook, who bade me stay not long, 
Backward my steps from those sad spirits tum'd 

My guide already seated on the haunch 
Of the fierce animal I found ; and thus 
He me encouraged. " Be thou stout : be bold. 
Down such a steep flight must we now descend 
Mount thou before : for, that no power the tail 
May have to harm thee, I will be i' th' midst." 

As one,' who hath an ague fit so near. 
His nails already are tum'd blue, and he 
Quivers all o'er, if he but eye the shade ; 
Such was my cheer at hearing of his words. 
But shame^ soon interposed her threat, who makeit 

i Another.] Those of the Ubbriachi, another Florentint 
family of high dUtinction. 

s A fat and azure awine.} The aims of the Scrovigni, a 
noble iamily of Padna. 

* Vitaliano.] Vltallano del Dente, a Paduan. 

4 mat noble knvhL\ Giovanni Bujamonti, a Flcnrentine 
usurer, the most inuunons of his time. 

B &oat8.] Monti, in his Proposta, had Introduced a face 
tious dialogue on the supposed mistake made in the interpra 
tatlon of this word ** Becchi" by the compilers of the Delia 
Crusca Dictionary, who translated it "goats," instead of 
"beaks." He. afterwards saw his own error, and had the 
Ingenuousness to confess it in the Appendix, p. S74. Hav' 
Ing In the former editions of this work been betrayed into 
the same misunderstanding of my author, I cannot do leu 
than follow so good an example, by ackBowledging and cor- 
rrctlng it. 

• Ae one.] Dante trembled with fear, like a man who ex- 
poctlng the return of a quartan ague, shakes even at the 
Klght of a place made cool by the shade. 

' But sAofM.l I have fiillowed the reading iu Yellalelb)'! 

«&-lS7. HELL, Canto XVII. 187 

The servant bold in presence of his lord 

I settled me upon those shoulders huge, 
And would have said, but that the words to aid 
My purpose came not, " Look thou clasp me firm * 

But he whose succor then not first I proved. 
Soon as I mounted, in his arms aloft. 
Embracing, held me up ; and thus he spake : 
** Geryon ! now move thee : be thy wheeling gyros 
Of ample circuit, easy thy descent 
Think on the unusual burden thou sustain'st " 

As a small vessel, backening out from land. 
Her station quits ; so thence the monster loosed. 
And, when he felt himself at large, tum'd round 
There, where the breast had been, his forked tail. 
Thus, like an eel, outstretched at length he steered, 
Gathering the air up with retractile claws. 

Not greater was the dread, when Phaeton 
The reins let drop at random, whence high heaven, 
Whereof signs yet appear, was wrapt in lames ; 
Nor when ill-fated Icarus perceived, 
By liquefaction of the scalded wax, 
The trusted pennons loosen'd from his loins. 
His sire exclaiming loud, ** 111 way thou keep'st," 
Than was my dread, when round me on each part 
The air I view'd, and other object none 
Save the fell beast. He, slowly sailing, wheels 
His downward motion, unobserved of me, 
But that the wind, arismg to my face. 
Breathes on me from below. Now on our right 
I heard the cataract beneath us leap [plor^. 

With hideous crash ; whence bending down to ex« 
New terror I conceived at the steep plunge ; 
For flames I saw, and wailings smote mine ear : 
So that, all tremblmg, close 1 crouch'd my limbs. 
And then distinguished, unperceived before. 
By the dread torments that on every side 
Drew nearer, how our downward course we wound. 

As falcon, that hath long been on the wing, 
But lure nor bird hath seen, while in despair 
The falconer cries, " Ah me ! thou stoop'st to earth,*^ 
Wearied descends, whence nimbly he arose 
In many an airy wheel, and lighting sits 

Ma vergogna mi fe le su« mlnacce , 
nrhich appears preferable to the common one. 

Ma vei^ogna mi far, &c. 
It is necessary that I should observe this, because it fuu 
6een Imputed to me as a mistake. 

138 THE VISION. ia9-i82 

At distance from his lord in angry mood ; 
So Geryon lighting places us on foot 
Low down at base of the deep-furrow'd rock, 
And, of his burden there discharged, forthwith 
Sprang forward, like an arrow from the string 



The Poet describes the sitaatioa and form of the eighth circle 
divided into ten golfs, which contaia as many different de- 
sciiptions of fraudulent sinners ; but in the present Canto 
he treats only of two sorts : the first is of those who, either 
for their own pleasure, or for that of another, have seduced 
any woman from her duty; and these are scourged of 
demons in the first gulf: the other sort is of flatterers, who 
in the second gulf are condemned to remain immersed in 

There is a place within the depths of hell 
Caird Malebolge, all of rock dark-stain'd 
With hue ferruginous, e*en as the steep 
That round it circling winds. Right in the midst 
Of that abominable region yawns 
A spacious gulf profound, whereof the frame 
Due time shall tell. The circle, that remains. 
Throughout its round, between the gulf and base 
Of the high craggy banks, successive forms 
Ten bastions, in its hollow bottom raised. 

As where, to guard the walls, full many a foss 
Begirds some stately castle, surs defence^ 
AfTording to the space within ; so here 
Were modeird these : and as like fortresses, 

1 Sure dtfenes.] La parte dov' e* son rendon sicura. 
This is the common reading ; besides whidi there are two 

La parte dove il sol rende figuia ; 

La parte dov* ei son rende figura- 
the former of which two, Lombordi says, is found in DanieUo*8 
edition, printed at Venice, 1568; in that printed in the same 
city with the commentaries of Landino and Vellntello, 157S; 
and also in some MSB. The latter, which has very much the 
appearance of being genuine, was adopted by Lombaidi hiok- 
self; on the authority of a text supposed to be in the hand 
writinc of Fiiippo Villani, but so defaced by the alterationa 
made In it by some less skilAil hand, that the tmces of the 
old ink were with difficulty recovered ; and it has, since the 

tublication of Lmnbardi's edition, been met with also in the 
lonte Cassino MB. 

Monti is decided in favor of Lombardi*s reading, and BiagkiU 
"tnoosed to it 

<&-46u HELL, Canto XVIIL 139 

E'en from their thiethold to the brink with mt, 
Are flank'd with bridges ; from the rock's low baac 
Thus flinty paths advanced, that 'cross the moles 
And dikes struck onward far as to the gulf. 
That in one bound collected cuts them o& 
Such was the place, wherein we found ourselves 
From Geryon's back dislodged. The bard to left 
Held on his way, and I beUnd him moved. 

On our right hand new misery I saw, 
New pains, new executioners of wrath. 
That swarming peopled the first chasm. Below 
Were naked sinners. Hitherward they came, 
Meeting our faces, from the middle point ; 
With us beyond,' but with a larger stride. 
E'en thus the Romans,' when the year returns 
Of Jubilee, with better speed to rid 
The thronging multitudes, their means devise 
For such as pass the bridge ; that on one side 
All front toward the castle, and approach 
Saint Peter's fane, on the other towards the mount 

Each diverse way, along the gnsly rock, 
Hom'd demons I beheld, with lashes huge. 
That on their back unmercifully smote. 
Ah ! how they made them bound at the first stripe 
None for the second waited, nor the third 

Meantime, as on I pass'd, one met my sight. 
Whom soon as view'd, " Of him," cried I, " not vet 
Mine eye hath had his fill." I therefore stay'd^ 
My feet to scan him, and the teacher kind 
Paused with me, and consented I should walk 
Backward a space ; and the tormented spirit. 
Who thought to hide him, bent his visage down. 

1 WUk US beifond.] Beyond the middle point they tended 
the same way with us, but their pace was quiclcer thau 

* Pea thut the Romans.] In the year 1900, Pope Boniface 
Vm., to remedy the inconvenience occasioned by the press 
nf peoide who were passing over the bridge of Bt. Angelo 
dunng the time of the Jubilee, caused it to be divided length- 
wise by a partition ; and ordered, that all those who were 
gcAag to St. Peter's should keep one side, and those returning 
the other. O. Villani, who was present, describes the order 
that was preserved, lib. vUi. cap. 36. It was at tliis time, and 
on this oecasim, as the honest histcnrian tells us, that he first 
3oiieeived the design of** compiling his booic." 

> / tUrrfare tta^tL] *• I piedi aflissi" is the reading of the 
Nidohmtina edition ; but Lombard! is under an error, when 
be tells US that the other editions have *'gU occhi dDssl;** 
'or YeUatello's, at least, printed in 1544, agrees with the 

140 TIIE VISION. 47-«J 

But it avaird liim naught ; for I exclaim'd : 

** Thou who dost cast thme eye upon the groundr 

Unless thy features do belie thee much, 

Venedico' art thou. But what brings thee 

Into this bitter seasoning?"' He replied : 

" Unwillingly I answer to thy words. 

But thy clear speech, that to my mmd recalls 

The world I once inhabited, constrains me. 

Know then 'twas I who led fair Ghisola 

To do the Marquis' will, howevei fame 

The shameful tale have bruited. Nor alone, 

Bologna hither sendeth me to mourn. 

Rather with us the place is so o'erthrong'd, 

That not so many tongues this day are taught. 

Betwixt the Reno and Sayena's stream. 

To answer Sipa* in their country's phrase. 

And if of that securer proof thou need. 

Remember but our craving thirst for gold." 

Him speaking thus, a demon with his thong 
Struck and exclaim'd, " Away, corrupter ! here 
Women are none for sale." Forthwith I join'd 
My escort, and few paces thence we came 
To where a rock forth issued from the bank 
That easily ascended, to the right 
Upon its splinter turning, we depart 
From those eternal barriers. When arrived 
Where, underneath, the gaping arch lets pass 
The scourged souls : *' Pause here," the teacher B&id^ 
•* And let these others miserable now 
Strike on thy ken ; faces not yet beheld. 
For that together ihey with us have walk'd." 

From the old bridge we eyed the pack, who came 
From the other side toward us, like the rest, 
Excoriate from the lash. My gentle guide. 
By me unquestion'd, thus his speech resumed : 

1 Venedieo.l Venedieo Caccianimlco, a Bolognese, who 
prevailed on his sister Ghisola 1? prostitute herself to Obiixo 
da Este, Marquis of Ferrara, whom we have seen among the 
tyrants, Canto xlL 

s Seasoning.^ Salse. Monti, In his froposta, following 
Benvenuto da Imola, takes this to be the name of a place. If 
so, a play must have been intended on the word, wnich can- 
not be preserved in English. 

* To anawer Blpa.1 He denotes Bologna by ito litaatiou 
tetween the rivers Savena to the east, luid Eeno to the west 
of that city ; and by a peculiarity of dialect, the use of tho 
aflirmallve Mpa instead either of m, or, as Monti will have ll 

Bi-18S. HELL, Canto XVIII. |4l 

" Behold that lofty shade, who this way tends^ 

And seems too wo-begone to drop a tear. 

How yet the regal aspect he retains ! 

Jason is he, whose skill and prowess won 

The ram from Colchus. To the Lemnian isle 

His passage thither led him, when those bold 

And pitiless women had slain all their males. 

There he with tokens and fair witching words 

Hypsipyle' beguiled, a virgin young. 

Who first had all the rest herself beguiled 

Impregnated, he left her there forlorn. 

Such is the guilt condenms him to this pain. 

Here too Medea's injuries are avenged. 

All bear him company, who like deceit 

To his have practised. And thus much to know 

Of the first vale suffice thee, and of those 

Whom its keen torments urge.*' Now had we come 

Where, crossing the next pier, the straiten'd path 

Bestrides its shoulders to another arch. 

Hence, in the second chasm we heard the ghosts. 
Who gibber in low melancholy sounds, 
With wide-stretch'd nostrils snort, and on themselve.^ 
Smite with their palms. Upon the banks a scurf, 
From the foul steam condensed, encrusting hung. 
That held sharp combat with the sight and smell. 

So hollow is the depth, that from no part, 
Save on the summit of the rocky span. 
Could I distinguish aught. Thus far we came ; 
And thence I saw, within the foss below, 
A crowd immersed in ordure, that appear'd 
Draff of the human body. There beneath 
Searching with eye inquisitive, I mark'd 
One with his head so grimed, 'twere hard to deem 
If he were clerk or layman. Loud he cried : 
" Why greedily thus bendest more on me, 
Than on these other filthy ones, thy ken ?" 

" Because, if true my memory/' I replied, 
' I heretofore have seen thee with dry locks ; 
And thou Alessio' art, of Lucca sprung. 
Therefore than all the rest I scan thee more." 

Then beating on his brain, these words he spake : 

> Bppg^le.] See ApoIIonins Rhodins, 1. i., and Vaterias 
FlaccQs, L iL Hypsipyle deceived the other women, by con 
eeollBg her &ther Thoas, when they had agreed to pnt all 
cheir males to death. 

* MetJrio.] Alessio, of an ancient and considerable family 
m Lucca, called the Interminei 

148 THE VISION 133-18a 

** Me thus low down my flatteries have sunk, 
Wherewith I ne'er enough could glut my tongue." 

My leader thus : " A little further stretch 
Thy face, that thou the Tisage well may'st note 
Of that besotted, sluttish courtesan, 
Who there doth rend her with defiled nails, 
Now crouching down, now risen on her feet 
Thals^ is this, the harlot, whose false lip 
Answer'd her doting paramour that ask'd, 
* Thankcst me much !' — * Say rather, wondroibaly/ 
And, seeing this, here satiate be our view." 



Phey come to the third gulf, wherein are rnaished those 
who have been guilty of simony. These are fixed wltli 
the head downwards in certain apertures, so that no more 
of them than the legs appear without, ana on the soles of 
their feet are seen burning flames. Dante is taken down 
by his guide into the bottom of the gulf; and there flnde 
pope Nicholas the Fifth, whose evil deeds, together with 
those of other pontiffs, are bitterly reprehen&d. Virgti 
then carries him up again to the arch, which affinds thcu) 
a passage over the following gulf. 

Wo to thee, Simon Magus ! wo to you, 
f lis wretched followers ! who the things of God, 
Which should be wedded imto goodness, them, 
KapaciouB as ye are, do prostitute 
For gold and silver in adultery. 
Now must the trumpet sound for you, since yours 
Is the third chasm. Upon the following vault 
We now had mounted, where the rock impends 
Directly o'er the centre of the foss. 

Wisdom Supreme ! how wonderful the art, 
Which thou dost manifest in heaven, in earth. 
And in the evil world, how just a meed 
Allotting by thy virtue unto all. 

I saw the livid stone, throughout the sides 
And in its bottom full of apertures. 
All equal in their width, and circular each. 
Nor ample less nor larger they appear'd 

I Tki&9^ He alludes to that passage in the Ennnchlis ol 
Terence, where Thraso asks if Thais was obliged to hUn ftv 
the present he had sent her ; and Gnatho reiuies, that aht 
hod expressed her obligation in the most forcible tems. 
T. Magnas vero agere gratias Thais mihi 1 
O. Ingentes £1111., a. iiL a. L 

]e-5S HELL, Cavto XIX. 143 

Than, in St John's fair dome' of me beloved, 

Those framed to hold the pm« baptismal streams, 

One of the which I brake, some few years past^ 

To save a whehning infant : and be this 

A. seal to nndeceive whoever doubts 

The motive of my deed. From out the month 

Of every one emerged a sinner's feet, 

And of the legs high npward as the calf. 

The rest beneath was hid. On either foot 

The soles were burning ; whence the flexile joints 

G'anced with such violent motion, as had snapp'd 

Asunder cords or twisted withs. As flame. 

Feeding on imctuous matter, glides along 

The surface, scarcely touching where it moves ; 

So here, from heel to point, glided the flames. 

" Master ! say who is he, than all the rest 
Glancing in fiercer agony, on whom 
A ruddier flame doth prey?" I thus inquired. 

" If thou be willing," he replied, " that I 
Carry thee down, where least the slope bank falls, 
He of himself shall tell thee, and his wrongs." 

I then : " As pleases thee, to me is best. 
Thou art my lord : and know'st that ne'er I quit 
Thy will : what olence hides, that knowest thou." 

Thereat on the fourth pier we came, we tum'd, 
^nd on our left descended to the depth, 
1 narrow strait, and perforated close. 
N^or from his side my leader set me down. 
Till to his orifice he brought, whose limb 
Quivering express'd his pang. <* Whoe'er thou art, 
^ad spirit ! thus reversed, and as a stake 
Driven in the soil," I in these words began ; 
'* If thou be able, utter forth thy voice." 

There stood I like the filar, thai doth shrive 
A ^vretch for murder doom'd, who, e'en when fix'd,' 

> Saint John* » fair dome.] The apertures in the rock were- 
or the same dimensioiu as the fonts of St. John the Baptist 
at Florence ; one of which, Dante says, he had broken, to 
rescua a child that was playing near and fell in. He inti- 
mates, that the motiye of his breaking the font had been ma- 
licionsly represented by his enemies. 

* 7f%ei» jEz*(i.] The commentators on Boccaccio*8 Decame- 
ron, p. 72, ediz. Ginnti, 1573, cite the words of the statute by 
which murderers were sentenced thus to suffer at Florence. 
*■ Assassinas trahatnr ad candam mull sea asini usque ad \o- 
aao jnstltis ; et ibidem plantetnr, capite deorsom, ita qnnd 
moriator.'* *'Let the assassin be dragged at the tail of a 
mule or ass to the place of justice ; and there let him be se*. 
ki the ground with his face downward, so that hn die " 

144 THE VISIOiS 58.86. 

Calleth him back, whence death awhile delaya. 

He shouted : <* Ha ! already stainlest there ? 
Already standest there, O Boniface !^ 
By many a year the writing play'd me faUo. 
So early dost thou surfeit with the wealth, 
For which thou fearedst not in guile^ to take 
The lovely lady, and then mangle her?'* 

I felt as those Jfrho, piercing not the drift 
Of answer made them, stand as if exposed 
In mockery, noricnow what to reply ; 
When Virgil thus admonish'd : " Tell him quick. 
' I am not he, not he whom thou belieyest' ** 

And I, as was enjoin'd me, straight replied. 

That heard, the spirit all did wrench hjs feet. 
And, sighing, next in woful accent spake : 
" What then of me requirest ? If to know 
So much imports thee, who I am, that thou 
Hast therefore down the bank descended, learu 
That in the mighty mantle I was robed,' 
And of a she>bear was indeed the son, 
So eager to advance my whelps, that there 
My having in my purse above I stow'd. 
And here myself. Under my head are dragged 
The rest, my predecessors in the guilt 
Of simony. Stretched at their length, they lie 
Along an opening in the rock. Midst them 
I also low shall fall, soon as he comes. 
For whom I took thee, when so hastily 
I questioned. But already longer time 
Hath pass'd, since my soles kindled, and I thus 
Upturn'd have stood, than is his doom to stand 
Planted with fiery feet, for after him, 
One yet of deeds more ugly shall arrive, 
From forth the west, a shepherd without law,* 

1 O Bonxj'ace!\ The spirit mistakes Dante for Bonl&oo 
VIII. who was then alive ; and who he did not expect would 
have arrived so soon, In consequence, as It should seem, of a 
prophecy, which predicted the death of that pope at a late: 
period. Boni£M;e died in 1303. 

s In guile.] **Thoa didst presume to avive by firandulen 
means at the papal power, and afterwards to abase it** 

* In the mighty mantle I v>€U robed.] Nicholas III. of the 
Orsini family, whom the Poet therefore calls "figlluoldell* 
orsa,*' '* son of the she-bear." He died in 1381. 

* FYom forth the wMt, a shepherd itithoui law.] Bertrand 
de Got, Archbishop of Bordeaux, who succeeded to the ponti- 
flcate in 1305, and assumed the title of Clement V. He trans- 
ferred the holy see to Avignon in 1308, (where it remalnod 
tUl 1376,) and died in 1314 

nr-100. HELL, Canto XIX. 145 

Fated to cover both his form and mine. 
He a new Jason' shall be call'd, of whom 
In Maccabees we read ; and favor such 
As to that priest his king indulgent show'd, 
Shall be of France's monarch' shown to him.** 

I know not if I here too for presumed, 
But in this strain I answer*d : " Tell me now, 
What treasures from St Peter at the first 
Our Lord demanded, when he put the keys 
Into his charge? Surely he ask'd no more 
But < Follow me I' Nor Peter,' nor the rest, 
Or gold or silver of Matthias took, 
When lots were cast upon the forfeit place 
Of the condemned soul.^ Abide thou then ; 
Thy punishment of right is merited : 
And look thou well to that ill-gotten coin, 
Which against Charles' thy hudihood inspired. 
If reverence of the keys restrain'd me not. 
Which thou in happier times didst hold, I yet 
Severer speech might use. Your avarice 
O'ercasts the world with mourning, under foot* 
Treading the good, and raising bad men up. 
Of shepherds like to you, the Evangelist''^ 

1 A new Ja»on.\ " But after the death of Seleucus, when 
AntiochoB, called Epiphanes, took the kingdom, Jaaon, tht* 
brother of Onlas, labored underhand to be high-priest, prom- 
ising unto the king, by Intercession, three hundred and three- 
score talents of silver, and of another revenue eighty talents.* 
Maecab^ b. 11. ch. iv. 7, 8. 

> Of Fhmee"* vumatxk.] Philip IV. of France. See G 
Villani, lib. viil. c. Ixxx. 

a Jfor Peter.] Acts of the Apostles, ch. i. 96. 

* TTu condemned soul.] Judas. 

A Againet Charles.] Nicholas III. was enraged against 
Charles L King of Sicily, because he rejected with seorn a 
proposition made by that pope for an alliance between their 
camilies. See G YUlani, Hist., Ub. vU. c. liv. 

• Underfoot^ 

So shall the world go on, 

To good malignant, to bad men benign. 

Miltan, P. L^ b. zil. 538. 

' The Evangeiist.] Rev. c. zvii. 1, S, 3.~Fetrarch, In one 
.>f his Epistles, had his eye on these lines : " Qaude (Snqnam) 
et ad aliquid utiiie iwoenta gloriare honorum hostit et nuuorum 
hospet, atque aeyium pessima rerun Babylon ferie^ Rhodam 
rwfia impontayfamoea dUam an infamit meretrix^fomicata eum 
reg'Onu terra. Ilia 'equidem ipsa es quam in spirita sacer 
ridit Evangelista. JUa eademj tn^iiam, m, non o/to, eedene 
ngter Ofuao nnUUu, eive ad littora tribue einetajluminibiu sive 
rerwm atque dkntiarum turba mortalium ^ibue laeciviene ac 
eeeura ineidee opuim immemor mtemarum axve ut idem qui ridit. 
MfMfifit. Popnli et gentes et lingnee a qun sunt, super qiiny 


Was V7ait), when her, who site upon the wuvesi 
With kingH in filthy whoredom he beheld , 
She who with seven heads tower'd at her birtlu 
And from ten horns her proof of glory drew. 
Long as her spouse in virtue took delight 
Of gold and silver ye have made your god, 
Differing wherein nom the idolater, 
But that he worships one, a hundred ye ? 
Ah, Constantino !^ to how much ill gave birth. 

meretrix sedes, recognosce habinun," &c. Petrarekm ^ra, uL 
fol. Basil., 1554. I^ist. sine tUulo Liber, ep. zvl. p. 739. Thi! 
text is here probably corrapted. The constructiun certaialy 
may be rendered easier by omitting the ad before littora, and 
substituting a comma for a full stop after exposviL With 
all the respect that is due to a veneiable prelate and truly 
learned critic, I cannot but point out a mistake he has fttllen 
into, relating to this passage, when he observes, that " Nnm 
berless passages in the writings of Petrarch speak of Rome 
under the name of Babylon. But an equal stress is not to be 
laid on all these. It should be remembered, that the popes, in 
Petrarch's time, resided at Avignon, greatly to the disparage- 
ment of themselves, as he thought, and especially of Rome , 
of which this singular man was a little less than idolatrous 
The situation of the place, surrounded bv waters, and his 
splenetic concern for the exiled church, (for under this iden 
lie painted to himself the pope's migration to the banks ot 
Avignon,) brought to his mind the condition of the Jewisli 
church in the Babylonian captivity. And this parallel was all, 
|)erhap8, that he meant to insinuate in most of those passages. 
But when he applies the prophecies to Rome, as to the 
Apocalyptic Babylon, (as he clearly does in the epistle undor 
consideration,} his meaning is not equivocal, and we do him 
but justice to give him an honorable place among the 
TK8TB8 vxRiTATis." An introduction to the study of the 
Prophecies, ^., by Richard Hurd, D. D., serm. vii. p. 230, note 
V, ed. 1772. 

Now, a reference to the words printed in Italics, which the 
Sishop of Worcester has omitted in his quotation, will m ike 
.t snmcientiy evident, that Avifnon, and not Rome, is here 
alluded to by Petrarch. 

The application that Is mad« of these prophecies by two 
men so eminent for their learning and sagacity as Dante and 
Petrarch is, however, very remarkable, and must be satisfac- 
tory to those who have renounced the errors and corruptions 
of the papacy* Such applications were indeed freouent in 
the middle ages, as may be seen in the ** Sermons'* above 
referred to. Balbo observes, that it is not Rome, as roost 
erroneovsly interpreted, but Avignon, and the court there, 
that is termed Babylon by Dante and Petrarch, lita dl 
Dante, v. il. p. 103. 

1 Jik^ Constantino /] He alludes to the pretended nd o( 
the Uiteran by Constantine to Sylvester, of which Dajite 
himself seems to imply a doubt, in his treatise "De Mo> 
narchiA." — "Ergo scindcre Imperium, Imperatori noa licet 
SI ergo aliqna> dignitates per Constantinura essent allenalB 
r Jt dicnnl) «ib Imperio," &c.. lib iii " Therefore to moke .1 

U»-135 IIELU Canto XX. 14V 

Not thy conversion, but that plenteouB dowcri 
Which the first wealthy Father gained from thee " 

Meanwhile, as thus I sung, he, whether wrath 
Or conscience smote him, violent upsprang 
Spinning on either sole. I do believe 
My teacher well was pleased, with bo composed 
A lip he listened ever to the sound 
Of the tme words I utter'd. In both arras 
He caught, and, to his bosom liftmg me. 
Upward retraced the way of his descent. 

Nor weary of his weight, he press'd me dose, 
Till to the summit of the rock we came, 
Our passage from the fourth to the fifth pier. 
His cheiish'd burden there gently he placed 
Upon the rugged rock and steep, a path 
Not easy for the clambering goat to mount. 

Thence to my view another vale appeared. 



The Poet relates the panishmeiit of such as presumed, whiit* 
living, to predict Aiture events. It is to have their faces 
reversed and set the contrary way on their limbs, so that, 

rent in the empire exceeds the tawfal power of the emperor 
himself. It then, some dignities were by Constantine alien- 
ated (as they report) from the empire, &e.'* In another part 
of the same treatise be speaks of the alienation with less 
donbt, indeed, bat not with less disapprobation : " O felicem 
popnlmn ! O Ansoniam te gloriosam ! si vel nnnqnam infir- 
mator imperii tui extitisset; vei nnnqnam sua pia intentio 
ipsom fefellisset.** — " O happy people ! O glorious Italy ! if 
either he who thus weakened thine empire had never been 
>x>rn, or had never suffered his own pions intentions to mis- 
lead him.** Uh.ii,MdJbum. 

The gift is by Ariosto very hamaronslv placed in the moot, 
among the things lost or abased on earth : 

Di varj flun ad on gran monte passa, 
Ch' ebber gl& buono odore« or puzsan forte, 
(Xaesto era il dono (se pei^ dir lece) 
Che Costantino al buon Silvestro feee. 

Orl. Ftur^ c. xxxlv. at 80. 

Hilton has translated both this passage and that In ttur 
'«xt. i*rM0 fVorktt vol. 1. p. 11, ed. 1753. 

Ah, Constantine ! of how mach ill was ranse 
Not thy nonversion, but those rich domains 
That the first wealthy pope received of thee. 

Then pass'd he to a flowery mountain green. 
Which once smelt sweet, now stinks as odiously; 
This was that gift, if yon the tmth will have. 
That Cbnstantlnc to sood Silvsster cave. 

148 'I'HE VISION. I-3C. 

being deprived of the poxver to see before tbeni, they are 
constrained ever to walk backwards. Among these ViifU 
points out to him Anrnhiaraiis, Tiresias, Aruns, and Manto, 
(from the mention of whom he takes occasion to speak of 
the origin of Mantna,) together with several otben, «rho 
had practised the arts of divination and astroiogy. 

And now the verse proceeds to torments new; 
Fit ar^ment of this the twentieth strain 
Of the first song, whose awful theme records 
The spirits whelm'd in wo. Earnest I k>ok'd 
Into the depth, that open'd to my view, 
Moisten'd with tears of anguish, and beheld 
A tribe, that came along the hollow vale, 
In silence weeping : such their step as walk 
Quires, chanting solemn litanies, on earth. 

As on them more direct mine eye descerds. 
Each wonderously seem'd to be revened' 
At the neck -bone, so. that the countenance 
Was from the reins averted ; and because 
None might before him look, they were compeil d 
To advance with backward gait. Thus one perhups 
Hath been by force of palsy clean transposed. 
But I ne'er saw it nor believe it so. 

Now, reader ! think within thyself, so God 
Fruit of thy reading give thee ! how I long 
Could keep my visage dry,* when I beheld 
Near me our form distorted in such guise, 
That on the hinder parts fallen from the face 
The tears down-streaming roU'd. Against a rock 
I lean'd and wept, so that my guide exclaimM : 
'* What, and art thou, too, witless as the rest ? 
Eiere pity most doth show herself alive, 
When she is dead. What guilt exceedeth his, 
Who with Heaven's judgment in his passion strives / 
Raise up thy head, raise up, and see the man 
Before whose eyes* earth gaped in Thebes, when all 

■ ' '■ ^■■' ' ' ■■■■-■-■■■■■ — I ■ ■ ■ I ■ I I ,- !■ a • 

t Reverted.] 

Bat very anoouth slsht was to behold 
How he did fashioa his untoward pace ; 
For as he fatwtad mov*d his footing old, 
So backward stili was tiun'd his wrinkled face 
Unlike to men who ever as they trace, 
Both feet and fiice one way are wont to lead 

Spenaer^ Faery QueeHf b. 1. c. vili st 3J 

Ceuld keqp my vUag^ dry j 

Bight so deform what neart of man cottld long 
Dry-eyed behold 1 Adam could not, b:it wefrt. 

MUUm, P L., b xl. 496 
* Before whose eyef.\ AnapMaraiis, one of the seven kin«(S 

n-^ H£LL, Canto XX 14fi 

Cried out, < Am[riiiara1l8, whither ruBhent? 
Why leavest thoa the war 7* lie not the less 
Fell mining* far as tu Minos down. 
Whose grapple none eludes Lo 1 how he makeM 
The breast his shoulders ; and who once too far 
Before him wish'd to see, now backward looks, 
And treads reverse his path. Tiresias* note. 
Who semblance changed, when woman he became 
Of male, through every limb transform'd ; and then 
Once more behooved hun with his rod to strike 
The two entwining serpents, ere the plumes. 
That mark'd the better sex, might shoot again. 

*( Aruns,^ with rers his belly facing, comes. 
On Luni's mountains midst the marbles white, 
Where delves Carrara's hind, who wons beneath, 
A. cavern was his dwelling, whence the stars 

.■■... ■! I IIP .1 ■ 

who besieged Thebes. He is said to have been swallowed a| 
by an opening of the earth. See Lidgate*s Storie of Thebes, 
part iii., where it is told how the * Bishop Amphiaraiis" frll 
down to hell : 

And thns the deiill, for his outrages. 
Like his desert payed him his wages. 

A different reason, for his being doomed thus to perish, '.e 
tssigned by Piadar : 

b S* *A/t^ii^i, &c JWm. ix 

For thee, Amphiaraiis, earth, 
By Jove^s all-riving thunder cleH, 
Her mighty bosom open'd wide, 
Thee and thy plunging steeds to hide. 

Or ever on thy back the spear 

Of Periclvmenus impressM 

A wonnd to shame thy warlike breast 

For struck with panic fear 

The gods* own cliildren flee. 

I Ruining.] ** Rulnare.** Hence, perhaps, Milton, P. L., b.yl. 908, 

Heaven raining from heaven. 

t Tirtsiaa.\ 

— Duo magnomm virldi coeuntia svlvft 
Corpora serpentum bscnli vlolaverat ictn. 
Deque viro fiictus (mirabtle) fcsmina, seplem 
Egerat autmnnos. Octavo rursus eosdom 
VuUt Et, est vestrae si tanta potentia plage, 
Nunc quoq'ae vos feriam. Percussis a;>guibus isdem 
Forma prior redlit, genitivaque venit imago. 

Ovid. Met., lib. lit. 

* ^runs.l Amns is said to have dwelt in the mountains 
ofLuni, (from whence that territory is still called Lunigiana.) 
above Carrara, celebrated for its marble. Lucan. Phars., iio 
' 575. So Boeeacciov In tlie Fiammetta, lib. ill.: *' Quale 
Amnte,** Ate. ** Like Amns, who amidst the white marbles 
of Lutti eontempiated the celestial bodies and their motions.** 
Goaipam Fkxio degli Uberti, Dittamondo. 1 iH cap. vi. 

160 THE VISION. 47-6a 

\nd main-sea wide in boimdle» view he heid 

** The next, whose loosen'd tresses overspread . 
Her bosom, which thou seest not (for each hair 
On that side grows) was Manto,' she who search 'd 
Through many regions, and at length her seat 
Fix'd in my native land : whence a short space 
My words detain thy audience. When her sire 
From life departed, and in servitude 
The city dedicate to Bacchus moum'd. 
Long time she went a wanderer through the world 
Aloft in Italy's delightful land 
A lake there lies, at foot of that proud Alp 
That o'er the Tjrrol locks Grermania m. 
Its name Benacus, from whose ample breast 
A thousand springs, methinks, and more, between 
Camonica' and Garda, issuing forth^ 
Water the Apennine. There is a spot^ 
At midway of that lake, where he who bears 
Of Trento's flock the pastoral staff, with him 
Of Brescia, and the Veronese, might each 
Passing that way his benediction give. 
A garrison of goodly site and strong^ 

1 Manto.] The daughter of Tiresias of Thebes, a citvdedi 
cated to Bacchus. From Manto, Mantua, the country of Virgil 
derives its name. The Poet proceeds to describe the situation 
of that place. But see the note to Ptu^tory, Canto xxli. 
7. 112. 

3 Canumiea.'] Lombardi, instead of 

Fra Garda, e val Camonica e Apeanino, 

Fra Garda e val Camonica Fennino, 

from the Nidobeatina edition, (to which he might have added 
that of Veilutello in 1544,) and two M8S., all of which omit 
the second conjunction, the only part of the alteration that 
affects the sense. I have re-translated the passage, which in 
the former editions stood thus : 

which a thousand rills 

Methinks, and more, water between the vale 
Camonica and Garda, and the height 
Of Apennine remote. 

It should be added that Veilutello reads ** Valdimonica*' fof 
" Val Camonica ;" but which of these is right remains to U^ 
determined by a collation of editions and M9S., and still mora 
perhaps by a view of the country In the neighborhood of the 
lalce, (now called the Lago di Garda,) with a reference tc 

* THere ia a spot.] Prato di Fame, where the dioceses oi 
tVonto, Verona, and Brescia meet. 

* J§ gttrriMon of goodlf Mit0 and strong.] 

Gaza, belle e forte arnese 
D^ ftonteggiar i regni di Sorla. 

Tasso, Ger. lAb.^ c. i. at fli 

69-103. HELL, Canto XX. 15] 

Peachiera' stoads, to awe with front oj>{Ki6ed 
The Beijg^amese and Brescian, whence the shore 
More slope each way descends. There, whatsor'ei 
fienacus' bosom holds not, tumbUn^ o*er 
Down falls, and wmds a river flood beneath 
Through the green pastures. Soon as in his courae 
The stream makes head, Benacns then no mora 
They call the name, but Mindns, till at last 
Reaching Govemo, into Po he falls. 
Not far his course hath run, when a wide flat 
It finds, which oyerstietching as a marsh 
It covers, pestilent in summer oft. 
Hence journeying, the savage maiden saw 
Midst of the fen a territory waste 
And naked oi inhabitants. To shun 
All human convene, here she with her slaves, 
Plying her arts, remain'd, and lived, and left 
Her lx>dy tenantless. Thenceforth the tribes, 
Who round Were scattered, gathering to that place^ 
Assembled ; for its strength was great, enclosed 
On all parts by the fen. On those dead bones 
They rear'd themselves a city, for her sake 
Callmg it Mantua, who first chose the spot. 
Nor ask'd another omen for the name ; 
Wherein more numerous the people dwelt. 
Ere Casalodi's madness* by deceit 
Was wronged of Pinamonte. If thou hear 
Henceforth another origin' assigned 
Of that my country, I forewarn thee now, 
That falsehood none beguile thee of the truth." 
I answer'd, " Teacher, I conclude thy words 
So certain, that all else shall be to me 
As embers lacking life. But now of these, 
Who here proceed, instruct me, if thou see 
Any that merit more especial note. 

^ PeaehieraJ] A garrison situated to the south of Hhe Ultts 
where it empties itself and forms the Mincins. 

< CasalodTt madness.'] Alberto da Casalodi, who had goit 
possession of Mantua, was persuaded, by Pinamonte Buona- 
cossi, that he might ingratiate himself with the people, by 
banishing to their own castles the nobles, who were obnoz- 
fous to them. No sooner was this done, than Pinamonte pat 
himself at the head of the populace, drove out Casalodi and 
his adherents, and obtained the sovereignty for himself. 

* JlnoUur origin.l Lombardi refers toServios on the Tenth 
Book of the ^neid. Alii a Tarchone Tyrrhenl flratre eondl- dicnnt Mantnam antem ideo nominatam quia Eirascu 
lincna Mantuni ditem patrem appnliant. 

153 THE VISION. J04-ii4 

For thereon is iny mind alone intent'' [eheeli 

He straight replied: *<That spirit, from whose 
The beard sweeps o'er his shoulders brown, what tim*- 
GrsBcia was empt*ed of her males, that searne 
The cradles were supplied, the seer was he 
In Anlis, who with Galchas gaye the sign 
When first to cut the cable. Him they named 
Eurypilus: so sings my tragic strain,* 
In whish majestic measure well thou know'st, 
Who know'st it all. That other, round the loins 
So slender of his shape, was Michael Scot,' 

1 So tings my tragic »trai%,'\ 

Soapensi Eurypllmn scitattim oracola Phoebl 
Mittimus. Virg, JBn$id^ ii. l-i 

a Michael Scot.] ** Egli non ha ancora cnari, che in qaesta 
r.ittii fti un gran maestro in negromanzia, ll quale ebbe noine 
Michele Scotto, percib che di Scozia era." Boccaccio, Dec 
Gtom., vlii. nov. 9. 

"It is not long since there was In this city (Florence) a 
great master in necromancy, who was called Michele Scotto 
because he was firom Scotland.** See also Giov. Villani, Hist, 
lib. z. cap. cv. and cxll. and lib. xii. cap. xviii., and Faidodegli 
Uberti, Dittamondo, 1. ii. cavL zxvii. 

I make no apoio^ for adaing the following curious particu- 
lars extracted Aom the notes to Mr. Scott*s Lay of the Lnst 
Minstrel, a poem in which a happy use is made of the super- 
stitions relating to the subject of this note. " Sir Michael 
Scott, of Balwearie, flourished during the thirteenth century, 
and was one of the ambassadors sent to bring the Maid of 
Norway to Scotland upon the death of Alexander III. He 
was a man of much learning, chiefly acquired in foreign 
countries. He wrote a commentary upon AristoUe, printed 
at Venice in 1496, and several treatises upon natural philo- 
sophy, from which he appears to have been addicted to the 
abstruse studies of judicial astrology, alchymy, physiognomy, 
and chiromancy. Hence he passed among bis contempora-. 
ries for a skilful magician. Dempster informs us, that he re 
members to have heard in his youtli, that the magic bookis 
of Michael Scott were still in existence, but could not be 
opened without dan^r, on account of the fiends who were 
thereby invoked. Dempster! Hlstoria Ecclesiastlca, 1627, 
lib. xii. p. 495. Leslie characterizes Michael Scott as * Singu* 
lari phUosophis astronomie ac mediclnie laude praatans, 
dicelMitur penitisslmos maglas recessus indagasse.* A per- 
sonage thus spoken of by biographers and historians lose* 
little of his mystical flime in vulgar tradition. Accordingly, 
the memory of Sir Michael Scott survives in many a legena , 
and In the south of Scotland any work of great labor ami 
antiquity Is ascribed either to the agency of Anid Michael, of 
Sir William Wallace, or of the devil. Tradition varies con* 
eeming the place of his burial : some contend for Holme 
Coltrenie In Cumberland, others for Melrose Abbey: bat all 
agree that his books of magic were interred in his grave, of 
praserved in the convent where he died.** Tie Z'qr ef tin 
LmH Mimnnl, bf Walter Seottt £ff ., Load. 4to. 180S, p. 9M 

i5»l2ij. HELL, Casto XX, }59 

Practised in every alight of magie wile. 

" Guido Bonattt' Bee : Asdente^ mark, 
Who now were willing he had tended still 
The thread and cordwain, and too late repents. 

** See next the wretches, who the needle left, 
The shuttle and the spindle, and became 
DiYiners: baneful witcheries they wrought 
With images and herbs. But onward now : 
For now doth Cain with fork of thorns' confine 
On either hemisphere, touching the wave 
Bjeneath the towers of Seville. Yesternight 
The moon was round. Thou mayst remember well 

Mr. Walton, speaking of the new translations of Aiistotle, 
from the original Greek into Latin, about the twelfth cen* 
turVf observes: '*I believe the translators understood very 
little Greek. Oar coantryman, Michael Scotus, was one of 
the first of them; who was assisted by Andrew, a Jew. 
Michael was astrologer to Frederic II. Emperor of Germany, 
and appears to have executed his translations at Toledo in 
Spain, about the year 12S0. - These now versions were per- 
haps little more than corrections from those of the early 
Arabians, made under the inspection of the learned Spanish 
Saracens.*' History of English Poetry, vol. i. dissert ii. and 
sect. ix. p. 302. 

Among the Canonici MSS. in the Bodleian, I have seen 
(X* 520) the astrological works of Michael Scot, on vellum, 
with an illuminated portn^t of him at the beginning. 

1 Onido Bonatti.] An astrologer of Forll, on whose skill 
Guide da Montefeltro, lord of that place, so much relied, that 
he is reported never to have gone into battle, except in the 
hour recommended to him as fortunate by Bonatti. 

Landino and Vellutello speak of a book which he com- 
posed on the subject of his art. Macchiavelli mentions him 
in the History of Florence, 1. 1. p. 34, ed. 1550. **He flourished 
about 1230 and 1260. Though a learned astronomer, he was 
seduced by astrology, through which he was greatly In fkvol 
with many princes of that time. His many works are mlS' 
erably spoiled by it/' Bettinelli, Risorgimento d^Jtaiim^ t, i. 
p. lis. 8vo. 1786. lie is referred to in Brown's Vulgar Er- 
mrs, b. 4, c. 12. 

> Asdente.] A shoemaker at Parnia, who deserted his bus!* 
nesa to practise the arts of divination. How mudi this mac 
had attracted the public notice appears from a passage in 
oar author's Convito, p. 179, where it is said, in speaking of 
the derivation of the word " noble," that " if those who were 
best known were accounted the most noble, Asdente, the 
shoemaker of Parma, would be more noble than any one in 
that city." 

* Cain with fork of tharns.l By Cain and the thonui, oi 
virbat is still vulgarly called the Man in the Moon, the Poet 
denotes that luminary. The same superstition is alladed to 
.n the Paradise, Canto ii. 53. The curious reader may con- 
iidt Brand on Popular Antiquities, 4to. 1813. vol. ii. p. 4W^ 
%nd Donee's Illustrations of Shakspeare, Svo. JW)?, v. I. p. 16 

154 1HE VISION. 127-148 

For she good service did thee in the gloom 

Of the deep wood " This said, both onward moved 



i*tni in the eighth cbcle, which bears the name of Maleboloc^ 
they look down from the bridge that passes over its SKh 
gulf, upon the barterers or public peculators. These are 
plunged in a lake of boiling pitch, and guarded by Demons, 
to whom Virgil, leaving Dante apart, presents himself; and 
license being obtained to pass onward, both pursue their 

Thus we from bridge to bridge, with other talk. 
The which my drama cares not to rehearse, 
Pass'd on ; and to the summit reaching, stood 
To view another gap, within the round 
Of Malebolge, other bootless pangs. 

Marvellous darkness shadow'd o'er the place. 

In the Venetians' arsenal* as boils 
Through wintry months tenacious pitch, to smear 
Their unsound vessels ; for the inclement time 
Sea-faring men restrains, and in that while 
His bark one builds anew, another stops 
The ribs of his that hath made many a voyage. 
One hammers at the prow, one at the poop. 
This shapeth oars, that other cables twirls, 
The mizen one repairs, and main-sail rent ; 
So, not by force of fire but art divine, 
BoU'd^ here a glutinous thick mass, that round 
Limed all the shore beneath. I that beheld. 
But therem naught distinguished, save the bubbles 
Raised by the boiling, and one mighty swell 
Heave,' and by timis subsiding fall. While there 

^ In the Venetians* araenfU.} 

Come dentr'ai Naval della gran terra, 
Tra le lacune del mar d*Adria posta, 
fcJerban la pece la tngata gonte, 
Ad uso di lor navi e di lor trlremf ; 
Vet solcar pol sicuri 11 maro ondoso, &c. 

RwxeUai, Le Jifi, v. 165. 
Dryden secras to have had the passage in the text before 
him in his Annus Mirabilis, st. 146, &c. 

s BoWd.] Vidi flumen magno de Inferno procedere ardemi 
fttque plceum. Mheriei Fi$iOf $ 17 
■ — ^— — One might f eieetl 

Vidi etlam os putei magnum llammas emlttenletn, et DtUK 
%mtum nui c deorsnm descendentom. Jflberici ^ieto % 1 1 

89-54. HELL, Canto XXI. 155 

I fix'd my ken below, " Mark ! mark I" my guide 
Exclaiming, drew me towards him from the placo 
Wherein I stood. I tmn'd myself, as one 
Impatient to behold that which beheld 
He needs must shmi, whom sudden fear unmans, 
That he his flight delays not for the view. 
Behind me I SacenCd a devil black. 
That running up advanced along the rock. 
Ah ! what fierce cruelty his look bespake ! 
In act how bitter did he seem, with wmgs 
Buoyant outstretch'd and feet of nimble6t tread. 
His shoulder, proudly eminent and sharp. 
Was with a sinner charged ; by either haunch 
He held him, the foot's sinew griping fast. 

" Ye of our bridge !" he cried, " keen-talon'd fiends. 
Lo I one of Santa Zita's elders.' Him 
Whelm ye beneath, while I return for more. 
That land hath store of such. All men are there. 
Except Bonturo, bartereis :* of * no' 
For lucre there an ' aye' is quickly made." 

Him dashing down, o'er the rough rock he tum'd ; 
Nor ever after thief a mastiff loosed 
Sped with like eager haste. That other sank. 
And forthwith writhing to the surface rose. 
But those dark demons, shrouded by the bridge. 
Cried, " Here the hallow'd visage* saves not : here 
Is other swimming than in Serchio's wave,* 
Wherefore, if thou desire we rend thee not, 
Take heed thou mount not o'er the pitch." This «aiii, 
They grappled him with more than hundred hooks, 
And shouted : ** Cover'd thou must sport thee here ; 
So, if thou canst, in secret mayst thou filch." 
E'en thus the cook bestirs him, with his grooms, 

1 Otu of Santa Ztta's dders.\ The eiders or chief ma^s 
Lates of Lacca, where Santa Zita was held in especial ven* 
natkm. The name of this sinner is snpposed to have been 
Ifartino Botaio. 

* Exufi BontMTo, barterer».\ This is said ironically o. 
Bootoro de' Dati. By barterert are meant peculators, of 
every description; all who traffic the interests of the put lie 
ior tneir own private advantage 

* ne kallow^dfrisage.} A representation of the head of ow 
^vionr worshipped at Lncca. 

* Is &tket swimming than in Serchio's ioav«.] 

Qoi A nuota altrimenti che nel Serchio. 

Archie is the river that flows by Lucca. 8o Pnlci^ SIoci 
Hat((n c. iiiv. 

Qui si nuota nel sangne, e nor. nci Sen.Iiio 

156 THE VISIOM. Kr«8 

To thriist the flesh^ into thA caldron down 
With flesh-hooks, that it float not on the top. 

Me then my guide bespake : " Lest they dtaacry 
That thou art here) behind a craggy rock 
Bend low and screen thee : and whate'er of force 
Be oflTer^d me, or insult, fear thou not ; 
For I am well advised, who have been erst 
In the like fray." Beyond the bridge's head 
Therewith he pass'd ; and reachmg the sixth pier. 
Behooved him then a forehead terror-proof. 

With storm and fury, as when dogs rush foith 
Upon the poor man's back, who suddenly 
From whence he standeth makes his suit ; so rusb'ii 
Those from beneath the arch, and against him 
Their weapons all they pointed. He, aloud : 
" Be none of you outrageous : ere your tine 
Dare seize me, come forth from among you one, 
Who having heard my words, decide he then 
If he shall tear these limbs." They shouted loud. 
" Go, Malacoda !" Whereat one advanced, 
The others standing firm, and as he came, 
" What may this turn avail him ?" he exclaim'd 

"Believest thou, Malacoda I I had come 
Thus far from all your skirmishing secure,*' 
My teacher answer'd, " without will divine 
And destiny propitious ? Pass we then ; 
For so Heaven's pleasure is, that I should lead 
Another through this savage wilderness." 

Forthwith so fell his pride, that he let drop 
The instrument of torture at his feet. 
And to the rest exclaim'd : " We have no power 
To strike him." Then to me my guide : *' O tht u ! 
Who on the bridge among the crags dost sit 
IjOW crouching, safely now to me return." [fiendf 

I rose, and towards him moved with speed ; the 
Meantime all forward drew : me terror seized. 
Lest they should break the compact they had made. 
Thus issuing from Caprona,' once I saw 
Th' infantry, dreading lest his covenant [round 

The foe should brea^; so close he hemm'd them 

> Tke JUth.\ In eundem numen corruunt: mnamquti 
assnrgentes, ac denuo recidentes, tamdiu ibidem cmclanmr, 
jonec in morem carniam excocti, &.c. Alheriei Fisw, $ 17. 

* fhnm Gapr<ma.] The siirrcnder of the castle of Capronn 
to the combined forces of Florence and Lacca, on coodlUoo 
Uiat the garrison should march out in safety, to which even 
Daote was a witneet, took place in 139n. See G ViUam 
HJsl.. lib viKc. 13« 

9^m, HELL, CAirro XXL 15: 

I to my leader's vide adhered, mine eyes 
With fix'd and motionless obeenr^ce bent 
On their unkindly visage. They their hooks 
Protruding, one the other thus bespake : 
" Wilt thou I touch him on the hip?" To whom 
Was answered : <' Even so ; nor miss thy aim." 

But he, who was in conference with my guide, 
Tum'd rapid round ; and thus the demon spake : 
" Stay, stay thee, Scarmiglione I" Then to us 
He added : " Farther footing to your step 
This rock aJQbrds not, shiver'd to the base 
Of the sixth arch. But would ye still proceed. 
Up by this cavern go : not distant far. 
Another rock will yield you passage safe. 
Yesterday,* later by five hours than now. 
Twelve hundred threescore years and six had fill'd 
The circuit of their course, since here the way 
Was broken. Thitherward I straight dispatch 
Certain of these my scouts, who shall espy 
If any on the surface bask. With them 
60 ye : for ye shall find them nothing fell. 
Come, Alichino, forth," with that he cried, 
" And Calcabrina, and Cagnazzo' thou ! 

^ Yesterday.] This passage fixes the era of Dante's descent 
at Good Friday, in the year 1300, (34 years from oar blessed 
Lord's incarnation being added to 1966,) and at the thirty- 
fifth year of our Poet's age. See Canto 1. v. 1. 

The awfal event allnded to, the Evangelists inform ns, 
happened '* at the ninth hoar," that is, oar sixth, when *' the 
rocks were rent," and the convubiion, according to Dante, 
was felt even in the depths of Hell. See Canto xU. v. 38. 

* Ca/^Mzto.] Pulci introduces some of these demons in o 
vrry pleasant adventare, related near the beginning of the 
Fi-oond Canto of his Morganto Maggiore : 

Non senti tn, Orlando, in quella tomba 
Qaelle parole, che colui limbomba ? 

lo voglio andar a scoprlr quelle avello, 
LA dove e* par che quelia voce s'oda, 
Ed escane Cagnazzo, e Farfarelloj 
O libicocco, col suo Malacoda ; 
E finalmente s'accostava a qaello, 
Peii> che Orlando questa impresa loda. 
E disse; scuopri, se vi Aissi dentro 
daanti ne piovon mai dal ciel nel centro. 

* Perceivest the words, Orlando, which this fellow 
0Dth in our ears oat of that tomb rebellow 1 

** 1*11 go, and straight the sepulchre uncase, 

FVom whence, as seems to me, that voice was heard ; 

Be F^arel and Cagnazzo to my face, 

Or libicoc with Malacoda, stirrd :*' 



158 THE VISION. Ild-iy ! 

The troop of ten let Barbariccia lead. 

With Libicocco, Dragfainazzo haste. 

Fang'd Ciriatto, Gramacane fierce. 

And Farfarello, and mad Rubicant 

Search ye around the bubbling tar. For these, 

In safety lead them, where the other crag 

Uninterrupted traverses the dens." 

I then : " O master !* what a sight is there ' 
Ah ! without escort, journey we alone, 
Which, if thou know the way, I covet not. 
Unless thy prudence fail thee, dost not mask 
How they do gnarl upon us, and their scowl 
Threatens us present tortures V* He replied : 
" I charge thee, fear not : let them, as they will, 
Gnarl on : *tis but in token of theur spite 
Against the souls who mourn in torment steep'd." 

To leftward o'er the pier they tum'd ; but each 
Had first between his teeth pressM close the tongua 
Toward their leader for a signal looking, 
Which he with sound obscene^ triumphant gave 



Virgil and Dante proceed, accompanied by the Demons, an4 
see other sinners of the same description in the same gait 
The device of Ciampoio, one of these, to escape from tiie 
Demons, who had laid hold on him. 

It hath been heretofore my chance to see 

Horsemen with martial order shifting camp. 

To onset sallying, or in muster ranged. 

Or in retreat sometimes outstretched for flight : 

Light-armed squadrons and fleet foragers 

Scouring thy plains, Arezzo I have I seen, 

And clashing tournaments, and tilting jousts, 

Now with the sound of trumpets, now of belJsy ^ 

Aal finally he drew near to the place ; 

Th* em prize Orlando praising with this word : 

" Uncase it, though within as many dwell, 

As ever were from heaven rain*d down to hell.*' 

' O matter !] Lombardi tells us that every edition, ezeept 
his favorite Nidobeatina, has " O me" printed separately, in- 
«tead of '* Orad." This is not the ease at least with Landl- 
ao*8 of 1484. But there is no end of these inaecnrades. 

s fVith sound obscene.] Compare the original with AAmIm 
sham «, Nubes. 165 :-~ 

— — 0-rfXirc) ( & vpuKTif iorlv. 

i-iti. HELL, Canto XXII. 1^4 

Tabois*^ or ngnalB made from castled heights, 

And with inyentions multiform, our own. 

Or introduced from foreign land ; but ne'er 

To such a strange recorder I beheld, 

In evolution moving, horse nor foot. 

Nor ship, that tack'd by sign from land or star 

With the ten demons on our way we went ; 
Ah) fearful company ! but in the churoh' 
With saints, with gluttons at the tavern's moss. 

Still earnest on the pitch I gazed, to mark 
All things whatever the chasm contained,' and thuee 
Who bum*d within. As dolphins^ that, in sign 
To mariners, heave high their arched backs. 
That thence forewam'd they may advise to save 
Their threatened vessel ; so, at intervals. 
To ease the pain, his back some sinner show'd. 
Then hid more nimbly than the lightning-glance* 

E'en as the frogs, that of a watery moat 
Stand at the brink, with the jaws only out. 
Their feet and of the trunk all else conceal'd, 
Thus on each part the sinners stood ; but soon 
As Barbariccia was at hand, so they 
Drew back under the wavo. I saw, and yet 
My heart doth stagger, one, that waited thus. 
As it befalls that oft one frog remains. 
While the next springs away : and Graffiacsin,* 

1 Titbort.} ** Tabor, a dram, a common accompaniment of 
war, is mentioned as one of the instraments of martial music 
in this battle (in Kichard Ccenr-de-Iion) with characteristi 
cal propriety. It was imported into the European armies 
firom the Saracens in the holy war. Joinville describes a 
superb bark or galley belonging to a Saracen chief which, he 
■ays, was fill^ with cymbals, tabors, and Saracen horns. 
Hist de S. Loys, p. 30." fVarUm's Hist, of English Poetry, 
V. i.^ 4, p. 167. 

* Mtks church.] This proverb is repeated \>y Pulci. Morg- 
llagg., c ztU. 

s ffhaU*er the chasm eontairi'd.] Monti, in his Proposta, 
latcrprets " contegno'* to mean, not " contents*' but ** state " 

* jis dolphins.] 

li lietl delfini 

Givan saltando sopra Tonde chiare, 
Che soglion di fortuna esser divin*. 

Frezzi, U Quadrir., lib. 1. cap. 15. 

* Ort^fiaean.] Faseli, in a note to his third Lecture, ob- 
serves, that " the Minos of Dante, in Messer Biagio da Cese* 
na, and his Charon, have been recognised by all ; but less 
the shivering wretch held over the barge by a hook, and evi- 
dently taken from this passage." He is speaking of Michael 
Anfeio*8 Last Judgment. 

160 THE VISION. 35-M 

Who of the fiends wan nearest, grappUng seized 
His clotted locks, and dragg'd him sprawting ap, 
That he appeared to me an otter. Each 
Abeady by their names I knew, so well 
When they were chosen I observed, and mark'd 
How one the other call'd. " O Rubicant ! 
See that this hide thou with thy talons flay," 
Shouted together all the cursed cre^. 

Then I : ** Inform thee. Master ! if thou may, 
What wretched soul is this, on whom their hands 
His foes have laid." My leader to hb side 
Approach'd, and whence he came inquired ; to whom 
Was answor'd thus : " Bom in Navarre's domain.' 
My mother placed me in a lord's retinue ; 
For she had borne me to a losel vile, 
A spendthrift of his substance and himself. 
The good king Thibault^ after that I served :' 
To peculating here my thoughts were tum'd. 
Whereof I give account in this dire heat." 

Straight Ciriatto, from whose mouth a tusk 

1 Bom in Navarre's domain.] The name of this pecnlatof 
Is said to have been Ciampolo. 

s The good king Thibault.] " Thibault I. King of Navarre, 
died on the 8th of Jane, 13«, as much to be commended for 
the desire he showed of aiding the war in the Holy Land, as 
reprehensible and faulty for his design of oppressing the 
rights and priviteses of the church ; on which account It is 
said that the whole kingdom was under an interdict for the 
space of three entire years.—'Thibault undoubtedly merits 
praise, as for his other endowments, so especiaiiy for his cul- 
tivation of the liberal arts, his exercise and knowledge of 
music and poetry, in which he so much excelled, that he was 
accustomed to compose verses and sing them to the viol, and 
to exhibit his poeUcal compositions publicly in his palace, 
that they might be criticised by all.** Mariana^ HiaUrf of 
Spainf b. xiii. c. 9. 

An account of Thibault, and two of his songs, with what 
were probably the original melodies, may be seen in Dr. 
Bumey's History of Music, v. ii. c. iv. His poems, which 
are in the French language, were edited by M. TEvAque de 
la Ravallidre. Paris, 1742, 2 vol. 12mo. Dante twice quotes 
one of his verses in the Treatise de Vulg. Eloq., lib. i. e. tx. 
and lib. 11. c. v., and refers to him a^in, lib. iL c vl. 

From ** the good king Thibault** are descended the good, 
but more unfortunate monarch, Louis XVI. of France, and 
*onsec[uently the present legitimate sovereign of that reabn. 
Bee Henault, Abr6g« Chron. 1253, 3, 4. 

* / terved.] Again Lmnbardi misrepresents the readings 
nf other editioiui, as he does throughout this Canto In several 
taistances, wherein he professes to follow that which he has 
selected for his model ; but, as these varieties regard certain 
delicacies of the orighial language, and do not aflfect th^ 
leuse, I shall not trouble my readers bv noticing tbein 

»&-02. IIELL, Ciuno XXH. 161 

Issued on either side, as from a boar, 

RippM him with one of these. Twixt evil clawto 

The mouse had fallen : but Barbariccia cried, 

Seizing him with both arms : " Stand thou apart* 

While I do fix him on my prong transpierced." 

Then added, turning to my guide his face, 

" Inquire of him, if more thou wish to le^m, 

Ere he again be rent." My leader thus : 

'* Then tell us of the partners in thy guilt ; 

Knowest thou any sprung of Latian land 

Under the tar?"—" I parted," he replied, 

** But now from one, who sojoum'd not far thentx) : 

So were I under shelter now with him. 

Nor hook nor talon then should scare me more." 

" Too long we suffer," Libicocco cried ; 
Then, darting forth a prong, seized on his arm, 
And mangled bore away the sinewy part. 
Him Draghinazzo by his thighs beneath 
Would next have caught ; whence angrily their chief; 
Turning on all sides round, with threatening brow 
Restrain'd them. When their strife a little ceased, 
Of him, who yet was gazing on his wound. 
My teacher thus without delay inquired : 
*' Who was the spirit, from whom by evil hap 
Parting, as thou hast told, thou camest to shore ?"•— 

" It was the friar Gomita,"* he rejoin*d, 
** He of Gallura, vessel of all guile, 
Who had his master's enemies in hand. 
And used them so that they commend him well. 
Money he took, and them at large dismiss'd ; 
So he reports ; and in each other charge 
Committed to his keeping play'd the part 
Of barterer to the height. With him doth herd 
The chief of Logodoro, Michel Zanche.' 
Sardinia is a theme, whereof their tongue 
Is never weary. Out ! alas ! behold 
That other, how he grins. More would I say. 
But tremble lest he mean to maul me sore." 

^ 7%e friar Oomita.^ He was intrusted by Nino de' Vis- 
oonti with the goverament of Gallura, one of the four jurisdic- 
tions Into which Sardinia was divided. Having his master'n 
enemies in his power, he toolc a bribe from them, and allowed 
them to escape. Mention of Nino will recur in the notes vo 
Oanto xzxiiin and in the Fuigatory, Canto viii. 

> Michel Zanehe.] The president of IiOgodoro, another of 
Uie four Sardinian jurisdictions See Canto xxxiU. Note ti 

162 THE VISION. »3-lft. 

Their captain then to Farfarello turning, 
Who roird his moony eyes in act to strike, 
Rebuked ])im thus : " Off, cursed bird ! avaunt !" 

" If ye desire to see or hear," he thus 
Quaking with dread resumed, " or Tuscan spiritu 
Or Lombard, I will cause them to appear 
Meantime let these ill talons bate their fury. 
So that no vengeance they may fear from them* 
And I, remaining in this self-same place. 
Will, for myself but one, make seven appear. 
When my shrill whistle shall be heard : for so 
Our custom b to call each other up.*' 

Cagnazzo at that word deriding grinn'd, 
Then wagg'd the head and spake : " Hear his devio» 
Mischievous as he is, to plunge him down." 

Whereto he thus, who fail'd not in rich store 
Of nice-wove toils : " Mischief, forsooth, extreme 
Meant only to procure myself more \(o.'* 

No longer Aliehino then refrain'd. 
But thus, the rest gainsaying, him bespake : 
** If thou do cast thee down, I not on foot 
Will chase thee, but above the pitch will beat 
My plumes. Quit we the vantage ground, and 1q 
The bank be as a shield ; that we may see, 
if singly thou prevail against us ail." 

Now, reader, of new sport expect to hear. 

They each one tum'd his eyes to the other chore 
He first, who was the hardest to persuade. 
The spuit of Navarre chose well his time. 
Planted his feet on land, and at one leap 
Escaping, disappointed their resolve. 

Them quick resentment stung, but him the mos^ 
Who was the cause of failure : in pursuit 
He therefore sped, exclaiming, " Thou art caught ^ 

But little it avail'd ; terror outstripped 
His following flight ; the other plunged beneath, 
And he with upward pinion raised hu breast : 
E'en thus the water-fowl, when she perceives 
The falcon near, dives instant down, while he 
Enraged and spent retires. That mockery 
In Calcabrina fury stur'd, who flew 
After him, with desire of strife inflamed: 
And, for the barterer had 'scaped, so tum'd 
His talons on his comrade. O'er the dike 
In grapple close they join'd ; but the othei proved 
A goshawk able to rend well his foe ; 
knd in the bulling lake both fell. The Jieat 

«>-14e. .iKLL, Cakto XXIII. 15| 

Was ninpice* soon between them ; but ia \ain 
To Jift themselves they strove, so fast were ghied 
Their pemions. Barbaricciay as the rest, 
That chance lamenting, four in flight dispatch'd 
From the other coast, with all their we^wns arm'd 
They, to their post on each side speedily 
Descending, stretch'd their hooks toward the fiends 
Who flonnder'd, inly burning from their scari: 
And we depaxting left them to tliat bmil. 



The enraged Demons pursue Dante, but he is preserved from 
them by Viigil. On reaching itie sixth guii', he beholds 
the poidshment of the hypocrites ; which is, to pace con- 
tionaily louad the golf under the pressure of caps nnd 
hoods, that are gilt on the outside, but leaden within, fie 
is addressed by two of these, Catalano and Loderingo, 
knights of Saint Mary, otherwise oalled Joyous Friars of 
Bologna. Caiiaphas is seen fixed to a cross on the ground, 
and lies so stretched along the way, that all tread on him 
in passing. 

In ffllence and in solitude we went. 
One first, the other following his steps, 
As minor friars journeying on their road. 

The present fray had tum*d my thoughts to muse 
Upon old ^sop's fable,' where he told 
What £ate unto the mouse and frog befell ; 
For language hath not sounds more like in sense, 
Than are these chances, if the origin 
And end of each be heedfully compared. 
And as one thought burets from another forth, 
So afterward from that another spremg. 
Which added doubly to my former fear. 
For thus I reasoned : " These through us have been 
So foiled, with loss and mockery so complete. 
As needs must sting them sore. If anger then 
Be to their evil will conjoined, more fell 
They shall ptusue us, than the savage hound 
Snatches the leveret panting Hwixt hbt jaws." 

Already I perceived my hair stand all 

> Umpire.] Schennidor. Thereader,if he thinlcsitworfb 
irhlle, may eonsult the Proposta of Mcott on this word, which 
with Lombardl, he would alter to sghermitor. 

3 JBt^^a fable.] The fable of the frog, who offered to car 
rv the mouse across a ditch, with the intention of drowning 
ban, when both were carried off by a kite. It is not among 
those Greek fables which go nnde : the name of Aiop. 

164 THE VISION. Vhsa 

Ou end with terror, and look'd eager back. * 

" Teacher," I thus began, " if speedily ' 

Thyself and me thou hide not, much I dread 
Those evil talons. Even now behind 
They urge us : quick imagination works 
So forcibly, that I already feel them." 

He answer'd: " Were I form'd of leaded glass. 
I should not sooner draw unto myself 
Thy outward image, than I now imprint 
That from within. This moment came thy thoughts 
Presented before mine, with similar act 
And countenance similar, so that from both 
I one design have framed. If the right coast 
Incline so much, that we may thence descend 
Into the other chasm, we shall escape 
Secure from this imagined pursuit" 

He had not spoke' his purpose to the end, 
When I from far beheld them with spread wings 
Approach to take us. Suddenly my guide 
Caught me, even as a mother that from sleep 
Is by the noise aroused, and near her sees 
The climbing fires, who snatches up her babe 
And flies ne'er pausing, careful more of him 
Than of herself, that but a single vest 
Clings round her limbs. Down from the j utt^ig beaeb 
Supine he cast him to that pendent rock, 
Which closes on one part the other chasm. 

Never ran water with such hurrying pace 
Adown the tube to turn a land-milPs wheel. 
When nearest it approaches to the spokes, 
As then along that edge my master ran, 
Carrying me in his bosom, as a child. 
Not a companion. Scarcely had his feet 
Reach'd to the lowest of the bed beneath, 
When over us the steep they reach'd : but fear 
In him was none ; for that high Providence 
Which placed them ministers of the fifth foss, 
Power of departing thence took from them all. 

There in the depth we saw a painted tribe, 
Who paced with tardy steps around, and wept, 

> He had not gpoke.] Cnmqne ego cum aneelis reltetaa 
starem pavidus, anus ex lllis tartareis ministrii honidis (Qa 
aonridos T) hispldis (On. hispldoB 1) aspectaque procenu fe** 
jinos adveniens me impellere, et qnomodociunqiM noceic 
conabator: cum ecce apostolns veloeias accnnent, Lieiiuc 
labito arrlplens In qneaaam locum glorloae prokolt vltbin!» 
mbemi Vitw % 15 

fl&-iQii IIEIX, Canto XXIIi 18^ 

Faint in appeamnce and o'eiconne witii toil. 
Caps had they on, with hoods, that fell low down 
Before their eyes, in fashion Uke to those 
Worn by the monks in Cologne.' Their outsida 
Was overlaid with gold, dazzling to yiew, 
Bat leaden all withm, and of such weight. 
That Frederick's* compared t^ these were straw. 
Oh, everlasting wearisome attire ! 

We yet once more with them together tum*d 
To leftward, on their dismal moan intent. 
But by the weight oppressM, so slowly came 
llie fainting people, that our company 
'Was changed, at every movement of the step. 

Whence I my guide address'd : " See that «hoa 
Some spirit, whose name may by h» deeds be known 
And to that end look round thee as thou go*si." 

Then one, who understood the Tuscan voice, 
Cried after us aloud : '* Hold in your feet, 
Ye who BO swiftly speed through the dusk air. 
Perchance from me thou shalt obtain thy wish." 

Whereat my leader, turning, me bespake : 
" Pause, and then onward at Uieir pace proceeds" 

I stay'd, and saw two spirits in whose look 
Impatient eagerness of mind was mark'd 
To overtake me ; but the load they bare 
And nanow path retarded their approach. 

Soon as arrived, they with an eye askance 
Perused me, but spake not : then turning, each 
To other thus conferzing said : ** This one 
Seems, by the action of his throat, alive ; 
And, be they dead, what privilege allows 
They walk unmantled by the cumbrous stole?" 

Then thus to me : ** Tuscan, who visitest 
The college of the mourning hypocrites. 
Disdain not to instruct us who thou art" 

** By Amo's pleasant stream," I thup i^ephed, 
< In the great city I was bred and grjw, 
And wear the body 1 have ever worn. 
But who are ye, from whom such mighty grief, 
As now I witness, courseth down your cheeks? 

What tonnent breaks forth in this bitter wo?" 

■ ■ — -^— ..^i— 

> Monk* in Cologne.\ They wore their cowls nnnsnally 

9 Frederick'';] The Emperor Frederick II. is said to have 
panished those who were guilty of high treason by wrapplu|r 
'Jtetn np In lead, and casting them into a furnace. 

1«6 TH£ VISION. lOi-114 

" Our bonnets gleaming bright with orange hue/' 
One (/f them answer'd, " are so leaden gross, 
That with their weight they make the balances 
To crack beneath them. • Joyous friars' we were. 
Bologna's natives ; Catalano I, 
He Loderingo named ; and by thy land 
Together taken, as men use to take 
A single and indifferent arbiter, 
To reconcile their strifes. How there we sped, 
Gardingo's vicinage' can best declare." 

" O friars !" I began, " your miseries — " 
But there brake off, for one had caught mine 6ye« 
Fix'd to a cross with three stakes on the ground : 
He, when he saw me, writhed himself, tluoughout 

^ Our bonnets gleaming brigkt vnth orange hue.] It la ob 
served by Ventun, that the word " ranee'* does not here aig 
nify " rancid or disgustful," as it is explained by the old com 
mentators, but *' orange-colored," in which aenae it occurs ii: 
the Purgatory, Canto ii. 9. 

By the erroneoua interpretation Mil ton appears to have 
been misled ; *' Ever aince the day peepe, till now the auc 
was grown somewhat ranke.** Prone fVorke, v. i. p. IGO, ed 

a Joyous friars.] "Those who ruled the city of Florence 
on the part of the Ghlbellines, perceiving this discontent and 
murmuring, which they were fearAil might produce a rebel 
lion against themselves, in order to satisfy the people, made 
choice of two knights, Fratl Godenti (joyous friars) of Bo 
logna, on whom they conferred the chief power in Florence , 
one named M. Catalano de' Malavolti, the other M. Loderingc 
di Liandolo ; one an adherent of the Gueluh, the other of the 
Ghibelline party. It is to be remarked, that the Joyous 
Friars were called Knighta of St. Alary, and became knlghtd 
on taking that habit: their robea were white, the luantle 
aable, and the arma a white field and red cross with two stars : 
their office waa to defend widows and orphans ; they were to 
act aa mediatora ; they had internal regulationa like other 
religiooa bodiea. The above-mentioned M. Loderingo was 
the founder of that order. But it was not long tofore ttiey 
too well deserved the appellation given them, and were 
found to be more bent on enjoying themselves than on any 
other object. These two Man were called in by the Floren 
tinea, and had a reaidence asaigned them in the palace be 
longing to the people, over against, the Abbey. Such waa 
the dependence placed on the character of their order, that 
it waa expected they would be impartial, and would aave the 
commonwealth any nnneceasary expense ; instead of which, 
though inclined to opposite partiea, they aecretly and hypo 
critically concurred in promoting their own advantage rather 
than the public good." O. ViUani^ b. vii. c. 13. This hap 

* Oardingo*e vicinage.] The name of that port of the eity 
which waa inhabited by the powerftil Ghibelline flunlly a 
the Ilberti, and destroyed under the partial and Iniqvilotii 
administration of Catalano and Ixxleringo. 

iis-151 HELL, Canto XXIII. 167 

Distorted, ruffling with deep sighs his beard. 

And Catalano, who thereof was 'ware, 

Thus spake : << That pierced spirit,' whom intent 

Thou dew'st, was he who gave the Pharisees 

Counsel, that it were fitting for one man 

To suffer for the people. He doth lie 

Transverse ; nor any passes, but him first 

Behooves make feeling trial how each weigha 

In straits like this along the foss are placed 

The father of his consort,' and the rest 

Partakenf in that council, seed of ill 

And sorrow to the Jews." I noted then 

How Vii^l gazed with wonder upon him, 

Thus abjectly extended on the cross 

In banishment eternal. . To the friar 

He next his words address'd : " We pray ye ;el!, 

[f so be lawful, whether on our right 

Lies any opening in the rock, whereby 

We both may issue hence, without constraint 

On the dark angels, that compell'd they come 

To lead us from this depth." He thus replied : 

" Nearer than thou dost hope, there is a rock 

From the great' circle moving, which o'ersteps 

Each vale of horror, save that here his cope 

Is shatter'd. By the ruin ye may mount : 

For on the side it slants, and most the height 

Rises below." . With head bent down awhile 

My leader stood ; then spake : " He wam'd us ill/ 

Who yonder hangs the sinners on his hook." 

To whom the friar : " At Bologna erst 
I many vices of the devil heard ; 
Among the rest was said, < He is a liar,' 
* And the father of lies !* " When he had spoke. 
My leader with large strides proceeded on. 
Somewhat disturb'd with anger in his look. 

I therefore left the spirits heavy laden, 
/Vnd, following, his beloved footsteps mark'd. 

1 That pierced spirit.] Caiapbas. 

* 7%e father of his consort.] Annas, father-in-law to Col' 

* Oreat.] In the former editions it was printed "nest" 
The error was otraerved by Bir. Carlyle. 

* He toanCd us ill.] He refers to the falsehood told him 
by the demon. Canto xxi. 108. 

» He is a liar.] « He Is a liar and the father of it." ./Wkn, 
c viii. 44. Dante had perhaps heard this text from one of thf 
pullets in Bologna. 

loe THE VISION. i-«4 



Under the escort of his faithful master, Dante not witliou 
difficalty makes his way ont of the sixth gulf: and in tbik 
seventh, sees the robbers tormented by venomoas and pes 
tilent serpents. The soul of Vanni Fncci, who had pillaged 
the sacristy of Saint James in Plstoia, predicts some co- 
lamities that impended over that city, and over the Florea 

In the year's early nonage,* when the sun 
Tempers his tresses in Aquarius' urn, 
And now towards equal day the nights recede ; 
When as the rime upon the earth puts on 
Her dazzling sister's image,^ but not long 
Her milder sway endures ; then riseth up 
The village hind, whom fails his wintry store,' 
And looking out beholds the plain around 
All whiten'd ; whence impatiently he smites 
His thighs, and to his hut returning in, 
There paces to and fro, wailing his lot, 
As a discomfited and helpless man ; 
Then comes he forth again, and feels new hojie 
Spring in his bosom, finding e'en thus soon 
The world hath changed its countenance, grasps his 
And forth to pasture drives his little flock : [crook. 
So me my guide dishearten'd, when I saw 
His troubled forehead ; and so speedily 
That ill was cured ; for at the fallen bridge 
Arrivmg, towards me with a look as sweet. 
He tum'd him back, as that I first beheld 
At the steep mountain's foot. Regarding well 
The ruin, and some counsel first maintain'd 
With his own thought, he open'd wide his arm 

> In t&0 year's early nonage.] " At the latter part of Jan 
nary, when the sun enters into Aquarius, and the equinox I2 
drawing near, when the hoar-frosts in the mominff often weai 
the appearance of snow, but are melted by the rising sun.** 

• Her dazzlin/f 9i8ter*8 ima^e.] 

Xiyvdv ^(Xaivavy aU\nv itvf^ Kdoiv. 

JEtckyl. Septem Contra Tkebae, v. 490, Blon^fiMTe edit 


injD.oD (k'lovpos, iixpla k6vi5, 

JEsehjfl. Jiffamemnon, v. 478, Blcwifitld 

WhomfaUt Jus vintry etore.} 
A cui la roba manca. 
Bo In the Furgatorio, c. xiii. 61. 

Cosi gli ciechi a cui la roba mantxt 

25-5<. HELL, Castto XXIV. I6t| 

And took me up. As one, who, while he wi^rks, 
Computes his labor's issue, that he seems 
Still to foresee the effect ; so lifting me 
Up to the summit of one peak, he iix'd 
liis eye upon another. '* Grapple that," 
8aid he, " but first make proof, if it be such 
As will sustain thee." For one capp'd with lead 
This were no journey. Scarcely he, though hght, 
And I, though onwsurd push'd from crag to crag, 
Could mount. And if the precinct of this coast 
Were not less ample than the last, for him 
I know not, but my strength had surely faiPd. 
But Malebolge all toward the mouth 
Inclining of the nethennost abyss, 
The site of every valley hence requires. 
That one side upward slope, the other fall. 

At length the point from whence^ the utmost stone 
Juts down, we reached ; soon as to that arrived. 
So was the breath exhausted from my lungs, 
X could no further, but did seat me there. 

" Now needs thy best of man ;" so spake my guide : 
" For not on downy plumes,' nor under shade 
Of canopy reposing, fame is won ; 
Without which whosoe'er consumes liis days, 
Leaveth such vestige of himself on earth. 
As smoke in air, or foam upon the wave. 
Thou therefore rise : vanquish thy weariness' 
By the mind's efibrt, in each struggle form'd 
To vanquish, if she suffer not the weight 
Of her corporeal frame to crush her down. 

> IVom whence.] Mr. Carlyle notes the mistake in my fiv 
ner translation ; and I have corrected it accordingly. 
'3 A*ot on dovmy plumes.] 

Lettor, tu del pensar che» senzs ardire, 
Senza af&nno sofiUr, Taomo non puote 
Fama acqaistar, ne gran cose fomire. 

Fniio degli Wtertif Dittamojulot lib. iv cap. (v. 

Nessnn mai per faggir, o per rlposo, 
Venne in altezza fama ovver in gloria. 

FVezzit R Q^adrir^ lib. li. cap. IL 

Signer, non sotto Tombra in piaggia molle 
Tra fonti e llor, tra Ninfe e tra Sirene, 
Ma in cima airerto e faticoso colle 
Delia virtu riposte 6 il nostro bene. 

Tas$Of O. L., e. zvii. ht, 61 
Vanquteh thy weariness.] 

Qnin corpus onnstnm 

Hestemis vitiis animam qnoque pnegravat nnft, 
A tque aflSgit humi dlvins poxticalani aars. 

Hor. Sat., ii. lib, U TO 

170 THE VISION. »-W 

A longer ladder yet remains to scale 
From these to have escaped sufficeth not. 
If well thou note me, profit by my words." 

I straightway rose, and showed myself less siien< 
Than I in truth did feel me. " On," I cried, 
" For I am stout and fearless." Up the rock 
Our way we held, more rugged than before. 
Narrower, and steeper far to climb. From taVic 
I ceased not, as we joumey'd, so to seem 
Least faint ; whereat a voice from the other foss 
Did issue forth, for utterance suited ill. 
Though on the arch that crosses there I st»id. 
What were the words I knew not, but who spoke 
Seem'd moved in anger. Down I stoop'd to look ; 
But my quick eye might reach not to the depth 
For shrouding darkness ; wherefore thus I spako * 
" To the next circle, teacher, bend thy steps. 
And from the wall dismoimt we ; for as hence 
I hear and understand not, so I see 
Beneath, and naught discern." — " I aiiswer not," 
Said he, " but by the deed. To fair request 
Silent performance maketh best return." 

We from the bridge's head descended, where 
To the eighth mound it joins ; and then, the chastn 
Openmg to view, I saw a crowd within 
Of serpents* terrible, so strange of shape 
And hideous, that remembrance in my veins 
Yet shrinks the vital current Of her sands* 
Let Lybia vaunt no more ; if Jaculus, 
Fareas and Chelyder be her brood, 
Cenchris and Amphisbaena, plagues so dire 
Or in such numbers swarming ne'er slie show'd. 
Not with all Ethiopia, and whate'er 
Above the Erythraean sea is spawn'd. 

Amid this dread exuberance of wo 
Ran naked spirits wing'd with hon'd fear, 
Nor hope had they of crevice whero to hide, 
Or heliotrope* to charm them out of view. 

^ 8erpents.\ Vidl locum horridum tenebrosum foBtoribaa 
exhalantibus flammU crepltantibns Berpentibus, draeonllma 
repletum. AlherUi Fiaio^ $ 12. 

* Of her aanda.} Compare Lucan, Phan., lib. li. 703. 

* Heliotrope.] Virldl colore est (gemma heliotroploa) noa 
;ta acuto sed nubllo magis et represso, stelUs ponlceis inper* 
Bpena. Causa nomlnis de eflecm lapidls est et potestatab 
Dejecta in labris eneia radios soils mntat sanffolneo reper* 
cassii, ntraqne aquft splendorem aCris abjiclt et avertit 
Etiam illnd posse dicitnr, rt herbft ejasdem nominis mixta 
*rl prccantatlon'.ba8 legitiirJs consecrata, earn, a qqoeiinqiMi 

ghHl. H£LIh CAirro XXIV. 17] 

With serpeuts were their hands behind them hound.. 

Which through their reins infiz'd the tail and itead, 

Twisted in folds before. And lo ! on one 

Near to our side, darted an adder up, 

And, where the neck is on the shoulden tied, 

Transpierced him. Far more quickly than e'er pen 

Wrote O or I, he kindled, bum'd, and changed 

To ashes all, pour'd out upon the earth. 

When there dtssolyed he lay, the dust again 

Uproird spcmtaneouB, and the self same form 

Instant resumed. So mighty sages tell. 

The Arabian Phoenix,' when five hundred years 

Haye well-nigh circled, dies, and springs forthwith 

Renascent : blade nor herb throughout his life 

He tastes, but tears of frankincense' alone 

And odorous amomum : swaths of nard 

And myrrh his funeral shroud. As one that falls, 

He knows not how, by force demoniac dragg'd 

To earth, or through obstruction fettering up 

gestabitnr, Bubtrahat visibus obvionun. Soiinvs^ c. zl. *' A 
Btone," says Boccaccio, la his humorous tale of Calandrino, 
** which we lapidaries call heliotrope, of such extraordinary 
virtue, that the bearer of it Is effectually concealed from the 
sight of all present." Decam^ 6. viU. N. 3. 

In Chiabrera*s Rnggiero, Scaltrimento begs of Sofia, who is 
sending him on a perilous errand, to lend Urn the heliotrope 

In mia man Ada 

J/elitropia, per cul^possa Involarmi 

Secondo 11 niio talento agU occhi altrul. c. vi. 

Trust to ro^ band the heliotrope, by which 
I may at will from others' eyes conceal me. 

Compare Ariosto, II Negromante, a. 3, s. 3. Fnlei, Morg 
Slagg., c zxv., and Fortlgnerra, Sicciardetto, e. z. st. 17. 

Gower, in his Confesslo Amantis, lib. viL enameiates it 
among the jewels in the diadem of the sun : — 

■ Jaspis and helitropius. 

> llu Arabian Phmnix.\ This is translated flrom OvltL 

Una est quae reparat, seque ipsa reseminat ales ; 
AMyilt Phnnica voeant. Nee fruge neque herbis, 
ded thuris laerymis, et sueco vivit amomi. 
Hbo nU qi^que sua complevit seeula vitae, 
Ilicis in lamis, tremulcve cacnmine palms, 
Ungnlbos et pando nldum sibi constrait ore. 
dua simul nt casias, et nardi lenis aristas, 
QuBtwaqne cum fuly& substravit cinnama mynhft, 
8e soper imponit, finitque in odoribus Bvom. 
itee also Petnurchi Canzone : — 
Qaal piUt fcc. 
* Tear$ uffrankineeuse.] 

Incense e minra i qnello onde si pasoe. 

Fasio degil Uberti, IMttaraondo, ir a goriceoos descrt)»tion ci 
*he Phoenlz, lib f i. cajk y. 

ITS THE 7ISI0N. 119-1« 

In chains invisible the powers of man, 
Who, risen from his trance, gazeth around/ 
Bewilder'd with the monstrous agony 
He hath endured, and wildly staring sighs ; 
So stood aghast the sinner when he rose. 

Oh ! how severe God's judgment, that deals out 
Such blows in stormy vengeance. Who he was« 
My teacher next inquired ; and thus in few 
He auswer'd : " Vanni Fucci* am I call'd, 
Not long since rained down from Tuscany 
To this dire gullet Me the bestial life 
And not the human pleased, mule that I was, 
Who in Pistoia found my worthy den." 

I then to Virgil : " Bid him stir not henca ; 
And ask what crime did thrust him hither : once 
A man I knew him, choleric and bloody." 

The sinner heard and feign'd not, but towards mt 
His mind durecting and his face, wherein 
Was dismal shame depictured, thus he spake : 
" It grieves me more to have been caught by thee 
In this sad plight, which thou beholdest, than 
When I was taken from the other life. 
I have no power permitted to deny 
What thou inquurest. I am doom'd thus low 
To dwell, for that the sacristy by me 
Was rifled of its goodly ornaments. 
And with the guilt another falsely charged. 
But that thou mayst not joy to see me thus. 
So as thou e'er shalt 'scape this darksome realm, 
Open thine ears and hear what 1 forebode. 
Reft of the Neri first Pistoia' pines ; 
Then Florence^ changeth citizens and laws ; 

^ Oa:etk around.} 

Sa ml levai aenza far plu parole, 

CogU occhl intorno stupldo mlrando, 
SI come rEpUentlco far snole. 

Frexiif II Quadrir., lib. U. cap. ill. 

s Vanni Fhuei.] He is said to have been an illegitimate 
i.ffsprlngof the family of Lazarl in Pistoia, and, having robbed 
tlie sacristy of the church of St. James in that city, to have 
charged Vanni della Nona with the sacrilege ; in conseqaonce 
of which accusation the latter suffered death. 

* PitUria.} '* In May, 1301, the Bianchi party of Pistoia, 
with the assistance and &vor of the Bianchi, whc ruled Flor 
Buce, drove out the party of the Neri fh>m the former plaoe^ 
lestroying their houses, palaces, and fiirms.** Oiov FUIaut^ 
UitL, lib. viii. c. Kliv. 

4 Then Florciu€,\ " Soon after the Bianchi will be ex* 
oelled ftom Florence, the Neri will prevail, and the laws aiid 
pc)i>le will be changed.*' 

114-150. HELIh Camto XXV. 178 

From Valdimogn,* drawn by wrathful Man, 
A vapor rises, wrapt in turbid mists. 
And sharp and eager driveth on the storm 
With arrowy hurtUng o'er Piceno's field, 
Whence suddenly the cloud shall burst, and strike 
ICach helpless Bianco prostrate to the ground. 
This have I told, that grief may rend Uiy heart.*' 



The sceiilegioas Facci vents his fViry <d blasphemy, is seised 
by serpents, and flying is punned by Uncus In tlie form of 
a Centaur, who is described with a swarm of serpenu on 
his haunch, and a dragon on his shoulders breathing forth 
fire. Our Poet then meets with the spirits of tliree of his 
countrymen, two of whom undergo a marrellous transfor- 
mation in hii presence. 

