1265-1321 Dante Alighieri.

The Vision : or, Hell, Purgatory, and Paradise, of Dante Alighieri online

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Still doth the tile of Hebrew dames proceed.
For these are a partition wall, whereby 15

The sacred stairs are sever'd, as the faith
In Christ divides them. On this part, where blooms
Each leaf in full maturity, are set
Such as in Christ, or ere he came, believ'd.
On th' other, where an intersected space 20

Yet shows the semicircle void, abide
All they, who look'd to Christ already come.
And as our Lady on her glorious stool.
And they who on their stools beneath her sit,
This way distinction make : e'en so on his, 25

The mighty Baptist that way marks the line
(He who endur'd the desart and the pains
Of martyrdom, and for two years of hell,
Yet still continued holy), and beneath,
Augustin, Francis, Benedict, and the rest, 30

Thus far from round to round. So heav'u's decree
Forecasts, this garden equally to fill.
With faith in either view, jiast or to come,
Learn too, that downward from the step, which cleaves
Midw^ay the twain compartments, none there are 35

Who place obtain for merit of their own,
But have through others' merit been advanc'd,
On set conditions : spirits all releas'd,
Ere for themselves they had the power to choose.
And, if thou mark and listen to them well, 40

Their childish looks and voice declare as much.
" Here, silent as thou art, I know thy doubt ;
And gladly will I locse the knot, wherein
Thy subtil thoughts have bound thee. From this realm
Excluded, chance no entrance here may find, 45

No more than hunger, thirst, or sorrow can.
A law immutable hath stablish'd all;
Noi" is there aught thou seest, that doth not fit,


Exactly, as the finger to the ring.

It is not tlierefore without cause, tliat these, 50

0'ers]ieefly comers to iiiunortal life,

Are different in their shares of excellence.

Our Sovran Lord — that settleth this estate

In love and in deliijht so absolute,

That wish can dare no further — every soul, 55

Created in his joyous sight to dwell.

With grace at pleasure variously endows.

And for a proof th' effect may well suffice.

And 't is moreover most expressly mark'd

In holy scripture, where the twins are said 60

T' have struggled in the womb. Therefore, as grace

Inweaves the coronet, so every brow

Weareth its proper hue of orient light.

And merely in respect to his prime gift,

Not in reward of meritorious deed, 65

Hath each his several degree assign'd.

In early times with their own innocence

More was not wanting, than the parents' faith,

To save them : those first ages past, behov'd.

That circumcision in the males should imp 70

The flight of innocent Avings : but since the day

Of grace hath come, without baptismal rites

In Christ accomplish'd, innocence herself

Must linger yet below. Now raise thy view

Unto the visage most resembling Christ : 75

For, in her splendour only, shalt thou win

The pow'r to look on him." Forthwith I saw

Such floods of gladness on her visage shower'd,

From holy spirits, winging that profound ;

That, whatsoever I had yet beheld, 80

Had not so much suspended me with wonder,

Or shown nie such similitude of God.

And he, who had to her descended, once.

On earth, now haiPd in heav'n ; and on pois'd wing,

" Ave, Maria, Gratia Plena," sang : 85

To whose sweet anthem all the blissful court.

From all parts answ'ring, rang : tliat holier joy

Brooded the deej) serene. " Father rever'd :


Wlio (loli:c'i'«t5 foi" "i^^j ^o quit tlie pleasant i)lace,

AVhoroinlliou sittcst, l)y eternal k)t ! 90

Say, who that angel is, that with sueh glee