When he had spoke, the sinner raised his hands' 
Pointed in mockery, and cried : ** Take them, God ! 

^ JiVom FtddiTHogra.] The commentators explain this pro- 
phetical threat to allude to the victory obtained by the Mar- 
quis Morello Malaspina of Valdlmagra, (a tract of conntry 
now called the Lunigiana,) who pat himself at the bead of 
the Neri, and defeated their opponents, the Bianchi, in the 
Campo Plceno, near Pistoia, soon after the occurrence related 
in the preceding note on v. 1^ Of this engagement I find no 
mention in Villani. Balbo (Vita di Dante, v. iL p. 143) refers 
to Gerini, Memorie Storiche di Lunigiana, tom. U. p. 1S3, for 
the whole history of this Morello, or Moroello. Cnrrado Ma- 
laspina is introduced in the eighth Cajito of the Purgatory, 
where it appears, that although on the present occasion they 
espoused contrary sides, most important favors were never- 
theless conferred by that fiimlly on our Poet, at a subsequent 
period of his exile, in 1307. 
s His kamda.} 

Le manl alzb, con ambeduo le fiche. 

E fe le ficbe a Die *i saperfoo vermo. 

n Q^adrir^ lib. U. ca^ xii. 
To vidi rira pol con crudel faccia ; 
E fe le nche a Dio 11 mostro rio, 
Btringendo i denti ed alxando le braccia. 

A. lib. iiL cap. x. 

Poi facea con le man le fiche al clelo 
Dicendo : Togli Iddio ; che puol piu farmi t 

V Ual. LibenUa, c. xti. 
*' The practice of thrusting out the thumb between the firs: 
and second fingers, to express the feelings of insult and con- 
tempt, has prevailed very generally among the nations of 
Europe, and for many ages had been denominated 'makinjf 
the ^,' or described at least by some equivalent expression 
D0ua^» JUnHtttHmu of 8hak»pearo, vol. i. p. 493, ed. 1807 
The passage in the original text has not escaped this diligeD' 


I level them at thee." From that day forth , 
The serpents were my friends ; for round his neck 

e of them rolling twisted, as it said, 
*iiie silent, tongrue I*' Another, to his arms 
(Jpgliding, tied them, rivetine itself 
So close, it took from them the power to movo. 

Pistoia ! ah, Fistoia ! why dost douht 
To turn thee into ashes, cumbering earth 
No longer, since in evil act so far 
Thou hast outdone thy seed ?* I did not mark. 
Through all the gloomy circles of the abyss. 
Spirit, that swelled so proudly 'gainst his God ; 
Not him," who headlong fell from Thebes. He ilod. 
Nor utter'd more ; and after him there came 
A. centaur full of fury, shouting, " Where, 
Where is the caitLH" On Maremma's marsh' 
Swarm not the serpent tribe, as on his haimch 
They swarm'd, to where the human face begins 
Behind his head, upon the shoulders, lay 
^With open wings a dragon, breathing fire 
On whomsoever he met To me my guide : 
"^6acus^ is this, who underneath the rock 
Of Aventine spread oft a lake of blood. 
He, from his brethren parted, here must tread 
A different journey, for his fraudful theft 
Of the great herd that near him stall'd ; whence found 
His felon deeds their end, beneath the mace 
Of stout Alcides, that perchance laid on 
A hundred blows,* and not the tenth was felt" 

While yet he spake, the centaur sped away . 
And under us thi^e spirits came, of whom 
Nor I nor he was ware, till they exclaim'd, 
'* Say who are ye !" We then brake off discounr. 
Intent on these alone. I knew them not : 
.But, as it chanceth oft, befell, that one 
Had need to name another. " Where," said h0i 
^Doth Cianfa* lurk ?" I, for a sign my guide 
Should stand attentive, placed against my lips 

},A^y »ted.\ Thy ancestry. 

' 3 A*0tAtm.J Capaneus. Canto xiv 

" On Maremma^s nuirsh.] An extensile tract near tbe lea- 
than of Tnseany. 

* CaeuM.] Viigil, JEn.y lib. vlU. 193 

* Jl hundred bUnotJ] Less than ten blows, ont of the hnor 
dreJ Hercnles gave him, had deprived him of feeUng. 

* Cianfa.] He issald to havi^ heen of the fhmily of Donat! 
St Florence. 

4i-<S. HELL, Canto XXV. 175 

The finger lifted. If, O reader ! now 
Thou be not apt to credit what I tell, 
No marvel ; for myself do scarce allow 
The witness of mine eyes. But as I look'd 
Toward them, lo ! a serpent with six feet 
Springs forth on one, and fastens full upon him ! 
His midmost graspM the belly, a forefoot 
Seized on each arm (while deep in either cheek^ 
He flesh'd his fangs) ; the hinder on the thighs 
Were spread, 'twixt which the tail inserted curl'd 
Upon the reins behind. I^y ne'er clasp'd^ 
A dodder'd oak, as round the other^s limbs 
The hideous monster intertwined his own. 
Then, as they both had been of burning wax, 
Each melted into other, mingling hues. 
That which was either now was seen no more. 
Thus up the shrinking paper,' ere it bums, 
A bro¥ni tint glides, not turning yet to black, 
And the clean white expires. The other two 
Look'd on, exclaiming, " Ah ! how dost thou change} 
AgneUo !^ See ! Thou art nor double now. 
Nor only one." The two heads now became 
One, and two figures blended in one form 
Appear'd, where both were lost. Of the four leiigthn 
Two arms were made : the belly and the chest, 

1 Jn either ekedc.] Ostendit mihi post hoe apostolus laeum 
magnom tetnun, et aqiue sulphnren plenum, in quo anima* 
mm multitudo demersa est, plenum serpentibus ac scorpioni- 
ina ; stabant vero ibi et dsemones serpentes tenentes et orri 
vultns et ca]rita hominnm cum eisdem serpentibus pe/cutien- 
les. JUberiei Fisiot $ 23. 

> Ivf iu*er elaep'd.] 

'Ordca icioods ipvis iirt^s riioi^ i^oftai, 

Euripides, Heevba, v. VH. 
Like ivy to an oak, how will I cling to her ! 

* Tliiu up the thrinking paper.] Many of the commentators 
suppose that by " papiro'^is here meant the wick of a lamp 
or candle, and Lombard! adduces an extract from Pier Cre* 
tcenzio (AgricolL, lib. vi. cap. ix.) to show that this use was 
then made of the plant But Tiraboschi has proved that pa- 
per made of linen came into use towards the latter half of the 
fSMnteenth century, and that the inventor of it was Pier da 
FaUano, who cairied on his manufactory in the city of Tre 
rlgi ; whereas paper of cotton, with, perhaps, some lineu 
nued, was used during the twelfth century. Star, della Lut 
ktd^ Vom» V. lib. L cap. iv. sect. 4. 

All my bowels crumble up to dust. 

I am a scribbled form, drawn with a pen 
Upon a parchment ; and against this firo 
Do I ihrlnk up. ShaJupearej K John, act v. so. 7 

4 JltntelloA Asnello Brunelleschi. 

176 THE VISION G^i(» 

The thighs aud legs, into such memlioiB changed 

Ab never eye hath seen. Of former shape 

All trace was vanish'd. Two, yet neither, seem'd 

That image miscreate, and so pass'd on 

With tardy steps. As underneath the scourge 

Of the fierce dog-star that lays hare the fiel£i, 

Shifting from brake to brake the lizard seems 

A flash of lightning, if he thwart the road : 

So toward the entrails of the other two 

Approachmg seem'd an adder all on fire, 

As the dark pepper-grain livid and swart. 

In that part,' whence our life is nourished first. 

One he transpierced ; then down before him fell 

Stretch'd out. The pierced spirit look'd on him, 

But spake not ; yea, stood motionless and yawnM, 

As if by sleep or feverous fit assail'd.* 

He eyed the serpent, and the serpent him. 

One from the wound, the other from the mouth 

Breathed a thick smoke, whose vapory columns ;o- o'd 

Lucan' in mute attention now may hear, 
Nor thy disastrous fate, Sabellus, tell. 
Nor thine, Nasidius. Ovid^ now be mute 
What if in warbling fiction he record 
Cadmus and Arethusa, to a snake 
Him changed, and her into a fountain clear, 
I envy not ; for never face to face 
Two natures thus transmuted did he sing, 
Wherein both shapes were ready to assume 
The other's substance. They in mutual guise 
So answered, that the serpent split his train 
Divided to a fork, and the pierced spirit 
Drew close his steps together, legs and thighs 
Compacted, that no sign of juncture soon 
Was visible : the tail, disparted, took 
The figure which the spirit lost ; its skin 
Boftening, his mdurated to a rind. 
The shoulders next I mark'd, that entering joined 

< JntkatpartA The navel. 

^ Jitifbji sleep or feverous fit assa£rd.\ 

O Rome ! thy head 

Is drown*d in sleep, and all thy body feV*i7. 

Ben Jonson*s Catalitt»t 

* Luean.] Phars., lib. ix. 766 and 793. 

Lucan di alcnn di qnestl poetando 
Ck>nta si eome Sabello e Nasidio 
Fii panti e trasformati ivi passando. 

Fhzio degU UherH^ DiUamondOt I. ▼ mp* TfH 

• Otnd.] Metam., lib. iv. «ind v 

J03-138. HELL, Canto XXV. 177 

The moDster'ft ann-pits, whose two shoiier feet 

So len^hen'd, as the others dwindling shrunk 

The feet behind them twisting up became 

That part that man conceals, which in the wretch 

Was cleft in twain. While both the shadowy smokt 

With a new color veils, and generates 

The excrescent pile on one, peeling it off 

From the other body, lo i upon his feet 

One upright rose, and prone the other fell. 

Not yet their glarmg and malignant lamp? 

Were shifted, though each feature changed beneath. 

Of him who stood erect, the mounting &ce 

Retreated towards the temples, and what there 

Superfluous matter came, shot out in ears [dragg'df 

From the smooth cheeks; the rest, not backward 

Of its excess did shape the nose ; and swell'd 

Into due size protuberant the lips. 

He, on the earth who lay, meanwhile extends 

His sharpen'd visage,* and draws down the ears 

Into the head, as doth the slug his horns. 

His tongue, continuous before and apt 

For utterance, severs ; and the other*s fork 

Closing unites. That done, the smoke was laid. 

The soul, transform'd into the brute, glides off. 

Hissing along the vale, and after him 

The otiier talking sputters ; but soon tum'd 

His new-grown shoulders on him, and in few 

Thus to another spake : *' Along this path 

Crawling, as I have done, speed Buoso^ now !" 

So saw I fluctuate in successive change 
The unsteady ballast of the seventh hold : 
And here if aught my pen' have swerved, events 
So strange may be its warrant. O'er mine eyes 
Confusion hung, and on my thoughts amaze. 

Yet scaped fliey not so covertly, but well 
I mark'd Sciancato i* he alone it was 

» His aharpeiCdvisage.] Compare Milton, P. L., b. x. 511. fcc 

> BuMo."] He is also said by some to have been or the 
Donatl fiimily ; but bjr others of the Abbati. 

■ My pen.] Lombard! justly prefers " la penna" to " la 
tinxna;'*^ but, when he tells us that the former is in tho 
Nidobeatina, and the latter in the other editions, he ought tc 
have excepted at least Landino*s of 1484, and Vellutello*s of 
1544, and, perhaps, many besides these. 

^ 5ct<meato.j Pnccio Sciancato, a noted robber, whose fam- 
ily, Ventnii says, he has not been able to discover. The 
liitin annotator on the Monte Cassino MS. informs us that be 
was one of the Galigai of Florence, the decline of whl*:!! 
house is mentioned in the Paradise, Canto xvi. 96. 

178 THEVISIOJN. 130,14b 

Of the three first that came, who changed not : tliou 
The other's fate, Gaville !^ still dost rue. 


Bemonnting by the steps, down which they had descended to 
the seventh gulf, they go forward to the arch that stretehei 
uver the eighth, and from thence behold anmborless flauo* 
whei^in are punished the evil counsellors, each flame con- 
taining a sinner, save one, In which were Diomede and 
Ulysses, the latter of whom relates the manner of his death. 

Florence, exult ! for thou so mightily 
Hast thriven, that o'er land and sea* thy wings 
Thou heatest, and thy name spreads over hell. 
Among the plunderers, such the three I found 
Thy citizens ; whence shame to me thy son, 
And no proud honor to thyself redounds. 

But if our minds,* when dreaming near the dawn, 
Are of the truth presageful, thou ere long 
Shalt feel what Prato* (not to say the rest) 
Would fain might come upon thee ; and that chance 
Were in good time, if it hefell thee now. 
Would so it were, since it must needs befall ! 
For as time* wears me, I shall grieve the more. 

We from the depth departed ; and my guide 

i OavUle.] Francesco Gnercio Cavalcante was killed at 
Gaville, near Florence ; and in revenge of his death several 
inhabitants of that district were put to death. 

* 0*er land and sea.} . 

For he can spread thy name o*ei lands and seas. 

Milton, Son. vlii 

* But if our minds.] 

Namque sub Auroram, jam dormitante lucern&, 
Somnia quo cemi tempore vera solent. 

Ovid, Epitt. zU. 

The same poetical superstition is alluded to in the Pwgn 
lory. Canto ix. and zxvii. 

« Shalt feel what Prato.] The poet prognosticates the ea 
lamlties which were soon to befall his native city, and whieh. 
he says, even her nearest neighbor, Prato, would wish hw 
The calamities more particularly pointed at are said to be the 
fall of a wooden bridge over the Arno, in May, 1304, where a 
larEe multitude were assembled to witness a reprraentattcm 
of nell and the infernal torments, in consequence of whiok 
accident many lives were lost; and a conflagration, that ia 
the following month destroyed more than seventeen b«n- 
dred houses, many of them sumptuous buildings. 0ee G. 
VUlani, Hist, lib. vUi. c. Ixx. and Ixxl. 

* Jia time.] " 1 shall feel all calamities more sensibly m I 
am farther advanced in life.* 

15-47 HELL, Canto XXVI 179 

Remounting scaled the flinty steps,^ mte 
We downward traced, and drew me up the steep 
Porsuing Jius our solitary way 
Among the crags and j^linters of the rock, 
Sped not our feet without the help of hands. 

Then sorrow seized me, which e*en now revives. 
As my thought turns again to what I saw. 
And, more &an I am wont," I rein and curb 
The powers of nature in me, lest they run 
Where Virtue guides not ; that, if aught of good 
My gentle ^ar or something better gave me, 
I envy not myself the precious boon. 

As in that season, when the sun least veijsi 
His face that lightens all, what time the fly 
Gives way to the shrill gnat, the peasant then, 
Upon some cliff reclined, beneath him sees 
Fire-flies innumerous spangling o'er the vale, 
Vineyard or tilth, where hw day-labor lies ; 
With flames so numberless throughout its sp9.ce 
Shone the eighth chasm, apparent, when the depth 
Was to my view exposed. As he, whose wrongs' • 
The bears avenged, at its departure saw 
Elijah's chariot, when the steeds erect [while, 

Raised their steep flight for heaven ; his eyes, mean« 
Straining pursued them, till the flame alone, 
Upsoaring like a misty speck, he kenn'd : 
E'en thus along the gulf moves every flame, 
A sinner so enfolded close in each. 
That none exhibits token of the theft. 

Upon the bridge I forward bent to look, 
And grasp'd a flmty mass, or else had fallen, 
Though push'd not from the height. The guide, who 
How I did gaze attentive, thus began : [mark'd 

1 The flinty st^s.] Ventnri, after Danielio and Volpi, ex- 
piains the word In tne original, *' borni,** to mean the stones 
that project from a wall, for other buildings to be joined to, 
whien the workmen call ** toothings.** 

* Jfyre tkan I am v>ont.] ** When I reflect on the pnnish- 
nent allotted to those who do not give sincere and upright 
advice to others, I am more anxious than ever not to abuse 
to so bad a purpose those talents, whatever they may be, 
which Mature, or rather Providence, has conferred on me.** 
It is probable that this declaration was the result of real 
feeling in the mind of Dante, whose political character would 
have given great weight to any opinion or party he had es- 
poused, and to whom indigence and exile might have offered 
stiong temptations to deviate from that line of conduct whici! 
a sttiet sense of duty prescribed. 

* Ji§ he whote wronfft.] Kings, b U. c. IL 


*< Within these ardors are the spirits, eaca 

Swathed in confining fire." — " Master ! thy word,' 

I answerM, " hath assured me ; yet I deem'd 

Already of the truth, already wish'd 

To ask thee who is in yon fire, that coniej 

So parted at the summit, as it seem'd 

Ascending from that funeral pile^ where lay 

The Theban brothers." He replied: « Within 

Ulysses there and Diomede endure 

Their penal tortures, thus to vengeance now 

Together hasting, as ere while to wrath. 

These m the flame with ceaseless groans deplorv 

The ambush of the horse,^ that open'd wide 

A portal for that goodly seed to pass. 

Which sow'd imperial Rome ; nor less the guile 

Lament they, whence, of her Achilles 'reft, 

Deldamia yet in death complains. 

And there is rued the stratagem that Troy 

Of her Palladium spoil'd." — " If they have power 

Of utterance from within these sparks," said I, 

** O, master ! think my prayer a thousand fold 

In repetition urged, that thou vouchsafe 

To pause till here the homed flame arrive 

See, how toward it with desire I bend." 

He thus : " Thy prayer is worthy of much praise 
And I accept it therefore ; but do thou 
Thy tongue refrain : to question them be mine ; 
For I divine thy wish ; and they perchance, [thee.'* 
For they were Greeks,' might shun discourse with 

When there the flame had come, where time and 
Seem*d fitting to my guide, he thus began: [plac« 

1 A$cendinff from thai funeral ptle.\ The flame is s«dd to 
have divided on the funeral pile whicn consumed the bodiei 
of Eteocles and Polynices, as if conscious of the enmity that 
actuated them whiie living. 

Ecce itemm fratris primos ut contigit artus 
Ignis edax, tremuere rogi, et novus advena busto 
Pellitur, exundant diviso \ertice flammc, 
Alternosque apices abrupt& luce coroscant. 

Stalitu, Tktibn lib. xU. 
Compare Lncan, Pharsal., lib. 1. 145. 

• 7%« ambuMh of the horse.] '* The ambush of the woodeB 
horse, that caused iEneas to quit the city of Troy and seek 
his fortune in Italy, where his descendants founded the Ro- 
man empire." 

* Far thejf teere Oreeks.] By this it is, perhaps, implied 
that they were haughty and arrogant. So, in our Poet*a 
twenty-fourth Bonnet, of which a translation is inserted la 
Ihe Life prefixed, he says, 

Ed ella mi risposc, :onie un Greco 

»-l]3. HELL, Canto XXVI 181 

'* O ye, who dwell two spirits in one fire ! 

If, living, I of yon did merit anght, 

Whate'er the measure were of that desert, 

When in the worid ray lofty strain I poured. 

Move ye not on, till one of yon nnfold 

In what clime death overtook him self-destroy'd* 

Of the old flame forthwith the greater horn 
Began to loU, murmuring, as a fire 
That labors with the wind, then to and fro 
Wagging the top, as a Umgne uttering sounds, 
Threw out its voice, and spake : " When I escaped 
From Circe, who beyond a circling year 
Had held me near Caieta' by her charms. 
Ere thus iBneas yet had named the shore ; 
Nor fondness for my son,' nor reverence 
Of my old father, nor return of love. 
That should have crown'd Penelope with joy, 
Could overcome in me the zeal I had 
To explore the world, and search the ways of lifci 
Man's evil and his virtue. Forth I sail'd 
Into the deep ^illimitable main. 
With but one bark, and the small faithful band 
That yet cleaved to me. As Iberia far. 
Far as Marocco, either shore I saw, 
And the Sardinian and each isle beside 
Which round that ocean bathes. Tardy with age 
Were I and my companions, when we came 
To the strait pass,' where Hercules ordainM 
The boundaries not to be o'eistepp'd by man. 
The walls of Seville to my right I left, 
On the other hand already Ceuta pass'd. 

* O brothers !' I began, * who to the west 

* Through perils without number now have reach'4 

* To this the short remaining watch, that yet 
' Our senses have to wake, refuse not proof 

1 Caieta.] Viivil, iEneid. lib. vii. 1. 
< JiTor fondness for my son.] Imitated by Tasno, 6. I*, C 
>iii. St. 7. 

Ne timer di &tlca b di peii^io, 

Ne vaghezza del regno, ne pietade 

Del vecchio genitar, si degno a&tto 

Intiepedir nel generoso petto. 

This Imagined voyage of Ulysses into the Atlantic b allQ 
!ied to by Pnlci : 

£ aopcatatto comniendava Ullsse, 
Che per vederneU' altro mondo gisse. 

Morf. Jlia£g^ c tx\ 
/Ind by Tbmm, G. L~ e. zv. 35. 
* The strmg pass.] The straits of Gibraltar 

182 THE VISION. il4-ia 

^ Of the unpeopled world, foUcwing the track. 

Of PhcebiuB. Call to mind from whence ye ^rang 
' Ye were not form'd to live the life of brotes. 

But virtue to pursue and knowledge high.' 
With these few words I sharpened for tl^ voyage 
The mind of my associates, that I then 
Could scarcely have withheld them. To the dawn 
Our poop we tum'd, and for the witless flight 
Made our oars wings,' still gaining on the le^t 
Each star of the other pole night now beheld,* 
And ours so low, that from the ocean floor 
It rose not. Five times re-illumed, as oft 
Vanish'd the light from underneath the moon, 
Since the deep way we enter'd, when from far 
Appeared a mountain dim," loftiest methought 
Of all I e'er beheld. Joy seized us straight ; 
But soon to mourning changed. From the new loiid 
A whirlwind sprung, and at her foremost side 
Did strike the vessel. Thrice^ it whirl'd her round 
With all the waves ; the fourth time lifted up 
The poop, and sank the prow : so fate decreed : 
And over us the booming billow closed."* 

1 J\iade our oars vnnga.] 

0Z6* ett/ipt* iperfidt rd re vrcpd vtfvei HXovrat. 

Htm. Od.y xi. JM 
So Chiabrera, Canz. Eroiche., xiii. 

Farb de* reml un volo. 

And Tasso, Ibid., 26. 

ffight now beheld.] Petrarch is here cited by Lombardi : 

Ne \k sn sopra il cerchio della Inna 

Vide mai tante stelle alcana notte. Canz. xxxvii. 1. 

Nor there above the circle of the moon 
Did ever night behold so many stars. 

3 ji moujUain dim.] The mountain of Purgatory. — Amor^ 
the various opinions of theologians respecting the sitnatic:! 
of the terrestrial paradise, Pietro Lombardo relates, that '* it 
w^as separated by a long space, either of sea or land froin tfr 
regions inhabited by men, and placed in the ocean reaching 
us far as to the lunar circle, so that the waters of the deluge 
d'd not reach it" Sent., Ub. ii. dist. 17. Thus Lombardi. 

* Tkrice.] 

Ast ilium ter iluetus ibidem 

Torquet agens circum, et rapidus vorat cquore vortex. 

rirg. ^«., lib. t V'k 

* doted.] Venturi refers to Pliny and Soliniu for tlie 
tplttion that Ulysses was the founder of Lisbon, from whence 
ae thinks It was easy for the fancy of a poet to send him on 
^et ftirther enterprises. Perhaps the story (which it to not 
unlikely that our author will be found to have boirnwed 
ft^m some legend of the middle ages^ may have taken it'4 

.-fll HELL, Canto XXVIL 188 



riM Poet, traattDK of the same pnnishment as in the las; 
Canto, relates tluit he tamed towards a flame in which Wbf 
the Count Guide da Montefeltro, whose inquiries respecting 
the state of Romagna he answers ; and Gnido is thereby 
induced to declaxv who he is, and why condemned to that 

Now upward rose. the flame, and stili'd its light 
To speak no more, and now pass'd on with leave 
From the mild poet gain'd ; when following came 
Another, from whose top a soaud confused. 
Forth issuing, drew our eyes that way to look. 

As the Sicilian bull,' that rightfully 
His cries first echoed who had shaped its mould. 
Did so rebellow, with the voice of him 
Tormented, that the brazen monster seem'd 
Pierced through with pain ; thus, while no way they 
Nor avenue immediate through the flame, [f'^mnd, 
Into its language tum'd the dismal words : 
But soon as they had won their passage forth. 
Up from the point, which vibrating obey'd 
Their motion at the tongue, these sounds were heard : 
'* O thou ! to whom I now direct my voice. 
That lately didst exclaim in Lombard phrase 
* Depart thou ; I solicit thee no more ;' 
Though somewhat tardy I perchance arrive, 
Let it not irk thee here to pause awhile, 
And with me parley : lo ! it irks not me. 
And yet I bum. If but e'en now thou fall 
Into this blind world, from that pleasant land 
Of Latium, whence I draw my sum of guilt. 
Tell me if those who in Romagna dwell 
Have peace or war. For of the mountains thcr&- 
Was I, betwixt Urbino and the height 
Whence Tiber first unlocks his mighty flood." 

Leaning I listen'd, yet with heedful ear. 
When, as he touch'd my side, the leader thus : 
** Speak thou : he is a Latian." My reply 

rise partly from the obscure oracle returned by the ghost oi 
Tireslas to Ulysses, (see the eleventh book of the Odyssey,) 
and pertly from the fate which there was reason to suppose 
had befallen some adventurous explorers of the Atiantie 

1 T%e Sicilian bull.] The engine of torture invented b^ 
rerillus, for the tyrant Phalaris. 

% Of th« mountains 1^re.[ Montefeltro 

184 THE VISION. a»-4i 

Waa ready, and I spake without delay : 
** O spirit ! who art hidden here below, 
Never was thy Romagna without war 
In her proud tyrants* bosoms, nor is now : 
But open war there left I none. The state, 
Ravenna hath maintained this many a year. 
Is steadfast There Polenta's eagle' broods ; 
And in his broad circumference of plume 
Overshadows Cervia. The green talons grasp 
The land," that stood erewhUe the proof so long, 

> Potenta^s eagle.} Gnido Novello da Polenta, who ^re aii 
eagle for his coat of arms. The name of Polenta was de 
rived from a castle 00 called, in the neighborhood of Brit. 
tonoro. Cervia is a small maritime city, about fifteen milei 
to the south of Ravenna. Guide was the son of Ostasio da 
Polenta, and made himself master of Ravenna in 1365. In 
1322 he was deprived of his sovereignty, and died at Bologna 
in the year following. This last and most munificent patrun 
of Dante is himself enumerated, by the historian of Italian 
literature, among the poets of his time.' Tiraboschi, Storia 
della Lett. Ital., torn. v. lib. liU c. 11. sect. 13. The passai^e in 
the text might have removed the uncertainty which Tira 
boschi expressed, respecting the duration of Guido*s absence 
from Ravenna, when he was driven from that city in 1295, by 
the arms of Pietro, archbishop of Monreale. It must evidently 
have been very short, since his government is here repre 
sented (in 1300) as not having sunered any material disturb 
ance for many years. 

In the ProSmium to the Annotations on the Decameron uf 
Boccaccio, written by those who were deputed to that work, 
Ediz. Giunti, 1573, it is said of Guide Novello, *' del quale si 
leggono ancora alcune composizioni, per poche che elle sieno, 
secondo qnella et&, belle e leggiadre :" and in the collection 
edited by Allacci at Naples, 1661, p. 382, is a sonnet of hi». 
which breathes a high.and pure sinrit of Platonism. 

Among the MSS. of the Iliad in the Ambrosian library at 
Milan, described by Mai, there is one that was in the posses* 
sion of Guide. Jliadi* FhtgmeiUOf ^e^ fol. Medial.^ 1819 
Prooemium, p. xlviii. It was, perhaps, seen by Dante. 

To this accoimt 1 must now subjoin that which has since 
been given, but without any reference to authorides, by 
Troya : ** In the course of eight years, from 1310 to ISlt^ 
Gnido III. of Polenta, father of Francesca, togetler with his 
sons Bernardino and Ostasio, had died. A third son, named 
Bannino, was fkther of Gnido IV. Of these two it is not 
known whether they held the lordship of Ravenna. But it 
came to the sons or Ostasio, Gnido V., called Novello, and 
Rinaldo, the archbishop: on the sons of Bernardino devolved 
the sovereignty of the neighboring city of Cervia " 

VdtTo Mlegarico ii Dtmte^ ed. 1896, p. 17a 

> TkB Und.\ The territory of Forli, the inhabitanU of 
which, in 1382. were enabled, by the stratagem of Gnido da 
Montefeltro, who then governed it, to defeat with greal 
(slaughter the French army by which it had been beid^^ 
iee G. Villani, lib. vii. c. 81. The Feet Infonns GaMo, Hs 
brmer ruler, that it is now in the possession of Sinibaldr 

O^. HELL/CANro XXVII. ]85 

And piled in bloody heap the host of France. 

*' The old mastiff of Verruchio and the youiigj* 
That tore Montagna' in their wrath, still make. 
Where they are wont, an augre of their fangs. 

<* Lamone's city, and Santemo's,' range 
Under the lion of the snowy lair,^ 
Inconstant partisan, that changeth sides. 
Or ever sommer yields to winter's frost 
And she, whose flank is wash'd of Savio's wave,* 
As 'twixt the level and the steep she lies, 
Lires so 'twixt tyrant power and liberty. 

" Now tell us, I entreat thee, who art thou : 
Be not more hard than others. In the world, 
So may thy name still rear its forehead high." 

Then roar'd awhile the Are, its sharpened point 
On either side waved, and thus breathed at last : 
" If I did think my answer were to one 
Who ever could return unto the world, 
This flam6 should rest unshaken. But sIncA ne'er 
If true be told me, any from this depth 
Has found his upward way, I answer thee, 
Nor fear lest infamy record the words. 

« A man of arms' at first, I clothed me tlien 
In good Saint Francis' girdle, hoping so 
To have made amends. And certainly my hope 
Had fail'd not, but that he, whom curses light on, 
The high priest J again seduced me into sin. 

Ordolaffi, or Ardelaffi, whom he designates by his coat of 
anns, a lion vert. 

1 TTke old mastiff of Verruehio and the youn^.J Malatesta, 
and Malatestino his son, lords of Rimini, calied, from theii 
ferocity, the mastif& of Verruchio, which was the name of 
their castle. Malatestino was, perhaps, the husband of Fran- 
cesca, daughter of Guido da Polenta. See Notes to Canto 
V. 313. 

* Montagna.) Montagna de* Parcitati, a noble knight, and 
leader of the Ghibelline party at Rimini, murdered by Mala- 

> Lamone^a city and Santemo^s.l Jiamone is the river at 
Faenza, and Santemo at Imola. 

* 7%« lion of the OTunoy lair.] Machlnardo Pagano, whose 
arms were a lion azure on a field argent ; mentioned again in 
the Purgatory, Canto xiv. 1S2. See 6. Villani passim, where 
he is called Machlnardo da Suslnana. 

B Jfhooejlank i» voasKd of Saviors wave.] Cesena, situated 
M the foot of a mountain, and washed by the nver Savio^ 
Ihat often descends with a swollen and rapid stream from thf 

* A man of arms.] Guido da Montefeltro. 

^ Tie high prieat.} Boniface VIII. 

186 THE VISION. m^\ 

4nd liow» and wherefore, listen while I tell. 
Long as this spirit moved the bones and pul|» 
My mother ^ve me, less my deeds bespake 
The nature of the lion than the fox.^ 
All ways of winding subtlety I knew, 
And with such art conducted, that the sound 
Reached the world's limit. Soon as to that pait 
Of life I foimd me come, when each behooves 
To lower sails' and gather in the lines ; 
That, which befoire had pleased me, then I rueda 
And to repentance and confession tum*d, 
Wretch that I was ; and well it had bestead .rwt. 
The chief of the new Pharisees' meantime, 

- ■ ■- Mi I ^^^^^■ ■ I filial. ii ■^■■■. ii.^i piMaiMn m m^^^ 

I The ntOure of Uu lien than the fox,] 

Non taia'. leonhie ma di volpe. 

So Palci, Morg. Me^., c. xix. : — 

E faroa le sue opro e le 8ue colpe 
Non creder leonine ma dl volpe. 

Fraus quasi vulpecnlce, vis leonls vldetnr. Cicero de CfficiiM 
lib. i. c 13. 

* 7b lower oailo.] Our Poet had the same train of thoagh 
as when he wrote that most beautiful passage in his Coovito, 
beginning " £ qui 6 da sapere, che siccome dice Tnllio in 
kiuello di Senettute, la natnrale morte," &c., p. 909. ** As it 
hath been said by CloerOt in his treatise on old age, natural 
Jeath is lilce a port and haven to us after a long voyage ; and 
even as the good mariner, when he draws near the port, 
lowers his saus, and enters it softly with a weak and inof 
fensive motion, so ought we to lower the sails of our worldly 
rtpeiaUons, and to return to God with all our understanding 
and heart, to the end that we may reach this haven with all 
quietness and with all peace. And herein we are mightily 
instructed by nature in a lesson of mildness ; for in such a 
death itself there is neither pain nor bitterness ; but, as ripe 
fruit is lightly and without violence loosened from its branch, 
Ro our soul without grieving, departs iirom the body in which 
it hath been." 

So mayst thou live, till like ripe firuit thou drop 
Into thy mother's lap, or be with ease 
Gathered, not harshly pluck*d, for death mature. 

Milton, P. Z.., b. xi. 537. 

* Tlte chief of the new Pharieees.] Boniface VIIT., whose 
enmity to the fkniily of Colonna, prompted him to destroy 
their houses near the Lateran. Wishing to obtain possession 
of their other seat, Penestrino, he consulted with Guide da 
Montefeltro how he might accomplish his purpose, o^rinc 
niui at the same time absolution for his past sins, as well 
as for that which he was then tempting him to commit. 
Grnldo*s advice was, that kind words and fair promises would 
pAit his enemies into his power ; and they accordinidy soon 
nfterivards fell mto the snare laid for them, A. D. JSOo. Sec 
G. Villanl, lib. vUl. c. 83. 

There is a relation similar to this in the history of Fefreto 
Vlncentlno, lib. 11. anno 1S94; and the writer adds, that out 
.*Kt had Justly ctmdemned Goido to the tonueats he has 

a»-06. HELL, Cjumto XX VU. 187 

Wagriog his warfaiie near the Lateran, 

Not with the Saracens or Jews, (his foes 

All Christians were, nor against Acre one 

Had fought,^ nor trafficked in the Soldan's land) 

He, his great charge nor sacred ministry, 

In himself reverenced, nor in me that cord 

Which used to mark with leanness whom it girded 

As in Soracte, Constantino besought,' 

To cure his leprosy, Sylvester's aid ; 

So me, to cure the fever of his pride, 

This man besought : my counsel to that end 

He ask'd ; and I iras silent ; for his words 

Seem'd drunken : but forthwith he thus resumed : 

' From thy heart banish fear : of all offence 

* I hitherto absolve thee. In return, 

^ Teach me my purpose so to execute, 

' That Penestrino cumber earth no more. 

allotted him. See Maratori, Script. Ital., torn. ix. p. 970^ 
where the editor observes: ^'Probosl hujas faclnoris narra* 
tioni fidem adjangere nemoprobuB velit, quod facile confinxer- 
int Bonifacil emuli," &c. And indeed it woald seem as if 
Dante himself had either not heard, or had not believed, the 
leport of Guidons having sold himself thus foolishly to the 
Pope, when he wrote the passage in the Convito cited in the 
nbte to V. 76 ; for he soon after speaks of him as one of those 
noble spirits *' who, when they approached the last haven^ 
lowered the sails of their worldly operations, and gave them- 
selves up to reli^on in their old age, laying aside every world- 
ly delight and wish." 

* ■- JVbr wtUiut Acre one 
Had fought.] He alludes to the renegade Christians, by 
whom the Saracens, in April, 1291, were assisted to recover 
6t John d*Acre, the last possession of the Christians in the 
Holy Land. The r^pret expressed by the Florentine annalist, 
&. YiUani, for the loss of this valuable fortress, is well worthy 
of ob8ers*a.ti in, lib. vii. c. 144. ** From this event Christendom 
enflered the greatest detriment : for by the loss of Aero thore 
DO longer remained in the Holy Land any footing for the 
Christians; and all our good maritime places of trade never 
ftftorwards derived half U^e advantage from their merchan- 
dise and manufactures ; so favorable was the situation of Iht* 
city of Acre, in the very front of our sea, in the middle of 
Ssrria, and as it were in the middle of the inhabited world, 
seventy miles from Jerusalem^ both source and receptacle of 
every kind of merchandise, as well flrom the east as fkom the 
west; the resort of all perale from all countries, and of the 
eastern nations of every dinerent tongue ; so that it might be 
considered as the aliment of the world." 

> A» in SoraUe, Constantine beaought.] So in Dante's trea- 
Use De Monarchic: "Dicunt qnidam adhuc, quod Constan- 
Linns Imperator, mundatus a lepr& intercessione Sylvestri, 
bmc summi pontifids, imperii sedem, scilicet Roroam, donavi< 
ecclesla^ cum multls aliis imperii dignitatibus." Lib. ill. Com- 
nnre Fazio degli Uberti, Dittamondo, lib. ii. cap. xii. 

188 THE VISION. »i^i;«i 

Heaveu, a6 th>u knowest, I have power tofeiiut 
' And open : and the keys are therefore twain i 

* The which my predecessor* meanly prized.' 

** Then, yielding to the forcefal ai^funionts, 
Of silence aa more perilous I deem'd, 
And answerd : * Father 1 since thou washest mn 

* Clear of that guilt wherein I now must fall, 

< Large promise with performance scant, be sure, 

* Shall make thee triumph in thy lofty seat* 

" When I was numbe?d with the dead, then can it: 
Samt Francis for me ; but a cherub dark 
He met, who cried : * Wrong me not ; he is mine. 

* And must below to join the wretched crew, 

* For the deceitful counsel which he gave. 

' E'er since I watch'd him, hovering at his hair 

< No power can the impenitent absolve ; 

< Nor to repent, and wUl, at once consist, 

< By contradiction absolute forbid.' 

Oh misery ! how I shook myself, when he 

Seized me, and cried, * Thou haply thought'st me noi 

< A disputant in logic so exact !' 

To Minos down he bore me ; and the judge 
Twined eight times round his callous back the tail. 
Which biting with excess of rage, he snake : 

< This is a guilty soul, that in the fire 

* Must vanish.' Hence, perdition-doom'd, I rove 
A prey to rankling soirow, in this garb." 

When he had thus fulfiU'd his words, the flame 
In dolor parted, beating to and fro. 
And writhing its sharp horn. We onward went* 
I and my leader, up along the rock. 
Far as another arch, that overhangs 
The fofls, wherein the penalty is paid 
Of those who load them with committed sin. 


They arrive in the ninth golf, where the sowers of scandal, 
ichismatics, and heretics, are seen with their limbs raisem 
bly maimed or divided in diflbrent wavs. Among these tlie 
Poet finds Mahomet, Flero da Hedidnl, Cnrio, Mosca, and 
Beitrand de Bom. 

Who, e'en in words unfetter'd, might at full 
Tell of the wounds and blood that now I saw, 
Though he repeated oft the tale ? No tongue 

> My predtees$or.\ Celestine V. Bee Notes to Cant* lil 

4-17. HELL, Canto XiVlU. 189 

So vert a theme could equal, speech and thought 
Both impotent alike. If in one band 
Collected, stood the people all, who e'er 
Pour*d on Apulia's happy soil^ their blood. 
Slain by the Trojans,* and in that long war,' 
When of the ringd* the measured booty made 
A pile BO high, as Rome's historian writes 
Who errs not ; with the multHude, that felt 
The griding force of Guiscard's Norman steel,* 
And those the rest,* whose bones are gathered yet 
At Ceperano, there where treachery 
Branded the Apulian name, or where beyond 
Thy walls, O Tagliacozzo,^ without arms 
The old Alardo conquer'd ; and his limbs 

1 Happy aoU.I There is a streDge discordance here among 
the expounders. ** Fortnnata terra." Because of the vicis- 
sitndes of fortune which It experienced : Landhio. Form- 
Bate, with respect to those who conquered in it : Vellutella 
Or on account of its natural fertility : Ventnri. The context 
requires that we should understand, by ** fortunata,'* *' ca- 
lamitous," *' disgraziata,*' to which sense the word Is extended 
In the Vocabulary of Ia Cmsca : Lombardl. Volpi is silent 

On this note the late Archdeacon Fisher favored me with 
the following remark : " Volpi Is, indeed, silent at the pas- 
sage ; but in the article * Puglia,* in his second Index, he 
writes, Dante la chiama fortunata, clod p&ngue e feconda. 
This is your own translation ; and is the same woid in mean- 
ing with cMoiftwy and felix, in Xenophon's Anabasis and 
Horace passim.** 

s Tlu Trtjan*.} Some MSS. have ** Romani ;'* and Lom- 
bardl has admitted it into the text. Venturi had, indeed, be- 
fore met with the same reading in some edition, but he has 
not told us in which. 

s /» that long war.] The war of Hannibal in Italy. ** When 
llago brought news of his victories to Carthage, in order to 
make his successes more easily credited, he commanded the 
golden rings to be poured out in the senate-house, which 
iiade so large a heap, that, as some relate, they filled three* 
nctdii and a half. A more probable account represents them 
i>ot to have exceeded one modt'iw.** Livy, Hist,, lib. xxiil. IS. 

< The ringg.] So Frezzi : 

Non quella, che riempid 1 moggi d*anella. 

M ^uadrir^ lib. 11. cap. 0. 

* Chti$carf» Gorman aietl.l Robert Gniscard, who eon 
altered the kingdom of Naples, and died in 1110. 6. Villanl, 
ub. iv. cap. 16. He is introduced in the Paradise, Canto xviii. 

* And Uf*e the re«e.] The army of Manfiredi, which, through 
fhe treachery of the Apulian troops, was overcome by Charles 
pf Anjou in 1965, and fell in such numbers, that the bones ot 
the slain were still gathered near Ceperano. G. ViUani, lib. 
A\. cap. 9. See the Purgatory, Canto iti. 

f O T\igli(uot%o.'\ He alludes to the victory which Charleti 
taioed over Con^ino, by the sage advice of the Sleur de 
Valeri. in 1368. G. Villanl, lib. vii. c. 27. 

190 THE VISION. 18^ 

One wer« to show transpierced, auolhei nk 
Clean lopp'd away ; a spectacle like this 
Were but a thing of naught, to the hideous aigfat 
Of the ninth chasm. A rundiet, that hath lost 
Its middle or side stave, gapes not so wide 
As one I mark'd, torn frc»n the chin throu^^ui 
Down to the hinder passage : 'twixt the legs 
Dangling his entrails hung, the midriff lay 
Open to view, and wretched ventricle, 
That turns the englutted aliment to dross. 

While eagerly I fix on him my gaze. 
He eyed me, with his hands laid ]m breast bare. 
And cried, " Now mark how I do rip me: lo ! 
How is Mahomet mangled : before me 
Walks Ali^ weeping, from the chin his face 
Cleft to the forelock ; and the others all, 
Whom here thou seest, while they lived, did sow 
Scandal and schism, and therefore thus are rent. 
A fiend is here behind, who with his sword 
Hacks us thus cruelly, slivering again 
Each of this ream, when we have compass'd round 
The dismal way ; for first our gashes close 
Ere we repass before him. But, say who 
Art thou, that standest musing on the rock, 
Haply so lingering to delay the pain 
Sentenced upon thy crimes." — " Hun death n'>t yet/ 
My guide rejom'd, " hath overtaken, nor sin 
Conducts to torment ; but, that he may ma^^e 
Full trial of your state, I who am dead 
Must through the depths of hell, from orb to orb. 
Conduct him. Trust my words ; for they are true." 

More than a hundred spurits, when that they heard, 
Stood in the foss to mark me, through amaze 
Forgetful of their pangs. " Thou, who perchance 
Shalt shortly view the sun, this warrung thou 
Bear to Dolcmo :' bid him, if he wish not 

1 Ali.] The disciple of Mahomet. 

t Doieino.] " In 1305, a friar, called Dolclno, wLo belonge4 
to no regular order, contrived to raise in Novara, In hoot- 
baidy, a large company of the meaner sort )f peof^e, deda- 
ring himself to be a tme apostle of Christt and proiniilgatfag 
a community of property and of wives, with many other 
such heretical doctrines. He blamed the pope, cairainals, 
and other nrelatss of the holy church, for not observing theii 
laty, nor leading the angelic life, and affirmed that he ought 
o be pope. He was followed by more tlian three thousand 
:iien and women, who lived promiscnoosly on the monntalna 
together, like beasts, and, when they wanted jptovtslons, 
fuppUed themselves bv depradation and mplne. This lasted 

M-7S. HELL, Canto XXVHL 191 

Here boou to follow me, that with good store 

Of food he arm him, lest imprisoning snows 

Yield him a yictim to Noyara's power ; 

No easy ccnqnest else :" with foot upraised 

For stepping, spake Mahomet, on the ground 

Then fiz'd it to depart. Another shade, 

Pierced in the throat, his nostrils mutilate 

E'en from beneath the eyebrows, and one ear 

Lopp'd off, who, with the rest, through wonder stood 

Gazing, before the rest advanced, and bared 

His wind-pipe, that without was all o'ersmear'd 

With crimson stain. '< O thou !" said he, « whom sui 

Condemns not, and whom eist (unless too near 

Resemblance do deceive me) I aloft 

Have seen on Latian ground, call thou to mind 

Piero of Medicina,^ if again 

Returning, thou behold'st the pleasant land' 

That from Vercelli slopes to Mercab6 ; 

And there instruct the twain,' whom Fano boasts 

Her worthiest sons, Guide and Angelo, 

That if 'tis given us here to scan aright 

The future, they out of life's tenement* 

for two years, till many being struck with companction at 
the dissolute life they led, his sect was much diminished ; 
and, through failure of food and the severity of the snows, 
he was taken by the people of Novara, and burnt, with Mar* 
garita, his compimion, and many other men aind women 
whom his errors had seduced.** O. Villant, lib. viii. c. 84. 

Landino observes, that he was possessed of singular elo- 
quence, and that both he and Majrgarita endured their fiits 
with a firmness worthy of a l)etter cause. For a further ac- 
count of him, see Muratori, Rer. Ital. Script., torn. ix. p. 427. 

Fazio degll Uberti, speaking of the polygamy allowed by 
Mahomet, adds : 

E qui con fra Doicin par che s*intenda. 

Dittamondot lib. v. cap. zii. 

I Medieina,} A place in the territory of Bologna. Piero 
fnruented dissensions among the inhabitants of that city, and 
auM>ng the leaders of the neighboring states. 

* l%e ploasant land.] Lombardy. 

* Tks twain.] Guido del Cassero and Anglolello da Car 
gnano, Vr o of the worthiest and most distinguished dtixans 
•if Fano, were invited by Malatestino da Rimini to an enter* 
talnment, on pretence that he had some important buriness 
to transact with them ; and, according to instructions given 
by him, they were drowned in their passage near Cattolica, 
between Rimini and Fano. 

* Omt of lifers tenement,] **Fuor di lor vasello,** is con- 
strued by the old Latin annotator on the Monte Cassmo MS. 
and by Lombard!, "out of the ship.'* Volpl understands 
' vasello" to mean " their city or country." Others take thn 
<4Mnl In the sense according to which, though not wlthott 
jiiUie donbL it is rendered in this translation. 

198 THE VISION. 7ft-l« 

Shall be cast forth, and whehn'd under the waYO? 

Near to Cattolica» through perfidy 

Of a fell tyrant 'Twixt the Cyprian isle 

And Balearic, ne'er hath Neptune seen 

An injury so foul, by pirates done, 

Or Argive crew of old. That one-eyed traitor 

(Whose realm, there is a spirit here were fain 

His eye had still lack*d sight of) them shall brin|f 

To conference with him, then so shape his end. 

That they shall need not 'gainst Focara's wind* 

Offer up vow nor prayer." I answering thu3 : 

** Declare, as thou dost wish that I above 

May carry tidings of thee, who is he, [brance.' 

In whom that sight dcth wake such sad remera- 

Forthwith he laid his hand on the cheek-bone 
Of one, his fellow-spirit, and his jaws 
Expanding, cried: " I/O ! this is he I wot of: 
He speaks not for himself: the outcast this. 
Who overwhelm'd the doubt in Cesar's mind,' 
Affirming that delay to men prepared 
Was ever harmful." Oh ! how terrified 
Methought was Curio, from whose throat was cut 
The tongue, which spake that hardy word. Then one« 
Maim'd of each hand, uplifted in the gloom 
The bleeding stumps, that they with gory spots 
Sullied his face, and cried: " Remember thee 
Of Mosca* too ; I who, alas ! exclaim'd, 

> Fbcara^s wind.] Focara is a mountain, fh)m which a 
wind biows that \s peculiarly dangerotis to the navigators of 
that coast. 

3 TA« doubt in Casar^a irttiuf.1 Cnrio, whose speech (ac- 
cording to Lncan) determined Jmins Cssar to proceed when 
he hM arrived at Rimini, (the ancient Ariminom,) and 
loubted whether he should prosecute the civil war. 

Tolle moras : semper nocuit differre paratis. 

Pkaraal., 1. 1. iMl. 

Haste then thy towering eneles on their way ; 
When fair occasion calls, 'us fotal to delay. /2mp«. 

* JUotcaA Buondelmonte was engaged to marry a lady of 
the Amidei family, but broke his prom&e,and united hlntielf 
to one of the Donati. Tliis was so much resented by the 
tljrmer, that a lueetlng of themselves and their Unamen was 
held, to consider of the best means of revenging the insult 
Blosca degll Uberti, or de' Lamberti, persuaded them to re- 
solve on the assassination of Buondelmonte, exclaiming to 
them, ** the thing onee done, there is an end." The eoonsel 
\nd its effects were the source of many terrible calamitiat to 
the stHto of Florence. ** This murder,*' says 6. YUlanl, lib. v. 
cap. 38, "was the cause and beginning of ths aecnned 
Oael|A and Ghilielline parties in Florence.** It happened io 
1915. See the Paradise, Canto xvi. 139. 

103-130. HELL, Canto XXVlII. 193 

' The deed once done, there is an end/ that provnd 
A seed of sorrow to the Tuscan race." 
I added : " Ay, and death to thme own tribn " 
Whence, heaping wo on wo, he hurried off, 
As one grief-stong to madness. But I there 
Still lingered to behold the troop, and saw 
Thing, snch as I may fear without more proof 
To tell of, but that conscience makes me firm, 
The boon companion,' who her strong breast-plate 
Buckles on him, that feels no guilt wHhin, 
And bids him on and fear not Without doult 
[ saw, and yet it seems to pass before me, 
A headless trunk, that even as the rest 
Of the sad flock paced onward. By the hair 
It bore the severed member, lantern-wise 
Pendent in baud, which look'd at us, and said, 
" Wo *s me I" The spuit lighted thus himself ; 
And two there were in one, and one in two. 
How that may be, he knows who ordereth so. 

When at the bridge's foot direct he stood, 
His arm aloft he resur'd, thrusting the head 
Full in our view, that nearer we might hear 
The words, which thus it utter'd : " Now behold 
This grievous torment, thou, who breathing go's! 
To spy the dead : behold, if any else 
Be terrible as this. And, that on earth 
Thou mayst bear tidings of me, know that I 
Am Bertrand,' he of Born, who gave king John 

> 7%« boon eompanion.\ 

What stronger breastplate than a heart untainted ? 
Skakspeare, 2 Htn, VI^ act iii. sc. S. 

3 Bertraiid.l Bertrand de Born, Vicomte de Haatefort, ne^j 
Perigaenx in Gnienne, who incited John to rebel against hia 
tather, Henry 11. of England. Bertrand holds a distingaished 
place among the Provencal poets. He is quoted in Dante, de 
Vnlg. JSlTq., lib. il. cap. 3, where it is said, " that he treated 
of war, virhieh no Italian poet had yet done.** " Anna vero 
nalliini Italani adhnc poetasse invenio.** The triple division 
of svtgeets for poetry, made in this chapter of the de Vnlg. 
Ekiq., is very remarkable. It will be found in a note on Par- 
■alaiy, CSanto zxvi. 113. For the translation of some extracts 
nan Bertrand de Bora*s poems, see Millot. Hist Litt^raire 
des Troabadours, torn. i. p. 210 ; but the historical parts of 
that woric are, I believe, not to be relied on. Bertrand had a 
son of the samo name, who wrote a poem against John, king 
of England. It is that species of composition called the ser- 
ventese ; and is in the Vatican, a MS. in Cod. 3204. See Ba- 
tftero. La Crasca Provenzale. Roma, 1734, p. 80. For many 
partiealan respecting both Bertrands, consult Raynocard*9 
PoMes des Troubadours ; in which excellent work, and in 
his Lexiqne Roman, Paris. 1838, several of their poems, In the 
^?oven9al language may be seen 


194 THE VISION 181-lSk 

Hie coiiuflcl miflchievous. Father and mki 
I set at mutual war. For Absalom 
And David more did not Ahitophel, 
Spurring them on maliciously to strife. 
For parting those so closely knit, my brain 
Parted, alas ! I carry from its source, 
That in this trunk inhabits. Thus the law 
Of retribution fiercely works in me.*' 

m^^^^f*^*^*^** «* k«M«^«M^ ■ M 



Dante, at the desire of Virgil, iM'oceeds onward to the hMffi. 
that crosses the tenth galf, irom whence he hears the cries 
of the alchemists and forgers, who are tormented therein ; 
but not being able to discern any thing on account of the 
darkness, they descen'd the rock, that bounds this the last 
of the compartments in which the eighth circle is divided, 
and then behold the spirits who are afflicted by divers 
plagues and diseases. Two of them, namely, Grifolino of 
Arezzo and Capocchio of Sienna, are introduced speaking. 

So were mine eyes inebriate with the view 
Of the vast multitude, whom various wounds 
Disfigured, that they long'd to stay and weep. 

But Virgil roused me : " What yet gazest on '' • 
Wherefore doth fasten yet thy sight below 
Among the maim*d and miserable shades 7 
Thou hast not shown in any chasm beside 
This weakness. Know, if thou wouldst number theiu, 
That two and twenty miles the valley winds 
Its circuit, and already is the moon 
Ben&ith our feet : the time permitted now 
Is short ; and more, not seen, remains to see." 

'' If thou," I straight replied, " hadst weigh'd tin 
For which I look'd, thou hadst perchance excused 
The tarrying still." My leader part pursued 
His way, the while I follow'd, answering him, 
And adding thus : " Within that cave I deem, 
Whereon so fixedly I held my ken. 
There is a spirit dwells, one of my blood, 
Wailing the crime that costs him now so dear.** 

Then spake my master : " Let thy soul no raatK 
.\fAict itself for him. Direct elsewhere 
Its thought, and leave him. At the bridge*s foot 


U-45. HELL, Canto XXIX. 195 

I mark'd ho^ he did point with menacing look 
At thee, and heard him hy the others named 
Geri of Bello.* Thou so wholly then 
Wert busied with his spirit, who once ruled 
The towers of Hautefort, that thou lookedst not 
That way, ere he was gone." — ^' O guide beloved 
His violent death yet unavenged," said I, 

By any, who are partners in his shame, 
Made him contemptuous ; therefore, as I think, 
He pass'd me speechless by ; and, doing so. 
Hath made me more compassionate his fate." 

So we discoursed to where the rock first show'd 
The other valley, had more light beeit there, 
E'en to the lowest depth. Soon as we came 
O'er the last cloister in the dismal rounds 
Of Malebolge, and the brotherhood 
Were to our view exposed, then many a dart 
Of sore lament assail'd me, headed all 
With points of tlirilling pity, that I closed 
Both ears against the volley with mine hands. 

As were the torment,' if each lazar-house 
Of Valdichiana,* in the sultry time 

1 Oeri of Bello.] A kinsman of the Poet's, who was mar' 
tiered by one of the Sacchettl family. His being placed here, 
may be considered as a proof that Dante was more impartial 
in the allotment of his punishments than has generally been 
supposed. He was the son of Bello, who was brother to Bel- 
lincione, our Poet*s grandfather. Pelli, Mem. per la Vita di 
Dante. Opere di Dante. Zatta ediz., tom. iv. part li. p. 23. 

> ^» were the torment.] It is very probable that these lines 
gave Milton the idea of his celebrated description : 

Immediately a place 
Before their eyes appeared, sad, noisome, dark 
A lazar-house it seem*d, wherein were laid 
Numbers of all diseased, all maladies, &c. 

P, Z.., b. xi. 477. 

Yet the enumeration ut diseases, which foIlo^vs, appears to 
feave been taken by Milton from the Qnadriregii : 

duivi exan zoppi, monchi, sordi, e orbi, 
Quivi era il mal podagrico e di fianco, 
Quivi la iVenesia cogli occhi torbi. 

Qnivi 11 dolOT gridante, e non mal stanco, 
Qnivi il catarro con la gran cianfarda, 
L*asma, la polmonia quivi eran* anco 

L*ldropisia qnivi era grave e tarda, 
Di tntte febbri quel piano en pieno, 
Qnivi quel mal, che par che la came arda. 

Lib. ii. cap. a 

t Of Fhldiekiana.] The valley through which passes tlie 
rtver Chiana, bounded by Arezzo, Cortona, Montepttlclano, 
indChiori. In the heat ofautumn it was formerly rendered 
unwholesome by the stagnation of the water, but has sinu' 

£90 THE VISION. 40>«i 

Twixt July aud September, with the isle 
Sardinia and Maremma's pestilent fen,^ 
Had heap'd their maladies all in one foss 
Together ; such was here the torment : dire 
The stench, as issuing streams from fester'd luuti& 

We on the utmost shore of the long rock 
Descended still to leftward. Then my sight 
Was livelier to explore the depth, wherein 
The minister of the most mighty Lord, 
All-searching Justice, dooms to punishment 
The forgers noted on her dread record. 

More rueful was it not methinks to see 
The nation in iEgina^ droop, what time 
^ach living thing, e'en to the little worm, 
All fell, so full of malice was the air, 
(Aud afterward, as bards of yore have told, 
The ancient people were restored anew 
From seed of emmets) than was here to see 
The spirits, that languished through the murky valc« 
Up-piied on many a stack. CooJ^ed they lay. 
One o'er the belly, o'er the shoulders one 
Roird of another ; sideling crawl'd a third 
Along the dismal pathway. Step by step 
We joumey'd on, in silence looking round, 
And listening those diseased, who strove in vain 
To lift their forms. Then two I mark'd, that sa* 
Propped 'gainst each other, as two brazen pans 
Set to retain the heat. From head to foot, ' * 

A tetter bark'd them round. Nor saw I e'er 
Groom currying so fast, for whom his lord 
Impatient waited, or himself perchance 
Tired with long watching, as of these each one 
Plied quickly Ms keen nails, through f uriousneas 
Of ne'er abated pruriency. The crust 
Came drawn from underneath in flakes, like scales 
Scraped from the bream, or fish of broader mail 

" O thou ! who with thy fingers rendest off 
Thy coat of proof," thus spake my guide to one, 
" Ajid sometimes makest tearing pincers of them. 
Tell me if any born of Latian land 
Be among these within : so may thy nails 

l)een drained by the Emperor Leopold II. The Chlana le 
raentioned as a remarkably slugzish stream, In the Paradise^ 
Uanto ziU. 31. 

^ MaremvMCt pegtUent fen.\ See Note to Canto xxv. v. 1& 

* /n •as;^**^.] He all«des to the fable of the ants changed 
iuto Myimidons Ovid, Mgt , lib. vU. 

K7 31 HELL, Canto XXIX. 197 

Serve thee for everlasting to this toil." 

•' Both are of Latium," weeping he replied, 
" Whom tortured thus thou seest : but who art thoi 
That hast inquired of us?" To whom my guide . 
** One that descend with this man, who yet lives, 
From rock to rock, and show him hell's abyss ** 

Then started they asunder, and each tum'd 
Trembling toward us, with the rest, whose ear 
Those words redounding struck. To me my liege 
Address'd him . " Speak to them whatever thou Uut*' 

And I therewith began : " So may no time 
I*ilch your remembrance from the thoughts of men 
In the upper world, but after many suns 
Survive it, as ye tell me, who ye are, 
And of whal race ye come. Your punishment, 
Unseemly and disgustful in its kind. 
Deter you not from opening thus much to me." 

" Arezzo was my dwelling,"* answered one, 
*' And me Albero of Sienna brought 
To die by fire : but that, for which I died, 
Leads me not here. True is, in sport I told himt 
That I had learnM to wing my flight m air ; 
And he, admiring much, as he was void 
Of wisdom, will'd me to declare to him 
The secret of mine art : and only hence, 
Because I made him not a Deedalus, 
Prevaird on one supposed his sire to burn me. 
But Minos to this chasm, last of the ten, 
For that I practised alchemy on earth. 
Has doom'd me. Him no subterfuge eludes." 

Then to the bard I spake : " Was ever race 
Light as Sienna's?' Sure not France herself 
Can show a tribe so frivolous and vain." 

The other leprous spirit heard my words, 
And thus retuni'd : " Be Stricca' from this charge 

1 ^rexto was my dweUing,] Grifolino of Arezzo, who prom 
fased Albero, son of the Bishop of Sienna, that he would teacli 
him the art of flying; and, because he did not keep his prom- 
Sse, Albero prevailed on his father to have him burnt for a 

' — — — Was ever race 
Z.urA£ aa Sienna's 7] The same imputation Is again cast 
on the Sienncse, PurK*i Canto zlii. 141. 

* Siriece^l This Is said ironically. Stricca, Niccolo SaUm- 
»eni, Caccia of Asciano, and Abbaeliato, or Meo de' Folcac- 
chlerl, belonged to a company of prodigal and Inxurfona 
ffnmg men In Sienna, called the *^br^ata godereeda.** K\c- 
soli was tkc inventor of a new manner of using clovee In 

198 THE VISION. is»-l% 

exempted, he who knew so temperately 
To lay out fortune's gifts ; and Niccolo, 
Who first the spice's costly luxury 
Discover'd in that garden,' where such seed 
Roots deepest in the soil : and be that troop 
Exempted, with whom Caccia of Asciano 
Lavished his vineyards and wide-spreading weodb) 
And his rare wisdom Abbagliato^ show'd 
A spectacle for alL That thou mayst know 
Wh9 seconds thee against the Sicnneso 
Thus gladly, bend this way thy sharpened »ght, 
That well my face may answer to thy ken ; 
So shalt thou see I am Capocchio's ghost,* 
Who forged transmuted metals by the power 
Of alchemy ; and if I scan thee right. 
Thou needs must well remember how I aped 
Creative nature by my subtle art" 

cookery, not very well understood by the commentators, uud 
which was termed the '* eoHutna riuaJ'* 

Pagliarinl, in his Historical Observations on the daadfi' 
reglo, lib. iiL cap. 13, adduces a passage from a MS. History oi 
Sienna, in which it is told that these spendthrifts, oat of the 
sum raised for the sale of their estates, built a palace, which 
they inhabited in common, and made the receptacle of their 
apparatus for luxurious enjoyment; and that among their 
other extravagances, they had their horses shod with silver, 
and forbade their servants to pick up the precious shoes ii 
they dropped off. The end was, as might be expected, ex- 
treme poverty and wretchedness. Lan^no says, they spent 
two hundred thousand florins in twentv months. 

Horses shod with silver are meationed by Fazio degli 

Ancora in questo tempo si fu vistu 
Quel Roberto Guiscardo, che d*argento 
I cavagli ferrb per far Tacquisto. 

Dittamondo, 1. it. c 34, as corrected by Ferticail. 

1 fn that forden.] Sienna. 

s Abhoffiiato.] Lombardi understands ** Abbagliato** not to 
be the name of a man, but to be the epithet to **senno,'* and 
construes " B Tabbagliato suo senno proferse," " and mani- 
fested to the world the blindness of their understanding." 
So little doubt, however, is made of there being snoh a per- 
son, that Allacci speaks of his grandfather Folcaccbiero de* 
Folcacchieri, of Sienna, as one who may dispute with the 
Sicilians the praise of bcbig the first inventor of Italian po- 
etry. Tiraboschi, indeed, observes, that this genealogy is not 
authenticated by Allacci; yet it is difllcuit to suppose that he 
should have mentioned it at all, if Meo de* Folcacchieri, ur 
Abbagliato, as he was called, had never existed Vol I. p 
». Mr. Mathias* edit. 

* Capoeekio*» gkoH.] Capocchlo of Sienna, who Is said ti' 
I ave been a fellow-Aiudent of Daniels, in natcral philoiophv 

1*33 HELL, Canto XXX. 199 



ji the same gulf, other Idiids of impofttars, as thoM who have 
counterfeited the persons of others, or debased the ennnenl 
coin, or deceived by speech under false pretences, are de- 
kciibed as snfieilng i^rions diseases. Sinon of Troy and 
Adamo of Brescia matually reproach each other with their 
heveral impostures. 

What time resentment bnm'd in Juno^s breast 
For Semele against the Theban blood, 
As more than once in dire mischance was rued ; 
Such fatal phrensy seized on Athamas/ 
That he his spouse beholding with a babe 
Laden on either arm, " Spread out," he cried, 
" The meshes, that I take the lioness 
And the yoimg lions at the pass :" then forth 
Stretch'd he lus merciless talons, grasping one. 
One helpless innocent, Learchus named, 
Whom swinging down he dash'd upon a rock ; 
And with her other burden,''' self-destroy'd, 
The hapless mother plunged. And when the pride 
Of all-presuming Troy fell from its height, 
By fortune overwhelm'd, and the old king 
With his realm perishM ; then did Hecuba,' 
A wretch forlorn and captive, when she saw 
Polyxena first slaughter'd, and her son, 
Her Folydorus,* on the wild sea-beach 
Next met the mourner's view, then reft of sense 
Did she run barking even as a dog ; 
Such mighty power had grief to wrench her soul. 
But ne'er the Furies, or of Thebes, or Troy, 
With such fell cruelty were seen, their goads 
Infixing in th? limbs of man or beast. 
As now two pale and naked ghosts I saw, 
That gnarling wildly scamper'd, like the swine 
Excluded from his stye. One reach'd Capocchio, 
And in the neck-joint sticking deep his fangs, 
Dragg'd him, that, o'er the solid pavement nibb'd 

^ ^thamas.] From Ovid, Metam., lib. iv. 
Protinus .bolides, &c. 
With her other burden.] 

Seque super pontnm nnllo tardata timore 

Mittit, onnsqna sunm. Ovid, Metam.^ lib. i » 

* Meeuba,] See Enripodes, Hecuba; and Ovid, Metaoi- 
« HerPelfiorna.^ 

Aspicit ejectum Polidorl in littoro carpus. Omd Md 

%j)0^ THE VISION. 31-61 

His belly stretch'd out prone. The other shape. 
He of Arezzo, there left tremblmg, spake : 
" That sprite of air is Schicchi ;' in like mood 
Of random mischief vents he still his spite." 

To whom I answering : '*Ohl as thou dost hoiw 
The other may not flesh its jaws on thee, 
Be patient to inform us, who it is, 
Ere it speed hence." — " That is the ancient soul 
Of wretched Myrrha,*" he replied, " who bumM 
With most unholy flame for her own sire, 
And a false shape assuming, so performed 
The deed of sin ; e'en as the other there. 
That onward passes, dared to counterfeit 
Donati's features, to feign'd testament 
The seal affixing, that himself might gain. 
For his own share, the lady of the henL" 

When vanished the two furious shades, on «vhoni 
Mine eye was held, I tum'd it back to view 
The other cursed spirits. One I saw 
In fashion like a lute, had but the groin 
Been sever'd where it meets the forked part 
Swoln dropsy, disproportipning the limbs 
With ill-converted moisture, that the pauncli 
Suits not the visage, open'd wide his lips. 
Gasping as in the hectic man for drought. 
One towards the chin, the other upward curfd. 

" O ye ! who in this world of misery. 
Wherefore I know not, are exempt from pain," 
Thus he began, " attentively regard 
Adamo's wo.* When living, full supply 
Ne'er lack'd me of what most I coveted ; 
One drop of water now, alas ! I crave. 
The rills, that glitter down the grassy slopes 
Of Casentino,^ making fresh and soft 

1 Sehieehu\ Gianni Schicchi, who was of the family of 
CavalcanU, possessed such a Acuity of moulding his features 
to the resemblance of others, that he was employed by Simon 
Donati to personate Buoso Donati, then recently deceased, 
and to make a will, leaving Simon his heir; for which service 
he was remunerated with a mare of extraordinary value, here 
tailed '* the lady of the herd.** 

s Mfrrha.] See Ovid, Metam., lib. z. 

* Adamo'9 wo.] Adamo of Brescia, at the instigation of 
duido, Alessandro, and their brother Aghinulfo, loras of R> 
mena, counterfeited the coin of Florence ; for which crime 
he was burnt Landino says, that in his time the peasants 
itiil pointed out a pile of stones near Romena, as the place 
vf his execution. See Troya, Veltro Allqcoiieo, p. 95k 

< Catentino.^ Efwiena is a part of OuMiitlao 

»-^ HELL, Ca»to XXX. 90I 

The banks whereby they glide to Anio*s stzeaiu, 

Stand ever in my view ; and not in vain ; 

For more the pictured semblance dries me up, 

Much more than the disease, which makes the flesh 

Desert these sbriveird cheeks. So from the plac^ 

Where I transgressed, stem justice urging me, 

Takes means to quicken more my laboring siglui 

There is Romena, where I falsified 

The metal with the Baptist's form impressed, 

For which on earth I left my body burnt 

But if I here might see the sorrowing soul 

Of Guide, Alessandro, or their brother. 

For Branda's limpid spring^ I would not change 

The welcome sight One is e'en now within, 

If truly the mad spirits tell, that round 

Are wandering. But wherein besteads me that? 

My limbs are fetter'd. Were I but so light, 

That I each hundred years might move one inch, 

I had set forth already on this path, 

Seeking him out amidst the shapeless crew, 

Although eleven miles it wind, not less^ 

Than half of one across. They brought me down 

Among this tribe ; induced by them, I stamp'd 

The florins with three carats of alloy."' 

" Who are that abject pair," I next inquired, 
'* That closely bounding thee upon thy right 
Lie smoking, like a hand in winter steep'd 
In the chill stream ?"— " When to this gulf I dropped,** 

1 Branda** limpid gpriw.l Afonntainin Sienna. 

* Less,] Lombardi Jtutly concludes that as Adanio wishes 
to exaKerate the difficulty of finding the spirit whom he 
wished to see, " men," and not ** piu" (*• less," and not " more* 
than the half of a mile) is probably the true reading ; foj 
there are anthMlties for both. 

* 7^ JLorina with thru carats of alloy.] The florin was a 
coin that onght to have had twenty-four carats of puregold. 
VlUani relates, that it was first used at Florence in 1S9^ an 
era of great prosperity in the annals of the republic; before 
which time tiieir most valuable coinage was uf silver. Uist, 
Ah. vl. c. liv. 

fVizio degll Uberti uses the word to denote the' purest gold 

Para era come Tore del fiorino. 

Dittamondot L. 11. cap. ziv. 

** Among the ruins of Chaucer's house at Woodstock they 
found an ancient coin of Florence ; I think, a Florein, an- 
ciently common in England. Chaucer, Pardon, Tale v. S290 

For that the Floraines been so fair and bright. 

Edward the Tliird, in 1344, altered it from a lower value to 
As. 84. The particular piece I have mentioned seeron about 
that value." fFocf ox, Hi»t of Eng. Poetry, v. 11. sect 11. p. 44 


He aiis\ '6r*d, " here I found them ; since that how 
Thoy have not tum'd, nor ever shall, I ween» 
Till time hath run his course. One is that dame, 
The false accuser* of the Hebrew youth ; 
Sinon the other, that false Greek from Troy. 
Sharp fever drains the reeky moistness out, 
In such a cloud upsteam'd." When that he heardj 
One, gall'd perchance to be so darkly named, 
With clench'd hand smote him on the braced pauuoU 
That like a drum resounded : but forthwith 
Adamo smote him on the face, the blow 
Returning with his arm, that seem'd as hard. 

** Though my o'erweighty limbs have ta'en from mt 
The power to move," said he, " I have an arm 
At liberty for such employ." To whom 
Was answered : " When thou wentest to the fire, . 
Thou hadst it not so ready at command. 
Then readier when it coin'd the impostor gold" 

And thus the dropeied : " Ay, now speak'st thcu 
But there thou gavest not such true testimony, [true : 
When thou wast questioned of the truth, at Troy." 

" If I spake false, thou falsely stamp'dst the coin." 
Said Sinon ; " I am here for but one fault, 
And thou for more than any imp beside." 

" Remember," he replied, ** O perjured one ! 
The horse remember, that did teem with death ; 
And all the world be witness to thy guilt" 

" To thine," retum'd the Greek , " witness the thiist 
Whence thy tongue cracks, witness the fluid mound 
Reared by thy belly up before thine eyes, 
A mass corrupt." To whom the coiner thus : 
" Thy mouth gapes wide as ever to let pass 
Its evil saying. Me if thirst assails. 
Yet I am sti^d with moisture. Thou art parch'U 
Pains rack thy head : no urging wouldst thou need 
To make thee lap Narcissus' mirror up." 

I was all fix'd to listen, when my guide 
Admonished : " Now beware. A little more, 
And I do quarrel with thee." I perceived 
How angrily he spake, and towards him tum'd 
With shame so poignant, as remember'd yet 
Confounds me. A^ a man that dreams of hann 
Befallen him, dreaming wishes it a dream. 
And that which is, desires as if it were not ; 
Sach then was I, who, wanUng power to speak, 

' rA« false aeenser.] Vcliphar*! wtfik 

138-14$. HELL, Canto XXXL 203 

Wish'd to excuse myself, and all the while 
Excused me, though unweetmg that I did. [shame, 
" More grievous fault than thine has been, less 
My master cried, « might 'expiate. Therefore cut 
All sorrow from thy soul ; and if again 
Chance bring thee, where like conference is held 
Think I am ever at thy side. To hear 
Such wrangling is a joy for vulgar minds " 



The Poets, following the sonnd of a load horn, are led by it 
to the ninth circle, in which there are four rounds, one en- 
closed within the other,' and containidg as many sorts of 
Traitors ; but the present Canto shows only that the circle 
is encompassed with Giants, one of whom, Antsus, takes 
them both in his arms and places them at the bottom of. 
the circle. 

The very tongue,' whose keen reproof before . 
Had wounded me, that either cheek was stain'd. 
Now minister'd my cure. So have I heard, 
Achilles* and his father's javelin caused 
Pain first, and then the boon of health restored. 

Turning our back upon the vale of wo, 
We cross'd the encircled mound in silence. There 
Was less than day and less than night, that far 
Mine eye advanced not : but I heard a horn 
Sounded so loud, the peal it rang had made 

- - - — - ' 

* 7%e very ton^ve.] 

Vnlnns in Uercnleo que quondam fecerat hoste 
Vulneris auxilium Pelias hasta fait. 

Ovidi Rem. Amor.^ 4? 

The same allusion was made by Bernard de Ventadour, b 
Provencal poet in the middle of the twelfth century; and 
MUlot observes, that ** it was a singular instance of erudlUmi 
In a Troubadour.'* But it is not impossible, as WartoQ re- 
marks, (Hist of Engl. Poetry, vol. ii. sect x. p. 315,) but tbaf 
he might have been indebted for it to some of the early n> 

In Chaucer's Squier*s Tale, a sword of similar qnalltv '•& 

And other folk have wondred on the sweard, 
That could so piercen through every thing ; 
And fell in speech of Telephus the king, 
And of Achilles fat his queint spere. 
For he couth with it both heale and dere. 

^o Bhakspeare, Henry VI. P. II. act v. sc. 1. 

Whose smile and frown 1 ke to Achilles* speax 
is able with the change to kill and cure. 

g04 THE VISION. il-4h 

The thunder feeble. FoUowmg its courve 

The adverse way, my strained eyes were bent 

On that one spot. So terrible a blast 

Orlando' blew not, when that dismal rout 

O'erthrew the host of Charlemain, and quench'd 

His samtly warfare. Thitherward not long 

My head was raised, when many a lofty tower 

Methought I spied. " Master," said I, *' what land 

Is this V* He answered straight : " Too long a spaor 

Of intervening darkness has thine eye 

To traverse : thou hast therefore widely err'd 

In thy imagining. Thither arrived 

Thou well shalt s&e, how distance can delude 

The sense. A little therefore urge thee on." 

Then tenderly he caught me by the hand : 
" Yet know," said he, " ere farther we advance. 
That it less strange may seem, these are not towers. 
But giants. In the pit they stand immersed. 
Each from his navel downward, round the bank.'* 

As when a fog disperseth gradually. 
Our vision traces what the mist involves 
Condensed in air ; so piercing through the gross 
And gloomy atmosphere, as more and more 
We near'd toward the brink, mine error fled, 
Aud fear came o'er me. As with circling round 
Of turrets, Montereggiou^ crowns his walls ; 
E'en thus the shore, encompassing the abyss^ 
Was turreted with giants,' half their length 
Uprearing, horrible, whom Jove from heaven 
Yet threatens, when his muttering thunder rolb* 

Of one abeady I descried the face, 
Shoulders, and breast, and of the belly huge 
Great part, and both arms down along his ribs. 

AU-teeming Nature, when her plastic hand 
Left framing of these monsters, did display 
Fast doubt her wisdom, taking from mad War 

i Orlando.] 

When Charlemain with all his peerage fell 

At Fontarabia. Milton, P. Z.., b. i. JKA. 

8ee Warton*8 Hist, of Eng. Poetry, vol. i. sect. lil. p. IS 
'^This is the horn which Orlando won fh>m the giant Jat* 
nund, and which, as Turpin and the islandiu bans report, 
was endued magical power, and might be heard at the 
distance of twenty miles.** Charlemain and Orlando are In- 
troduced in the Paradise, Canto zviil. 

s Montoregfion.] A castle near Bienna. 

> CHanto.l The giants round the pit, It is remarked b) 
Warton, are in the Arabian vein of fabling. See D*Hefffaclol 
Bibl. Orientale. V. Rocail, p. 717, a 

n-7» HELL, Cakto XXXI. ^Qfi 

Such slaTes t« do his bidding ; and if sne 
Repent her not of the elephant and whale, 
Who ponden well confesBes her therein 
Wiser and more discreet ; for when brute force 
And evil will are back'd with subtlety. 
Resistance none avails. His visage seem'd 
In length and bulk, as doth the pine' that tops 
Saint reter's Roman fane ; and the other bones 
Of like proportion, so that from above 
The bank, which girdled him below, such neight 
Arose his stature, that three Friezelanders 
Had striven in vain to reach but to his hair. 
Full thirty ample palms was he exposed 
Downward from whence a man his garment loofK. 
" Raphel' bal ameth, sabl alml :" 
So shouted his fierce lips, which sweeter hymns 
Became not ; and my guide addressed him thus : 
" O senseless spirit ! let thy horn for thee 
Interpret : therewith vent thy rage, if rage 
Or other passion wring thee. Search thy neck, 
There shalt thou find the belt that binds it on. 
Spirit confused !* lo, on thy mighty breast 
Where hangs the baldrick !" Then to me he spake 
^* He doth accuse himselfl Nimrod is this, 
Through whose ill counsel in the world no more 
One tongue prevsdls. But pass we on, nor waste 
Our words ; for so each language is to him, 
As his to others, understood by none." 

Then to the leftward turning sped we forth, 
And at a sling's throw found another shade 
Far fiercer and more huge. I cannot say* 
What master hand had girt him ; but he held 
Behind the right arm fetter'd, and before, 

1 7^ jrine.] "The laige pine of bronze, which once orna 
mented the top of the mole of Adrian, was afterwards em 

goyed to decorate the top of the belfiry of St. Peter ; and having 
ccordlng to Bali) been thrown down by lightning, it was, 
after lying some time on tlie steps of this palace, transferred 
to the place where it now is, in the Pope's garden, by the 
side of the great corridor of Belvedere. In the time of our 
Poet, the pine was then either on the belfly or on the steps of 
Bt. Peter.** Lmnbardi. 

s Rapkelt a-e.] These unmeaning sounds, it is supposed, are 
neant to express the eonfosion of languages at the building 
•f the tower of Babel 

s AptrtC eonfu$e«L\ 1 had before translated ** Wild spirit !** 
and have altered it at the suggestion of Mr.Darley, who well 
observes, that *' anima confnsa** is peculiarly appropriate to 
Vinuod. the author of the conftision at BabeL 

fi06 THE VISION. 8ii-l» 

The other, with a chiuii, that fastcn'd him 

From the neck down ; and five times round his fomi 

Apparent met the wreathed links. ** This proud one 

Would of his strength against almighty Jove 

Make trial," said my guide : " whence he is thus 

Requited : Ephialtes him they call. 

Great was his prowess, when the giants brought 

Fear on the gods : those arms, which then he plied. 

Now moves he never." Forthwith I retum'd : 

•* Fain would I, if 't were possible, mine eyes, 

Of Briareus immeasurable, gam'd 

Experience next." He answer'd : " Thou shalt sen 

Not far from hence Anteeus, who both speaks i 

And is unfettered, who shall place us there | 

Where g^It is at its depth. Far onward stands 

Whom thou wouldst fain behold, in chains, and maiis 

Like to this spirit, save that in his looks 

More fell he seems." By violent earthquake rock'd 

Ne'er shook a tower, so reeling to its base. 

As Ephialtes. More than ever then 

I dreaded death ; nor than the terror more 

Had needed, if I had not seen the cords 

That held him fast. We, straightway joumeymg on 

Came to Antaeus, who, five ells complete 

Without the head, forth issued from the cave. 

" O thou, who in the fortunate vale,^ that made 
Great Scipio heir of glory, when his sword 
Drove back the troop of Hannibal in flight, 
Who thence of old didst carry for thy spoil 
An hundred lions ; and if thou hadst fought 
In the high eonflict on thy brethren's side. 
Seems as men yet believed, that through thine arm 
The sons of earth had conquer'd ; now vouchsafe 
To place us down beneath, where numbing cold 
Locks up Cocytus. Force not that we crave 
Or Tityus' help or Typhon's. Here is one 
Can give what in this realm ye covet. Stoop 
Therefore, nor scornfully distort thy lip. 
He in the upper world can yet bestow 
Renown on thee ; for he doth live, and looks 
For life yet longer, if before the tiioe 
Grace call him not unto herself." Thus spake 
The teacher He in haste forth stretch'd his hand» 

1 The fortunate vale.l The conntry sear Gsrthage. Bee 
Uv. Hist, 1. xxju, and Lncan, Phars., 1. iv. 500, Ate. Dante 
has kept the latter of these writen in his eye thronghODt all 
ibii Dasscge. 

183-136. HELL, Canto XX KL 907 

And caught my guide. Alcides' whilom felt 
That grapple, straitened sore. Soon as my gaid(« 
Had felt it, he hespake me thus: " Thk way, 
That I may clasp thee ;" then so caught me up. 
That we were both one burden. As appears 
The tower of Carisenda,* from beneath 
Where it doth lean, if chance a passing cloud 
So sail across, that opposite it hangs ; 
Such then AntsBUs seemM, as at mine ease 
I mark'd him 8too{Mng. I were fain at times 
To have pass'd another way. Yet in the abyss, 
That Lucifer with Judas low ingulfs. 
Lightly he placed us ; nor, there leaning, stay'd i 
But rose, as in a bark the stately mast. 



This Canto treats of the first, and, in part, of the second of 
those ronndt, into which the ninth and last, or frozen cir 
cle, is divided. In the former, called Ca'ina, Dante finds 
Camiccione de* Pazzi, who dves him an acconnt of other 
sinners who are there mtntshed ; and in the next, named 
Antenora, he bears in like manner firom Bocca degli Abbati 
who his fellow-sufferers are. 

CoDLD I command rough rhymes and hoarse, to 
That hole of sorrow o'er which every rock [suit 
His firm abutment rears, then might the vein 
Of fancy rise full springing : but not mine 
Such measures, and with faltering awe I touch 
The mighty theme ; for to descri^ the depth 
Of all the universe, is no emprize 
To jest with, and demands a tongue not used 
To infant babbling.' Bui. let them assist 

> Jileidet.'] The combat between Hercules and Antcns It 
adduced by the Poet in his treatise "De Monarchic," lib. ii., 
as a raroof of the Judgment of God displayed in the duel, 
Boeording to the singular superstition of those times. " Cer- 
tamine vero dupliciter Dei Judicium aperitnr vel ex colli- 
•iaae Tirlnni, sicnt fit per doellnm pngilum, qui duelliones 
etiam vocantur; vel ex contentlone plurium ad aliquodslg' 
inim pnevalere conantium, sicnt fit per pugnam athletanim 
ennentinm ad bravium. Primus istorum modorara apod 

Esntiies fignratns fuit in illo duello Herculis et Antsei, c^ittfl 
ncanus meminit in quarto PharsalisB, et Ovidius In nono di: 
knmm transmntatione.*' 
* Tke tower of Caritenda.] The leaning tower at Rolognai 
■ ■ ■■■ ■' Ji tongue not uoed 

N£ da lingua, che chiami mamma, o babbo 


My song, the tuneful maidens, by whose aid 

Amphion wall'd in Thebes ; so with the truth 

My speech shall best accord. Oh ill-starr'd folkj 

Beyond all others wretched ! who abide 

In such a mansion, as scarce thought finds words 

To speak of, better had ye here on earth 

Been flocks, or mountain goats. As down we stood 

In the dark pit beneath the giants feet, 

But low(r far than they, and I did gaze 

Still on the lofty battlement, a voice 

Bespake me thus : " Look how thou walkest Tlie^ 

Good heed, thy soles do tread not on the heads 

Of thy poor brethren." Thereupon I tum'd, 

And saw before and underneath my feet 

A lake,' whose frozen surface liker seemed 

To glass than water. Not so thick a veil 

In winter e'er hath Austrian Danube spread 

O'er his still course, nor Tanais far remote 

Under the chilling sky. RoUM o*er that mass 

Had Tabemich or Pietrapana" fallen. 

Not e*en its rim had creak'd. As peeps the frog 

Croaking above the wave, what time in dreams 

The village gleaner oft pursues her toil. 

So, to where modest shame appears,' thus low 

Blue pinch*d and shrined in ice the spirits stood. 

Moving their teeth in shrill note like the stork.* 

Dante In his treatise " De Vulg. Eloq./* speaking of woida 
not admigsibie in the loftier, or, as he calls it, tragic style of 
poetry, says : " In qnomm nnmero nee pnerilia propter suam 
fiimplicitatein at Mamma et Babbo," lib. ii. c. vll. 

> A lake.] The same torment is introdnced Into the Eddfi^ 
cfMnpUed in the eleventh and twelfth centuries. See the 
'*8ong of the Son,** translated by the Rev. James Beresford, 
London, 1805 ; and compare Warton*s Hist of Eng. Poetiy, 
V. i. dissert, i., and Gray's Posthumous Works, edited by Blir. 
Mathias, v. li. p. 106. Indeed, as an escape from ** the pen- 
alty of Adam, the season's difference," forms one of the 
most natural topics of consolation for the loss of life, so does 
a renewal of that suflerlng in its fiercest extremes of beat 
and cold bring before the imagination of men in general (ex- 
cept indeed the terrors of a self-accusing conscience) the 
liveliest idea of ftiture punishment. Refer to Shakspeare and 
Milton in the notes to Canto ill. 83 ; and see Deuce's Illiistra- 
tions c^Shakspeaie, 8vo. 1807, v. i. p. 182. 

* Tabemieh cr Pietrapana.] The one a mountain In fikJa* 
vonla, the other in that tract of country called the Garftgnanii 
lot far from Lucca. 

* T\> where modest ehatne appears.] " As hlgn as to the tMn ' 

* Jftfotiv their teeth in ahritt noU Uka ths BUffk.] 

Metlendo I denU in nota di eieogna. 

36-63 HELL, Canto XXXII. 309 

His face each downward held ; their mouth tlM cold« 
Their eyes exprees'd the dolor of their heart. 

A. space I look'd around, then at my feet 
Saw two so strictly join'd, that of their head 
The very hairs were mingled. " Tell me ye. 
Whose bosoms thus together press," said I, 
"Who are ye?" At that sound their necks the^ 

And when their looks were jftcd up to me. 
Straightway their eyes, before all moist within, 
Distill'd upon their hps, and the frost bound 
The tears betwixt those orbs, and held them there. 
Plank unto plank hath never cramp closed up 
So stoutly. Whence, like two enraged goats, 
They clash'd together: them such fury seized. 

And one, from whom the cold both ears had reft, 
Exclaim'd, still looking downward : <* Why on us 
Dost speculate so long? If thou wouldst know 
Who are these two,^ the valley, whence his wave 
Bisenzio slopes, did for its master own 
Their sire Alberto, and next him themselves. 
They from one body issued : and throughout 
Calna thou mayst search, nor find a shade 
More worthy in congealment to be fix'd ; 
Not him,^ whose breast and shadow Arthur's hand 
At that one blow dissevered ; not Focaccia ;' 
No, not this spirit, whose o'erjutting head 
Obstructs my onward view : he bore the name 
Of Mascheroni ^ Tuscan if thou be, 

8a Boccaccio, 6. viii. N. 7. " Lo scolar cattivello quasi ei 
cuEoa divenato si forte batteva i denti." 

' Who are the*» two.] Alessandro and Napoleone, sons of 
Alberto Albert!, who murdered each other. They were pro- 
piietorB of the valley of Falterona, where the Bisenzio haj^ 
its source, a river that falls into the Arno abont six milei? 
trom Florence. 

* M'ot Am.] Mordrec. son of King Arthur. In the romance 
of Lancelot of the Lake, Arthur, having discovered the trai- 
fionms intentions of his son, pierces him through with the 
stroke of his lance, so that the sunbeam passes through tho 
body of Mordrec ; and this disruption of the shadow is no 
doubt what our Poet alludes to in the text. 

s JFbeaeeiaJl Focaccia of Canceliieri (the Fistoian family) 
whose atrocious act pf revenge asainst his uncle is said to 
have gLven rise to the parties of the Bianchi and Neri, in 
the year 1300. See 6. VlUani, Blst., lib. viii. c. 37, ana 
Macchiavelli, Hist, lib. ii. The account of the latter writer 
differs much from that given by Landino in his Conunen- 

* Jiatehertmi,] Sasstl Mascheroni, a Florentine, who uim 
murdered his uncle. 


Well knowest who he wa& And to cut short 

All farther question, in my form behold 

What once was Oamlccione.^ I await 

Carlino' here my kinsman, whose deep guilt 

Shall wash out mine." A thousand visages 

Then mark'd I, which the keen and eager cold 

Had shaped into a doggish grin ; whence creeps 

A shivering horror o'er me, at the thought 

Of those fiore shallows. While we joumey'd on 

Toward the middle, at whose point unites 

All heavy substance, and I trembling went 

Through that eternal dullness, I know not 

If wilr it were, or destiny, or chance, 

But, passmg 'midst the heads, my foot did striko 

With violent blow against the face of oue. [claim'd 

" Wherefore dost bruise me ?" weeping he r y 
" Unless thy errand be some fresh revenge 
For Montaperto,^ wherefore troublest me ?" 

I thus : ** Instructor, now await me here, 
That I through him may rid me of my doubt : 
Thenceforth what haste thou wilt" The teacher 
And to that shade I spake, who bitterly [paused ; 
Still cursed me in his wrath. " What art thou, qieak. 
That railest thus on others?" He replied : 
" Now who art thou, that smiting others' cheeks. 
Through Antenora* roamest, with such force 
As were past sufferance, wert thou living still?" 

" And I am living, to thy joy perchance." 
Was my reply, " if fame be dear to thee, 

> Camieeione.) Camlccione de* Pazzl of Valdarno, by whom 
his kinsman Uliertino was treacherously put to death. 

* Carlino.] One of the same family. He betrayed the 
Castel di Piano Travigne, In Valdarno, to the Florentines, 
after the refugees of the Bianca and Ghibeiline party had 
defended it ag^nst a sieee for twenty-nine days, in the sniu- 
nier of 1302. See G. Vlllani, lit. viii. c. lii., and Dino Oom 
uogni, lib. ii. 

*lf via.] 

Whether upheld by strength, or chance, or fate. 

MUUm, P. I^ b. L laa 

4 MmtMerto.] The defeat of the Ouelfl at Montapeno 
occaalonea by the treachery of Bocca deglt Abbad, who, dm- 
ling the engafement, cut im the hand of Giaeopo del Vacca 
de* Fazzi, bearer of the Florentine standard. 6. Viilanl, lib. vt. 
9. Ixzx. and Notei to Canto z. This event happened in 190O 

B AuUm0ra.] ** So called from Antenor, who, according to 
IKct^ Cretensis (Do Bello Tm)., lib. v.) and Dares Fhryglas 
(De Excidio Trojs) betrayed IVoy his country.'* LowAm^A 
Uee note on Pug., Canto ▼ 75. Antenor acts this part in 
Uooeaccio*s Filostrato, and in Chance r*s Trotins and CreseidM 

13-119 HELL, Canto XXXII. 91 1 

That with the xest I may thy name emt>ll.*' 

** The contrary of what I covet moet," 
Said he, ** thou tender'st : hence ! nor rex me more 
III knoweet thoa to flatter in this vale." 

Then seizing on his hinder scalp I cried : 
*< Name thee, or not a hair shall tarry here." 

" Rend all away," he answerM, <* yet for that 
I will not tell, n'>r show thee, who I am, 
lliotigh at my heaJ thou pluck a thousand times." 

Now I had gnisp*d his tresses, and stripped off 
More than one tuft, he barking, with his eyes 
Drawn in and downward, when another cried, 
** What ails thee, Bocca? Sound not loud enough 
Thy chattering teeth, but thou must bark outright 1 
What dcTil wrings thee ?"— ." Now," said I, " be dumb. 
Aoconed traitor I To thy shame, of thee 
True tidings will I bear."—" Off!" he replied ; 
" Tell what thou list : but, as thou scape from hencei 
To speak cf him whose tongue hath been so glib, 
Forget not : here he wails £e Frenchman's gold. 
' Him of Duera,'^ thou canst say, ' I mark'd, 
' Where the starved nnners pine.' If thou be ask'd 
What other shade was with them, at thy side 
Is Beccaria,' whose red gorge distain'd 
The biting axe of Florence. Farther on, 
If I misdeem not, Soldanieri* bides, 
With Ganellon,* and Tribaldello,'^ hun 

1 Him of DueraJj Bnoso of Cremona, of the family of 
Onera, who was bnbed by Guy de Montfort, to leave a pass 
between Piedmont and Panna, with the defence of which he 
had been intmsted by the Gfaibeliines, open to the army of 
Charles of Anjoa, A. D. 1265, at which the people of Cre- 
mona were so enrafed, that they extirpated the whole family. 
0. \lHani, lib. viL c iv. 

* Beeearia,} Abbot of Vallombrosa, who was the Pope s 
Legate at Florence, where his intrigues in favor of the Ghi- 
beUines being discovered, he was beheaded. I do not finJ 
the oecmnence in Viilanl, nw do the commentatois say to 
what Pope he was legate. By Landino he is reported to 
bave been fkom Parma ; by Vellntello, from Pavla. 

* SManien.] ** Gianni Soldanieri," says Villani, Hist, lio. 
liL c. xiv., ** pat himself at the head of the people, in the 
Ikipes of risii^; into power, not aware that the result would 
bo mischief to the Ghlbelline perty, and his own ruin ; an 
•vent which seems ever to have benllen him who has head* 
ed the popolaee in Florence.**— A. D. laoe. 

* Gam§Uoiu\ The betrayer of Charlemain, mentioned by 
Aiebhlshoi^Tnrpin. lie is a common instance of treachery 
»*lh the poets of the middle ages. 

Tn>p son fol e mal pensant, 

Pis valent que Gnenelon. Tkitaut^ Rot de JV^iocm 

W» covi Wto Aft «iber ; Mi, » tend 

Dad a» ^^ hs £i^ W liie fibers 
WlBHetlieafiwJBMiiL Xoi 

Oh Til ■ ili|T*r li ii^iliii Tj ih ■!' fiii'il. 
TYaok OB tkst dnll aad Mi'its eaitege be. 

'^OUaon! vb* ihRr at ■» bewtiy alga ofiiato 
'GaoBt bim tbw fRT"^ m, fel ■» hemr," aid 1, 
*< Tbe caxaty on sKb cwMfitii, tbat if n^t 
WamBi tby giieTaiioe» kMnriii|r vbo ye are. 
And vbat tbe eoior of bis nBiDg 
I may repay tbee m tbe iraild aboTr, 
Tf that, idierewitb I qieak, be mobt so ktiig' 




The Poet is told by OouBt UgottM de* Gbenidescbi of tbc 
cniel manner in which he and his children were Punished 
in the tower at Pisa, by command of the Archbishop R119- 
g^ri. He next fiacouraes of the third round, called Ptolo- 
mea, wherein those are pnnishedwho have betrayed otlien 
under the semblance of kindness ; and ammg these he 
finds the Friar Alberigo de* Hanftedi, who trils him of mo 
whose sold was alrnidy tonnented in that place, tbonph 
his body appeared stili to be alive npon the earth, beirg 
yielded np to the governance of a fiend. 

Hn jawB uplifting from their fell repast, 
That sinner wiped them on the hairs o' the head 
Which he behind had mangled, then began : 
" Thy will obeying, I call up afresh 
Sorrow past cure ; which, but to think of, wringi} 
My heart, or ere I tell on 't. But if woids, 
That I may utter, shall prove seed to bear 

O new Scariot and new Ganilion, 
O false dissembler, &c. 

CftaiiMT, A*<Hi»s*« PriMWM TaU^ 

And In the Monke*s Tale, Peter of Spaine. 

« TribaldeUo.) TribaldeUo de* Manfred!, who was bribea 
to betray the city of Faenza, A. D. 138SL G. Villani, lib. vtl 
1, Izxi. 

> Tifdeua.] See Statins, Theb . lib. viii. ad fiaoai 

b-U IlELL, Canto XXXIH. 2|S 

Fruit of eternal infamy to him, 

The traitor whom I gnaw at, thou at once 

Shalt see me speak and weep. Who thou mayiit be 

I know not, nor how here below art come : 

But Florentine thou seemest of a truth, 

When I do hear thee. Know, I was on earth 

Count Ugolino,' and the Archbishop he 

1 Qmnt Ufolino.} " In the year 1288, in the month of July, 
Pisa was much divided by competitors for the sovereignty ; 
one partv, composed of certain of the Gaelphi, being headed 
by the Judge Nino di Galliua de' Visconti ; another, consist 
ing of others of the same faction, by the Count Ugolino de* 
Gherardeschl ; and a third by the Archbishop Ruggieri degli 
Ubaldinl, with the Lanfranchi, Sismondi, Gualandl. and other 
Ghibeliine houses. The Count Ugotino, to efiiQct his pur- 
pose, united with the Archbishop and his party, and having 
betrayed Nino, his sister's son, they contrived that he ana 
his followers should either be driven out of Pisa, or their 
persons seized. Nino, hearing this, and not seeing any 
means of defending himself, retired to Calci, his castle, and 
formed an alliance with the Florentines and people of Lucca, 
against the Pisans. The Count, before Nino was gone, in 
order to cover his treachery, when every thing was settled 
for his expulsion, quitted Pisa, and repaired to a manor of 
his called Settimo ; whence, as soon as he was informed of 
Ninons departure, he returned to Pisa with great rejoicing 
and festivity^ and was elevated to the supreme power with 
every demonstration of triumph and honor. But his great- 
ness was not of long continuance. It pleased the Almighty 
that a total reverse of fortune should ensue, as a punish- 
ment for his acts of treachery and guilt ; for he was said to 
have poisoned the Count Anselmo da Capraia, his sister's 
son, on account of the envy and fear excited in his mind by 
the high esteem In which the gracious manners of Anselmo 
were held by the Pisans. The power of the Guelphi being 
so much diminished, the Archbishop devised means to be- 
tray the Count Ugolino, and caused him to be suddenly at- 
tacked in his palace by the fury of the people, whom he had 
exasperated, by telling them that Ugolino had betrayed Pisa, 
and given up their castles to the citizens of Florence and of 
Lucca. He was immediately compelled to surrender; his 
bastard son and his grandson fell in the assault ; and two of 
his sons, with their two sons also, were conveyed to prison." 
O. rUUni, lib. vU. c. cxx. 

' In the following March, the Pisans, who had imprisoned 
the Count Ugolino, with two of his sons and two of his 
grandchildren, the offspring of his son the Count Guelfo, in 
& tower on the Piazza of the Anzlani, caused the tower to be 
locked, the key thrown into the Arno, and all food to be 
withheld flrom them. In a few days they died of hunger ; 
but the Count first with loud cries declared his penitence, 
snd yet neither priest nor firiar was allowed to shrive him 
Ail the five, when dead, were dragged out of the prison, and 
Jieaniy interred ; and fh>m thenceforward the tower was 
called the tower of &mine, and so shall ever be." Jbid^ 
:. cxxvii. Proya asserts that Dante, for the sake of poetiral 
^fl^ct, has much misrepresented the real facts See hia 


Ruggieri. Why I neighbor him so close, 
Now list. That through effect of hia ill thoughts 
In him my trust reposing, I was ta'en 
And after murdered, need is not I tell. 
What therefore thou canst not have heard, that is, 
How cruel was the murder, shalt thou hear, 
And know if he have wrong'd me. A small grate 
Within that mew, which for my sake the name 
Of famine bears, where others yet must pine. 
Already through its opening several moons' 
Had shown me, when I slept the evil sleep 
That from the future tore the curtain off. 
This one, methought, as master of the sport, 
Rode forth to chase the gaunt wolf, and his wheljie, 
Unto the mountain' which forbids the sight 
Of Lucca to the Pisan. With lean brachs 
Inquisitive and keen, before him ranged 
Lanfranchi with Sismondi and Gualandi. 
After short course the father and the sons 
Seem'd tired and lagging, and methought I saw 
The sharp tusks gore their sides. When I awoke. 
Before the dawn, amid their sleep I heard 
My sons (for they were with me) weep and ask 
For bread. Right cruel art thou, if no pang 
Thou feel at thinking what my heart foretold ; 
And if not now, why use thy tears to flow ? 
Now had they waken'd ; and the hour drew near 
When they were wont to bring us food ; the mind 
Of each misgave him through his dream, and I 
Heard, at its outlet underneath lock'd up 
The horrible tower : whence, uttering not a word 
I look'd upon the visage of my sons. 
I wept not : so all stone I felt within.* 

Veltro Allegorico di Dante. Ed. 1896, p. S8, 9. This wonid 
render a conjecture, which the same writer elsewhere haz* 
ards, BtUl more improbable ; that the story might have been 
wntten by Dante when the facts were yet recent, and after- 
wards introduced into his poem Jbid., p. 96. 

Chancer has briefly told Ugolino's story. See B1onke*i 
Tale, Hugeline of Pise. 

1 Several moone.] Vlany editions, and the greater part of 
ihe MSS., instead of " piu Inne,*' read " piu lome ;** according 
to which reading Ugolino would say, that the day had broke, 
and shone thioiigh the grated window of the prison, before 
he fell asleep. 

s Unto the mountain.] The mountain 8. GinUano Iwtwera 
Pisa and Lucca. 

* J9U stone I felt within.\ '* My heart is turnM to stone ; I 
irike it, and it hurts my hand.*' Shake., Othello, act iv. sc 1 

ie-79 HELL, Canto XXXTTT. gifi 

They wept : and one, my little Anselm, crie i, 
' Thou lookest so ! Father, what ails thee V Yet 
I shed no tear, nor answer'd all that day 
Nor the next night, until another sun 
Came out upon the world. When a faint beam 
Had to our doleful prison made its way, 
And in four coontenances I descried 
The image of my own, on either hand 
Through agony I bit ; and they, who thought 
I did it through desire of feeding, rose 
O' the sudden, and cried, * Father, we should grieve 
' Far less, if thou wouldst oat of us : thou gayest* 
' These weeds of miserable flesh we wear ; 
' And do thou strip them off from us again.' 
Then, not to make them sadder, I kept down 
My spirit in stillness. That day and the next 
We all were silent. Ah, obdurate earth ! 
Why open'dst not upon us 7 Whsn we came 
To the fourth day, then Gaddo at my feet 
Outstretched did fling him, crying, * Hast no help 
' For me, my father !' There he disd ; and e'en 
Plainly as thou seest me, saw I the three 
Fall one by one 'twixt the fifth day and tixth : 
Whence I betook me, now grown blind, to grope 
Oyer them all, and for three days aloud 
Call'd on them who were dead. Then, fasting got 
The mastery of grief." Thus haying spoke, 
Once more upon the wretched skull his teeth 
He fastened like a mastiff's 'gainst the bone, 
Firm and unyielding. Oh, £ou Pisa ! sham? 
Of all the people, who their dwelling make 
In that fair region,^ where the Italian yoice 

1 Tkou gavest.] 

Tu ne vestisti 
Qneste misere cami, e tu le spogUa 

Imitated by FUlcaja, Canz. iii. 

Di questa Imperial cadaca iipogl'A 
To, Signer, me vestisti e tn mi e |K)glia : 
Ben puol U Regno me tor ta che me '1 destL 

And by Maffei in the Merope : 

Tu diflciogleste 
Clneste misere membra e ta le annodL 
/» that fair rejgion.} 

Del bel paese li, doye U si snona. 
Italy, as explained by Dante himself, in his treatise IX 
Vulg. Eloq., lib. i. oap. 8. ** dni anteni Si dicnnt a praedietiM 
finibns (JanaenBinm) Orientalem (Meridionalis £niop« par* 
tem) tenent; yidelicet usqne ad promontoriom iUad Italia 
loa tinns Adxiatid maris inciplt et Siciliamu" « 

fllO THE VISION. «v.llC 

Is heard ; since that thy neighbors are so slack 

To punish, from their deep foundations rise 

Capraia and Gorgona/ and dam up 

The mouth of Arno ; that each soul in thee 

May perish in the waters. What if fame 

Reported that thy castles were betrayM 

By Ugolino, yet no right hadst thou 

To stretch his children on the rack. For theiOy 

Brigata, Uguccione, and the pair 

Of genUe ones, of whom my song hath told, 

Their tender years, thou modem Thebes, did make 

Uncapable of guilt. Onward we pass'd, 

Where others, skarf 'd in rugged folds of ice, 

Not on their feet were tum'd, but each reyersed. 

There, very weeping suffers not to weep f 
For, at their eyes, grief, seeking passage, finds 
Impediment, and rolling inward turns 
For increase of sharp anguish : the first tears 
Hang cluster'd, and like crystal vizors show. 
Under the socket brimming all the cup. 

Now though the cold had from my face dislodged 
Each feeling, as *i were callous, yet me seem'd 
Some breath of wind I felt. " Whence cometh this,'* 
Said I, ** my Master? Is not here below 
All vapor quench*d?" — " Thou shalt be speedily," 
He answer'd, "where thine eyes shall tell thee 
The cause descrying of this airy shower." [whencoi 

Then cried out one, in the chill crust who moum'd : 
" O souls ! so cruel, that the farthest post 
Hath been assign'd you, from this face remove 
The harden'd veil ; that I may vent the grief 
Impregnate at my heart, some little space, 
Ere it congeal again." I thus replied : 
" Say who thou wast, if thou wouldst have mine aid \ 
And if I extricate thee not, far down 
As to the lowest ice may I descend." 

" The friar Alberigo,"' answer'd he, 

X Capraia and Oorgona.'\ Small islands near the moatii of 
the Arno. 

* TherBf very wuping n^era not to veep.] 

Lo pUuito stesso li pianger non lascia. 
So Giusto de* Conti. Bella Mano. Son. ** Qaanto U cleL** 
Che 11 troppo pianto a me pianger non lasio. 

* The friar JUberigo.] Alberigo de' Manfredl of Faensa 
one of the Frati Godentl, Joyous Friars, who having qnar 
lelled with some of his brotherhood, under pretence m with 
Ing to be reconciled, invited them to a banquet, at the eoii 
clQsloii of which he called for the iVnlt, a signal for tliC 

ii7-iap HELL, Cakto XXXin. 217 

** Am I, who from the evil garden pluck'd 

Its fruitage, and am here repaid, the date' 

More luscious for my fig." — ** Hah !" I exolaun*d, 

" Art thoa too dead?"-— ^' How in the world oloft 

It fareth with my body," answer*d he, 

*' I am right ignorant Such privilege 

Hath Ptolomea,' that oft-times the soul* 

Drops hither, ere by Atropos divoiced. 

And that thou mayst wipe out more willingly 

The glazed tear-drop^ that overlay mine eyes. 

Know that the soul, that moment she betrays, 

As I did, yields her body to a fiend 

Who after moves and governs it at will, 

Till all its time be rounded : headlong she 

Falls to this cistern. And perchance above 

Doth yet appear the body of a ghost, 

Who here behind me winters. Him thou know^si 

If thou but newly art arrived below. 

The years are many that have pass'd away, 

Since to this fastness Branca Doria* came." 

" Now," answer'd I, ** methinks thou meekest me 
For Branca Doria never yet hath died, 
But doth all natural functions of a man, 

assassins to rash in and dispatch those whom he had mnrkc-d 
for destruction. Hence, adds Landino, it is said proverbially 
(rf'one who has been stabbed, that he has had some of the 
Griar Alberigo's fruit 
Thus Pulci, Morg. Magg., c. xzv. 

Le firutte amare di frate Alberico. 

1 ThedaU.] 

Come Dio rende dataro per fico. 

fhzio degli XJherth Dittamondo^ I. iv. cap. xix. 

3 Ptclomea.] This circle is named Ptolomea from Ptolemy 
the son of Abnbus, by whom Simon and his sons were mur~ 
dered, at a great banquet he had made for them. See 1 Mac- 
cabees ch> z^t Or from Ptolemy, king of £g)'pt, the be- 
trayer of Pompey the Great 

* T%e «««/.] Chaucer seems to allude to this in the Frcre's 
lUe, where a fiend assamet the person of a yeoman, and 
tells the Bomunoor that he shall one day come to a place 
arheiB he shall understand the mystery of such possessions. 

Bet than l^igUe, while 1m was on live. 
Or Dant also. 

See Mr. Soathey*8 Tale of Donlca. 

* Tkeglaud iear-4ropa.'\ 

~— ■ sorrow^s eye, glazed with blinding lears. 

Shakspeare, Rich. ILt act ii. sc. & 

* Branca Doria.] The family of Doria was possessed of 
;rreat influence in Genoa. Branca is said to have murdered 
'lis father-in-ltw, Michel Zanche, introduced in Canto xxii. 


218 THE VISION. 110-155 

Eats, drmksi and s'^eps,^ and putteth raiment qd " 

He thus : " Not yet unto that upper foss 
By th' evil talons guarded, where the pitch 
Tenacious boils, had Michel Zanche reach'd, 
When this one left a demon in his stead 
In his own body, and of one his kin. 
Who with him treachery wrought. But now put fotith 
Thy hand, and ope mine eyes." I oped them not 
11! manners were best courtesy to him. 

Ah Genoese ! men perverse in every way, 
With every foulness stam'd, why from the earti) 
Are ye not cancelPd ? Such an one of yours 
I with Romagna's darkest spirit' found. 
As, for his doings, even now in soul 
Is in Cocytus plunged, and yet doth seem 
In body still alive upon the earth. 



to the fourth and last roand of the ninth circle, those who 
have betrayed their benefactors are wholly covered with 
ice. And in the midst is Lucifer, at whose back Dante 
and Virgil ascend, till by a secret path they reach the tur- 
face of the other hembphere of the earth, and once more 
obtain sight of the stars. 

" The banners' of Hell's Mon£U*ch do come forth 
Toward us ; therefore look," so spake my guide, 
'* If thou discern him." As, when breathes a clou J 
Heavy and dense, or when the shades of night 
Fall on our hemisphere, seems view'd from far 
A windmill,^ which the blast stirs briskly round r 
Such was the fabric then methought I saw. 

To shield me from the wind, forthwith I drew 
Behind my guide : no covert else was there. 

1 Eats, drinks, and sleeps.} 

But 'tis a spirit. 

Pro. No, wench, it eats and sleeps, and hath such senses 
As we have, such Shakspeare, Tempest, act i. sc. 3. 

s Rotnogna^s darkest spirit.} The friar Alberigo. 
■ The banners.} 

Vexilla regis prodeunt infemi. 

K. parody of the first verse in a hymn that was sung by tlw 
church in praise of the cross. 

« A windmiU.} The author of the Caliph Vathek, In the 
antes to that tale, justly observes that it is more than probft- 
jle that Don Quixote's mistake of the windmills Ibr giantr 
vns sRKSested to Cervantes by this simile. 

Mh37. HELL, Camto XXXIV. 219 

Now came I (and with fear I bid my strain 
Record the marvel) where the souIb were all 
Whelm'd mideraeath, transparent, as through glaw 
Pellucid the frail stem. Some prone were laid ; 
Others stood upright, this upon the soles, 
That on his head, a third with face to feet 
Arch'd like a bow. When to the point we came. 
Whereat my guide was pleased that I should see 
The creature eminent in beauty once, 
He from before me stepp'd and made me pause. 

" Lo !" he exclaim'd, ** lo Dis ; and lo the place, 
Where thou hast need to arm thy heart with strengtli ^ 

How frozen and how faint I then became. 
Ask me not, reader ! for I write it not ; 
Since words would fail to tell thee of my state 
I was not dead nor living.' Think thyself. 
If quick conception work in thee at all. 
How I did feel. That emperor, who sways 
The realm of sorrow, at mid breast from the ice 
Stood forth ; and I in stature am more like 
A giant,' than the giants are his arms. 
Mark now how great that whole must be, which suitti 
With such a part. If he were beautiful 
As he is hideous now, and yet did dare 
To scowl upon his Maker, well from him 
May all our misery flow. Oh what a sight ! 
How passmg strange it seem'd, when I did spy 
Upon his head three faces ;* one in front 

> / was not dead nor livinjr.'] 

oCr* h rciis ^Oi/i/foi ;, 

oifr' iv ^tSffiv ipiOftovitfvti, 

Eur^ides, Supplicett v. 079, Markland'ii edit 

tarn ibi me nescio qois arrii^t 

Timidam atqae pavidam, nee vivam nee moitaaD> 

PlautuSf CarculiOf act v. 8C. 9 
■ wf fimU.] 

Nel prime clima sta come signore 
Ck>Ui giganti ; ed nn delle sue braccie 
Piu che nallo di lore i assal maggiore- 

f^mit tt Quadrir.y lib. ii. cap. i. 

' T%ree faee$.'\ It can scarcely ue doubted bnt that Miltor. 
derived his description of Satan, in those lines — 

Each passion dimm*d his fkce 

Thrice changed with pale ire, envy and despair. 

P. Z,., b. iv. 144. 

Irom this passage, coupled with the remark of Vellntello 
npon it: **The nrat of these sins is anger, which he signifies 
by the red fiice ; the second, represented by that between 
pale and yellow, is envy, and not, as others have said, avarice 

N>^ 220 THE VISION. 38-4(1 

Ofjhue vennilion, the other two with this 
^ ^ Midway each shoulder join'd and at the cresi ; 

The riffht 'twixt wan and yellow seem'd ; the left 
^ ^ To look on, Buch as come from whence ok Nile 

Stoops to the lowlands. Under each shot forth 
Two mighty wings, enormous as became 
A bird so vast Sails' never sucn I saw 
Outstretched on the wide sea. No plumes had they. 
But were in texture like a bat f and these 

&nd the third, denoted by the black, is a melancholy hnnioi 
that causes a man*8 Vhonghts to-be darlc and evil, and avei^ 
firom all Joy and tmnquilUty.** 

Lombardi would understand the three faces to signify the 
three parts of the world then known, in all of which Lucifei 
had his subjects : the red denoting the Europeans, who were 
in the middle ; the yellow, the Asiatics, on the right; and the 
black, the Africans, who were on the left; according to the 
position of the faces themselves. 

1 SaiU.] 

Argo non ebbe mai si grande vela, 
Ne altra nave, come l*all sue ; 
Ne mal tessuta fu si grande tela. 

Frntiy 11 Quadnr.^ lib. ii. cap. XiX. 

His sail-broad vans 

He spreads for flight. 

MUton, P. Z.., b. ii. 927. 

Compare Spenser, F. Q,., b. i. c. xi. st. 10; Ben Jonson's 
Every Man out of his Humor, v. 7 ; and Fletcher's Prophetess, 
act 2, scene 3. 

In his description of Satan, Frezzl has departed not leu 
from Dante than our own poet has done ; for he has painted 
him on a high throne, with a benignant and glad counte- 
nance, yet ftall of majesty, a triple crown on his head, six 
shining wings on his shoulders, and a court thronged With 
giants, centaurs, and mighty captains, besides youths and 
damsels, who are disporting in the neighboring meadows 
with song and dance ; but no sooner does Minerva, who is 
the author's conductress, present her crystal shield, than aH 
this triumph and Jollity is seen through it transformed into 
loathsomeness and horror. There are many touches in this 
picture that will remind the reader of Milton. 

* Like a bat.] The description of an imaginary being, who 
Is called Typhurgo, in the Zodiaeut FiUe, has somethii^ verf 
Pke this of Dante's Lucifer. 

Ingentem vldi regem, ingentlque sedentem 
In solio, crines flammantl stemmate cinctum, 

— : utrinque patenies 

Alae hnmeris mognc, quales vespertllionum 

Membranis contexts ampUs— • 

Nndos erat longis sed opiBrtos corpora villis. 

M. Palingeniij Zod. Vil^ lib is 

A mighty king I might disceme, 

Placed hie on loffy chaire, 
His haire with fyry garland deckt 

Pnft up in fiendish wise. 

17-iS. HELL, Cantx. XXXIV 93 1 

He flapp'd i' th' air, that from him iwued still 
Three winds, wherewith Cocytna to its depth 
Wae frozen. At six eyee he wept : the tears 
Adown three chins distiird with bloody foam. 
At every mouth his teeth a sinner champ'd, 
Braised as with ponderous engine ; so that three 
Were in this guise tormented. But far more 
Than from that gnawing, was the foremost pang*d 
By the fierce rending, whence oft-times the back 
Was stripp'd of all its skin. " That upper spirit, 
Who bath worst punishment," so spake my guide. 
** Is Judas, he that hath his head within 
And plies the feet without. Of th' other two, 
Whose heads are under, from the murky jaw 
Who hangs, is Brutus:' lo ! how he doth writhe 
And speaks not. The other, Cassius, that appeara 
So large of limb. But night now reascends ; 
And it is time for parting. All is seen.'* 

I clipped him round the neck ; for so he bade 
And noting time and place, he, when the wings 
Enough were oped, caught fast the shaggy sides. 
And down from pile to pile descending stepped 

Larige wings on him did grow 
Framde like the wings of ninder mice, Sec. 

BruttL»?i Landino struggles, but I fear in vain, tu ezlrl* 
eate Brutus from the unworthy lot which is here assigned 
him. He maintains, that by Brutus and Cassius are nol 
meant the individuals known by those names, but any who 
put a lawful monarch to death. Yet if Cesar was such, the 
conspirators might be regarded as deserving of their doom. 

** O nomini eccellenti !** exclaims the commentator, with a 
s]ririt beebming one who felt that he lived in a free state, 
** ed al tatto degni a quail Roma foase patria, e de' qnali res 
Vetk sempre etema memoria ; legginsi tntte le leggi di qua 
loBque repnblica bene instituta, e troveremo che a nessiuio 
si propose roagglor premio che a chl uccide il tlranno.*' Cow- 
ley, as conspicuous for his loyalty as for his genius, in an ode 
Inscribed with the name of this patriot, which, though not 
free from the usual faults of the poet, is yet a noble one, ha** 
placed his character in the right point of view— 


Excellent Brutus ! of all human race 

The best, till nature was improved by grace. 

If Dante, however, believed Brutus to have been actnafetf 
by evil motives hi putting Caesar to death, the excellence of 
the patriot's cluuaeter in other respects would only have 
aggravated his guilt in that particular. *' Totins antem i::* 
jastltto nulla capltalior est quam eorum, qui cum maximo 
Idlvat Id acont, ut virl booi esse videantur.** O ile Of» 
lU, 1. cap. zm. 


Between the thick fell and the jagged ice. 

Soon as he reach'd the point, whereat the tliig'h 
Upon the swelluig of the haunches turns. 
My leader tliere, with pain and struggling hard, 
Tum'd round his head where his feet stood before, 
A.nd grappled at the fell as one who mounts ; 
That into hell methought we tum'd again. 

" Expect that by such stairs as these," tiius spake 
The teacher, pantmg like a man forespent, 
'< We must depart from evil so extreme :*' 
Then at a rocky opening issued forth, 
A.nd placed me on the brink to sit, next join'd 
With wary step my side. I raised mine eyes. 
Believing that I Lucifer should see 
Where he was lately left, but saw him now 
With legs held upward. Let the grosser sort, 
Who see not what the point was I had pass*d, 
Bethink them if sore toil oppress^ me then. 

" Arise," my master cried, " upon thy feet 
The way b long, and much uncouth the road ; 
And now within one hour and half of noon* 
The sun returns." It was no palace-hali 
Lofty and luminous wherein we stood. 
But natural dungeon where ill-footing was 
And scant supply of light " Ere from the abysi' 
I separate," thus when risen I began : 
'* My guide ! vouchsafe few words to set me free 
From error's thraldom. Where is now the ice? 
How standeth he in posture thus reversed? 
And how from eve to mom m space so brief 
Hath the sun made hb transit?" He m few 
Thus answering spake : '* Thou deemest thou art still 
On the other side the centre, where I grasp'd 
The abhorred worm that boreth through the world. 
Thou wast on the other side, so long as I 
Descended ; when I tum'd, thou didst o'eipass 
That point,* to which from every part is dragg'd 
All heavy substance. Thou art now arrived 
Under the hemisphere opposed to that, . 

1 fVitkin oju hour and half oj noon.] 'Vhe Poet lues the 
Hebrew manner of compating the dav» according to which 
the third hour answers to our twelve oxIocIe at noon. 

• That point.\ Monti observes, that if this passage had 
chanced to meet the eye of Newton, it might better have 
SA'akened his thought to conceive the system of attraction, 
ihan the accidental fkUlng of an apple. PropoHtu v.MLp^9 
K IxxviU. 8». 1824. 

106-133. HELL, Canto XXXI V. 228 

Which the great continent dota ovenpiead, 

And underneath whose canopy expired 

The Man that was bom sinless, and so Uved. 

Thy feet are planted on the smallest sphere, 

Whose other aspect is Judecca. Mom 

Here rises, when there evening sets : and he, 

Whose shaggy pile we scaled, yet standeth flx'd. 

As at the firat On this part he fell down 

From heaven ; and th' earth, here prominent before 

Through fear of him did veil her with the sea. 

And to our hemisphere retired. Perchance, 

To shun him, was the vacant space left here. 

By what of firm land on this side appears,^ 

That sprang aloof." There is a place beneath. 

From Belzebub as distant, as extends 

The vaulted tomb f discovered not by sight. 

But by the sound of brooklet, that descends 

This way along the hollow of a rock. 

Which, 9S it winds with no precipitous course. 

The wave hath eaten. By that hidden way 

My guide and I did enter, to return 

To the fair worid : and heedless of repose 

We climb'd, he first, I following his steps. 

Till on our view the beautiful lights of heaven 

Dawn'd through a circular opening in the cave : 

Thence issuing we again beheld the stars. 

^ By vhat affirm laud on this tide appears.] The mooii 
tain of Pnigatory. 

3 The vomited tomi.\ ** La tomba.*' This word is \i9e«l to 
ifpress the yrtuAe de|)th of the inliBnial icglou. 





rhti roet describes tbe delight he experienced at issuing u 
Utiio liefore dawn from the infernal regions, into the pmu 
air that rarroonds the isle of Pnrgatory ; and then relates 
how, tnming to the right, he beheld four stars never seen 
before but by our first parents, and met on his left the 
shade of Cato of Utica, who, having warned him and Vir- 
gil what Is needlhl to be done before they proceed on their 
way through Purgatory, disappears; and the two poets 
go towards the shore, where Virgli cleanses Dante*i fece 
with the dew, and girds him with a reed, as Cato had com- 

O'bk better waves' to speed her rapid course 
The light bark of my genius lifts the sail, 
Well pleased to leave so cruel sea behind ; 
And of that second region will I sing, 
In which the human spirit from sinful blot 
Is purged, and for ascent to Heaven prepares. 

Here, O ye hallow'd Nme ! for in your train 
I follow, here the deaden'd strain revive ; 
Nor let Calliope refuse to sound 
A. somewhat higher song, of that loud tone 

1 O'er heUer wavet.] SoBeml. Oil. Inn., lib. U e. L 
Per correr maggior acqua aiza le vele, 
O debil navicella del mio ingegnc 

aoe 'x^HE vISlo^ ji-35 

Which when the wretched hbds of chattermg no»e' 
Had heard, they of forgiveness lost all hope. 

Sweet hue of eastern sapphire, that was spreaii 
O'er the serene aspect of the pure a:?, 
High up as the first circle,^ to mine eyee 
Unwonted joy rcnew'd, soon as I 'scaped 
Forth from the atmosphere of deadly gloom, 
That had mine eyes and bosom fiU'd with grriof. 
The radiant planet,' that to love invites. 
Made all the orient laugh,* and veiled beneath 
The Pisces' light,* that in his escort came. 

To the right hand I tum'd, and fix'd my mind 
On the other pole attentive, where I saw 
Four stars' ne'er seen before save by the ken 
Of our first parents.^ Heaven of their rays 

1 Birds of chattering note.i For the fable of the daughters 
of Pierns, who challenged the muses to sing, and were by 
them changed into magpies, see Ovid, Met, lib. y. fab. 5. 

s 7%e first eirele.} Either, as some suppose, the moon ; 
or. as Lombard! (who likes to be as far off the rest of the com- 
mentators as possible) will have it, the highest circle of the 


* Planet.] Venus. 

* Made all the orient laugh.] Hence Chaucer, Knight*8 Tale 

And all the orisont laugheth of the sight. 
It is sometimes read '* orient*' 

B The Pieces* light.] The constellation of the Fish veiled 
by the more luminous body of Venus, then a morning star. 

" Jbier stars.] Venturi observes that " Dante here speaks 
as a poet, and almost in the spirit of prophecy ; or, what L? 
more likely, describes the heaven aliout that pole according 
to his own invention. In our days," he adds, " the cross, 
composed of four stars, three of the second and one of the 
third magnitude, serves as a guide to those who sail from 
Europe to the south ; but in the age of Dante these discove- 
ries had not been made ;*' yet it appears prolmble, tlutt either 
from Ions tradition, or from the relation of later voyagers, the 
real truth might not have been unknown to our Poet Sena 
ea*s prediction of the discovery of America may be accounted 
for in a similar manner. But whatever may be thought 
of this, it is certain that the four stars are here symbolical 
of the four cardinal virtues. Prudence. Justice, r<Hrtitttd«, 
and Temperance. Bee Canto zzxi. v. 105. M. Artaud men 
tlons a globe constructed by an Arabian in Egypt, with the 
date of the y^ar 633 of the Hegira, corresponmng to 1383 
of our era, in ivhich the southern cross is positively mark- 
ed See his Histoire de Dante, ch. zxxl. and xl. 8*. Par 

V Our first parents.] In the terrestrial paradise, placed ta 
we shall tee, by our Poet, on the f-ammit of Purgatory 

W-50 PURGATORY, Canto 1 837 

Seem'd joyous. O thou northern site ! bereft 
Indeed, and widow'd, since of these deprived. 

As firom this view I had desisted, straight 
Turning a little towards the other pole, 
There from whence now the wain^ had disappeafdi 
I saw an old man^ standing by my side 
Alone, so worthy of reverence in his look. 
That ne'er from son to father more was owed. 
Low down his beard, and miz'd with hoary white 
Descended, like his locks, which, parting, fell 
Upon his breast in double fold. The beams 
Of those four luminaries on his face 
So brightly shone, and with such radiance clear 
Deck'd it, that I beheld him as the sun. 

" Say who are ye, that stemming the blind stream 
Forth from the eternal prison-house have fled V* 
He spoke and moved those venerable plumes.' 
" Who hath conducted, or with lantern sure 
Lights you emerging from the depth of night. 
That makes the infernal valley ever black? 
Are the firm statutes of the dread abyss 
Broken, or in high heaven new laws ordain'd, 
That thus, condemned, ye to my caves approach >*' 

My guide, then laying hold on me, by words 
And intimations given with' hand and head, 

^ 7%e wain.} Charles's Wain, or Bootes. 
3 ^n old man.'] Oito. 

Secretosque pios ; his dantem jura Catonem. 

Fir£r. JSEn., viii. 670. 

The commentators, and Lombard! among the rest, might 
have saved themselves and their readers much needless 
troable if they would have consulted the prose writings of 
Dante with more diligence. ' In the Convito, p. 311, he has 
himself declared his opinion of the illustrious Roman. 
** Quale uomo,** &c. ** What earthly man was more worthy 
to follow God than Cato? Certainly none." And again, 
p. 313: **Nei nome di cui," &c. " m whose name, what- 
ever needs be said concerning the signs of nobility may be 
concluded ; for, in him, that nobility displays them all through 
oat all ages.'* 

* Venerable plumes.] 

Insperata tua quum veniet plnma superbise. 

Hot. Carm^ lib. iv. ode 10. 

rhe same metaphor has occurred in Hell, Canto xx. v. 4L 

the plumes. 

That marked the better sex. 

[t is used by Ford in the Lady's Trial, act iv. sc. S 

Now the down 

Of soilness is exchanged for plumes of age- 

298 THE VISION. &1 Tj 

Made my bent knees and eye submusiTe pay 
Due reyerence ; then thus to him replied : 

" Not of myself I come ; a Dame from heaveu 
Descending, him besought me in my charge 
To bring. But since thy will implies, that more 
Our true condition I unfold at large, 
Mine is not to deny thee thy request 
This mortal ne'er hath seen the farthest gloom f 
But erring by his folly had approach'd 
bo near, that little space was loft to turn 
Then, as before I told, I was dispatch'd 
To work his rescue ; and no way remain'd 
Save this which I have ta'en. I have displayed 
Before him all the regi<»is of the bad ; 
And purpose now those spirits to display. 
That under thy conomand are purged from sin. 
How I have brought him would be long to say. 
From high descends the virtue, by whose aid 
I to thy sight and hearing him have led. 
Now may our coming please thee. In the seartb 
Of liberty he journeys : that how dear. 
They know wno for her sake have life refused. 
Thou knowest, to whom death for her was sweet 
In Utiea, where thou didst leave those weeds, 
That in the last great day will shine so bright. 
For us the etemtd edicts are unmoved : 
He breathes, and I of Minos am not bound,' 
Abiding in that circle, where the eyes 
Of thy chaste Marcia* beam, who still in look 

1 A Dame from heaven.] Beatrice. See Hell, 11. 54. 

s 7^0 farthest gloom.] L*altlma sera. 

Qo Ariosto, O. F., canto xxxiv. at. 59. 

Che non ban vlsto ancor Tultiina sera. 

And FlUcaJa, canto iz. Al Sonno. 
L^ultlma sera. 

And Mr. Mathias, Canzone a GugUelmo Roscoe orenoessa ^.'l^ 
Storia della Poesla Italiana, p. 13. 

Dl morte non vedr& rnltlma sera. 

J Of Minoa am not bound.] See Hell, v. 4. 

* Mareia.] 

—— Da foBdera priaci 
niibata tori : da tantnm nomen inane 
Connabil : liceat tnmulo scripslsse, Catonis 
Martla. Lncan, Pharo., lib. ii. 344 

Our aiithor*8 habit of patting an allegorical interpretatiita 
on every thing, a habit which appears to have descended lu 
that age flrom certain fathers of the chorch, Is nowhere 
more apparent than in his explanation of this passage. Sec 
Convlto, p. Sll, "Mania fa veigine,** aec. *'lfarcia «*nt a 


8»-lfle. PURGATORY, Camto 1. 22B 

Prays thee, O hallow'd spirit ! to own her thine. 
Then by her love we implore thee, let us pass 
llirough thy seven regions ;^ for which, best thanli» 
I for thy favor wilt to her return, 
If mention there below thou not disdain/' 

*< Marcia so pleasing in my sight was founds' 
IFe then to him rejoin^, " while I was there. 
That all she askM me I was fain to grant 
Now that beyond tlie accursed stream she dwellH, 
She may no longer move me, by that law,' 
Which was ordain'd me, when I .esued thence. 
Not so, if Dame from heaven, as thou sayst. 
Moves and directs thee ; then no flattery needs. 
Enough for me that in her name thou ask. 
Go therefore now : and with a slender reed* 
See tl^at thou duly gird him, and his face 
Lave, till all sordid stain thou wipe from thenoe. 
For not with eye, by any cloud obscured, 
Would it be seenily before him to come,* 
Who stands the foremost minister in heaven. 
This islet all around, there far beneath. 
Where the wave beats it, on the oozy bed 
Produces store of reeds. No other plant, 
Cover'd with leaves, or hardened in its stalk. 
There lives, not bending to the water's sway. 
After, this way return not ; but the sun 
Will show you, that now rises, where to take^ 
The mountain in its easiest ascent.'* 

He disappear'd ; and I myself upraised 

virgin, and in that state she signifies childhood ; then s'ne 
came to Cato, and in that state, she represents yoath ; she 
then bare children, by whom are represented the virtues thai 
we have aaid'lielong to that age.** Dante would surely have 
done well to remomber his own rule laid down in the De 
Monarch., lib. iil. ** Advertendum, &c.** "Concerning the 
mystical sense it must be observed that we may err in two 
\vay», either by seeing it where it is not, or by taking it other- 
urlse than it ought to be taken.'* 

> T^ovgh thv seven regions.] The seven rounds of Pur- 
gatory, in which the seven capital sins are punbhed. 

s Bf that law.\ When he was delivered by Christ fVom 
iimbo, a change of affections accompanied his change of 

* A slender reed.\ The reed is here supposed, with suffi- 
cient prolability, to be meant for a type of Bimplidty and 

* When is iake^ "Prendere il monte,'* a readlcg which 
Lombaidi claims for his fkvorite Nidobeatina edition, is also 
found in Landino*8 of 1481. 


930 THE VISION 109 lit 

SpoechlesBy and to my guide retiring dose. 
Toward him turned mine eyes. He thus began * 
" My son ! observant thou my steps pursue. 
We must retreat to rearward ; for that way 
The champain to its low extreme declines." 

The dawn had chased the matin hour »f prime. 
Which fled before it, so that from afar 
I spied the trembling of the ocean streaix.* 

We traversed the deserted plain, as one 
Who, wander'd from his track, thinks every step 
Trodden in vain till he regain the path. 

When we had come, where yet the tender dew 
Strove with the sun, and in a place where fresh 
The wind breathed o*er it, while it slowly dried ; 
Both hands extended qa the watery grass 
My master placed, in graceful act and kind. 
Whence I, of his intent before apprized, 
Stretch'd out to him my cheeks suffused with teatp 
There to my visage he anew restored 
That hue which the dun shades of hell concealed 

Then on the solitary shore arrived, 
That never sailing on its waters saw 
Man that could after measure back, his course. 
He girt me in such manner as had pleased 
Him who instructed ; and O strange to tell ' 
As he selected every humble plant. 
Wherever one was pluck'd, anothei^ there 
Resembling, straightway in its place aroso 



rhey behold a vessel under conduct of an angel, comiii| 
over the waves with spirits to Puqntory, among whoa, 
when the passengers have landed, Dante recognises his 
friend Casella; but, while they are entertained by hiui 
with a song, they hear Cato exclaiming against their nedSf 
gent loitering, and at that rebuke hasten forwards to tiie 

1 J tpM tki trembling of the ocean stream.'} 
Conobbl 11 tremolar della maiina. 
io Trissino in the Sofonisba. 

£ resta in tremolar Tonda mailna. 
iud Fortigoemt, Rlcdardetto, canto ix. st 17. 
' visto 11 tremolar della mailiiB. 
« Jinotker.} From Vhrg. JEn., lib. vL 148 
Prime avolso non deficit aHer. 

<-«i PURGATORY, Canto II. 231 

Now hdd the Bun^ to that horizoo reached, 
That covere, with the most exalted pouit 
Of its mcridiau circle, Salem's walls ; 
And night, that opposite to him her orb 
Rounds, from the stream of Ganges issued foitli, 
Holding the scales,* that from her hands are dro|^iM 
When she reigns highest :* so that where I was, 
Aurora's white and vermeil-tinctured cheek 
To orange tum'd^ as she in age increased. 

Meanwhile we Imger'd by the water's brink.- 
Like men,* who, musing on their road, in thought 
Journey, while motionless the body rests. 
When lo ! as, near upon the hour of dawn. 
Through the thick yapors' Mars with fiery beam 
Glares down in west, over the ocean floor ; 
So seem'd, what once again I hope to view, 
A light, so swiftly commg through the sea, 
r<ro winged course might equal its career. 
From which when for a space I had withdrawn 
Mine eyes, to make inquiry of my guide, 
Again I look'd, and saw it grown in size 
And brightness : then on either side appear'd 
Somethmg, but what I knew not, of bright hue, 
And by degrees from underneath it came 
Another. My preceptor silent yet 

JWw had the ran.] Dante was now antipodal to Jenisa- 
.em ; so that while the snn was setting with respect to that 
place, which he sapposes to l>e the middle of the inhabited 
earth, to him It was rising. See Roath's Reliqnlie Sarro» 
tom. ill. p. 230. 
So Fazio degli Ubertl, Dittamondo, lib. vi. cap. vi 

— — qaesto monte ^ qaello 
Ch* in mezzo 11 mondo aponto si divisa. 

s 7%e teales.] The constellation Libra. 

* When she reigiu hijrhsst.] "anando soverchla*' is (ac 
cording to Ventnn, whom I have followed) ** when the au 
tumnal equinox is passed.*' Lombard! supposes It to mean 
"when the nights begin to increase, that is, after the snnv 
mer solstice.** 

* To orange tMrn'd,] "L*aarora gift dl vermlglia comin- 
eiava aTOressandosi il sole a diveiUr rancla." Boccaccio, 
Decam., G. 111., at the beginning. See notes to Hell, zxiii. 101 

* Like m«n.] Che va col cuore e col corpo dinora. 

Bo Frezzi : 

E mentre 11 corpo posa, col cor varca 

Jl Qiuu^rtr., lib. iv. cap. S 

* Tkravgh the- thick vmwn.] So in the Convito; p. 73. 
** Esso pare, 4dc.*' ** He (Man) appears more or less lonamcd 
With heat, according to the thickness or rarity of the v^porf 
fiiBt follow him.'* 

232 THE \iS10N. aw< 

Stood, while the brightness, that we first diflceni'd« 
Open'd the form of wmgs : then when he knew 
The pilot, cried aloud, " Down, down ; bend low 
Thy knees ; behold God's angel : fold thy hands 
Now shalt thou see true mmisters indeed. 
Lo ! how all human means he sets at naught ; 
So that nor oar he needs, nor other sail 
Except his wings,' between such distant shores. 
Lo ! how straight up to heaven he holds them lear'd 
Winnowing the aii^ with those eternal plumes. 
That not like mortal hairs fall off or change." 

As more and more toward us came, more brighl 
Appeared the bird of God, nor could the eye 
Endure his splendor near : I mine bent down 
He drove ashore in a small bark so swift 
And light, that in its course no wave it drunk. 
The heavenly steersman at the prow was seen. 
Visibly written Blessed in his looks. 
Within, a hundred spirits and more there sat 

« In Exitu" Israel de Egypto," 
All with one voice togetlier sang, with what 
fn the remainder of that hymn is writ. 
Then soon as with the sign of holy cross 
He bless'd them, they at once leap'd out on land 
He, swiftly as he came, returned. The crew. 
There left, appear'd astounded with the place, 
Gazing around, as one who sees new sights. 

From every side the sun darted his beams, 
And with his arrowy radiance^ from mid heaven 

^ Exe^t his foinga.l Hence Milton : 

Who after came from earth, sailing arrived 
Waited by angels. P. L., b. iii. ver. 531 

9 JVinnotoing the Mr."] 

Trattando Taere con Teterne penne. 
9r Filicaja, canz. vili. st 11. 

Ma trattar Taere coll* eteme plume 

8 In Exitu.] " When Israel came out of Egj'pt.** Ps. cxlv 

* With his arrowy radianes.] So Milton : 

and now went forth the mom : 

from before her vanished night, 

Shot through with orient beams. P. Zh, b. vi. ver. la 

This has been regarded by some critics as a conceit, intc 
vhich Milton was betrayed by the Italian poets ; bnt it is in 
Tuth anthorized by one of the correctest of the Grecians. 

"Ov aUXa vh^ ivapi^oniva 

rtKTtt, Kattvvd^et re, <p\oyt^6iitvev 

'AXioi'. Sophocles^ jyaekin^\H*^ 

5S-m, PURGATORY Canto II. 933 

Had chased the Capricorn, when that strange trilje, 
Lifting their eyes toward us: "If ye know, 
Declare what path will lead us to the mount." 

Them Vbgil answered : <* Ye suppose, perchance 
Us well acquainted with this place : but here, 
We, as yourselves, are strangers. Not long erst 
We came, before you but a Uttle space. 
By other road so rough and hard, that now 
The ascent will seem to us as play." The spirits 
Who from my breathing had perceived I lived, 
Grew pale with wonder. As the multitude 
Flock round a herald sent with olive branch. 
To hear what news he brings, and in their haste 
Tread one another down ; e^en so at sight 
Of me those happy spirits were fix'd, each one 
Forgetful of its errand to depart 
Where, cleansed from sin, it might be made all fun 

Then one I saw darting before the rest 
With such fond ardor to embrace me, I 
To do the like was moved. O shadows vain ! 
Except in outward semblance : thrice my hands* 
I clasp'd behind it, they as oft retum'd 
Empty into my breast again. Surprise 
I need must think was painted in my looks. 
For that the shadow smiled and backward drew. 
To follow it I hastened, but with voice 
Of sweetness it enjoin'd me to desist. 
Tlien who it was I knew, and pray'd of it. 
To talk with me it would a little pause. 
It answered : " Thee as in my mortal frame 
I loved, so loosed from it I love thee still. 
And therefore pause: but why walkest thou here?" 

Ecco dinanzi a te fagge repente 
Saettata la notte. 

Marin*. Son. al Sig, dnthio Aldobrawmo. 

1 Thrice mfi hand$.'\ 

Ter conatus ibl eollo dare brachla elrcam, 
Ter fimstra comprenBa manus effagit Imago ; 
Par levUras ventis volucrique aimiUima somno. 

Virg. JEnn ii. 7d4. 

OoBpaie Homer, Od., xi. 305. 

Tlie Incident in the text is pleasantly allnded to In thai de 
Ightiiil book, the Capriccidel Botaio of Gelli, (Opere. Milan 
180S, V. 11. p. 960 of wUch there is an English translatim 
entitled **The Fearftill Fancies of the Flarentine Cooper 
Written In Toscane, by John Baptist Gelli, one of the fre< 
Btndie of Florence. And for recreation translated into Ens 
Jshb W. Barker.** 8». Z^d.. 1599. 


" Not without purpose once more to rotum, 
Tliou find'st me, my Casella,' where I am,' 
Journeying this way," I said : " but how of thee 
Hath so much time been lost?'" He answei*fl 
straight : 

" No outrage hath been done to me, if he,^ 
Who when and whom he chooses takes, hath oft 
Denied me passage here ; since of just will 
His will he makes. These three months past^ in- 
He, whoso chose to enter, with free leave [deed, 
Hath taken ; whence I wandering by the shore* 
Where Tiber's wave grows salt, of him gain'd kind 
Admittance, at that river's mouth, toward which 
His wings are pointed ; for there always throng 
All such as not to Acheron descend." 

Then I : "If new law taketh not from thee 
Memory or custom of love-tuned song, 

1 My Casella.\ A Florentine, celebrated for hU skill in 
music, "in whose company," says Landino, *' Dante often 
recreated his spirits, wearied by severer studies." See Dr. 
Bumey's History of Music, vol. ii. cap. iv. p. 333. MUton 
has a fine allusion to this meeting in his sonnet to Henrv 

Dante shall give fame leave to set thee higher 
Than his Casella, whom he wooed to sing. 
Met in the milder shades of Pnigatory. 

'<t Jfhere I am.] **IA dove io son." Lonibardl under* 
stands this differently: "Not without purpose to retnrn 
again to the earth, where I am: tliat is, where I usually 

3 Hath so much time been loH.] There is some vncertaintv 
in this passage. If we read 

Ma a te com* era tanta terra tolta 1 

with the Nidobeatina and Aldine editions, and many MSS., 
it signifies " Why art thou deprived of so desirable a region 
as that of Purgatory ? why dost thou not hasten to be cleansed 
of thy sins 1" If with the Academicians della Crosca, wit 

Diss Mo, ma a te come tant* ora 6 tolta 1 

whicn is not destitute of authority to support it, and which 
has the advantage over the other, as it marks Dante's 
speech from Oasella's, then it mubt mean as I have trans- 
lated it, ** Why hast thou lost so much time in arrlvinf 
nere 1" Lombardi, who is for the former reading, supposes 
Casella to be Just dead ; those who prefer the latter, sup- 
pose him to have been dead for some years, but now only Just 
an' /ed. 

* He,] The conducting angel. 

* 7%ete three months past.] Since the time of the Jubilee, 
Jnring which all spirits not condemned to eternal punbih 
tient were ^apposed to pass over tu Purgatory as soon aa thev 

■ Tfie ehore.] Ostia 

1(13-1526 PURGATORY, Cantu II. aSfr 

That whilom all my cares had power to saage ; 
Please thee therewith a little to console 
Afy spirit, that encumber'd with its fraice, 
Travelling so far, of pain is overcome." 

" Love, that discouises in my thoagrhts,'*' he theu 
Began in such soft accents, that within 
The sweetness thrills me yet. My gentle guide, 
And all who came with him, so well were pleased, 
That seem'd naught else might in their thoaghts 
have room. 

Fast fix'd in mute attention to his notes 
We stood, when lo I that old man venerable 
Exclaiming, " How is this, ye tardy spirits ? 
What negligence detains you loitering here 7 
Run to the mountain to cast off those scales. 
That from your eyes the sight of God conceaL" 

As a wild flock of pigeons, to their food 
Collected, blade or tares, without their pride 
Accustom'd, and in still and quiet sort, 
If aught alarm them, suddenly desert 
Their meal, assail'd by more important care ; 
So I that new-come troop beheld, the song 
Deserting, hasten to the mountain's side, 
As one' who goes, yet, where he tends, knows not 

Nor with less hurried step did we depart 



Ow Poet, perceiving do shadow except that cast by his own 
body, is fearftii that Viigil has deserted him; bat he is 
freed from tiiat error, and both .arrive together at the 
foot q€ the mountain: on flndhif it too steep to eUori), 
they inquire the way from a troop of sfdrits that am 
cooling towards tliem, and are liy them shown which is 
the easiest ascent. Manfredi, Icmg of Naples, who is 
one of these spirits, bids Dante inform his daa|hter 
Costanza, queen of Aragon, of the manner in which he 
had died. 

Thbs sudden flight had scattered o'er the plain, 
Tum'd towards the mourtain, whither reason's ^oice 

1 ** Lovtf that discourses in my thoughts "\ 

** Amor che nella mente mi ragiona.** 

The first verse of a canzone in the Convito of Dante, which 
He again cites in his treatise de Valg. Eloq., lib. iL cap. 6. 

* Jls one.] Com* uom, che va, ne sa dove liesca. 

Ck)me chi va, ni sa dove caonina. 

H Q^uadrir^ iib. i. cap 3. 

a36 THE VISION. d-3c 

Drives us: I, to my faithful company 
Adhering, left it not For how, of him 
Deprived, might I have sped? or who, beside, 
Would o'er the mountainous tract have led my ste^is 
He, with the bitter pang of self-remoise, 
Seem'd smitten. O clear conscience, and upright ; 
How doth a little failing wound thee sore.* 

Soon as his feet desii^ed (slackening pace) 
From haste, that piais all decency of act,' ' 

My mind, that in itself before was wrapt. 
Its thought expanded, as with joy restored ; 
And full against the steep ascent I set 
My face, where highest' to heaven its top o'erfloi^'s 

The sun, that flared behind, with ruddy beam 
Before my form was broken ; for in me 
His rays resistance met I tum'd aside 
With fear of being left, when I beheld 
Only before myself the ground obscured. 
When thus my solace, turning him around, 
Bespake me kindly: " Why distrustest thou? 
Believest not I am with thee, thy sure gruide? 
It now is evening there, where buried lies 
The body in which 1 cast a shade, removed 
To Naple(sf* from Brundusium's wall. Nor thou 
Marvel, if before me no shadow fall. 
More than that in the skyey element 
One ray obstructs not other. To endure 
Torments of heat and cold extreme, like frames 

1 Hoxo doth a little failing wound thee tore.] 
Ch' era al cor picciol fallo amaro morso. 

7)u50, O, X.., canto x. st. 99. 

s Zfiuto, that mars all deeenef of act.] Aristotle, la bis 
Phyiiog., e. ill., reckons It among the ipaiS«9s vnfiiitt **^^ 
■Ifns of an impudent man ;** that he is ip rats Kiv^n^iv^t^tt 
"quick in Us motions.** Compare Sophocles, Electn, 878. 

T) kSc/iiov luOtlva, 

Joy, my dear sister, wings my quick return, 

And with more speed than decency allows. PotUr, 

s ffhere hijheet] Lombardi proposes, with some heslta- 
tlon, a diflbrent meaning from that which has hlth«irto beea 
•Aud to the words, 

Che *nverso *1 ciel pid alto st dislaga; 

and would constme them, ** that raises itself higher than 
STery other mountain above She sea:" ^'sopm rallagaments 
lelle acqne del man.*' The conjecture Is at least laienioa^ 
and has obtained new Ibice by the aigomenls of Monti ta 

« 7b Miplea.'] Vixgil died at Branrfosinm, flom wbasv 
CVi body is said to have been removed to Naples. 

3J-00 PURGAltDRY. Cant) III ^3? 

That virtue hath disposed, which, how it « orkd^ 

Wills not to us should be reveal'd. Insaiie, 

Who h<q>e8 our reason may that space explore, 

Which holds three persons in one substance knit 

Seek not the wherefore, race of human kind ; 

Could ye have seen the whole, no need had been 

For Mary to bring forth. Moreover, ye 

Have seen such men desiring fruitlessly ;* 

To whose desires, repose would have been given. 

That now but serve them for eternal grief. 

I speak of Plato, and the Stagirite, 

And others many more." And then he bent 

Downwards his forehead, and in troubled mood' 

Broke off his speech. Meanwhile we had arrived 

Far as the mountain's foot, and there the rock 

Found of so steep ascent, that nimblest steps 

To climb it had been vain. The most remote, 

Most wild, untrodden path, in all the tract 

'Twixt Lerice and Turbia,* were to this 

A ladder easy and open of access. [clines ?" 

" Who knows on which hand now the steep de« 
[V(y master said, and paused ; " so that he may 
Ascend, who journeys without aid of wing?" 
And while, with looks directed to the ground, 
The meaning of the pathway^ he explored, 
And I gazed upward round the stony height ; 
On the left hand appeared to us a troop 
Of spirits, that toward us moved their steps ; 
Yet moving seem'd not, they so slow approach'd 

I thus my guide addressed : " Upraise thine eyes 

I DeniringfruiaeMly.^ See Hell, Canto iv. 39. 

3 In troubled mood.] Because he himself (Viifil) waa 
^mong the number of spirits who thus desired wlthovt 

' * T^izt Leriee and Thurhia.] At that time the two extre- 
mities of the Genoese republic ; the former on the east, the 
iHtter on the west A very ingenious writer has had occa- 
sion, for a diflerent purpose, to mention one of these places as 
remarkably secluded by its mountainous situation. " On an 
eminence among the mountains, between the two little etties, 
Nice and Monaco, is the village of Tcrbia, a name formed 
from the Greek rfitfvaca." Mitford on the lianuonf of Lam* 
^uage, sect. xv. p. 351. 2d edit. 

* 7%« iiMintii^ of thepatktoag,] Lombardi reads. 

— — tenea 1* vise basso, 
Esaminando del cammin la mente, 

lod explains it, " he bent down his face, his mind being occu 
|)ied with considering their way to ascend the moantaln.*' I 
loabt much whether the words can bear that construrtion. 

338 THE VISION. 6l-jn 

Lo ! that way some, of whom thou mayst obtam 
Counsel, if of thyself thou find'st it not." [plied 

Straightway he look'd, and with free speech re 
" Let us tend thither : they but softly come. 
And thou be firm in hope, my son beloved." 

Now was that crowd from us distant as far, 
(When we some thousand steps,' I say, had passed) 
As at a throw the nervous arm could fling ; 
When all drew backward on the massy crags 
Of the steep bank, and firmly stood unmoved, 
As one, who walks in doubt, might stand to look. 

** O spirits perfect ! O already chosen !" 
Virgil to them began : « by that blest peace. 
Which as I deem, is for you all prepared. 
Instruct us where the mountain low declines, 
So that attempt to mount it be not vain. 
For who knows most, him loss of time most grieves.** 

As sheep," that step from forth their fold, by one. 
Or pairs, or three at once ; meanwhile the rest 
Stand fearfully, bending the eye and nose 
To ground, and what the foremost does, that do 
The others, gathering round her if she stops. 
Simple and quiet, nor the cause discern ; 
So saw I moving to advance the first. 
Who of that fortunate crew were at the head. 
Of modest mien, and graceful m their gait. 
When they before me had beheld the light 
From my right side fall broken on the ground, 
So that the shadow reach*d the cave ; they stopp*di 
And somewhat back retired : the same did all 
Who follow'd, though unweeting of the causo 

" Unask'd of you, yet freely I confess. 
This is a human body which ye see. 
That the sun*s light is broken on the grouno, 
Marvel not : but believe, that not without 
Virtue derived from Heaven, we to climb 
Over this wall aspire." So them bespake 

1 JVhen w«Mome tktnuand »tep».\ Mr. Cariyie pals a query 
to my former translation of this passage, ft was certainly 

> JIa sheep.] The imitative nature of these animals sup* 
plies our Poet with another comparison, in his Convilo., p. St, 
''Qnesti sono da chiamare pecore," &c. "These may be 
tailed flocks of sheep and not men; for if one sheep should 
throw himself down a precipice of a thousand feet, all the 
rest would follow; and if one for any canse in passing a road 
should leap, all the rest would do the s:iroe, though they saw 
lothing to leap over '* 

19-111. PURGATORY. Canto ni. 999 

Mv Diaflter ; and that virtuous tribe rejoin'd 

'* Turn, and before you there the entrance Let ," 

Making a signal to us with bent hands. 

Then of them one began : ** Whoe'er thou art. 
Who joumey'st thus this way, thy visage turn ; 
Think if me elsewhere thou hast ever seen." 

I towards him turned, and with fiz'd eye beheld. 
Comely and fair, and gentle of aspect 
He seem'd, but on one brow a gash was marked. 

When humbly I disclaim'd to have beheld 
Him ever : " Now behold !" he said, and showM 
High on his breast a wound : then smiling spake 

" I am Manfredi,^ grandson to the Qneen 
Costanza :* whence I pray thee, when retr^n'd, 

1 Ma^edi.] King of Naples and SIcU r, and the nataxal 
80B of Frederick IL He was lively and afreeable in his 
maanen, and delighted in poetry, music, and dancing. Bat 
he was loxarious and ambitions, void of religion, and in his 
philosophy an Epicurean. See G. ViUani, lib. vi. cap. xlvii., 
and Mr. Mathias*s Tiraboschi, vol. i. p. 99. He fell In the 
battle with Charles of Anjou, in 19S5, allnded to in Canto 
zxtIU. of Hell, ver. 13, or rather in that which ensued in the 
course of a few days at Benevento. But the successes of 
Charles were so rapidly followed up, that our author, exact 
as he generally is, might pot have thought it necessary to 
distinguish them in point of time ; for this seems the best 
methml of reconciling some little appnrent inconsistency be- 
tween him and the annalist. ** Dying excommunicated, 
King Charles did not allow of his being buried in sacred 
ground, but he was interred near the bridge of Benevento ; 
and on his grave there was cast a stone by every one of the 
army, whence there was formed a great mound of stones. 
But some have said, that afterwards, by command of the 
Pope, the Bishop of Cosenza took up his body, and sent it 
out of the Idngdom, because it was the land of the church ; 
and that it was buried by the river Verde, on the borders of 
the kingdom and of Campagna. This, however, we do not 
affirm.** G. VUlani, Hist., lib. vU. cap. 0. Manfiredl and his 
father are spoken of by our Poet in his De Vnlg. Eloq., lib. L 
cap. 1% with singular commendation. '* Siquidem illustres/* 
ice. ^ Those illustrious worthies, Frederick the Emperor, 
and his well-bom son Manfredi, manifested their noUlity and 
uprightness of form, as long as fortune remained, by follow* 
ing pursuits worthy of men, and disdained those which are 
suited only to brutes. Such, therefore, as were of a lofty 
spirit, and graced with natural endowments, endeavored to 
walk in the track which the majesty of such great princes 
had marked out for them : so that whatever was in their 
.ime attempted by eminent Italians, first made Its appearanoe 
in the court of crowned sovereigns ; and because Sicily was 
a royal throne, it came to pass that whatever was produced 
)n the vernacular tongue by our predecessors was called Siel 
Han ; which neither we nor our posterity ihall he able tc 

s Ccttxima.) See Paradise, Canto lit. 131. 


To my fair daughter^ go, the parent glad 
Of Aragonia and Sicilia's pride ; 
And of the truth inform her, if of me 
Aught else be told. When by two mortal blows 
My frame was shatter'd, I betook myself 
Weeping to him, who of free will forgives. 
My sins were horrible : but so wide armi: 
Hath goodness infinite, that it receives 
All who turn to it. Had this text divine 
Been of Cosenza's shepherd better scann'd, 
Who then by Clement' on my himt was set, 
Yet at the bridge's head my bones had lain. 
Near Benevento, by the heavy mole 
Protected ; but the rain now drenches them, 
And the wind drives, out of the kingdom's boundsj 
Far as the stream of Verde,' where, with lights 
Extinguished, he removed them from their bed. 
Yet by their curse we are not so destroyed. 
But that the eternal love may turn, while hope* 
Retains her verdant blossom. True it is, 
That such one as in contumacy dies 
Against the holy church, though he repent* 
Must wander thirty-fold for all the time 
In his presumption pass'd ; if such decree 
Be not by prayers of good men shorter made. 
Look therefore if thou canst advance my bliss ; 
Revealing to my good Costanza, how 
Thou hast beheld me, and beside, the terms 
Laid on me of that interdict ; for here 
By means of those below much profit comes." 

* JUif fair daughter.] Costanza, the daughter of Manft^di, 
and wife of Peter III., king of Aragon, by whom she wa« 
mother to Frederick, king of Sicily, and James, king of Ara- 
gon. With the latter of these she was at Rome 1^6. 8e€ 
G. Villani, lib. viil. cap. 18, and Notes to Canto vii. 

* Clement.] Pope Clement IV 

> T%e stream of Verde.} A river near Ascoli, that falls into 
IheTronto. The "extinguished lights*' formed part of the 
ceremony at the interment of one ezconmianicated. 

Passa la mora di Manfrd, cal lava 

II Verde. 

Xlberti, Dittamondo, lib. ill. cap. i., m 
corrected by Pertieaii 

« ir^M.] 

Mentre che la speranzaha fior del verdc. 

On Tasso, G. L., Canto xlx. st. 53. 

— — infin che verde i flor dl speme 

M PURGATORY, Canix) IV. 241 



Dante and Virgil ascend the monntain of Pnigatory, by a 
steep and narrow path pent in on each side by rock, till 
Huj reach a part of it that opens into a ledge or cornice. 
Thero seating themselves, and turning to the east, Dante 
wonders at seeing the snn on their left, the cause of which 
is explained to him by Virgil ; and while they conttnue 
their discourse, a voice addresses them, at which thev turn, 
and find several spirits behind the rocic, and among tne rest 
one named Belacqna, who had been known to our Poet on 
earth, and who tells that he is doomed to Ihiger there on 
account of his having delayed his repentance to the last 

When^ by sensationts of delight or pain, 
That any of our faculties hath seized, 
Entire the soul collects herself, it seems 
She is intent upon that power alone ; 
And thus the error is disproved, which holds 
The soul not smgly lighted in the breast. 
And therefore whenas aught is heard or seen, 

1 IVhen.] It must be owned the beginning of this Canto la 
somewhat obscure. Vellutello refers, for an elucidation of it, 
to the reasoning of Statins in the twenty-filth Canto. Per- 
haps some illustration may be derived from the following 
passage in the Summa Theologis of Thomas Aquinas. " Sonto 
say that in addition to the vegetable soul, which was present 
from the first, there supervenes another soul, which is the 
sensitive, and again, In addition to that, another, which is 
the intellective. . And so there are in man three souls, one of 
which exists potentially with regard to another : but this has 
been already disproved. And accordingly others say that 
that same soul, which at first was merely vegetative, is, 
through action of the seminal virtue, carried forward till it 
reaches to that point, in which, being still the same, it never- 
theless becomes sensitive ; and at length the same by an ul- 
terior progression is led on till it becomes intellective; not. 
Indeed, through the seminal virtue acting in it, but by virtue 
of a superior agent, that is, God, enlightening it firom with- 
out.** (This opinion he next proceeds to confute.) " Dicunt 
eigo quidam qubd supra animam vegetabilem, que primo in- 
erat, supervenit alia anima, qus est sensitiva, supra illatn 
itemm alia qnse est intellectiva. £t sic sunt in homine tres 
anims, quamm una est in potentia ad aliaro, quod supra im- 
probatum est Et ideo alii dicunt, qubd ilia eadem anima, 
qua primo fnit vegetativa tantum, postmodum per actionem 
virtutis, que est in semine, perducitur ad hoc, ut ipsa eadem 
fiat sensitiva; et tandem ipsa eadem perducitur ad hoe, ut 
ipsa eadem fiat intellectiva, non quidem per virtntem acti- 
vam seminis, sed per virtutem superioris agentis, scilicet Dei 
deforis illustrantis.** 7%om. Aquin. Opera, Edit. Venet., 1595, 
torn. X. ; Summa Theolog: Ima Pars., Qmeatio cxviii. Jirt. ii 
Uee also Lettere di Fra Guittonc, 4o. Roma, 1745, p. 15 ; anc* 
Routh*B note on the Gorgias of Plato p. 451. 

242 THE VISION. 8-44 

Tnat firmly keeps the soul toward it tum'o 
Time passes, and a man perceives it not 
For that, whereby we hearken, is one powei ; 
Another that, wluch the whole spirit hath : 
This is as it were bound, while that is free. 

This found I true by proof, hearmg that sptiit, 
And wondering ; for full fifty steps^ aloft 
The sun had measured, unobserved of me, 
When we arrived where all with one accord 
The spirits shouted, *' Here is what ye ask." 

A larger aperture oft-times is stopp'd, 
With forked stake of thorn by villager, 
When the ripe grape imbrowns, than was the paili, 
By which my guide, and I behind him close. 
Ascended solitary, when that troop 
Departing left us. On SanleoV road 
Who journeys, or to Noli' low descends. 
Or mounts Bismantua's* height, must use his feet : 
Bu\ here a man had need to fiy, I mean 
With the swift wing^ and plumes of high desire, 
Conducted by his aid, who gave me hope. 
And with light fumish'd to direct my way. 

We through the broken rock ascended, close ^ 
Pent on each side, while underneath the ground 
Ask'd help of hands and feet When we arrived 
Near on the highest ridge of the steep bank. 
Where the plain level open'd, I exclaim'd, 
" O Master ! say, which way can we proceed." 

He answered, " Let no step of thine recede. 
Behind me gain the mountain, till to us 
Some practised guide appear." That eminence 
Was lofty, that no eye might reach its point ; 
And the side proudly rising, more than line* 
From the mid quadrant to the centre drawn. 
I, wearied, thus began : ** Parent beloved I 
Turn and behold how I remain alone, 
If thou stay not." — " My son !" he straight replied, 

> Fulljifty 9tep8.'\ Three hours and twenty minutes, fifleec 
degrees being reckoned to an hour. 

3 Savleoi] A fortress on the summit of Montefeltro. The 
slttiation is described by Troya, Veltro AUegoricn, p. 11. Ii 
Is a conspicuous ol^ect to travellers along the cornice on the 
riviera di Genoa. 

* JV*o/t.] In *he Genoese territory, between Finale and Sa- 

* BiamBMtun, A steep mountain in the territory of RoBkx 

* With the twift wing.] Compare Paradise, Canto xxxiULi 7 

* More than line.] ft was much nearer to being periieikUo 
liar than horizontal. 

10-09 PURGATORY, Canto IV. 343 

** Thus far put forth thy strength ;" and to a track 
Pointed} that, on this side projecting, round 
Circles the hill. His wonb so spuir'd me on, 
That I, behind him, clambering, forced myself, 
Till my feet press'd the circuit plain beneath. 
There both together seated, tum'd we round 
To eastward, whence was our ascent : and oft 
Many beside have with delight look'd back. 

Fust on the nether siiores I tum'd mine eyes, 
Then raised them to the sun, and wondering markM 
That from the left* it smote us. Soon perceived 
That poet sage, how at the car of light 
Amazed^ I stooid, where 'twixt us and the north 
Its course it enter'd. Whence he thus to me : 
" Were Leda*s ofl^ring* now in company 
Of that broad mirror, that high up and low 
Imparts his light beneath, thou mightst behold 
The ruddy Z^iac nearer to the Bean 
Wheel, if its ancient course it not forsook. 
How that may be, if thou wouldst think ; within 
Pondering, imagine Sion with this mount 
Placed on the earth, so that to both be one 
Horizon, and two hemispheres apart. 
Where lies the path* that Phaeton ill knew 
To guide his erring chariot : thou wilt see' 

> FY-om the left.\ Yellatello observes an imitation of Lacan 
in this passage : 

Ignotnm vobis, Arabest venistis in orbem. 
Umbras mirati nemorum non ire sinisoas. 

Phars^ lib. iiL 848. 

jlnuited,] He wonders that being tamed to the east he 
should see the snn on his left, since in all the regions on this 
side of the tropic of Cancer it is seen on the right of one 
who turns his face towaids the east; not recollecting that 
he was now antipodal to Europe, from whence he hadf seeu 
the sun taking an opposite course. 

3 Were LtAiCe offsjfrinjf.] "As the constellation of the 
Glemini is nearer the Bears than Aries is, it is certain that if 
the sun, insictid of being in Aries, had been in €remini, both 
the sun and that portion of the Zodiac made ' ruddy* by the 
sun, would have been seen to * wheel nearer to the Bears.* 
By the 'ruddy Zodiac* must necessarily be understood that 
portion of the Zodiac affected or made red by the sun; 
fox the whole of the Zodiae never changes, nor appears to 
change, with respect to the remainder of the heavens.**— 

* jn$ path.} The ecliptic. 

* Tlftt loilt eee."] " If you consider that this mount^dn ca 
Purgatory, and that of Sion, are antipodal to each other, yoa 
will perceive that the sun must liie on opposite sides of tlie 
respective eminences." 

244 THE VISION. "^K im 

How of neceasity by this, on one, 

He passes, while by that on the other side ; 

If with that clear view thine intellect attend." 

*< Of truth, kind teacher!" I exclaun'd, " bo cL*&i 
Angrht saw I never, as I now discern. 
Where seem'd my ken to fail, that the mid oib' 
Of the supernal motion (which in terms 
Of art is called the Equator, and remains 
Still 'twixt the sun and winter) for the cause 
TIiou hast assign'd, from hence toward the north 
Departs, when those, who in the Hebrew land 
Were dwellers, saw it towards the warmer part 
But if it please thee, I would gladly know, 
How far we have to journey : for the hill 
Mounts higher, than this sight of mine can mount ^ 

He thus to me : " Such is this steep ascent, 
That it is ever difficult at first. 
But more a man proceeds, less evil grows.* 
When pleasant it shall seem to thee, so much 
That upward going shall be easy to thee 
As in a vessel to go down the tide. 
Then of this path thou wilt have reach'd the end 
There hope to rest thee from thy toil. No more 
I answer, and thus far for certam know." 
As he his words had spoken, near to us 
A voice there sounded : ** Yet ye first perchance 
May to repose you by constraint be led." 
At sound thereof each tum'd ; and on the left 
A huge stone we beheld, of which nor I 
Nor he before was ware. Thither we drew ; 
And there were some, who in the shady place 
Behind the rock were standing, as a man 
Through idleness might stand. Among them one, 
Who seem'd to be much wearied, sat him down. 
And with liis arms did fold his knees about. 
Holding his face between them downward bent 

"Sweet Sur!" I cried, "behold that man who 
Himself more idle than if laziness [shows 

Were sister to him." Straight he turn'd to us. 

1 Tkat the mid orb.] " That the equator (which is always 
:.itaated between that part where, when the sun is, he causes 
niumer, and the other where his absence produces vvinter 
recedes from this mountain towards the north, at the time 
when the Jews inhabiting Mount Sion saw it depart towards 
the south.**— Zttfindaftfi. 

* But more a man proe«ed», leu evU gt •«».'] Beoauae ts 
ucending he gets rid of the weight of hu sin«. 

U»-135 PUK6ATORY, Canto EY. 2411 

And, o'er the thigh liftmg his face, observed, 
Then in these accents spake : " Up then, proceed, 
Thou valiant one." Straight who it was I knew 
Nor could the pain I felt (for want of breath 
Still somewhat urged me) hinder my approach. 
And when I came to him, he scarce his head 
Uplifted, saying, ** Well hast thou discem'd. 
How from Uie left the sun his chariot leadB." 

His lazy acts and broken words my lips 
To laughter somewhat moved ; when I began : 
" Belacqua,^ now for thee I grieve no more. 
But tell, why thou art seated upright there. 
Waitest thou escort to conduct thee hence? 
Or blame I only thine accustomed ways?" 
Then he : " My brother ! of what use to mount* 
When, to my suffering, would not let me pass 
The bird of God,' who at the portal sits? 
Behooves so long that heaven first bear me round 
Without its limits, as in life it bore ; 
Because I, to the end, repentant sighs 
Delay'd ; if prayer do not aid me first, 
That riseth up from heart which lives in grace 
What other kind avails, not heard in heaven?" 

Before me now the poet, up the mount 
Ascending, cried : " Haste thee : for see the sun 
Has touch'd the point meridian ; and the ni^ht 
Now covers with her foot Marocco's shore."' 

1 Bdacqua.] Concerning this man, the cominentaton 
afford no infcnrmation, except that in the maigin of the 
Monte Cassino MS. there is found this brief notice of him : 
'^Iste Belacqna fait opCimas magister cithuammt et lento- 
nim, et pigriasimus homo in operibos mondi aicnt in opexibos 
animc." **This Belacqna was an excellent master of the 
harp and lute, but very negligent in his aflkirs, both siriritoal 
and temporaL" Luttra di Euttaxio Diuarekeo ad Angdio 
Sidieino. 4to.Roma. 1801. 

s Tke Hrd of Ood.] Here are two other readings, **U8CioK* 
and " AngeV '* Usher** and *« Anger of God. 

s Maroeeo'M shore.] Caoine la notte gi& col pie Marocco 
Benoe, perhaps, Milton : 

Damasco, or Marocco, or Trebisond. 

J*. X(«, b. i. 584 

outead of Marocco, as he elsewhere calls it : 

Morocco and Algiers and Tremlsen. 

V tbb vowels were to change places, the vsrse would is 
ftodi liwlHiees be spoiled. 




rbey meet with others, who had deferred thdir repentathoe 
till they were overtaken by a violent death, when saflfeient 
space being allowed them, they were then saved; and 
among these, Giacopo del Cassero, Buonconte da Monle- 
feltro, and Pia, a lady of Sienna. 

Now had I left those spirits, and pursued 
The steps of my conductor ; when behind, 
Pointing the finger at me, one exciaim'd : 
" See, how it seems as if the light not shone 
From the left hand^ of him beneath,^ and he, 
As living, seems to be led on." Mine eyes, 
I at that sound reverting, saw them gaze. 
Through wonder, first at me ; and then at me 
And the light broken underneath, by turns. 
" Why are thy thoughts thus riveted," my guide 
Exclaiin'd, " that thou hast slacked thy pace ? or how 
Imports it thee, what thin? is whispe^d here ? 
Come after me, and to theu: babblmgs leave 
The crowd. Be as a tower,* that, firmly set, 
Shakes not its top for any blast that blows. 
He, in whose bosom thought on thought shoots out, 
Still of his aim is wide, in that the one 
Sicklies and wastes to naught the other's strength " 

What other could I answer, save " I come ?" 
I said it, somewhat with that color tinged, 
Which oft-times pardon meriteth for man. 

Meanwhile traverse along the hill there came, 
A little way before us, some who sang 
The " Miserere" in responsive strains. 
When they perceived tiiat through my body I 
Gave way not for the rays to pass, their song 

^ It teenu as if the lifJU net shone 
From the Itft hand.} The son was, therefore, on the tight 
of oar travellers. For, as before, when seated and looking 
to the east from whence they had ascended, the sun was on 
their left ; so now that they have risen and are again golBg 
forward, it must be on the opposite side of them. 

3 Of him beneath,] Of Dante, who was following Vbgll (% 
Lhe mountain, and Uierefore was the lower of the two 

* Beaea toieer.] Sta come torre ferma. 
Bo Berni, Orl. Inn., lib. i. canto zvL st. 48. 

Tn qnei dne piedl sta fermo 11 glgante 
Com* una torre in meuo d\n castelkx 

AEi MUton, P L , b. 1. 501. 

Stood nice a tower. 

Kr-«3. PCTRGATORY, Canto V. 247 

Straight to a long and hoane exclaim they changed! 
And two of them, in guise of messengeiSi 
Ran on to meet us, and inquiring ask'd : 
• Of your condition we would gladly learn." 

To them my guide. " Ye may return, and bear 
Tidings to them who sent you, that his frame 
Is reiJ flesh. If, as I deem, to view 
His shade they paused, enough is answered them : 
Him let them honor : they may prize him well." 

Ne'er saw I fiery vapors^ with such speed 
Cut through the serene air at fall of night. 
Nor August's clouds athwart the setting sun, 
That upward these did not in shorter space 
Return ; and, there arriving, with the rest 
Wheel back on us, as with loose rein a troop. 

** Many," exclaim'd the bard, ** are these, wl o 
Around us : to petition thee, they come. [throng 
Go therefore on, and listen as thou go*st" 

" O spirit ! who go'st on to blessedness, 
With the same limbs that clad thee at thy birth," 
Shouting they came : " a little rest thy step. 
Look if thou any one among our tribe 
Hast e'er beheld, that tidings of him there^ 
Thou mayst report. Ah, wherefore go'st thou on ? 
Ah, wherefore tarriest thou not? We all 
By violence died, and to our latest hour 
Were sinners, but then wam'd by light from heaven | 
So that, repenting and forgiving, we 
Did issue out of Ufe at peace with God, 
Who, with desire to see him, fills our heart." 

Then I : " The visages of all I scan, 
Yet none of ye remember. But if aught 
That I can do may please you, gentle spirits ! 
Speak, and I will perform it ; by that peace, 
Which, on the steps of guide so excellent 
Following, from world to world, intent I seek " 

In answer he began : " None here distrusts 

1 JiVer aaw I fiery vapora.l Imitated by Tasso G. I* 
nato zix. st. 63. 

Tal saol fendendo liquido serene 
Stella cader della gran madre in seno. 

And by MUton, P L., b. Iv. 558. 

Swift as a shooting star 

In autnmn thwarts the night, when vapors fired 
Impress the air. 
Torapan Statins, Theb., i. 92. 

nice! ligne Jovis, lapsisqne citatlor istris. 
re.J Upon the earth. 


Thy kindness, though not promised with an oath ; 
So as the will fail not for want of power. 
Whence I, who sole before the others speak* 
Entreat thee, if thou ever see that land' 
Which lies between Romagrna and the realm 
Of Charles, that of thy courtesy thou pray 
Those who inhabit Fano, that for mt» 
Their adorations duly be put up. 
By which I may pur?e off my grieyous sins. 
From thence I came? But the deep passages, 
Whence issued out the blood* wherein I dwelt. 
Upon my bosom in Antenor's land^ 
Were made, where to be more secure I thought 
The author of the deed was Este's prince. 
Who, more than right could warrant, with his wratt 
Pursued me. Had I towards Mira fled. 
When overtaken at Oriaco, still 
Might I have breathed. But to the marsh I sped : 
And in the mire and rushes tangled there 
Fell, and beheld my life-blood float the plain." 
Then said another : " Ah ! so may the wish. 
That takes thee o'er the mountain, be fulfiU'd, 
As thou shalt graciously give aid to mine. 
Of Montefeltro I f Buonconte I : 
Giovanna* nor none else have care for me ; 
Sorrowing with these I therefore go." I tlius : 
" From Campaldino's field what force or chance 

1 TTkat land.] The Maiea d*Ancona, between Bomagna 
BAd Apulia, the kingdom of Charles of Anjon. 

9 FVom tkenet J eame.\ Giacopo del Cassero, a citizen of 
Fano, who having spoken ill of Axso da Este, MarqaU of 
Ferrara, was by his orders pot to death. Giacopo was over 
taken by the assassins at Oilaco, a place near the Bienta, 
from whence If he had fled towards Mira, higher up on that 
river, instead of maUng lor the manh on the sea-shore, he 
might have escaped. 

* T^Usod.] BappoaedtobetheseatofUie. 

* JtHtemof^g Umd.} The dty of Padna, said to be fonaded 
by Antenor.'— This implies a reflection on the Padnans. See 
Hell, ixxii. 80. Thos G. Villani calls the Venetians ** the 
perfidious descendants ftom the blood of Aatenor, the be 
trayer of his eoon^ry, Troy.** Lib. zL cap. 89 

* OfMont^dtn L\ Booneonte (son of Goldo da Monte- 
feltro, whom we have had in the twenty-seventh Canto oi 
Hell) fell In the batUe of Campaldino, (1S89,) fighting oa the 
Bide of the Aretini. In this engagement onr Poet took a dis- 
tingnished part, as we have seen related ia his lift. See Fasle 
ile^ Ubert^ Dittamondo, lib. U. cap. zxiz. 

* OMeamia.] Either the wife, or a kinswonaa of Boon 

rt-m. PUKGATORY, Cantj V. 249 

Drew thee, that ne'er thy sepulture was known?" 

*' Oh !" answered he, " at Casentmo's foot 
A stream there courseth, named Archiano, sprung 
In Apennine above the hermit's seat.' 
E'en where its name is cancell'd,* there came I, 
Pierced in the throat,' fleeing away on foot, 
And bloodying the plain. Here sight and speech 
Fail'd me ; and, finishing with Mary's name, 
I fell, and tenantless my flesh remain'd. 
I will report the truth ; which thou again 
Tell to the living. Me God's angel took,^ 
While he of hell exclaim'd : * O Uiou from heaven .' 

* Say wherefore hast thou robb'd me 7 Thou of him 
' Th' eternal portion bear'st with thee away, 

* For one poor tear* that he deprives me of. 
' But of the other, other rule I make.' 

" Thou know'st how in the atmosphere collects 
That vapor dank, returning into water 
Soon as it mounts where cold condenses it. 
That evil will,* which in his intellect 
Still follows evil, came ; and raised the wind 
And smoky mist, by virtue of the power 
Given by his nature. Thence the valley, soon 
As day was spent, he cover'd o'er with cloud. 
From Pratomagno to the mountain range f 
And stretch'd the sky above ; so that the air 
Impregnate changed io water. Fell the rain ; 
And to the fosses came all that the land 
Contain'd not ; and, as mightiest streams are wont, 
To the great river, with such headlong sweep, 

1 The hermiVa seat.] The hennitage of CamaldoU. 
> Where its name is eanceWdJ] That is, between Bibbiena 
and Poppi, where the Archiano falls into the Arno. 

* Throat] In the farmer editions it was printed " heart** 
Hr. Garlyle has observed the error. 

* Me God's angel took.] Cam autem finem vite ezplesset 
Nervas Dei aspiciens vidit diabolum Kimul et Angelom ad 
aiumam stantem ac unum quemqne iilam sibi toUere festi- 
inntem. Mberiei Visio, $ 18. 

* ¥br one poor tear.] visum est quod angelus Domini la* 

ehiimas quas dives ilie fuderat in ampidla tener^t. Al- 

heriei Visio^ % 18. 

* T^at evU will.] The devil. Lombard! refers us to Alber- 
tns Bfagnos, de Potenti& Deemonum. This notion of the Evil 
^irit having power over the elements, appears to have arisen 
from his being termed the ' prince of the air,* in the New 

^ fhnn Pratomarno to the mountain range.] Prom Prato- 
magno, now called Prato Vecchio (which divides the Val 
'lamo from Casentino) as far as to the Apennine. 

edO THE V)SION. m-lS3 

RmliMi that naught stay'd its coune. My BtiflfoB^i 
Laid at his mouth, the fell Archiano ibund, [frame. 
And dash'd it into Amo ; from my hreast 
Loosening the cross, that of myself I made 
When oyercome with pain, lie hurUd me on. 
Along the banks and bottom of his course ; 
Then in his muddy spoils encircling wrapp'd." 

** Ah ! when thou to the world £alt be retuni*(l« 
And rested after thy long road," so spake 
Next the third spirit ; " Uien remember me. 
I once was Pia.^ Sienna gave me life ; 
Maremma took it from me. That he knows. 
Who me with jewell'd ring had first eqwused.*' 



Many besides, who are in like case with those spoxen of ti. 
the last Canto, beseech our Poet to obtain for them the 
prayers of their friends, when he shall be returned to this 
world. This moves him to express a doubt to his guide, 
how the dead can be profited by the prayen of the living; 
for the solution of which doubt he is referred to Beatrice 
Afterwards he meets with Sordello the Mantuan, whose 
aflbction, shown to Virgil his countryman, leads Dante tii 
break forth into an invective agidnst the annataral divl 
sions with which Italy, and more especially Florence, w^ 

When from their game of dice men separate, 

He who hath lost remains in sadness fix*d, 

Revolving in his mind^ what luckless throws 

He cast: but, meanwhile, all the company 

Go with the other ; one before bun runs. 

And one behind his mantle twitches, one 

Fast by his side bids him remember him. 

He stops not ; and each one, to whom his hand 

Is stretch'd, well kaows he bids him stand aside ; 

1 PitL] She is said to have been a Siennese lady, of the 
Ibmily of Tolommel, secretly made away with by her hm- 
band Nello della Pletra of the same city, in Bfaremma, when 
he had some possessions, 
s Reoolving^ m ku mind.] 

Riman dolente 

Ripetendo le volte, e triste impara. 

Lombardl explains this : " That the loser remains by hipi 
self, and taking up the dice casts them over again, as if to 
learn how he may throw the numbers he could wish to eona 
up.*' There is something very natural in thia ; but wbetbe: 
the senk J can be fairly deduced from tiie words, ii annChci 
flies tion. 

0-23. FURGATORY Canto VI. 861 

A.iid thiu' he from the press defends himself 
E*en such was I in that close-crowding thrciug , 
And turning so my face around to all, 
And promising, I 'scaped from it with pains. 

Here of Arezzo him* I saw, who fell 
By Ghino's cruel arm ; and him beside,' 
Who in his chase was swallow'd by the stream. 
H^re Frederic Novello,* with his hand 
Stretch'd forth, entreated ; and of Pisa he,' 
Who put the good Marzuco to such proof 
Of constancy. Count Orso* I beheld ; 
And from its frame a soul dismissed for spite 
And envy, as it said, but for no crime ; 
I speak of Peter de la Brosse :^ and here, 

> ^nd thu8.] The late Archdeacon Fisher pointed oat tc 
me a passage in the Novela de la Gitanllla of Cervantes, 
Ed. Valentia, 1797, p. 13, from which it appears that it was 
usual for money to be given to bystanders at play by win- 
ners; and as he well remariced: "Dante is therefore de- 
scribing, with his usual power of observation, what he had 
often seen, the shuffling, boon-denying exit of the suceessAil 

s Of jSreizo him.] Benincasa of Arezzo, eminent for hla 
skill in jurisprudence, who having condemned to death Tur- 
rlao da Turrita, brother of Ghino di Tacco, for his robberies 
Lu M aremma, was murdered by Ghino, in an apartment of his 
own house, lii the presence of many witnesses. Ghino was 
not only suffered to escape in safety, but (as the commenta- 
tors inform us) obtained so high a reputation by the liberality 
with which he was accustomed to dispense the fhiits of his 
plunder, and treated those who fell into his hands with so 
much coortesy, that he was afterwards invited to Rome, and 
Idjghted by Boniface VIII. A story is told of him by Boc- 
ca«xio, 6. X. N. 3. 

s Him beside."} Clone, or Clacco de'Tarlatti of Arezzo. He 
Is Sdid to have been carried by his horse into the Arno, and 
thei^e drowned, while he was in pursuit of certain of his en- 

• Frederic J^ovello.\ Son of the Conte Gnido da Battifolle, 
and slain by one of the family of Bostoli. 

• Of Piaa Ae.] Farinata de* Scornlglanl of Pisa. Hit fa- 
ther Marzuco, who had entered the order of the Frati Minori, 
io entirely overcame the feelings of resentment, that he even 
kissed the hands of the slayer of his son, and, as he was 
following the funemi, exhorted his kinsmen to reconciliation. 
The eighteenth and thirtieth In the coUection of Gulttone 
d*Arezzo*s Letters are addressed to Marraco. The latter la 
In verse. 

• Ckmnt Orto.l Son of Napoleone da Cer i»ala, slain by 
Alberto da Mangona, his uncle. 

7 Peter de la Brost:] Secretary of Philip ill. of France 
The courtiers, env}ing the high place which he held in the 
king's favor, prevailed on Mary of Brabant to charge him* 
ftbely with an attempt upon her person ; fox which supposed 
Clime he snflered death. 

852 THE VKiOlS. a*-.*'; 

While she yet lives, that, L>»dy of Rrahaiist 

Let her beware ; lest for so false u^oed 

She herd with worse thin Che^e. Wbsn I was fccod 

From all those spirits, who pray'd for ethers' prayons 

To hasten on their state of blessedness ; 

Straight I began : ** O thou, my luminary ! 

It seems expressly in thy text' denied. 

That heaven's supreme decree can ever bend 

To supplication ; yet with this design 

Do these entreat. Can then their hope be vaio 7 

Or is thy saying not to me reveal'd ?" 

He thus to me : " Both what I write is plaiii, 
And these deceived not in their hope ; if well 
Thy mind consider, that the sacred height 
Of judgment^ doth not stoop, because love's flame 
In a short moment all fulfils, which he, 
Who sojourns here, in right should satisfy. 
Besides, when I this point concluded thiis. 
By praying no defect could be supplied ; 
Because the prayer had none access to God. 
Yet in this deep suspicion rest thou not 
Contented, unless she assure thee so, 
Who betwixt truth and mind infuses light : 
[ know not if thou take me right ; I mean 
Beatrice. Her thou shalt behold above,^ 
Upon this mountain's crown, fair seat of joy." 

Then I : " Sir ! let us mend t ur speed ; for noni 
I tire not as before : and lo I the hill^ 

So say the Italian commentators. Henault represents th«i 
matter very differently: "Pierre de la Brosse, formerly biiT> 
ber to St. Louis, afterwards the favorite of Philip, fearing 
the too great attachment of the king for his wife Mary, ac - 
cases this princess of having poisoned Lonis, eldest son of 
Philip, hy his first maniaee. This calumny is discovered by 
a nun of Nivelle in Flanders. La Brosse is hung.** Jihriri 
Chron., 15275, &c. The Deputati, or those deputed to wnta 
annotations on the Decameron, suppose that Boccaccio, iK 
the Giomata, 11. Novella 9, took the story from this pasMge 
in Dante, only concealing the real names and changing the 
Incidents in some parts, in order not to wound the foeliagii 
of those whom, as it was believed, these incidents \juk to 
lately befallen. Ediz. Giupti, 3573, p. 40. 

> In thy text.] He refers to Virgil, iEn., lib. vi. 7^6. 

Desine fata deAm flectl sperare precando. 

a The eacred height 

Of jud£rment.] 
S?o Shakspeare, Measure for Measure, aot ii. so. 9. 
If he, which is the top of Judgment. 
* 4&ore.] See Purgat., n. xxx. v. 33. 
( T%e hill."] It was now past the nnoo. 

sa-75 PURGATORY, Cavio VI. 353 

Stietchee its shadow far.*' He answer'd thus: 
** Oar progress with this day shall be as much 
As we may now dispatch ; but otherwise 
Than thou supposest is the truth. For there 
Thou canst not be, ere thou once more behold 
Him back returning, who behind the steep 
Is now BO hidden, that, as erst, his beam 
Thou dost not break. But lo ! a spuit there 
Stands solitary, and toward us looks : 
It will instruct us in the speediest way." 

We soon approach'd it. O thou Lombard spirit! 
How didst thou stand, in high abstracted mood. 
Scarce moving with slow dignity thine eyes. 
It spoke not aught, but let us onward pass. 
Eyeing us as a lion on his watch.^ 
But Virgil, with entreaty mild, advanced. 
Requesting it to show the best ascent. 
It answer to his question none retum'd ; 
But of our country and our kind of life 
Demanded. When my courteous guide began, 
" Mantua," the shadow, in itself absorbed,' 
Rose towards us from the place in wliich it stood, 
And cried, " Mantuan ! I am thy countryman, 
Sordello."' Each the other then embraced. 

I Eyeing- n« as a lion on his toatch.] 

A guisa di leon quando si posa. 

A line taken by Tasso, 6. L., can. 2 • st 56. 

s 7%e shadow^ in itself absorbed.] 1 had before translated 
"The solitary shadow;" and. have made the alteration in 
consequence of Monti's just remark on the original, thai 
tntta in se romita does not mean " solitary," but ** collected, 
concentrated in itself." See his Proposta under " Romito." 
Vellntello had shown him the way to this interpretation, 
when he explained the words by tutta in se raccotta e sola. 
Petrarch applies the expression to the spirit of Laura, when 
departing trom the body. See his Triumph of Death, cap. 1 
V. 152. 

> Sordello.} The history of Bordello's life is wrapped in the 
obscurity of romance. That he distinguished himself by his 
skill in Proven9al poetry is certain ; and many feats of uiili- 
tary prowess have been attributed to him. It is probable 
that he was bora towards the end of the twelfth, and died 
about the middle of the succeeding century. Tiraboschi, 
who terms him the most illustrious of all the Provencal 
poets of his ase, has taken much pains to sift all the notices 
he could collect relating to him, and has particularly ex- 
posed the &bulous narrative which Platlna has introduced 
en this sutgect in his history of Mantua. Honorable men- 
tion of his name is made by our Poet in the treatise de 
Vulg. Eloq., lib. i. cap. 15, where it is said that, remarkable 
u he was for eloquence, he deserted the vernacular languagr 


264 THE VISION. 76-9f2 

Ah, slavish Italy ! thou inn of grief!' 
Vessel without a pilot in loud storm ! 
Lady no longer of fair provinces, 
But brothel-house impure ! this gentle spirit, 
Even from the pleasant sound of his dear land 
Was prompt to greet a fellow-citizen 
With such glad cheer : while now thy living oneef 
In thee abide not without war ; and one 
Malicious gnaws another ; ay, of those 
Whom the same wall and the same moat contaui», 
Seek, wretched one ! around thy sea-coasts wide : 
Then homeward to thy bosom turn ; and mark, 
If any part of thee sweet peace enjoy. 
What boots it, that thy reins Justinian's hand' 
Refitted, if thy saddle be unpress'd? 
Naught doth he now but aggravate thy shame 
Ah, people ! thou obedient still shouldst live, 
And in the saddle let thy Ceesar sit, 
If well thou markedst that which God commands.^ 

Look how that beast to fellness hath relapsed. 
From having lost correction of the spur, 
Since to the bridle thou hast set thine hand. 

of his own country, not only In his poems, bat in every othei 
kind of writing. Tiraboschi had at first concluded him lii 
be the same writer whom Dante elsewhere (De Vulg. Eloq., 
lib. ii. c. 1.3) calls Gottus Mantuanns, but afterwa^s gave 
up that opinion to the authofity of the Gonte d'Arco and 
the Abate Bettinelli. By Bastero, in his Cmsca Provenzale, 
Ediz. Roma, 1734, p. 94, among Sordello's MS. poems in 
the Vatican are mentioned "Canzoni, Tenzonl, Cobbole;*' 
and various " Serventesi," particularly one in the form of a 
funeral song on the death of Blancas, in which the poet 
reprehends all the reigning princes in Christendom. This 
last was well suited to attract the notice of our author. 
Mention of Sordello will recur in the notes to the Paradise 
c. ix. V. 32. Since this note was written, many of SordeUo*c 
poems have been brought to light bv the industry of M. Say 
nouard in his Choix des Poesies des Troubadours and ati 
Lexique Roman. 
» Th4ni inn of grief.] 

S* io son d'ognl dolore ostello e chiave. 

Fita JWova di Dante^ p. 225 

Thou most beau^^oua inn, 

Why should haid-favor'd grief be lodged in thee 1 

Skaktpeare^ Richard JI^ act v. so. 1. 

2 7%y living ones.] Compare Milton, P. L., b. iL 406^ Ice. 

• Jiutinian*9 hand.] *< What avails it that Jmtiiilaa dellT 
t>red thee from the Goths and reformed thy laws, If thov ul 
no longer under the control of his successors in the empire 1** 

* T%a tohich Ood eontmanda.l He alludes to the precept- 
' Render unto Cssar the things which ve Cfleaar*8.** 

J»^110 PURGATORY, Canto VI. 055 

O German Albert !* who abandon'st her 

That is grown savage and unmanageable, 

When thou shouldst clasp her flanks with forke«l heek 

Just judgment from the stars fall on thy blood ; 

And be it strange and manifest to all ; 

Such as may strike thy successoi* with dread ; 

For that thy sire' and thou have sufierM thus, 

Through greedin ass of yonder realms detain'd, 

The garden of the empire to run waste. 

Ccme, see the Capulets and Montagues,* 

The Filippeschi and Monaldi,' man 

Who carest for naught ! those sunk in grief, and these 

With dire suspicion rack'd. Come, cruel one ! 

Come, and behold the oppression of the nobles. 

And mark their injuries ; and thou mayst see 

What safety Santafiore can supply.* 

Come and behold thy Rome,^ who calls on thee. 

Desolate widow, day and night with moans, 

" My Caesar, why dost thou desert my side?" 

^ O Oerman Jilberil] The Emperor Albert I. succeeded 
Adolphas In 1298, and was murdered in 1308. See Par., 
Canto xix. 114. 

> 7^ gueeesgor.] The successor of Albert was Henry of 
Lazembargh, by whose interposition in the afiairs of Italy 
our Poet hoped to have been reinstated in his native city. 

> 7%y sire.] The Emperor Eodolph, too intent on incieas* 
ing his power in Gennany to give mnch of his thoughts fc 
Italy, "the garden of the empire.'* 

* CajndeU and Montagues.] Our ears are so Aimiliarized 
to the names of these rival houses in the language of Shak- 
speare, that I have used them instead of the ** Montecchi** 
and "Cappelletti." They were two powerful Ghibelline 
families of Verona. In some parts of that play, of which 
they form the leading characters, our 'great dmmatic poet 
seems to have lieen not a little indebted to the Hadriana of 
Lnlgi Groto, commonly called II cieco d* Adria. See Walker's 
Historical Memoir on Italian Tragedy, 4to. 1799, $ I. p. 49. 

* FUippeschi and Monaldi.] Two other rival families in 

* VFhat safety Santejiore can supply.] A place between 
Pisa and Sienna. What he alludes to is so doabtAil, that it 
is not certain whether we should not read " come si cara** — 
**How Santafiore is governed.** Perhaps the event related 
In the note to v. 58, canto zi. may be pointed at. 

V Come and behold thy Rome.] Thus in the Latin Epistle to 
1h» Cardinals, which has been lately discovered in the Lan- 
rentian library, and has every appearance of being Dante*s * 
" Bomam orbem, none utroque lumine destitutam, nunc Han- 
oibali nednm aliis miserandam, solam sedentem et vidnam, 
prout snperius proclamatur, qualis est, pro modulo nostras 
ixnagints, ante mortales ocnios affigatis omnes.** Opere mlni>rt 
di Dante, tom. ill. ; Pt« 11. p. 270, 12o Hr. 1840. 

256 THE VISION 117- Jai 

Come, and behold what love among thy people : 
And if no pity touches thee for us, 
Come, and blush for thine own rei)ort. For mei 
If it be lawful, O Almighty Power ! 
Who wast in earth for our sakes crucified. 
Are thy just eyes turned elsewhere ? or is this 
A preparation, in the wondrous depth 
Of thy sage counsel made, for some good end. 
Entirely from our reach of thought cut off*? 
So are the Italian cities all o'erthrong'd 
With tjTants, and a great Marcellus' made 
Of every petty factious villager. 

My Florence ! thou mayst well remain umnoved 
At this digression, which affects not thee : 
Thanks to thy people, who so wisely speed. 
Many have justice in their heart, that long 
Waiteth for counsel to direct the bow. 
Or ere it dart unto its aim : but thine 
Have it on their lip's edge. Many refuse' 
To bear the common burdens : readier thine 
Answer uncalled, and cry, " Behold I stoop !" 

Make thyself glad, for thou hast reason now. 
Thou wealthy ! thou at peace ! thou wisdom-fraugtit 2 
Facts best will witness if I speak the truth 
Athens and Lacedaemon, who of old 
Enacted laws, for civil arts renown'd, 
Made little progress in improving life 
Towards thee, who usest such nice subtlety, 
That to the middle of November scarce 
Reaches the thread thou in October weavcst 
How many times within thy memory, 
Customs, and laws, and corns, and offices 
Have been by thee renewed, and people changed 

If thou remember^st well and canst see clear, 
Thou wilt perceive 'thyself like a sick wretch,* 

» Marcelliu.] Un Marcel diventa 

Ogni villan che parteggiando viene. 

Repeated by Alajnanni in his Coltivazione, lib. i. 

He probably means the Marcellus who opposed JnliUk 

s Many refute.] lie appears to have been of Plato's mind, 
that in a commonwealth of worthy men, place and power 
tvould be as much declined as they are now songht after and 
coveted. Kiv6vvf6ei ir6Xts M^v iya9dv h yivotro, vcpt« 
uaxiyrdy Sv tXvai rd /ir) Jpxuv, Stvirto i^¥ rd ipxtiv, IloXcr, 
Lib. A. 

> A gick toretek.] Imitated by the Cardinal de Pollgnac Ic 
lis Anti- Lucretius lib. i. 10S2. 

!Sa, 153. PURG ITORY, Canto VIL 257 

Wlio finds no rest upon her down, but oft 
Shifting her side, short respite seeks from pain. 


rhe approaeb of night hindering fhrther ascent, Sordelte 
dnfcts onr Poet apart to an eminencot from whence thrp 
behold a pleasant recess, in form of a flowery valley, seocp> 
ed oat of the monntain ; where are many famous spirita 
and among them the Emperor Eodolph, Ottocar, Xing of 
Bohemia, Philip III. of France, Henry of Navarre, Peter III 
of Aragon, Charles I. of Naples, Henry HI. of England, &nd 
William, Marquis of Montferrat. 

After their courteous greetings joyfully 
Seven times exchanged, Sordello backward drew 
Exclaiming, " Who are ye ?" — ** Before this mount 
By spirits worthy of ascent to God 
Was sought, my bones had by Octavius* care 
Been buried. I am Virgil ; for no sin 
Deprived of heaven, except for lack of faith." 
So answered him in few my gentle guide. 

As one, who aught before him suddenly 
Beholdmg, whence his wonder riseth, cries, 
•• It is, yet is not," wavering in belief; 
Such he appear'd ; then downward bent his eyes. 
And, drawmg near with reverential step, 
Caugnt mm, where one of mean estate might clasp 
His lord.* " Glory of Latium !" he exclaim'd, 
'* In whom our tongue its utmost power display'd ; 
Boast of my honor'd birth-place ! what desert* 
Of mine, what favor, rather, undeserved. 
Shows thee to me? If I to hear that voice 
Am worthy, say if from below thou comest, [orb 
/Uid from what cloister's pale." — " Through every 

Ceu lectum peragrat membris langnentibus sger. 
In latus alteme levam dextmmque recumbens : 
Nee juvat: inde oculos tollit resupinus in altnm: 
Nusquam inventa qnies ; semper qusslta : quod illl 
Primum in deliciis Aierat, mox torquet et angit : 
Nee morbnm sanat, nee fallit tsdia morbL 

I — — Where one of mean estate might clasp 
His lord.] So Ariosto, Orl. F., c. xxiv. St. 19. 

E Tabbracciaro, ove 11 maggior s*abbraccla, 
Col capo nudo e col glnocchio chino. 

> What desert.] So FrezKl : 

Qnal graxia, o qual destin m* ha fatto degnu 
Che io ti veggia. // ^nodrir., lib. iv "Mp. 

iiSe THE VISION. W-04 

Of tlittt sad region/* he replied, " thus fai 

Ajn I arrived, by heavenly influence led : 

And with such aid I come. Not for my doing,^ 

But for not doing, have I lost the sight 

Of that high Sun, whom thou desirest, and who 

By me too late was known. There b a place' 

There underneath, not made by torments sad, 

But by dun shades alone ; where mourning's voice 

Sounds not of anguish sharp, but breathes in sighs 

There I with little innocents abide, 

Who by death's fangs were bitten, ere exempt 

From human taint. There I with those abide, 

Who the three holy virtues' put not on, 

But understood the rest,^ and without blame 

FoUow'd them all. But, if thou know'st, and 3aiitfi| 

Direct us how we soonest may arrive. 

Where Purgatory its true beginning takes." 

He answer'd thus : " We have no certain place 
Assign'd us : upwards I may go, or round. 
Far as I can, I join thee for thy guide. 
But thou beholdest now how day declines ; 
And upwards to proceed by night, our power 
Excels : therefore it may be well to choose 
A place of pleasant sojourn. To the right 
Some spirits sit apart retired. If thou 
Consentest, I to these will lead thy steps : 
And thou wilt know them, not without delight'* 

" How chances this ?" was answer*d : " whoso wish'd 
To ascend by night, would he be thence debarr'd 
By other, or through his own weakness fail ?'* 

The good Sordello then, along the ground 
Trailing his finger, spoke : " Only this line* 
Thou shalt not overpass, soon as the sun 
Hath disappear'd ; not that aught else impedes 
Thy going upwards, save the shades of night. 
These, with the want of power, perplex the will. 
With them thou haply mightst return beneath. 
Or to and fro around the mountain's side 
Wander, while day is in the horizon shut" 

> J^otfor my doing.\ I am indebted to the kindness of M? 
(jyeil for pointing out to me that three lines of the orlglaal 
A^ere here omitted in the former editions of this translation. 

a T%ere it a place.] Limbo. See Hell, Canto iv. 84. 

* TTu three holy vtrt«e«.1 FUth, Hope, and Charity. 

* The reH.] Prudence, Jnstiee, Fortitude, and Tempemaei^ 
Oidy thie line.] " Walk while ye have the light, iMtdaik 

less come upon you ; for he that walketh in darkness, know 
nh not whither he goeth." Jahn xii. 3.5 

S3r«t, FURGATORY, Canto ML gaO 

My master straight, as wondering at his speech, 
Exclaim'd : *< Then lead us quickly, where thou saysi 
That, while we stay, we may enjoy delight" 

A little space we were removed from thence, 
When I perceived the mountain hoUow'd out. 
Even as large valleys' hoUow'd out on earth. 

« That way," the escorting spirit cried, << we go, 
Where in a bosom the high bank recedes : 
And thou await renewal of the day." 

Betwixt the steep and plain, a crooked path 
Led us traverse into the ridge's side, 
Where more than half the sloping edge expires^ 
Refulgent gold, and silver thrice refined. 
And scarlet grain and ceruse, Indian woo^ 
Of lucid dye serene, fresh emeralds* 
But newly broken, by the herbs and flowers 
Placed in that fair recess, in color all - 
Had been surpassed, as great surpasses less. 
Nor nature only there lavished her hues, 
But of the sweetness* of a thousand smells 
A rare and undistinguished fragrance made. 

" Salve Regina,"' on the grass and flowers, 

1 j9« large vaUeys.\ Viatores enim per viam rectam dmn 
ambniant, campam juxta viam cernentes spatiosum et pul- 
chnun, oblitiqae itineris dicnnt intra se iter per campum istnin 
fiidamns, &c Liberia VUiOy $ 28. 

' Indian wood.'\ 

Indico legno lacido e serene. 

It is a little uncertain what is meant by this. Indigo, al- 
thoogh it is extracted from an herb, seems the most likely. 
MonU in his Proposta maintains it to be ebony. 

* Freak emeralds.'} 

Underfoot the violet, 
Crocus, and hyacinth with rich inlay 
Broider*d the ground, more coIorM than with stone 
Of costliest emblem. Milton^ P. Z»., b. iv. TOOL 

Zaffir, mbinl, oro, topazj, e perle, 
E diamanti, e crisoliti e giacinti 
Potriano i flori assimigliar, che per le 
Liete piasge v'avea Tanra dii^ntl ; 
Si verdi rerbe, che potendo averle 
Qua giu me foran gli smeraldi vinti. 

JlrioetOt Ori, Atr., Canto zxxiv. st <HI 

* Tke sweeHteea.) 

E qnella ai fiori, ai ponii, e alia verzura 

Gli odxa divers! depiedando giva, 

E di tatti foceva una mistnra, 

Che di soavit& Talma notriva. Ibid, st bl 

* Salve RegtuaJ] The be^ning of a prayer to the Viisin 
It is soAcient here to observe, that in similar instances I shall 
sither preserve the original Latin words or translate them, as 
t may seem best to suit the purpose of the verse. 

200 THE VISION. 83-ni 

Here chanting, 1 beheld those spirits at, 
Who not heyond the valley could be seen. 

*' Before Uie westering sun sink to his bed,*' 
Began the Mantnan, who our steps had tum'd. 
" 'Mid those, desire not that I lead ye on. 
For from this eminence ye shall discern 
Better the acts and visages of all, 
Than, in the nether vale, among tliem mix'd 
He, who sits high above the rest, and seems 
To have neglected that he should have done. 
And to the others' son? moves not his lip, 
The Emperor Rodolplr call, who might have heal d 
The wounds whereof fair Italy hath died, 
So that by others she revives but slowly. 
He, who with kindly visage comforts him, 
Sway'd in that country,* where the water q)ringB, 
That Moldaw's river to the Elbe, and Elbe 
Rolls to the ocean : Ottocar* his name : ' 

Who in his swaddling clothes was of more worth 
Than Winceslaus his son, a bearded man, 
Pamper'd with rank luxuriousness and ease. 
And that one with the nose depress'd,^ who close 
In counsel seems with him of gentle look,* 
Flying expired, witherujg the lily's flower. 
Look there, how he doth knock against his breast. 
The other ye behold, who for his cheek 
Makes of one hand a couch, with frequent uigfas. 
They are the father and the father-in-law 
Of Gallia's bane :* his vicious life they know 

1 The Emperor Rodolph.] See the last Canto, v. 104. He 
died in 1291. 

> That eountry.] Bohemia. 

1 Ottoear.] King of Bohemia, who was killed in the battle 
of Mazohfleld, fooffht with Rodolph, August 86, 1978. Win- 
eeslaos II. his son, who saceeeded him in the kingdom of 
Bohemia, died in 1305. The latter is again taxed with luxu 
ry In the Paradise, zix. 123. 

• That one with the noee depreee^d.] Philip III. of France, 
fother of Philip IV. He died in 1385, at Perpignan, in his re- 
beat lh)m Anigon. 

• Mm ofrenUe look.'] Henry of Navarre, father of Jane 
married to Philip IV. of France, whom Dante calls "mal di 
Franda**— *<6alUa*s bane." 

• OoUia^e hane.\ G. Villant, lib. vU. cap. 140, speaks with 
equal resentment of Philip IV "In 1201, on the night of 
the calends of May, Philip le Bel, King of France, by advice 
of Dicdo and Mnsdatto Franzesi, ordered all the Italians, 
who were in his country and realm, to be seized, under pre- 
tence of seising the monev-lenders, but thus he caused the 
good merchants also to be seized and ransomed ; for whlrj< 

il3-lffi?. PURGATORY, Curro Vll. 95} 

And foal ; thence comes the grief that rends them 
" He so robust of limb,' who measure keepe 
In song with him of feature prominent,' 
With every virtue bore his gudle braced. 
And if that etripllng,* who behind him sits, 
King after him had lived, his virtue then 
From vessel to like vessel had. been pour'd ; 
Which may not of the other heirs be said. 
By James and Frederick^ his realms arc held ; 
Neither the better heritage obtains. 
Rarely* into the branches of the tree 

be was much blamed and held in great abhorrence. AnJ 
from thenceforth the realm of France fell evermore into deg- 
radaUon and decline. And it is observable, that between 
the takiLg of Acre and this seizure in France, the merchants 
of Florence received great damage and ruin of their prop- 

> Hey 80 robust of limb.] Peter III., called the Great, King 
of Aragon, who died in 1385, leaving foor sons, Alonzo, 
James, Frederick, and Peter. The two former succeeded 
him in the klDgdom of Aragon, and Frederick in that of 
Sicily. See 6. Villani, lib. vU. cap. 102, and Mariana, lib ziv. 
cap. 9. 

He is enniAerated among the Provencal poets by Millot 
Hist. Litt. des Troubadours, tom. iii. p. 150. 

* Him of feature prominerU.] " Dal maschio naso" — " with 
the mascaiine nose." Charles I. King of Naples, Cktnnt of 
Anjon, and brother of St. Louis. He died in 1384. 

The annalist of Florence remarks, that " there had been 
no sovereign of the house of France, since the time of Char- 
lemagne, by whom Charles was sur|)assed, either in militaiv 
renown and prowess, or in the loftmess of his understand- 
ing." 6. Villani, lib. vii. cap. 94. We shall, however, find 
many of his actions severely reprobated in the twentieth 

* TAat utripling.] Either (as the old commentators sup- 
pose) AInnzo 111. King of Aragon, the eldest son of Peter IIL, 
who died in 1291, at the age of twenty-seven ; or, according 
to Venturi, Peter the youngest son. The former was a young 
prince of virtue sufficient, to have justified the euloginmand 
the hopes of Dante. See Mariana, lib. xiv. cap. 14. 

* By James and Frederick.] See note to Canto iil, 112. 

* Rardy.] 

Full well can the wise poet of Florence, 
That bight Dantes, speake in this sentence ; 
Lo ! in such manner rime is Dantes tale> 
Fail selde npriseth by his branches smale 
Prowesse of man, for God of his goodnesse 
WoU that we claim of him our gentlenesse : 
For of oar elders may we nothing claime 
Bat temporal thing, that men may hurt and maime. 

Chaucer, Wife of Bathers TUs, 

Ooaipaie Homer, Od., b. il v. 376, Pindar, Nem., zL 48, and 
ikutplJeit, £!ectra, 369. 

36S 'raE VISION 123-I3b 

Doth hnmaii worth mount up : and ho ordains 

He who bestows it, that as his free gift 

It may be callM. To Charles* my words apply 

No less than to his brother m tlie song ; 

Which Pouille and Provence now w'lSi grief confeflB 

So much that plant degenerates from its seed. 

As, more than Beatrix and Margaret, 

Costanza* still boasts of her valorous spoum . 

** Behold the king of simple life and plain, 
Harry of England,' sitting there alone : 
He through his branches better issue^ spreads. 

" That one, who, on the ground, beneath the re^t 
Sits lowest, yet his gaze directs aloft. 
Is William, that brave Marquis,* for whose caust- . 
The deed of Alexandria and his war 
Makes Montferrat and Canavese weep." 

1 To Charles.] " Al Nasuto"— " Charles II. King of Na- 
ples, is no less inferior to bis father Charles I., thui James 
and Frederick to theirs, Peter III." Bee Canto xx. 78, and 
Paradise, Canto zix. 125. 

s Cottama.] Widowof Peter m. She has been already 
mentioned in the third Canto, v. IIS. By Beatrix and Mar- 
garet are probably meant two of the daughters of Raymond 
Berenger, Coant of Provence ; the latter married to St Louis 
of France, the former to his brother, Charles of Anjon, King 
of Naples. See Paradise, Canto vi. 135. Dante therefixre con 
siders Peter as the most Ulastrioas of the three moBaichs. 

> Harry of England.] Henry ITI. The contemporary an 
nalist speaks of this kins in similar terms. G. ViUani, lib. v. 
cap. 4. "fSrom Richard was bom Henry, who reignmd after 
him, who was a plain man and of good faith, bat of little 
Lonrage." With the exception of the last part of the sen- 
tence, which must be changed for its opposite, we might well 
Imagine ourselves to be reading the character of our present 
venerable monarch, (A. D. 1819.) Fazio degU Uberti, Ditta 
mondo, 1. iv. cap. zzv., where he gives the characters of oar 
Norman kings, speaks less respectihlly of Henry. CapltoU 
zxiii-zxv. lib. iv., of this neglected poem appear to deserv^i 
the notice of our antiquarians. 

* Better issw.] Edward I., of whose glory our Poet wad 
perhaps a witness, in his visit to England. ** From the said 
Henry was bom the good King Edward, who reigns la oui 
times, who has done great things, whereof we shall make 
mention in due place.** O, FiUanit ibid. 

• William, that brave Marqui*.] William, Marquis of Mont- 
ferrat, was treacherously seiaed by his owu sultiects, at Ales- 
landriajin Lcmibardy, A. D. 1390» and ended his life la prison. 
Bee 6. villani, lib. vil. eap. 185. A war ensued between the 
people of Alessandria and those of Montferrat and the Caiui 
me, now a part of Piedmont. 

.-IB PURGATORY, Canto VIIl g68 



^wo angels, with flaming swords Iwoken at the points, de- 
scend to keep watch over the valley, into which Virgil 
and Dante entering by desire of Soraello, oar Poet meets 
with joy the spirit of Nino, the judge of Gallnra, one who 
was well known to him. MeantUne three exceedingly 
bright stars appear near the pole, and a serpent creeps 
subtly into the valley, bnt flees at hearing the approach of 
those angelic guards. Lastly, Ckmrad Malasplna predicts 
to our Poet his fntore banishment. 

Now was the hour that wakens fond desire 
lu men at sea, and melts their thoughtful heart 
Who in the mom have bid sweet friends farewell, 
And pilgrim newly on his road with love 
Thrills, if he hear the vesper bell from far,' 
That seems to mourn for the expiring day :' 
When I, no longer taking heed to hear. 
Began, with wonder, from those spirits to mark 
One risen from its seat, which with its hand 
Audience implored. Both palms it join'd and raised. 
Fixing its steadfast gaze toward the east. 
As teUixig God, " I care for naught beside." 

" Te Lucis Ante,"* so devoutly then 
Came from its lip, and in so soft a strain, 
That all my sense^ in ravishment was lost. 
And the rest after, softly and devout, 
FoUowM through all the hymn, with upward gaze 
Directed to the bright supernal wheels. [keer* : 

Here, reader!* for the truth make thine ryes 

1 Hear the veaper bell from far.] 

I hear the &r-off curfeu sound. Milton* b Pent&roao- 
s Tkat teem* to mourn for the expiring day.] 
The curfew tolls the knell of parting day. 

Oray*s Elegy. 

giomo — che si muore 

Is flrom Statins : 

Jam moriente die. Sylv.^ I. iv. 6. 3. 

* Te Lueio Ante.] *' Te lucis ante terminum," says Lona- 
baidi, is the first verse of the hymn sung by the church in 
die last part of the sacred ofllce termed complete, a service 
vhich our Chaucer calls " complin.** 

* All my eense.] 

Fece me a me uscir dl mente. 

Me surpuerat mlhi. Horat. Carm.^ lib. Iv. od. 13. 
ft Here, reader!] IiOmbardi*s explanation of this passage 
ly which the commentators have been much perplexed, 
though it may be thought rather too subtile and fine-spun. 
Jke the veil itself spoken of in the text, cannot be denied 
the praise of extraordinary Ingenuity. * This admonitiou 
r»f the poet to his reader,** he observes " seems to relate to 

264 THE VISION. aiMt 

For of so subtle texture is this veil, 

That thou with ease mayst pass it through uiiiniirk*J 

I saw that gentle banc silently next 
Look up, as if in expectation held, 
Pale and in lowly gruise : and, from on high, 
I saw, forth issuing descend beneath, 
Two angels, with two fianie-illumined Eworde, 
Broken and mutilated of their points. 
Green as the tender leaves but newly bom. 
Their vesture was, the which, by wings as green 
Beaten, they drew behind them, .fann'd in air. 
A little over us one took his stand ; 
The other lighted on the opposing hill ; 
So that the troop were in the mi^ contained. 

Well I descried the whiteness on their heads 
But in their visages the dazzled eye 
Was lost, as faculty^ that by too much 
Is overpower'd. " From Mary's bosom both 
Are come," exclaim'd Sordello, " as a guard 
Over the vale, 'gainst him, who hither tends. 
The serpent." Whence, not knowing by which patli 
He came, I tum'd me round ; and closely press'd. 
All frozen, to my leader's trusted side. 

Sordello paused not : ** To the valley now 
(For it is time) let us descend ; and hold 

what has been before said, that these spirits sung the wholo 
of the hynin *Te lucis ante terminum* throughout, even that 
^cond strophe of it — 

Procul recedant somnia, 
Et noctinin phantasmata, 
Hostemque nostrum cominrime, 
Ne poliuantur corpora ; 

and he must imply, that these souls, being incorporeal, did 
not offer up this petition on their own account, but on ours, 
who are vet in this world ; as he afterwards malces those other 
spirits, who repeat the Pater Noster, expressiy declare, wheu 
after that prayer they add, 

This last petition, dearest Lord ! is made 
Not for ourselves, &c. Canto xl. 

As, therefore, if we look through a very fine veil, the tight 
easily passes on, without perceiving it, to objects that lie on 
the other side; so here the poet fears that oar mind's eye 
^ay insensibly pass on to contemplate these spirits, as if they 
were praying for the relief of their own wants ; without dis- 
covering the veil of our wants, with which they invest them* 
Reives in the act of offering up this prayer." 
1 ^j faeultif.] 

My earthly by his heavenly overpower'd 

As with an object, that excels the sense, 

IteuOed and spenL MUtont P. Z.., b. %1ii tST 

€5-13 PURGATORY, Canto VUI. 205 

Converse with thoee great shadows : haply much 
Their sight may please ye." Only three stepo down 
Methin^ I measured, ere I was beneath, 
And noted one who look'd as with desire 
To know me. Time was now that air grew dinv 
Yet not so dim, that, 'twixt his eyes and mine, 
It clear'd not up what was conceal'd before. 
Mutually towards each other we advanced. 
Nino, thou courteous judge !^ what joy I felt, 
When I perceived thou wert not with the bad. 

No salutation kind on either part 
Was left unsaid. He then inquired : " How ^ong, 
Since thou arrivedst at the mountain*s foot, 
Over the distant waves ?" — " Oh !" answer'd I, 
'* Through the sad seats of wo this mom I came ; 
And still in my first life, thus journeying on. 
The other strive to gain." Soon as they heard 
My words, he and Sordello backward drew, 
As suddenly amazed. To Virgil one. 
The other to a spirit tum'd, who near 
Was seated, crying: <* Conrad 9 up with speed: 
Come, see what of his grace high God hath will'd.** 
Then turning round to me : '* By that rare mark 
Of honor, which thou owest to him, who hides 
So deeply his first cause it hath no ford ; 
When thou shalt be beyond the vast of waves, 
Tell my Giovanna,' that for me she call 
There, where reply to innocence is made. 
Her mother,* I believe, loves me no more ; 

1 J^inoy thou courteous judge.] Nino di Gallnra de' Viscontl 
nephew to Count Ugolino oe' Gherardeschi, and betrayed by 
bim. See Notes to Hell, Canto xzxlii. 

s Conrad.] Currado, father to Marcello Malaspina. 

3 My Oiovanna.] The daughter of Nino, and wife of Ric- 
cardo da Camino of Trevigi, concerning whom see Paradise, 
c. ix. 43. 

* Her mother.] Beatrice, Marchioness of £ste, r»ife of 
Nino, and atler his death married to Guleazzo de* Viscontl 
of Milan. It is remarked by Lombardi, that the time v/hir-ti 
Dante assigns to this Journey, and conseuuently to chis col- 
loquy with Nino Visconti, the beginning, that is, of April, is 
prior to the time which Eemardinu Corio, in his history of 
Milan, part the second, fixes for the nuptials of lieatric^ 
with GaJeazzo ; for he records her having been betrothed to 
that prince alter the May of this year, (1300,) and her h<tving 
been solemnly espoused at Modena on the 29th of Jane. 
Besides, however, the greater credit due to Dante, on ac- 
count of his having lived at the time when these evenui 
hai^ned, another circumstance in his favor is the dfscre))- 
ancy remarked by Giovambatista Giraldi (Commentar. delic 
yjm Ui Ferroni) iu those writers by whom the history oi 


i66 THE VISlOiN. 74-«i 

Since she has changed the white and wimpled fotds. 
Which she is doom'd once more with grief to wiali 
By her it easily may be perceived, 
»Huw long in woman lasts the flame of love. 
If sight and touch do not relume it oft 
For her so fair a burial will not make 
The viper,* which calls Milan to the field, 
As had been made by shrill Gallura's bird.'" 

He spoke, and in his visage took the stamp 
Of that right zeal, which with due temperature 
Glows in the bosom. My insatiate eyes 
Meanwhile to heaven had travell'd, even there 
Where the bright stars are slowest, as a wheel 
Nearest the axle ; when my guide inquired : 
" What there aloft, my son, has caught thy gaze?'* 

I answer*d : '* The three torches,* with which .lere 
The pole is all or. fire." He then to me : 
" The four respleudent stars, thou saw'st this mom, 
Are there beneath ; and these, risen in their stead " 

While yet he spoke, Sordello to himself 
Drew him, and cried : " Lo there our enemy •*' 
And with his hand pointed that way to look 

Along the side, where barrier none arose 
Around the little vale, a serpent lay. 
Such haply as gave Eve the bitter food.^ 
Between the grass and flowers, the evil snake 

Beatrice*8 life has been recorded. Notbinff caa set the 
general accuracy of our Poet, as to historical facts, in a 
stronger point of view, than the difficulty there Is in con 
victing him of even so slight a deviation from it as Is here 

1 The white and toimpled folds.] The weeds of widow 

* 7%e viper.] The arms of Galeazzo and the ensign of the 

s Shrill Oallura*9 bird.] The cock was the ensign of Gal- 
lura, Nino*s province in Sardinia. Hell, xxii. 80, and notes. 
It is not known whether Beatrice had any further cause to 
resret her nuptials with Galeazzo, than a certain shaino 
which appears, however unreasonably, to have attached to a 
becond marriage. 

* T%e three torches.] The three evangelical virtues, Faith, 
Hope, and Charity. These are supposed to rise in the even- 
ing, in order to denote their belonging to the contemplative; 
as the four others, which are made to rise in the momlag. 
were probably intended to signify that the cardinal virtues 
belong to the active life : or perhans It may mark the sncees- 
■Ion, in order of time, of the Gospel to the heathen system of 

* 8udk haplf as gave Eve the hitter food.] Compare M11Iod*« 
dtescription of that serpent in the ninth book of the Faiadiae 


l»-ia4- PURGATCRY, Canto VIli 267 

Came on, reverting oft lus lifted head ; 
And, as a beast that nnootbB its polish'd coat, 
licking his back- I saw not, nor can tell, 
How those celestial falcons from their seat 
Moved, but in motion each one well desciied. 
Hearing the air cnt by their verdant plumes. 
The serpent fled ; and, to their stations, back 
The angels up retum'd with equal flight. 

The spin't, (who to Nino, when he call'd. 
Had come,) from viewing me with fixed ken, 
Thr.iugh all that conflict, loosen'd not his sight 

" So may the lamp,' which leads thee up on high, 
Find, la thy free resolve, of wax so much, 
As may suffice thee to the enamell'd height," 
It thfm began : " If any certain news 
Of Valdims^ja' and the neighbor part 
Thou know'st, tell me, who once was mighty there. 
They callM me Conrad Malaspina ; not 
That old one ;* but from him I sprang. The love 
I bore my people is now here refined.'' 

" In your domains," I answer'd, " ne'er was I. 
But, through all Europe, where do those men dwelli 
To whom their glory is not manifest 7 
The fame, that honors your illustrious house. 
Proclaims the nobles, and proclaims the land ; 
So that he knows it, who was never there. 
I swear to you, so may my upward route 
Prosper, your honor'd nation not impairs 
The value of her co^r and her sword. 
Nature and use give her such privilege. 
That while the world is twisted from his course 
By a bad head, she only walks aright, 
Aiid has the evil way in scorn." He then : 
*' Now pass thee on : seven times the tired sun^ 
Aevists not the couch, which with four feet 

1 Mof tie lamp.} **Maj the divine grace find so hearty b 
co-operation on ttio part of thy own will, as sliall enable thc€ 
to ascend to the terrestrial paradise, which is on the top of 
this monntain.** 

* Faldimagra.'] See Hell, Canto xxiv. 144, and notes. 

* T^t old one.'] An ancestor of Conrad Malaspina, who 
fi'as also of tliat name. 

^ Seven tines the tired sun.] *' The sun shall not enter into 
Jie constellation of Aries seven times more, before thon shall 
have still better cause for the good opinion thon expresses* 
of Valdimagra, in tlie idnd reception thon shalt there mee, 
with.*' Dante was hospitably received by the Marchesc 
Slaxcello, or Morello Malaspina, doring his iMuiishnent, A. H 

j|>8 THE VISION. 1S5-I88 

The forked Aries covers, ere that kind 
Opinioa shall be nail'd mto thy brain 
With stronger nails than others speech call drivo : 
If the sure course of judgment be not stay*d '* 

■ ^\/WN/V* \*V\/>^V%/\'WV > 



Uante Is carried up the mountain, asleep and dreaming, by 
Lucia ; and, on wakening, finds himself, two hours aftei 
sunrise, with Vlrgii, near the gate of Purgatory, thioogh 
which they are admitted by the angel deputed by Saint 
Peter to keep it. 

Now the fair consort of Tithonus old,^ 
Arisen from her mate's beloved arms, 
Look'd palely o'er the eastern cliff; her brow, 
Lucent with jewels, elitter'd, set in sign 
Of that chill animal,' who with his train 
Smites fearful nations : and where then we were. 
Two steps of her ascent the night had pass'd ; 
And now the third was closing up its wing,* 

1 JVoio the fair consort of Tithonus old.] 

La concnbina di Titone antico 

Bo Tassoni, Secchia Rapita, c. viii. st. 15. 

La puttanella del canuto amante. 

Venturi, after some of the old commentators, interprets this 
to mean an Aurora, or dawn of the moon ; but this seems 
highly improbable. From what follows it may be conjec- 
tured, that our Poet intends us to understand tliat it was now 
near the break of day. 

* O/ that chill animal.) The scorpion. 

* The third was elostng up its toing.] The night belof) 
divided into four watches, I think he may mean that ihu 
third was past, and the fourth and last was begun, so ttni 
there might lie some faint glimmering of morning twilight^ 
and not merely, as Lomliardi supposes, that tlie third waaoli 
was drawing towards its close, which would ftlll leave ua 
Insormountable difficulty in the first verse. At the begtn- 
ling of Canto xv. our Poet makes the evening eommenop 
three hours before sunset, and he may now consider the 
dawn as beginning at the same distance from sunrise. Those 
who would have the dawn, spoken of in the first verse of the 
{wosent Canto, to signify the risinc of the moon, construe 
the *' two steps of her ascent which the night had pasa'd,*' into 
as many hours, and not watches ; so as to make it now about 
the third hour of the night The old Latin annotator on the 
Monte Cassino MS. alone, as for as I know, supposing the 
ilvlsion made by St. Isidore (Orlg., lib. 5) of the night Into 
leven parts to be adopted by our Poet, concludes that it wai> 

^-84. PURGATORY, Cantu IX. 269 

When I, who had so much of Adam with me, 
Sank down upon the graas, overcome with sleep. 
There where all five' were seated. In that hour, 
When near the dawn the swallow her sad lay, 
Remembering hapLy ancient grief,' renews ; 
And when our minds, more wanderers from the flenli 
And leas by tlionght restram'd, are, as 't were, full 
Of holy divination in their dreams ; 
Then, in a vision, did I seem to view 
A golden-feather'd eagle* in the sky. 
With open wings, and hovering for descent ; 
And I was in that place, methought, from whence 
Young Ganymede, from his associates 'reft, 
Was snatched aloft to the high consistory. 
" Perhaps," thought I within me, " here alone 
He strikes his quarry, and elsewhere disdains 

the third of these ; and he too, therefore, is for the Innai 
dawn. Rosa Morando iDgenuoosly confesses, that to hint 
the whole passage is ** non espIicabUe o aiineno difficillimo,*' 
inexplicable, or, at best, extremely difficult. 

1 AUfivcl Virgil, Dante, Bordello, Nino, and Cunado Ma- 

s R em e mb ering kaaly ancient grief.] Progne haying been 
changed into a swallow after the outrage done her by Tcrens 
Bee Ovid, Metani., lib. vi. 

* A golden-featker'd eagle.] So Chaucer, in the House of 
Fame, at the conclusion of the first book and beginning of 
the second, represents himself carried up by the **griii: 
tiaweft** of a golden eagle. Much of his description is closely 
imitated from Dante :— 

Methought I saw an eagle sore. 

• ••••■ 

It was of golde and shone so bright. 
That never sawe men soche a sight. 

7A« Smue «/ Asm, b. k 

This eagle, of which I have yoa tolde. 

That with fethirs shone al of golde, 

Whlche that so hie gan to sore, 

I gan beholdin more and mora 

To seen her beautee and the wonder, 

But never was that dente of thonder, 

Ne that things that men caliin foudre. 

That smite sometime a toure to pondre. 

And in his swifte comminge brend, 

Tliat so swithe gan downwarde dlscenoo 

As this foule whan that it behelde, 

That I a ronme was In the felde, 

And with his grim pawes stronge. 

Within his sharpe aailis longe. 

Me fleyng at a swappe he hent, fcc. Hid. b. 11 

Avis Candida columbc slmiUs advenfens ne\ 

onuiani capitis suo me ore apprehendens ferre sublimen cepit. ' 
MnieiViwie ( 1. 


To pounce upon the prey." Therewith, it saemM^ 

A little wheeling in his aery tour, 

Terrible as the lightning, rush'd he down. 

And snatch'd me upward even to the fire. 

There both, I thought, the eagle and myself. 

Did bum ; and so intense the imagined flames. 

That needs my sleep was broken off. As erst 

Achilles shook himself, and round him roll'd 

His waken'd eyeballs, wondering where he was, 

Whenas his mother had from Chiron fled 

To Scyros, with him sleeping in her arms ; 

(There' whence the Greeks did after sunder him ;) 

E'en thus I shook me, soon as from my face 

The slumber parted, turning deadly pale. 

Like one ice-struck with dread. Sole at my side 

My comfort stood : and the bright sun was now 

More than two hours aloft : and to the sea 

My looks were tum'd. " Fear not," my master crieJl 

" Assured we are at happy point. Thy strength 

Shrink not, but rise dilated. Thou art come 

To Purgatory now. Lo ! there the cliff 

That circling bounds it. Lo ! the entrance theroa 

Where it doth seem disparted. Ere the dawn 

Usher'd the daylight, when thy wearied soul 

Slept in thee, o'er the flowery vale beneath 

A lady came, and thus bespake me : < I 

Am Lucia.* Sufier me to take this man. 

Who slumbers. Easier so his way shall speed.' 

Sordello and the other gentle shapes 

Tarryingrshe bare thee up: and, as day shone. 

This summit reach'd : and I pursued her stepsi 

Here did she place thee. First, her lovely eyes 

That open entrance show'd me ; then at once 

S!ie vanish'd with thy sleep." Like one, whose donbU 

Are chased by certainty, and terror turn'd 

To comfort on discovery of the truth, 

Such was the change in me : and as my guide 

Ueheld me fearless, up along the cliff 

He moved, and I behind him, towards the height 

Reader ! thou markest how my theme doth rise ; 
Sot wonder therefore, if more artfully 
I prop the structure. Nearer now we drew, 
Arrived whence, in that part, where first a breach 
As of a wall appear'd, I could descry 

> T%ere.] Mr. Darley has noted the omlssloa of this line in 
die precediBK editions. 
« Lueia. t See Hell, c 11. 97, nnd Parailise, c. xtzU. 

•»-i(W f URGATORY, Canto IX. 971 

A portal, aud three steps beneath, that led 

For inlet there, of different color each ; 

And one who watch'd, but spake not yut a wonL 

As more and more mine eye did stretch ito view, 

I mark'd him seated on the highest step, 

In visage such, as past my power to bear. 

Grasp'd in his hand, a naked sword glanced back 

The rays so towards me, that I oft in vain 

My sight directed. " Speak, from whence ye stand ;** 

He cried: "What would ye? Where is your escort? 

Take heed your coming upward harm ye not." 

" A heavenly dame, not skilless of these things," 
Replied the instructor, " told us, even now, 
* Pass that way : here the gate is.' " — ** And may she: 
Befriending, prosper your ascent," resumed 
The courteous keeper of the gate : " Come then 
Before our steps." We straightway thither came. 

The lowest stair' was marble white, so smooth 
And polish'd, that therein my mirror'd form 
Distinct I saw. The next of hue more dark 
Than sablest grain, a rough and singed block, 
Crack*d lengthwise and across. The third, that luy 
Massy above, seem'd porphyry, that flamed 
Red as the life-blood spouting from a vein. 
On this God's angel either foot sustain'd. 
Upon the threshold seated, which appear'd 
A rock of diamond. Up the trinal steps 
My leader cheerly drew me. " Ask," said he, 
" With humble heart, that he unbar the bolt." 

Piously at his holy feet devolved 
I cast me, praying him for pity's sake 
That he would open to me ; but first fell 
Thrice on my bosom prostrate. Seven times^ 
The letter, that denotes the inward stain. 
He, on my forehead, with the blunted point 
Of his drawn sword, inscribed. And ** Look," he cried, 
*• When enter'd, that thou wash these scars away." 

Ashes, or earth ta'en dry out of the ground, 

> The lowest atair.} By the white step is meant the dis- 
tinctness with which the consciences of the penitent reflects 
bis offences; by the burnt and cracked one, his contrition 
on their acconnt ; and by that of porphyry, the fervor with 
which he resolves on the future pursuit of*^ piety and virtoe. 
Hence, no doubt, Milton describing " the gate of heaven.** 
P. L., b. 111. 516. 

Each stair mysteriously was meant. 

s Seven time*.] Beven P's, to denote the seven sins (Peo 
Rata) of which he was to be cleansed in his passage throcgfa 

272 THE VISION. 107-120 

Were of oue color with the robe he wore. 
From underneath that vestment forth he drew 
Two keys/ of metal twain : the one was gold. 
Its fellow silver. With the pallid first, 
And next the bumish'd> he so ply'd the gate. 
As to content me well. " Whenever one 
Faileth of these, that in the key-hole straight 
It turn not, to this alley then expect 
Access in vain." Such were the words he spake 
" One is more precious :' but the other needs 
Skill and sagacity, large share of each, 
Ere its good task to disengage the knot 
Be worthily performed. From Peter thesr 
I hold, of him instructed that I err 
Rather in opening, than in keeping fast ; 
So but the suppliant at my feet implore ** 

Then of that hallow'd gate he thrust the doot. 
Exclaiming, " Enter, but this warning hear : 
He forth again departs who looks behind " 

As in the hinges of that sacred ward 
The swivels turn*d, sonorous metal strong, 
Harsh was the grating f nor so surlily 
Roar'd the Tarpeian,* when by force bereft 
Of good Metellus, thenceforth from his loss 

■ ■ I ■ ■■ I I ■ ■ M 11^ I II I ■ I ■■■■ ^■■i ■■■■■■■ I n 11 ■■ ■ — 

1 Two keys.] Lombardi remarks, that painters lia\c 
usaally drawn Saint Peter %vith two keys, the one of go<4! 
and the other of silver ; but that Nlccolo Alemanni, in liia 
Dissertation de Paiietinis Lateianensibns, prodnces instances 
of his beUig represented with one key, and with three. We 
have here, however, not Saint Peter, bat an angel dejAited 
by him. 

3 One i» more precious.] The golden key denotes the dlrinc 
anthority by which the priest absolves the sinners : the ail 
ver expresses the learning and judgment reqaisit» tor the due 
discharge of that office. 

* Harsh was the grating.] 

— >- On a sadden open fly 
With impetuous recoil and Jarring sotind 
Th* infernal doors, and on their hin^Ls grate 
Harsh thunder. MUton^ P / , r<. U fen 

* The Tlarpeian.] 

Protinus abducto patuerunt templa Mctello. 
Tunc nipes Tarpeia sonat : magnoque recln»as 
Testatur stxldore fores : tunc conditus imo 
Eruitur templo multis intactus ab annis 
Roman! census populi, iLC Lucant Ph., lib. iii. 157. 

The tribune with unwilling steps withdrew. 

While impious hands the rude assault renew ; 

The brazen gates with thundering strokes resound 

And the Tarpeian mountl^n rings around 

At length the sacred storehouse, open laid. 

The hoarded wealth of ages past display*d. Rous 

131-138. PURGATORY, Canto X. 973 

To leanness doom'd. Attentively I tum'd. 

Listening the thunder that first issued forth ; 

And " We praise thee, O God,'' methought I beardi 

In accents blended with sweet melody. 

The strains came o'er mine ear, e'en as the sound 

Of choral voices, that in solemn chant 

With organ' mingle, and, now high and clear 

Come swelling, now float indistinct away. 



Being admitted at the gate of Purgatory, our Poejs ascend a 
winding path up the rock, till they reach an open and level 
space that extends each way round the mountain. On the 
side that rises, and which is of white marble, are seen art- 
fully engraven many stories of humility, which while they 
are contemplating, there approach the souls of those who 
expiate the sin of pride, and who are bent down beneatli 
the weight of heavy stones. 

When we had pass'd the threshold of the gate, 
(Which the soul's ill affection doth disuse. 
Making the crooked seem the straighter path) 
I heard its closing sound. Had mine eyes tum'd, 
For that offence what plea might have avail'd ? 

We mounted up the riven rock, that wound'* 
On either side alternate, as the wave 

I Org-an.} Organs were used in Italy as early as in the sixtli 
century. Bee Tiraboschi, Stor. della Lett. Ital., 4to. vol. iii. 
lib. iii. cap. i. $ 11, where the foUowine description of that 
instrument is quoted from Cassiodorus, In Psalm. 150: — "Or- 
ganum itaqne est quasi tunis diversis fistulis fabricata, quibus 
natu follium vox copiosissima destinatur, et ut earn modulatio 
decora componat, Unguis quibusdam ligneis ab interiore parte 
eonstruitur, quas disciplinabiliter Magistrorum digiti repri- 
nientes grandisonam efficiunt et snavisonam cantilenam." If 
I remember right there is a passage in the Emperor Julianas 
v/fitings, which shows that the organ was not unknown iu 
his time. 

> Tkat wifujid.'] Ventnrl justly observes, that the Padrs 
d* Aquino has misrepresented the sense of this passage in It! 1 

dabat ascensum tendentibus ultra 

Scissa tremensqne sllex, tenuique erratica motu. 

TIm verb ** muover" is used in the same signification in Xhe 
Infismo, Canto xviii. 21. 

Cos! da imo della roccia scogli 

from the rock*s low base 

Thus flinty paths advanced 

M ndther place is actual motion intended to 00 exprcdaeJ. 

274 THE VISION. »~tt 

Flies and advances. *' Here some little an 
Behooves us," said my leader, " tliat our stepe 
Observe the varying flexure of the path." 

Thus we so slowly sped, that with cleft orb 
The moon once more overhangs her watery couch, 
Ere we that strait have threaded. But when free. 
We came, and open, where the mount above 
One solid mass retires ; I spent with toil;' 
And both uncertain of the way, we stood, ' 
Upon a plain more lonesome than the roads 
That traverse desert wilds. From whence the brinh 
Borders upon vacuity, to foot 
Of the steep bank that rises still, the space 
Had measured thrice the stature of a man : 
And, distant as mine eye could wing its flight, 
To leftward now and now to right £spatch'd. 
That cornice equal in extent appeared. 

Not yet our feet had on that summit moved. 
When I discovered that the bank, aromid, 
Whose proud uprising all ascent denied. 
Was marble white ; and so exactly wrought 
With quaintest sculpture, that not there alone 
Had Polycletus, but e'en nature's self 
Been shamed. The angel, (who came down to nnrlh 
With tidings of the peace so many years 
Wept for in vain, that oped the heavenly gaipk 
From their long interdict) before us seem'd. 
In a sweet act, so sculptured to the life, 
He look'd no silent image. One had sworn 
He had said " Hail !"^ for she was imaged there. 
By whom the key did open to God's love ; 
Aiid in her act as sensibly impressed 
That word, ** Behold the handmaid of the Lord,*' 
As figure seal'd on wax. " Fix not thy mind 
On one place only," said the guide beloved, 
Who had me near him on that part where lies 
The heart of man. My sight forthwith I tum'«I, 
And mark'd, behind the virgin mother's form, 

1 / tpent with tcil,} Dante oaly was wearied, becanae he 
»nly had the weight of a bodily frame to encumber him. 

' Hail J On whom the angel Hail 

B(Bstnw*d, the holy salutation used 
Long after to blest Mary, second Eve. 

MilUfUt P. L^ V. 387. 

** The basso relievo on the border of the second rock in 
Paigatory, furnished the idea of th« Annunzlata, piUnted by 
Marcello Vennsti from his (Michael Angelo*s) design in thi' 
«vMsty of St. G;ov. Lateran.*' Auc/t, Lecture lii., noir 

i&-€9. PURGATORY, Canto X. 275 

Upon that side where he that moved me stood, 
Another story graven on the rock. 

I paas'd athwart the bard, and drew me nea-*, 
That it might stand more aptly for my view. 
There, in the self-same marble, were engraved 
The cart and kine, drawing the sacred ark, 
That from unbidden office awes mankind.^ 
Before it came much people ; and the whole 
Parted in seven quires. One sense cried ** Nay,^ 
Another, " Yes, they sing." Like doubt arose 
Betwixt the eye and smell, from the curl'd fume 
Of incense breathing up the well-wrought toil. 
Preceding^ the blest vessel, onward came 
With light dance leaping, girt in humble guise, 
Israel's sweet harper : in that hap he seem'd 
Less, and yet more, than kingly. Opposite, 
At a great palace, from the lattice forth 
Look'd Michol, like a lady full of scorn 
And sorrow. To behold the tablet next. 
Which, at the back of Michol, whitely shone, 
I moved me. There, was storied on the rock 
The exalted glory of the Roman prince. 
Whose mighty worth moved Gregory' to earn 
His mighty conquest, Trajan the Emperor.^ 

1 That from unbidden office awes mankind.} '* And when they 
came to Nachon's threshing-floor, Uzzah put forth his hand tc 
the ark of God, and toolc hold of it; for the oxen shook it.** 

" And the anger of the Lord was kindled against Uzzah ; 
and God smote him there for his error ; and there he died by 
the ark of God." 2 Sam. c. vi. 7. 

3 Preceding.'] " And David danced before the Lord with 
all his might ; and David was girded with a linen ephod." 
2 Sam^ vi. 14. 

• Oregory.} St. Gregory's prayers are said to have deliver- 
ed Trajan from hell. See Paradise, Canto xx. 40. 

* Ttajan the Emperor.'] For this story, Landino refers to 
two writers, whom he calls " Helinando,*' of France, by whom 
he means Elinand, a monk and chronicler, in the reign of 
Philip Augustus, and " Polycrato," of £iigland, by whom is 
meant John of Salisbury, author of the Polycraticus de Cu- 
rlalium Nugis, in the twelfth century. The passage in the 
text I find nearly a translation from that work, lib. v. c. 8. 
The original appears to be in Dio Cassins, where it is told of 
the Emperor Hadrian, lib. IxLx. iu/Xec y«»aiirdf, c. r. A. 
** when a woman appeared to him with a suit, as he was on 
a journey, at first he answered her, * I have no leisure ;' but 
she crying out to kim, 'then reign no longer,' he turned about, 
and heard her cause." Lombardi refers also to Johannes Di- 
aconas. Vita S. Gregor., lib. ii. cap. 44 ; the Euchology of 
the Greeks, cap. 96; and St. Thomas Aquinas Bnpplem 
aaiest. 73, art. 5 ad 5 Compare Faeio degli UlHrtl, Dictn 
niondo, lib ii. cap tf. 

276 THE VISION. 70-1* 

A widow at his bridle stood, attired 

In tears and mourning. Round about tliem trooped 

Full throng of knights ; and overhead in gold 

The eagles floated/ struggling with the wind. 

The wretch appeared amid all these to say : 

*' Grant vengeance, Sure ! for, wo beshrew this heart- 

My son is murder'd." He replying seem'd : 

" Wait now till I return." And she, as one 

Made hasty by her grief: " O Sire ! if thou 

Dost not return?"—" Where I am, who then is. 

May right thee." — " What to thee is other's good* 

If thou neglect thy own ?" — ** Now comfort thee ;" 

At length he answers. '* It beseemeth well 

My duty be perform'd, ere I move hence : 

So justice wills ; and pity bids me stay." 

He, whose ken nothing new surveys, produced 
That visible speaking, new to us and strange, 
The like not found on earth. » Fondly I gazed 
Upon those patterns of meek humbleness. 
Shapes yet more precious for their artist's sake ; 
When " Lo !" the poet whisper'd, " where this way. 
(But slack their pace) a multitude advance. 
These to the lofty steps shall guide us on." 

Mine eyes, though bent on view of novel sights. 
Their loved allurement, were not slow to turn. 

Reader ! I would not that amazed thou miss 
Of thy good purpose, hearing how just God 
Decrees our debts be canceird. Pondei* not 
The form of suffering. Think on what succeeds 
Think that, at worst, beyond the mighty doom 
It cannot pass. " Instructor !" I began, 
" What I see hither tending, bears no trace 
Of human semblance, nor of aught beside 
That my foil'd sight can guess." He answering thus 
" So courb'd to earth, beneath their heavy terms 
Of torment scoop they, that mine eye at first 
Struggled as thine. But look intently thither ; 
And disentangle with thy laboring view, 
What, underneath those stones, approacheth : now, 
E'en now, mayst thou discern the pangs of each." 

^ The ea^es floated.] See Perticari's Letter on this passage 
Opere, vol. 111. p. 553. £d. Bol. 1833. The eagles were of 
metal ; not worked on a standard, as VlUanl supposed. 

s Ponder.} This is, in troth, an unanswerable objection tu 
the doctrine of Pni^tory. It is dMRcnlt to conceive how ilir 
best can uieet death withont horror, if they believe it moat U 
ft>llowed by immrdiata and intense suffering 

iH>-124 PURGATORY, Canto X. 277 

Christians and ]»roiid ! O poor and wretched onm 
That, feeble in the mind's eye» lean your trust 
Upon nnstaid perveiseness: know ye not 
That we are worms, yet made at last to form 
The winged insect,^ imp'd with angel plumes, 
That to heaven's justice unobstructed soars? 
Why buoy ye up aloft your unfledged souls ? 
Abortive* then and shapeless ye remain, 
Like the untimely embryon of a worm. 

As, to support' incumbent floor or roof, 
For corbel, is a figure sometimes seen. 
That crumples up its knees unto its breast ; 
With the feign*d posture, stirring ruth unfeigu'd 
In the beholder's fancy ; so I saw 
These fashion'd, when I noted well their guise. 

1 The winged tHfeeU] L'angelica fitrfidla. 

The butterfly was an ancient and weU known symbol of 
t)ie hurian soul. Venturl cites some lines from the Canzoni 
Anacreontiche of Magalotti, in which this passage is iini- 

s Moirtive.] The word in the original Is entomata. Some 
critics, and Salvini among the rest, have supposed that 
Dante, finding in a vocabulary the Greeic word jfvro/ia with 
the article rd placed after it to denote its gender, mistook 
them for one word. From this error he is well exculpated 
by Rosa Morando in a passage quoted by Lombardi from 
the Osserv. Farad. III., where it is shown that the Italian 
word is formed, for the sake of the verse, in analogy with 
some others used by our Poet; and that Redi himself, an 
excellent Greek scholar and a very accurate writer, has 
even in prose, where such licenses are less allowable, thus 
lengthened It It may be considered as some proof of our 
author's acqufdntance with the Greek language, that in the 
Convito, p. 36, he finds fault with the version of Arlstotle*s 
Ethics made by Taddeo d'Alderotto, the Florentine physi- 
cian ; and that in the treatise de Monarchic, lib. i. p. 110, he 
quotes a Greek word from Aristotle himself. On the other 
hand, he speaks of a passage in the same writer being doubt- 
All, on account of its being di^rently interpreted in two 
different translations, a new and an old one. Convito, p. 75. 
And for the word ** autentln,*' he refers to a vocabulary com- 
piled by Ugucclone Bentivegna of Pisa, a MS. that is, per- 
haps, still remaining, as Cinelli, in his MS. history of Tuscan 
wnters referred to by Biscloni in the notes on the Convito. 
Ik 143, speaks of it as being preserved in the library of S. 
nancesco at Cesena. After all, Dante's knowledge of Greek 
must remain as questionable as Shakspeare's of that lan- 
guage and of Latin. 

* jf«, to aupport.] Chillingworth, cap. vl. $ 54, speaks of 
" those crouching anticks, which seem in sreat buildings (o 
labor imder the weight they bear." And Lord Shaftesbury 
!ias a similar illastration in his Ilssay on Wit and Ilnmor- 


276 THE VISION. l«S-2fiE 

Each, as his back was laden, came indeed 
Or more or less contracted ; and it seem'd 
As he, who show'd most patience in his look, 
Wailin^if exdaim'd : " I can endure no more *' 



After a prayer uttered by the spirits, who were spokeu of in 
the last Canto, Virgil inquires the way upwards, and in 
answered by one, who declares himself to have been Om- 
berto, son of the Count of Santafiore. Next our Poet dis- 
tinguishes Oderigt, the illuminator, who discourses on the 
vanity of worldly fame, and points out to him the soul of 
Provenzano Salvani. 

« O THOU Almigrhty Father !' who dost make 
The heavens thy dwelling, not in bounds confined. 
But that, with love intenser, there thou view'st 
Thy primal effluence ; hallow'd be thy name : 
Join; each created being, to extol 
Thy might ; for worthy humblest thanks and praisr^ 
Is thy blest Spirit. May thy kingdom's peace 
Come uuto us ; for we, unless it come. 
With all our striving, thither tend in vain. 
As, of their will, the angels unto thee 
Tender meet sacrifice, circling thy throne 
With loud liosaunas ; so of theirs be done 
By saintly men on earth. Grant us, this day, 
Our daily manna, without which he roams 
Through this rough desert retrograde, who most 
Toils to advance his steps. As we to each 
Pardon the evil done us, pardon thou 
Benign, and of our merit take no count. 
'Gainst the old adversary, prove thou not 
Our virtue, easily subdued ; but free 
From his incitements, and defeat his wileb. 
This last petition, dearest Lord ! is made 
Not for ourselves ; since that were needless now ; 
But for their sakes who after us remain.'* 

Thus for themselves and us good speed implorinpf. 
riiose spirits went beneath a weight like that 

1 O thou Almirkty FiUker.} The first four lines are bor 
lowed by Paid, Mon. Magg., e. t1. 

Dante in his * Credo* has again versified the Lord*8 Praye* 
ir indeed the * Credo* be Dante's, which some have doabted 
ind in the prefkeo to Allacci*s Colleelion It is ascribed to Au 
•onlo di Femura. 

27-«S PURGATORY, Camtxi XI. 379 

We sometimes feel in dreams ; ail, sore beset. 
But with unequal anguish ; wearied all ; 
Round the fiist circuit ; purging as they go 
The world's gross darkness ofE In our l^faoof 
If there vows still be ofier'd, what can here 
For them be vow'd and done by such, whose wilU 
Have root of goodness in them?* Well beseems 
That we should help them wash away the stains 
They carried hence ; that so, made pure and light, 
They may spring upward to the starry spheres. 

" Ah 1 so may mercy-teniper*d justice rid 
Your burdens speedily ; that ye have power 
To stretch your wing, which e*en to your desire 
Shall lift you ; as ye show us on which hand 
Toward the ladder leads the shortest way. 
And if there be more passages than one. 
Instruct us of that easiest to ascend: 
For this man, who comes with me, and bears yet 
The charge of fleshly raiment Adam left him, 
Despite his better will, but slowly mounts." 
From whom the answer came unto these words, 
Which my guide spake, appeared not ; but 'twas said 
" Along the bank to rightward come with us ; 
And ye shall find a pass that mocks not toil 
Of living man to climb : and were it not 
That I am hinder'd by the rock, wherewith 
This arrogant neck is tamed, whence needs I stoop 
My visage to the ground ; him, who yet hves. 
Whose name thou speak'st not, him I fain would view ; 
To mark if e'er I knew him, and to crave 
His pity for the fardel that I bear. 
I was of Latium f of a Tuscan bom, 
A mighty one : Aldobrandesco's name. 
My sire's, I know not if ye e'er have hsard- 
My old blood and forefathers' gallant deeds 
Made me so haughty, that I clean forgot 
The common mother ; and to such excess 
Wax'd in my sconi of all men, that I fell. 
Fell therefore ; by what fate, Siemia's sons, 

SucA, whose toills 

Have root of goodness in them.] The Poet has befon 
told us, that there are no others on earth whose prayers a^ai. 
to shorten the pains of those who are in Purgatory. 

s J was of iMdwoi^ Omberto, the son of GogUelmo Aldo* 
kraadesoo, Count of Santafiore, in the territory of Sienna 
ins anoganoe provoked his conntrymen to such a pitch of 
fbry against him, that he was murdered by them at Cani 


Each child in Campagnaticoi can tell. 
I am Omberto: not me, only, pride 
Hath injuredf but my kindred all invoived 
In mischief with her. Here my lot ordaius 
Under this weight to groan, till I appease 
Grod's angry justice, since I did it not 
Among the Uving, here among the dead." 

Listening I bent my visage down : and one 
(Not he who spake) twisted beneath the weight 
That urged him, saw me, knew me straight, and 
Holding his eyes with difficulty fix'd [call'd ] 

Intent upon me, stooping as I went 
Companion of their way. " O !" I exclaim'd. 
" Art thou not Odeiigi ?^ art not thou 
Agobbio's glory, glory of that art 
Which they of Paris caU the Umner's ekiU,?" 

" Brother !" said he, " with tmts, that gayer amild, 
Bolognian Franco's' pencil lines the leaves. 
His all the honor now ; my light ol)scured. 
In truth, I had not been thus courteous to him 
The while I lived, through eagerness of zeal 
For that pre>eminence my heart was bent on. 
Here, of such pride, the forfeiture is paid.' 
Nor were I even here, if, able still 
To sin, I had not tum'd me unto God. 
O powers of man ! how vain your glory, nipp'd 
E'en in its height of verdure, if an age 
Less bright succeed not^ Cimabue' thought 

1 Oderigi.] The Illuminator, or miniature painter, a friend 
of Giotto and Dante. 

s Bologn'Mn FVanco.] Franco of Bologna, who is said tr. 
have been a pupil of Oderigi's. 

* The forfeiture i* paid.] 

Di tal superbia qui si paga il fio. 
60 in the Inferno, c. xzvii. 135. 

-^— in che si paga 11 fio. 

And Ariosto, Orl. For., e. zxii. 59. 

Frestate oik, che qui si paga il fio. 

* ■ Jf an age 

Leas bright tueeeed not.] If a generation of men do not 
follow, among whom none exceeds or equals those who have 
Immediately preceded them. *' Etali grosse ;** to which Volpl 
remarks a similar expression in Boilean. 

Villon n^t le premier, dans ces slicles grossten, 
Ti^brouiller liart confus de nos Tienz romanciers. 

Jirt Poetique, ch. i. 

* Oi'«M&«e.1 Giovanna Clmaboe, the restorer of imlnting, 
Mv born at Florence, of a noble family, m 1340, ana died in 
1300. The passage in the text is an allosion to his epitaph. 

Credidit ut Cimabos pictorB castra lenere, 
8ic tennit vivens : nunc tenet astra polL 

M-a>. PURGATORY, Canto XL 381 

To lord it over paintixig's field ; and now 
The cry is Giotto's/ and his name eclipsed. 
Thus hath one Guido from the othei' snatch d 

> The cry is Oiotto*».l In Giotto we have a proof at bow 
early a period the fine arts were encouraged in Italy, ilis 
talents were discovered by Clmabne, while he was tendlntf 
sheep frar his father in the neighborhood of Florence, and 
he was afterwards patronised by Pope Benedict XI. and 
Kobert King of Naples ; and enjoyed the society and firieiid- 
ship of Dante, whose likeness he has transmitted to posterity' 
He died in 1336, at the age of 60. 

2 One Chtidofrom the other.] Gnido Cavalcanti, the friend 
of oar Fuet, (see Hell, Canto x. 59,) had eclipsed the literary 
fame of Guido Gainicelli, of a noble family in Bologna, whom 
we shall meet with in the twenty-sixth Canto, and of whom 
frequent and honorable mention is made by our Poet in his 
treatise de Vulg. Eloq. Guinicelli died in 1276, as is proved 
by FVtntuzzi, on the Bolognian writers, torn. Iv. p. 345. See 
Mr. Mathias*8 Tiraboschi, torn. i. p. 110. There are more of 
Gnlnicelirs poems to be found in Allacci's Collection, than 
Tiraboschi, who tells us he had not seen it, supposed. From 
these I hove selected two, which appear to me singularly 
pathetic. It must however be observed, that the former of 
them is attributed in the Vatican MS. 3213, to Cino da Pistoia, 
as Bottari informs us in the notes to Lettere di Fra Guittone 
d'Arezzo, p. 171. Many of Cavalcanti's writings, hitherto , 
in MS., are said to be publishing at Florence. See Esprit des 
Joumaux, Jan., 1813. [They were edited there in that yecr, 
but not for sale, by Antonio Cicciaporci, as I learn from 
Gamba's Testi di Lingua Ital., 272.J 

Nol provamo ch* in questo cleco mondo 
Ciascun si vlve in angosciosa doglia, 
Ch* in onni awersita ventara U tira. 
Beata 1' alma che lassa tal pondo. 
£ va nel ciel, dove 6 compita zoglia, 
Zoglioso cor far de corrotto e dira. 
Or dunque di chel vostro cor sospira 
Che rallegrar si di del suo migliore, 
Che Dio, nostro signore, 
Volse di lei, come avea Tangel detto, 
Fare 11 ciel perfetto. 
Per nuova cosa ogni santo la mira : 
£d ella sta d'avante alia salute ; 
£d in ver lei parla ogni vertute. 

Jlilacci, Edit. Jiapoliy 1661 p 'JK 

By proof, in this blind mortal world, we know 
That each one lives in iprief and sore annoy ; 
Such ceaseless strife of fortune we sustain. 
Blessed the soul, that leaves this weight below 
And goes its way to heaven where it hath joy 
Entire, without a touch of wrath or pain. 
Now then what reason hath thy heart to sigh, 
That should be glad, as for desire fulfilled, 
That God, our sovereign, wili*d 
She, as He told His angel, should be giveu 
'^o bless and perfect heaTen 1 

j388 THE VISION 07, .% 

The letter'd p ize : and he, perhaps, is Lom,^ 
W]io shall driye either from their nest The uoise 

Each saint looks on her with admiring eye ; 
And she stands ever in salvation's sight , 
And every virtue bends on her its light 

Conforto giit conforto Tamor chlama, 
£ piet& prega per Dio, fatti resto ; 
Or V* inchinate a si dolce preghiera; 
Spogliatevi di qnesta vesta grama, 
Im che vol sete per ragion rlchlesto. 
Che Taomo per dolor more e dispera. 
Con vol vedeste poi la bella ciera. 
Se V* accogllesse morte in disperanxa, 
De si grave pesanza 
Traete 11 vostro cor ormai per Dio 
Che nott sia cosl rio 
Ver Talma vostra che ancora spiera 
Vederla in ciel e star nelle sne braccia, 
Danqne spene dd confortar vl piaccia. 

JiUaeeit Ediu Jfofoli, 1G61, p. 39U 

** Comfort thee, comfort thee," exclaimeth f iove ; 

And Pity by thy God abjures thee ** rest :** 

Oh then incline ye to snch gentle prayer ; 

Nor Reason's plea should Inefiectnal prove, 

Who bids ye lay aside this dismal vest: 

For man meets death through sadness and despair 

Among yon ye have seen a face so fair : 

Be this in mortal mourning some relief. 

And, for more balm of grief, 

Rescue thy spirit fh)m its heavy load. 

Remembering thy God ; 

And that in heaven thou hopest again to share 

In sight of her, and with thine arms to fold : 

Hope then ; nor of this comfort quit thy hold. 

To these, I will add a sonnet by the same writer, fVom the 
aoe-jfis printed with the Bella Mano of Giusto de* Contl. &ll» 
1715, p. 167. 

lo vo dal ver la mia donna laudaie, 

E rassembrarla alia rosa, ed al giglia 

riu che Stella Diana splende, e pare, 

Cib che lassu i bello a lei somigUo. 
V>rdi rivere a lei rassembro. Tare, 

Tutto color di porpora, e vermigUo, 

Oro, ed argento, e ricche gioie preclaiB , 

Medesmo amor per lei ramna miglio. 
Passa per via adoma, e si gentile, 

Cul bassa orgogllo, a cui dona salute, 

E fal di nostra fe, se non la crede. 
R non le pub appressare, uom che sla vile, 

Ancor ve ne dirb maggiox vertute, 

Nullo uom pub mal pensar fiuchd la veda. 

i woold fh>m truth my lady's pnise supply, 
Resembling her to lily and to rose ; 
Brighter tlum morning's lucid star she bImiwii 
Alia fair as that which lUrest is on higli 

' For note, see p. 3M. 

99, 100. PURGATOKY, Camto XL S83 

Of woridly fame is but a Uart of wind, 

That blows from dhreiae points, and shifts its iiame, 

To the bine wave, I liken her, and ikyi 
All eolor that with pink and crimson ^oww, 
Gold, lilTer, and rich stones : nay, lovelier grows 
E*en lore himself, when she is standing by. 

She passeth on so gracions and so mild. 
One's pride is qnench*d, and one of sick Is well : 
And they believe, who fiom the iUth did err ; 

And none may near her eome by harm defiled. 
A mightier virtae have I yet to tell ; 
No man may think of evil, seeing her. 

The two following sonnets of Gnido Cavaleanti may ebable 
iLe reader to form some Judgment whether Dante had 8iiffi-> 
ncnt reason for preferring him to his predecessor. GninieelM 

lo temo che la mia disawentora 

Non faccia si ch* io dico io mi dispero, 

Perb ch* io sento nel cor nn pensero, 

Che fa tremar la mente dl pama. 
E par ch* ei dica : Amor non t*as8icara 

In gnisa che ta possa di leggiero 

Alia toa donna si contare ii vero, 

Che morte non ti ponga in sua fignra. 
Delia gran doglia, che Tanima sente, 

Si parte dallo core nn tal sospiro 

Che va dicendo : spiritei faggite ; 
Allor null* nom, che sia pietoao, miro ; 

Che consolasse mia vita dolente, 

Dicendo : sinritei non vi partite. 

Jineedota LUeraria ex MSS. CodicUnu ervia 
Ediz. Boma, (no year,) v. iii. p. iSi 

1 fear lest my mischance may so prevail. 
That it may make me of myself despair. 
For, my heart searching, I discover there 
A thought that makes the mind with terror quail. 

It says, meseemeth, **Love shall not avail 
To strengthen thee so much, that thou shalt daie 
Tell her, thou lovest, thy passion or thy prayer, 
To save from power of death thy visage pale.' 

Through the ir«ul sorrow that o'erwhelms my sool 
There issues from my bosom such a sigh. 
As passeth, crying; ** Spirits, flee away.** 

And then, when I am fidnting in mv dote, 
No man so merciful there standeth by. 
To comfort me, and answer, ** Spirits, stay " 

Belti di donna, e di saccente core, 

E cavalieri armati, che sian genti, 

Centar d'augelli, e ncionar d*amorp, 

Adomi legniin mar, rorti e correnti : 
Aria Serena, quando appar I'albore, 

B biaaca neve scender sensEa ventl, 

Rivera d'acqua, e prato d'ogni fiore, 

Oro, e argento, aznrro in omamenti ; 
Clb che pub labeltate, e la valensa 

Delia mia donna in suo gentll eorag^t 

Par che mssembra vile a chi cio guaxdOi 

£84 THE VISION iai-124. 

Shifting the point it blows from. Shalt thou more 

Live in the mouths of mankind, if thy flesh 

Fart shrivell'd from thee, than if thou hadst died 

Before the coral and the pap were left ; 

Or e'er some thousand years have pass'd? and that 

Is, to eternity compared, a space 

Briefer than is the twmkling of an eye 

To the heaven's slowest orb. He there, who treads 

So leisurely before me, far and wide 

Through Tuscany resounded once ; and now 

Is in Sienna scarce with whispers named : 

There was he sovereign, when destruction caught 

The maddenmg rage of Florence, in that day 

Proud as she now in loathsome. Your renown 

Is ns the herb, whose hue doth come and go ; 

And his might withers it, by whom it sprang 

Crude from the lap of earth." I thus to him : 

'* True are thy sayings : to my heart they breathe 

The kindly spirit of meekness, and allay 

What tumors' rankle there. But who is he, [plied^ 

Of whom thou spakest but now?" ** This," he ro 

** Is Provenzano. He is here, because 

He reached, with grasp presumptuous, at the sway 

Of all Sienna. Thus he still hath gone, 

E tanto ha piu d*ogni altra conoscenza, 
Qaanto lo Ciel di qttesta terra 6 maggio, 
A slmll di natom bien non tarda. 
La Bella Mano e Rime Jintiche. Ediz. Fir., 1715, p. \9b 

Whatso is fair in lady's face or mind, 
And gentle knights caparison*d and gay, 

Singing of sweet birds unto love inclined, 
And gallant barlcs that cat the watery way ; 

The white snow falling without any wind, 
The cloudless sky at break of early day. 

The crystal stream, witii flowers the meadow Iiued« 
Bilver, and gold, and azure for array : 

To him that sees the beauty and the wwth 
Whose power doth meet and in my lady dwell. 
All seem as vile, their price and lustre gone. 

And, as the heaven is higher than the earth. 
So she in knowledge doth each one excel, 
Not slow to good in nature like her own. 

1 Hey perhaps^ is bom.] Some imagine, with miKh |Vob> 
ubility, that Dante here augurs the greatness of his own po* 
etical reputation. Others have absurdly fancied that he 
prophesies the glory of Petrarch. But Petrarch was not yel 
bom. Lombardi doubu whether it is not spoken geDeially 
3r human vicissitudes. 

9 t9%2i tuwtorg.] 

Apt words have power to swage 
Tne tiunon of a troubled mind. 

MiitmCt ScuwM Jigmdstm 

1^143. PURGATORY, Cantj XII. 265 

Thus goeth never-restiii^, since ao died. 

Bach is the acquittance nnder'd back of him, 

Who, in the mortal Ufa, too much hath dared." 

I then : '' If soul, that to life's verge delays 

Repentance, linger in that lower space, 

Nor hither mount, (unless good prayen befrit nd) 

Or ever* time, long as it lived, be past ; 

How chanced admittance was voccbsafed to him T 

" When at his glor3r's topmost height," said he, 
' Reppect of dignity all cast aside, 
Freely he fix'd him on Sienna's plain, 
A suitor' to redeem his suffiaring friend, 
Who languished in the prison-house of Charies ; 
Nor, for his sfJse, refused through every vein 
To tremble. More I will not say ; and dark, 
I know, my words are ; but thy neighbon soon' 
Shall help thee to a comment on the text 
This is the work, that from these limits freed hinJ' 



Dante being desired by Yiigil to look down on the giound 
which they are treading, observes that it is wrought over 

1 Or ever.] This line was omitted in the former editions, as 
Mr. Lyell has pointed oat to me. 

> A snitor.] Provenzano Salvaal humbled himself so far 
for the sake of one of his friends, who was detained in cap- 
tivity by Charles L of Sicily, as personally to supplicate thb 
people of Sienna to contribute the sum required by the king 
for his ransom : and this act of self-abasement atoned for his 
seneml ambition and pride. He fell in the battle of Vald 
clsa, wherein the Florentines discomfited the Siennese in 
June, 1909. G. Villanl relates some curious particulars of his 
fa!c. ** Messer Provenzano Salvani, the lord and conductor 
r4 the army, was taken, and his head cut off and canied 
through all the camp fixed upon a lance. And well was ac- 
oompQshed the prophecy ana revelation made to him by the 
Devil by way of witchcraft, but he understood it not; for 
having compelled him to answer how he should succeed in 
Che said engagement, be told him lyinely: *Thou shaltgo, 
fight, conquer not, die in the battle, and tny head shall be tiic 
highest in the camp.' And he thought to have the victory, 
and firom these words thought to remain master of all, and 
noted not the ftUacy, where he said * conquer not, die.* And 
therefore it is great folly to trust such counsel as that of the 
Devil." Lib.vii.cap.3]. 

* Tfty neigUcre toon.] "Thou wilt know in the time of 
thy banliihment, which b near at hand, what it is to solicit 
favoTK of others, and * tremble through e^ery vein,* lest thev 
^bould be refu ed thee. ' 


with imagery exhibiting varloos instair^es uf pride le- 
corded in histoiv and fable. They leave the first comlor, 
and are nsherea to the next by an angel who points «il 
^e way. 

, With equat pace, as oxen in the yoke, 
I, with that laden spirit, joumey'd on, 
Long as the mild instructor sufifer'd me ; 
But, when he bade me quit him, and proceed, 
(For " Here," said he, " behooves with sail and ctin 
Each man, as best he may, push on his baik") 
Upright, as one disposed for speed, I raised 
My body, still in thought submissive bow'd. 

I now my leader's track not loth pursued ; 
And each had shown how light we fared along, 
When thus he wani'd me : " Bend thine eyesigiil 
For thou, to ease the way, shalt find it good [down 
To ruminate the bed beneath thy feet" 

As, in memorial of the buried, drawn 
Upon earth-level tombs, the sculptured form 
Of what was once, appears, (at sight whereof 
Tears often stream forth, by remembrance waked. 
Whose sacred stings the piteous often feel) 
So saw I there, but with more curious skill 
Of portraiture o'erwrought, whate'er of space 
From forth the mountain stretches. On one part 
Him I beheld, above all creatures erst 
Created noblest, lightening fall from heaven : 
On the other side, with bolt celestial pierced, 
Briareus ; cumbering earth he lay, tluough dint 
Of mortal ice-stroke. The ThymbraBan god,* 
With Mars,' I saw, and Pallas, round their sire, 
Arm'd still, and gazing on the giants' limbs 
Strewn o*er the ethereal field. Nimrod I saw : 
At foot of the stupendous work he stood, 
A3 if bewilder'd, looking on the crowd 
Leagued in his proud attempt on Sennaar's pluhi. 

1 The THymbraangod.] Apollo. 

Si mode, quem perhibes, pater est Thymbnens Apdlo. 

Vtrr.t Oeerg., I v. 828. 

With snch a grace. 
The giants that attempted to seale heaven. 
When they lay dead on the Phlegrean plain. 
Man did appear tn Jove. 
Beawnimt and Fietcker. The Prepkeie»St act U Be. 3. 

* Scnnaar^s plain.] 

The builders such of Babel on the plain 

Of Scnniuir. Milton, P. /.., b. Ul. 46T 

3WJ8. PURGATORY, Cakiw XII. 287 

O Niobe ! in what a trance of wo 
Thee I beheld, upon that hig^hway drawn ^ 
Seven sons on eiUier side thee slain. O Saul ! 
How ghastly didst thou look, on thine own 8word 
Expiring, in Gilboa, from that hour 
Ne'er visited with rain from heaven, or dew 

O fond Arachne ! thee I also saw. 
Half spider now, in anguish, crawling up 
The unfinished web thou weavedst to thy bone 

Rehoboam !' here thy shape doth seem 
Lowering no more defiance ; but fear-smote, 
With none to chase him, in his chariot whirl'd. 

Was shown beside upon the solid floor. 
How dear Alcmeeon^ forced his mother rate 
That ornament, in evil hour received : 
How, in the temple, on Sennacherib' fell 
His sons, and how a corpse they left him there. 
Was shown the scath, and cruel mangling made 
By Tomyrifl* on Cyrus, when she cried, 
" Blood thou didst thirst for : take thy fill of blocd '^ 
Was shown how routed in the battle fled 
The Assyrians, Holofemes^ slain, and e*en 
The relics of the carnage. Troy I marked, 
In ashes and in caverns. Oh ! how fallen, 
How abject, Ilion, was thy semblance there. 

What master of the pencil or the style* [made 
Had traced the shades and lines, that might have. 
The subtlest workman wonder? Dead, the dead ; 
The living seem'd alive : with clearer view. 
His eye beheld not, who beheld the truth, 
Than mine what I did tread on, while I went 
Low bending. Now swell out, and with stiff* necks 
Pass on, ye sons of Eve ! veil not your looks, 
Lest they descry the evil of your path. 

1 noted not (so busied was my thought) 
How much we now had circled of the mount ; 

1 O Rehoboam,} 1 Kings, xii. 18. 

3 JilciMcn.] Virg., /En., lib. vi. 445, and Homer, Od., xi.32& 

* Sennacherib.] 2 Kings, xix. 37. 

* Tomyris.] Caput Cyri amputatnm in atrem humane san* 
gnine repietom coiyici Regina jabet com hac exiHrobatlon€ 
enidelitatis, Satia te, inqait, sanguine quern sitisti, cujnsqae 
Insatiabilis semper iUstL Ju§tin*f lib. i. cap. 8. 

* Holof ernes,] Judith, xiii. 

' fnatmoMttsrofthepeneUorthettifle.] 

— — inimitable on earih 
Bv model, or by shading pencil drawn. 

Milton, P. L , b. Ui. 5UD. 


And of his coune yet more the sun had spent ; 
When he, who wiUi etill wakeful caution went, 
Admonish'd : ** Raise thou up thy head : for know 
Time is not now for slow suspense. Behold, 
That way, an angel hasting towards us. Lo, 
Where duly the sixth handmaid^ doth return 
From service on the day. Wear thou, in look 
And gesture, seemly grace of reverent awe ; 
That gladly he may forward us aloft 
Consider that this (lay ne'er dawns again." 

Time's loss lie had so often wam'd me 'gainst. 
I could not miss the scope at which he aim'd. 

The goodly shape approach'd us, snowy white 
In vesture, and with visage casting streams 
Of tremulous lustre like the matin star. 
His arms he open'd, then his wings ; and spake : 
" Onward ! the steps, behold, are near ; and now 
The ascent is without difficulty gain'd." 

A scanty few are they, who, when they hear 
Such tidings, hasten. O, ye race of men ! 
Though bom to soar, why suffer ye a wind 
So slight to baffle ye ? He led us on 
Where the rock parted ; here, against my front. 
Did beat his wings ; then promised I should faro 
In safety on my way. As to ascend 
That steep, upon whose brow the chapel stands,* 
(O'er Rubaconte, looking lordly down 
On the well-guided city") up the right 
The impetuous rise is broken by the steps 
Carved in that old and simple age, when still 
The registry^ and label rested sale ; 
Thus is the acclivity relieved, which here, 
Precipitous, from the other circuit falls : 
But, on each hand, the tall cliff presses close. 

As, entering, there we tum'd, voices, in strain 
Ineffable, sang : " Blessed*^ are the poor 

^ The sixth handmaid.] CSompare Canto zxii. 116. 

> TYie Aapel stands.] Ths church of San Miniato in Flor 
ence, sitaatcd on a height that overlooks the Amo, where it 
is crossed by tha bridge Bubaconte, so called ihnn Mesne 
Rubaconte da Mandelia, of Milan, chief magistrate of Flor* 
eneo, by whom the bridge was founded in 12.77 Bee G. Vfl- 
lani, lib. vi. cap. 37. 

* Ths well-guidtd i¥2y.1 This is said Ironically of FIoiMe* 

* The rofistry.] In allusion to certain instances of ftand 
committed in Dante*s time with respect to the public aceomts 
and measures. See Paradise, Canto zvL 103. 

* Blessed.] " Blessed are the poor iu spirit, for thein Is the 
kingdom of heaven." Matth. v. 3. 

lOfr-UD PURGATORV, Canto jau. 289 

In ipiiit" Ah ! how far unlike to these 

The ftnitfl of hell: here songB to usher us, 

There shrieks of wa We climb the holy stain 

Ajid lighter to myself by far I seem'd 

Than on the plain before ; whence thus I spake : 

' Say, master, of what heavy thing have I 

Been ligfaten'd ; that scarce ang^t the sense of to!l 

Afiects me journeying?" He in few replied : 

* When sin's broad characters,^ that yet remain 

Upon thy temples, though well nigh effaced. 

Shall be, as one is, all clean razed out ; 

Then shall thy feet by heartiness of will 

Be so o*ercome, they not alone shall feel 

No sense of lalxw, but delight much more 

Shall wait them, nrged along their upward way.*' 

Then like to one, upon whoee head is placed 
Somewhat he deems not of, but from the becks 
Of others, as they pass him by ; his hand 
Lends therefore help to assure him, searches, finds. 
And well performs such office as the eye 
Wants power to execute ; so stretching forth 
The fingen of my ri^t hand, did I find 
Six only of the letters, which his sword. 
Who bare the keys, had traced upon my brow. 
The leader, as he mark'd mine action, smiled. 



They gain the second cornice, where the sin of envr !i 
purged; and having proceeded a little to the right, they 
hear voioes uttered by invisible spirits recounting famouM 
examples of charity, and next behold the shades, or soiils, 
of the envious cUid in sackcloth, and having their eyes 
sewed up with an iron thread. Among these Dante flnds 
Sairia, a Siennese lady, from whom he learns the cause nf 
her being there. 

Wc reached the summit of the scale, and stood 
Opon the second buttrew of that mount 
Which healeth him who climbs. A cornice there, 
Like to the former, girdles round the hill ; 
Sayo that its arch, with sweep less ample, bends 

Shadow, nor image there, is seen : all smooth 

> Am*# hr0ad ekaraetsrt.'] Of the seven Fs, that dettoie.1 
Ifce aaine niimber of sins (Peeeata) whereof he was to be 
dwtnsed, (see Canto ix. 100,) the first had now vanished In 
eoaseqaenoe of his having passed the place where the sin vi. 
pnJe, the cdilef of them, was exiriated. 


890 TilE VISION. 7-41 

The rarupart and the path, reflecting naugnt 
But the rock*s sullen hue. " If here we wait. 
For some to question," said the bard, '* I fear 
Oar choice may haply meet too long delay." 

Then fixedly upon th^ sun his eyes 
He fasten'd ; made his right the central point 
From whence to move ; and tum'4 the left aside 
" O pleasant light, my confidence and hope ! 
Conduct us thou," he cried, " on this new way. 
Where now I venture ; leading to the bourn 
We seek. The universal world to thee 
Owes warmth and lustre. If* no other cause 
Forbid, thy beams should ever be our guide." 

Far, as is measured for a mile on earth. 
In brief space had we journeyed ; such prompt will 
Impell'd ; and towards us flying, now were heard 
Spirits invisible, who courteously 
Unto love's table bade the welcome guest 
The voice, that first flew by, callM forth aloud, 
" They have no wine ;"' so on behind us pass'd, 
Those sounds reiterating, nor yet lost 
In the faint distance, when another came 
Crying, " I am Orestes,"* and alike 
Wing'd its fleet way. «* O father !" I exclaim'd, 
" What tongues are these ?" and as I questioned, lo! 
Al third exclaiming, " Love ye those have wrong*d 
you."* [scourge' 

*' This circuit," said my teacher, " knots the 
For envy ; and the cords are therefore drawn 
By charity's correcting hand. The curb 
Is of a harsher sound ; us thou shalt hear 
(If I deem rightly) ere thou reach the pass. 
Where pardon sets them free. But fix thine oyep 
Intently through the air ; and thou sh&it see 
A. multitude before thee seated, each 
A.long the shelving grot." Then more than erst 

> If.\ " Unless there be some urgent neocatity for UavellSue 
'ly night, the day-light should be preferred fbr that poipose.** 

* Thejf kavB no wm«.] John ii. 3. These woids of the Vir- 
gin are referred to as an instance of charity. 

3 OresUa.] Alluding to his friendship with Pylados. 

< Ijove ye thote have vrong'd you.] " Bat I say unto 3^01^ 
Love your enemies, bless them that corse you, do good tu 
them that hate you, and pray for them which desplterallyvw 
you, and persecute you." MaU. v. 44. 

* TA0 gcouri^o.] "The chastisement of envy consists la 
bearing examples of the opposite virtue, charity. As a ewl 
%nd. restraint on this vice, yon will presently hear vorv d'J. 
frrent sounds, those of threatcninjt and punishioent." 

tf^w PURGATORY, Canto XIII. 991 

I oped tiune eyes ; before me view'd ; and saw 
Shadows with gannentB dark as was the rock ; 
And when we paas'd a little forth, I heard 
A crying, " Blessed Mary ! pray for ns, 
Michael and Peter ! all ye saintly host I" 

I do not think there walks on earth this day 
Man so remoneless, that he had not yeam'd 
With pity at the sight that next I saw. 
Mine eyes a load c^ sorrow teem'd, when now 
I stood so near them, that their semblances 
Came cleariy to my view. Of sackcloth vile 
Theur covering seem*d ; and, on his shoulder, one 
Did stay another, leaning ; and all lean'd 
Against the cli£^ E'en thus the blind and poor, 
Near the confesaonals, to crave an alms. 
Stand, each his head npon his fellow's sunk ; 
So most to stir compassion, not by sound 
Of words alone, but that which moves not less. 
The sight of misery. And as never beam 
Of noon-day visiteth the eyeless man. 
E'en so was heaven a niggard unto these 
Of his fair light : for, through the orbs of all, 
A thread of wire, impiercing, knits them up, 
As for the taming of a haggard hawk. 

It were a wrong, methought, to pass and look 
On otheiB, yet myself the while unseen. 
To my sage counsel therefore did I turn. 
He knew the meaning of the mute appeal, 
Nor waited for my questioning, but said : 
" Speak ; and be brief, be subtile in thy words.'* 

On that part of the cornice, whence no rim 
Engarlands its steep fall, did Virgil come ; 
On the other side me were the spirits, their che'^ks 
Bathing devout with penitential tears. 
That through the dread impalement forced a way. 

I tum'd me to them, and ** O shades !" said 1, 
" Assured that to your eyes unveil'd shall shine 
The lofty light, sole object of your wish, 
So may heaven's grace* cleiar whatsoe'er of foam 

1 So may heaven** grace.} 

Be toeto grazia risolva le schinme 
Di vostm coscienza, si cbe chlaro 
Per easo scenda della mente U finme. 

This is a fine moral, and finely expressed. Unless the eun* 
■cienee be cleared from its imparity, which it can only tho- 
nxigfaly be liy an influence from above, the mind itself canuct 
act fipeely and cleariy. ** If ye will do his will, ye shall knov 
of the doctrine.*^ 

£92 lllE VISION 81-114 

Floats turbid on the conscience, that thencefoith 

The stream of mind roll limpid from its source ; 

As ye declare (for so shall ye impart 

A boon I dearly prize) if any soul 

Of Latium dwell among ye : and perchance 

That soul may profit, if I learn so much." 

*' My brother ! we are, each one, citizens 
Of one true city.' Any, thou wouldst say, 
Who lived a stranger in Italia's land." 

So heard I answering, as appeared, a voice 
That onward came some space from whence I stood 

A spirit I noted, in whose look was mark'd 
Expectance. Ask ye how 7 The chin was raised 
As in one reft of sight " Spirit," said I, 
** Who for thy rise art tutoring, (if thou be 
That which didst answer to me) or by place, 
Or name, disclose thyself, that I may know thee ** 

" I was," it answer'd, " of Sienna : here 
I cleanse away with these the evil life, 
Soliciting with tears that He, who is, 
Vouchsc3e him to us. Though Sapia^ named. 
In sapience I excell'd not ; i^adder far 
Of other's hurt, than of the good befell me. 
That thou mayst own I now deceive thee not. 
Hear, if my folly were not as I speak it. 
When now my years sloped waning down the archf 
It so bechanced, my fellow-citizens 
Near CoUe met their enemies in the field ; 
And I pray'd God to grant what He had will'd.* 
There were they vanquiah'd, and betook themselves 
Unto the bitter passages of flight 
I mark'd the hunt ; and waxing out of bounds 
In gladness, lifted up my shameless brow, 
And, like the merlin^ cheated by a gleam, 


Of one true city.} " For here we have no continaing clt> 
tmi we seek one to come." Heb. xitl. 14. 

a Sapia.] A lady of Sienna, who living in exile at Colic, 
was sooveijoyed at a defeat which her conntrymea sustained 
near that place, that she declared nothing more was wanting 
to make her die contented. The Latin annotatnr on the 
Monte Cassino MS. says of this lady : " fnlt oior D. Clnii c*r 
Pigezo de Senis." 

s Jind Jpraffd CM te m$U what He had wiWd.] That he* 
countrymen shoald be defeated in battle. 

* TA« merlin.'] The stmy of the merlin Is, that having 
lieen induced by a gleam of fine weather in the winter to 
escape ftom his master, he was soon oppressed by the rifpi 
yi the season. 

115-14.-. -PURGATORY, Canto XCII. 298 

Cried, * It is over. Heaven ! I fear thee not ' 

Upon my verge of life I wish'd for peace 

With God ; nor yet repentance had supplied 

What I did lack of duty, were it not 

The hermit Piero,* touched with charity. 

In his devout oraisons thought on me. 

But who art thou that question'st of our state, 

Who go'st, as I believe, with lids unclosed. 

And breathest in thy talk?" — " Mine eyes,'* said I, 

'* May yet be here ta'en from me ; but not long ; 

For they have not offended grievously 

With envious glances. But the wo beneath^ 

Urges my soul with more exceeding dread. 

That nether load already weighs me down." 

She thus : " Who then, among us here aloft, 
Hath brought thee, if thou weenest to return ?*' 

" He," answered I, ** who standeth mute beside rm: 
I live : of me ask therefore, chosen spirit ! 
If thou desire I yonder yet should move 
For thee my mortal feet" — " Oh !" she replied, 
« This is so strange a thing, it is great mgn 
That God doth love thee. Therefore with thy prayei 
Sometime assist me : and, by that I crave. 
Which most thou covetest, that if thy feet 
E'er tread on Tuscan soil, thou save my fame 
Amongst my kindred. Them shalt thou behold 
With that vain multitude,' who set their hope 
On Telamone's haven ; there to fail 
Confounded, more than when the fancied stream 
They sought, of Dian call'd : but they, who lead 
Their navies, more than ruin'd hopes shall mourn." 

1 The hermit Piero.\ Plero Pettlnagno, a holy hennit of 

* The vo beMath.'\ Dante felt that be was much luoitt 
snbject to the sin of pride, than to that of envy; and this is 
jast what we should nave concluded of a mind sucl^^ his. 

* That vain mvltUwde.'] The Biennese. See Hell, r. zzljt. 
118. ** Their acquisition of Telaroone, a seaport on the con 
fines of the Maremma, has led them to conceive hopes tA 
becoming a naval power : but this scheme will prove as cht- 
meiical as their former plan for the discovery of a snbtemt' 
neons stream under their city.** Why they gave the appol 
jition of Diana tn the imagined stream, Venturi says he 
leaves it to the antiquaries of %enna to conjecture. 

« Theifj who lead.] The Latin note to the Monte Cassino 
M8. Informs ns, that those who were to conunand the fleets 
of fhe ffiemese, in the event of their becoming a naval power, 
lost their lives during their employment at Telamone, throngi: 
the pestilent air of the Maremma, which lies near that place 

294 THE VISION l«4ii 



iJor Poet on this second cornice finds also the sonU of Gnidc 
del Duca of Brettinoro, and Rinieri da Caiboli of Romafna ; 
the latter of whom, hearing that he comes from the hanka 
of the Amo, inveighs against the degeneracy of all those 
who dwell in the cities Tisited by that stream; and the 
former, in lUce manner, against the inhabitants of Bo- 
magna. On leaving these, oar Poets hear voices recording 
noted instances of envy. 

" Sat,' who is he around our mountain windn. 
Or ever death has pruned his wing for flight ; 
That opes his eyes, and covers them at will ?" 

" I know not who he is, but know thus much ; 
He comes not singly. Do thou ask of him, 
For thou art nearer to him ; and take heed, 
Accost him' gently, so that he may speak." 

Thus on the right two spirits, bending each 
Toward the other, talk'd of me ; then both 
Addressing me, their faces backward lean'd. 
And thus the one" began : " O soul, who yet 
Pent in the body, tendest towards the sky ! 
For charity, we pray thee, comfort us ; 
Recounting whence thou comest, and who thou art * 
For thou dost make us, at the favour shown thee 
Marvel, as at a thing that ne'er hath been." 

" There stretches through the midst of Tuscany," 
I straight began, " a brooklet,* whose well*head 
Springs up in Falterona ; with his race 
Not satisfied, when he some hundred miles 
Hath measured. From his banks bring I this frame 

1 Say.] The two spirits who thus speak to each other htc. 
Guide del Duca of Brettinoro, and Rinieri da Caiboli of Ro 

3 Accost kim.] It is worthy of remark, that the Latin an- 
notatur on the Monte Cassino MS. agrees with Landlno In 
reading "a colo," instead 3f ** acoolo," and interprets 11 as be 
does : " Nil alind vnit anctor dicere de C4rio, nisi qood com 
interroget ita dalciter ut respondeat (sic) eum ad colam, \a 
est quod tantam respondeat ar.ctor eis qaod animus eoruni 
remaneat in quiete et non in suspense.*' " The author means 
to say, that the spirit should interrogate him courteously, 
that he may return such an answer as shall put a |wrsMl tn 
their suspense." Still I have retained my translation of tlM 
common reading generally supposed to be put by syncope fo* 
•* accogliio,*' *' accost him.^* 

s The one.] Guido del Duca. 

* A brcoJUei.] The Amo, that rises in Falterona, a moon- 
alia in the Apennine Its cowao is a hundred and twent| 
nUes, according to 6. Villani, who traces itaecwately. 

7Sk^. HJRGA'rORY, Canto XIV 295 

To tell you who I am were words miaipeiit : 
For yet my name scarce somids on rumor's lipw" 

" If well I do incorporate with my thought 
The meaning of thy speech," said he, who fiiit 
Addrefls'd me, ** thou dost epetik of Arno's wave." 

To whom the other :^ ^ Why hath he conceal'4 
The title of that river, as a man 
Doth of some h<»iible thing V* The spirit, who 
Thereof was question'd, did acquit him thus : 
" I know not : but 'tis fitting well the name 
Should perish of that vale ; for from the source,' 
Where teems so plenteously the Alpine steep 
Maim'd of Feloros,' (that doth scarcely pass* 
Beyond that limit,) even to the point 
Where unto ocean is restored what heaven [streams. 
Drains from the exhaustless store for all earth's 
Throughout the space is virtue worried down, 
As 't were a snake, by all, for mortal foe ; 
Or through disastrous influence on the place. 
Or else d^rtion of micfgruided wills 
That custom goads to evU : whence in those. 
The dwellers in that miserable vale. 
Nature is so transform'd, it seems as they 
Had shared of Circe's feeding. 'Midst brute swine* 
Worthier of acorns than of other food 
Created for man's use, he shapeth first 
His obscure way ; then, sloping onward, finds 
CuiB,' snarlers more in spite than power, from whA*ii 
He turns with scorn aside : still journeying down, 
By how much more the cursed and luckless foss^ 
Swells out to largeness, e'en so much it finds 
Dogs turning into wolves.^ Descending still 

1 The other.] Rinieri da CalboU. 

s F)rom the source.] *' From the rise of the Amo in that 
* Alpine steep,* the Apennlne, ftom whence Peloms in Sicily 
wu torn by a convulsion of the earth, even to the noint 
where the same river unites its w'aters to the ocean, Vmos 
Is penecnted by all." t 

* Maim'd of Pel»-UM.] Virg., ^n., lib. iil. 414. Locan, 
Phars., lib. UL 438. 

A hill 

Tom from Felorus. Milton, P. Zm, b. L S33 

* Tlkmt doth ecareely paes.] "Feloms is in few places Mgbef 
dian Falterona, where the Amo springs." LomlNurdi expuint 
dils dltteietktljt and, I think, erroneously 

* 'Midst brute ewtiu.] The people of Cksentinc. 

* Curs.] The Amo leaves Aiezzo abont four miles t3 the 

V fh$s.] So in his anger he terms !he Amo- 
^ Wolxes.' The Florentines. 

896 THE VISION. **-00 

Through yet more hollow eddies, next he meeti 

A race of foxes,^ so replete with craft, 

They do not fear that skill can master it 

Nor will I cease because my words are LeardP 

By other ears than thine. It shall be well 

For this man,' if he keep in memory 

What from no erring spirit I reveal. 

Lo ! I behold thy grandson,^ that becomes 

A hunter of those wolves, upon the shore 

Of the fierce stream ; and cows them all with dread 

Their flesh, yet living, sets he up to sale. 

Then, like an aged beast, to slaughter dooms 

Many of life he reaves, hhnself of worth 

And goodly estimation. Smear'd with gore, 

Mark how he issues from the rueful wood ; 

Leaving such havoc, that in thousand years 

It spre^ not to prime lustihood again." 

As one, who tidings hears of wo to come. 
Changes his looks perturb'd, from whatever part 
The peril grasp him ; so beheld I change 
That spirit, who had tum'd to listen ; struck 
With sadness, soon as he had caught the word. 

His visage, and the other's speech, did raise 
Desire in me to know the names of both ; 
Whereof, with meek entreaty, I inquired. 

The shade, who late addxcssM me, thus resumed 
** Thy wish imports, that I vouchsafe to do 
For thy sake what thou wilt not do' for mine. 
But, since God's will is that so largely shiue 
His grace in thee, I will be liberal too 
Guido of Duca know then that I am. 
Envy so parch'd my blood, that had I seen 
A fellow-man made joyous, thou hadst mark'd 
A livid paleness overspread my cheek. 
Such harvest reap I of the seed I sow'd. 
O man ! why place' thy heart where there doth need 
Exclusion of participants in good? 

1 Fhxes.] ThePisans. 

s Mv loords are Aoord.J It should be recollected tnatGnid*. 
itill addresses himself to Rinlerl. 

' F»r this man.] '*For Dante, who has told ns that he 
tomes from the banks of Amo.** 

* TTlf ffrand*4ni.]i Fnlciert da CaJboll, grandson of Rlnien 
da Calboll who ts here spoken to. The atrodtie& predicted 
same to pass In 1303. See G. Villani, lib. Till. c. 59. 

B What thou wit not do.} Dante having declined telling 
him his name. See ▼. S3. 

• Why piac9,'\ This will be explidned In the ennninit t/snto 

11-107. PURGATORY, Camto XIV. 297 

This 18 Rinieri'B epirit ; this^ the boast 
And honor of the house of Calboli ; 
Where of his worth no heritage remains. 
Nor his the only blood, that hath been stripped, 
(*Twizt Po, the mount, the Reno, and the shore^k 
Of all that truth or fancy* asks for bliss: 
But, m those limits, such a growth has sprung 
Of rank and yenom'd roots, as long would mock 
Slow culture's toiL Where is good Lizio ?' where 
Manardi, Traversaro, and Carpigna?^ 
O bastard slips of old Romagna's line I 
When in Bologna the low artisan, 
And in Faenza yon Bemardin* sprouts, 
A gentle cion from ignoble stem. 
Wonder not, Tuscan, if thou see me weep, 
When I recall to mind those once loved names, 
Guido of Prata,^ and of Azzo him" 

^ * Tunxt Po, ths wtauntf the Reno, and the ehore.] The bocn 
daries of ftoniacaa. 

* Fhrnew.] '^Trastallo.** Qnadrio, In the notes on the sec 
ond of the Salml Penltenziall of our author, understands this 
In a higher sense, as meaning that Joy which results from an 
easy and constant practice of virtue. See Opere di Ihute, 
Zatta ediz. torn. iv. part ii. p. 193. And he is followed by 

s Utio.l Lizio da Valbinw introduced into Booeaccio*8 
Decameron, 6. V. N. 4. 

* Manardif TVaverearo, and Carpypia.\ Arrigo Manardi of 
Faenza, or, as some say, of Brettinoro ; Pier Traversaro, lord 
of Ravenna ; and Guido di Carpigna of Montefeltro. 

A In Bologna the low ariisan.l One who had been a me- 
chanic, named Lambertaccio, arrived at almost supreme 
power in Bolegna. 

Q,nando in Bologna un Fabro si ralligna : 
Quando in Faenza un Bemardin dl Fosco. 

The pointing and the marginal note of the Monte Cassino 
MS. entirely change the sense of these two lines. There is a 
mark of interrogation added to each ; and by way of answer 
to both there is written, " Quasi dicat numquam." Fabro is 
made a proper name, and it is said of hhn : " Iste Aiit Tkxa. 
Faber de Lamliertaciis de Bononia;** and Benvenuto da 
imoia calls him **Nobiiis Miles.** I have not ventured to 
alter the translation so as to malce it accnrd with this inter 
pretation, as it must have been done in the face, t fanlieve, 
of nearly all the editions, and, as far as may be gathered 
from the silence of Lombardl, of the MSS. also wmeh that 
commentator had consulted. But those, who wish to see 
more on the subject, are referred to Monties Propoeta, torn. iii. 
pi« % under the word " Rallignare.** 

* Yon Bemardin.\ Bernardin di Fosco, a man of low on 
^n, but great talents, who governed at Faenza. 

' iVoto.] A place between Faenza and Ravenna. 
Of Alio Jkisi.] Ugollno^ of the Ubaldini family in Tos 

896 THE VISION. i09-lit 

That dwelt with ub ;^ Tigrnoao' and his troup, 
With Travenaro's house and Anastagio's,' 
(Each race disherited ;) and beside these, 
The ladies* and the knights, the toils and ease, 
That witch*d as into love and courtesy f 
Where now such malice reigns in recreant hearts. 
O Brettinoro !* wherefore tarriest still. 

1 With iw.J Lombardl claims the reading, " nosco/* Inftteac 
of ** vosco," ** with US," instead of" with yon," for hi* €i?ar- 
tte edition ; but it is also in Landino*s of 1488. 

s Tignoto.^ Federigo Tignoso of Rlmlnl. 

* 7Vaver«aro*» hou»9 and AwaMtogul'9.'\ Two noble families 
of Ravenna. See v. 100. She, to whom Dryden has given 
the name of Honoria, in the fkble so admirably paraphrased 
from Boccaccio, was of the former : her lover and the spectre 
were of the Anastagi family. See Canto zzviii. 20. 

< Tke ladiest 4«.] 

Le donne, e 1 cavalier, gli affitnnl, e gU agi 
. Che ne *nvogliava amore e cortesia. 

These two lines express the tnie spirit of chivalry. " Agl** 
is understood, by the commentators whom I have consulted, 
to mean " the ease procured for others by the exertions of 
Imight-emntry." Bat surely it signifies the alternation of 
ease with labor. Venturi is of opinion that the opening of 
the Orlando Furioso— 

Le donne, i cavalier, Tarme, gli amori, 
Lau corteaie, i'audaci imprese io canto, 
originates in this passage. 

* Courie»y.'\ ** Cortesia e onestade,** &c. Convito^ p. 65. 
** Courtesy and honor are all one; and because anciently 
virtue and good manners were usual in courts, as the con- 
trary now is, this term was derived from thence : courtesy 
was as much as to say, custom of courts ; which word, if If 
were now taken from courts, especially those of Italy, woalJ 
be no other than turpitude,** ** turpezza." 

Which oft is sooner found in lowly sheds 
With smoky rafters, than in tapstry halls 
And courts of princes, where it first was named, 
.\nd yet is most pretended. Miltou, Comtu. 

Marino hns exceeded his visual extravagance in his pla> 
00 this word. 

Ma come pub vero diletlo 1 b come 
Vera quiete altmi donar la Corte 1 
Le die la Cortesia del proprlo nome 
Solo 11 principio, il fine ha della Morte. 

Adamef c. Ix, iu 77. 

* O BreUinaro.\ A beautiftilly situated castle in Homagnii, 
the hospitable residence of Guldo del Dnea, who Is bene 
■peaking. Laadino relates, that there were several of th&b 
'hmily, who, when a stranger arrived among tlwin oon> 
tended wiA one another by whom he should be entertalaed * 
•ad that in aider to end this dispute, they set up a plllat 
with at many lings as there were fathers of families amoBf 

11W»- FURGATORY, Canto XIV. 299 

Since fonr* of thee thy family hath gone^ 
And many, hating evil, join'd their tteps? 
Well doeth he, tht t bids his lineage cease 
Bagnacayallo ;' Castracaro ill, 
And Conio woxse,' who care to propagate 
A race of Counties' from such blood as theirs 
Well shall ye also do, Pagani,^ then 
When from among you lues your demon child ; 
Not so howe'er,* Uiat thenceforth there remain 
True proof of what ye were. O Hugolin," 
Thou sprung of Fantolini's liie ! thy name 
Is safe : since none is look'd for after thee 
To cloud its lustre, waiping from thy stock. 
But, Tuscan ! go thy ways ; for now I take 
Far more delight in weeping, than in wcnrds. 
Such* pity for your sakes hath wrung my heart" 
We knew those gentle spirits, at parting, heard 
Our steps. Their nlence therefore, of our way, 
Assured us. Soon as we had quitted them, 
Advancing onward, lo ! a voice, that seem'd 

them, a ring being aaalgned to each, and that accordingly ae 
a stranger on his anival hang his honeys bridle on one of 
other of these, he became hU guest to whom the ring te- 

I BagTtacavallo.\ A castle between Imola and Bavenna 

» Caatraearo HI, 

And Conio worse.] Both in Boraagna 

' Countieo.] I have used this word here for *' Cknmts/* as 
it is in Shakspeaie. 

* Pafani.] The Pagan! were lords of Faenza and Imola. 
One of them, Machinardo, was named the Demons ftom hi.i 
treachery. See Elell, Canto xxvii. 47, and note. 

B JV*0t so howe''er.] **Yet your offspring will be stained 
with some vice, and will not afford true proof of the wortt 
of yoor ancestors.'* 

* Hvgolin.] Ugolino Ubaldini, a noble and virtuous person 
In Faenza, who, on account of his age probably, was not 
likely to leave any offlpring behind him. He is eniunerated 
among the poets by Crescimbeni, and by TIraboechi, Bfr. 
Math&s's edit, vol. L p. 143; and Perticari cites a beaatlfli 
little poem by him in the Apologia di Dante, parte IL c S7 
but with so little appearance of antiqaity that aothing less 
man the assurance of so able a critic cooid indnee cae for a 
moment to receive it as genuine. 

Y Such.] Here again the Nidobeatina edition adopted by 
I^ombardi. and the Monte Cassino MS., dlflbr Ihmi the eci:» 
tKHi reading, and both have 

91 m* ha nostra region la mente stretta 
Oar country's sorrow has sc wrong my hmrt 
TJncBd of 

81 m* ha vostra ragion, fcc. 


Like voUey'd lightning, when it rives the air. 
Met m, and shouted, " Whosoeyer finds 
Will slay me ;"' then fled from ns, as the bolt 
Lanced sudden from a downward-rushing cloud. 
When it had gi^en short truce unto our hearing. 
Behold the other with a crash as loud 
As the quick-following thunder: " Mark in me 
A.glauros,* tum'd to rock." I, at the sound 
Retreating, drew more closely to my guide. 
Now in mute stillness rested all the air ; 
And thus he spake : " There was the galling bit,' 
Which^ should keep man within his boundary. 
But your old enemy so baits the hook, 
He drags you eager to him. Hence nor curb 
Avails you, nor reclaiming calL Heaven calls,^ 
And, round about you wheeling, courts your gaze 
With everlasting beauties. Yet your eye 
Turns with fond doting still upon the earth. 
Therefore He smites you who discemeth all." 



An anffel invites them to ascend the next steep. On theli 
way Dante suggests certain doubts, which are resolved b> 
Viigil ; and, when they reach the third cornice, where the 
sin of anger is porged, onr Poet, in a kind of waking dream 
beholds remarkable instances of patience ; and soon ailef 
they aie enveloped in a dense fog. 

As much* as 'twixt the third hour's close and dawn. 
Appeareth of heaven's sphere, that ever whirls 

Whosoever finds 

Will slay me.] The words of Cain, Gen. i v. 14 
s Aglauros.\ Ovid. Met., lib. ii. fab. 13. 

* There vas the gaUinr Ht^^ Referring to what had been 
before said. Canto ziii. &. Tne commentaton remark tho 
mosiial word ** camo," which occurs here in the original j 
but they have not observed, I believe, that Dante himseli 
uses it in the De Monarchic, lib. liL p. 155. For the Greek 
word xifiw see a fragment by S. Petras Alex, in Bouth's 
BeliqiWB Sacne, vol. ill. p. 343, and note. 

* Which.] Mr. Darley has noticed the omission of this Une 
|i the former editions. 

* Heavtm calls.] 

Or ti soUeva a piik beata spene, 
Mirando U eiel, che ti si volve intomo 
Immortal ed adorro. PsCrerco, Omtons. /*voj»eatan«b 
' Hj miM*.] It want'd three hoars of sunset 

»4». PURGATORY, Cantu XV 801 

As rurtlcsB as an infant in his play ; 

So much appear'd remaining to the sun 

Of his slope journey towards the western goal. 

ETening was there, and here the noon of nig^i; 
And foil upon our forehead smote the beams. 
For round the monntain, circling, so our path 
Had led us, that toward the sunset now 
Direct we joumey*d ; when I felt a weight 
Of more exceeding splendor, than before, 
Press on my front The cause unknown, amazo 
PosBeasM me ; and both hands' against my brows 
Lifting, I interposed them, as a screen. 
That fk its gorgeous superflux of light 
Clips the diminish'd orb. As when the ray,^ 
Striking on water or the surface clear 
Of mirror, leaps unto the opposite part. 
Ascending at a glance,* e'en as it fell. 
And as much^ d^is from the stone, that falls 
Through equal space, (so practic skill hath shown ;) 
Thus, with refracted light, before me seem'd 
The ground there smitten ; whence* in sudden haste, 
My sight recoiFd. *' What is this, sure beloved ! 
*6ainst which I strive to shield the sight in vain 7" 
Cried I, " and which toward us moving seems?" 

<< Marvel not, if the family of heaven," 
He answered, << yet with dazzling radiance dim 
Thy sense. It is a messenger who comes, 

1 Beth iand».\ 

Saising his hana to save the dazzled sense. 

SoutAeif*» Thalaba^ b. ziL 
s Jii when the rajf.] 
Blent aquae tremalum labris ubl lumen aSnls 
Sole repercasstun, ant xadlantis Imagine lone, 
Omnia pervolitat late loca, jamqne snb auras 
Erigitur, summique ferit laquearia tectL 


Obnpave Apoll. Rhodius, ill. 755. 

' Jtaeemding at a glance.} 

Qmod dmnl ac primum sub divo splendor aqual 
Ponitnr: eztemplo, c<b1o stellante, serena 
Bidera respondent in aqu& radiantia mundi. 
Janme vides igitnr, qnam parvo tempore imago 
iEtheiis ex oru ad terraruni accidat oras. 

LuereLj lib. iv. 215. 

* And at mnuh.\ Lombard!, I think Justly, observes that 
iiis does not refer to the length of time which a stone is la 
lUling to the ground, but to the perpendicular line which 
it deMribes when falling, as contrasted with the angle of 
Snddence i^rmed by light reflected from water or from u 



Inviting mun*s ascent. Such sights ere long, 

Not grievous, shall impart to thee delight. 

As thy perception is by nature wrought 

Up to their pitch." The blessed angel, soon 

As we had reached him, hail'd us with glad voice * 

" Here enter on a ladder far less steep 

Than ye have yet encounter'd." We forthwith 

Ascending, heiud behind us chanted sweet, 

** Blessed the merciful,"^ and " Happy thou, 

That conquer*st." Lonely each, my guide and I| 

Pursued our upward way ; and as we went. 

Some profit from his words I hoped to win, 

And thus of him inquiring, framed my speech : 

'* What meant Romagna's spirit,' when he spake 

Of bliss exclusive, with no partner shared 7" 

He straight replied : " No wonder, since he knov/s 
What sorrow waits on his own worst defect. 
If he chide others, that they less may mourn 
Because ye point your wishes at a mark. 
Where, by conmiunion of possessors, part 
Is lessened, envy bloweth up men's sighs. 
No fear of that might touch ye, if the love 
Of higher sphere exalted your desire. 
For there,' by how much more they call it ours 
So much propriety of each in good 
Increases more, and heighten*! charity 
Wraps that fair cloister in a brighter flame.' 

" Now lack I satisfaction more," said I, 
'* Than if thou hadst been silent at the firat ; 
And doubt more gathers on my laboring thought. 
How can it chance, that good distributed. 
The many, that possess it, makes more rich. 
Than if 't were shared by few 7" He answering tlius 
** Thy mind, revertmg still to thinn of earth. 
Strikes darkness from true light The highest good 
Unlimited, ineffable, doth so speed 
To love, as beam to lucid body darts, 

1 Blessed ihe mereiful.] Matt. v. 7. 

s Romagna's spML] Gnldo del Doca, of Brettinoro, when 
A'e have seen in the preceding cantu. 

* Fbr there.] Landino has here cited, in addition to Be- 
neca and Boetios, the two following apposite oassages ftoai 
Augustine and Balnt Gregory : ** Nallo modo At mlmur aece- 
dente consortlo possestio bonitatis, qnam tanto latios qnantii 
concordiiu indlvldna socloram poasidet cantas.** J?«y««tm. 
is eivitate Dsi. ** Qui faclbus invidln carere desiderat, illan 
posseesionem appetat, qnain nnmenu possidentium non aa 



97*103 PURGATORY, Canto XV 80S 

Giving as much of ardor as it finite. 
The sempUemal effluence streams abroad. 
Spreading, wherever charity extends. 
So that the more aspirants to that bliss 
Are multiplied, more good is there to love, 
And more is loved ; as mirrors, that reflect. 
Each imto other, propagated light 
If these my words avail not to allay 
Thy thirsting, Beatrice thou shalt see, 
Who of this want, and of all else thou habt, 
Shall rid thee to the fulL Provide but thou,* 
That from thy temples may be soon erased. 
E'en as the two already, those five scan. 
That, when they pain thee wont, then kindliest heiJ." 
" Thou," I had said, « content'st me f when I saw 
The other round was gain'd, and wondering eyes 
Did keep me mute. There suddenly I seem'd 
By an ecstatic vision wrapt away ; 
And in a temple saw, methought, a crowd 
Of many persons ; and at the entrance stood 
A dame,' whose sweet demeanor did express 
A mother's love, who said, " Child \ why hast thou 
Dealt with us thus ? Behold thy sire and I 
Sorrowing have sought thee ;" and so held her peace ; 
And straight the vision fled. A female next 
Appear'd before me, down whose visage coursed 
Those waters, that grief forces out from one 
By deep resentment stung, who seem'd to say : 
** If thou, Pisistratus, be lord indeed 
Over this city,' named with such debate 
Of adverse gods, and whence each science sparkles. 
Avenge thee of those arms, whose bold embrace 
Hath clasp'd our daughter ;" and to her, meseem'd, 
Benign and meek, with visage undisturb'd. 
Her sovereign spake : " How shall we those requito^ 
Who wish us evil, if we thus condemn 
The man that loves us?" After that I saw 

1 Provide hut thou.] " Take heed that thon be healed of 
:he five remaining sins, as tboa already art of the two. 
namely, pride and envy." 

s A itame.] Luke, ii. 48. 

s Over this eitm.] Athens, named after 'A A^w, Minerva, in 
sonsequence of her having produced a more valnable gift foi 
U in the olive, than Neptune had done in the horse. 

* How ehall we thoee requiU.] The answer of Pisistcatas 
ihe tyiant to his wife, when she mged him to Inflict the pan- 
ishment of death on a young man, who, inflamed with love 
tor his danghter, had snatAed a kiss from her in pnblic. Ttie 
jiorv Is told bv Valerias Maxi nus. lib v l 

304 THE VISION. iU^ilS 

A multitude, in fury burning, slay 
With stones a stripling youth,* and shout amahi 
« Destroy, destroy ;" and him I saw, who bow'd 
Heavy with death unto the ground, yet made 
His eyes, unfolded upward, gates to heaven. 
Praying forgiveness of the ^mighty Sire, 
Amidst that cruel conflict, on his foes. 
With looks that wm compassion to their aim. 

Soon as my spirit, from her airy flight 
Returning, sought agam the thmgs whose trutli 
Depends not on her shaping, I observed 
She had not roved to falsehood in her dreams. 

Meanwhile the leader, who might see I moved 
As one who struggles to shake off his sleep, 
Exclaim'd: « What ails thee, that thou canst not hold 
Thy footing firm ; but more than half a league 
Hast traveli'd with closed eyes and tottering gait« 
Like to a man by wine or sleep o^erchai^d V* 

*' Beloved father ! so thou deign,*' said I, 
*< To listen, I will tell thee what appeared 
Before me, when so fail'd my sinking steps." 

He thus : " Not if thy countenance were maak'd 
With hundred vizards, could a thought of thine. 
How small soe'er, elude me. What thou saw'st 
Was shown, that freely thou mightst ope thy heart 
To the waters of peace, that flow difiosed 
From their eternal fountain. I not ask'd', 
What ails thee ? for such cause as he doth, who 
Looks only with that eye, which sees no more, 
When spiritless the body lies ; but ask'd. 
To give fresh vigor to thy foot. Such goads. 
The slow and loitering need ; that they be found 
Not wanting, when their hour of watch returns.'* 

So on we jonmey'd, through the evening sky 
Gacmg intent, far onward as our eyes. 
With level view, could stretch against the bright 
Vespertine ray : and lo ! by slow degrees 
Gathering, a fog made towards us, dark as nigfal 
There was no room for 'scaping ; and thai mist 
Bereft us, both of sight and tlie pure air 


hM they proceed thnmgh the mist, they hear the voloflt of 
8|rizit8 praying. Marco Lombardo, one of thaao, points 

* «f tiriffing youth.} The protomartyr Slophcn. 

1-ia PURGATORY. Canto XVI. 805 

oat to Ilante the envr of such as impate oiir actions to ne 
eessitf ; explains to him that man is endae«1 with free will ; 
and shows that much of human deprnvity results from 
the undue mixture of siMritnal and temporal authority in 

Hbll'b duimest gloom, or night unliistrous, daik. 
Of every planet 'ieft» and pall'd in doads, 
Did never spread before the sight a veil 
In thickness like that fog, nor to the sense 
So palpable aiid gross. ISntering its shade, 
liiine eye endured not with unclosed lids ; 
Which marking, near me drew the faithful gudt-, 
Offering me his shoulder for a stay. 

As the blind man behind his leader walks. 
Lest he should err, or stumble unawares 
On what might harm him or perhaps destroy ; 
I joumey'd Uirough that bitter air and foul, 
SUil listening to my escort's warning voice, 
*' Look that from me thou part not." Straight I heanl 
Voices, and each one seem'd to pray for peace. 
And for companion, to the Lamb of God 
That taketh sins away. Their prelude still 
Was " Agnus Dei ;*' and through all the choir, 
One voice, one measure ran, that perfect seem'd 
The concord of their song. " Are these I hear 
Spirits, O master?" I exclaim'd ; and he, 
" Thou aim'st aright : these loose the bonds of wrath '*' 

" Now who art thou, that through our smoke dost 
And speak'st of us, as thou' thyself e'en yet 
Dividedst time by calends ?" So one voice 
Bespake me ; whence my master said, " Reply , 
And ask, if upward hence the passage lead." 

'' O being ! who dost make thee pure, to stand 
Beautiful once more in thy Maker's sight ; 
Along with me : and thou shalt hear and wonder ' 
Thus I, whereto the spirit answeriig spake : 
M Long as 'tis lawful for me, shall my steps 
Follow on thine ; asd sinco the cloudy smoke 
Forbids the seeing, hearing in its stead 
Shall keep us join'd." I then forthwith began : 
** Yet in my mortal swathing, I ascend 
To higher regions ; and am hither como 
Thorough the feaif ul agony of hell. 
And, if so largely Grod hath doled his grace, 
That, dean l^ide all modem precedent, 

' A9 tkou.\ " As if thou wert still livine.** 

306 THE VISION. 41-lc 

He wiUb me to behold his kingiy siiite ; 
From me conceal not who thou wast, ere death 
Had loosed thee ; bnt instract me : and instnict 
If rightly to the pass I tend ; thy words 
The way directing, as a safe escort" 

** I was of Lombardy, and Marco call'd :' 
N'ot inexperienced of the world, that worth 
I still affected, from which all have tnm'd 
The nerveless bow aside. Thy cooise tends right 
Unto the summit ^ and, replying thns. 
He added, " I beseech thee pray for me. 
When thoa shalt come aloft." And I to him: 
" Accept my faith for pledge I will perfonn 
What thoa reqoirest Yet one doubt remains. 
That wrings me sorely, if I solve it not. 
Singly before it urgMi me, doubled now 
By thine opinion, when I couple that [other 

With one elsewhere* declared; each strengtheaiiig 
The world indeed is even so forlorn 
Of all good, as thou speak*st it, and so swarms 
With every eviL Yet, beseech thee, point 
The cause out to me, that myself may see. 
And unto others show it : for in heaven 
One places it, and one on earth below." 

Then heaving forth a deep and audible sigh, 
■' Brother !" he thus began, ** the worid is blind ^ 
And thou in truth comest from it Ye, who live. 
Do so each cause refer to heaven above. 
E'en as its motion, of necessity. 
Drew with it all that moves. If this were so,' 

1 I wot ofLomiardft »nd Marco eaWd.] A Venetiui _ 
tlemaiL. **L(HnlMurdo,** both was his snniaine, and denofeed 
the country to which he belonged. G. VUlani, lib. vU chb> 
190, tenns him **a wise and worthy courtier.** 

Benvennto da Imola, says Landino, relates of him, thai 
being imprisoned and notable to nay the priee of his namomk, 
he applied by letter to his friend Kiccardo da Camino, kud of 
Trevifli, for relief. Rlccardo set on foot a contribntioa among 
several nobles of Lombaidyfor the purpose ; of which when 
Marco was informed, he wrote back with much indignation 
to Rlccardo, that he had rather die than remain under obUg»- 
tions to so many benefactors. It is added that Rlccardo thmi 

riid the whole out of his own purse. Of this geneioBS maa 
have occasion to speak again in the notes to Canto vUL 71, 
tnd to Psr. Oanto ix. 48. 

s Elgewkere.] He refien to what Gnldo del Dnca had said 
in t he fo urteenth Oanto, concerning the degeneracy of his 
■om try men. 

s ^ thi» were «#.] llr. Crowe, In his Leweadon BUU has 
npressed similar sentiments with much eaeigv 

n-W, FURGATORY, Canto XVI. 307 

Free choice in you were none ; nor justice would 
There should be joy for virtue, wo for ill. 
Vour movements have their primal bent from heaveti; 
Not all : yet said I all ; what then ensues 7 
Light have ye still to follow evil or good, 
And of the will free power, which, tf it stand 
Firm and unwearied in Heaven's first assay, 
Conquers at last, so it be cherished well, 
Triumphant over all. To might'er force,' 
To better nature subject, ye abide 
Free, not constrained by that which forms in ycm 
The reasoning mind uninfluenced of the stank 
If then the present race of mankind err. 
Seek in yourselves the cause, and find it there. 
Herein thou shalt confess me no false spy. [hflds 
" Forth from his plastic hand, who charm'd be« 
Her image ere she yet exist, the soul 
Comes l&e a babe, that wantons sportively,' 
Weeping and laughing in its wayward moods ; 
As artless, and as ignorant of aught. 

Of this be sure, 

Where freedom is not, there no virtue is : 
If there be none, this worid is all a cheat, 
And the divine stability of heaven 
(That assured seat for good men after death) 
Is bnt a transient cload, diiplay*d so fair 
To cherish virtaous hope, bat at our need 
Eludes the sense, and fools our honest faith, 
Vanishing in a lie, Ate. 

do, also, his Claadriregio. 

Or sappi ben ehe Dio hs dato 11 freno 
A voi dl vol ; e, »e non fosse questo, 
Libero arbitrio in voi sarobbe meno. Lib. ii. cap. ^ 

There is much more on this subject at the conclusion of the 
eighth Capitolo of this book. C!ompare also Origen. in Gene- 
■in. Patnm Gnecor., vol. zi- p. 14. Werceburgl, 1783, 8vo., 
and TeTtallian, Contra Maxcionem, Ub. il. p. 4^. LntetiB, 
1641, fol. 

A very noble passage on the freedom of the will occurs in 
the first book De Monarchii, beginning, " £t humannm go* 
nus, potissimnm libemm, optime se habet." ** The human 
cace, when most completely free, is in its highest state of ex- 

1 TonughHerforee.'l " Though ye are snbject to a highei 
power than that of tlie heavenly constellations, even to t*w 
power of the great Creator himself, yet ye are sUil left in toe 
possession of liberty.** 

* I4k€ « ftofttf, tkat wanUnu «p0rtt«e/y.J This remindi os of 
IheBmpeiw Hadrian's verses to his departing soul. 

Animala vagnla blanaula, kc 

308 THE VISION 91-1 la 

Save that her Maker being one who dw^'^'Ub 
With gladness ever, willingly she turns 
To whatever yields her joy. Of some slight good 
The flavor soon she tastes ; and, snared by th^t, 
With fondness she pursues it ; 'if no guide 
Recall, no rein direct her wandering course. 
Hence it behooved, the law should be a curb ; 
A. sovereign hence behooved, whose piercing vicv 
Might mark at least the fortress^ and main towei 
Of the true city. Laws indeed there are : 
But who is he observes them ? None ; not he, 
Who goes before, the shepherd of the flock, 
Who^ chews the cud but doth not cleave the hooL 
Therefore the multitude, who see their guide 
Strike at the very good they covet most, 
Feed there and look no further. Thus the causr 
Is not corrupted nature in yourselves, 
But ill-conducting, that hath tum'd the world 
To evil. Rome, that tum'd it unto good, 
Was wont to boast two suns,' whose several beams 
Cast light on either way, the world's and God's. 
One since hath quench'd the other ; and the sword 
Is grafted on the crook ; and, so conjoined, 
Each must perforce decline to worse, unawed 
By fear of other. If thou doubt me, mark 

1 TTie fortress.] Justice, the most necessary virtue in thtj 
chief magistrate, as the commentators for the most part ex- 

Elain it : and it appears manifest Arom all our Poet says in 
is fint book De Monarchic, concerning the anthoritr of the 
temporal Monarch and concerning Justice, that tney are 
right. Yet Lombardl understands the law here spoken of to 
be the law of God ; the mjvereign, a spiritual ruler, and Hu 
true city, the society of true believers ; so that thefortresa, 
according to him, denotes the principal parts of Christian 

3 ffko.] He compares the Pope, on account of the union 
of the temporal with the spiritual power in his person, to an 
unclean beast in the Levitical law. ** The camel, because he 
cbeweth the cud, but divideth not the hoof; he Is unclean 
imto you.'* Levit. zi. 4. 

s TTwo suns.] The Emperor and the Bishop of Rome 
There is something similar to this in the De Monarchift, 
lib. ill. p. 138. '* They say first, according to that text in 
Genesis, that God made two great lights, the greater light 
and the lesser, the one to rule the day, and the other the 
night ; then, that as the moon, which is the lesser light, has 
no brightness, except as she receives It from the sun, so 
neitner has the temporal kingdom authority, except whal 
it receives from the spiritual government.** The fkllacf 
ot* which reasoning (If such it can be called) ho pnotudn If 

Iie-196. PURGATCRY, Canto XVI. 300 

l*he blade k each herb is judged of by iU seed. 
That land,' thioagh which Adice and the Po 
Their waters roll, was once the residence 
Of courtesy and yalor, ere the day* 
That frown'd on Frederick ; now secure may pass 
lliose limits, whosoe'er hath left, for shame. 
To talk with good men, or come near their haunt& 
Three aged ones are still found there, in whom 
The old time' chides the new : these deem it lon^ 
Ere God restore them to a better world : 
The good Gherardo f of Palazzo he, 
Conrad f and Guide of Castello,' named 
In Gallic phrase more fitly the plain Lombard. 
On this at last conclude. The church of Rome, 
Mixing two governments that ill assort. 
Hath mias'd her footing, fallen into the mire,^ 
And there herself and burden much defiled." 
" O Marco .'" 1 replied, *' thme arguments 
Convince me: and the cause I now discern, 
Why of the heritage no portion came 
To Levi's offipring. But resolve me this : 

> THat land,] Lombardy. 

s Ere the day.] Before the Emperor Frederick II. was de* 
feated before Parma, in 124& 6. Vuiani, lib. vi. cap. 3& 

•Tksold tinu,] L'antica eti. 

It is silly sooth, 

And dallies with the inDocence of love. 
Like the old age. 

Shalupearet Twelfth J^'ight, act ii. sc. 4. 

* Tike good Oherardo.] Gherardo dl Camino, of TrevigU 
He is honorably mentioned in our Poet's Convito, p. 173L 
**Let us suppose that Gherardo da Camino had been the 
grandson of the meanest hind that ever drank of the Sile of 
the Cagnano, and that his grandfather wns not yet forgotten ; 
who will dare to- say that Gherardo da Camino was a mean 
man, and who will not agree with me in calling him noble 1 
Certainly no one, however prestunptnons, will deny this ; for 
such he was, and as such let him ever be remembered.** 
Tlralioschl supposes him to have been the same Gherardo 
with whom the Proveneal poets were used to meet a hospit- 
able reception. **This is probably that same Ghenurdo, who, 
together with his sons, so early as before the year 1354, gave 
a kind and hospitable reception to the Provencal poets.** 
Ifr. Mathias*s edition, torn. i. p. 137. 

» Conrad.] Cnrrado da Palazzo, a gentleman of Brescia. 

• Outdo of Caetello.] Of Reggio. All the Italians were 
called Lombards by the French. 

7 Fhllen into the mire.] There is a passage resembling this 
Tn the De Volg. Eioq., lib. 11. cap. 4. ^ Ante omnia ergo 
dieimns wrarnqoeniqiie debere materia pondvs propriii ha 
meria ezeipere aqnale, ne forte hnrncronun nimio giravataro 
virmtera in aenam cespitare neccsse sit.** 


Who that Gherardo is, that as vhoa sayst 
Ib left a sample of the perished race, 
And for rebuke to this untoward age Y* 

" Either thy words," said he, " deceive, or else 
Are meant to try me ; that thou, speaking Tuscan. 
Appear*st not to have heard of good Gheraido; 
The sole addition that, by which I know him ; 
Unless I borrowed from his daughter Gala' 
\nother name to grace him. God be with yoo. 
I bear you company no more. Behold [mist 

The dawn with white ray glimmering through the 
I must away — the angel comes— ere he 
Appear." He said, and would not hear me more 



The Poet iMnes from that thick vapor ; and soon after bi« 
fancy repreflentt to him in lively portialtare aome noted 
examines of anger. This imagination Is ditsipated by the 
appearance of an ansel, who marshals them onward to the 
fourth cornice, on which the sin of gloominess or indiflfer 
ence is purged ; and here Virgil shows him that this vice 
proceeds from a defect of love, and that all love can IM 
only of two sorts, either natural, or of the soul ; of which 
sorts the former is always right, but the latter may en 
either in respect of object or of degree. 

Call to remembrance, reader, if thou e'er 
Hast on an Alpine height' been ta*en by cloud, 

I His daughter Oaia.] A lady equally admired for her 
modesty, the beauty of her person, and the excellency of bef 
talents. Ga'ia, savs Tiraboschi, may perhaps lay claim to the 
praise of having been the first among the Italian ladies, by 
whom the vernacular poetry was cultivated. This appears 

Slthongh no one has yet named her as a poetess) (rom the 
S. Commentary on the Ck>mmedla of Dante, by Giovanni 
da Serravalle, anerwards bishop of Fermo, where, comment- 
big on Canto zvl. of the Purgatory, he says : ** De istA GaJI 
filii dleti boni Gerardi, possent elcl roulue laudes, quia lUt 
prudens domlna, llterata. magnl consilU, et magnc prndentia, 
naxime pnlchrltndinis, qua sclvlt bene *oqni rhytmatioe is 

* Oh an Mjnne height.] ** Nell* alpe.** Althotigh the Alps, 
as Landlno remarks, are properly those moun&Uns whfek 
divide Italy from France, yet from them i^l high mountaiBS 
are in the Tuscan language, though not in the Latin, termes 
Alps. Milton uses the word thus generally in the «*■*•*?■» 

Nor breath of vernal air from snowy Alp. 

\nd this is a snflleient answer to the charge of to npre p s f ety 
which is bnnight by Doctor Johnson, on the introdncltoa of if 
•uto that drama. See the Rambler, So. 140l 

a^-W. PURGATORY, Canio XVII. 3n 

Through which thou saVet no better thai the mole 

Doth through opacous membrane ; then, whene'er 

The watery vapors dense began to melt 

Into thm air, how faintly the sun's sphere 

Seem'd wading through them : so thy nimble thought 

May image, how at first I rebeheld 

The sun, that bedward now his couch o'erhung. 

Thus, with my leader's feet still equalling pace, 
From forth that cloud I came, when now expired 
The parting beams from off the nether shores. 

O quick and forgetive power ! that sometunes dost 
So rob us of ourselves, we take no mark 
Though round about us thousand trumpets clang ; 
What moves thee, if the senses stir not? Light 
Moves thee from heaven, spontaneous, self-inform'd ; 
Or, likelier, gliding down with swift illapse 
By will divine, rortray'd before me came 
The traces of her dire impiety. 
Whose form was changed into the bird, that most 
Delights itself in song:' and here my mind 
Was inwardly so wrapt, it gave no place 
To aught that ask'd admittance from without. 

The birdf that most 

Delights itself in song.] I cannot think with Vellutello, 
that the swallow is here meant. Dante probably alludes to 
the story of Philomela, as it is found in Homer's Odyssey, 
b. xlz. 518, rather than as later poets have told it. *' She in- 
tended to slay the son of her husband's brother Amphion, 
incited to it by the envy of his wife, who had six children, 
while herself had only two, but through mistaJce slew her 
own son Itylos, and for her punishment was transformed by 
Jnpiter into a nightingale." Cowper's note on this passage, 
bi speaking of the nightingale, let me observe, that while 
some nave considered its song as a melancholy, and others 
as a cheerful one, Chiabrera appears to have come nearest 
the truth, when he says, in the Alcippo, act i. sc. 1. 

Non mai si stanca d'iterar le note, 

O gioconde o dogliose, 

Al sentir dilettose. 
Unwearied still reiterates her lays, 
Jocund and sad, delightful to the ear. 

See a very pleasing letter on this subject by a late illus- 
trious statesman. .Address to the reader prefixed to Foz^s Hi^ 
torf of James 11.^ Edit. 1806, p. xii.; and a beautiful poem by 
Mr. Coleridge. I know not whether the following lines by a 
neglected poet have yet been noticed, as showing the diver- 
m of opinions that have prevailed respecting the song of 
this bird. 

The cheerM birds 

With sweetest notes to sing their Maker's praise, 
Among the which, the merrie nightingale 
With swete and swete, her breast against a t] orn, 
Einges out all iright. Vallans. Tate of Tuso 8wauut» 

812 THE VISION. 15-S6 

Next fihower*d into my fantasy a shape 
As of one crucified,^ whose visage spake 
Fell rancor, malice deep, wherein he died s 
And round him Ahasueros the great king; 
E^sther his bride ; and Mordecai the just. 
Blameless in word and deed. As of itself 
That unsubstantial coinage of the brain 
Burst, like a bubble,' when the water fails 
That fed it ; in my vision straight uprose 
A damsel* weepmg loud, and cried, <* O queen I 

mother ! wherefore has intemperate ire 
Driven thee to loathe thy being? Mot to loso 
Lavinia, desperate thou hast slain thysel£ 
Now hast thou lost me. I am shts whose tears 
Mourn, ere I fall, a mother's tuneless end." 

E'en as a sleep breaks ofF, if suddenly 
New radiance strike upon the closed lids. 
The broken slumber quivering ere it dies ^ 
Thus, from before me, sunk Siat imagery, 
Vanbhing, soon as on my face there struck 
The light, outshining far our earthly beam. 
As round I tum'd me to survey what place 

1 had arrived at, <* Here ye mount :*' exdaim'd 
A voice, that other purpose left me none 
Save will so eager to behold who spake, 

I could not choose but gaze. As 'fore the sun. 
That weighs our vision down, and veils his form 
In light transcendent, thus my virtue fail'd 
Unequal. " This is Spirit from above. 
Who marshals us our upward way, unsought ; 
And in his own light shrouds him. As a man 
Doth for himself, so now is done for us. 

i Om erueified.] Haman. See the book of Esther, c. vli 
" In the Luaetta of Haman, we owe the sabllme conceptHJU 
of his figure (by Michael Angelo) to this passage.** ^^udi 
Lecture iii. note. 

a Like a bubble.] 

The earth hath bubbles, as the water has, 
And these are of them. 

Shaktpeare, Maebetkt aet i. sc. Itt. 

s A dameelA Lavinia, mourning for hrir mother Amata 
who, impelied by grief and indignatkm for the supposed 
death of Tumus, destroyed heneu. JBn^ lib. zii. 50o. 

* TA« broken dumber fuiverinf ere tl di§e.\ Ventoii sug- 
gests that tliis bold and unusual metaphor may have Leei 
formed on that in Viigil. 

Tempus erat quo prima quies mortalibus ngris 
Inciiut, et dono divOm giatlssinia terpit 

~ Uh.lLWH 

17-99. PORGATORY, Caitto XVII. 81H 

For whoso waits uDjAonng, yet sees need 

Of his prompt aidance, sets himself pre|iarBil 

For bluit denial, ere the suit be made. 

Refuse we not to lend a ready foot 

At such inviting : haste we to ascend. 

Before it darken : for we may not then. 

Till mom aeain return." So spake my guide : 

And to one ladder both address'd onr steps ; 

And the first stair approaching, I perceived 

ife&i me as 't were the waving of a wing, 

That fann'd my faco, and whispered : ** Blessed they. 

The peace-makers :' they know not evil wrath." 

Now to sach height above our heads were raised 
The last beams, follow'd close by hooded night, 
That many a star on all sides through the gloom 
Shone out " Why partest from me, O my strength V 
So vnth myself I communed ; for I felt 
My o'ertoil'd sinews slacken. We had reach'd 
The summit, and were fix'd like to a bark 
Arrived at land. And waiting a short space, 
If aught should meet mine ear in that new round. 
Then to my guide I tum'd, and said : '* Loved siie ! 
Declare what guilt is on this circle purged. 
If our feet rest, no need thy speech should pause." 

He thus to me : " The love^ of good, whatever 
Wanted of just proportion, here fidfils. 
Here plies afresh the oar, that loiter'd ill. 
But that thou mayst yet clearlier understand, 
Give ear unto my words ; and thou shalt cull 
Some fruit may please thee well, from this delay. 

" Creator, nor created bemg, e'er. 
My son," he thus began, " was without love. 
Or natural,' or the free spirit's growth. 
Thou hast not that to learn. The natural still 
Is without error : but the other swerves. 
If on ill object bent, or through excess 
Of vigor, or defect While e'er it seeks* 

1 T%0 »«if< makm,] ** Blessed ara the peace-makers, fin 
they shall be called the children of God.*' Matt^ v. 9. 

s Tke Uve.] ** A defect in our love towards God, or luk^ 
vrannness in ]rfety, is here removed." 

* Or nahmd.] Lombnidi refers to the Convito, Cans. I 
Tkatt 8; cap. 3, where this subject ia difitasely treated by otu 

« fFkile 0*er it »eek».] BoFrezzi: 

S 8*egli d ben, che d'altro ben dipenda, 
Ncm s*ami quasi per se esistente, 
Se vnol, che quando i tolto, non t*oflfenda. 

_ S Quadrir^ Ub <L cap^ 11 

;|14 THE VISION. 94-1*4 

The primal bloRsings,^ or with measare due 

The inferiori' no deligh', that flows from it^ 

Partakes of ill. But let it warp to eyil, 

Or with more ardor than behooves, or less, 

Pursue the good ; the thing created then 

Works 'gaiust its Maker. Hence thou most infer, 

That lore is germin of each virtue in ye, 

And of each act no less, that merits pain. 

Now* since it may not be, but love intend 

Thd welfare mainly of the thing it loves. 

All from self-hatred are secure ; and since 

No being can be thought to exist apart, 

And independent of the first, a bar 

Of equal force restrains from hating that 

" Grant the distinction just ; and it remains 
The evil must be another's, which is loved. 
Three ways such love is gender'd in your clay. 
There is^ who hopes (his neighbor's worth depreas'd) 
Pre-eminence himself ; and covets hence, 
For his own greatness, that another fall. 
There is* who so much fears the loss of power. 
Fame, favor, glory, (should his fellow mount 
Above him,) and so sickens at the thought, 
He loves their opposite : and there is he,' 
Whom wrong or insult seems to gall and shame, 
That he doth thirst for vengeance ; and such needs 
Must doat on other's evil. Here beneath. 
This threefold love is moum*d.^ Of the other sort 
Be now instructed ; that which follows good. 
But with disorder'd and irregular course. 

" All indistinctly apprehend a bliss. 

This Capitolo, which descrilies the panishment of those 
who give way to inordinate grief for the loss of their Undied, 
hi marked by much power of imagination and a mblUoe 

1 T%e primal blessings.] Spiritnal good. 

* The iitferior.] Temporal good. 

> JVmp.J "It is impossible for any being, either to bate 
Itself, or to hate the First Cause of all, by which it ezfeHk 
We can theiefore only rejoice in the evil which t e&Us otheiB.*' 

* There ia.} The proud. 

* TTkereis.} The envious. 

* nereiehe] The lesentfbl. 

T Thie aretfold love ie fMwnCd.l Frezzi allodei to tMi 

Buperbla puote essero in tre modi ; 
vL come si dlmostra dalla Mnsa, 
La qual hai letta, e che tn tanto lodl. 

125-137. PURGATORY, Canto XVIIl 315 

On which the soul may rest ; the hearts of ull 
Yearn after it ; and to that wished bourn 
All therefore strive to tend. If ye behold, 
Or seek it, with a love remiss and lax ; 
This cornice, after just repenting, lays 
Its penal torment on ye. Other good 
There is, where man finds not his happiness : 
It is not true fruition ; not that ble&t 
Essence, of every good the branch and root. 
The love too lavishly bestow'd on this, 
Along three circles^ over us, is moum'd. 
Account of that division tripartite 
Expect not, fitter for thine own research." 




Virgil discourses farther concerning the nature of love. Then 
a mnltitade of spirits rush by ; two of whom in van of the 
rest, record instances of zrai and fervent afiection, and 
another who was abbot of San Zeno in Verona, declares 
himself to Virgil and Dante ; and lastly follow other spirits, 
shontinK forth memorable examples of the sin for which 
they suler. The Poet, punning his meditations, falls intu 
a dreamy slumber. 

The teacher ended,^ and his high discourse 
Concluding, earnest in my looks inquired 
If I appeaPd content ; and I, whom still 
Unsatod thirst to hear him urged, was mute, 
Mute outwardly, yet inwardly I said : 
" Perchance my too much questioning ofiends." 
But he, true father, mark'd the secret wish 
By difi&dence restrained ; and, speaking, gave 

^ ^lang three eircles.] According to the allegorical com- 
mentaton, as Venturi has observed, Reason is represented 
under the person of Virgil, and Sense under that of Dante. 
The former leaves to the latter to discover for itself the three 
canal sins — avarice, gluttony, and libidinousness ; having 
already declared the nature ot the spiritual sins— pride, envy, 
angw, and indifierence, or lukewarmness in piety, which 
the Italians call aeddta^ from the Greek word ixq^la, and 
which Chaucer vainly endeavored to naturalize in our lan- 
guage. See the Persone^s Tale. Lombard! refen to Thomas 
Aquinas, l?j. i., dues^ 72, Art. 3, for the division here made 
by our Poet. 

3 T%0 teacher ended.] Compare Plato, Protagoras, v. ill. p 
IS3; Bip. edit, nf>&iraydpar yikv rova^ra K.r,X. ApoU. Rhnd. 

i. 513, and Milton, P. L., b. viii. 1. 
The angel ended, and in Adanrs ear 
Bo charming left his voice, that he awhile 
Hionght him still speakmg, still stood flx'd tn hear 


Me boldness thus to speak : ** Master . xny Mgfal 
Gathers so lively virtue from thy beams, 
That all, thy words convey, distinct is seen. 
Wherefore I pray thee, father, whom this heart 
Holds dearest, thou wouldst deign by proof t* unfold 
That love, from which, as from their source, thou 

All good deeds and their opposite." He then : 
*' To what I now disclose be thy clear ken 
Directed ; and thou plainly shalt behold i^sekcs 

How much those blind have err'd, who make thran- 
The guides of men. The soul, created apt 
To love, moves versatile which way soe'er 
Aught pleasing prompts her, soon as she is waked 
By pleasure into act Of substance true 
Your apprehension^ forms its counterfeit ; 
And, in you the ideal shape presentmg, 
Attracts the soul's regard. If she, thus drawn. 
Incline toward it ; love is that inclining. 
And a new nature knit by pleasure in ye. 
Then, as the fire points up, and mounting seeks 
His birthplace and his lasting seat, e'en Uius 
Enters the captive soul into desire. 
Which is a spiritual motion, that ne'er rests 
Before enjoyment of the thing it loves. 
Enough to show thee, how the truth from ihoaa 
Is hidden, who aver all love a thing 
Praiseworthy in itself ; although perhaps' 

1 Tour apprehension,} It is literally, "Yonr apprehensive 
faculty derives intension from a thing really existing, and 
displays that intension within you, so that it makes the sonl 
turn to it." The commentators labor in explaining this ; bnt 
ivhatever sense they have elicited, may, I think, be resolved 
into the words of the translation in the text. 

* Perhe^t.] " Our author,** Ventnri observes, " uses the 
language of the Peripatetics, which denominates the kind of 
thirds, as determinable by many di^rences, matter. Jjove, 
then, in kind, perhaps, appears good ; and it is said perke^s, 
because, strictly spealdng, in kind there is neither food not 
bad. neither praiseworthy nor blameable.'* To this, Lom 
*)ardi adds, that what immediately follows, nainely, that 

every mark is not good although the wax be so,*' answers 
to this interpretation. For the wax is precisely as the deter- 
minable matter, and the mark or impression as the deter- 
mining form ; and even as the wax, which is either goo I or 
at least not bad, may, by being imprinted by a bad llgiiN^ 
acquire the name of bad ; so may love be said generally tu 
70 good or at least not bad, and acquire the name ct bad by 
deing determined to an unlit ot^Jecl. " As the wax lakes al 
shapes, and yet is wax still at the bottom ; the H hmttk 

9&-«Sl PURGATORV, Canto XVIU. 817 

Its matter aeem still good. Yet if the wax 
Be good, it follows not the impression must." 

« What love is," I retum'd, " thy words, O guide ! 
And my own docile mind, reveal Yet thence 
New douhts have sprung. For, from without, if love 
Be offered to us, and the spirit knows 
No other footing ; tend she right or wrong. 
Is no desert of hers." He answering thus : 
" What reason here discovers, I have power 
To show thee : that which lies heyond, expect 
From Beatrice, faith not reason's task. 
Spirit,' substantial form, with matter joined, 
Not in confusion mix'd, hath in itself 
Specific virtue of that union bom. 
Which is not felt except it work, nor proved 
But through effect, as vegetable life 
By the green leaf. From whence his intellect 
Deduced its primal notices of things, 
Man therefore knows not, or his appetites 
Their first affections ; such in you, as zeal 
In bees to gather honey ; at the first, 
V^olition, meriting nor blame nor praise. 
But o'er each lower faculty supreme, 
That, as she list, are sunmion'd to her bar, 
Ye have that virtue' in you, whose just voice 
Uttereth counsel, and whose word should keep 
The threshold of assent. Here is the source. 
Whence cause of merit in you is derived ; 
E'en as the affections, good or ill, she takes. 
Or severs,' winnow'd as the chaff Those men,' 

|ifv«r still is wax ; so the soul transported in so many several 
passions of joy, fear, hope, sorrow, anger, and the like, has 
ibr its general groundwork of all this, Love." Henry Mort^ 
DUeaurte xvi This passage in the roost philosophical of 
oar theologians, may serve for an answer to the objection of 
those who blame Collins for not having brought in Iiove 
among the "■ Passions*' in his exquisite ode. 

I t^firit.'\ The human soul, which differs frcm that of brutes, 
hiasmnch as though united with the body it has a separate 
existence of its own. 

* 7%a< etrtiM.] Reason. 

* Or §ever§.'\ Lest the reader of the original should be mis- 
ied, it is right to warn him that tiie word ** vigliare'* must not 
be confounded with ** vagliare*' to winnow, and strictly means 
** to separate from the straw what remains of the grain after 
fhe thjreshing.** The procesn is distinctly described in the 
aotes on the Decameron, p. 77, Ediz. Giunti, 15T3, where this 
passage is xeibrred to 

« Tkote men.] The great moral philosophers among Uic 

518 TH£ VISION. CQ-to 

Who, reasoning, went to depth profooncett, maik'd 

That umate freedom ; and were thence induced 

To leave their moral teaching to the world. 

Grant then, that from necessity arise 

All loye that glows within you ; to dismiss 

Or harbor it, the power is in yourselves. 

Remember, Beatrice, in iier style, 

Denominates free choice by eminence 

The noble virtue ; if in talk with thee 

She touch upon that theme." The moon, woll nigli 

To midnight hour belated, made the stars 

Appear to wink and fade ; and her broad disk 

Seem'd like a crag' on fire, as up the vault' 

That course she joumey'd, which the sun then warms!: 

When they of Rome behold him at his set 

Betwixt Sardinia and the Conic isle. 

And now the weight, that hung upon my thought. 

Was lighten'd by the aid of that clear spirit. 

Who raiseth Andes' above Mantua's name. 

I therefore, when my questions had obtained 

Solution plain and ample, stood as one 

Musing in dreamy slumber ; but not long 

Slumber'd ; for suddenly a multitude, 

The steep already turning from behind, 

Rush'd on. With fury and like random rout. 

As echoing on their shores at midnight heard 

Israenus and Asopus,^ for his Thebes 

If Bacchus* help were needed ; so came these 

Tumultuous, curving each his rapid step, 

- A crag^ I have preferred the reading ofLandino, tcke^ 
fion, ** crag,'* coDceiving it to be more poetical than teecikiMi. 
** bucket,*' which is the common reading. Tlie same cause 
the vapoon, which the commentators say might give the ap- 
pearance of increased magnitude to the moon, might also 
malce her seem broken at her rise. Lombardi explains it di^ 
ferently. The moon being, as he says, in the flrth night of 
her wane, has exactly the figure of a brazen bucket, round at 
the bottom and open at top ; and, if we suppose it to be 
all on fife, we shall have, besides the form of the mnoOf htt 
c»ior also. There Lb a simile in one of Fielding's novels very 
like this, but so ludicrous that I am unwilling to disturb t^.e 
reader's gravity by inserting it. 

* C> tkfvamlL] The moon passed with a motion opposite 
;o thiU of the heavens, through the constellation <^ the Scor- 
pion, in which the sun Lb, i«hen to those who are in Some ho 
appeals to set between the isles of Corsica and flanilniv 

* Jhtde9»l Andes, now Pietola, made more fiunous thaa 
Mantua, near which it is situated, by having been the Ufth 
place of Virgil. 

* XnMFKs aitd A»«pM».] Rivers near Thebes. 

3S-13R. PURGATORY , Canto XV [1 1. 3 J D 

.By eagemeae impell'd of holy love. 

Soon they o'ertook ns ; with such swiflueaB movei' 
The mighty crowd. Two flpirits at their head 
Cried, weeping, ** Bleiied Mary' sought with haste 
The hilly region. CiBflar,' to subdue 
Ilerda, darted in Marseilles his sting, 
And flew to Spain." — " Oh, tarry not : away !" 
The others shouted ; " let not time be lost 
Through slackness of affection. Hearty zeal 
To serve reanimates celestial grace." 

'^ O ye ! in whom intenser fervency 
Haply supplies, where lukewarm erst ye fail'd, 
Slow or neglectful, to absolve your part 
Of good and virtuous ; this man, who yet lives, 
(Credit my tale, though strange) desires to asceci 
So morning rise to light us. Therefore say 
Which hand leads nearest to the rifted rock." 

So spake my gruide ; to whom a shade returned 
" Come after us, and thou shalt find the cleft. 
We may not linger : such resistless will 
Speeds our unwearied course. Vouchsafe us then 
Thy pardon, if our duty seem to thee 
Discourteous rudeness. In Verona I 
Was abbot' of San Zeno, when the hand 
Of Barbarossa grasp'd Imperial sway. 
That name ne'er utter'd without tears in Milan. 
And there is he,^ hath one foot in his grave, 
Who for that monastery ere long shall weep, 
Ruing his power misused: for that his son, 
Of body ill compact, and worse in mind. 
And bom in evil, he hath set in place 
Of its true pastor." Whether more he spake. 
Or here was mute, I know not : he had sped 
E*en now so far beyond us. Yet thus much 

1 Mmrif.] ** And Maiy arose in those day^ and went Into 
tfae hill-eonntry with haste, into a city of Joda ; and en- 
tered into the house of 2^haria5, and sainted Elisabeth.** 

s CkuarJ] See Lncan, Phan., lib. iil. and iv., and Cesar de 
Bello Civlli, lib. i. Caesar left Bnitns to rompiete the siege 
of Maxseillea, and hastened cm to the attack of Afranina 
and Petrous, the generals of Pompey, at lieida (Lerida) in 

s jiUtC] Alberto, abbot of San Zeno in Verona, when 
Frederick L was emperor, by whom Milan was besieged and 
SHiiioed to ashes, in 1163: 

* TTkere l» he.} Alberto delta Scala, Lord of Verona, wh: 
had made his natoml son abbot of San Zeno 

530 THE VISIO.N 12f>-l«e 

I heard, and in remembrance treasured it 

He then, who never fail'd me at my need, 
Cried, *' Hither turn. Lo ! two with sharp remoiBe 
Chiding their sin." In rear of all the troop 
Hiese shouted : " First they died,' to whom the sea 
Open'd, or ever Jordan saw his heirs : 
And they,' who with iBneas to the end 
Endured not sufiering, for their portion chose 
Life without glory." Soon as they had fled 
Past reach of sight, new thought within me roso 
By others followed fast, and each unlike 
Its fellow : till led on from thought to thought. 
And pleasured with the fleeting train, mine eye 
Was closed, and meditation changed to dream 



The Poet, after describing his dream, relates how, at the sum 
moning of an angel, he ascends with Virgil to the fifth cor 
nice, where the sin of avarice is cleansed, and whero lit 
finds Pope Adrian the Fifth. 

It was the hour,' when of diurnal heat 

No reliques chafe the cold beams o{ the moon. 

O'erpower'd by earth, or planetary sway 

Of Saturn : and the geomancer* sees 

His Greater Fortune up the east ascend, 

Where gray dawn checkers first the shadowy ccoe t 

When, 'fore me in my dream, a woman's shape* 

^ First tAejf died.] The Israelites, who, on accoant of melt 
disobedience, died before reaching the promised land. 

> Jtnd they.] Those Trojans, who, wearied with their voy 
age, chose rather to remain in Sicily with Acestes, than aio 
company JBneas to Italy. Virg. JEn., lib v. 

s Tlk0 hour.] Near the dawn. 

* The geomancer.] The geomancers, says Landlno, when 
they divined, drew a figure consisting of sixteen marks, namctl 
Ikom so many stars which constitute the end of Aquarius am] 
the beginning of Pisces. One of these they called ** tlie 
Kieater fortune.** Chancer has imitated this in a descriptkni 
of morning, (Troilus and Creseide, b. iii.) for he did not find 
U In his original, Boccaccio*s Filostrato : — 

But when the cocke, commune astrologer, 
Gan on his brest to bete, and after crowe, 
And Lucifer the dayis messanger 
6aa for to rise, and out his bemis throwe. 
And estward rose, to him that could it kmrnn. 
Fortnna Major. 

• Ji wtmAiCe ehape.] Woridly happiness. 'Ilila aUcemy 
n-nUcds us of the " Choice of Hercules.** 

3-37. PURGATORY. Canto XIX ZU\ 

There came, with lips that stammer'd, eyes asii^t» 
Distorted feet, hands maini'd, and color pale 

I looked upon her : and, as sunshine cheers 
Limbs nnmb'd by nightly cold, e'en thus my look 
Unloosed her tongue ; next, in brief space, her fonn 
Decrepit raised erect, and faded face 
With love's own hue* illumed Recovering speech, 
She forthwith, warbling, such a strain began, 
That I, how loth soe'er, could scarce have held 
Attention from the song. " I," thus she sang, 
" I am the Syren, she, whom mariners 
On the wide sea are wilder'd when they hear : 
Such fulness of delight the listener feeleu 
I, from his course, Uhnasei^ by my lay 
Enchanted drew. Whoe'er frequents me once, 
Parts seldom : so I charm him, and his heart 
Contented knows no void." Or ere her mouth 
Was closed, to shame her, at my side appear'd 
A dame' of semblance holy. With stem voice 
She utter'd : " Say, O Vu-gU ! who is this ?" 
Which hearing, he approach'd, with eyes still bent 
Toward that goodly presence : the other seized her. 
And, her rob^ tearing, open'd her before, 
And show'd the belly to me, whence a smell. 
Exhaling loathsome, waked me. Round I tum'd 
Mine eyes: and thus the teacher : " At the least 
Three tunes my voice hath call'd thee. Rise, begone. 
Let us the opening find where thou mayst pass." 

I straightway rose. Now day, pour'd down from 
Fill'd all the circuits of the sacred mount ; [high. 

^ Lote'a mon hue.] 

— A smile that glowM 
Celestial rosy red, love's iwoper hue. 

Milton, P. L., b. viiL G19. 

facies palcherrima tunc est, . 

Qvam porphyriaco variatur Candida rabro. 

Qjtid color hie roseus sibi vult 1 designat amorera : 

Qnippe amor est igni simiUs ; flammasque rubentes 

Ignis habere solet. 

Palingenii Zodiaeu» ViUe, lib. xil. 

Ulffttea.} It is not easy to detennine why Ulysses, con- 
Jniry to the authority of Homer, is said to have been drawn 
aside from his course by the song of the Syren. No improba 
ble way of accounting for the contradiction is, to suppose that 
•he is here represented as purposely deviating firom the truth. 
Or Dante may have followed some legend of the middle ages, 
in which the wanderings of Ulysses were represented other- 
wise than in Uomeu 
s jf dmnB.] Philosophy, or perbaos Truth 

399 THE VISION. aH> 

And as we joumey'd, on our shoulder smote 

The early ray. I foUow'd, stoopmg low 

My forehead, as a man, o'ercharged with tboogn:^ 

"Who bends him to the Ukeness of an arch 

That midway spans the flood ; when thus I heaid, 

*' Come, enter here," in tone so soft and mild. 

As never met the ear on mortal strand. 

With swan-like wings dispread and pointing up. 
Who thus had spoken marshall'd us along. 
Where, each side of the solid masonry, 
The sloping walls retired ; then moved his plumes. 
And fanning us, affirm'd that those, who mourn,' 
Are blessed, for that comfort shall be theirs. 

" What aileth thee, that still thou look'st to earth '* 
Began my leader ; while the angelic shape 
A little over us his station took. 

** New vision," I replied, ** hath raised in me 
Surmisings strange and anxious doubts, whereon 
My soul intent allows no other thought 
Or room, or entrance." — " Hast thou seen," said he, 
'* That old enchantress, her, whose wiles alone 
The spirits o'er us weep for? Hast thou seen 
How man may free him of her bonds ? Enough. 
Let thy heels spurn the earth f and thy raised ken 
Fix on the lure, which heaven's eternal King 
Whirls in the rolling spheres." As on his feet 
The falcon' first lo^ down, then to the sky 
Turns, and forth stretches eager for the food. 
That woos him thither ; so the call I heard : 
So onward, far as the dividing rock 
Gave way, I joumey'd, till the plain was reached. 

> Who tuoum.'] " Blessed are they that moiuni ; for they 
phall be comforted." Matt. v. «. 

> Let tAy heels spurn the earth.] This is a metaphor from 
hawking, though less apparent than in the lines that follow 

* Tksfaieon.] 

Poi come fh *1 falcon, qnando si move, 
Cosi Umilt& al cielo alzb la vista. 

Avzzt, B Qiiadrtr., lib. It. cap. % 

lo vidl pol color tntti levare 
Inverso 11 cielo, come & *1 &lcon«, 
Qoando la preda sua prende in su I*are. 

Atf., cap. ilU. 

One of oar periodical critics has remarked, that Dante nniHl 
have loved hawking ; and * that he painu his Ufd always to 
the life.** Edinburgh Remeio, No. IvUi. p. 47S. In the sane 
manner Mr. Blomfleid snpposes that iBschylns was addletoil 
tn fishing, because he often takes his metaphors ftom fishing 
nets. See that gentleman's notes to the Perse. Gloesar.. v.4a& 

ae-105. PURGATORY, Canto XIX. 823 

Oil the fifth circle when I stood at large, 
A race appeared before me, on the ground 
All downward lying prone and weeping sore 
** My soul' hath cleaved to the dust/' I heard 
With sighs so deep, they well-nigh choked the wordd 

*< O ye elect of God ! whose penal woes 
Both hope and justice mitigate, direct 
Towards the steep rising our uncertain way.*' 

" If ye approach secure from this our doomi 
Prostration, and would urge your course with speeds 
See that ye still to rightward keep the brink." 

So them the bard besought ; and such the words 
Beyond us some short space, in answer came. 

I noted what remain'd yet hidden from theo ^ 
Thence to my liege's eyes mine eyes I bent. 
And he, forthwith interpreting their suit, 
Beckon'd his glad assent Free then to act 
As pleased me, I drew near, and took my stand 
Over that shade whose words I late had mark'd. 
And, *< Spirit !" I said, " in whom repentant tears 
Mature that blessed hour when thou with God 
Shalt find acceptance, for a while suspend 
For me that mightier care. Say who thou wast ', 
Why thus ye grovel on your bellies prone ; 
And if, in aught, ye wish my service there. 
Whence living I am come." He answering spako : 
*' The cause why Heaven our back toward his cope 
Reverses, shalt thou know : but me know first. 
The successor of Peter,' and the name 
And title of my lineage, from that stream* 
That 'twixt Chiaveri and Siestri draws 
His limpid waters through the lowly glen. 
A month and little more by proof I leam'd 
With what a weight that robe of sovereignty 
Upon his shoulder rests, who from the mire 
Would guard it ; that each other fardel seems 
But feathers in the balance. Late, alas ! 

> Jlilf 9oul.] '* My 8ocl cleaveth to the dust: quicken thou 
(lie according to thy word." Pgalm czix. 25. 

> / noted what remain'd yet hidden from them.] They were 
Ignontnt, it appeared, whether Dante was come there to bo 
pofsedofhls tins. 

* 7%« »ueees9or of Peter.] Ottobnono, of the &mUy of n< 
cschi, Ckmnts of Lavagno, di«9d thirty-nine days after he b» 
same pope, with the title of Adrian V., in 1370. 

* Tikat HreamJ] The river Lcvagno, in the Genoese tenl-: 
lorv; to the east of which territory are situated PieaUi aotl 

824 TU£ VISION. ifi^lZb 

Was my convenioii : but, when I became 

Rome's pastor, I discem'd at once the dream 

And cozenage of life ; saw that the heart 

Rested not there, and yet no prouder height 

Lured on the climber : wherefore, of that life 

No more enamor'd, in my bosom love 

Of purer being kindled. For till then 

I was a soul in misery, alienate 

From God, and covetous of all earthly things ; 

Now, as thou seest, here punish'd for my dotmg. 

Such cleansing from the taint of avarice. 

Do spirits, converted, need. This mount inflicts 

No direr penalty. E'en as our eyes 

Fastened below, nor e'er to loftier clime 

Were lifted ;' thus hath justice levell'd us. 

Here on the earth. As avarice quench'd our love 

Of good, without which is no working ; thus 

Here justice holds us prison'd, hand and foot 

Chained down and bound, while heaven's just Lozd 

shall please. 
So long to tarry, motionless, outstretch'd." 

My knees I stoop'd, and would have spoke ; but he: 
Ere my beginning, by his ear perceived 
I did him reverence ; and " What. cause," said he, 
" Hath bow'd thee thus?"—" Compunction," I ra- 
" And inward awe of your high dignity." [join'd 

" Up," he exclaim'd, " brother ! upon thy feet 
Arise ; err not :" thy fellow-servant I, 
(Thine and all others') of one Sovereign Power. 
If thou hast ever mark'd those holy sounds 
Of gospel truth, ' nor shall be given in marriage,'* 
Thou mayst discern the reasons of my speech. 
Go thy ways now ; and linger hera no more. 
Thy tarrying is a let unto &e tears. 
With which I hasten that whereof thou spakest* 

1 Were lifted.] Rosa Morando and Lombardl are very so* 
vere on Venturi's perplexity occasioned by the word ** adene.** 
They have none of them noticed Laadino^s reading of 
**aperse." Ediz. 1484. 

s Err net.] *' And I faU at his feet to woraUp him. Ab4 
ne said antu me, See thon do it not*. I am thy feUow-senraal, 
and of thy brethren that have the testimony of Jesus." Rem 

xlx. 10. 

s JVVr ehall be green in marriage.] ** Sinee in this state w« 
neither marry nor are given in marriage, I am no longer tlie 
spouse of the church, and therefore no longer retain ciy lija>> 
aner dignity.** Bee JITottn xsii; 30. 

* Ukat wkereef QmL j|pdfc«t(.] See v. n. 

1«»>143 PURGATORY, Canto XX 825 

I have on earth a kinswoman ;' her name 
Alagia, worthy in herself, so ill 
Example of our house corrupt her not : 
And she is all remaineth of me there.*' 



Among those on the fifth cornice, Hugh Capet records iflui^ 
trions examples of voluntary poverty &.id of bounty ; thtiii 
tells who himself is, and speaks of his descendants on thu 
French throne ; and, lastly, adds some noted instances of 
avarice. When he has ended, the mountain shakes, anil 
all the spirits sing " Glory to God.** 

Ill strives the will, 'gainst will more wise that strives : 

llis pleasure therefore to mine own preferred, 

I drew the sponge' yet thirsty from the wave. 

Onward I moved : he also onward moved. 

Who led me, coasting still, wherever place 

Along the rock was vacant ; as a man 

Wal^ near the battlements on narrow wall. 

For those on the other part, who drop by drop 

Wring out theu: all-infecting malady. 

Too closely press the verge. Accursed be thou, 

Inveterate wolf !" whobe gorge ingluts more prey, 

Than every beast beside, yet is not fill'd ; 

So bottomless thy maw. — ^Ye spheres of heaven ! 

To whom there are, as seems, who attribute 

All change in mortal state, when is the day 

Of his appearing,* for whom fate reserves 

To chase her hence 7 — ^With wary steps and slovf 

We pass'd ; and I attentive to the shades, 

Whom piteously I heard lament and wail ; 

And, 'midst the wailing, one before us heard 

Cry out " O blessed Virgin !" as a dame 

In the sharp pangs of childbed ; and " How poor 

Thou wast," it added, <* witness that low roof 

Where thou didst lay thy sacred burden down. 

O good Fabricius !* thou didst virtue choose 

^ A kxTuwofman.] Alagia is said to have been the wife ol 
the Marchese Marcello Malaspina, one of the Poet's proteclon 
daring his exile See Canto viii. 133. 

s / drew the tponge.] ** I did not persevere in my inquiries 
from the spirit, though still anxious to learn more.*' 

s mt^f.]. Avarice. 

* 0/ his i^peariiuf,] He is thought to allude to Can Grande 
dellaScala. See Hell, canto 1. 96. 

• fUrieiut.} So our author in the second book nf the A* 
MonafchiA, p. 181. '*Nonne Fabricium, &c." "Has ugr 



With povertyi before great wealth with vi Jc'' 

The words so pleased me, that desire to know 
The spirit, from whose lip they seem'd to come. 
Did draw me onward. Yet it spake the gift 
Of Nicholas,' which on the maidens he 
Bounteous bestow'd, to save their youthful prime 
Unblemish'd. " Spirit ! who dost speak of deeds 
So worthy, tell me who thou wast,*' I said, 
" And why thou dost with single voice renew 
Memorial of such praise. That boon vouchsafed 
Haply shall meet reward ; if I return 
To finish the short pilgrimage of life, 
Still speeding to its close on restless wing." 

" I," answered he, " will tell thee ; not for help 
Which thence I look for ; but that in thyself 
Grace so exceeding shines, before thy time 
Of mortal dissolution. I was root' 
Of that ill plant, whose shade such poison sheds 
O'er all the Christian land, that seldom thence 
Good fruit is gathered. Vengeance soon should coraoj 
Had Ghent and Douay, Lille and Bruges power ;' 
And vengeance I of heaven's great Judge implore 
Hugh Capet was I hight : from me descend 
The Philips and the I^uis, of whom France 
Newly is govem'd : bom of one, who plied 
The slaughterer's trade^ at Paris. When the race 

Fabricius given ns another example of reaistinf avarice, 
when, poor as he was, he preserved his Ikith to the repablic, 
and rejected with scorn a great sum of gold that wns o&red 
him ? Our Poet in the sixth book records this, when he says- 

Parvoque potentem 


Compare Petrarch, Tr. della Fama, c. i. 

Un Carlo ed an FVibrielu assai plu belli 
Con la lor poverti, che Blida e Craaso 
Con Poro end* a virtu f^iron rubelU. 

1 Jfieholat.] The story of Nicholas is, that an an^l hnv 
tUg revealed to him that the &ther of a fiimily was so impov- 
erished as to resolve on exposing the chastity of bis thrac 
daughters to sale, he threw in at the window of their house 
three bags of money, containing a sufficient portion (br each 
of them. 

* Root,] Hugh Capet, ancestor of Philip IV. 

s Had Ohent and JDouay, LUle and Bwnfff jMtPfr.] Thes»* 
cities had lately been seised by Philip IV. The spirit is 

to intimate the awRoaching defeat of the French army bythe 
Flemings, in the inttle of Uourtrai, which baniiened in 13Q8. 
* Tko •UingJUerur'a trado.] Tills reflection on the birth of 
his ancestor. Induced Francis L to forbid the reaiiiBg of Dante 
in his dcsninions. Hugh Capet, who came to the throne 
)f France in 067, was however the grandson of Robert, who 

aa-Ui. PURGATORY, Canto XX. 327 

Of ancit'Mt k'ngs had vanish'd (all save one* 
Wrapp'd up in sabie weeds) within my gripe 
I found the reins of empire, and such poweni 
Of new acquirement, with full store of friends, 
That soon the widow'd circlet of the crown 
Was girt upon the temples of my son,* 
He, from whose bones the anointed race beguus. 
Till the great dower of Provence' had removed 
The stains,^ that yet obscured our lowly blood. 
Its sway indeed was narrow ; but however 
It wrought no evil : there, with force and lies. 
Began its rapine : after, for amends,* 
Poitou it seized, Navarre and Gascony.* 

i^'as the brother of Eades, King of France in 888; aud it may 
therefore, well be questioned, whether by Beccaio di Parigi 
is meant literaHy one who carried on the trade of a batcher, 
at Paris, and whether the sanguinary disposition of Hagh 
Capet's fitther is not stigmatized by this opprobrious appella 
tton. See CanceUieri» Qssenrazioni, &c., Roma, 1814, p. 6. 

> All »ave one.] The posterity of Charlemagne, the second 
race of French monarchs, had railed, with the exception of 
Charles of Lorraine, who is said, on account of the melan- 
choly temper of his mind, to have always clothed himself in 
black. Venturi suggests that Danto may have confounded 
him with Childeric III., the last of the Merovingian, or first 
race, who was deposed and made a monk in 751. 

s My son.] Hugh Capet caused his son Robert to be 
crowned at Orleans. 

* TTke/freat dower ofFrovenee.] Louis IX. and his brother 
Charles of Anjon, married two of the four daughters of Ray- 
mond Berenger, Count of Provence. See Par., c. vi. 135. 

* The etaine.] Lombardi understands this differently from 
all the other commentators with whom I am acquainted. 
The word '* vergogna" he takes in the sense of ** a praise- 
worthy shame of doing ill ;*' and according to him, the trans- 
lation should mn thus : 

The shame that yet restrainM my race from III. 

By **Provenza** he understands the estates of Toulouse, the 
dowry of the only daughter of Raymond, Count of Toulouse. 
manried to a brother of Louis IX. 

* Fbr amende.] This is ironical. 

* Poitou it eeizedj J^aoarre and Oaecony.y I venture to read— 

rotd e Nararra prese e Giascogna, 

nstead of 

Fonti e Nwmandia prese e Guascogna. 

Seized PontfaieO) Normandy and Gascogny. 

fjandino has "Potti,** and he is probably right: for Poitou 
was annexed to the French crown by Philip IV. See He 
nanJt, Abr6g6 Chron., A. D. 1283, &e. Normandy had been 
united to it long before by Philip Augustus, a circamstance 
•f which it is difficult to imagine that Dante should have 
been ignorant ; but Philip IV., says Henanlt, ibid., took the 
title of King of Navarre : and the subjugation of Navanr 

S38 THE VISION. 65. nt 

To Italy came Charles ; and for amends, 
Young Conradine,^ an innocent victim, slew ; 

ks also alluded to in the Paradise, Canto xlx. 140. la 1903i 
Philip IV. summoned Edward L to do him homafge for the 
duchy of Gascogny, which he had conceived the design of 
■telzing. See 6. Villanl, lib. vill. cap. iv. 

The whole passage has occasioned much perplexity. 1 
cannot withhold from my readers the advantage of an at- 
tempt mode to unravel it by the late Archdeacon Fisher, 
which that gentleman, thougn a stranger, had the goodness 
to communicate to me in the following terms : " I am en- 
couraged to offer you an elucidation of a passage, with the 
interpretation of which I was never yet satisfied. As it goes 
to establish the accuracy of two very happy conjectureb 
which you have made at Purg. zx. 66, you will perhaps for 
give me, if my notion a little militates against your solution 
of the difficulty. The passage Is as follows : 

r fui radice della mala pianta, 
Che la terra Ciistiana tutta aduggia, 
Si che buon frutto rado se ne schianta. 
Ma se Doagio, Guanto, Lilla, e Bruggia 
Potesser, tosto ne saria vendetta : 
Ed io la chegglo a lul, che tutto ginggla 

Mentre che la gran dote Provenzale 
Al sangue mio non tolse la vergogna, 
Poco valea, ma pur non fkcea male. 
Li comincib con forza e con menzogna 
La sua rapina ; e poscia, per ammenda, 
Potti e Navarra prese, e Gnascogna. 

It IS my persuasion that the stanzas I have copied are 0ks 
passage, continuous in its sense, interrupted only by a pa 
renthesis of four stanzas, which are introduced as necessary 
to the political solution of the meaning. Again, I think thai 
my quoted stanzas refer to only one person, and that PhUip 
IV. of France. He is depicted by both the plirases. mala 
pianta, and sangue mio. I do not find that Louis IX. ob 
tained any part of Provence by dowry, owing to his marria|{« 
with the daughter of the prince of that country ; at least no- 
thing equivalent to the words la gran dote P.'ovenzale. 1 
suppose the stanzas quoted to depict the three great events 
in the life of Philip iV. He married, during the life of his 
father, the heiress of the Icingdom of Navarre, and also of 
the duchy of Champagne. Philip obtained at once the sov 
ereignty of both these dowries, and left to his son Philip V. 
the title of King of France and Navarre. On the aecasslou 
of Philip IV. to the throne, he became embroiled with the 
English respecting the duchy of Guienne, which, after having 
changed masters frequently, was then in the possession of 
Edward I. The word Guienne included Poiton and Gascony, 
<»!id was generally the country termed by Cesar, Aqoitania. 
By perfidy, and the childish Ignorance of Edmund, the brothei 

df Edward I., Philip got possession of Guienne The 

duchy of Champagne, now annexed to the crown of France, 
lying adjacent to that of Flanders, Philip next endeavored 
to lay hands on that fief: and falling in treacherous nego 
tiation, he carried a cruel and murderous war into the low 
^'u a tries, and laid them desolate. His progress was stoppct* 

»Th77. PURGATORY, Canto XX. S29 

And sent the angelie teacher* back to heaven, 
Still for amends. I se^ the time at hand* 
That forth fmn France inritee another Charles* 
To make himself and kindred better kncwn. 
Unann'd he issues, saving with that lance, 
Which the arch-traitor tilted with ;* and that 
Ho carries with so home a thiost, as rives 
The bowels of poor Florence. No increase 
Of territory hence, but sin and shame 
Shall be his guerdon ; and so much the more 
As he more hghtly deems of such foul wrong. 

by the Flemings at the battle of Conrtrai, and he was soon 
aher compelled to snirender Gnienne to the English king, 
and to make peace with bis muneroos enemies. 

** Now to these three leading epochs of Philip*s life, the 
Poet seems to allade. Hoagio, Gnanto, Lilla e Braggia refer 
to his desolating war in Flanders ; Vendetta, to the battle of 
Conrtral ; la gran dote Provenzale, to the dowry of the king- 
dom of Navarre and the duchy of Champagne ; forza e men- 
zogna, to his conduct respecting Gnienne with its two sister 
provinces, as yon so conTincisi;ly conjectured, Potti e Guas 

f Young Conradins.l Charles of Ai\}nu put Conradino to 
death in 1368, and became King of Naples. See Hell, Canto 
xxviii. 16, and note. Compare Fazio degli Uberti, Dlttamon- 
do, lib. 11. cap. xxix. 

3 TTte angelic teacher.] Thomas Aquinas. He was reported 
to have been poisoned by a physician, who wished to inera^ 
tiate himself with Charles of Aiyou. " In the year 1323, at 
the end of July, by the said Pope John and by his cardinals, 
was canonized at Avignon Thomas Aquinas, of the order of 
Baint Dominic, a master in divinity and philosophy, a man 
most excellent In all science, and who expounded the sense 
of Bcrlptaie better than any one since the time of Augustin. 
He lived in the time of Charles I. King of Sicily; and going 
to the eoancil at Lyons, it is said that he was killed by a 
physician of the said Idng, who put poison for him into some 
sweetmeats, thinking to ingratiate himself with King Charles, 
because he was of the lineage of the lords of Aquino, who 
had rebelled against the king, and doubting lest he should 
be made cardinal : whence the church of God received great 
damage. He died at the abbey of Fossanova, in Canipagna ** 
O. riUami, lib. ix. cap. 318 We shall find him in the Pam- 
dise. Canto x. 

* Another CharUo.] Charles of Valois, brother of Philip 
IV., was sent by Pope Boniface VUI. tn settle the disturbed 
stale of Florence. In consequence of the measures he adopt- 
ed for that purpose, our Poet and his friends were condemned 
to exile and death. See 6. Villani, lib. viii. c. xlviii. 

* ma that lamce. 

Which the arch-traitor tilted voWi.\ 

— — con la lancta 
Con la qual giostrb Giuda. 

If I remembec right, hi one of the old romances, Jaiias b 
"BiMesented tilttng with our Saviour. 

S30 THE VISION. leWft 

[ see the otheri' (who a prisoner late 
Had stepped on shore) exposing to the mart 
His daughter, whom he bargains for, as do 
The Corsairs for their slaves. O avarice ! 
What canst thou more, who hast subdued our Moml 
So wholly to thyself, they feel no care 
Of their own flesh i To hide with direr guilt 
Past ill and future, lo ! the flower-de-luce* 
Enters Alagna; in his Vicar Christ 
Himself a captive, and his mockery 
Acted again. Lo ! to his holy lip 
The vinegar and gall once more applied ; 
And he 'twixt living robbers doom'd to bleed. 
Lo I the new Pilate, of whose cruelty 
Such violence cannot All the measure up, 
With no decree to sanction, pushes on 
Into the temple' his yet eager sails. 
" O sovereign Master!^ when shall I rejoice 

^ The other.] Charles, King of Naples, the eldest son of 
Charles of Anion, having, contrary to the directions of his 
fbtther, engaged with Rnggier de Lanria, the admiral of Peter 
of Aragon, was made pitM>ner, and carried Into Sicily, Jane, 
1284. He afterwards, in consideration of a large sum of 
aioney, married his daughter to Azzo VIII. Marqnls of Fer- 
rara. I talce Lauria to be the hero meant by Petrarch in his 
Triumph of Fame, 

Quel dl Lnrla seguiva 11 Saladino. Cap. 11. v. 151 

Of whom Blagioli says in a note, "Non so chi sia, e non 
trovo n^ vivo nd morto chi mel dica.** ** I know not who he 
.8, and I find no one alive or dead to tell me.*' Msrlana, \1\k 
ziv. cap. 10, calls Lanria " a brave captain, signalized by his 
former victories.** See also the seventh book of G. Villanl*8 
history, and Boccaccio's Decameron, 6. 5, N. 6 ; where be is 
named Ru^g^ri deli* Oria. 

9 TA« flower-de-luee.] Bonifiiee VIII. was seized at Alsgni» 
in Campagna, by the order of Philip IV. in the year 1303, and 
soon after died of grief. O. Villanl, lib. viii. cap. 63. ** As it 
pleased God, the heart of Boniface being petrifled with grieT, 
tlirough the injury he had sustained, when he came to Rome. 
he fell into a strange malady, for he gnawed himself as one 
inntic, and in this state expired.** His character is strongly 
drawn by the annalist in the next chapter. Thus, says Lan- 
Jino, was verified the prophecy of Celestine respecting hun, 
that he should enter on the popedom like a fiix, reign like a 
lion, and die like a dog. 

' Into the temple.] It is uncertain whether our Poet alludes 
itill to the event mentioned in the preceding note, or to the 
destruction of the order of the Templars in 1310, but tha 
latter appears more probable. 

* O eovereign Matter.] Lonibardl, who rightly corrects Ven- 
lart*s explanation of this passage, with which I will not 
'jonble the reader, should have acknowledged, If he was eon- 
.i:im)s of it, that his own Interpretation of it was the eamc 

9ft-123. PURGATORY, Canto XX. 331 

To see the vengeance, which thy wrath, welUplesMHl 
In secret silence broods? — ^While daylight lasts, 
So long what thon didst hear^ of her, sole spouse 
Of the Great Spirit, and on which thou tum'dst 
To me for comment, is the general theme 
Of all our prayen : but, when it darkens, then 
A different strain we utter ; then record 
FVgmalion,* whom his gluttonous thirst of gold 
Made traitor, robber, parricide : the woes 
Of Midas, which his greedy wish ensued, 
Mark'd for derision to all future times: 
And the fond Achan,* how he stole the prey, 
That yet he seems by Joshua's ire pursued. 
Sapphira with her husband next we blame ; 
And praise the forefeet, that with furious ramp 
Spum'd Heliodorus.* AH the mountam round 
Rings with the infamy of Thracia's king,* 
Who slew his Phrygian charge : and last a shout 
Ascends : * Declare, O Crassus I' for thou know'st« 
The flavor of thy gold.' The voice of each 
Now high, now low, as each his impulse prompts, 
Is led through many a pitch, acute or grave. 
Therefore, not singly, I erewhile rehearsed 
That blessedness we tell of in the day : 
But near me, none, beside, his accent raised." 
From him we now had parted, and essay'd 
With utmost eSbria to surmount the way ; 
When I did feel, as nodding to its fall, 

u that before given by Vellntello: "When, O Lord, shall I 
behold that vengeance accomplished, which being already 
determined In thy secret Judgment thy retribnUve Justice 
even now contemplates wiUi delight V* 

1 IVkat aou tUdtt hear.] See v. 21. 

s Pygmalion.'] 

Ille Sycheum 

Impins ante aras, atqoe aari cecns amore, 
Clam ferro incautiun superat 

Firg. JEn.t 1. 1. 350. 

* Aehan.'] Joshua, vii. 

* Heliodorus.] ' " For there appeared unto them an horse, 
with a terrible rider upon him, and adorned with a very fall 
covering, and he ran fiercely and smote at Hellodonu wltli 
his fore feet." 2 Maccabees, iil, 25. 

* Tkracia'a king.] Polymnestor, the murderer of Polydo- 
ms. Hell, Canto zxz. 19. 

^Craasus.] Marcus Crassus, who fell misercbly ia thi 
Pirthian war. See Appian. Parthica. 

B vidi Ciro piii dl sangue avaro, 

Che Crasso d^oro, e Tuno e Taltro n ebbe 

Tanto, che prrve a ciascheduno amaro. Petrarea 

B32 THE VISIOIS. 124-144. 

The mouiftaia tremble ; whence an icy chid 
Seized on nie, as on one to deatli convey'd. 
So shook not Delos, when Latoua there 
Couch'd to bring fi^th the twin-bom eyes oi heaveit 

Forthwith from every side a shout arose 
So vehement, that suddenly my guide [thee.' 

Drew near, oskd cried: *' Doubt not, while I conduct 
'* Glory V* all shouted, (such the sounds mine ear 
Gathered from those, who near me swellM the sounds. ) 
" Glory m the highest be to God" We stood 
Immoveably 6uq>e&ded, like to those, 
The shepherds, who first heard in Bethlehem's field 
That song: till ceased the trembling, and the song 
Was ended: then our hallow'd path resumed, 
Eying the prostmte shadows, who lenew'd 
Their custom'd mourning. Never in my breast 
Did ignorance so struggle with desire 
Of knowledge, if my memory do not err, 
As in that moment ; nor through haste dared I 
To question, nor myself could aught discern 
So on I fared, in thoughtfulness smd dread. 



The two poets are overtaken by the spirit of Statins, wno^ 
being cleansed, is on his way to Paradise, and who explaina 
the cause of the mountain shaking, and of the hymn ; his 
joy at beholding Virgil. 

The natural thirst, ne'er qucnch'd but from the 
Whereof the woman of Samaria craved, [welP 

Excited ; haste, along the cumber'd path. 
After my guide, impell'd ; and pity moved 
My bosom for the 'vengeful doom though just 
When lo ! even as Luke' relates, that Chnst 
Appear'd unto the two upon their way, 
New-risen from liis vaulted grave ; to us 
A shade appear'd, and after us approach'd, 
Contemplating*lhe crowd beneath its feet. 
We were not ware of it ; so first it spake; 
Saying, " God give you peace, my brethren !■' then 
Sudden we tum'd : and Virgil such salute, 
Ao fitted that kind greetmg, gave ; and cried : 

1 The wdl.] " The woman salth unto him. Sir, give UK 
this water, that I thirst not.** JbAn, iv. 15. 
" Luks,} Chapter xxiv. 13. 

f^-4S. PUKGATORY, Canto XXI. 338 

* Peace in the blesied council be thy lot. 

\. warded by that righteous court which me 

To everlasting banidiment exiles." [while 

" How V* he exclaim'd, nor from his s{»eed mean- 
Desisting ;^ *' If that ye be spirits whom God 
Vouchsafes not room above ; who up the height 
Has been thus far your ^de V* To whom the hard : 
** If thou observe the tokens,' which this man, 
Traced by the finger of the angel, bears ; 
'Tis plain that m Sie kingdom of the just [wheei 
He needs must share. But sithence she,' whone 
Spins day and night, for liim not yet had drawn 
That yam, which on the fatal distaff piled, 
Clotho apportions to each wight that breathes ; 
His soul, that sister is to mine and thine, 
Not of herself could mount ; for not like ours 
Her ken : whence I, from forth the ample gulf 
Of hell, was ta'on, to lead him, and will lead 
Far as my lore avails. But, if thou know. 
Instruct us for what cause, the mount erewhile 
Thus shook, and trembled : wherefore all at once 
Snem*d shouting, even from his wave-wash'd foot** 

Thus questioning so tallied with my wish. 
The thirst did feel abatement of its edge 
E'en from expectance. He forthwith replied . 
^' In its devotion, naught irregular 
This mount can witness, or by punctual rule 
Unsanction'd ; here from every change exempt. 
Other than that, which heaven in itself 
Doth of itself receive,^ no influence 
Can reach us. Tempest none, shower, hail, or tuiow, 
Flour frost, or dewy moistness, liigher falls 
Than that brief scale of threefold steps : thick clouds^ 
Nor scudding rack, are ever seen : swift glance 

■ nor from his speed meanwhile 

Desisting.] The uninteUigible reading of almost all the 
ediUons here (but not of all, as Lombardl wcnld lead us tn 
suppose, except his favorite Nidobeatina) is 

E perchd andate forte 1 * 

Vellutello has also that which is no doubt the right : 

E parte andava forte. 

" The tokens.\ The letter? for Peccata, sins, inscribed upon 
ftls forehead by the Angel, in order to his being cleaied of 
'hem in his passage through Purgatory to Paradise 

* 8he.\ Lachesis, one of the three fates. 

— • that, which heaven in itself 

Doth of iUelfreeeiveJ] Yenturl, I think rightly, Interprets 
-Jiin to be light. 


Ne'er lighteos ; nor Thaumaotian^ Iris gloami, 

That yonder often shifts on eaeh side* heaven. 

Vapor adust doth never mount above 

The highest of the trinal stain, whereon 

Peter's vicegerent stands. Lower perchance. 

With various motion rock'd, trembles the soil : 

But here, through wind in eaaihHi'deep hollow pent} 

I know not how, yet never trembled : then 

Trembles, when any spirit feels itself 

So purified, that it may nse, or move 

For rising ; and such loud acclaim' ensues. 

Purification, by the will alone, 

Is proved, that free to change scciety 

Seizes the soul rejoicing in her will. 

Desire of bliss is present from the first ; 

But strong propension hinders, to that wish' 

By the just ordinance of heaven opposed ; 

Propension now as eager to fulfil 

The allotted torment, as erewhile to sin. 

And I, who in this punishment had lain 

Five hundred years and more, but now have felt 

Free wish for happier clime. Therefore thou felt'st 

The mountain tremble ; and the spirits devout 

Heard'st, over all his limits, utter praise 

To that liege Lord, whom I entreat their joy 

To hasten." Thus he spake : and, since the draugltl 

Is grateful ever as the thirst is keen, 

No words may speak my fulness of content 

'< Now," said the instructor sage, " I see the net* 
That takes ye here ; and how the toils are loosed ; 
Why rocks the mountain, and wny ye rejoice. 
Vouchsafe, that from tliy lips I next may learn 
Who on the earth thou wast ; and wherefore here, 

i Tka^maniianJ] Figlla di Tanmante. 

B4miiavTos Ovydnip. Heswd, 7^leo/.,790. 

Commure Plato, Thect., v. il. p. 76. Bip. edit. Virg. Ma^ \x.^ 
sad Spensei Faery Q,neen, b. v. c. ill. st. 2S 
Fair is Thaumantias In her crystal gown. 

* To that wish.} Lombardi here alters the sense by readiBH 
with the Nidobeatina, '* con tal vofflia,** Instead of ** c<mtra 
vogUa,*' and explains it: *' With the same Ineflbctnal will, 
with which man was contrary to sin, while he resolved on 
sinning, even with the same, would he wish to rise tram his 
tomient in Fnrgatory, at the saoM tUne that thiongh Indina* 
:ion to satisfy Uie divine justice he yet remains there.** 

* I»eetka net.] ** I perceive that ye nro detained heie li> 
pour wish to satisfy the divine justice ** 

4»-110. PURGATORY. Canij XXI. 885 

So maLy an age, weit pni8tnite."«>" In tn&t time, 

When the good Titos,' with Heaven's King to help^ 

Avenged those piteous gashes, whence the olood 

By Judas sold did issue ; with the name* 

Most lastmg and most honored, there, was I 

Abundantly renown'd," the shade replied, 

** Not yet with faith endued. So passing sweet 

My vocal spirit ; from Tolosa,* Rome 

To herself drew me, where I merited 

A myrtle garland^ to inwreath my brow 

Statius they name me still. Of Thebes I sang. 

And next of great Achilles ; but i' the way 

Fefl* with the second burden. Of my flame 

Those sparkles were the seeds, which I derived 

From the bright fountain of celestial fire 

That feeds unnnmber'd lamps ; the song I mean 

Which sounds Mneatf wanderings : that the breast 

I hung at ; that the nurse, from whom my veins 

Drank inspiration : whose authority 

Was ever sacred with me. To have lived 

Coeval with the Mantuan, I would bide 

The revolution of another sun 

Beyond my stated years in banishment." 

The Mantuan, when he heard him, tum'd to me 
And holding silence, by his countenance 
Enjoin'd me silence : but the power, which wills, 
Bears not supreme control : laughter and tears 
Follow so closely on the passion prompts them, 
They wait not for the motions of the will 

> When, the good THtnt.] When It was so ordered by the 
divine Providence that Titus, by the destruction of Jerusalem, 
should avenge the death of our Saviour on the Jews. 

> T%e name.\ The name of Poet. 

s Prom TUma.] Dante, as many others bav« done, con 
founds Statius the poet, who was a Neapolitan, with a rheto* 
rician of the same name, who was of Tolosa, or Thouloose. 
rhu^ Chancer, Temple of Fame, b. Hi. 

The TholBson, that height Stace. 

%nd Boeeaccio, as cited by Lombardi: 

E Stazio di Toloea ancoracaro. Amoroe. Fit. CanL & 

* A mifrtle garland.] 

Et V08, lauri, earpam, et te, prozinia myrte. 

rirg. Ed^ IL 

Clual vaghezza di lauro 1 o qval dl mirto ? Petmrca 

Yet once mcMe, O ye lamels, and once more 

Ye myrtles brown. MiUvn, Lfeidaa 

FkilJ] Statius lived to write only a small part of the 

336 THE VISION. 111-131 

[n natures most sincere/ I did but smile,' 
As one who winks ; and thereupon the shade 
Broke off, and peered into mine eyes, where htst 
Our looks interpret. " So to good event 
Mayst thou conduct such great emprize," he cried 
" Say, why across thy visage beamed, but now. 
The lightning of a smile." On either part 
Now am I straitened ; ' one conjures me speak, 
The other to silence binds me : whence a sigh 
I utter, and the sigh is heard. " Speak on," 
The teacher cried : " and do not fear to speak ; 
But tell him what so earnestly he asks." 
Whereon I thus: ** Perchance, O ancient spirit 
Thou marvell'st at my smiling. There is room 
For yet more wonder. He, who guides my ken 
On high, he is that Mantuan, led by whom 
Thou didst presume of men and gods to sing. 
If other cause thou deem'dst for which I smiled. 
Leave it as not the true one ; and believe 
Those words, thou spakest of him, indeed the cause. 
Now down he iSent to embrace my teacher's feet 
Bat he forbade him : *< Brother ! do it not : 
Thou art a shadow, and behold'st a shade." 
He, rismg, answer'd thus : '< Now hast thou proved 
The force and ardor of the love I bear thee, 
When I forget we are but things of air. 
And, as a substance, treat an empty shade " 



Dante, Virgil, and Statins motint to the sixth cornice, when 
the sin of gluttony is cleansed, the two Latin Poets di» 
coursing by the way. Turning to the right, they find a tree 
hung with sweet-smelling fruit, and watered by a shower 
that issues from the rock. Vcdces ore heard to proceed ftom 
among the leaves, recording examples of temperance 

Now we had left the angel, who had tum*d 
To the sixth circle our ascending step ; 
One gash from off my forehead razed ; while they. 
Whose wishes tend to justice, shouted forth, 
X Blessed !"' and ended with " I thirst:" and I, 

y I did hut fmile.] " I smiled no mora than one would dc 
'Arho wished by a smile to intimate his conseioasneas of any 
:hing to another perron.** 

^ Bles8ed.\ ** Blessed bo they which do I vnfer and thin* 
kOrr righteon^ness, for tHey shall be fliteo.** Mttt.yr 6 

d-13. PURGATORY C^anto XXII. 887 

More nimble than along the other straits. 
So journey'd, that, without the sense of toil, 
I followed upward the swift-footed shades ; 
When Virgil thus began : " Let its pure flame 
From Tirtue flow, and love can never fail 
To warm another's bosom, so the light 
Shine manifestly forth. Hence, from that hour; 
When, 'mongst us in the purlieus of the deep, 
Came down the spirit of Aquinum's bard,' 
Who told of thine affection, my good will 
Hath been for thee of quality as strong 
As ever link'd itself to one not seen. 
Therefore these stairs will now seem short to me. 
But tell me : and, if too secure, I loose 
The rein with a friend's license, as a friend 
Forgive me, and speak now as with a friend : 
How chanced it covetous desire could fiud 
Place in that bosom, 'midst such ample store 
Of wisdom, as thy zeal had treasured there ?" 

First somewhat moved to laughter by his wo^xlS) 
Statius replied : ** Each syllable of thine 
Is a dear pledge of love. Things oft appear, 
That minister false matter to our doubts. 
When their true causes are removed from sight. 
Thy question doth assure me, thou believest 
I was on earth a covetous man ; perhaps 
Because thou found'st me in that circle placed. 
Know then I was too wide of avarice : 
And e'en for that excess, thousands of moons 
Have wax'd and waned upon my sufferings. 
And were it not that I with heedful care 
Noted, where thou exclaim'st as if in ire 
With human nature, < Why,' thou cursed thirst 
Of gold .' dost not with juster measure guide 
The appetite of mortals?' I had met 
The fierce encounter" of the voluble rock. 
Then was I ware that, with too ample wing, 
Tho hands may haste to lavishment ; and tuni'd 

* j9minum*9 bard.] Javenal had celebmted his conteiupO' 
"ary, Stattus, Sat. vii. 83; though some critics imagine that 
Ihere is a secret derision couched under his praise. 

* Wkif.] Quid non mortalia pectora eogis, 

Anri sacra fames 1 Firg, JBn., lib. lii. 57. 

Venturi supposes that Danto might have mistaken the 
oieaniDg of the word aaera, and construed it " holy,'^ insteaj 
cf " cursed.** Bat I see no necessity for having recourse to 
M improbable a conjecture. 

> TJit fierce encounter.] See HeJl, Canto vii. S6. 


888 THE VISION. I4^ 

\b from my other evil, so from this, 

In penitence. How many from their grave 

Shall with shorn locks^ arise, who living, ay, 

And at life's last extreme, of this oflfence, 

Through ignorance, did not repent ! And know, 

The fault, which lies direct from any sin 

In level opposition, here, with that, 

Wasttfl its men rankness on one common hef^ 

Therefore, if I have been with those, who wail 

Their avarice, to cleanse me ; through revene 

Of their transgression^ such hath been my lot" 

To whom the sovereign of the pastoral song . 
*' While thou didst sing that cruel warfare waged 
By the twin sorrow of Jocasta's womb,* 
From thy discourse with Clio' there, it seems 
As faith had not been thine ; without the which. 
Good deeds suffice not And if so, what sun 
Rose on thee, or what candle pierced the dark. 
That thou didst after see to hoise the sail, 
And follow where the fisherman had led?" 

He answering thus: *' By thee conducted fust. 
I entered the Parnassian grots, and quafiTd 
Of the clear spring ; illumined first by thee. 
Opened mine eyes to God, Thou didst, as one. 
Who, journeying through the darkness, bears a bght 
Behind, that profits not himself, but makes 
His followers wise, when thou exclaimedst, < Lo ' 
A renovated world,* Justice retum'd. 
Times of primeval innocence restored, 
And a new race descended from above.* 
Poet and Christian both to thee I owed. 
That thou mayst mark more clearly what I traco, 
My hand shall stretch forth to inform the lines 
With livelier coloring. Soon o'er all the world, 
By messengers from heaven, the true belief 

> mth 9k<nn lock*.] Bee Hell, >uito vU. 58. 
s The twin torrov of Joea§ta't w«mb.] Eteocles and PDI9 
» ffia aio.] 

Qxtem prlos heroum Clio dablsl immodleam wd 

T)'dea 1 lanrigeil subltos an vatis hiatus 1 

Stat^ TTubaid^ L 4i. 
• Ji rtn»vaUd w9rldJ\ 

Maffnns ab integro MBcIomm naadtor ordo. 

Jam redit et Vii^o ; radennt Satnmia regna ; 

Jam nova progenies mbIo demittitnr alta 

Por the Rpplicatinn of Vlrgirs prophecy to the iBeaiBatfos^ 
lee Nacalis Alexander, Hbt. Ecd. Gtaec. i. Dissert 1. FmIh 
1079, V. i. p. 106. 

»-105. PURGATOBY, Canto XXII. 830 

Teem'd now prolific ; and that word of tltinc, 

Accordant, to the new initructons chimed- 

Induced by which agreement, I was wont 

Resort to them ; and soon their sanctity 

So won upon me, that, Domitian*s rage 

Pursuing them, I mix'd my tean with thein ; 

And, while on earth I stay'd, still suceor'd them ; 

And their most righteous customs made me scorn 

All sects besides. Before' I led the Greeks, 

In tuneful fiction, to the streams of Thebes, 

I was baptized ; but secretly, through fear, 

Remam*d a Christian, and conformed long iima 

To Pagan rites. Four centuries and more, 

I, for Siai lukewammesB, was fain to pace 

Round the fourth circle. Thou then, who hast raised 

The covering which did hide such blessing from mo, 

While much of this ascent is yet to climb. 

Say, if thou know, where our old Terence' bides, 

Caecilius,' Plautus, Varro ."* if condemn'd 

They dwell, and in what province of the deep." 

" These," said my guide, ** with Persius and myself, 

And others many more, are with that Greek,* 

Of mortals, the most cherished by the nine. 

In the first ward' of darkness. There, oft-times, 

We of that mount hold converse, on whose top 

For aye our nurses live. We have the bard 

Of Fella,' and the Teian," Agatho," 

1 Btfore,] Before I had composed the Thebaid. 

* Our old Terence.} ^ Antico,** which is found in many o> 
the old editions, seems prefenble to " amico." 

i C^cSiue.} Cccilios Statins, a Latin comic poet, of whose 
works some fragments only remain. Our Poet had Horace in 
his eye. 

Dicitnr Afrani toga convenisse M enandro, 
Ptamas ad exemplar Sicoli propeiare Epicharmi, 
Viacere Cseliius gravitate, Terentius arte. 

I^L, Ub. U. 1. 

< Fdtre.] '*Cliiam mnlta pene omnia tradldit Vairo.* 
Quintiliajt, Inetit. OraL, lib.zii. *' Vix aperto ad philosophiav 
adito, primus M. Varro veternm omnium doctissimos.** 8a 
loiet. de liherie reete inetU. Edit Lugd. 1 »3, p. 137. 

* That Greek.] Homer. 

* /« thefirH wonLI In Limbo. 
T The hard 

Of Petto.] Euripides. 

* The TVum.} Euriplde v* ^ nosco e Anacreonte. 

The Bfonte Cassino MS. reads ** Antifonte" ** Antipho,** hi 
itead of ^ Anacreonte.*' Dante probably knew little more ai 
Greek writers than the names. 

• AMOhc.] Chaucer, speaking of the Daisy as a reimsenla 
titm m Alcestis, refers to Agaton : 

840 THE VISION. MO-ltt 

Simonidei, iind many a Grecian elso 

[ngarlanded with laurel. Of thy train,* 

Antigone ib there, Delphile, 

Argia, and as sonowfnl as erst 

Ismene, and who show'd Langia's ware .^ 

Deldamia with her sisterB there, 

And blind Tiresias' daughter,* and the bride 

No wonder is thongh Jove her stellifie, 
As tellith Agaton for her goodnesse. 

Legends of Good Wbmtn, 

And Mr. Tyrwhltt tells ns that ** he has nothing to say of thl« 
fvriter except that one of the same name is quoted In the 
Prol. to the tragedie of Cambises by Thomas Preston. Theve 
is no reason," he adds, " for supposing with Gloss. Ur. that a 
philosopher of Samos Is meant, or any of the Agathoes of 
antiquity." I am inclined, however, to believe that Chancer 
must have meant Agatho, the dramatic writer, whose name, 
at least, appears to have been familiar in the middle ages ; 
for, besides the mention of him in the text, he is quoted by 
Dante in the Treatise De Monarchic, lib. lii. '* Deus per non- 
cium facere non potest, genita non esse, genita, juxta sen 
tentiam Agathonts.'* The original is to be found in Aristotle 
Ethic. Nicom., lib. vi. c. 2. 

Mtfvov y^ airoD luu ^tbs vrtplcKtrat 
*JLYhtira xoiciv avc' uv ^ trtrfpayftiva, 

Agatho is mentioned by Xenophon in his Symposium, by 
Plato in the Protagoras, and in the Banquet, a favorite 
book with our author, and by Aristotle in his Art of Poetry, 
where the following remarkable passage occurs respecting 
him, flrom which I will leave it to the reader to decide whether 
it is possible that the allusion in Chaucer might have arisen : 
iv Meus fih Iv ^ i6o tAv ywptfiuv ivriv dkoiidruVf r^ U 
SX\a vsvoiriniva' iv kvlaii hi oWiv oJop h rip *Ayddmv% 

Mnara vstotiiraiy Kot ohSiv ^rrov si^pafvei. Edit. 17M, 
p. 33. *' There are, however, some tragedies, ia which one 
or two of the names are historical, and the rest feigned; 
there are even some, in which none of the names are hlsf art- 
cal ; such is Agatho*s tragedy called The Flower; for in that 
all is invention, both incidents and names ; and yet it pleases *' 
AritMle't Treatise 0n Po«ery, by Thomas Twining, Bvo Edit 
161S, vol. i. p. 1S8. 

1 Of tkf train. ] ** Of those eelebreted in thy Poem.** 

* JVha th&w'd Langia*s wave.] Hypslplle. Pee note to 
CSanto xzvi. v. 87. 

* TYrMtu* davghter.} Dante, as some have thought, had 
forgotten that he had placed Manto, the daughter of Tireaiaa, 
among the sorcerers. Bee Hell, Canto xz. Yellutello endeavon, 
rather awkwardly, to reconcile the apparent Ineonslsteney 
by observing, that although she was placed there as a sinner, 
yet, as one of &mous memory, she had also a place among 
<he worthies in Limbo 

li»-138. PURGATORY, Canto XXII. 841 

Sea-bon of Peleiu."^ Either poet now 
Was alent ; and no longer by the ascent 
Or the steep walls obstructed, round them cast 
Inqmring eyes. Four handmaids' of the day 
Had finished now their office, and the fifth 
Was at the chariot-beam, directing still 
Its flamy pomt aloof ; when thus my guide : 
" Methinks, it well behooves us to the brink 
Bend the light shoulder, circuiting the mount, 
As we have ever used." So custom there 
Was usher to the road ; the which we chose 
Less doubtful, as that worthy shade' complied. 

They on before me went : I sole pursued, 
Listening their speech, that to my thoughts coniey'd 
Mysterious lessons of sweet poesy. 
But soon they ceased ; for midway of the road 
A tree we found, with goodly fruitage hung, 
And pleasant to the smell : and as a fir. 
Upward from bough to bough, less ample spreads ; 
So downward this less ample spread i* that none, 
Methinks, aloft may climb. Upon the side, 
That closed our path, a liquid crystal fell 
From the steep rock, and through the sprays above 
Streamed showering. With associate step the bards 
Drew near the plant ; and, from amidst the leaves, 
A voice was heard : *' Ye shall be chary of me ;" 

Lombardi, or rather the Delia Cnisca academicians, excnae 
our author better, by observing that Tiresias had a daughter 
named Daphne. See Diodorus Siculus, lib. iv. ^ 6G. I have 
here to acknowledge a communication made to me by the 
learned writer of an anonymous letter, who observes that 
Manto and Daphne are only different names for the same 
person ; and that Servius, in his Commentary on the ^neid, 
X. 198, says, that some make Manto the prophetess to be a 
daughter of Hercules. 

1 TTkebride 
Sea-bam of PeleuB.] Thetis. 

3 Hiicr handmaids.] Compare Canto xU. v. 74. 

3 That worthy akadcl Statius. 

* Downward this U»» ample spread.] The early commenta 
ton understand that this tree had its root upward and the 
boughs downward; and this opinion, however derided bf 
their successors, is not a little countenanced by the imitation 
of Frexzi, who lived so near the time of our Poet : 

Sn dentro<aI delo avea la sua radice, 
B glu hiverso terra 1 rami rnande. 

/({ QuaJnV., lib. r.cap I 

— — It had in heaven 
rts root above, and downward to the earth 
S(ietch*d forth the branches. 

842 IHE VISION 188.iea 

And after added : ** Mary took more thong) it 
For joy and honor of the nuptial feast, 
Than for herself, who answers now for you 
The women of old Rome' were satisfied 
With water for their beverage. Daniel' fed 
On pulse, and wisdom gain'd. The primal age 
Was beautiful as gold : and hunger then 
Made acorns tasteful ; thirst, each rivulet 
Run nectar. Honey and locusts were the food 
Whereon the Baptist in the wilderness 
Fed, and that eminence of glory reach*d 
And greatness, which th' Evangelist records.** 



They are overtaken by the spirit of Forese, who had been s 
friend of our Poet*s on earth, and who now inveighs bit- 
terly against the immodest dress of their countrywomen at 

On the green leaf mine eyes were fixM, like hin 
Who throws away his days in idle chase 
Of the diminutive birds, when thus I heard 
The more than father warn me : " Son ! our tinio 
Asks thriftier using. Linger not : away.*' 

Thereat my face and steps at once I tum'd 
Toward the sages, by whose converse cheer'd 
I joumey'd on, and felt no toil : and lo I 
A sound of weeping, and a song : " My lips,* 

1 Mary took more thought.} *' The blessed virgin, who an- 
swers for you now in heaven, when she said to Jesas, at the 
marriage in Cana of Galilee, ' they have no wine,' reganied 
not the gratification of her own taste, but the honor of tho 
nnptlal beinquet." 

* 7%« vomen of old Rome.] See Valerius Maximus, 1. IL c 1. 

s Daniel.] ** Then said Daniel to Melzar, whom the prinoe 
of the eunuchs had set over Daniel, Hananioh, Ifichael, and 
Azariah, Prove thy servants, I tieseech thee, ten days ; and 
let them give us pulse to eat, and water to drink.** Daniel, L 

** Thus Melzar took away the portion of their meat, and the 
nine that they should drink : and gave them p«ilie. As faf 
tliese four children, God gave them knowledge and skill lo 
all learning and wisdom : and Daniel had anderstandinf in 
ttU visions and dreams.'* IbitU, 16, 17. 

* JIftr '(>••] '*0 Lord, open then my lips ; and my nioail] 
sbill show forth thy praise." Pgalm 11. 15. 


10-37. PURGATORY, Canto XXIII. 348 

O Lord V* and these so mingled, it gave biiih 
To pleasure and to pain. " O Sire beloved I 
Say what is this I hear." Thus I inquired. 

*< SpiritSi" said he, '• who, as they go, j>erchaucei 
Their debt of duty pay." As on their road 
The thoughtful pilgrims, overtaking some 
Not known unto them, turn to tliem, and look, 
But stay not ; thus, approachmg from behind 
With speedier motion, eyed us, as they pass'd, 
A crowd of spurits, silent and devout. 
The eyes' of each were dark and hollow ; pale 
Their visage, and so lean withal, the bones 
Stood staring through the skin. I do not think 
Thus dry and meager Erisicthon showM, 
When pinch'd by sharp-set famine to the quick. 

*' Lo !" to myself I mused, << the race, who lost 
Jerusalem, when Mary^ with dire beak 
Prey'd on her child." The sockets seem'd as rings," 
From which the gems were dropp'd. Who reads the 
Of man upon his forehead, there the M [name* 

Had traced most plainly. Who would deem, that 
Of water and an apple could have proved [scent 
Powerful to generate such pining want. 
Not knowing how it wrought ? While now I stood, 
Wondering what thus could waste them, (for the cause 
Of their gaunt hollowness and scaly rind 
Appeared not,) lo ! a spirit turnM his eyes 
In their deep-sunken cells, and fastened them 

The ejfM.] Compare Ovid, Metam., lib. vili. 801. 
Hirtus erat crtnis ; cava lamina, pallor in ore : 

Dora cutis, per qaam ipectari viscera posseat : 
Ossa sub incorvU exstabant arida lombis. 

[9'^en Mary.] Josephus, de Bella Jnd., lib. vl\. c. zxi. p 
054. £d. Genev., fol. 1611. The shocking story is well told. 

Senza fior prato o senza gemma anello. 

Petrarc&, Son. Laseiata Aat, morts, 

O ring of which the rubie is outfall. 

CAaiceer, Trmlua and Crei<ndej b. v 

In this hat.U 

Met I my father with his bleeding rings, 
Their precious stones new lost. 

Shakspearef Lear, act v. scei i 3 

* Who reads the nanu.\ " He who pretends to dlstingidsh 
the letters which form OMO in the features of tho human 
fiwe, might easily have traced out the M on their emaciated 
countenances. ' The temples, nose, and forehead aro sup* 
posed to represent this letter; and the eyes the two O* 
placed within each side of it. 

844 THE VISION. JMb \ 

On me, then cried with yehemence aloud : 
" What grace is this Youchsafed me 1" By bi» lookf 
I ne'er had recognised him : but the voice 
Brought to my knowledge what his cheer conceal' d 
Remembrance of his alter'd lineaments 
Was kindled from that spark ; and I agnized 
The visage of Forese.* " Ah ! respect 
This wan and leprous-wither'd skin," thus h<» 
Suppliant implored, " this macerated flesh. 
Speak to me truly of thyself. And who 
Are those twain spirits, that escort thee there ? 
Be it not said thou scom'st to talk with me. * 

" That face of thine," I answer'd him, " which dead 
I once bewail'd, disposes me not less 
For weeping, when I see it thus transform^. 
Say then, by Heaven, what blasts ye thus 1 The 
I wonder, ask not speech from me : unapt [whilst 
Is he to speak, whom other will employs." 

He thus : " The water and the plant, we pass'd* 
With power are gifted, by the eternal will 
Infused ; the which so pines me. Every spirit. 
Whose song bewails his gluttony indulged 
Too grossly, here in hunger and in thirst 
Is purified. The odor, which the fruit, 
And spray that showers upon the verdure, breathe. 
Inflames us with desire to feed and drink. 
Nor once alone, encompassing our route, 
We come to add fresh fuel to the pain : 
Pain, said I ? solace, rather : for that will. 
To the tree, leads us, by which Christ was led 
To call on Eli, joyful, when he paid 
Our ransom from his vein." I answering thus ; 
" Forese ! from that day, in which the world 
For better life thou changedst, not five years 
Have circled. If the powei' of sinnuig more 
Were first concluded in thee, ere thou knew'st 
That kindly grief which re-espouses us 
To God, how hither art thou come so soon? 

> E»rete.\ One of the brothem of Plccarda ; he who Is 
tipoken of In the next Canto, and Introdaced in the Faxwm 
Canto lU. Cionaccl, in his Btoria della Beala ITmUlana, 
Parte iv. cap. i., is refened to by Lombardi In order to show 
that Forese was also the brothet of Corso Donati, our author*f 

g>litlcal enemy. See next Canto, v. 81. Tiraboschl, aitei 
rescimbeni, ennniorates him am>>ng the Tuscan poets. Btor. 
iella Foes. It, v. i . p. 139. 

s XT M« potMT.] " If thou didst delav thy repentance to the 
last, when thou hadst lost the pow «ff of sinning, how h^ipenji 
it thou art arrived heii« *: «nrlv1" 


I thought to find thee lower,' there, where time 
Is recompense for time." He straight replied : 
" To drink up the sweet wormwood of affliction 
I have been brought thus early, by the tears 
Streamed down my Nella's* cheeks. Her prayeif 

Her sighs have drawn me from the coast, where oft 
Expectance lingers ; and have set me free 
From the other cu-cles. In the sight of God 
80 much the dearer is my widow prized, 
She whom I loved so fondly, as she ranks 
Mere singly eminent for virtuous deeds. 
The tract, most barbarous of Sardinia's isle,' 
Hath dames more chaste, and modester by far. 
Than that wherem I left her. O sweet brother ! 
What wouldst thou have me say ?^ A time to come 
Stands full withm my view, to which this hour 
Shall not be counted of an ancient date, 
When from tho pulpit shall be loudly wam'd 
The unblushing dames of Florence,* lest they bare 
Unkerchief 'd bosoms to the common gaze. 
What savage women hath the world e'er seen, 
What Saracens,* for whom there needed scourge 
Of spiritual or other discipline. 
To force them walk with covering on their Ihnbs ? 

1 Lower.] In the Ante-Pargatory. See Canto ii. 

9 My jraia.] The wife of Forese. 

s 7^ tract, most barharous of Sardinia'9 isle.] The Bar 
ha/fia is a part of Sardinia, to which that name was given, on 
account of tbe unciviliased state of its inhabitants, who arp 
said to have gone nearly naked. 

* ffkatwouldttthouhavemetay?] The interrogative, which 
LoDibardi wonld dismiss from this place, as unmeaning and 
saperflnoos, appears to me to he the natural result of a deep 
feeling, and to prepare us for the invective that follows. 

* The ttnhluahing iamea of Florence.] Landino*s note ex- 
hibits a curious instance of the changeableness of his coun- 
trywomen. He even goes beyond the acrimony of the original. 
**ln those days,'* says the commentator, "no less than in 
ows, the Fkxentine ladles exposed the neck and bosom, n 
dress, no doubt, mora suitable to a harlot than a matron. But, 
as they changed soon after, insomuch that they wore collars 
up to the chin, covering the whole of the neck and throat, so 
have I hopes they will change again ; not indeed so much 
fma\ motives of decency, as through that fickleness which 
penraaes Bvery action of their lives." 

< SaraeenM.] "This word, during the middle ages, was in- 
lUseriminately applied to Pagans and Mahometans ; in shorty 
to all nations (except the Jews) who did not profess Chris- 
{ianity.** Mr. EUio*» apeeimens of Early English Meirieal 
SomanceOt vol 1. p. 196, (a note,) Lond. 8vo. 161)5. 

346 rH*^ VISION. 100-iau 

But did they see, the shameless ones, what Heaveu 
Wails on swift wing toward them while I speak, 
Their mouths were oped for howling: they shall taste 
Of sorrow (unless foresight cheat me here) 
Or ere the cheek of him be clothed with down, 
Who is now rock'd with lullaby* asleep. 
Ah ! now, my brother, hide thyself no more : 
Thou seest^ how not I alone, but all. 
Gaze, where thou veil'st the intercepted sun." 
Whence I replied : ** If thou recall to mind 
What we were once together, even yet 
Remembrance of those days may grieve thee sore. 
That I forsook that life, was due to him 
Who there precedes me, some few evenings past, 
When she was round, who shines with sister lamp 
To his that glisters yonder," and I show'd 
The sun. *' 'Tis he, who through profoundest night 
Of the true dead has brought me, with this flesh 
As true, that follows. From that gloom the aid 
Of his sure comfort drew me on to climb, 
And, climbing, wind along this mountain-steep, 
Which rectifies in you whate'er the world 
Made crooked and depraved. I have his word, 
That he will bear me company as far 
As till I come where Beatrice dwells: 
But there must leave me. Virgil is that spirit, 
Who thus hath promised," and I pointed to him ; 
'* The other is that shade, for whom so late 
Your realm, as he arose, exulting, shock 
Through every pendent cliff and rocky bound." 



Porese points out several others by name <v'ho ate hero, lUte 
himselC purifying themselves from the vice of flattony: 
and, among the rest, Baonaggiunta of Laoea» with whom 
our Poet converses* Forese thea prodlcta ttie vkdeat oiMi 
of Dante*s political enemy, Cpno Donati ; and, when ho 
has quitted them^the Poet, in oompanv with Sutins and 
Virgil, arrives at another tree, liom whence issue v(riMs 

1 fVith lullabp.] 

Coltti che mo si consola eon nanna. 

* Nanna** is said to have been the soand with which the Flo- 
lentine women hashed their ohUdrea to sleep. 

* Tk&u 9te»tJ} Thou seest how we wonder thai (hoa ai« 
hem in a living body. 

1-ao. PURGATORY, Canto XXIV. 847 

that reeord ancient examples of glattony ; and proceeding 
forwards, they are directed hy an angel, which wav 
ascend to the next cornice of the monnttiin. 

Our journey was not slacken'd by our talk, 
Nor yet our talk by journeying. Still we spake, 
And urged our travel stoutly, like a ship 
When the wind sits astern. The shadowy forms, 
That seem'd things dead and dead again, drew in 
At their deep-delved orbs rare wonder of me. 
Perceiving I had life ; and I my words 
Continued, and thus spake : " He journeys* up 
Perhaps more tardily than else he would. 
For others' sake. But tell me, if thou know'st. 
Where is Piccarda ?* Tell me, if I see 
Any of mark, among this multitude 
Who eye me thus." — '* My sister (she for whom, 
'Twizt beautiful and good,' I cannot say 
Which name was fitter) wears e'en now her crown, 
And triumphs in Olympus." Saymg this. 
He added : " Smce spare diet^ hath so worn 
Our semblance out. His lawful here to name 
Each one. This," and his finger then he raised, 
' Is Buonaggiunta,' — Buonaggiunta, he 

1 Hejoumeyt.'] The sonl of Statins perhaps proceeds more ' 
slowly, in order that he may enjoy as long as possible th<* 
company of Virgil. 

3 Pieearda.] See Paradise, Canto iii. 

* * Twixt heautifui and good.} 

Tra hclla e onesta 

dual fa piu, lascib in dubblo. 

PetrareOt Son. Ripensando a fud, 
*I)ieL] Dieta. 

And dieted with fasting every day. 

Spenser^ F. Q., b. i. c. 1. st. S(v 

Spare fast that oft with gods doth diet 

Milton, R PenMoroto 

Bu9na£gi%nta.] Bnona^nnta Urbiclanl, of Lncca 
* There is a canzone bythis poet, printed in the collection 
inde by the Ginnti, (p. 909,) and a sonnet to Gnido Gnini- 
3elii in that made by CorbinelU, (p. 109,) from which we col- 
lect that he lived not about 1330, as Qnadrio supposes, (t IL 
p. ISO,) bat towards the end of the thirteenth century Con- 
cerning other poems by Baonagginnta, that are preserved in 
MS. in some libraries, Cxeselmbeni may be consulted.** TV 
mi*McJb», Mr. Matkias's mL, v. L p. 115. lluree of these, 
canzone, a sonnet, and a batlata, have been published in the 
Anecdota Literarla ex MSS. Codiclbos erata.Svo. Roma, (no 
Tear; v. iiL p. 453. He is thus mentioned by our authw in 
his Treatise de Volg. Eloq., lib. 1. cap. xiii. **Next let us 
come to the Tuscans, whu, made senseless by their folly, 
^m^Hntly assume to themselves the title of a vemacnlai 

g48 THE VISION. Q1-* 

Of Lucca, and that face beyond him, pierced 
Unto a leaner fineness than the rest, 
Had keeping of the chorch ; he was of Tours, 
And purges by wan abstinence away 
Bolaena's eels and cups of muscadel "' 

diction, more excellent than the rest ; nor are the vulgar alom 
misled by this wild opinion, but many fitmons men have 
maintained ii, as Guittone d*Arezzo, who never addicted him 
self to the polished style of the court, Buonaminnts of iAcca, 
Gallo of Pisa, Mino Mocato of Sienna, and Brunetto of Flo 
rence, whose compositions, if there shall be leisure for exam* 
ining theni, will be found not to be in the diction of the court 
but fai that of their respective cities.*' 

As a specimen of Buonasgiunta's manner, the reader wit 
take the following Sonnet from Corbineili*s Collection added 
to the Bella Mano : — 

Q,nal uomo k in su la rota per Ventura, 

Nod si rallegri, perch^ sia innalzato ; 

Che quando piu si mostra chiara, e puia, 

Allor si glra, ed hallo disbassatp. 
E nnllo prato ha si fresca verdure, 

Che 11 Buoi fieri non cangino stato ; 

£ questo saccio, che avvien per nature 

Piu greve cade, chi piu d montato. 
Non si dee uomo troppo rellegrare 

Di gren grende^a, n6 tenere spene ; 

Che egli i gren doglia, allegrezza falUre ; 
Anzi si debbe molto umiliare ; 

Non far soperchio, perch4 aggia gren bene , 

Che ogni mcmte a valle dee venire. 
Lm Bella Mano e Rime AnUckt,ediz. Firente, 171S, p. ITC 

What man is raised on Fortune*s wheel aloft, 

Let him not triumph in his bliss elate ; 
For when she smiles with visage fidr and soft. 

Then whirls she round, reveraing his estate 
Fresh was tlie verdure in the sunny croft, 

Yet soon the wither*d flowerets met their fate ; 
And things exalted most, as chanceth oft, 

Fall firom on high to earth with ruin great. 
Therefore ought none too greatly to rejoice 

In greatness, nor too fast his hope to hold : 

For one, tiiat triumphs, great pidn is to ikll. 
But l.twiy meelmess is the wiser choice ; ' 

And he must down, that is too proud and 1x>*d . 

For every mountain stoopeth to the vale. 

1 H« waa of 7Viir«.] Simon of Tours became pope with 
the titie of Martin IV. In 1381, and died in 138S. 

3 BoUeiuCa eela and eups of mu»cadel.\ The Nidobeatina 
edition and the Monte Cassino MS. agree in reading 

L*anguille di Bolsena in la vemaccia ; 

from which it would seem, that Martin the Fourth refined so i 

much on epicurism as to have his eels killed by being put Into i 

the wine called vemaccia, in order to heightei; their fbvor. | 

The Latin annotator on the MS. relates, ttiat the fbllowlpp i 
tpitaph was inscribed on the sepalctan of the pope : 

Gandent angnlllae, quod mortaos hie Jacet Ule, 
Qui quar\ nMiite teas excorlabat eaa. 


He showed me many othere, one by one 
And all, as they were named, seem'd well cdnMUt * 
For no darii gesture I discem'd in any. 
I saw, through hmiger, Ubaldino^ grmd 
His teeth on emptiness ; and Boniface,' 
That waved the crosier" o'er a numerous flock * 
I saw the Marquis,^ who had time erewhile 
To swill at Forli with less drought ; yet so, 
Was one ne'er sated. I howe'er, like him 
That, gazing 'midst a crowd, singles out one. 
So singled him of Lucca ; for methought 
Was none amongst them took such note of me. 
Somewhat I heard him whisper of Gentucca :* 
The sound was indistinct, and murmur'd there,* 
Where justice, that so strips them, fix'd her sting. 

<< Spirit !" said I, " it seems as thou wouldst fain 
Speak with me. Let me hear thee. Mutual wish 
To converse prompts, which let us both indulge." 

He, answering, stmight began : " Woman is borKf 
Whose brow no wimple shades yet,'' that shall make 

1 Vbaldino.} Ubaldino degli Ubaldini, of PUa, in the Flor 
entine territory. 

^Boniface.] Archbishop of RaTenna. By Ventori he is 
called Bonifarao de* Fieschi, a Genoese ; by Vellatello, the 
son of the ftbove-mentioned Ubaldini; and by Landino, 
Ftancioso, a Frenchman. 

* Croaier.} It is uncertain whether the word "rocco/* in 
the original, means a *' crosier" or a " bishop*s rochet," that 
is, his episcopal gown. In support of the latter interpreta- 
tion Lomiiaim cites Dti Fresne's Glossary, article Roccus. 
** Rochettum hodie vocant vestem linteam epi8'»)ponun . . . 
quasi parvnm roccmn ;" and explains the verse, 

Che pasturb col rocco molte genU : 

**who, from the revenues of his bishoprick, supported in 
.'nxury a large train of dependants." If the reader wishes to 
learn more on the snl^ect, he is referred to Monties Proposta, 
onder the woM ** Rocco." 

* Tke Marquis ] The Marchese de* RigogliosI, of Forli. 
When his bntler told him it was commonly reported in the 
eity that he did nothing bnt drink, he is said to have answered : 
" And do yon tel/ them that I am always thirsty.*' 

* Gnaueea.'} Of this lady it is thought that our Poet 
became enamored dnrlng his exile. See note to Canto 
xzxi. 56. 

* Tkan.] In the throat, the part in which they felt the 
uroeAt inmeted by the divine Justice. 

T H'SkoM Irow no tDtmple shades yet.^ " Who has not yvt 
naeoioed the dress of a woman.*' 


eso THE vision. A^si 

My city please thee, blame it as they inay.' 
Go then with this forewarning. If aught else* 
My whisper too implied, the event shidl tell. 
But say, if of a truth I see the man 
Of that new lay the inventor, which begins 
With * Ladies, ye that con the lore of k^e.' "^ 

To whom I thus : ** Count of me but as one. 
Who am the scribe of love ; that, when he breathesi 
Take up my pen, and, as he dictates, write." 

" Brother !" said he, " the hind'rance which once 
The notary,' with Guittone^ and myself, [held 

> Blamo it as then mavO See Hell, Canto xsX. 39. 

* Ladies, ye that con the lore of love.] 

Doxae ch* avete intelletto d*amore. 
The first verse of a canzone In onr aathor*8 Vita Nuova. 

* ne wftary.] Jacopo da Lentino, called the Notary, a 
poet of these times. He was probably an ApnUan : for Dante 
(De Vulg. Eloq., lib. Leap. 12,) quoting a verse which belongs 
to a canzone of his, published by the Giunti, without men- 
tioning the i;i*riter*s name, terms nim one of " the illustriooa 
Apulians,*' pnefulgentes ApnlL See "nraboschl. Bir. Ma- 
thias*s edit. vol. i. p. 137. Crescimbeni (lib. i. Delia Volg 
Foes., p. 72, 4to ed. 1608) gives an extract fiom one of his 
poems, printed in Allaccl's Collectl(»i, to show that the whim- 
sical compositions called ** Arlette," are not of modem in- 
vention. His poems have been collected among the Poeti 
del primo secolo della Lingua Italiana, 3 vol. 8vo. flrenze 
1816. They extend from p. 249 to p. 319 of the first volume. 

* ChutUnu.] Fra Gulttone, of Arezzo, holds a distin- 
guished place in Italian literature, as, besides his poems 
printed in the Collection of the Giunti, he has left a collec- 
tion of lette>s, forty in number, which afford the earliest 
specimen of (hat kind of writing in the language. They were 
published at Rome In 1743, with learned illustrations by 
Giovanni Dcttarl. He was also the first who gave to the 
sonnet its regular and legitimate form, a species of composi- 
tion in which not only his own countrymen, but many of the 
best poets in all the cultivated languages of modem £arop» 
have since so much delighted. 

Gulttone, a native of Arezzo, was the son of Viva dl Mi- 
ehele. He was of the older of the '* Frati Godenti," of which 
an account may be seen in the notes to Hell, Canto zidli. 
In the year 1293 he founded a monastery of the order of 
CaroaldoU, in Florence, and died in the following year 
Tiraboschl, ibid. p. 119. Dante, in the Treatise de Vnlg. 
Eloq., lib. i. cap. 13, ^'see note to v. 90, aoove,) and lib. tt. cap 
G, blames him for preferring the plebeian to the more eomtly 
Ktyle ; and Petmrcn twice places him in the eonpany of oat 
Poet Triumph of Love, cap. iv., and Bon. Par. Bee. **Seii- 
nuccio mio '* The eighth book in the collectioa of the old 
poets pnbltshed by the Glnnti in 1587, consists of sonnets aad 
ransoni Ly Gulttone. They are marked by a peculiar so* 
lemnity of manner, of which the ensuing sonnet wUl aflbnl c 
oroof fuA an example : 

sr-:tj. FUKGAIORY, Camto XXIV. 851 

Short of that new and sweeter style^ I heart 
Is now disclosed : I see how ye your plumes [tion, 
Stretch, as the mditer guides them ; which, no quea- 
Ours did not. He that seeks a grace heyond, 
Sees not the distance parts one style from other.** 
And, as contented, here he held his peace 

Like as the hirds,* that winter near the Nile, 
In squared regiment dhrect their coune, 
Then stretch themselves in file for speedier flight ; 
Thus all the tribe of spirits, as they tuni'd 
Their visage, faster fled, nimble alike 
Through leanness and desire. And as a man, 
Tired with the motion of a trotting steed,* 
Slacks pace, and stays behind his company. 

iSran inacer Signor mio, e gran desire 

Harei d'easere svanti al divin trono, 

Dots si pveaderi pace e perdono 

Di sao ben fiitto e d'agni rao fidiirc ; 
E gran placer harei hor dfsentire 

Qaella aonante tromba e quel gran snono, 

E d*adir dlra : hota vemiti lono, 

A chl dar pace, a chi cmdel auitiie. 
Qoesto tutto Torrei earo signore ; 

Perchd fia scritto a ciascliedan nel volto 

duel cM giii tenne ascoJM> dentro al core : 
Allhor vedrete a la mia ftonte avrolto 

Un brieve, che dlrA ; che U crado amore 

Per Toi me prese, e mai non m* ha diaciolto 

Great Joy it were to me to join the throng, 

That thy celestial throne, O Lord, surround, 
Where perfect peace and pardon bhall be fonnd, 
Peace for good doings, pardon for the wrong : 

Great Joy to hear the vault of heaven prolong 
That everlasting trumpet*s mighty soun^ 
That shall to each award their final bound. 
Wailing to these, to those the blissful song. 

All this, dear Lord, were welcome to my soul. 
For on his brow then every <Hie shall bear 
Inscribed, what late was hidden in the heart ; 

And round my forehead wreath*d a letter'd scroll 
Shall in this tenor my sad fitte declare : 
** Love*8 bondman I uom him might never part.*' 

Botfari doubts whether some of the sonnets attributed tu 
Quittone in the Rime Antiche are by that writer. See hif 
coles to Lettere di Fra Guittone, p. 135. 

> T%at futD and noeeUr sty^e.] He means the style intio 
duced in our Foet*s time. 

» TU Mrdr] Hell, Canto v. 46. Euripides, Helena, !€&, 
■ad Statins, Theb., lib. v. IS. 

■ Tired with the motion of a trotting steed.] I have IbUowe^ 
Ventnri's explanation of this passage. Others undentauil 

-— dl Irottaie i lasso^ 

oCUie fatigue produced by running. 

a52 THE VISION. 7>>i» 

Till hb o'erbreathed Iimg^ ke^ t^a^peraie time ; 
E'en 80 Forese let tfaiat holy crew • 
Proceed, behind them Ungbring at my sidei: 
And saying : " When shidl I again behold thee Y* 

*' How long my life may last," said I» " I know not 
This know, how soon soever I return, 
My wishes will before ma have arrived: . 
Sithence the place,* where I am set to live. 
Is, day by day, more scoop'd of all its good ; 
And usmal ruin seems to threaten it" 

« Go now," he cried : " lo ! he,' whose guilt is most 
PasKs before my vision^ dragg'd at heels 
Of an infuriate beast. Tofvard the vale. 
Where guilt hath no redemption, on it speeds. 
Each step increasing swiftness on the last ; 
Until a blow it strikes, that leaveth him 
A corse most vilely shattered. No long space 
Those wheels have yet to roll," (therewith his eyes 
Look'd up to heaven,) " ere thou shalt plainly see 
That which my words may not more plainly tell 
I quit thee : time is precious here : I lose 
Too much, thus measuring my pace with tnine ** 

As from a troop of well-rank*d. chivalry, 
iDne knight, more enterprising than the rest. 
Pricks forth at gallop, eager to display 
His process in the mst encounter proved ; 
So parted he from us, with lengthened strides ; 
And left me on the way with those twain spirits. 
Who were such mighty, marshals of the world 

When he beyond us had so fled, mine eyes 
No nearer reached him, than my thought his wordn ; 
The branches of another fruit, thick hung. 

» nu place.} Florence. 

a He.} Corso Donati was suspected of aiming at the aov 
ereignty of Fiorence. To escape the fury of his fellow-clll- 
zens, he fled awayoa horseback, but falling, waa overtaken 
and slain, A. D. 1306. The contemporary annalist, after rela- 
ting at length the circumstances or his fate, adda, ** that he 
was one of the wisest and most valorous knights, the best 
speakei, the most expert statesman, the most renowned and 
enterpriking man of hka age in Italy, a comely knight^ and of 
zraceful carriage, bnt very worldly, and m his time had 
formed many cons|rtracles in Florence, and entered into many 
scandalous practices for the sake of attuning state and lotir 
>hip.'* 6 villaiU lib. viii. cap. 06. The character of Cono 
Is forcibly drawn by another of his contemporaries. Dine 
Ctimpagni, lib. iii. Miuatori, Ber. Ital. Script., torn far. pu SSS 
Gnlttone d*Aieuo*s seventh Lstter U addressed to blm I* 

)(W-142. PURGATORY, Camto XXIV. 863 

And blooming fresh, appeared. E'en as our steps 
Tum'd thither ; not ftur off, it rose to view. 
Beneath it were a multitude, that raised 
Their hands, and shouted forth I know not what 
Unto the boughs ; like greedy and fond brats, 
That beg, and answer, none obtain from him, 
Of whom they beg ; but more to draw them on, 
He, at arm's length, the object of their wish 
Above them holds aloft, and hides it not. 

At length, as undeceived, they went their way 
And we approach the tree, whom vows and tears 
Sue to in vain ; the mighty tree. " Pass on. 
And come not near. Stands higher up the wood, 
Whereof Eve tasted : and from it was ta'en [came. 
This plant." Such sounds from midst the thickets 
Whence I, with either bard, close to the side 
That rose, pass'd forth beyond. ** Remember," next 
We heard, " those unblest creatures of the clouds,' 
How they their twyfold bosoms, overgorged, 
Opposed in fight to Theseus : call to mind 
The Hebrews,' how, efl^minate, they stoop'd 
To ease their thirst ; whence Gideon's ranks were 
As he to Madian' march'd adown the hills." [thinn'd. 

Thus near one border coasting, still we heard 
The sins of gluttony, with wo erewhile 
Reguerdon'd. Then along the lonely path. 
Once more at large, full thousand paces on 
We travell'd, each contemplative and mute. 

" Why pensive journey so ye three alone ?" 
Thus suddenly a voice exclaim'd : whereat 
I shook, as doth a scared and paltry beast ; 
Then raised my head, to look from whence it came 

Was ne'er, in furnace, glass, or metal, seen 
So bright and glowing red, as was the shape 
I now beheld. << If ye desire to mount," 
He cried ; << here must ye turn. This way he goeev 
Who goes in quest of peace." His countenance 
Had daxzled me ; and to my guides I faced 
Backward, like one who w^ks as sound directs. 

As when, to harbinger the dawn, springs up 

- CreatuTM of the clouds.] The Centaurs Ovid, Met^ Ih 
XU. fab. 4. 
. s 7%0 Hebrews.} Judges, vii. 

s TV Madian.} 

The matehless Gideon in parsuit 
Of Madian and ber vanquish^ kings. 

Milton^ Samson JfgomsUs. 

554 THE VISION. 143-131 

On frei^ea'd win? the air of May^ and breathes 
Of fragranoe, all unpregn*d with herb and flowen; 
E'en such a wmd I felt upon my front 
Blow gently, and the moying Of a wing 
Perceived, that, moving, shed ambrosi^ smell ; 
And then a voice : ** Blessed are they, whom grace 
Doth so illume, that appetite in them 
Exhaleth no inordinate desire, 
Stillhungering as the rule of temperance wills '* 



Virgil and Statins resolve sdme doabts that liave arisen ii! 
the mind of Dante iicom what fa9 had Jnst seen. They all 
arrive on the seventh and last comite, where the sin of In- 
continence is purged in fire ; and the spirits )f those sufifei"- 
ing therein are heard to record illustrions instances of 

It was an honr, when he who climbs, had necs] 
To walk uncrippled: for the sun^ had now 
To Taurus the meridian circle leflt, 
And to the Scorpion left the night. As one. 
That makes no pause, bat presses on his road, 
Whato'er betide him, if some urgent need 
Impel ; so enter'd we' upon our way, 
One before other ; for, but singly, none 
That steep and nanow scale admits to cUmK 

E'en as the yonng stork lifteth up^his wing 
Through wish to £y, yet venturot not to quit 
The nest, and drops it ; so in,ma desiie. 
Of questioniiig my guide arose, and fell, ■ 
Arriving even to the act that iparks 
A man prepared for speech. Him all our ha«te. 

1 The 8un.\ The sun had passed the meridian twa homa 
and that meridian was now occupied by the constellatlcm of 
Tanms, to which as the Scorpion is opposite, the latter eon 
ktellatlon was consequently at the meridian of night. 
* So entered toe,] 

Davantl a me andava la mia guida : 
E poi io dietro per una via stretta 
Seguendo lei come mia scorta fida. 

Dreztif U Quadrir^ lib. 11. eapi. S. 

The good prelate of Follgno has followed our Poet so ckwsly 
throughout this Capitolo, that It would be necessary to tnui- 
Bcribe almost the whole of It In order to show how much he 
has copied. These verses of his own may well be applied «t 
hiui on tlie occasion. 


iG-4S. PURGATORY, Ci»n) XXV. M5 

Restrained not ; but thus spake the sira beloyed : 
" Fear no^ to ^peed the sbskft,' thatoa thy lip 
Stands trembling for its Aight*" . Encouraged thus, 
I straight began : " How &ere can leanness come, 
Where is no want of nourishment lO feed?'* 

" If thou," he aoswer'd, " hadst remember'd thee^ 
How Meleager' with the wasting brand 
Wasted alike, by equal fires consumed ; 
This would not trouble thee : and hadst thou thought, 
How in the mirror^ your reflected form 
With mimic motion vibrates ; what now seems 
Hard, had appeared no harder than the pulp 
Of summer-fhiit mature. But that thy will 
In certainty may find its full repose, 
Lo Statins here ! on him I call, and pray 
That he would now be healer of thy wound.' 

** If, in thy presence, I unfold to him 
The secrets of heaven's vengeance, let me plead 
Thine own injunction to exculpate me." 
So Statins answer'd, and forthwith began : 
" Attend my words, O son, and in thy mind 
Receive them ; so shall they be hght to clear 
The doubt thou offer'st Blood, concocted well, 
Which by the thirsty veins is ne'er imbibed. 
And rests as feed superfluous, to be ta'en 
From the replenish'd table» in the heart 
Derives effectual virtue, that informs 

1 Fear not to speed the ekaft.] "'Fear not to titter the wordi 
:hat are already at the tip of thy tongiie.v 

n»XXd fiht ipruwiji 

TXSkroa fioi ro^d^/tar' Ixei wtpl kk(v(*v 

KsXaiflvai. Pindar j Isthni., v. 60. 

Full many a shaft of sonnding rhyme 
Stands trembling on my lip 
Their glory to declare. 

3 Mow there can leanneee eome.] " How ean spirits, that 
deed otot corporeal noarishment, be subject to let^nhessl'* 
This question gives rise to the following explanation of Sta- 
tins respecting the formation of the human body from the 
first, its junction With the sonl, and the passage of the lattei 
to another world. 

s Meleager.] Virgil reminds Dante that, as Bleleager was 
wasted away by the decree of the Fates, and. not through 
want of blood ; so by the divine appointment, there may be 
eanness where there is no need of nourishment. 

* In the mirror.'] As the reflection of a form in a mirror is 
modified in agreement with the modificatiott of the form it* 
self; so the soul, separated from the earthly cody, impresses 
:he linage or ghost of that body with its owp affections 

S56 THE VISION. 43-74 

The eerenl Iiuman limbs^ as being that 

Which passes throngh the veins itself to make them 

Yet more concocted it descends, where shame 

Forbids to mention : and from thence distills 

In natural vessel on another's blood. 

There each unite together ; one disposed 

I'o endure, to act the other, through that power 

Derived from whence it came ;' and being me(> 

It 'gins to work, coagrulating first ; 

Then vivifies what its own substance made 

Consist. With animation now indued. 

The active virtue (differing from a plant 

No further, than that this is on the way. 

And at its limit that) continues yet 

To operate, that now it moves, and feels, 

As sea-sponge^ clingring to the rock : and there 

Assumes the organic powers its seed convey*d. 

This is the moment, son ! at which the virtue. 

That from the generating heart proceeds, 

Is pliant and expansive ; for each limb 

Is in the heart by forgeful nature plaun'd. 

How babe' of animal becomes, remains 

For thy considering. At this point, more wise. 

Than thou, has err'd,* making the soul disjoined 

From passive intellect, because he saw 

No organ for the latter's use assign'd. 

" Open thy bosom to the truth that comes 
Know, soon as in the embryo, to the brain 
Articulation is complete, then turns 
The primal Mover with a smile of joy 
On such great work of nature ; and imbreathes 
New spirit replete witli virtue, that what here 

^ f)rom whence it came.} " From the heart,*' as Lombaidi 
rightly interprets it. 

3 .^« eea-apoitge.] The foetus is in this stage a zoophyte. 

8 Babe.] By '* fante," which is hero renAsred ** babe,** fa 
meant **the human creature.** *'The creature that is dls 
tinguished from others by its faculty of speech,** Just as 
Homer calls men, 

* More irt>«, 
Than tAou, ha* err'd.} Averroes Is said to be here meant 
Venturi refers to his commentary on Aristotle, De Anim., 
lib. ill. cap. 5, for the opinion that there is only one universal 
ntellect or mind pervading every individual of the human 
race. Much of the knowledge displayed by our Poet In the 
present Canto, appears to have been derived fifom the medi- 
-^al work of Averroes called the Colllget, lib. it f. 10. Veu 
1100, fol 

?SH|3. PCRGArair. Cum XXT. s&7 

Active a finw^ t0 its o«m ailalaaee dnii 
And fonm w nfindml ami, UmU Im^ 
And feds, and bcadi reflective on JtMiL 
And thai thiMi leav BMyA fluunral ai tbe waid* 
Maik the tma heat ;^ lii>w that to Vina dflith duuiffr 
Mix'd with the noirtnre filtei'd thnrngh the vise. 

" When Lachesb hath qm tfaa thread,* the 8Md 
Takes with her both the hmnan and diniie» 
Memory, inteUigesoe, and wiU* in ad 
Far keener than befeie ; the ether powem 
Inactive all and nnte. No paaw alkw'd. 
In wondimiB aoit aetf-movin^, to ene atiand 
Of those, where the departed ream, she falls: 
Here leans her destined path. Soon as the plaee 
Receives her, roond the plastic virtoe beams. 
Distinct as in the living limbs before: 
And as the air, whea satuate with dioweEs, 
The casual beam reliacting, decks itself 
With many a hoe ; so here the ambient air 
Weareth that form, which infiioence of the soul 
In^vints on it : and like the flame, that where 
The Gate moves, thither follows ; so, henceforth, 
The new fonn on the qpirit follows still : 
Hence hath it semblance, and is shadow caU*d, 
With each sense, even to the sight, endued : [sighs, 
Hence qieech is ouis, hence laughter, tears, and 
Which thoa mayst oft hare witnessed on the mount 
The obedient shadow fails net to present 
Whatever varying passion moves within us. 
And this the cause of what thou marvell'st at." 

Now the last flexure of our way we reach'd ; 
And to the right hand turning, other care 
Awaits us. Here the rocky precipice 
Hurls fcHTth redundant flames ; and from the rim 
A blast up-blown, with forciUe rebuff 
Driveth them back, seqnester'd from its bound. 

Behooved us, ene l^ <Mie, along the side. 
That border'd oo the void, to pass ; and I 
Feared on one hand the fire, on the other fear*d 

1 Mark the »mn'9keaL] RediandTlrab(nchi(Mr.UBthias*f 
uLf T. ii. p. 36) have coniddeied this as an anticipatUni o« a 
profoand discovery of €!aiileo*s in natual phikMophy ; Iwt it 
to in reality taken from a passage in Cicero ** de Senectnte,** 
where, speaking of the grape, he says, ''qiuevet sncco terns et 
calore s«is angescens, prime est pesacertia gostatOy deinde 
matoiata dnlcescit.'* 

< 1¥ken LaekeHt Math spun the thread] When a maoV 
Ife on earth is at an end 

858 THE VISION. 114-138 

Headlong to fall : when thus the instructor warn'd 
" Strict rein mnst in this place direct the eyeg. 
A little Bwernag and the way is loot" 

Then from the bosom of the burning^ mass, 
»» O God of mercy !"' heard I Bung> and felt 
No less desire to turn And when I saw 
Spirits along the flame proceeding, I 
Between their footsteps and mine own was fain 
To share by turns my view. At the hymn's dose 
They shouted loud, " I do not know a man ;"* 
Then in low voice again took np the strain ; 
Which once more ei^ed, " To the wood," they criod; 
** Ran Dian, and drave forth Callisto' stung 
With Cytherea's poison :" then retum'd 
Unto their song ; then many a pair extoU'd, 
Who lived in virtue chastely and the bands 
Of wedded .ove. Nor from that task, I ween, 
Surcease they ; whilesoe*er the scorching fire 
Enclasps them. Of such skill appliance needs. 
To medicine the wound thathealeth last* 




The spirits wonder at seeing the sliadow cast by the body oi 
Dante on the flame as he passes it This moves one oi 
them to address him. It proves to be Goldo GninioeHi, the 
Italian poet, who points out to him the spirit of AmanU 
Danieli the Provencal, with whom he also speaks. 

While singly thus along the rim we walk'd, 
Oil the good master warn'd me : " Look thou well 
Avail it that I caution thee." The sun 
Now all the western clime iiradiate changed 
From azure tinct to white ; and, as I pass'd. 
My passing shadow made the umbered flame 

1 " O Ood 9/ mer^.**] *' Summae Dens dementis.** 

The beginning of tne hymn sung on the Sabbath at matiaii 
na it stands in the ancient breviaries ; for in the modem It Is 
* snmmn parens clomentiie.*' Lombardi. 

> / d« net know a man.] Luke, L 34. 

s CWwto.] See Ovid, Met, lib. it. fab. 5. 

* T%e wmndj that kealeth last.] The marginal note la tbo 
Monte Cassino MS. on this passage is: **idest ultima Ulna 
que donotat ultimnm peccatnm mortale ;** and the editar 
remarks, thatOante in these last two verses admonishes hlai 
self, and iu himself all those gnilty of carnal sin, in Whatman* 
ner the woand, inflicted by 1^ ana expressed by the last P. ou 
his forehead, may be healed 


Bam raddier. At bo straoge a right I mBrk*d 
That many a spirit manrell'd on hW way. 

This bred occasion fiist to qwak of me. 
** He seems," said they, « no insubstantial frame :" 
Then, to obtain what certamty they might, 
Stretch'd towards me, careful not to overpass 
The burning pale. <' O thou ! who foUowest 
• The others, haply not more slow than they. 
But moved by reverence ; answer me, who bum 
In thirst and fire : nor I alone, but these 
All for thine answer do more thirst, than doth 
Indian or ^thiop for the cooling stream. 
Tell us, how is it that thou mak'st thyself 
A wall against the sun, as thou not yet 
Into the inextricable toils of death 
Hadst entered ?" Thus spake one ; and I had straight 
Declared me, if attention had not tum'd 
To new appearance. Meeting these, there camo, 
Midway the burning path, a crowd, on whom 
Earnestly gazing, from each part I view 
The shadows all press forward, severally 
Each snatch a hasty kiss, and then away. 
E'en 80 the emmets, 'mid their dusky troops, 
Peer closely one at other, to spy out 
Their mutual road perchance, and how they thrive 

That friendly greeting parted, ere dispatch 
Of the first onwud step, from either tribe 
Loud clamor rises : those, who newly come, 
Shout *' Sodom and Gomorrah !" these, " The com 
PasiphflB enter'd, that the beast she woo'd 
Might rush unto her luxury." Then as cranes, 
That part towards the Ripheean mountains fly, 
Part towards the Lybic sand3, these to avoid 
The ice, and those the sun ; so liasteth off 
One crowd, advances the other ; and resume 
Their first song, weeping, and their several shout* 

Again drew near my side the very same, 
Who had erowhile besought me ; and their looks 
, Marked eagerness to listen. I, who twice 
Their will had noted, spake : ** O spirits.! secuie, 
Whene'er the time may be, of peaceful end ; 
My limbs, nor crude, nor in mature old age, 
Have I left yonder : here they bear me, fed 
With blood, and smew-strung. That I no more 
May live m blindness, hence I tend aloft. 

^ *neir first tonfr, weeping, and their severed shout. \ 8m 
file last Canto, v. 118, and v. 123. 

860 • THB VjmOS. 5»-60 

There is a dome oil lu^iwho wiiu^for us 

This grace, by which my mortal through your realm 

I bear. But xAny your utmost wish soon meet 

Sudi full fruition^ that the orb of heaven, 

Fullest of love^ and of most am|de space, 

Receive you ; as ye tell (upon my page 

Henceforth to stand recorded) who ye are ; 

And what this midtitude, that at your backs 

Have passed behind u&" As one, mountain-bred. 

Rugged and clownish, if some city's walls 

He chance to enter, round him stares agape, 

Confounded and struck dumb ; e'en such appeared 

Each spirit. But when rid of that amaze, 

(Not long the inmate of a noble heart,^) 

He, who before had question'dj thus resumed : 

** O blessed ! who, for death preparing, takest 

Experience of our limits, in thy bark ; 

Their crime, who not with us proceed, was that 

For which, as he diid triumph, Caesaz^ heard . [cry 

The shout of ' queen,' to taunt him. Hence the& 

Of < Sodom,' as they parted ; to rebuke 

Themselves, and aid the burning by their shame 

Our sinning was Hermaphrodite : but we. 

Because the law of human kind we broke, 

Following like beasts our vile concupiscence, 

Hence parting from them, to our own disgrace 

Record the name of her, by whom the beast 

In bestial tire was acted. Now our deeds 

Thou know'st, and how we sinn'd. If thou by namr 


{J^ot long the inmate of a noble heart.)] 


Lo qual negli alti eor tosto s'attuta 
Thus Speroni : 

Id stapore 

Lo qnal dagli alti cor toeto id parte, 
[le does not say that wonder is not natonU t) a Idty uiad, 
for it is the very prindpie of knowledge. ^idiKa yip ^<Xo- 
cd^on toZto rb ndBoSt rb 0avf«£^eiv, oh ydp iXXif ipxi 
6iMiro^as Jj air^. Plato, Theat. Edit Bipont., torn. li. p. 76 , 
but that it is not of long continuance in such a mind. Ob 
this subject it is well said by Doctor Honley: ^Wooder, 
connected with a principle of rational curiositv, is the source 
of all knowledge and discovery, and it is a principle even of 
piety: but wonder, which enos in wonder, and is satbOed 
with wonder, is the quality of an idiot'* Sm-wuns^ toI. L p 
237. Compare Aristotle, Metaph., lib. 1. p. 335, Bdit. Sylo. 
The above passage from Plato is adduced by Clemens Alex 
and., Strom., lib. ii. sect. 9. 

1 Caear.] For the opprobrium cast on Cesar*s etfenlaacv 
\iee Suetonius, Julius Cssar, c. 49 

81 111 PURGATORY, Canto XXVI. 861 

Wouldst haply know us, time pennits not now 

To tell so much, nor can I. Of myself 

Learn what thoa wishest. Guinicelli* I ) 

Who havmg truly sorrow'd ere my last, 

Already cleanse me." With such pious joy. 

As the two sons upon their mother gazed 

From sad Lycurgus' rescued ; such my joy 

(Save that I more repress'd it) when I heard 

From his own lips the name of him pronounced, 

Who was a father to me, and to those 

My betters, who have ever used the sweet 

And pleasant rhymes of love. So naught I heard. 

Nor spake ; but long time thoughtfully I went. 

Gazing on him ; and, only for the iire. 

Approached not nearer. When my eyes were fed 

By looking on him ; with such solemn pledge, 

As forces credence, I devoted me 

Unto his service wholly. In reply 

He thus bespake me : " What from thee I hear 

Is graved so deeply on my mind, the waves 

Of Lethe shall not wash it off, nor make 

A whit less lively. But as now thy oath 

Has seal'd tiie truth, declare what cause impels 

That love, which both thy looks and speech bewray.** 

** Those dulcet lays," I answered ; ** which, as long 
As of our tongue the beauty does not fade, 
Shall make us love the very ink that traced them." 

" Brother !" he cried, and pointed at the shade 
Before him, ** there is one, whose mother speech 
Doth owe to him a fairer ornament. 
He' in love ditties, and the tales of prose, 

^ Guinicelli.) See Note to Canto xl. 96. 
' Lyeurgut.j Statius, Theb., lib. iv. and v. HypsipUe had 
left her infant charge, the son of Lycorgus, on a bank, where 
t was destroyed by a senient, when she went to show the 
.\ivive army the river of Langia : and, on her escaping the 
efncts of Lycurgns*8 resentment, the joy her own children 
felt at the sight of her was such, as our Poet felt on behold* 
tnghis predecessor Guinicelli. 

The incidents are beautifully described in Statius, and seem 
to have made an impression on Dante, for he l)efore (Canto 
ixii. 110) characterizes Hypsipile as her— 
Who show'd Langia*8 wave. 
> He.] The united testimony of Dante, and of Petrarch, 
Maces Arnault Daniel at the head of the Provencal poets. 
— — poi v*era un drappello 
TA portamentl e dl volgari strani : ' 
Fra tutti U primo Amsiido Danielio 
Gran maestro d*amor ch* a la sua terra 
Auoor fa on(X col suodir nuovo e beliu. 

Petrareoj Trionfo i^AtMrt^ e. Iv • 

363 THE VISION. 118 

Without a rival stands ; and lets the fools 

That he wu born of poor bat noble parentB, at tbe eaade of 
Ribeyrac in P^riRord, and that he was at the English eourt, \m 
the amount of Millot's information concerning him, (torn, ii 
p. 479.) The account there given of his writings is not much 
more satisfactory, and the criticism on them must go for little 
better than nothing. It is to tie regretted that we have not an 
opportunity of judging for ourselves of his ** love ditties anil 
his tales of prose.*' 

Vers! d*amore e prose di romanzl 

Our Poet frequently cites him in the work De Vulgan £lo> 
quio. In the second chapter of the second booic, he Is in- 
stanced as one " who had treated of love ;*' and in the tenth 
chapter, he is said to have used in almost all his eanzoni a 
particular kind of stanza, the sestine, which Dante had fol- 
lowed in one of his own eanzoni, beginning, 

AI poco giomo ed al gran cerchio d*ombra. 

This stanza is termed by Gray, "both in sense and sound, a 
very mean composition." Oray*M Workt^ Ato>, Loud. 1814, 
vol. ii. p. 23. According to Cresclmbeni, (Delia Volg. Foes., 
lib. i. p. 7, ed. 1698,) he died in 1189. Arnault Daniel was not 
soon foreotten; for Ausias March, a Catalonian, who was 
himiwlf distinguished as a Provencal poet in the middle of the 
fifteenth century, makes honorable mention of him in some 
verses, which are quoted by Bastero in his Crusca Proven 
zale, Ediz. Roma. 17^, p. 75. 

Envers alguns a^o miracle par ; 
Mas sin's membram d'en Amau Daniel 
E de aquels que la terra los es vel, 
Sabrem Amor vers nos que pot donar. 

To some this seems a miracle to be ; 

But if we Arnault Daniel call to mind. 

And those beside, whom earthly veil doth bind, 

We then the mighty power of love shall see. 

Bince this note was written, M. Raynoitard has nuide u^ 
better acquainted with the writings and history of the Pro- 
vencal poets. I have much pleasure in citing the following 
particulars respecting Arnault Daniel firora his Cholx des Po 
isles des Troubadours, tom. Ii. pp. 318, 319. 

" L*aatorit6 de Dante suffirait pour nousconvaincre qu* Ar 
nand Daniel avait compost plusieurs romans. Mais U nste 
nne preuve positive de TexUtence d*un roman d*Aniaiid 
Daniel ; c'est celui de Lancelot du Lac, dont la traduction ftit 
falte, vers la fin du trelzl^me sl^cle, en allemand, par Ulilcb 
de Zatchitschoven, qui nomme Amaud Daniel comme l*autnitf 

" Le Ta^^, dans Pun de ses ouvrages,' 8*exprime en eu 
'uermes, au si^t des romans composes par les troubadours : 

" E romanzl fVirono dettl quel poemi, o piu tosto quello 

t'*) Des eztraits de cette traduction alleroande out ^te 

(*) Discorso sopro 11 parere fttttodol Slgnor Tt. Patricio, etc. 
•Alt fol. tom. iv. p. 9)0. 

113 PURGATORY, CAirro X&Vl. 863 

Talk on, who think the songster of Limoges' 

mttaic &volose, che fturono seritte nella lingua de* ProvensaL 
o de* Castiglianl ; le qaaik non si acrivevano In veni, ma id 
prosa, come alcani hanno osserrato prima da me, perch^ 
Dante, parlando d'Araaldo Daniello, disse : 

Versi d'amore e prose di romanzi, etc. 

Enfin Pnlci, dans son Morgante Maggiore. nomme Amaiut 
Daniel comme auteur d*iin roman de Renaud ; 

Dopo costtd Tenne il fiunoso Amaldo 
Che molto diUgentemente ha sciitto, 
E investigb le opre di Rinaldo, 
De le gran cose che fece in £gitto, etc." 

MorffatUe Maggiore, Canto xzvii. ott. 80 

See also Raynouard, torn. v. 30. 

1 The tumgster of Limoges.] Giraud de Bomeil, of Sidenil 
a castle in Limoges. He was a Troubadour, much admired 
and caressed in his day, and appears to have been in favor 
with the monarchs of Castile, Leon, Navarre, and Aragon. 
Giraud is mentioned by Dante in a remarkable passage of the 
De Vnig. Eloq., lib. 11. cap. 52. '* As man Is endowed with a 
triple soul, vegetable, animal, and rational, so he walks in a 
triple path, hiasmuch as he is vegetable, he seeks utility, 
in which he has a common nature with plants ; inasmuch as 
he iS animal, he seeks for pleasure, in which he participates 
with brutes ; inasmuch as he is rational, he seeks for honor, 
in which he is either alone, or is associated with the angels. 
Whatever we do, appears to be done through these three 
principles," &c. — " With respect to utility, we shall find on a 
minute inquiry that the primary object with all who seek it, 
is safety ; with regaid to pleasure, love is entitled to the first 
place ; and as to honor, no one will hesitate in assUnins the 
same pre-eminence to virtue. These three then, safety, love, 
virtue, appear to be three great subjects, which ought to 
be treated with most grandeur; that is, those things which 
chiefly pertain to these, as courage in arms, ardency of love, 
and tne direction of the will : concerning which alone we 
shall find on Inqidry that illustrious men have composed 
their poems in the vernacular tongues : Bertrand de Bom, of 
arms ; Arnault Daniel, of love ; Giraud de Bomeil, of recti- 
tude; Cino da Pistoia, of love; his friend," (by whom he 
means himself,) ^* of rectitude ; but I .find no Italian as yet 
who has treated of arms." Giraud is again quoted in the 
sixth chapter of this book. The following notice respecting 
him is found in 6ray*s posthumous Works, 4to. Loud. 1814 
vol. ii. p. S8. '* The canzone is of very ancient date, the in- 
vention of it being ascribed to Glrard de Bomeil of the school 
of Provence, who died in 1178. He was of Limcges, and was 
called Ji Maeetro tU? TVovatori." That he was distinguished 
bT this title (a circumstance that, perhaps, induced Dante to 
vmdlcate the superior claims of Arnault Daniel) Is mentioned 
by Bastero in hlsCrusca Provenzale, Edlz. Roma, p. 84, where 
we find the followinff list of his MS. poems preserved in the 
Vatican, and in l;he library of S. Lorenzo at Florence. '* Una 
lenzone col Re d* Aragona ; e un Serventese contra Cardaillac, 
9 diverse Canzonl massimamente tre pel ricuperamento del 
B. Sepolcro, o dl Terra Santa, ed alcune col tltolo di Cnnte- 
fete, do^ picciole cantari, ovvero canzonette." The ligL< 
^Ueh these and similar writings might cast, not only on tbr 

864 THE VISION 114-182 

O'ertops him. Rumor and the popular voice 

They look to, more than truth ; and so confirm 

Opinion, ere by art or reason taught. 

Thus many of the elder time cried up 

Guittone,^ giving him the prize, till truth 

By strength of numbers vanquish'd. If thou own 

So ample privilege, as to have gain'd 

Free entrance to the cloister, whereof Christ 

Is Abbot of the college ; say to him 

One paternoster for me, far as needs' 

For dwellers in this world, where power to sin 

No longer tempts us.*' Haply to make way 

For one that foUow'd next, when that was said, 

He vanished through the fire, as through the wavo 

A fish, that glances diving to the deep. 

I, to the spirit be had shown me, drew 
A little onward, and besought his name, 
For which my heart, I said, kept gracious room 
He frankly thus began : " Thy courtesy* 

events, but still more on the manners of a roost iBteiestiiM 
period of history, woold surely, without taking into the ae^ 
count any merit they may possess as poetical eoBipositi«nk 
render them objects well deserving of more cariosity tluiB 
they appear to have hitherto excited in the public mind. 
Many of his poems are still remaining in MS. AceonHng to 
Nostiadamns he died In 1S7& Millot, Hist. Litt. des TronU, 
tom. il. p. 1, and 23. But I suspect that there is some enoi 
In this date, and that he did not live to so late a period. 
Borne of his poems have since kieen published by Baynooaid 
Poesies des Troubadours, torn. iii. p. 304, Ax. 

> Onittone.] See Canto xxiv. 50l 
s Fhr a$ ne«b.] Sec Canto xi. 33. 

* Thy ceurte9^.'\ Arnault is here made to speak in bis owb 
tongue, the Provencal. According to Dante, (De Vnlg. Eloq., 
Ub. i. c. 8,) the Trovengal was one language with the Span 
ish. What he says on this subject is so curious, that the 
reader will perhaps not be displeased if I give an abstract 
of it. 

He first makes three great divisltms of the Eni^ppean Ian 
guages. *'One of these extends from the mouths of the 
Danube, or the lake of Meotis, to the western limits of Eng- 
land, and is bounded by the limits of the Frcmch aii4 Italians, 
and by the ocean. One idiom obtained over the wh<4o of 
this space: but was afterwards subdivided into the Sdavu- 
nian, Hungarian, Teutonic, Saxon, English, and the vernacu- 
lar tongues of several other people, one sign remalniaff to 
nil, that they use the affirmative 10, (our English «y.) The 
whole of Europe, beginning fhom the Hungvian limits aid 
stretching towards the east, has a second idiom, which 
reaches still fhrther than the end of Europe, Into Asia. Thir 
is the Greek. In all that remains of Europe, there Is a third 
Idiom* subdivided into three dialects, which may be severally 
dlsUngnished by the use of the affirmatives, m. »•/, and et 

JSslM. PURGATORY, Canto XXVI. 665 

So wins on me, I have nor power nor will 
To hide me. J am Amaalt ; and with songs, 

the first spoken by the Spaniards, the next by the French, 
the third by the Latins, (or Italians.) The first occupy the 
wealem part of soathern Europe, bcq^inning from the limits 
of the Geneose. The third occupy the eastern part from the 
said limits, as far, that is, as to the promontory of Italy, 
where the Adriatic sea begins, and to Sicily. The secontl 
are in a manner northern, with respect to these, for they 
have the Germans to the east and north, on the west fhey 
are rounded by the English sea and the mountains of Aia- 
gon, and on the south by the people of Provence and the 
declivity of the Apennine.'* 

Ibid. c. z. *' Each of these three," he observes, " has its 
own claims to distinction. The excellency of the French 
language consists in its being best adapted, on account of its 
facility and agreeableness, to prose narration, (quicquid re* 
dactum, sive inventum est ad vulsare prosaicum, suum est ;} 
and he instances the books compued on the gests of the Tro- 
jans and Romans, and the delightful Adventures of King 
Arthur, with many other histories and works of instruction. 
The Spanish (or Provencal) may boast of its having pro- 
duced such as first cultivated in this, as in a more perfect 
and sweet language, the vernacular poetry: among whom 
are Pierre d'Auvergne, and others more ancient The privi- 
leges of the Latin, or Italian, are two ; first, that it may 
reckon fsx its own those writers who have adopted a more 
sweet and subtile style of poetry, in the number of whom are 
Citto da Pistoia and his friend ; and the next, that its writers 
seem to adhere to certain general rules of grammar, and in 
so doing give it, in the opinion of the intelligent, a very 
weighty pretension to preference." Since the last edition of 
this book, it has appeared that Mr. Gray understood by the 
words " Granmiaticie, que communis est;" "the Latin oi 
moUier-tongue," and not, as I have rendered them, " general 
rules of grammar." In this latter sense, however, the word 
" Grammatica" has been used twice before in the Treatise de 
Valg. Eloq., though it is certainly afterwards applied In the 
sense in which Gray took it. See the edition of Gray*s 
Woiks, for which we are so much indebted to Mr. Mathias, 
4to. Lfmdon, 1814, vol. ii. p. 35. We learn from our author's 
Vita Nnova, p. 358, that there were no poetic compositions 
in the Provencal or Italian, more than one hundred and fifty 
years before tne Vita Nuova was written ; and that the first 
who wtote in the vernacular languages, wrote to make him 
self nnJerstood by a lady. M. l&ynouard supposed the tez> 
of all the editions to be miserably corrupted in this place, and 
took nrach pains to restore it. I will add the passage as tha' 
earned writer concluded it to have come from the hand of 
Oante :— 

" Tan m'abellis vostre cortes deman. 
Ch' leu non me puese ni m voU a vos cobrire; 
Jen sui Amautz, che plor e val cantan ; 
Cnnsiros, vei la passada follor, 
IS vei jauzen lo joi qu*esper denan ; 
Aras vos prec, per aquella valor 
fltue as guida al som sens freich e sens criima* 
Bovegna vos ateDprar ma dolor. 

366 THE VISION 135-141 

Sorely waymentmg for my folly past, 
Thorough thifl ford of fire I wade, and seo 
The day, I hope for, smilmg m my view. 
I pray ye by the worth that guides ye up , 

Unto the summit of the scale, in time 
Remember ye my sufl^rings.*' With such wonU 
He disappeared in the refining flame. 



An aitgel sends them forward through the fire to the last 
ascent, which leads to the terrestrial Fciradise, situated on 
the snmmit of the moan tain. They have not proceeded 
many steps on their way npward, When the foil of night 
hinders them from going farther; and onrPoet, who has 
lain down with Viigil and Statins to rest, beholds in a 
dream two females, ngnring the active and eontemplativft 
life. With the retam of morning, they reach the height; 
and here Virgil gives Dante fhll liberty to use his own 
pleasure and judgment in the choice of his way, till he 
shall meet with Beatrice. 

Now was the sun* so station'd, as when first 
His early radianqe quiyera on the heights, 
Where streamed his Maker's blood ; wQle I<ibra hangs 
Above Hesperian Gbro ; and new fires. 
Meridian, flash on Ganges' yellow tide. 

" Tant me plait votre courtoise demande,— qne je ne puis 
Di ne me veux a voas cacher;— je suis Amaud, qui pievni 
at va chantant ;— soucieux, Je vois la pass^e folie,— et vols 
ioyeux le bonheur, que j'esp^re 4 Pavenir ; — maintenant je 
vous prie, par cette vertu — qui vous guide an soumet, sana 
t'roid et sans chaud ; — qu'il sou vienne a vous de soulager ma 

** 11 n'est pas un des nombreux manusciits de la Divina 
Uommedia, pas une des Editions mulUpli^es qui en ont 4i6 
donn6es, qui ne prAsente dans les vers que Dante prAte au 
troubadour Arnaud Daniel, un texte d^figurA et deveno, de 
ropie en copie, presque inintelligible. 

" Cependant J*ai pens^ qu'il n'^tait pas impossible de r6i&- 
blir le texte de ces vers, en comparant avec soin, dans Ivi 
manuscrits de Dante que possddent les d^pAts publics dc 
Paris, toutes les variantes quails pouvalent foumlr, et en las 
ehoisissant d'apr^s les regies grammaticales et les notions 
lexicographiques de la langne des trodbadours. Mon espoir 
u'a point 6t6 tromp6, et sans aucnn secours conjectural, sans 
ancun d^placement nl changement de mots, je suis parvena, 
par le simple choix des variantes, 4 retrouver le texte primitif 
:cl qn'il a d(i fttre produit par Dante.** 

Raynouard. Lexiqut Eotnan tarn. i. p. xlii. 8>., Par. 183Ql 

^ The sun.] At Jerusalem it was dawn, in Spain midnlgh*, 
mil in India noonday, while it was nunset in Purgatnrv 

6-37. PURGATORY, Canto XXVIl. 867 

So day was sinking, when the angel of Gcd 
Appeared before us. Joy was in his mien. 
Forth of the flame he stood upon the brink ; 
And with a voice, whose lively clearness far 
Surpassed our human, " Blessed' are the pure 
In heart," he sang: then near him as we came, 
** Go ye not further, holy spirits !'' he cried, 
" Ere the fire pierce you : enter in ; and list 
Attentive to the song ye hear from thence." 

I, when I heard lus saying, was as one 
Laid in the grave.' My hands together clasp'd, 
And upward stretching, on the fire I look'd 
And busy fancy conjured up the forms 
Erewhile beheld alive consumed in flames. 

The escorting spirits turn'd with gentle looks 
Toward me ; and the Mantuan spidce : " My son. 
Here torment thou mayst feel, but canst not deatli 
Remember thee, remember thee, if I 
Safe e'en on Geryou brought thee ; now I come 
More near to Grod, wilt thou not trust me now ? 
Of this be sure ; though in its womb that flame 
A thousand years containM thee, from thy head 
No hair should perish. If thou doubt my truth, 
Approach ; and with thy hands thy vesture's hem 
Stretch forth, and for thyself confirm belief. 
Lay now all fear, oh ! lay all fear aside. 
Turn hither, and come onward undismay'd." 

I still, though conscience urged, no step advanced 

When still he saw me fix'd and obstinate. 
Somewhat disturb'd he cried : " Mark now, my son^ 
From Beatrice thou art by this wall 
Divided." As at Thisbe's name the eye 

1 Blessed.] Matt, v 8. 

• ' As one 

Laid in tke grave.] 

Quale d coloi che nelia fossa d messo. 

Lombardl understands this of a man who is taken to ezecu 
tlon in the manner described in Hell, c. zix. S3. ** Colni,* 
be thinks, cannot be properly applied to a corse. Tet Boo 
cacGio*s imitation confirms the opinion of the other com 
sientators :— 

' Essa era tale, a guardarla nel viso, 
Q,ual donna morta alia fossa portata. 

// EUostratOf p. v. st. 63 

Krhich Chaucer has thus translated : — 

She was right soche to sene in her visaxe, 
\s is that wight that men on bere ybinae. 

Troilus and Creseide^ b IT 

868 THE VISION. 39^i 

Of Fyramns was opened, (wnen life ebb'd 
Fast from his veins) and took one parting glance» 
While venneil dyed the mulbeiry ;^ thus I turn'd 
To my sage guidei identing, when I heard 
The name that springs for ever in my breast 

He shook his forelread ; and, ** How long," ho said, 
" Linger we now?" then smiled, as one would«< 
Upon a child that eyes the fruit and yields. 
Into the fire before me then he walk'd ; 
And Statius, who erewhile no little space 
Had parted us, he pray'd to come behind. 

I would have cast me into molten glass 
To cool me, when I entered ; so intense 
Raged the conflagrant mass. The sire beloved. 
To comfort me, as he proceeded, still 
Of Beatrice talked. " Her eyes," saith he, 
" E'en now I seem to view." From the other side 
A voice, that sang, did guide us ; and the voice 
Following, with heedful ear, we issued forth, [heard. 
There where the path led upward. " Come,"' wc 
" Coipe, blessed of my Father." Such the sounds. 
That hail'd us from within a light, which shone 
So radiant, I could not endure the view. 
" The sun," it added, '< hastes : and evening come& 
Delay not : ere the western sky is hung 
With blackness, strive ye for the pass." Our way 
Upright within the rock arose, and faced 
Such part of heaven, that from before my steps 
The beams were shrouded of the sinking sun. 

Nor many stairs were overpast, when now 
By fading of the shadow we perceived 
The sun behind us couch'd ; and ere one face 
Of darkness o'er its measureless expanse , 
Involved the horizon, and the night her lot 
Held individual, each of us had made 
A stair his pallet ; not that will, but power. 
Had fail'd us, by the nature of that mount 
Forbidden further travel As the goats, 
That late have skipp'd and wanton'd rapidly 
Upon the craggy cliflb, ere they had ta'en 
Their supper on the herb, now silent lie 
And ruminate beneath the umbrage brown, - 
While noonday rages ; and the goatherd leans 
Upon his staff, and leamng watches them : 

1 While vermea dyed the mutberry,] Ovkl MetMilf III 
V. 1S5. 
• Craie.) Matt, xxv 34. 

5»-117. PURGATORY, Canto XXVII 809 

And as the swain, that lodgres out all night 
In quiet by his flock, lest beast of prey 
Disperse them : even so all three abode, 
I as a goat, and as the shepherds they, 
Close pent on either side by shelving rock. 

A little glimpse of sky was seen aboya ; 
Yet by that little I beheld the stars. 
In magnitude and lustre shining forth 
With more than wonted glory. As I lay, 
Gazing on them, and in Uiat fit of musing, 
Sleep oyercame me, sleep, that bringeth o^ 
Tidings of future hap. About the hour, 
As I belieye, when Venus from the east 
First lighten'd on the mountain, she whose orb 
Seems alway glowing with the fire of loye, 
A lady young and beautiful, I dream'd, 
Was passing o'er a lea ; and, as she came, 
Methought I saw her eyer and anon 
Bending to cull the flowers ; and thus she sang 
" Know ye, whoeyer of my name would ask. 
That I am Leah :^ for my brow to weaye 
A garland, these fair hands unwearied ply. 
To please me' at the crystal mirror, here 
[ deck me. But my sister Rachel, she' 
Before her glass abides the liyelong day, 
Her radiant eyes beholding, charm'd no less, 
Thau I with this delightful task. Her joy 
In contemplation, as in labor mine." 

And now as glimmering dawn appeared, that breaka 
More welcome to the pilgrim still, as he 
Sojourns less distant on his homeward wa}*, 
Darkness from all sides fled, and with it fled 
My slumber ; whence I rose, and saw my guide 
Already risen. ** That delicious fruit. 
Which through so many a branch the zealous care 
Of mortals roams in quest of, shall this day 

^ I am Leah.] By Leah is understood the active life, as 
Rachei flgores the contemplative. Michel Angelo has nuide 
these allegorica,l personages the subject of two statnes on the 
montunent of Julius IL in the church of S. Pietru in Ylncolo. 
See BCr. Dappa^s life of Michel Angelo, Sculpture viii.andx., 
and p. 247. 

> TV pUate me.] "For the sake of that enjoyment which 
I shall nave in beholding my God face to face, I thus exercise 
myself in good worics.** 

s She] ** Her delight is in admiring in her mirror, that Ist 
in the snprenie Being, the light, or Icnowledge, that He vonchr 
■afes her.** 

370 THE VISION. 118-14S 

Appease thy Irnnger.'' Such the words I beard 

From Virgil's lip ; and never greeting heard, 

So pleasant as the soimds. Within me straight 

Desire so. grew upon desire to mount, 

Thenceforward at each step I felt the wings 

Increasing for my flight When we had rou 

O'er all the ladder to ita topmost round, 

As there we stood, on me the Mantuan fix'd 

His eyes, and thus he spake : " Both fires, my K3ik, 

The temporal and eternal, thou hast seen v 

And art arrived, wheve of itself my ken 

No further reaches, ^i, with skill and art, 

Thus far have drawn thee. Now thy pleasure take 

For guide. Thou hast o'ercome the steeper way. 

Overcome' the straiter. Lo ! the sun, that darts 

His beam upon thy forehead : lo ! the herb,' 

The arborets and flowers, which of itself 

This land pours forth prof use. Till those bright eye^ 

With gladness come, which, weepmg, made me hastfi 

To succor thee, thou mayst or seat thee down. 

Or wander where thou wilt Expect no more 

Sanction of warning voice or sign from me, 

Free of thy own arbitrement to choose, 

Discreet, judicious. To distrust thy sense 

Were henceforth error. I invest thee then 

With crown and mitr&, sovereign o'er thyself" 



Haute wanders through, the forest of the terrestrial Paradise, 
till he is stopped by a stream, on the other side of which 
he beholds a fair lady, culling flowers. He speaks to her ; 
and she, in reply, explains to him certain things toaching 
the nature of that place, and tells that the water, whi^ 
flows between them, is here called Lethe, and in another 
place has the name of Ennoe. 

^ Lf0l the kerb.} " In filinm campom transit amanisslmom' 
Ipse veto campus splendidns, snavis ae deeoms quanta maa^ 
nitndinis, qoanta glorle,'qaantcqae sit polchiitadlnis, nuln 
lingna, nuliasqne sermo, potest enarrare: plenns est enim 
omnl Jneimdltate, et gaudio, et lastitia. Ibl iiUunun, at rosa 
nun odor, ibi odoramentonun omninm redolet fiagnntia, 
i M mannc, omninmqne etemamm deliclaram rednndat vban 
lantia. In hn^us camiid medio paradisus est.** .nikeriu 

* Tkoae Mgkt qfet.] The eyes of Beatrice 

TnxMisai iSbat ocilcfltial fonsflt) "vriMBe liiick idirffl 
With IxTcily gitMuuMBB tfafc npwHQumg'iug' diy 
AHiBinper'd, MiigHr mnir te nnon, sud sbucSi 
delinutB ivnid, fcrtlivil^ I left tfaeliBBk^ 
Alm^lSv nhwiipMii leBin^Bty niy war 
Puwuii^g, •*fsr llie gnnmd, that ooi all sdes 
DcdKaBOi •dv IjRssthed. A jikiawant ^ir,* 
T^knct Jiilijijuitted ncFes*, Bcrer TDcr^d, 
SiMte fli XBT temples, geutly, ja a insn 
CxfaidbBit mftneaiBe: iit irinch the t^BxySj 
Oi widift an, Icssf d trffmhlmg to ^tatt pax^ 
vFfaeR fint the liaSy BMmntam casts his ifaHB^ 
Tet WR Mt m diMirdBr'd, bnt tiutt stffl 
Utmib Isen* top liie iealiieT*d ^fimistais 
A^yppd tikear woolied ait, and witli ifBHSijoy 
Weloanicd liMse boms flf pnme, and waiUed chHU 
jiadd Hie kaTcs, Uui to Hwar joenBd lajs 
KeptfoMr; eroi as fitni brandi to brwEidi, 
AloB^ tixe pnty fioreste on the shore 
Of CSiiaBB,* luBs Ihe falhemig xndodj, 
Whea Soihif hath fram hk eaTcm loosed 
Tne dnpymg soulh. Already had my stapsy 
llioii^ ailoir, so fax mto that asoent wood 
T riw| i r s !t ed me, I oould boI kca the place 

, e vaifi. e nssi, e palU ; 
IK SsBfiteEEa TincoBO i cnstallL 
Uaa doK* aata, cfae 1i yu- c3w Ta^ 

jKtfea. ■^■r calor del : 

JfMwfa, (M. Fkr^ c zxzir. 

•TliiMK^avl.] The 

a flc/iiartw dfmriatarmj foilfitpJ by 


«CftMM£.l Thiiis thewooivkovdie MaeMcT 
rfai** iWmnt story (tyBea catirely fkosi Wiinad, «■ 1 1 
a die aotet to Ifae DeoBeraa, Ediz. Giaali, ISTl^ W-^ ^ 
aid. See Dec., G.2^N. a, aadDrydai*s Theodore ! 
tia. Ow Poet perinpfwaaderediattdaiiae hit; 
'Sride SorBMio da 

872 THE VISION. «« 

Where I had enter'd ; when, behold ! my path 
Was bounded by a rill, which, to the left, 
With little rippling waters bent the grass 
That issued from its brink. On earth no wave 
How clean soe'er, that would not seem to have 
Some mixture in itself, compared with this. 
Transpicuous clear ; yet darkly on it rollM, 
Darkly beneath perpetual gloom, which ne'er 
Admits or sun or moonlight there to shine. 

My feet advanced not ; but my wondering eyes 
Passed onward, o'er the streamlet, to survey 
The tender May-bloom, flush'd through many a hu» 
In prodigal variety : and there, 
As object, rising suddenly to view, 
That from our bosom every thought beside 
With the rare marvel chases, I beheld 
A lady' all alone, who, singing, went. 
And culling flower from flower, wherewith her wav 
Was all o'er painted. " Lady beautiful ! 
Thou, who (if looks, that use to speak the heart, 
Are worthy of our trust) with love's own beam 
Dost warm thee," thus to her my speech I framed ; 
** Ah ! please thee hither towards the streamlet bend 
Thy steps so near, that I may list thy song. 
Beholding thee and this fair place, methinks, 
I call to mind where wander'd and how look'd 
Proserpine, in that season, when her child 
The mother lost, and she the bloomy spring." 

As when a lady, turning in the dance, 
Doth foot it featly, and advances scarce 
One step before the other to the ground ; 
Over the yellow and vermilion flowers 
Thus turn'd she at my suit, most maiden-like. 
Veiling her sober eyes ; and came so near. 
That I distinctly caught the dulcet sound. 
Arriving where the limpid waters now 

> j9 lady.] Most of the comraentators BVppoae, that hy 
this lady, who ia the last Canto is called Matilda, ts to be 
nnderstood the Countess Matilda, who endowed the holy ne 
with the estates called the Patrimony of St. Peter, and died 
in 1115. Bee 6. ViUani, lib. iv. cap. xx. Bat it teems moio 
probable that she should be intended for an allegorical per- 
sonage Yenturl accoriingly supposes that she reproients 
the active life. But, as Lombardi justly observes, we have 
had that already shadowed forth in the character cf Leah: 
and he therefore suggests, that by Matilda may be undentood 
that alTection which we ought to bear towards tin holy 
:hurch, and for which the lady above mentioned was so rr 

51-lwi. PURGATORY, Canto XXVIII. 373 

Laved the green swerd, her eyes she deign'd to raise. 
That shot such splendor on me, as I ween 
Ne'er glanced from Cytherea's, when her son 
Had sped his keenest weapons to her heart. 
Upon the opposite bank she stood and smiled : 
As through her graceful fingers shifted still 
The intermingling dyes, wluch without seed 
That lofty land unbosoms. By the stream 
Three paces only were we sunder'd : yet, 
The Hellespont, where Xerxes pass'd it o'er, 
(A curb for ever to the pride of man,') 
Was by Leander not more hateful held 
For floating, with inhospitable wave, 
'Twizt Sestus and Abydos, than by me 
That flood, because it gave no passage thence. 

" Strangers ye come ; and haply in this place v - 
That cradled human nature in her birth. 
Wondering, ye not without suspicion view 
My smiles : but that sweet strain of psalmody, 
' Thou, Lord ! hast made me glad,'^ will give ye light, 
Which may uncloud your minds. And thou, who 

The foremost, and didst make thy suit to me, 
Say if aught else thou wish to hear : for I 
Came prompt to answer every doubt of thine." 

She spake ; and I replied : " I know not how* 
To reconcile this wave, and rustling sound 
Of forest leaves, with what I late have heard 
Df opposite report." She answering thus : 
" I will unfold the cause, whence that proceeds. 
Which makes thee wonder ; and so purge the cloud 
That hath enwrapp'd thee. The First Good, whose 
Is only in himself, created man, [joy 

For happiness ; and gave this goodly place, 
His pledge and earnest of eternal peace. 
Favor'd thus highly, through his own defect 
He fell ; and here made short sojourn ; he fell, 
And, for the bitterness of sorrow, changed 
Laughter unblamed and ever-new delight. 
That vapors none, exhaled from earth beneath. 
Or from the waters, (which, wherever heat 

^ A curb for ner to tht pride of man.] Because Xerxes haU 
teen so humbled, when he was compelled to repass the Hel- 
>spont in one small boA, after having a little before crossed 
trith a prodigions army, in the hopes of subduing Greece. 

* TioUf Lord! kaot made me glad.] Fsalmxcii.4. 

> I know not how 1 See Canto 2cxi. 45 


874: THE VISION. lOl-lW 

A.ttract8 them, follow,) might ascend thus iar 

To vex man's peacefal state, this momitaiu rose 

80 high toward the heaven, nor fears the rage 

Of elements contending ;^ from that part 

Exempted, where the gate his limit bars. 

Because the circumambient air, throughout, 

With its first impulse circles still, unless 

Aught interpose to check or thwart its course ; 

Upon the summit, which on every side 

To visitation of the impassive air 

Is open, doth that motion strike, and makes 

Beneath its sway the umbrageous wood resoui.d ! 

And in the shaken plant such power resides. 

That it impregnates with its efficacy 

The voyaging breeze, upon whose subtle plume 

That^ wafted, flies abroad ; and the other land,* 

Receiving, (as His worthy in itself, 

Or in the clime, that warms it,) doth conceive ; 

And from its womb produces many a tree 

Of various virtue. This when thou hast heard. 

The marvel ceases, if in yonder earth 

Some plant, without apparent seed, be found 

To fix its fibrous stem. And further learn. 

That with prolific foison of all seeds 

This holy plain is fill'd, and in itself 

Bears fruit that ne'er was pluck'd on other soU 

" The water, thou behold'st, springs not from ^eic 
Restored by vapor,, that the cold converts ; 
As stream that intermittently repairs 
And spends his pulse of life ; but issues forth 
From fountain, solid, undecaying, sure : 
And, by the will omnific, full supply 
Feeds whatsoe'er on either side it pours ; 
On this, devolved with power to tdce away 
Remembrance of oflfonce ; on that, to bring 
Remembrance back of every good deed done. 
From whence its name of Lethe on this part ; 

1 Of tUmenU eontendiwJ] la the Dittamondo of Faaia 
Degli Uberti, 1. i. cap. xi., there is a description of the terres- 
trial Paradise, in which the poet has had Dante before him. 

s The other land.] The continent, inhabited by the liTing. 
anl separated from Purgatory by the ocean, is affected (and 
that diversely, aecording to the nature of the soil, or the cli- 
mate) by a virtne, or eincacy, conveved to it by the winds 
ftom plants growing in the terrestrial Paradise, which is sito- 
ated on the sommit of Purgatory ; and this is the cause why 
MMne plants are found on earth without any apparent seed in 
>rodace them. 

. 38-153. PURGATORY Gahto XXIX. '676 

On the other, Eunoe : both of which must first 

Be tasted, ere it work ; the last exceediiig 

All flavors else. Albeit thy thirst may now 

Be well contented, if I here break off, 

No more revealing ; yet a corollary 

I freely give beside : nor deem my words 

Less grateful to thee, if they somewhat pat« 

The stretch of promise. They, whose verse of yoro 

The golden age recorded, and its bliss, 

On the Parnassian mountain,' of this place 

Perhaps had dream'd. Here was man guiltless ; here 

Perpetual spring,^ and every fruit ; and this 

The far-famed nectar." Turning to the bards. 

When she had ceased, I noted in their looks 

A smile at her conclusion ; then my face 

Again directed to the lovely dame. • 



The lady, who in a following Canto is called Matilda, moves 
along the side of the stream in a contrary direction to the 
current, and Dante keeps eqnal pace with her on the oppo- 
site bank. A marvellous sight, preceded by music, appwn 
in view. 

SiNGiNO,* as if enamored, she resumed 
And closed the song, with <* Blessed they* whose sins 
Are cover'd." Like the wood-nymphs then, that 
Singly across the sylvan shadows ; one [tripp'd 

Eager to view, and one to 'scape the sun ; 
So moved she on, against the curront, up 
The verdant rivage. I, her mincing step 
Observing, with as tardy step pursued. 

Between us not an hundred paces trod, 
The bank, on each side bending equally, 
Gave me to face the orient Nor our way 
Far onward brought us, when to me at once 

1 Gn tA« Parnassian mountain.] 

In biclpiti somniasse Pamasso. Perinu»» ProL 

Perpetual spring.] 

Ver erat cternnm, placidiqne tepentlbus anrls 
Molcebant zephyri natos sine semine flores. 

Mamina jam lactis, jam flnmina nectaris ibant 

Ovid, Metam^ Ub. 1. v. Ill 
> Singing.] Cantava come fosse innamcNrata. 

Ouido Cavaleanti^ Poeli del primo seeolo, v % p. 883 
* Blessed they.] Psalm xxxii. 1 



376 THE VISION. 19-4D 

She tam*d, and cried: "My brother. loo]r» and 

And lo ! a sudden lustre ran across [hearken.'' 

Through the great forest on all parts, so bright, 

I doubted whether lightnmg were abroad ; 

But that, expiring ever in £e spleen 

That doth unfold it, and this during still. 

And waxing still in splendor, made me question • 

What it might be : and a sweet melody 

Ran through the luminous air. Then did I chide, 

With warrantable zeal, the hardihood 

Of our first parent ; for that there, where earth 

Stood in obedience to the heavens, she only, 

Woman, the creature of an hour, endured not 

Restraint of any veil, which had she borne 

Devoutly, joys, ineffable as these. 

Had from the first, and long time since, been min& 

While, through that wilderness of primy sweets 
That never fade, suspense I walked, and yet 
Expectant of beatitude more high ; 
Before us, like a blazing fire, the air 
Under the green boughs glowM ; and, for a song. 
Distinct the sound of melody was heard. 

ye thrice holy virgins ! for your sakes 
If e'er I suffer'd hunger, cold, and watching. 
Occasion calls on me to crave your bounty. 
Now through my breast let Helicon his stream 
Pour copious, and Urania^ with her choir 
Arise to aid me ; while the verse unfolds 
Things, that do almost mock the grasp of Ihooglit 

Onward a space, what seem'd seven trees of gold 
The intervening distance to mine eye 
Falsely piesented ; but, when I was come 
So near them, that no lineament was lost 
Of those, with which a doubtful object, seen 
Remotely, plays on the misdeeming sense ; 
Then did the faculty, that mmistera 
Discourse to reason, these for tapers of gold* 

1 Urania.} Landino observes, that Intending to ting of 
heavenly things, lie rightly hivokes Urania. Thns Mlltoa : 

Descend from Heaven, Urania, by that name 

If rightly thou art callU P. L^ b. viL 1. 

• Tapert of gold.] See Rev. 1. 12. The Cbmmentatots an 
not agreed whether the seven sacraments of the Chaich, of 
the seven gifts of the Spirit aie intended. In his Oonvtlo^ 
oiv author says : *' Because these gifts proceed from inellable 
charity^ and divine charity is appropriated to the Hdy Spirit, 
nence, also, it is that they are called gifts of the Holy Spirlti 
the which, as Isaiah dUtingulshes them, are seven.** P. 18B 

50-75. PURGATORy, Canto XXIX. S77 

Distingaish ; and i' the Bmging trace the soimd 
" Hosanna.'' Abovej their beauteous garniture 
Flamed with more ample lustre, than the moon 
Through cloudless sky at midnight, in her noon. 

I tum'd me, full of wonder, to my guide ; 
Jiud he did answer with a countenance 
Charged with no less amazement: whence my 'vie« 
Reverted to those lofty things, which came 
So slowly moving towards us, that the bride 
Would have outstripped them on her bridal day. 

The lady call'd aloud : " Why thus yet burns 
Affection in thee for these living lights, 
And dost not look on that which follows them ?" 

I straightway^ mark'd a tribe behind them walki 
As if attendant on their leaders, clothed 
With raiment of such whiteness, as on earth 
Was never. On my left, the watery gleam 
Borrowed, and gave me back, when there I look'd: 
As in a mirror, my left side portray'd. 

When I had chosen on the river's edge 
Such station, that the distance of the strean^ 
Alone did separate me ; there I stay'd 
My steps for clearer prospect, and beheld 
The flames go onward, leaving,' as they went. 
The air behind them painted as with trail 
Of liveliest pencils ;' so distinct were mark'd 

1 ThsMde.] 

£ come va per via sposa novella^ 
A passi rari, e porta gU occhl bassi 
Coa faccia vprgognosa, e non favella. 

.FVtzzt; H Quadrir., lib. 1. cap. Itf 
s Leaving.} 

Laaciando dietro a se Taer dipinto. 
Che l«3cia dietro a se Taria dipinta. 

Mr. Matkia»*9 Ode to Mr. JfiehcU, 

Orafs Works tyoX. i. p. 53S. 

> PeneUt."} Since this translation was made, Pertieari hae 
affixed another sense to the word ** pennelli,' which he in** 
terprets *' pennons** or *' streamers.*' Monti, in his I^ 
posta, highly applauds the discovery. The conjecture loses 
something <» its probability, if we read the whole passage, 
not as Ifonti gives it, bat as it stand.1 in Landino*s editioB 

Et vidi le fiamelle andar davante 
lasciando drieto a se laire dipinto 
che di tratti pennegli havea sembiante 

fflche li sopra rimanea distinto 
di sette liste tiitte in que colorl 
onde & Inrcho el sole At deUa elcinto 



378 THE VISION. Ve-Oi 

All tliose Beyen listed qolors,^ whence the euu 
Maketh his bow, and Cynthia her zone. 
These streaming gonfalons did flow beyond 
My vision ; and ten paces,' as I guess, 
Parted the outermost Beneath a sky 
So beautiful, came four and twenty elders,' 
By two and two, with flower-de-luces crownVL 
All sang one song: " Blessed be thou^ among 
The daughters of Adam ! and thy loveliness 
Blessed for ever !" After that the flowers, 
And the fresh herblets, on the opposite brink. 
Were free from that elected race ; as light 
In heaven doth second light, came after them 
Four" animals, each crown'd with verdurous leal 
With six wings each was plumed ; the plumage foil 
Of eyes ; and the eyes of Argus would be such, 
Were they endued with life. Reader ! more rhymes 
I will not waste in shadowing forth their foim * 
For other need so straitens, that in this 
I may not give my bounty room. But read 
Ezekiel f for he paints them, from the north 
How he beheld them come by Chebar*8 flood, 
In whirlwind, cloud, and fire ; and even such 
As thou shalt find them charactered by him, 

1 Listed colors.] 

Dl sette liste tutte in qnei colori, &c. 

a bow 

Conspicuous with three listed colon gay. 

Milton, P. Z., b. xL 865. 

* Ten paeee.] For an explanation of the allegorical mean- 
ing of this mysterious procession, Ventnri refers those, ** who 
would see in the daric," to the commentaries of Landino, 
Vellutelio, and others ; and adds, that it is evident the Poet 
has accommodated to his own fancy many sacred images in 
the Apocalypse. In Vassari*s Life of Giotto, wo leain that 
Dante recommended that book to his friend, as affording fit 
But^ects for his pencil. 

> Fbmr and twenty elders J] " Upon the seats I saw four ami 
twenty elders sitting." Rev, iv. 4. 

* BUssed bo thou.] " Blessed art thou among womea, and 
Messed is the fruit of thy womb." Luke, I 48. 

* Four.] The four evangelists. 

* Ezekiel.] " And I looked, and behold, a whirlwind ttmm 
.'>nt of the north, a great cloud, and a fire infolding itself, and 
^ brightness was about it, and out of the midst thereof as the 
"^lor of amber, out of the midst of the fire. 

" Also out of the midst thereof came the likeness of fbu 
living creatures. And this was their appearance ; they had 
ihe likeness of a man. 

*' And every one had four fiiees, and every one had Ibia 
wings.*' Eukiet,i.^^. 

.I»*1J< PURGATORY, Canto XXIX. 379 

Here were they ; miye as to the pennons : there. 
From him departing, John^ accords with me. 

The space, surrounded hy the four, enclosed 
A car triumphal ^ on two wheels it came, 
Drawn at a Gryphon's" neck ; and he above 
Stretch'd either wing uplifted, 'tween the midst 
And the three listed hues, on each side, three : 
So that t?ie wings did cleave or injure none ; 
And out of sight they rose. The members, fai 
As he was bird, were golden ; white the rest. 
With vermeil intervein'd. So beautiful* 
A car, in Rome, ne'er graced Augustus' itomp* 
Or A^canus' : e'en the sun's itself 
Were poor to this ; that chariot of the sun, 
Erroneous, which in blazing ruin fell 
At Tellna' prayer" devout, by the just doom 
Mysterious of all-seeing Jove. Tliree nymphs,' 
At the right wheel, came circling in smooth dance : 

1 Jtfkn.] " And the four beasts had each of them six wings 
about him.** Rev. Iv. 8. *' Aliter senas alas propter senarit 
nomeri per&ctionem posltnm arbitror ; qala in sexta state, id 
est adveniente plenltudine temponim, hjuc Apostolus peracta 
commemorat ; in novissimo enlm animall conclusit omnia.** 
PrimaHif Awuatini dUeifmii^ Episcepi C9mm«n^, lib. guinqut 
in Apocal., Ed. Basil* 1544. "■ With this interpretation it is 
verjr consonant tiiat Ezekiel discovered in these animals only 
foor wings, because his prophecy does not extend beyond the 
fourth age ; beyond that is the end of the synagogue and 
the calling of the Gentile* : whereas Dante beholdins them 
in the sixth age, saw them with six wings, as did Saint John.** 

^jtear triumphal.i Either the Christian chnrcb, or yet- 
haps the Papal chair. 

* Orffphon.] Under the gryphon, an iifiaginary creature, 
Uie fbre-part of which is an eagle, and the hinder a lion, il 
shadoved forth the onion of the divine and human nature in 
Jesus Christ. 

< .90 beoMtifMl.] 

E certo quando Roma pli][ onore 
Di carro trionfale a Scipione 
Fece, non fn cotal, nd ui splendore 
Pasfato fta da quelle, il qual Fetone 
Abbandonb per soverchio tremore. 

BoeeaeeiOf Teseide, lib. ix. ft 31 

Thus in tfie Uuadrliegio, lib. L cap. 5. 

Mai vide Roma carro trionfante 

Quanto era qdesto bel, ne vedrd uncuanco. 

* TWiM* prayer.] Ovid, Met., lib. il. v. 379. 

* 7V80 npigtht.] l*he three evangelical virtues : the flfst 
Charity, the next Hope, and the third Faith. Faith may be 
pmdoeed hy charity, tr rha»ity by faith, bat the indncementd 
U) hope must arise either flrom one or other of these. 

880 THE VISION. 113-144 

The one so ruddy, that her form had scarce 
Been known within a furnace of clear flame , 
The next did look, as if the flesh and hones 
Were emerald ; snow new-fallen seem'd the third. 
Now seem'd the white to lead, the ruddy now ; 
And from her song who led, the others took 
Their measure, swift or slow. At the other wheel. 
A band quaternion,^ each in purple clad, 
Advanced with festal step, as, of them, one 
The rest conducted f one, upon whose front 
Three eyes were seen. In rear of all this groap.9 
Two old men' I beheld, dissimilar 
In raiment, but in port and gesture like. 
Solid and mainly grave ; of whom, the one 
Did show himself some favor'd counsellor 
Of the great Coan,* him, whom nature made 
To serve the costliest creature of her tribe : 
His fellow mark'd an opposite intent ; 
Beeo'ing a sword, whose glitterance and keen edget. 
E'en as I view'd it with the flood between, 
Appaird me. Next, four others* I beheld, 
Of hiunble seeming : and, behind them all, 
One single old man," sleeping as he came. 
With a shrewd visage. And these seven, each 

1 A band quaternion.} The four moral or cardinal virtneti« 
of whom Prudence directs the others. 


The rest conducted.} Prudence, described with three eyes, 
because she regards the past, the present, and the fntoie. 

8 q\Do old men.} Saint Luke, the physician, charaeteriaed 
as the writer of the Acts of the Apostles, and Saint Fanl, re- 
presented with the sword, on account, as it should serai, ol 
the power of his style. 

* Of the great Coan.} Hippocrates, ** whom nature made &r 
the benefit of her fovorite creature, man." 

B Fbui others.} " The commentators,** says Ventnri, ** sup- 
pose these four to be the four evangelists ; bat I should rather 
take them to bo four pitncipal doctors of the church.** Tet 
both Landino and Vellutello expressly call them the anthon 
of the epistles, James, Peter, John, and Judo. 

< ?ne »intrU old man,} As some say, St John, under hli 
character of the author of the Apocalypse. Bot, In the poem 
attributed to Giacopo, the son of our Poet, which in some 
MSS. and in one of the earliest editions, accompanies tbe 
original of this work, and is descriptive of its plan, thb oU 
man is said to be Moses. 

E*. vecchio, ch* era dietro a tntU lorn, 
Fa Moyse. 

And the old man, who was behind them all, 
Was Moses. 

Bee No. 3499 of the Harl. MSS in the Fritlsh Mwoqa 

Udb &B fint froop 


nat tiMf vwB afl Ml fire^ atove tiieir 

Wbea as the ear was o'er agaout me. 
Was heaid a thimilpimg, at whuse wiee it 
Hie dBOsea nmlrthMlft were stayM ; far there. 
Widi the lint engns, mado tbey sokam halt. 



rasB hesrea, and Rtakei ifae FtacC 

Soos as that polar light*' £ur omamfiiit 
Of the first heaven, wUdi hath nerer known 
Settmg nor rinig, nor the ihadowy veil 
Of other dond than an, to doty there 
£adi one eoDvojmg, as that lower doth 
llie steeiBman to hb port, stood fizmly fiz'd ; 
Forthwith the saintly tribe, who in the Tan 
B^wem the Giyphon and its radiaaiee came. 
Did torn them to the car, as to their rest: 
And one, as if eommisBkn'd bom. aboire. 
In holy chant thaoe Aonted forth alood ; 
*< Come,' ipoase ! from Tihanns:" and aU the rest 
Took np the song^ — ^At the last audit, so 
The Uest shall rise, from forth his caTem each 
Uplifimg lightly his new-vested flesh ; 
As, on Sie saczed litter, at the Toice 
AnthnitatiTe of that elder, sprang 
A hundred ministi-ini and messengen 
Of life etonaL ** Blessed* thoa, who oofhest !" 

iMlnJb^] SoGileiFleltlieF— 

The wood's late wintry bead 
WUh flamiag pdmroses set all oa fire. 

CkruVs 7V£u^ afirr Dmtiu 

^natpttsriML] The aCTga caadlfntirtri of ffold, wMefc 
he calls the polar li|^t of heaven itseU; beeanae tbey per- 
font the aaaM oOee te Christians that Ifae polar star doot 
far maiinen, In guiding tbran to their port. 

* GvaM.] *'Coaie with me fioni liebanon, ipf spouse, with 
oie, fiom Lebanon." 8cm/r of Stlammif iv. & 

^Bietaed.1 " Blessed is he that eoK<9eth in tie name ol the 
Locd." JHiff.xzL9. 


S82 1^^ VISION 30^ 

And, « Oh !" they cried, « from full handa^ scatter yf 
Unwithering lilies :" and, so saying, cast 
Flowers over head and round tiiem on all sides 

I have beheld, ere now, at break of day. 
The eastern clime all roseate ; and the sky 
Opposed, one deep and beautiful serene ; 
And the sun*s face so shaded, and with mists 
Attemper'd, at his rising, that the eye 
Long while endured the sight : thus, in a clond 
Of flowers,^ that frcm those hands angelic roM^ 
And down within and outside of the car 
Fell showering, in white veil with olive wreatlied* 
A virgin in my view appeared, beneath 
Green mantle, robed in hue of living flame : 
And' o'er my spirit, that so long a time 
Had from her presence felt no shuddering dreadt 
Albeit mine eyes discem'd her not, there moveir 
A hidden virtue from her, at whose touch 
The power of ancient love^ was strong within me 

1 FromftUl hands.] Manibns date lilia plants. 

Ftr/., ^}i., 

3 ■ In a doud 

OfJlotDers.] Dentro una nuvola di fiori. 

nlnguntque rccsaruiu. 

Florlbus, umbrantes matrem, &c. LucretiiUf lib. IL 
Vhxu Milton : 

Eve separate he spies, 

VeilM in a cloud of fragrance, where she stood. 

P. Z.., b.ix V.4K 
And Thomson, in his Invocation to Spring * 

veil*d in a showet 

Of shadowing roses, on oar plains descend. 
> Jind.] In the first edition it stood thns : 
And b er my spirit, that in former days 
Within her presence had abode so long, 
No shuddering terror crept. Mine eyes no more 
Had Icnowiedge of her; yet there moved flrom her 
A hidden virtue, at whose touch awalced, &c. 

And this was a translation of the common reading, which has 
** con la sua presonzo,** instead of " che alia sua presen m," 
and a ftiU stop Instead of a comma after " infiranlo.** As 1 
have little dotfbt but that the reading of the Midobeatiaa 
edition and that of many BI8S. Is right in this instance, I 
Have altered the version as it now stands in the text, which 
•till perhaps needs some explanation. His spirit, which had 
been so long imawed by the preseDce of Beatrice, (for she had 
been ten years dead,) now felt, through a secret Influence 
fvoceeding fh>m her, its ancient love revived, thovgh his 
rtght had not yet distinguished her. 

4 ne power of ancient love,] 

IVantico amor senti la gran potenxa. 
lo iento si d'amor la gmn possanxa. 

Danie, Obimmm Y*. 

»-7<J. PURGATORY, Caoto XXX. S83 

No Boouer on my vision streaming, smote 
The heayenly influence, which, years past, and t eii 
In childhood, thriird me, than towards Virgil I 
Tum'd me to leftward ; panting, like a babe, 
That flees for refuge to his mother's breast. 
If aught haye terrmed or work'd him wo : 
And would have cried, " There is no dram of blood 
That doth not quiver in me. The old flame^ 
Throws out dear tokens of reviving fire." 
But Virgil had bereaved us of himself; 
Virgil, my best-loved father ; Virgil, he 
To whom I gave me up for safety : nor* 
All, our prime mother lost, availed to save 
My imdew'd cheeks from blur of soiling tears. 

" Dante ! weep not, that Virgil leaves thee ; nayi 
Weep thou not yet : behooves thee feel the edge 
Of other sword ; and thou shalt weep for that." 

As to the prow or stem, some admiral 
Paces the deck, inspiriting his crew. 
When 'mid the sail-yards all hands ply aloof; 
Thus, on the left side of the car, I saw 
(Turning me at the sound of mine own name, 
Which here I am compelled to register) 
The virgin stationed, who before appear'd 
Veil'd m that festive shower angelical. 

Towards me, across the stream, she bent her eyes 
Though from her brow the veil descending, bomid 
With foliage of Minerva, suffer'd not 
That I beheld her clearly : then with act 
Full royal, still insulting o'er her thrall, 
Added, as one who, speaking, keepeth back 
The bitterest saying, to conclude the speecn : 
" Observe me well. I am, in sooth, I am 
Beatrice. What ! and hast thou deign'd at last 
Approach the mountain ? Knewest not> O mau ! 
Thy happiness is here V* Down fell mine eyes 
On the clear fount ; but there, myself espying, 
Recoil'd, and sought the greenswerd ; such a weight 

Sveglia d'antlco amor la gran possanza. 

ito Mr.M'iehola, 
4to. 1814, vol. 1. p 

Mr, Mathiat^M Ode to Mr, JWeAW«, Ortxy'a Workkf 

^ The old fiam^'] 

Agnosco veteris vestigia flammie. 

Virg. ^11., lib. iv. 23. 
Conosco i segni dell* andco ftioco. 

■ Gnuto de* Graft, La Bella Mom 

t JVbr.] **Not all the beantles of the terrestrial Faralisc 
D wUcli was, were saflicient to allay my grief." 

884 THE VISION. 'T'i m 

Of Bhame was on my foiehead. With a miei. 

Of that stem majesty, which doth surroand 

A mother's presence to her awe-struck cliild, 

She look'd ; a flavor of such bitterness 

Was mingled in her pity. There her words 

Brake off; and suddenly the angels sang, 

« In thee, O gracious liord! my hope hath been:" 

But^ went no farther than, " Thou, Lord ! hast set 

My feet in ample room." As snow, that lies. 

Amidst the living raften^ on the back 

Of Italy, congeal'd, when drifted high 

And closely piled by rough Sclavonian blasts ; 

Breathe but the land whereon no shadow falls,* 

And straightway melting it distils away. 

Like a fire-wasted taper: thus was I, 

Without a sigh or tear, or ever these 

Did sing, that, with the chuning of heaven's sphere. 

Still in their warbling chime : but when the strain 

Of dulcet symphony expressed for me 

Their soft compassion, more than could the words, 

*' Virgin ! why so consumest him 7" then, the ice,^ 

Congeal'd about my bosom, tum'd itself 

To spirit and water ; and with anguish forth 

Gush'd, through the lips and eyelids, from the heart 

Upon the chariot's same edge' still she stood. 
Immoveable ; and thus address'd her words 
To those bright semblances with pity touch'd : 
" Ye in the eternal day your vigils keep ; 
So that nor night nor slumber, with close stealth. 
Conveys from you a single step, in all 

I BtU.\ They sang the thirty-first Psalm, to the end of the 
eighth verse. What follows In that Psalm would not have 
suited the place or the occasion. 

• The living rafters.} ** Vive trovi." The leafless woods 
on the Apenmne. 

Fnudnecque trabes. '^t'Vtr-> «^'*-» Ub. vL 181. 


Trabibosque obscunis acemis. Ibid., lib. ix. 87. 

* Tlu land vhereon no shadow fallt.\ *' When the wim: 
l»low8 from Off Africa, where, at the time of the eqolnoz, 
bodies, beini under the equator, cast little or no shadow ; or. 
h other werds, when the wind is south." 

* 7%3 tee.} Milton has transferred this conceit, thoq^ 
icarcely worth the pains of removing, into one of his Itallaa 
poems, Son. v. 

• Same edge.] Tho Nidobeatlna edition, and maay BI9BL 
here read " detta eoscia," instead qf " destra," or ** dritta eoo* 
da ;** and it is probable firom what has gone befora, that tho 
fltnxier is the right reading. See v. 60. 

107-144. PURGATORY, Ca^vto XXX. 985 

The goingB on of time ; thence, with more heed 

[ shape mine answer, for his ear intended, 

Who there stands weeping ; that the sorrow now 

May equal the transgression. Not alone 

Through q^ration of the mighty orbs. 

That mark each seed to some predestined aim, 

As with aspect or fortunate or ill 

The constellations meet ; but through benign 

Largess of heavenly graces, which rain down 

From such a height as mocks our vision, this mau 

Was, in the freshness of his being,^ such, 

So gifted virtually, that in him 

All better habits wondrously had thrived. 

The more of kindly strength is in the soil. 

So much doth evil seed and lack of culture 

Mar it the more, and make it run to wildness. 

These looks sometime upheld hun ; for I show'd 

My youthful eyes, and led him by their light 

In upright walking. Soon as I had reaeh'd 

The threshold of my second age,' and changed 

My mortal for immortal ; then he left me. 

And gave himself to others. When from flesh 

To spirit I had risen, and increase 

Of beauty and of virtue circled me, 

I was less dear to him, and valued less. 

His steps were tum'd into deceitful. ways. 

Following false images of good, that make 

No promise perfect Nor availed me aught 

To sue for inspirations, with the which, 

I, both in dreams of night, and otherwise. 

Did call him back ; of them, so little reck'd hiiu 

Such depth he fell, that all device was short 

Of his preserving, save that he should view 

The children of perdition. To this end 

I visited the purliens of the dead : 

And one, who hath conducted him thus high, 

Received my supplications urged with weeping 

It were a breaking of God's high decree, 

1 In thtfreaknest of hit being.) 

Nella sua vita nnova. 

dome sappose car Poet alludes to the work so called, wri ttt i 

* T%4 tkr«$hold of my teeond age.] In the Ck>nvlto, our Poel 
makes a division of human lite into fomr ages, the first of 
which lasts till the twenty-fifth year. Beatrice, therefiyre, 
Bassed firom this life to a better, about that period. See the 
(life of Dante prefixed. 


S86 THE VISION. 145, UG 

If Lethe should be pasB*d, imd mich food^ tastei!^ 
Witliout the cost of some repentant tear.'* 



fieatrice continues her reprehension of Dante, who conAaecs 
his error, and falls to the ground: coming to hlmacif 
again, he Is by Matilda drawn through the waters of 
IJethe, and presented first to the four virgins who flgnre 
the cardinal virtues ; these in their turn lead him to the 
Gryphon, a symbol of our Saviour ; and the three .viiijiiM, 
representing the evangelical virtues, intercede for bin* 
with Beatiicc, that she would display to him her jiecom! 

« O THOU !" her words she thus without delay 
Resuming, tum'd their point on me, to whom 
They, with but lateral edge,' seem'd harsh before : 
" Say thou{ who stand'st beyond the holy stream. 
If this be true. A charge, so grievous, needs 
Thine own avowal" On my faculty 
Such strange amazement hung, the voice expired 
Imperfect, ere its organs gave it birth. 

A little space refraining, then she Efpake : 
" What dost thou muse on? Answer me. The wave 
On thy remembrances of evil yet 
Hath done no injury." A mingled sense 
Of fear and of confusion, from my lips 
Did such a ** Yea" produce, as needed help 
Of vision to interpret. As when breaks, 
In act to be discharged, a cross-bow bent 
Beyond its pitch, both nerve and bow o'erstretch'd t 
The flagging weapon feebly hits the mark : 
Thus, tears and sighs forth gushing, did I buzst 
Beneath the heavy load : and thus my voice 
Was slackenM on its way. She straight begau 
" When my desire invited thee to love 
The good, which sets a bound to onr aspirings ; 
What bar of thwarting foss or linked chain 
Did meet tliee, that thou so sbouldst quit the hope 
Of further progress 7 or what bait of ease. 
Or promise of allurement, led thee on 
Elsewhere, that thou ^ Ise where sbouldst rather wailf' 


^ Such food.] The oblivioii of sim. 

• With but laUral edfe.] The words of Beatrice, when nol 
dddrossed directly to himself, but spoken to the asfel Ulstau 
llante bod thought safficiently harsh. 

19-M. PURGATORY, Canto XXXI. 887 

A bitter sigh I drew, then scarce found voice 
To answer ; hardly to these sounds my lipa 
Gave utterance, wailing : " Thy fair looks withdrawu, 
Things present, with deceitful pleasures, tum'd 
My steps aside." She answering spake : " Hadst thoa 
Been silent, or denied what thou avow'st. 
Thou hadst not hid thy sin the more ; such eye 
Observes it But whene'er the sinner's cheek 
Breaks forth i|ito the precious-streaming teais 
Of self-accusingj in our court the wheel 
Of justice doth run counter to the edge.^ 
Howe'er, that thou mayst profit by thy shame 
For errors past, and that henceforth mora strength 
May arm thee, when thou hear'st the Syren-voice , 
Lay thou aside the motive to this grief, 
And lend attentive ear, while I unfold 
How opposite a way my buried flesh 
Should have impell'd thee. Never didst thou spy, 
In art or nature, aught so passing sweet. 
As were the limbs that in theur beauteous frame 
Enclosed me, and are scatter'd now in dust. 
If sweetest thing thus fail'd thee with my death, 
What, afterward, of mortal, should thy wish 
Have tempted? When thou first hadst felt the dart 
Df perishable things, in my departing 
For better realms, thy wmg thou shoiddst have pruned 
To follow me ; and never stoop'd again. 
To 'bide a second blow, for a slight girl,' 

^ Ckmnter to the edge,} ** The weapons cff divide justice are 
blunted by the confession and sonow of the offender.*' 

a Jbr a Blight girl.] "Daniello and Ventori say that this 
alludes to Gentncca of Lncca, njcntioned in the twenty- 
fourth Canto. They did not, however, observe that Bnonag- 
giinta there gives ns to understand, that Dante knew not if 
Gentncca were then in the world, and that Beatrice is now 
reprehending him for past and not for future errors.*' Thus 
Lombardi. Pelli (Memor., p. ST) acquaints us that Coiblnelli, 
m the Life of Dante, added to the edition of the De Vulg. 
laoq., says the name of this lady was *' Pargoletta." But tHe 
intimation, as Pelli justly remarks, can scarcely be deemed 
authentic. The annotator on the Monte Gassino MS. gives a 
vsry diflerent torn to the allusion. ** Que proca Aiit,** Ace 
** Tills was either a mistress ; or else it is put for the poetic 
■rt, as when he says in a certain song: 

lo mi son pargoletta bella e nuova 
£ son venuta. 

which rebuko of Beatrice's may be delivered In the persun of 
many theok^ns dissuading nom poetry and other woridly 
■denoes ; a rebuke that should be directed against those whii 
lead the poets to gratify their own inclinanon, and not foi 
flie sake of instruction, that they may defeat the errors of 

S88 THE VISION 9h9i 

Or other gaud as traiuient and as yam. 
The new and inexperienced bird^ awaits, 
Twice it may be, or thrice, the fowler's aim ; 
But in the sight of one whose plumes are fidi, 
In vain the net is spread, the arrow wing'd.** 

I stood, as children silent and ashamed 
Stand, listening, with their eyes upon the eartlii 
Acknowledging their fatdt, and self-condemn*d 
And she resumed : " If, but to hear, thus pains thee 
Raise tliou thy beard, and lo ! what sight shall do ^ 

With less reluctance yields a sturdy holm. 
Rent from its fibres by a blast, that blows 
From off the pole, or from larbas* land,* 
Than I at her behest my visage raised : 
A.nd thus the face denoting by the beard,* 
£ mark'd the secret sting her words conyey'd 

No sooner lifted I mine aspect up. 
Than I perceived* those primal creatures cease 
Their flowery sprinkling ; and muie eyes beheld 
(Yet unassured and wavering in their view) 
Beatrice ; she, who towards the mystic shape. 
That joins two natures in one form, had tum'd 
And, even under shadow of her veil. 
And parted by the verdant rill that flow*d 
Between, in loveliness she seem'd as much 
Her former self-surpassing, as on earth 
All othen she suxpass'd. Remorseful goads 
Shot sudden through me. Each thing else, the more 

the GeatUeS.** It nemaliiB to be oonaldered whether mu 
Poet*8 murriage with Gemma de* Dcmatl, and the dlAeultlea 
In which that engagement involved him, may not be the ob 
ject of Beatrice's dupleasore. 

> Bird.] ** Barely in vain the net \» spread in the sight ol 
%ny bird." Prov. 1. 17. 

s Rrem larhaa' land.] The sonth. 

I Th9 heard.] "I perceived, that when she desired me ta 
taise my bea«^ instead of telling me to Uft np mv head, a se* 
k'ere reflection was implied on my want of that wisdom whkli 
sboold accompany the age of manhood." 

« T^ji / pmvsteed.] I had befbre translated this diflbi^ 
mtly, and in agreement with those editions which read 

Posarsi quelle belle cre a t ur e 
Da loro appardon. 
Instead of 

Posarsi inelle prime cieatare 
Da loro aspefsioa. 

for which reading I am indebted to LombardI, ^ho deilvoi 
It fkom the Nilobeatina edition. By the " primal cfealores* 
fue meant the angels, who were scattering the flown* oa 

cjb 110. PURGATORY, Camto XXXL 889 

Its love had late beguiled me, now the more 
Was loathsome. On my heart so keenly smote 
The bitter consciousness, that on the ground 
O'erpower'd I fell : and what my state was thei}, 
She knows, who was the cause. When now 105 

Flow'd lMu;k, returning outward from the heart, 
The lady,^ whom alone I first had seen, 
I found above me. ** Loose me not," she cried : 
** Loose not thy hold :" and lo ! had dragg'd me high 
As to my neck into the stream ; while iSie* 
Still as she drew me after, swept along, , 
Swift as a shuttle, bounding o'er the wave. 

The blessed shore approaching, then was heard 
So sweetly, ** Tu asperges me,'^ that I 
May not remember, much less tell the sound. 

The beauteous dame, her arms expanding, clasped 
My temples, and immerged me where 'twas fit 
The waye should drench me : and, thence rainng up, 
Within, the fourfold dance of lovely nymphs 
Presented me so laved ; and with their arm 
They each did cover me. " Here are we nymphs, 
And in the heaven are stars.' Or ever earth 
Was visited of Beatrice, we, 
Appointed for her handmaids, tended on her. 
We to her eyes will lead thee : but the light 
Of giadnesB, that is in them, well to scan, 
Thme yonder three,* of deeper ken than oon. 
Thy si^t shall qnieken." Thus began their song : 
And then they led me to the Qryfiboa't breast, 
Where, tum'd toward ns, Beatrice ttood, 
*< Spare not thy vtsion. We have stationed thee 
Before the emerald^f whence love, emwbS^f 

1 Tk^Uif.] MatiUs. 

s T» mapergeg mc] '^Psife me wilh kTWOp, and f flkSlI 
fte deas ; wuh me, mad I shall be whiter tbsa mem J* f§ 
D. 7. Biraf by the €bdk, yfiaiit the priest Is ffrSskflag the 
people wxdt holy wato; 

« Thnt p m uUr arw,) Faitb, hope, and eharlt7, 

• Thm mmwUr.j Tfts efm ef Sesfttee; The mthfur M 

mmntlaM of ahBhspisi, apsi, vm^ vet. tt^ pi. JM^ fMf 

SBfeoned to oU wxlttB, by whon the epttbef ip««fi !• pinm 

\sj Ike early Jvtat^ poeti, satf by Mnilwpn e w y 


M 4irick, so feir sii ^e. 
Aat eyes of Ibis ttAM son SHKdV 
now dun Ibmwrly, is wx so pmhabWi ss riM4 
and eq^eeiaUj poeiBy sfapatd 9X fUnes be «(Vin«w))«»# 

090 niE VISION. IIT-Me. 

Hath drawn hk weapons on thee." As they apoke 

A thousand feirent wishes xiyeted 

Mine eyes upon her beamin|f eyes, that stood, 

Still fix'd toward the Gryphon, motionless. 

As the sun strikes a minor, even thus 

Withm those orbs the twyfold bem^ shone : 

For ever varying, in one fiinire now 

Reflected, now in other. Reader ! muse 

How wondrous in my sight it seem'd, to mark 

A thing, albeit steadfast in itself. 

Yet in its imaged semblance mntable. 

Full of amaze, and jojrous, while my sou] 
Fed on the viand, whereof stilt desire 
Grows with satie^ ; the other three. 
With gesture that declared a loftier line, 
Advanced : to their own carol, on they earac 
Dancing, in festive ring angelical. 

" Turn, Beatrice V* was their sonff : " Oh ! turn 
Thy samtly sight on this thy faithfu one. 
Who, to behold thee, many a wearisome pace 
Hath measured. Gracious at our prayer, vouchsafe 
Unveil to him thy cheeks ; that he may mark 
Thy second beauty, now conceal'd." O splendor * 
O sacred lifht eternal ! who is he, 
So pale witii musing in Pierian shades. 
Or with that fount so laviiUy imbued, 
Whose spirit should not fail him in the essay 
To represent thee such as thon didst seem. 
When under cope of the still-«himing heaven 
Thou gavest to open air thy charms reveal'd? 


Dante is warned not to gase too flzedlv on Beatrice. Ito 
procession moves on, accompanied by Matilda, St&tlni, arnJ 
Bante, till they reach an exceeding lofty tree, where d'ven 
strange chances befltll. 

MxNB eyes with such an eager oovetiag 
Were bent to rid them of their ten yean^ thirst,* 
No other sense was wakmg : and e'en they 

loose and general in applying tsrats exprawlve of color, 
whereof an Instance may be seen In sobm Infenloas nmaiki 
iiyMr.Blomfleldonthewordm^iw^. JEatMiFtnm Kdii 
tcfti, Gloesar., p. 107. 
' Tkmrtnyeart^ tMr9t.\ Beatrice had been dead ten yeSTS 

«-37. PURGATORY, Canto XXXIL 301 

Were fmoed on either ode firom heed of aught ; 

Bo tangled, in its eastom'd toib, that smile 

Of saintly brightness drew me to itself : 

When foreibly, toward the left, my sight 

The sacred virgins tcffn'd ; for from their lips 

I heard the wanning somids : <* Too fix*d a gaxe P' 

Awhile my vision labored ; as when late 
Upon the o'entrained eyes the son hath smote * 
But soon,' to lesser object, as the view 
Was now recovered, (lesser in respect 
To that excess of sensible, whence late 
I had perforce been snnder'd,) on their right 
I mark'd that glorious army wheel, and turn, 
Against the sun and sevenfold lights, their front. 
As whmi, their bucklers for protection raised, 
A well>ranged troop, with portly banners curi'd, 
Wheel circling, ere the whole can change their 
E'en thus the goodly regiment of heaven, [ground ; 
Proceeding, all did pass us, ere the car 
Had sloped his beam. Attendant at the wheels 
The damsels tum'd ; and on the Gryphon moved 
The sacred burden, with a pace so smooth, 
No feather on hun trembled. The fair dame, 
Who through the wave had drawn me, companied 
By Statius and myself, pursued the wheel. 
Whose orbit, rollmg, mark*d a lesser arch, [blame, 

Through the high wood, now void (the more her 
Who by the seipent was beguiled) I pass'd, 
With step in cadence to the harmony 
Angelic Onward had we moved, as far, 
Perchance, as arrow at three several flights 
Full wing'd had sped, when from her station down 
Descended Beatrice. With one voice 
All murmur'd " Adam ;" circling next a plant* 

i Too Jix''d a gate.] The allegorical interpretalioB of Yel- 
lutello, whether it be considered as justly inferrible ih>m the 
text or not, conveys so nsefiil a lesson, that it deserves our 
notice. **The tmderstanding is sometUnes so intently en- 
gsfed in eontemplating the light of Avine truth in the Scrip- 
tores, that it becomes daszled, and Is made less capable of 
attafaiag iach knowledge, than if it had f poght afler it with 
gieatar moderallOD.*' 

> But »emi.\ As soon as his sight was recovered, so as to 
bear tfafs view of that gtortoas piecessfon, wnlefa, sirfendid as 
it was, was yet less so than Beatrice, by whom his visiOB had 
been ovafpoweBed, 4cc. 

' Ji plant.] Lombardl has coajectnred, with much proba 
bitttyt that this tiee is not (as preceding commentates had 
supposed) merely intended to represent the tree of knowledgf 


Despoil'd of floireiB and leaf, cm ef ery boo^ 
Ite tresses,' ^leadmg more as more they ran, 
Were soch, as 'midst their Sorest ¥rilds» for heig!M» 
The Indians' mi|^t have gazed aL " Blcied thou 
Gryphon I* whose beak haSi never pfaiek'd thai tree 
neasant to taste : for hence the a|ipetite 
Was waxp'd to eviL** Roond the stately tnmk 
Thus shouted forth the rest* to whom letmn'd 
The animal twice-gender'd : " Yea I for so 
The generation of the just are saved." 
And turning to the chaiiot-pole, to foot 
He drew it of the widow'd faianeh, and boond 
There, lefl onto the stock* whereon it grew. 

As when laige floods of radiance* from above 
Stream, with that radiance mingled, which ascende 
Next after setting of the scaly sign. 
Our plants then boigein, and eadi weaxs anew 
His wonted colors, ere the son have yokeil 

of good and evil, but that the Roman empire is figured by ir 
Among the marims maintained by our Poet, as the sam? 
commentator otMerres, were these: that one monarchy had 
been willed by Flrovidenoef and was aecenary tar miiversaJ 
peace ; and that this monarchy, by light of justice and by 
the divine ordinance, belonged to the Eoman people only. 
His Treatise de Mooaichli was wiillea indeed to ineolcata 
these niaxims, and to prove that the temponl moBarchy de 
pends immediately on God, and should be kept as distinct af 
possiUe firom the authority of Uie pope. 

1 It* trestes.] ** I saw, and behold, a tree in the midst of 
•he earth, and tlie height thereof was great." Dmdd, ir. la 

) Tkelmdiam*.] 

QjiM oceano proprior geiit India locos. 

Firjf. George lib. ii. IS 

Such as at this day to In£ans known. 

MUtrnt^t £.,h.ix.]Ne 

Org/ium.!] Omr Saviour's solmisnan to the Boman em 
pire appears to be intended, and particiilarly his if^nncticm, 
** to render onto Oesar the tliiags diat are GBsax's.*' 

4 Tlere, left wmta tlu stmek.} Dante here teoBB, I think, 
to Ultimate what he has attempted toprove at the eoBclasioB 
of the seccMid book de Mimarr.hit ; namely, that our Savioor, 
iiy his sofieiittg imder tlie sentence, not of Hered, bat of 
mate, wlio was the delegate of tlie Romaa emperor, acknow- 
ledged and confirmed the supremacy of that empeiu r over 
the whole world ; for if, as he amies, all mankimi were be- 
come sinners through the sin of Adam, no ponishmen^ that 
was inflicted bv one who had a right of JnrlsdietioB ovef 
less than the whole hwnan race, could have been soAcieBt 
to satisfy far the sins of all men. See note to Paiadte, c. 

• ffkem lwrg€ $oodM of radimee.] When the sai 
Into Aries, .the constellation next to tliat of the Fish. 

54H». PUKGATORY, CAirro XXXIL 898 

Beneath another star hk flamy steeds ; 

Thus patting forth a hue more faint than rosei 

And deeper than the -?iolet, was renew'd 

The plant, erewhile in all its hranehes bare. 

Unearthly was the hymn, whidi then arose. 

I nndentood it not, nor to the end 

Endured the lAmiony. Had I the skill 

To pencil forth how dosed the unpitjring eyes' 

Slumbering, when Syrinx warbled, (eyes that paid 

So dearly for their watehmff) then, like painter, 

Tliat with a model paints, I might design 

The manner of my falling into sleep. 

But feign who will the slumber cunningly, 

I pass it by to when I waked ; and tell, 

How suddenly a flssh of splendor rent 

The curtam of my sleep, and one cries out, 

*< Aiise: what dost thou?" As the chosen three, 

On Tabor's mount,, admitted to behold 

The blossoming of that fair tree,* whose fruit 

Is coveted of angels, and doth make 

Perpetual feast in heaven ; to themselves 

Returning, at the word whence deeper sleeps' 

Were fan&en, they their tribe diminish'd saw ; 

Both Moses and Elias gone, and changed 

The stole their master wore ; thus to myself 

Retnming, over me beheld I stand 

The piteous one,^who, cross the stream, had brought 

My steps. *' And where," all dou]>ting, I exdaim'd, 

** Is Beatrice?"— .« See her," she replied, 

'< Beneath the fiesh leaf, seated on its root 

Behold the associate choir, that circles her. 

The others, with a melody more sweet 

And more profound, journeying to higher realms, 

Upon the Gr3rphon tend." If there her words 

Were closed, I know not ; but mine eyes had now 

Ta'en view of her, by whom all other thoughts 

Were barr'd admittance. On the very ground 

Alone she sat, as she had there been left 

A guard upon the wain, which I beheld 

Bound to the twyform beast. The seven nymphs 

1 The wnpitfing eyes.] See Ovid, Met, lib. i. 680. 

s The hU»9owing 9f that fwf trw.] Our Saviour*! tmnsfign^ 
ntion. ** As the apple-tree among the trees of the wood, n 
It my beloved among the sons.'* Solowtom^s •SffiW U ^' 

> De^er Bleep:"] The sleep of death, in the instance of the 
lUlsr Of the Synagogue's daughter and of Lazanis. 

« TUfiW'^B Me.J MatUda. 

B04 THE VISION. */^iaa 

Did make themselves a cloister round ehaat her ; 
And, in their hands, upheld those lights^ secure 
From blast septentrion and the gasty south. 

" A little while thou shalt be forester here ; 
And citizen shalt be, for ever with me. 
Of that true Rome,' wherein Christ dwells a Roman 
To profit the misguided world, keep nW 
Thine eyes upon the car ; and what thou seest, 
Take heed thou write, returning to that place.'*' 

Thus Beatrice : at whose foet inclined . 
Devout, at her behest, my thought and eyes, 
I, as she bade, directed. Never fire. 
With so swift motion, forth a stormy cloud 
Leap*d downward from the welkin's farthest bound* 
As I beheld the bird of Jove* descend 
Down through the tree ; and, as he rush'd, the rind 
Disparting crush beneath him ; buds much more, 
And leaflets. On the car, with all his might 
He struck ; whence, staggering, like a ship it reel'd. 
At random driven, to starboard now, overcome* 
z\iid now to larboard, by the vaulting waves. 

Next, springing up into the chariot's womb, 
A fox* I saw, with hunger seeming pined 
Of all good food. But, for his ugly sins 
The samtly maid rebuking him, away 
Scampering he tum'd, fast as bis hide-bound corpse 
Would bear him. Next, from whence before he came 
I saw the eagle dart into the hull 
O' the car, and leave it with his feathers lined f 
And then a voice, like that which issues forth 
From heart with sorrow rived, did issue forth 
From heaven, and, *< O poor bark of mine !" it cried 
^ How badly art thou freighted." Then it seem'd 
That the earth open'd, between either wheel ; 
And I beheld a dragon'' issue thence. 

1 T%08e light*.] The tapers of gold. 
> Of that true Rome.] Of heaven. 

* To that place.] To the earth. 

* 7%e bird ofJneA This, which Is imitated from Ezekiel 
ivii. 3,4, is typical of the persecntions which the church sm* 
Cained from the Koman emperors. 

* A fox.] By the fox probably \b represented the treachwy 
of the heretics. 

* Tftth hie featkere lined.] In allusion to the donatlonf 
made by Constantine to the church. 

T A ir0|fM.J Probably Blahomet ; for what LombardI oObn 
\} the contrary is for fiom satisfketaiy. 

131-157. PURGATORY, Cantc XXXIH. 896 

That through the chariot fix'd his forked train ; 
And like a wasp, that draggeth back the sting, 
So drawmg forth his baleful train, he dragged 
Part of tlie bottom forth ; and went his way- 
Exulting. What remam'd, as lively turf 
With green herb, so did clothe itself with plumes,* 
Which haply had, with purpose chaste and kmd, 
Been offered ; and therewith were clothed the wheels 
Both one and other, and the beam, so quickly, 
A sigh -were not breathed sooner. Thus transform *di 
The holy structure, through its several parts. 
Did put forth heads f three on the beam, and one 
On every side : the first like oxen hom'd ; 
But with a single horn upon their front, 
The four. Like monster, sight hath never seen. 
O'er it' methought there sat, secure as rock 
On mountain's lofty top, a shameless whore, 
Whose ken roved loosely round her. At her side, 
As 'twere that none might bear her off, I saw 
A giant stand ; and ever and anon 
They mingled kisses. But, her lustful eyes 
Chancing on me to wander, that fell minion 
Scourged her from head to foot all o'er ; then full 
Of jedousy, and fierce with rage, imloosed 
The monster, and dragg'd on,^ so far across 
The forest, that from me its shades alone 
Shielded the harlot and the new-form'd brute. 



After a hymn song, Beatrice leaves the tree, and takes with 
her the seven virgins, Matilda, Statins, and Dante. Sho 

1 ffUh pluMet.} The Increase of wealth and temponU do- 
minion, which followed the supposed gift of Constantino. 

• Heads.] By the seven heads, it is supposed with snlD- 
eient probabilitv, are meant the seven capital sins : by the 
three with two horns, pride, anger, and avarice, tnjorioas both 
to man himself and to his neighbor : by the four with one 
horn, gluttony, gloominess, concupiscence, and envy, hnrtftU, 
at least in their primary efl^cts, chiefly to him who is guilty 
of them. Teilatello refers to Rev. xvii. Landino, who ia 
followed by Lombardi, understands the seven hieads to slgniA^ 
the seven sacraments, and the ten horns the ten command* 
meuts. Compare Hell, c. xix. 112. 

> O'er it.\ The harlot is thought to represent the state o5 
;lie church under Boniface YIU., and the giant to figure 
Philip IV. of France. 

* Drafg*i on.] The removal of Uic pope''s residence ftoro 
Rome to Avignon is pointed at. 

396 THE VISION l-ai 

then darUy predicts to our Poets some fntcre events. Last- 
ly, the whole band arrive at the fonntaln, firom wheuce the 
two streams, Lethe and Eonoe, separating, flow different 
ways; and Matilda, at the desire of Beatrice, causes our 
Foet to drink of the latter stream. 

" The heatheiii' Lord ! are come :" responsive thos. 
The trinal now, and now the virgin band 
Quaternion, their sweet psabnody began. 
Weeping ; and Beatrice listened, sad 
And sighing, to the song, in such a mood, 
That Mary, as she sto<Ml beside the cross, . [place 
Was scarce more changed. But when they gave her 
To speak, then, risen upright on her feet, 
She, with a color glowing bright as fire* 
Did answer : " Yet a litUe while,' and ye 
Shall see me not ; and, my- beloved sisters ! 
Again a little while, and ye shall see me." 

Before her then i^e marshalPd all the seven ; 
And, beckoning only, motion'd me, the dame. 
And that remaining sage,* to follow her. 

So on she pass'd ; and had not set, I ween. 
Her tenth step to the ground, when, with mine eyes. 
Her eyes encountered ; and, with visage mild, 
" So mend thy pace," she cried, ** that if my worda 
Address thee, thou mayst still be aptly placed 
To hear them." Soon as duly to her side 
I now had hastened : " Brother !" she began, 
" Why makest thou no attempt at questioning. 
As thus we walk together?" Like to those 
Who, speaking with too reverent an awe 
Before their betters, draw not forth the voice 
Alive unto theur lips, befell me then 
That I in sounds unperfect thus began : 
<' Lady ! what I have need of, that thou knoVst ; 
And what will suit my need." She answering this 
<* Of feaifulness and shame, I will that thou 
Henceforth do rid thee ; that thou speak no more. 
As one who dreams.^ Thus far be taught of me : 
The vessel which thou saVst the serpent break, 

1 The heathen.'] " O God, the heathen are come into tbiac 
inheritance." P«aZmlxzix. 1. 

*reta little while,] ** A Uttie whUe, and ye shall not tec 
BM ; and agahi a little while, and ye shall see me.** Ate) 

*JJ%atrewiaMag9ei£e.} Statins 

*Jl$9newho ireame.] Imitated by Petrarch, L. L s. 41. 

Se parole f^, 

0ono Unperfette e qnan d*uom cno togna. 

3&-&I. PURGATORY, Canto XXXIII. 897 

Was, and is not :' let him» who hath the blame, 
Hope not to scare God's vengeance with a sop.* 
Without an heir for ever shaB not be 
That eagle,' He, who left the chariot plumed. 
Which monster made it first and next a prey 
Plainly I view, and therefore speak, the stare 
E'en now approaching, whose conjmiction, free 
From all impediment and bar, briiigs on 
A season, in the which, one sent from God, 
(Five hundred, five, and ten, do mark him out) 
That foul one, and the accomplice of her guilt. 
The giant, both, shall slay. And if perchance 
My saying, dark as Themis or as Sphinx, 
Fail to persuade thee, (since like them it foils 
The intellect with blindness,) yet ere long 
Events shall be the Naiads,^ that will solve 

1 }Fas, and t> 7wt.\ " The beast that was and is not.* 
Rev.y xvii. 11. 

9 Hope not to scare OoeTs vengeance tcith a sop,] '* Let not 
him who hath occasioned the destruction of the church, that 
vessel which the serpent bralce, hope to appease the anger of 
the Deity by any outward acts of religions, or ratiier super 
stitions ceremony; snch as was that, in onr Poet*8 time, 
performed by a murderer at Florence, who imagined himself 
secure from vengeance, if he ate a sop of bread in wine upon 
the grave of the person murdered, within the space of nine 

* THat eoffie.] He pn^ostlcates that the Emperor of 
Germany wul not always continuq to submit to the usurpa- 
tions of the Pope, and foretells the coming of Henry VII. 
Duke of Lnxemburgh, signified by the numerical figures 
DVX ; or, as Lombard! supposes, of Can Grande della Scala, 
appointed the leader of the GhibelUne forces. It is unneces- 
sary to point out the imitation of the Apocalypse in the man- 
ner of this prophecy. 

Troya assigns reasons for applying the prediction to tTgut*^ 
clone della Faggiola, rather than to Henry or (Tan Grando. 
Veltro Allegorico di Dante, Ediz. 1826, p. 143. But see my 
note, H. 1. 103. 

* Tfie JCaxads.] Dante, it is observed, has been led into a 
mistake by a corruption in the text of Ovid*8 Metam., 1. vlL 
757, where he found— 

Carmina Naiades non intellecta priomm 

Instead of 

Carmina La'iades son intellecta prionun 

M It has been since corrected by Helnsius. 

Lorabaidi, after Bosa Mwanda, questions the proprletv of 
this emendation, and refers to Pansanias, where " the Nymphs'* 
are spoken of as expounders of oracles, for a vindication of the 
poet's accuracy. 


898 THE yISIO^ Ai-13 

This knotty riddle ; and no damage light* 

On flock or field. Take heed ; and as these words 

By me are utter'd, teach them even so 

To those who liye that life, whieh is a race 

To death : and when thou writest them, keep in mind 

Not to conceal how thou hast seen the plant, 

That twice* hath now been spoil'd. This whoso mhs. 

This whoso plucks, with blasphemy of deed 

Sins against God, who for his use alone 

Creating hallow'd it. For taste of tliis. 

In pain and in desire, five thousand years' 

And upward, the first soul did yearn for him 

Who punish'd in himself the fatal gust 

'* Thy reason slumbers, if it deem this height. 
And sunmiit thus inverted,* of the plant. 
Without due cause : and were not vainer thoughts, 
As Elsa's numbing waters,' to thy soul. 
And their fond pleasures had not dyed it dark 
As Pyramus the mulberry ; thou hadst seen,* 
In such momentous circumstance alone, 
God's equal justice morally implied 
In the forbidden tree. But since I mark thee, 
In understanding, harden*d into stone. 

Should the reader blame me for not departing firom the 
error of the orlglBal, (if error it be,) he may substitate 

Events shall be the (Edipns will solve, ttc 

^ JVo damage light.] 

Protlnns Aoniis immissa est bellna Thebls,* 

Cessit et exitio mnltis ; pecorique sibiqne 

RuricolB pavere feram. Ovid^ ibid, 

* Twice.] First bv the eagle and next by the giant. Sett 
the last Canto, v. 110, and v. 154. 

* Five thouaand yean.] That such was the opinion of the 
church, liombardl shows by a reference to Baronlas. Martyr. 
Rom., Dec 85. Anno a creatlone mundi, qnando a prindpAo 
creavit Dens eoBlum et ternun, qninqnies millesimo centesimc 
nonagesimo— Jesus Christos— KX)nceptn8. Edit. Ck)l. Agrlpp.. 
4to, leiO, p. 858. 

* Inverted.] The branches, nnlilEe those of other trees, 
spreading more widely the higher they rose. See the last 
Canto, V. 39. 

* Elsa*§ numhing watere.] The Elsa, a little stream, whieh 
flows into the Amo about twenty miles below Florence, Is 
said to possess a petrifying qnalitv. Fazio degll Ubertl, at the 
conclusion of Cap. vlfl 1. 3, of the Dittamondo, meiitkMta a 
snccessflil experiment he had himself made of the property 
here attributed to it. 

> T%ou hadtt teen.] This is obscure. Bat It weald seeoi as 
If he meant to Incaicata his fitvorite doctrlae of the iBVlo> 
lability of the empire, and of the care taken by Provkltoee is 

orotect it. 

74-«2 PURGATORY, Cimo XXXni. 899 

And, to tnat haidneas, spotted too and stain'd. 

So that thine eye is dazzled at my word ; 

I will, that, if not written, yet at least 

Painted thou take it in thee, for the cause, [palm.'* 

That one brings home his staff inwreath'd witt 

I thus : " As wax by seal, that changeth not 
Its impress, now is stamp'd my brain by thee. 
Bat wherefore soara thy wish'd*for speech so high 
Beyond my sight, that loses it the more. 
The more it strains to reach itf — ** To the end 
That thou mayst know," she answered straight, ** the 
That thou hast foUow'd ; and how far behind, [school. 
When following my discourse, its leaniing halts : 
And mayst behold your art,* from the divine 
As distant, as the disagreement is [orb." 

'Twixt earth and heaven's most high aAd rapturous 

** I not remember," I repUed, <*that e'er 
I was estranged from thee ; nor for such fault 
Doth conscience chide me." Smiling she retum'd : 

1 7%aC MM >rsiv« konu ki» Haf tmormOCd with palm.] 
'* For the same cause that the folwuTy rstnmiriji firora Pale»* 
tine, brings home his stafl^ or bonrdon, bound with palm,** 
that is, to show where he has been. 

Che si reca '1 bordon di palma cinto. 

*' It is to be understood,** says our Poet in the Vita Nuova, 
" that people, who go on the service of the Most High, are 

i:robably named in tiiree ways. They are named jm/smt*, 
nasmuch as thev go beyond sea, from whence they often 
bring back the palm. Inasmuch as they go to the house of 
Galicia, they are called pilgrims ; l>ecause the sepulchre of 
fit James was fhrther frcMn his country than that of any 
other Apostle. They are called Somei,*' (for which I know 
of no other word we have in English except Jtoamen,) " in 
asmnch as they go to Rome.** p. 275. 

** In regard to the word bourdm^ why it has been applied to 
a pUgiim*s staff, it is not easy to guess. I believe, however, 
diat this name has been given to such sort of staves, because 
pUvrims usually travel and perforai their pilgrimages on foot, 
didr staves serving them inslead of horses or mules, then 
called hmrJmiM and terdroes, by writers in the middle ages.** 
Jib'. Mines' a jyanslatum ofJouniili^g JUtwurirM^ Dissertation 
XV., by M. du Cange, p. 153, 4to ediu 

The wwd is thrice used by Chaucer in the Romaunt of the 

* Majfgt htkM your arL] The second persons, singular and 
plnn^ are here used intentionally by our author, the one 
referring to himself alone, the second to mankind in general. 
Compare Hell, xi. 107. But I will follow the example of 
Brvnck, who, in a note on a passage in the Pliiloetetes of 
Bophocles, ▼. 360, where a similar mstinction requires to be 
made, says that it would be ridiculous to mvlti|Hy Instaaeos 
bi a matter so well known. 

400 TH£ VISION. 93-196 

" If thou canst not remember, call to mind 

How lately thou haft drunk of Lethe's waye ; 

And, sm« as smoke doth indicate a flame, 

In that foigetfuhiess itself conclude 

Blame from thy alienated will incurred. 

From henceforth, verily, my words shall be 

As naked, as will suit them to appear 

In thy unpractised view.*' More sparkling uo«} 

And with retarded- course, the sun possessed 

The circle of mid-day, that varies still 

As the aspect varies of each several clime ; 

When, as one, sent m vaward of a troop 

For escort, pauses, if perchance he spy 

Vestige of somewhat strange and rare ; so paused 

The sevenfold band, arriving at the verge 

Of a dun umbrage hoar, such as is seen. 

Beneath green leaves and gloomy branches, oft 

To overbrow a bleak and alpine cliff. 

And, where they stood, before them, as it.seem'd 

I, Tigris and Euphrates' both, beheld 

Forth from one fountain issue ; and, like friends. 

Linger at parting. ** O enlightening beam ! 

O glory of our kind ! beseech thee say 

What water this, which, from one source derived 

Itself removes to distance from itself?" 

To such entreaty answer thus was made : 
" Entreat Matilda, that she teach thee this." 

And here, as one who clears himself of blame 
Imputed, the fair dame returned : " Of me 
He this and more hath Ieam*d ; and I am safe 
That Lethe's water hath not hid it from him." 

And Beatrice : " Some more pressing care. 
That oft the memory 'reaves, perchance hath made 
liis mind's eye dark. But lo, where Eunoe flows / 

> Sa panted.] Lombardi imagines that the seven nymplw 
who represent the four cardinal and the three evancelKal 
Vlrtoes, are made to stop at the verge of the shadoi beoinise 
rotirement is the friend of ever>- virtaons quality and sptrliuiil 

* /, THgrts and Euphrates.] 

Qoaqae caput rapido toUit cum Tigride magnns 

Euphrates, quos non diversis fontibns edit 

Persls. Luean^ PAare., lib. UL 898. 

Tigris et Euphrates uno se fonte resolvnnt. 

Boetlue de Qnuol. Philosophy lib. v. Metr 1 
'—— \h oltre end' esce 
0^2a medasimo fonte Eofirata e Tigie. 

Petrarea. &m. Mis yemlurs, Sf9 

ii>7-142. PUKGATORY, Canto XXXUl. 402 

Load thither ; and, as thoa art wont, revive 

His faintingr virtue." As a courteous spirit. 

That proflfers no excuses, but as soon 

As he hath token of another's will. 

Makes it his own ; when she had ta*en me, tliua 

The lovely maiden moved her on, and call'd 

To Statins, with an air most lady-like : 

** Come thou with him." Were further space allowed. 

Then, Reader ! miffht I sing, though but in part. 

That beverage, with whose sweetness I had ne'er 

Been sated. But, since all the leaves are full. 

Appointed for this second strain, mine art 

With warning bridle checks me. I retum'd 

From the most holy wave, regenerate. 

E'en as new plants renew'd^ with foliage new. 

Pure and made apt for mounting to the stars. 

» Renewed] 

'- come piante novelle 
Rinnovellate da novella nonda. 

Bo new this new-borne knight to battle new did rise. 

Spnuetf Fbery Qm«0iis, b. i. c. zi. st. 34. 

** Rinnovellate*' is another of those words which ChanceT 
in vain endeavored to introdaoe into oar lanfoage from th€ 
Italian, unless it be supposed that he rather borrowed it from 
the nench. '* Certes ones a yere at the lest way it Is lawlVil 
to ben hoaseled, for sothely ones a yere all thing! la Ihe < 
iKioveleD.** Th€ PtrKfirs Tnlt, 




iM, iff her, l e iiti w i of cotiiB doobti wkkh aiiae in Uc 

Hb gloiXf bj iHiOBe mii^ all things aze DMred, 
fieices the nmreiae,' and in <me part 
Shedi mare myimdmrf, cbewhc^ leas. In hecroi 
Thai lazgclkal of his Ugfat partake*, wm I, 
WitBEBi of thin^i^ which, to leiata agam, 
^inpaaKlli power of hfan who cwnfa fivm thfMcsp j 
For that, aa near approaching its dene. 
Oar nddleet » to andi depth afasorb'd, 
ThaiBMnionrcanMilbOow. NatUeaaaU, 
That m my tfao^gte I flf that aaered reafan 
Caidd iCon, riiaH now" be matter of my 

r,jL,h Man 

404 TEn-; VISION. IS-Ai^ 

Benign Apollo !^ this last labor aid ; 
And make me such a vessel of thy wortL, 
As thy own laurel claims, of me beloved. 
Thus far* hath one of steep Pamasans* brows 
Sufficed me ; henceforth, there is need of both 
For my remainmg enterprise. Do thou' 
Enter into my bosom, and there breathe 
So, as when Marsyas* by thy hand was dra^g'd 
Forth from his limbs, unsheathed. O power divhar 
If thou to me of thine impart so mnch, 
That of that happy realm the shadow'd form 
Traced in my thoughts I may set forth to view; 
Thou shalt behold me of thy favor'd tree 
Come to the foot, and crown myself with leaverf 
For t) that honor thou, and my high theme 
Will fit me. If but seldom, mighty Sire ! 
To grace his triumph, gathers thence a wreath 
Cassar, or bard,* (more shame for human wills 
Depraved,) joy to the Delphic god must spring 

1 Benign JlpoUo.] Chancer has imitated this invoeatfoa 
rery closely, at the beginning of the Third Booke of Fame 

If, divine vertue, thoa 
Wilt helpe me to shewe now 
That in my head ymarked is, 

Than shalt see me go as blive 
Unto the next lanrer I see. 
And kisse it, for it is thy tree. 
Now entre diou my breast anone. 

' TTkutfar,'] He appears to mean nothing more than that 
this part of his poem will require a greater exertion of his 
powers than the former. 

* Do thou.] Make me thine instmment ; and, throng ■«, 
utter such soond as when thoa didst contend with Ble?- 

* Martms.] Ovid, Met, lib. vl. fab. 7. Compara Boeeae- 
cio. 11 Filoeopo., lib. v. p. S5. v. ii. Edlz. Fir. 1733. »Ectt 
nel mio petto entri,** Stcj^** May he enter my bosoai, mad M 
my voice soond Uks his own, when he made that daiiag I 
tal deserve to come forth unsheathed fkom his limbs.*' 

* Grsfor, or bard] So Petrarch, Son. Par. Prima 

Arbor vittoriosa trionfkle, 
Onor d* impenuiori e di poeti. 

AndFrezzl. H Qnadilr., lib. iii. cap. 14. 

— alloro, 
Che imperatorl e' poeti corona. 

And Spenser. F. Q^ b. i. e. 1, st. 0. 

The laurel, meed of mighty eonqiisio«z% 
And poets sase. 

M-SL PARADISE, Canto I. i05 

From the Penetan foliage, when one breast 
Is with such thiist inspired. From a small spark' 
Great flame hath risen : after me, perchance, 
Others with better voice may pray, and gain. 
From the CynfaflBan city, answer kind. 

Through divers passages, the world's bright lamp 
Rises to mortals ; but tlurough that' which joins 
Four circles with the threefold cross, in best 
Course, and in happiest constellation* set, 
He comes ; and, to the worldly wax, best gives 
Its temper and impression. Momiiig there,^ 
Here eve was well nigh by such passage made ; 
And whiteness had o'erspread that hemisphere, 
Blackness the other part ; when to the Idt* 
I saw Beatrice tnm*d, and on the sun 
Gazing, as never eagle fix*d his ken. 
As from the first a second beam' is wont 
To issue, and reflected upwards rise, 
Even as a pilgrim bent on his return ; 
So of her act, that through the eyesight passed 
Into my fancy, mine was form'd : and straighti 
Beyond our mortal wont, I flx'd mine eyes 
Upon the sun. Much is allowed us there, 
, , — . — 

1 f)vtn a tnuUl spark.] 

voWdv t' 8ptt vvp i^ ivdf 

Xvipfiaroi ivdopdv Atcruatv tXav. 

Upon the mountain from one spark hath leapt 
The fire, that hath a mighty forest barn*d. 

Pindar, Pytk, lU. 07. 

* T%roMgk that] ** Where the fonr circles, the horizon, the 
lodlac, the equator, and the equinoctial colure join ; the last 
three intersecting each other so as to form three crosses, as 
may be seen in the armillary sphere.'* 

* In happiest constellation.] Aries. Some understand the 
planet Veaos by the " miglior Stella." 

* Morning there.] It was morning where he then was, and 
about eventide on the earth. 

* To the left] Being in the opposite hemisphere to oai% 
Beatrice, that she may behold the rising sun, turns herself to 
the left. 

* Jis from the first a second beam.] " Like a reflected sun 
beam,** which he compares to a pilgrim hastening heme* 

Ne slmll tanto mai raggio secondo 

Dal primo asci. FUieaja, canz. zv. st. 4. 

fflcat vir in peregrinatione constltntus, omni studio, om 
nique conata domum redire festinat, ac retrorsam non respl 
at aed ad domum, quam reliquerat, reverti desiderat. JSlberiet 


406 THE VISION. 54-7 

That liere exceeds our power ; thanks to the idaae 
Made' for the dwellmg of the human kmd 

I suffered it not long ; and yet so long. 
That I beheld it bickering sparks around, * 
As iron that comes boiling from the fire.^ 
And suddenly upon the day appeared* 
A day new-risen ; as he, who hath the power. 
Had with another sun bedeck'd the sky. 

Her eyes fast fix*d on the eternal wheels.* 
Beatrice stood unmoved ; and I with ken 
Fix'd upon her, from upward gaze reraoyed, 
At her aspect, such inwardly became 
As Glaucus,' when he tasted of the herb 
That made him peer among the ocean gods : 
Words may not tell of that transhuman change ; 
And therefore let th^ example serve, though we&k. 
For those whom grace hath better proof in store. 

1 Made.] And therefore best adapted, says Vontmri, to the 
food temperament and vigor of the hnman body and Its fiie* 
alties. The Poet speaks of the tenestrial paradise where he 
Chen was. 

s ^s iron that comes boiling from the fire.} Ardentem, et 
scintillas emittentem, ac si ferrum cam de fivnace trahitnr 
Jilherici Fisio, $ 5. This simile is repeated, ^ 16. 

So Hilton. P. L., b. iii. 594. 

As glowing iron with fire. 

* Upon the day appear'd.] 

• If the heaven had ywonne 

All new of God another sunne. 

CkauecTf A>9f Booke ef Fhwu, 

E par ch* agglanga an altro sole al ciolo. 

j9rM9t0, O. K, c X. St. 109. 

Ed ecco nn Instro lampeggiar d' iutomo 
Che sole a sole agglunse e giorno a glorco. 

MarinOf A^nu., c zi. st. 87. 

Unando a paro col sol ma piu Incente 

L*angelo gli appari snll* (Hiiente. Tfawno, O, Zr., c. 1. 

— — seems another mom 

Bis*n on mid-noon. MUUm, P, Z.., b. v. 31L 

C?ampare Euripides. Ion. 1550. 'AyOifAiov vftfsnM«oy« 

4 Eternal uheeU.] The heavens, eternal, and always cir- 

s A9 OlameuM.] Ovid., Met., lib. ziii. fab. 9. Plato, la the 
tenth book of the Republic, makes a very noble compaiisoa 
fnok Glaucns, but applies it dlfierently. Edit Bipont, voL 
vii. p. 317. Berkeley appears not to have been aware m the 
passage, when he says that '^Proclns compares the sool, in 
her deseent, Investea with growing prejaoiees, to Glanena 
diving to the botunn of the sea, and there contracting divers 
eoats of sea*weed, coral, and shells, which stick close to him. 
and conceal his true shape ** Sin§., Ed. 1744« p. 151. 

71-103 PARADISE, Canto I. 407 

If' I were only what thoa didst create, 
Then newly, hove ! by whom the heaven is ruled ; 
Thou know^st, who by thy light didst bear me up. 
When as the wheel which thou dost ever g^de. 
Desired Spirit ! with its harmony,' 
Temper'd of thee and measured, charm'd mine ear 
Then seem'd to me so much of heaven* to blaze 
With the sun's flame, that rain or flood ne'er made 
A lake so broad. The newness of the sound. 
And that great light, inflamed me with desire. 
Keener than e'er was felt, to know their cause. 

Whence she, who saw me, clearly as myself. 
To calm my troubled mind, before I ask'd, 
Open'd her lips, and gracious thus began : 
" With false imagination thou thyself 
Makest dull ; so that thou seest not the thing, 
Which thou hadst seen, had that been shaken off 
Thou art not on the earth as thou believest ; 
For lightning, scaped from its own proper place. 
Ne'er ran, as thou hast hither now rotum'd." 

Although divested of my first-raised doubt 
By those brief words accompanied with smiles, 
Yet in new doubt was I entangled more. 
And said : << Already satisfied, I rest 
From admiration deep ; but now admire 
How I above those lighter bodies rise." 

Whence, after utterance of a piteous sigh, 
She towards me bent her eyes, with such d look. 
As on her phrensied child a mother casts ; 
Then thus began : " Among themselves all things 
Have order ; and from hence the form,^ which makes 
The universe resemble God. In this 

1 Jf.] **Thoii, O divine Spirit, Icnowest whether I had not 
riaen above my human nature, and were not merely such as 
ttiou hadst then formed me.** 

* Harmony.] The harmony of the spheres. 

And after that the melodie herd he 
That Cometh of thillce speris thryis three, 
That Welles of musike ben and melodie 
In this world here, and cause of harmonie. 

Chaueevt The AatenMe of Fnlea. 

— — In their motion harmony divine 
So smooths her charming tones, that 6od*8 own ear 
Ustens delighted. MUtont P. L^ b. v. 0S7. 

* 8o much of keaven.] The sphere of fire, as Lombardi well 
nmlains it. 

* Firom kenee tke form.] This order it is, that gives to the 
j tmiverse the form of unity, and therefore of resemblance to 


406 TH£ VISION. Ig»-1» 

The higher creaturea see the printed sttifw 
Of that eternal worth, which is the end 
Whither the line is drawn*^ All natures lean. 
In this their order, diversely ; some more, 
Some less approaching to their primal source. 
Thus they to different havens are moved on 
Through the vast sea of being, and each one 
With instinct given, that bean it in its coune : 
This to the lunar sphere directs the fire ; 
This moves the hearts of mortal animals ; 
This the brute earth together knits, and binds. 
Nor only creatures, void of intellect. 
Are aim'd at by this bow ; but even tI)ose, 
That have intelligence and love, are pierced. 
That Providence, who so well orders all, 
With her own light makes ever calm the heaven,' 
In which the substance, that hath greatest speed,' 
Is tum'd : and thither now, as to our seat 
Predestined, we are carried by the force 
Of that strong cord, that never looses dart 
But at fair aim and glad. Yet is it true. 
That as, oft-times, but ill accords the form 
To the design of Bxt, through sluggishness* 

1 neither the line i» draton.] All things, as they havif 
their beginaing from the Supreme Being, so are they referred 
to Him again. 

> The heaven.^ The empyrean, which is always motion 

* The subetaneey that hath greatest speed.] The primnn 

* JUrovg-h slnggishnesa,] 

Perch* a risponder la materia A sorda. 
80 Filicaja, canz. vi. st 9. 

Ferche a risponder la discordia k sorda. 

" The workman hath in his heart a murpose, he caxrieth fa 
mind the whole form which his work ahoQld have ; then 
wanteth not in him skill and desire to bring his labor to the 
best effect; only the matter, which he hath to wofk on, Is 
unfhimable." Hooker's Reel. Polity^ b. v. $ 9. 

Oar Poet, in his De Monarchic, has expressed the same 
thought more fUUy. " Sciendum, &c.," lib. U. p. 115. ** We 
most know, that as art Is found in a triple oegree. In the 
mind that is (^ the artist, in the Instrument, and in the 
matter formed by art, so we may contemplate nature alio in 
% triple degree. For nature is in the mind of the first mover, 
who is Ckid ; then in heaven, as in an instrument, by means 
of which the slmHitude-of the eternal goodness is imfolded 
In vaiiable matter; and, as the artist being perfect, and the 
instrument in the best order, if there is any fault in the fonn 
of art, it is to be imputed only to the matter; so, dnee God 
reaches to the end 01 perfection, and his instrument, which 
'B heaven, is not in any wise deficient of due porfectloiu (a» 

ISG-i37 PARADISE, Cantc II. 409 

Of imreplyiiig matter ; bo this course^ 
Is sometimes quitted by the creature, who 
Hath power, directed thus, to bend elsewhexe ; 
As from a cloud the fire is seen to fall. 
From its original impulse warp'd, to earth. 
By vicious fondness. Thou no more admire 
Thy soaring, (if I rightly deem,) than lapse 
Of torrent downwards from a mountain's height 
There would' in thee for wonder be more cause, 
If, free of hinderance, thou hadst stay'd below. 
As living fire unmoved upon the earth." 
So s&id, she tum*d toward the heaven her face. 



Dante and his celestial guide enter the moon. The cause of 
the spots or shadows, which appear in that body, is ex- 
plained to him. 

AUi ye, who in small bark' have following saii*d, 
Eager to listen, on the adventurous track 
Of my proud keel, that smging cuts her way. 
Backward return with speed, and your own shores 
Revisit ; nor put out to open sea. 
Where losing me, perchance ye may remain 
Bewilder'd in deep maze. The way I pass. 
Ne'er yet was run : Minerva breathes the gale ; 
Apollo guides me ; and another Nine, 

appears from what we know by Dhllosophy concerning heav- 
en) it remaineth that whatever fault is in inferior things, is a 
fault of the matter worlEed on, and clean beside the intention 
of God and of heaven.*' 

I TTHs €9urte.'] Some beings, abusing the liberty ^ven 
Ihem by God, are repugnant to the order established by Him. 

* T^ere wnUd.] Hence, perhaps, Milton : 

— — in our proper motion we ascend 
Up to our native seat: descent and fall 
To us were adverse. P. L., b. 11. v. 77. 

• In amatt hark,'\ 

Con hi baichetta mia cantando in rima. 

Pulci, Mvrg, Magg^ c. xzvili 

lo me n*andib eon la barchetta mia, 

Quanlo Tacqua comp(nrta nn picciol legna Ibid 

Say, shall my little bark attendant snll 1 

^ Pfl!P0, £««a|r (m JWnn, Ep. .> 

410 THE VISION. 10 46 

To my rapt sight, the arctic beams reveal 
Ye other few who have outstretch'd the necL 
Timely for food of angels, on which here 
They live, yet never know satiety ; 
Through the deep brine ye fearless may put out 
Your vessel ; marking well the furrow broad 
Before you in the wave, that on both sides 
Equal returns. Those, glorious, who passed o'er 
To Colchos, wonder'd not as ye will do. 
When they saw Jason following the plough. 

The in create perpetual thiret,* that draws 
Toward the reahn of Grod's own form, bore us 
Swift almost as the heaven ye behold. 

Beatrice upward gazed, and I on her ; 
And in such space as on the notch a dart 
Is placed, then loosen'd flies, I saw myself 
Arrived, where wondrous thing engaged my sight 
Whence she, to whom no care of mine was hid, 
Turning to me, with aspect glad as fair, 
Bespake me : ** Gratefully direct thy mind 
To God, through whom to this first star' we comri " 

Meseem'd as if a cloud had covered us. 
Translucent, solid, firm, and polish'd bright. 
Like adamant, which the sun's beam had smit. 
Within itself the ever-during pearl 
Received us ; as the wave a ray of light 
Receives, and rests unbroken. If I then 
Was of corporeal frame, and it transcend 
Our weaker thought, how one dimension thus 
Another could endure, which needs must be 
If body enter body ; how much more 
Must the desire inflame us to behold 
That essence, which discovers by what means 
God and our nature join'd ! There will be seen 
That, which we hold through faith ; not shown by 
But in itself intelligibly plain, [proof. 

E'en as the truth* that man at first believes. 

1 The inereate perpetual thirttl The desire of celestial 
^eatltade, natural to the socl. 

* This fitBt «tar.l The moon. 

* JETm M the tnuk.^ "Like a tmlh, that does not need 
iemonstmtlon, but is self-evident.*' Thus Plato, at the coo- 
daslon of the Sixth Book of the Republic, lays down fboff 
principles of information in the human mind: ** 1st, iBtoltkn 
of self-evident truth, v6^9^i\ Sid, demonstration by wmioniBg, 
iMfvMfl ; 3d, belief en testimony, rclvTti\ 4th, probaliUity, et 

;7-7i» PARADISE, Canto II. 411 

I answerM : " Lady ! I with thougrhta dev ;m, 
Such as I best can frame, give thanks to hini) 
Who hath removed me from the mortal world. 
But tell, I pray thee, whence the gloomy spots 
Upon this body, which below on earth 
Give rise to talk of Cain^ in fabling quaint?" 

She somewhat smiled, then spake : " If mortals en 
In their opinion, when the key of sense 
Unlocks not, surely wonder's weapon keen 
Ou^ht not to pierce thee : since thou find'st, Cse wing 
Of reason to pursue the senses' flight 
Are short But what thy own thought is, declare.'* 

Then I : ** What various here ab<nre appears. 
Is caused, I deem, by bodies dense or rare."* 

She then resumed : ** Thou certainly wilt see 
In falsehood thy belief o'erwhelm'd, if well 
Thou listen to the arguments which I 
Shall bring to face it. The eighth sphere displays 
Numberless lights,* the which, in kind and size. 
May be rema»'d of different aspects : 
If rare or dense of that were cause alone. 
One smgle virtue then would be in all ; 
Alike distributed, or more, or less. 
Different virtues needs must be the fruits 

conjecture, dKaata,^* I cannot resist adding a passage to the 
like effect from Hooker's Ecclesiastical Polity, b.ll. $7. ''The 
truth is, that the mind of man desireth evermore to know 
the truth, according to the most infallible certainty which 
the nature of things can yield. The greatest assurance 
generally with all men. Is that which we have by plain as- 
pect and intuitive beholding. Where we cannot attain unto 
this, there what appeareth to be true, by strong and invinci- 
ble demonstration, such as wherein it is not by any way 
possible to be deceived, thereunto the mind doth neces- 
sarily assent, neither is it in the choice thereof to do other 
wise. And in case these both do fail, then which way 
greatest probability leadeth, thither the mind doth evermoie 

3 Cam.] Compare Hell, Canto zx. J23, and note. 

* Sif bodies dense or rare.] Lombard! observes, that the 
opinion respecting the spots in the moon, wliich Dante repre- 
nents himself as here yielding to the arguments of Beatrice 
Is professed by our author in the Convito, so that we may 
eonciude that work to have been composed before this por- 
tion of the Dlvins Commedia. " The shadow in the moon 
b nothing else but the rarity of its body, which hinders the 
rays of the sun fh>m terminating and being reflected, as in 
other parts of it." P. 70. 

* Jfmberless lighu.] The fixed stars, which (^ifler lioth l^ 
bulknnd splendor. 

412 THE VISION. 71-itA 

Df formal principles ; and these, save one,- 

Will by thy reasoning be destroy'd. Beside. 

If rarity weie of that dusk the cause, 

Which thou inquirest, either in some part 

That planet must throughout be void, nor fed 

With its own matter; or, as bodies share 

Their fat and leanness, in like manner this 

Must in its volume change the leaves.' The ilnit^ 

If it were true, had through the sun's eclipse 

Been manifested, by transparency 

Of light, as through aught rare beside effused 

But this is not. Therefore remains to see 

The other cause : and, if the other fall. 

Erroneous eo must prove what seem'd to thee. 

If not from side to side this rarity 

Pass through, there needs must be a limit, whence 

its contrary no farther lets it pass. 

And hence the beam, that from without procef As, 

Must be pour'd back ; as color comes, through glass 

Reflected, which behind it lead conceals. 

Now wilt thou say, that there of murkier hue. 

Than in the other part, the ray is shown, 

By being thence refracted farther back. 

From this perplexity will free thee soon 

Experience, if thereof thou trial make, 

The fountain whence your arts derive their streams 

Three mirrors shalt thou take, and two remove 

From thee alike ; and more remote the third. 

Betwixt the former pair, shall meet thine eyes * 

Then turn'd toward them, cause behind thy back 

A light to stand, that on the tliree shall shine, 

And thus reflected come to thee from all. 

Though that, beheld most distant, do not stretch 

A space so ample, yet in brightness thou 

Wilt own- it equalling the rest But now, 

1 Save one.] *' Except that principle of rarity and denx;- 
ness which thon hast assigned." By ** formal princiiriek,** 
prineijtffornuUi, are meant " constittient or essential causes.** 

Milton, In imitation of this passage, introduces the an^ 
arguing with Adam respecting the causes of the spcrts on ue 
moon. But, as « late French translator of the Paradise, M 
Artand, well remarks, his reasoning is physical ; that of Danle 
;tartly metaphysical and partly theologic 

Whence in her visaee round those spots, unpniged 
Vapors not yet into her substance turn*d. 

Maton, P. Z., b. V 4001 

* Change the leaves.] Would, like leave J of parchment, br 
^Mker in some part than others. 

(Ofr-199 PARADISE, Canto II. 418 

Ab under snow the ground, if the warm lay 
Smites it, remains dismantled of the hue 
And cold, that cover'd it before ; so thee 
Dismantled in thy mind, I will inform 
With light so lively, that the tremulous beam 
Shall quiver where it falls. Within the heaven, 
Where peace divine inhabits, circles round 
A body, in whose virtue lies the being 
Of all that it contains. The following heaven, 
That hath so many lights, this being divides, 
Through different essences, from it distinct. 
And yet contained within it. The other orbs 
Their separate distinctions variously 
Dispose, for their own seed and produce apt. 
Thus do these organs of the world proceed, 
As thou beholdest now, from step to step ; 
Their influences from above deriving. 
And thence transmitting downwards. Mark me well 
How through this passage to the truth I ford. 
The truth thou lovest ; that thou henceforth, alone. 
Mayst know to keep the shallows, safe, untold 
" The virtue and motion of the sacred orbs, 
As mallet by the workman's hand, must needs 
By blessed movers' be inspired. This heaven,' 
Made beauteous by so many luminaries, 
From the deep spirit,* that moves its circling sphere, 
Its image takes and impress as a seal : 
And as the soul, that dwells within your dust. 
Through members different, yet together form'd, 
In different powexB resolves itself; e'en so 
The intellectual efficacy unfolds 
Its goodness multiplied throughout the stare ; 
On its own unity revolving still. 
Different virtue* compact different 

1 WUhin the heaven.] According to our Poet's system, 
there aro ten heavens. The heaven, " where peace divine 
Inhabits,** is the empyrean ; the body witUn it, that " circles 
loand,** is the primnm mobile ; ** the following heaven," that 
•f the fixed stars ; and *' the other orbs,*' the seven lower 
heavens, are Saturn, Jupiter, Mars, the Sun, Venus, Mercurv 
and the Moon. Thus Milton, P. L., b. lii. 481 : 

They pass the planets seven, and pass the flx*d, ■ 
And that crystalline sphere whose balance welgh^ - 
The trepidation talk*d, and that first moved. 

s Bf bUsted movers,] By angels. 

s 7%io h»aven.\ The heaven of fixed stars. 

* The deep 'spirit.] ?'he moving angel. 

* Diferent virtue.] "There is one glory of the sun, ftod 
another glory of the moon, anu another glory of the start > (hi 



iU THE VISION 140-14B 

Makes with the precious body it enlivens. 

With which it knits, as life in you is knit 

From its original nature full of joy. 

The virtue mingled' tlirough the body shines. 

As joy through pupil of the living eye. 

From hence proceeds that which from light to lifjlit 

Seems dUlerent, and not from dense or rare. 

This is the formal cause, that generates. 

Proportioned to its power, the dusk or clear.'' 




In ti.e moon Dante meets with Ficcarda, the sister of Forese, 
who tells hUn that this planet is allotted to those, who^ 
after having made profession of chastity and a reliciofbi 
life, had been compelled to violate their vows ; and she 
then points oat to him the spirit of the Empress Costanxa. 

That sun,* which erst with love my bosom warm'di 
Had of fair truth unveil*d the sweet aspect, 
By proof of right, and of the false reproof ; 
And I, to own myself convinced and free 
Of doubt, as much as needed, raised my head 
Erect for speech. But soon a sight appeared. 
Which, so intent to mark it, held me fiz*d. 
That of confession I no longer thought 

As through translucent and smooth glass, or wavo 
Clesur and unmoved, and flowing not so deep 
As that its bed is dark, the shape returns 
So faint of our impicttured lineaments. 
That, on white forehead set, a pearl as stnmg 
Comes to the eye ; such saw I many a face, 
All stretch'd to speak ; from whence I straigLt con* 
Delusion* opposite to that, which raised, [ceived. 
Between the man and fountain, amorous flame. 

one star difiereth from another star in glory.*' 1 Cor., xv 41 
The words are nearly Plato*a, whom St. Paul seems to 
have had in view thronghoat this part of his axnunent* 
fAta ith [Swdfiis} ^\tov' ftla 6^^ osXHvnf ftla #^, rflv 
wd^Tuv SoTpwv x. r. >• Epinomis., Ed. Bip. v. Iz. p. 963. 

1 The vtrtite m*nfled.\ Virg. JBn., lib. tL 794. 

Principio coelnm, fcc 

* That tvn.J Beatrice. 

* Delusum.] ** An error the contraiy to that Of 
oecause he mistook a shadow for a iulMtiuca ; I, a 
^ a shadow." 

18-410. PAKADISE, Canto 71 415 

Sndden, as I perceived them, deeming these 
Reflected semblances, to see of whom 
They were, I turu'd mine eyes, and nothing saw ; 
Then tum'd them back, directed on the light 
Of my sweet guide, who, smiling, shot for£ beams 
From her celestial eyes. " Wonder not thou,*' 
She cried, " at this my smiling, when I see 
Thy childish judgment ; smce not yet on truth 
It rests the foot, but, as it still is wont. 
Makes thee fall back in unsound vacancy. 
True substances are these, which thou behold'st, 
Hither through failure of their vow exiled. 
But speak thou with them ; listen, and believe. 
That the true light, which fills them with desire. 
Permits not from its beams their feet to stray." 

Straight to the shadow, which for converse seem'd 
Most earnest, I addressed me ; and began. 
As one by over-eagerness perplex'd: 
'< O spirit, bom for joy ! who in the rays 
Of life eternal, of that sweetness know'st 
The flavor, which, not tasted, passes far 
All apprehension ; me it well would please, 
If thou wouldst tell me of thy name, and this 
Your station here.*' Whence she with kindness promptf 
And eyes glistering with smiles: '< Our charity, 
To any wish by jiutice introduced, 
Bars not the door ; no more than she above. 
Who would have all her court be like herself. 
I was a virgin sister in the earth : 
And if thy mind observe me well, this form. 
With such addition graced of loveliness. 
Will not conceal me long ; but thou wilt know 
Piccarda,^ in the tardiest sphere thus placed, 
Here 'mid these other blessed also blest. 
Our hearts, whose high afiections bum alone 
With pleasure from the Holy Spirit conceived. 
Admitted to his order, dwell in joy. 
And this condition, which appears so low. 
Is for this cause assign'd us, that our vows 
Were, in some part, neglected and made void." 

Whence I to her repUed : << Something divine 
Beams in your countenances wondrous fair ; 
From former knowledge quite transmuting you. 

> Pieearda.] The sister of Corso Donati, and of Fraese, 
whom we have seen in the Purgatory, Canto xzili. Petrarob 
itas been sappond to aUade to th*t lady la his Triumpb of 
Chastity, ▼. IfiT), t^c. 


416 THE VISION. 81-100 

Therefore to recollect was I so slow. 
But what thou sayst hath to my memory 
Given now such aid, that to retrace your forms 
Is easier. Yet inform me, ye, who here 
Are happy ; long ye for a higher place, 
More to behold, and more in love to dwell 7" 

She with those other spirits gently smiled ; 
Then answer'd with such gladness, that she seera'd 
With love's first flame to glow : " Brother ! our wiU 
Is, in composure, settled by the power 
Of charity, who makes us will alone 
What we possess, and naught beyond desire ; 
If we should wish to be exalted more. 
Then must our wishes jar with the high will 
Of him, who sets us here ; which in these orbe 
Thou wilt confess not possible, if here 
To be in charity must needs befall. 
And if her nature well thou contemplate. 
Rather it is inherent in this state 
Of blessedness, to keep ourselves within 
The divine will, by which our wills with his 
Are one. So that as we, from step to step, 
Are placed throughout this kingdom, pleases all. 
Even as our King, who in us plants his will ; 
And in his will is our tranquillity : 
It is the mighty ocean, whither tends 
Whatever it creates and nature makes.*' 

Then saw I clearly how each spot in heaveu 
Is Paradise, though with like gracious dew 
The supreme virtue shower not over all. 

But as it chances, if one sort of food 
Hath satiated, and of another still 
The appetite remains, that this is ask'd. 
And thanks for that retum'd ; e'en so did I, 
In word and motion, bent from her to learn 
What web it was,' through which she had not drowii 
The shuttle to its point. She thus began : 
« Exalted worth and perfectness of life 
The Lady* higher up inslirine in heaven, 
By whose pure laws upon your nether earth 

1 Jflua veb it toot J "What vow of religions life It WM 
that she had been hindered from completing, had been com 
pelled to break.** 

* Tkg Laiw.] Bt. Clare, the fbnndress of the order called 
%(ter her* She was bora of opulent and noble parents at 
Aflrisl In 1103, anil died In 1S53. Bee Biogr. Unlv^ t L p- SIB 
9vo. Paris, 1813. 

lOl-lsl. PARADISE. Canto 111 4X7 

The robe and veil. they wear; to that intent, 
That e'en till death they may keep watch, or slecpi 
With their great bridegroomi who accepts each vow, 
Which to his gracious pleasure love conforms. 
I from the world, to follow her, when young 
Escaped ; and, in her vesture mantling me. 
Made promise of the way her sect enjoins. 
Thereafter men, for ill than good more apt, 
Forth snatch*d me from the pleasant cloister's pale^ 
God knows' how, after that, my life was framed. 
This other splendid shape, which thou behold*st . 
At my right side, bummg with all the light 
Of this our orb, what of myself I tell 
May to herself apply. From her, like me 
A sister, with like violence were torn 
The saintly folds, that shaded her fair brows. 
E*en when she to the world again was brought 
In spite of her own will and better wont. 
Yet not for that the bosom's inward veil 
Did she renounce. This is the luminary 
Of mighty Constance,' who from that loud blast, 

^ Ood knows.] Rodolfo da Tossignano, Hist Semph. Belig. 
P. i. p. 138, as cited by^ Lombaxdi, relates the following le- 
gend of Piccarda:— *'Her brother Corso, inflamed with rage 
against his virgin sister, having joined with him Farinata, 
an infiunons anassin, and twelve other abandoned ruffians, 
entered the monastery by a ladder, and carried away his 
sister forcibly to his own honse ; and then tearing off her 
religions habit, compelled her to go in a secular garment to 
her nuptials. Before the spouse of Christ came together 
with her new husband, she knelt down before a crucinx and 
recommended her virginity to Christ. Soon after her whole 
body was smitten with leprosy, so as to strike grief and 
horror into the beholden ; and thus in a few days, tlirough 
the divine disposal, she passed with a palm of virginity tu 
the Lord." Perhaps, adds the worthy Franciscan, oar Poet 
not being able to certify himself entirely of this occurrence, 
has chosen to pass it ovor diseraetly, by making Piccards 
say — 

God knows how, after that, my life was framed. 

s Conttamee.] Daughter of Rufi^eri, king of Sicily, who 
being taken by force out of a monastery where she had pro- 
fessed, was married to the Emperor Henry VI. and by him 
was mother to Frederick U. She was fifty years old or mora 
%t the time, and ''because it was not credited tliat she could 
have a child at that age, she was delivered in a pavilion, and 
it was given out that any lady who pleased was at Ubeity 
to see her. Many came, and saw her; and the BUs]Hcion 
ceased.** Rieordano MeUaspina in Muratori^ Rer, It. Sar^t^ 
X, viii. p. 939 ; and O. Fillani, in the same words, MuL, lib. v. 
c 10. 

llie fVench translator above-mentioned speaks of her hav 
itt^ poisoned her husband. The death of Henry VI. is re 

418 THE VISION. iai-18 

Which blew the second* over Suabia's reahn. 
That power produced, which was the thurd and last 

She ceased from further talk, and then began 
" Ave Maria" singing; and with that song 
Vanished, as heavy substance through deep wsvo 

Mine eye, that, far as it was capable. 
Pursued her, when in dimness she was lost, 
Tum'd to the mark where greater want impeli'd. 
And bent on Beatrice all its gaze. 
But she, as lightning, beam'd upon my looks ; 
So that the sight sustam'd it not at first. 
Whence I to question her became less prompL 



While they still continue in the moon, Beatrice removes cer 
tain doubts which Dante had conceived respecting the 
place assigned to the blessed, and respecting the will al>> 
solnte or conditional. He inquires whether it is possible to 
make satisfiustion for a vow broken. 

Between two kinds of food,^ both equally 
Remote and tempting, first a man might die 
Of hunger, ere he one could freely choose. 
E'en so would stand a lamb between the maw 
Of two fierce wolves, in dread of both alike : 
E'en so between two deer^ a dog would stand. 
Wherefore, if I was silent, fault nor praise 
I to myself impute ; by equal doubts 
Held in suspense ; since of necessity 

corded in the Chronicon Sicillae, by an anonymous writerp 
(Mnratori, t. x.) but not a word of his having been poisoned 
by Constance ; and Ricordano Malaspina even mentions hef 
decease as happening before that of her husband, Henry V., 
for so this author, with some others, terms him. 

*■ The auond.] Henry VI^ «on of FVederick I., was the 
second emperor of the house ol Suabia? and his son Fred- 
erick II. *' the third and last** 

* Betwteu two kindt of food.] " Si allqua dico sunt penitos 
Bqnalla, non magis movetor homo ad unum qnam ad allnd; 
gicut fomelicns, si habet cibum lequaliter appetibilem in dBt 
versis partibus, ot secundum eqnalem distantiam, aon magiel 
movetnr ad unum qnam ad alteram.** 77u»ma$ AfmmoB, 
Summ Thtolog^ 1» \i^ Partis. Questio. xia« Art. vi 

* BeUeun two door.} 

Tigris ut, auditis, dlversft valle duorum, 
Extlmalata fame, mugitibus armentonim, 
Neselt ntriy potius mat, et mere ardet ntroqne 

Ovid, JIfetam., lib. v IfiTk 

10-31. PARADISE, Canto IV. 41 ji 

[t bappen'd. Silent was I, yet desire 
Was painted in my looks; and thus I sp&ke 
My wish more earnestly than language could. 

As Daniel,^ when the haughty kmg he freed 
From ire, that spurr'd him on to deeds unjust 
And violent ; so did Beatrice then. 

" Well I discern," she thus her words addies'dt 
« How thou art drawn by each of these desires ;^ 
80 that thy anxious thoi^[[ht is in itself 
Bound up and stifled, nor breathes freely fortli 
Thou arguest : if the good intent remain ; 
What reason that an<Sher's violence 
Should stint the measure of my fair desert 7 

" Cause too thou find'st for doubt, in that it seems 
That spirits to the stars, as Plato' deem'd. 
Return. These are the questions which thy will 
Urge equally ; and therefore I, the first. 
Of that* will treat which hath the more of gall.* 
Of seraphim* he who is most enskied, 
Moses and Samuel, and either John, 
Choose which thou wilt, nor even Mary's self. 
Have not in any other heaven their seats. 

1 Daniel.] See Daniel, ii. Beatrice did for Dante what 
Daniel did for NebQchadneuar, when he freed the king from 
the uncertainty respecting his dream, which had eniai^d 
faim ac^st the Chaldeans. Lombardl conjectures that " Fe 
Mi Beatrice" should be read, instead of '^Fessi Beatrice;" 
and his conjecture has since been confirmed by the Monte 

> Bf each of these desires.} His desire to have each of the 
doubts, which Beatrice mentions, resolved. 

> Plato.] Uvaiijcas 6i x. r. A. Plato, Timcus, v.ix. p. 396 
Edit. Blp. " The Creator, when he had framed the universe, 
distributed to the stars an equal number of souls, appointing 
to each soul its several star." 

* Of that] Plato*s opinion. 

» Which hath the more of gall.] Which is the more dan- 

" Of Seraphim.] " He among the Seraphim who is most 
nearly united with God, Moses, Samuel, and both the Johns, 
the Baptist and the Evangelist, dwell not in any other heaven 
than do those spirits whom thou hast j:ist beheld; nor does 
even the blessed Virgin herself dwell in any other: nor is 
their existence either longer or shorter than that of these 
spirits." She first resolves his doubt whether souls do not 
return to theLr own stars, as he had read in the Timeos of 
Plato. Angels, then, and beatified spirits, she declares, dwell 
all and eternally together, only parteJdng more or less of the 
divine glory, In the empyrean ; although, in condescension to 
human nnd^standing, they appear to have dififerent spheret 
allotted to them. 

420 THE V.SION. aa-SI 

Than have those spirits which so late thou saw's! ; 

Nor more or fewer yean exist ; but all 

Make the first circle^ beauteous, diversely 

Partaking of sweet life, as more or -less 

Afflation of eternal bliss pervades them. 

Here were they shown thee, not that fate assigoe 

This for their sphere, but for a sign to thee 

Of that celestifd farthest from the height. 

Thus needs, that ye may apprehend, we speak 

Since from things sensible alone ye learn 

That, which, digested rightly, after turns 

To intellectual. For no other cause 

The scripture, condescending graciously 

To your perception, hands and feet' to God 

Attributes, nor so means : and holy church 

Dcth represent with human countenance 

Gabriel, and Mich&el, and hun who made 

Tobias whole.' Unlike what here thou seest, 

The judgment of Timieus,^ who affirms 

Each soul restored to its particular star ; 

Believing it to have been taken thence. 

When nature gave it to inform her mould : 

Y'et to appearance his intention is 

Not what his words declare : and so to shun 

Derision, haply thus he hath disguised 

His true opinion.* If his meaning be, 

^ THe first circle.] The empyrean. 
» Hands and feet.] Thus Milton :— 

What surmounts the reach 

or human sense, I shall delineate so. 
By likening spiritual to corporeal forms, 
As shall express them best. P. Z>., b. v. 57S. 

These passages, rightly eoitstdered, may tend to remoye the 
scruples of some, who are oflbnded by any attempts at repie- 
senting the Deity in pictures. 

■ ■ Him who made 

T^iof whole.] 

Raphael, the sociable spirit, that deign*d 

To travel with Tobias, and secoied 

His maniage with the seven times wedded maid. 


* TVnusitf.] In the Convito, p. 92, our author again refers 
to the Tlmeus of Plato, on the sul|ject of the mnadane ays* 
tem ; but it is In order to give the preference to the opInloB 
respecting it held by Aristotle. 

• His true amnion.] In like manner, our learned StUlin^ 
fleet has professed bimself " somewhat inclinable to think 
(hat Plato knew more of the lapse of mankind than he would 
openly discover, and for that end disguised it after his usual 
manner in that hypothesis of pre-existence.** Or%fiiic# te* 
.rat, h. iii. c. ill. $ 15 

j»^b& PARADISE, Canto IV. 421 

That to the influencmg of these oibs revert 
The honor and the blame in human acts, 
Perchance he doth not wholly mifis the tmth. 
This principle, not understood aright, 
Erewhile perverted well nigh all the worid ; 
So that it fell to fabled names of Jove, 
And Mercury, and Mars. That other doubt, 
Which moves thee, is leas harmful ; for it brings 
No peril of removing thee from me. 

" That, to the eye of man,' dor justice seems 
Unjust, is argument for faith, and not 
For heretic declension. But, to the end 
This truth' may stand more clearly in your view, 
I will content thee even to thy wi^ ■ 

" If violence be, when that which suflfers, naught 
Consents to that which forceth, not for this 
These spirits stood exculpate. For the will, 
That wills not, still survives nnquench'd, and doth. 
As nature doth in fire, though violence « 
Wrest it a thousand thnes ; for, if it yield 
Or more or less, so far it follows force. - 
And thus did these, when they had power to seek 
The hallow'd place again. In them, had will 
Been perfect, such as once upon the bars 
Held Laurence' firm, or wrought in Scsvola* 
To his own hand remorseless ; to the path, [back^ 
Whence they were drawn, their steps had hasten'^ 
When liberty retum'd : but in too few, 
Resolve, so steadfast, dwells. And by these words 
If duly weigh'd, that argument is void, 
Which oft might have peiplex'd thee still. But now 
Another question thwarts thee, which, to solve. 
Might try thy patience without better aid. 
I have, no doubt, instill'd into thy mmd, 
Tliat blessed spirit may not lie ; since near 

1 Thaif to the eye o/man.] " That the ways of divine jus- 
liee are often inscratable to man, ought rather to be a motive 
to £9iith than an indneement to heresy.** Such appears to me 
the most satisfactory explanation of the passage. 

* TkiM fmlA.] That It is no Impeachment of 6od*s justice, 
jf merit be lessened through compulsion of others, without 
any fiUlure of good intention on the part of the meritorious. 
Aner all, Beatrice ends by admitting that there was a defect 
In the wUl, which hindered Constance and the others firom 
seizing tho first opportunity, that offered itself to them, of re- 
turning to the monastic life. 

* Z^vrenej.] Who suffered martyrdom in the third centuiy 
« SecnolaA See 1.iv. Hist., D. 1, lib. ii. 13. 



422 THE VISION. BS-ltt 

The source of pi.inal truth it dwells for ayo ; 
Anu thou mightst after of Piccarda learn 
That Constance held affection to the veil ; 
So that she seems to contradict me here. 
Not seldomi brother, it hath chanced for men 
To do what they had gladly left undone ; 
Yet, to shun peril, they have done amiss * 
E'en Bs Alcmason,^ at his father's' suit 
Slew his own mother ;' so made pitiless. 
Not to lose pity. On this point bethink thee. 
That force and will are blended in such wise 
As not to make the offence excusable. 
Absolute will agrees not to the wrong ; 
But inasmuch as there is fear of wo 
From non-compliance, it agrees. Of will* 
Thus absolute, Piccarda spake, and I 
Of the other ; so that both haye truly said." 

Such was the flow of that pure rill, that wt, il'd 
From forth the fountain of all truth ; and such 
The rest, that to my wandering thoughts I found. 

" O thou, of primal love the prime delight, 
Goddess !** I straight replied, " whose lively words 
Still shed new heat and vigor through my soul ; 
Afiection fails me to requite thy grace 
With equal sum of gratitude : be his 
To recompense, who sees and can reward thee. 
Well I discern, that by that truth* alone 
Enlighten'd, beyond which no truth may roam, 
Our mind can satisfy her thirst to know : 
Therein she resteth, e'en as in his lair 
The wild beast, soon as she hath reach'd thatbouna 
And she hath power to reach it ; else desire 
Were given to no end. And thence doth doubt 
Spring, like a shoot, around the stock of truth ; 
And it is nature which, from height to height, 
On to the summit prompts us. This invites, 

1 Mcmaon.] Ovid, Met, lib. ix. f. 10. 

Uitasque parente paientem 

Natns, erit facto pins et aceleratos eodem. 

3 Nis fatker't. Amphiailliu. 

* Hit ownmotAer.] Eriphyle. 

« Of tnlL] **What Piccarda asserts of Contiaiiee, that 
5d- ~ - ■ ' 

she retahied her affection to the monastic life, is said 
lately and wlthont relation to circomstances ; and HbrnX, 
whlcn I affirm, is spoken of the will conditionally and ve- 
imcUyely; so that our appaxent dillbrence la witnoat anf 

» TksH trua.] The light of divine tmth 

1S<>-J38. PARADISE. Canto V 493 

Thb doth asBure me, Lady ! reverently 

To ask thee of another truth, that yet 

Is dark to me. I fain would know, if man 

By other works well done may so supply 

The failure of his vows, that in your scale 

They lack not weight'' I spake ; and on mo straight 

Beatrice looked, with eyes that shot forth sparks 

Of love celestial, in such copious stream. 

That, virtue sinking in me overpower'd, 

I tum'd ; and downwaid bent, confused, my sight 



The question proposed in the last Canto is answered. Daiit* 
ascends with Beatrice to the planet Mercury, which is the 
second heaven; and hero he finds a maltitnde of spliits, 

. one of whom offers to satisfy him of any thing he may de^ 
sire to know from them. 

" If beyond earthly wont,' the flame of love 
Illume me, so that I overcome thy power 
Of vision, marvel not : but learn the cause 
In that perfection of the sight, which, soon 
As apprehendmg, hasteneth on to reach 
The good it apprehends. I well discern. 
How in thine mtellect already diines 
The light eternal, which to view alone 
Ne'er fails to kindle love ; and if aught else 
Your love seduces, 'tis but that it shows 
Some iU-mark'd vestige of that primal beam. 

" This would'st thou know : if failure of the vow 
^ By other service may be so supplied, 
* As from self-question' to assure the soul." 

Thus she her words, not heedless of my wish* 
Began ; and thus, as one who breaks not off 
Discourse, continued in her saintly strain. 
" Supreme of gifts,' which God, creating, gave 

1 If beifond earthly wont.] Dante having been unable to sus- 
tain the splendor of Beamce, as we have seen at the end of 
the last f^to, she tells him to attribute her Increase of bright- 
ness to the place in which they were. 

s Supreme ^ gift*.] So in the De Monarchic, lib. 1. p. 107 
and 106. "Si eigo judicimn moveat," &c. "If then the 
{odg^ient altogether move the appetite, and is in no wise 
prevented by i^ it Is free. But if the judgment be moved by 
the appetite in any way preventing it, it cannot be fVee : be> 
moao It acts not of Itselr, but js led captive bv another. And 

424 THK VISION. x»-ft 

Of his free bounty, sign most eyident 
Of goodness, and in & account most. prised, 
Was liberty of will ; the boon, wherewith 
All intellectual creatures, and them solot 
He hath endowed. Hence now thou mayst infer 
Of what high worth the vow, which so is firamedi 
That when man o6^i8, God well pleased accepts 
For iu the compact between God and himi 
This treasure, such as I describe it to thee. 
He makes the vjictim ; and of his own act 
What compensation therefore may he find ? 
If that, whereof thou hast oblation made, 
By using well thou think*st to consecrate. 
Thou wouldst of theft^ do charitable deed. 
Thus I resolve thee of the greater point 

<< But forasmuch as holy church, herein 
Dispensing, seems to oontradict the truth 
I have dii^over'd to .<';e, yet behooves 
Thou rest a little longer at the board. 
Ere the crude aliment which thou hast ta'en. 
Digested fitl^, to nutrition turn. 
Open thy mmd to what I now imfold ; 
And give it inward keeping. Knowledge cornea 
Of learning well retained, unfruitful else. 

** This sacrifice, in essence, of two things* 
Consisteth : one is that, whereof 'tis made ; 
The covenant, the other. For the last, 
It ne'er is cancelled, if not kept : and hence 
i spake, erewhile, so strictly of its force. 

For this it was enjoin'd the Israelites,* 

- - - ' - ■ - - _ 

hence it is that iMHtes oajinot have ftee Jodgment, beci»iis€ 
their Judgments are always pievented by appetite. And 
hence it may also appear manifest, that intellectual sub 
stances, whose wills lire immutable, and lilcewise souls sepa* 
rated ftom the body, and departing ftom It well and holily, 
lose not the liberty of choice am aecoant of the Immnlaliinty 
of the will, but retain it most perfectly and powerfhlly. TUs 
being discerned, it is again plain, that this liberty or piinci 
pie of all our liberty, is the greatest good confenred on famnaa 
nature by God ; because by this very thing we are here made 
happy, as men ; by this we are elsewhere happy, as divine 

^ Thou teouldst of theft.] ** Licet tat de furto,** Ice. Ds 
Mnarehid, lib. ii.p. 133. ''Although a thief should oat of 
that which he has stolen give help to a poor man, yet Is thai 
not to be called almsgiving.'* 

* T\pQ thingM^ The one, the substance of the vow, as of 
a single life for Int tance, or of keeping Ast; the other, th«» 
fouipaet, or fprm of it 

" n WM Ai/omV the Uradiiu } See liBV. c. zU. and xi vU 

(0-«O. PARADISE, Canto V 4S5 

Though leave were given them, as thou know'st, to 

The SSenng, still to offer. The other part, Ichange 

The matter and the substance of the vow, 

May well be such, as that, without ofience. 

It may for other substance be exchanged. 

But, at his own discretion, none may shift 

The burden on his shoulders ; unreleased 

By either key,' the yellow and the white. 

Nor deem of any change, as less than vain, 

If the last bond^.be not within the new 

Included, as the quatre in the six. 

No satisfaction therefore can be paid 

For what so precious in the balance weighs, * 

That all in counterpoise must kick the l^am. 

Take then no vow at random : ta'en, with faith 

Preserve it ; yet not bent, as Jephthah once, 

Blindly to execute a rash resolve. 

Whom better it had suited to exclaim, 

* I have done ill,' than to redeem his pledge 

By doing worse : or, not unlike to him 

In folly, that great leader of the Greeks ; 

Whence, on the altar, Iphigenia moum'd 

Her virgin beauty, and hath since made mount 

Both wise and simple, even all, who hear 

Of so fell sacrifice. Be ye more staid, 

O Christians ! not, like feather, by each wind 

Removeable ; nor think to cleanse yourselves 

In every water. Either testament, 

The old and new, is yours : and for your guide. 

The shepherd of the church. Let this suffice 

To save you. When by evil lust enticed. 

Remember ye be men, not senseless beasts ; 

Nor let the Jew, who dwelleth in your streets, 

Hold you in mockery. Be not, as the lamb. 

That, fickle wanton, leaves its mother's milk. 

To dally with itself in idle play." 

Such were the words that Beatrice spake 
These ended, to that region,* where the world 

1 Either keg.] Purgatory, Oanto Ix. 106. 

^ If the last bontU] If the thing snbstitnted be not flir morf 
precious than that which is released. 

* That region.] As some explain It, the east: according 
lo others, tne equinoctial line. Lombardl supposes it to 
mean that she looked upwards. Monti, in his Proposta, 
(vol. 3, pt« 2, p. Izzix. Milan, 1896^ has adduced a passage 
from our anthor*8 C!onyito, which mres the sense. Dieo an* 
feora, che quanto il Clelo k piu presso al cerehio eqaatore, 
tanto 4 piu nvobile per compuo^one alii suoi ; perocchd ha 

I^a THE VISI0X9. 87-1% 

1b liveliest, full of ..ond detiie she torn'd. 

Though mainly prompt new question to propcse* 
Her silence and cshonged look did. keep me dumb 
And as the airow, ere the cord is still, 
Leapeth unto its mark ; so on we sped 
Into the second realm* There I beheld 
The dame, so joyous, enter, that the orb 
Grew brighter at her smiles ; and, if the star 
Wero moved to gladness, what then was my cheer, 
Whom nature hath made apt for every change * 

As in a quiet and clear lake the fiish, 
if aught approach them from without, do draw 
Towards it, deeming it their food ; so drew 
Full more than thousand spWdors towards us ; 
And in each one was heard: '* Lo ! one arrived 
To multiply our loves !" and as each came. 
The shadow, streamm^ forth effulgence new. 
Witnessed augmented jay. Here, Keader ! think* 
If thou didst miss the sequel of my tc^e, . , 
To know the rest how sorely thou wouldst cravn 
And thou shalt see what vebemtoit desire 
Pofisess'd me, soon as these had met my view. 
To know theur state. << O bom in happy hour I 
Thou, to whom grace vouchsafes, or ere thy close 
Of fleshly warfsfare, to behold the thrones 
Of that eternal triumph ; know, to us 
The light communicated, which through heaven 
Expatiates without bound. Therefore, if aught 
Thou of our beams wouldst hofrow for thine aid, 
Spare not ; and, of our radiance, take thy fill." 

Thus of those piteous spirits one bespoke m9 ; 
And Beatrice next : *' Say on.; and trust 
As unto godB."i--^"H0w in the light supreme 
Thou harbor'st, and fj»m thence the virtue bring'st, 
That, spaikling in thine eyes, denotes thy joy, 
I mark : but, who thou art, am stiU to seek ; 
Or wherefore, worthy spirit i for thy lot 
This sphere' assiffn'd, that oft £rom mortal ken 
Is veU*d by others beams." I said ; and tum'd 
Toward the lustre, that with greeting kind 
ErewhLe had hail'd me. Forthwith, brighter far 
Than erst, it wax'd : and, as himself the sun 

pi& movimento, e piu attnalitA, e pl<k vita, e plA lioiCM, • pU 
tocca di quello, che ^ aopm se, e per conaegneato pLik viftii» 
30. p. 48. 

> Thi9 tphere.] Ths planet Meromry, which, being neamf 
^o the ton, is oftenest hidden by that laininary. 

189-134. FARADISi:, Cantc YI. 427 

Hides through excesi ci light, when his warm gaze' 
Hath on the mantle of thick yapors prey'd ; 
Within its proper ray the saintly diape 
Was, through increase of gladness, thus conceal'd ; 
And, shrouded so in splendor, answered me, 
G'en as the tenor of my song declares 



The spirit, who had offered to satisfy the inquiries of Danle, 
declares himself to be the Emperor Jastinian ; and aftei 
speaking of his own actions, recounts the victories, be- 
fore him, obtained under the Koman Eagle. He then 
informs our Poet that the soul of Romeo the pilgrim is in 
the same star. 

" Aftbr that Constantino the eagle tum'd^ 
Against the motions of the heaven, that roU'd 
Consenting with its course, when he of yore, 
Lavinia*s spouse, was leader of the flight ; 
A hundred years twice told and more,' his seat 
At Europe's extreme point,^ the bird of Jove 
Heldj near the mountains, whence he issued first ; 
Tnere under shadow of his sacred plumes 
Swaying the world, till through successive hands 
To mine he came devolved. Csssar I was ; 
And am Justinian ; destined by the will 
Of that prime love, whose influence I feel, 
From yam excess to clear the incumber'd laws.* 

1 When his warm gate.] When the sun has dried up the 
rapors that shaded ms brightness. 

■ jSfter that Cotutantine the eagle tuniV.J Constantine, in 
transferring the seat of empire from Rome to Byzantium, 
carried the eagle, the Imperial ensign, irom the west to the 
east. i£neas, on the contrary, had, with better augury, 
moved along with the sun's course, when he passed from 
Troy to Italy. 

* jj hundred years twice told and more.'] The Emperor Con- 
Btantine entered Byzantium in 324 ; and Justinian began his 
reign in S!7 

* At Eureps^s extreme point.] Constantinople being situ- 
fttedatthe extreme of Europe, and on the borders of Asia, 
near those mountains in the neighborhood of Troy, £roDi 
vhenee the first founders of Rome had emigrated. 

* lb clear the ineumber*d laws.] The code of laws wat 
ftbtdged and reibnned by Justinian. 

Ginstiniano iM>n )o, dlsse il primajo, 
Che '1 troppo e *1 van secai for delle \eg^ 
Ora soggette ail* anne e al denajo. 

2iV4:z<t II ^!iMirirn lib. iv. cap. 13 

428 THE VISION. !♦«> 

Or ere that work enga^d me, I did hold 

In Christ one nature only ;^ with such faith 

Contented. But the blessed Agapete,' 

Who was chief shepherd, he with warning voice 

To the true faith recaird me. I belieyed 

His words: aiid what he taught, new plainly see) 

As thou in every contradiction seest 

The true and false opposed. Soon as my feet 

Were to the church reclaimed, to my great task, 

By inspiration of God's grace impelled, 

I gave me wholly ; and consignM mine arms 

To Belisarius, with whom heaven's right hand 

Was link'd in such conjointment, 'twas a sign 

That I should rest To thy first question thus 

I shape mine answer, which were ended here, 

But that its tendency doth prompt perforce 

To some addition ; that thou well mayst mark. 

What reason on each side they have to plead, 

By whom that holiest banner is withstood. 

Both who pretend its power* and who q)po6e.^ 

" Beginning from that hour, when Pallas died* 
To give it rule, behold the valorous deeds 
Have made it worthy reverence. Not unknowi/ 
To thee, how for three hundred years and more 
It dwelt in Alba, up to those fell lists 

* In Christ one nature only.\ Justinian is said to have boco 
a follower of the heretical opinions held by Entyches,- " whii 
taught that in Christ there was but one nature, viz. that of 
the incarnate word." Madaine^s Moskeimt torn. 11. cent. ▼. 
p. ii. cap. v. ^ 13. 

3 Affapete.] " Agapetus, Bishop of Rome, whose Scheda 
Regia, addressed to the Emperor Justinian, procured him a 
place among the wisest and most Judicious writers of this 
century." ^d.^ cent. vl. p. ii. cap. 11. $ 8. Compare Faxio 
degll Uberti, Dittamondo, 1. 11. cap. xvl. 

3 fVho pretend its power.] The Ghibellines 

^ And who oppose.] The Gnelphs. 

fi Pallas died.] See Vh^U, iSn., lib. x. 

* JVo( nnknoton.] In the second book of his treatise Ue 
Monaichlft, where Dante endeavors to prove that the Romaa 
people had a right to govern the world, he refers to theh 
conquests and successes In nearly the same order as in thi^ 
passage. "The Roman,** he affirms, "might truly say, as 
the Apoctle did to Timothy, TJiere Is laid up for me a crowa 
of lighteonsnoss ; laid up, that Is, In the eternal provldeaee 
of God.** p. 13L And again : "Now it is manifest, that liy 
ittef (perauellum) the Roman people acquired the Enpin; 
therefore they acquired it by right, to prove which is tiM ooala 
purpose of the pnsent book.** p. 19S. 

)»4S& PARAD1S£, CAflTo VI. 429 

Where, for its sake, were met the rival tliree ;* 
Nor aught unknowu to thee, which it achieved 
Down' from the Sabines' wroi:g to Lucrece' wo ; 
With its seven kings conquering the nations round ; 
Nor all it wrought, by Roman worthies borne 
'Gainst Brennus and the Epirot prince,^ and hoeUi 
Of single chiefs, or states in league combined 
Of social warfare : hence, Torquatus stern, 
And Quintius^ named of his neglected locks, 
Thf> Decii, and the Fabii hence acquired 
Their fame, which I with duteous zeal embalm.^ 
By it the pride of Arab hordes" was quell'd, 
When they, led on by Hannibal, o'eipass'd 
The Alpine rocks, whence glide thy currents, Po ! 
Beneath its guidance, in their prime of days 
Scipio and Fompey triumph'd ; and that hill,^ 
Under whose summit^ thou didst see the light, 
Rued its stem bearing. After, near the hour," 

1 The rival three.\ The Horatii and Curlatil. 

> DowH.j " From the rape of the Babine women to the vio 
lation of Lncretia*" 

* The Epirot prince.] KingPyrrhus. 

* Qutn^iw.] Qnintius Cincinnatns. 

£ Clncinnato dair incolta chioma. Petrarea» 

Compare De Mottarclu&, lib. U. p. 121, &c. '' Itaque, inqoit, 
et majores nostri," &c. 

* Embalm.] The word in the original is " mirro," which 
>ome think is nut for " miro,** " I behold or regard ;*' and oth 
srs imderstand, as I have rendered it. 

* jfroft korae$.\ The Arabians seem to be put for the ber> 
barians in general. Lomt>ardi*s comment is, that as the 
Arabs are an Asiatic people, and it is not recorded that Han- 
nibal had any other troops except his own countrymen the 
Carthaginians, who were Africans, we must understand that 
Dante denominates that people, Arabs, on account of theii 
3i1gin. **• Ab Ifrico Arable felicis rege, qui omnium primus 
banc terram ( Afhcam) incolnisse fertur," &c. Leo ^fricanuB' 
^fricm DetcripUoj lib. i. cap. i. 

» That hill. J The city of Fesnlee, which was sacked by the 
Etomans after the defeat of Catiline. 

8 Under whoee eummit.] " At the foot of which is situated 
Florence, thy birthplace." 

* Mar ^U hour.] Near the time of our Saviour^s birth. 
"The immeasurable goodness of the Deity being willing 
again to conform to Itself the human creature, which by 
transgresjion of the first man had from God departed, and 
fallen ftom his likeness, it was determined in that most high 
and closest eonaistory of the Godhead, the Trinity, that the 
Sou of God should descend upon earth to make this agree- 
fnent And becarise it was behoveful, that at his coming. 
Ihe wodd, not od y the heaven but the earth, shoa'd be iu 


When heaven was mmded that o'er all the world 

His own deep calm should brood, to Caesar's hand 

Did Eome consign it ; and what then it wrought^ 

From Var mito the Rhine, saw Isere's flood, 

Saw Loire and Seine, and every vale, that fills 

The torrent Rhone. What after that it wrought. 

When from Ravenna it came forth, and leap'd 

The Rubicon, was of so bold a flight. 

That tongue nor pen may follow it. Towards Spain 

It wheel'd its bands, then tpward Dyn^chium smote, 

And on Pharsalia, with so fierce a plunge, 

E*en the warm Nile was conscious to the pang ; 

Its native shores Antandros, and the streams 

Of Simois revisited, and there 

Where Hector lies ; then ill for Ptolemy 

His pennons shook again ; lightning thence fell 

On Juba ; and the next, upon your west, 

At sound of the Pompeian trump, retum'd. 

" What following, and in its next bearer's gripe,* 
It wrought, is now by Cassius and Brutus 
Bark'd of ' in hell ; and by Perugia's sons, 
And Modena's, was moum'd. Hence weepeth still 
Sad Cleopatra, who, pursued by it. 
Took from the adder black and sudden death 
With him it ran e'en to the Red Sea coast ; 
With him composed the world to such a peace, 
That of his temple Janus barr'd the door. 

" But all the mighty standard yet had wrought. 
And was appointed to perform thereafter, 
Throughout the mortal kingdom which it sway'd. 
Falls in appearance dwindled and obscured, 
If one with steady eye and perfect thought 
On the third CsBsar* look ; for to his hands, 

the best possible disposition ; and the best dispoeition of Die 
earth is, when it is a monarchy, that ts, all under one prince^ 
as hath been said above ; therefore through the divine fore 
cast was ordained that people and that city for the accom- 
rriisfainent, namely, the gl<Nrioiis Rome.*' Canvito, p. 138. 
The same cignment is repeated at the conclusion of the 'first 
hook of oor author's treatise " De Monarehi&.*' 

> ffhoi then it vrov^kt.] In the following fifteen lines the 
Poet has comprised the exploits of Jnlius Cesar, for which, 
and for the allusions in the greater part of this speech of Jus 
Unian's, I must refer my reader to the history of Rome. 

- ^ In its next bearer's gripe.] With Aagostos Cffisar. 
^BarVdof,] rualO^ hXeucrtt. Sepkoelss, Eltetrtu 9a». 

* The third Gtsar.^ The eagle in the hand of Tiberius, the 
third of the Cssars, outdid all its achieveAents, both put 
•ind ftiture, by becoming the instrument of that mightv and 

jO-107. PARAPISE, Canto VI. 481 

The living Justice, in whose breath I ir. Jve, 
Committed glory, e'en into his hands, 
To execute the vengeance of its wrath. 

" Hear now, and wonder at, what next I teii. 
After with Titus it was sent to wreak 
Vengeance for vengeance^ of the ancient sin. 
And, when the Lombard tooth, with fang impure, 
Did. gore the bosom of the holy church, 
Under its wings, victorious, Charlemain^ 
Sped to her rescue. Judge then for thyself 
Of those, whom I erewhiie accused to thee. 
What they are, and how grievous their offending, 
Who are the cause of all your ills. The one' 
Against the universal ensign rears 
The yellow lilies ;* and with partial aim, 
That, to himself, the other^ arrogates : 
So that 'tis hard to see who most offends. 
Be yours, ye Ghibellines,' to veil your hearts 

mysterious act of satisfaction made to the divine justice in the 
crucifixion of our Lord. This is Itombardi's explanation ; and 
he deserves much credit for being right, where all the otiier 
commentators, as far as I know, are wrong. See note to 
Purg., Canto xxxii. 50. • 

1 Vengeance for vengeance.'^ This will be afterwards ex 
plained by the Poet himself. See next Canto, v. 47, and note. 

3 Charlemain.'] Dante could not be ignorant that the reign 
of Justinian was long prior to that of Charlemain; but the 
spirit of the former emperor is represented, both in this in- 
stance and in what follows, as conscious of the events th£.t 
had taken place after his own time. 

3 The one,'\ The Guelph party, 

* The yellow lilies.] The French ensign 

^ The other."] The Ghibelline party. 

« Ye Ohibellinea.] " Authors differ much as to the begin- 
ning of these factions, and the origin of the names by which 
they were distinguished. Some say that they began in Italy 
as early as the Ume of the Emperor Frederick I. in his well 
known disputes with Pope Alexander III. about the year 
1160. Others make them more ancient, dating them from 
the reign of the Emperor Henry IV. who died in 1135. But 
the most common opinion is, that they arose in the contests 
oetween the Emperor Frederick II. and Pope Gregory IX., and 
that this Emperor, wishing to ascertain who were his own 
adherents, and who those of the Pope, caused the former to 
be maik'ed by the appellation of Ghibellines, and the latter by 
that of Guelphs. It is more probable, however, that the fac- 
tions were at this time either renewed, or diffused more wide- 
ly, and that their origin was of an earlier date, since it is 
certain that G. Villani, b. v. c. 37, Ricordano Malaspina, c. civ., 
and Pietro Bnoninsegni, b. i. of their histories of Florence, 
are agreed, that even from 1215, that is, long before Frederick 
had succeeded to the Empire, and Gregory to the Pontificate, 
by the death of Buondetmone Buondelmonti, one of the chief 



482 THE VISION. l(»-itt 

Beneath another standard: ill is this 

FoUow'd of him, who severs it and justice : 

And let not with his Guelphs the liew-crowii'd 

Assail it ; but those talons hold in dread, [Charlee 

Which from a lion of more lofty port 

Have rent the casmg. Many a time ere now 

The sons have for the su^'s transgression wail'd * 

Nor let him trust the fond belief, that heaven 

Will truck its armor for his lilied shield. 

" This little star is fumish'd with' good spirits. 
Whose mortal lives were busied to that end, 
That honor and renown might wait on them : 
And, wheL desires^ thus err in their mtention, 
True love must needs ascend with slacker beam. 
But it is part of our delight, to measure 

gentlemen in Florence, (see Par., Canto xvi. v. 139,) the fke- 
tions of the Guelfi and Ghibellinl were introduced into that 
city." A. G. Artegiani, Annotations on the Qnadriregio, 
p. 180. " The same variety of opinion prevails with regard 
to the origin of the names. Borne deduce them from two 
brothers, who were Germans, the one called GUelph and the 
other Gibel, who bein^ the partisans of two powerfai femilies 
in Pl8toia,the Panciauchi, andtheCancellieri, then at enmity 
with each other, were the first occasion of these titles hav- 
ing been given to the discordant factions. Others, with more 
probability,' derive them from Goelph orGuelfone, Duke of 
Bavaria, and Gibello, a castle where his antagonist^ the Em- 
peror Conrad the Third, was born; in consequence of a battle 
l)etween Guelph and Henry the son of Conrad, which was 
'bturht (according to Mini, in his Defence of Florence, p. 48' 
A. D. 1138. Others assign to them an origin yet more an- 
cient ; asserting, that at the election of Frederick I. to the 
Empire, the Electors concurred in choosing him, in order to 
extinguish the inveterate discords between the Guelphs and 
Ghibellines, that prince being descended by the paternal line 
from the Ghibellines, and by the maternal from the Guelphs. 
Bartolo, however, in his tractate de Guelphis et Gibellinis, 
gives an intrinsic meaning to these names tram certain pas- 
sagos in Scripture. * Sicut Gibellus interpretatnr locus forti- 
tndinis, ita Gibellini appellantnr confidentes in fortitudine 
mill turn et armomm, et sicut Guelpha interpretatur os loqnena, 
ita Guelphi interpretantnr confidentes in oratianibos et in 
divinis.' What value is to be put on this interpntation, 
which well accords with the genius of those times when it 
was perhaps esteemed a marvellous mystery, we leave it to 
others to decide.*' Ibid. 

1 Charlu.] The Commentators explain tblfl to mean 
Charles II. king of Naples and Sicily. Is it not more likely 
to allude to Charles of Valols, son of Philip III. of Vnnte, 
who was sent for, about this time, into Italy by Pope Bonl- 
I^ce, with the promise of being made emperor 1 See G. VU- 
lani, lib.vlii. cap. 43. 

3 Wun detireg.] When honor and fame aie the ehitf mo* 
Cives to action, tliat love, which has heaven for its oijccti 
must necessarily become less fervent 

1S9-13G. PARADISE, Canto VI. 439 

Our wages with the merit ; and admire 
The close proportion. Hence doth heaTenly jiistico 
Temper so evenly afiection in ns. 
It ne'er can warj) to any wrongfulness. 
Of divene voices is sweet music made : 
So in our life the different degrees 
Render sweet harmony among these wheels. 
" Within the pearl, that now encloseth us, 
Shines Romeo's light,' whose goodly deed and fair 
Met ill acceptance. But the rroven9als, 
That were his foes, have little cause for mirth. 
Ill shapes that man his course, who makes his wrong 
Of other's worth. Four daughters' were there bora 
To Raymond Berenger f and every one 

1 Ronuo^B light.] The story of Romeo is involved in some 
oncertalnty. The name of Ronteo signified, as we have seen 
in the note Pnrg., Canto xxxiii. v. 78, one who went on a pil 
grimage to Rome. The French writera assert the continu- 
ance of his ministerial office even after the decease of his 
sovereign, Raymond Berenger, Count of Provence : and they 
rest this assertion chiefly on the fact of a certain Romieu do 
Vilieneuve, who was the contemporary of that prince, hav- 
ing left large possessions behind him, as appears by his will 
preserved m the archives of the bisliopric of Venice. Thai 
they are right as to the name at least, would appear from 
the following marginal note on the Monte Cassino MS. Ro- 
meo de Villanova dlstrictus civitatis Ventle de Provlncia 
olim administratoris Raymundi Belingerj Comltis de Provln- 
cia — ^Ivlt peregrinando contemplatioue ad Deum. Yet it is 
improbable, on the other hand, that the Italians, who lived 
so near the time, should be misinformed In an occurrence of 
such notoriety. According to them, after he had long been 
a faithful steward to Raymond, when an account was re- 
quired from him of the revenues which he had carefblly bus 
banded, and his master as lavishly disbursed. ** he demanded 
the little mule, the staff, and the scrip, with which he had 
first entered into the count's service, a stranger pilgrim from 
the shrine of St. James, in Galicia, and parted as he came ; 
nor was it ever known whence he was, or whither he went ' 
O. ViUanit lib. vi. c. 92. The same incidents are told of him 
at the oon elusion of cap. xxviii lib. 11. of Fazio dcgli Uhertl*s 

s Fhur daughters.] Of the four daughters of Raymond 
Berenger, Margaret, the eldest, was married to Louis IX. of 
France ; Eleanor, the next, to Henry III. of England ; San- 
cha, the third, to Richard, Henry's brother, and King of the 
Romans ; and the youngest, Beatrix, to Charles I., King of 
Naples and Sicily, and brother to Louis. 

* Rojfnumd Berenger.] This prince, the last of the house 
of Barcelona, who was Count of Provence, died in ]91o. He 
Is in the list of Provencal poets. See Millot, Hist. Litt. des 
lYonbadours, tom. ii. p. 313. But M. Raynouard could find 
DO manuscript of his works. See Choix des Po^slcs de^ 
TVoobadours tom. v. p. vU 


4ra4 lilE VISION. 151-141 

Became a queou : and this for him did Rombo* 
Though oi' mean state and from a foreign laud' 
Yet envious tongues incited him to ask 
A recJLoning of that just one, who retur:i*d 
Twelve fold to him for ten. Aged and poor 
He paited thence : and if the world did know 
The heart he had, begging his life by morsels, 
'Twoutd deem the praise it yields him, scantly deaiL' 




fn consequence of what had been said by Justin an, nv ho to- 
gether with the other spirits have now disappeared, soice 
doabts arise in the mind of Dante respectinc the hmnui 
redemptkm. These difficulties are folly explained by Baa 

" Hobanna' Sanctus Deus Sabaoth 
Superillustrans daritate tuA. 
Felices ignes horum malahoth." 
Thus chanting saw I turn that substance bright 
With fourfold lustre to its orb again, 
Revolving ; and the rest, unto their dance,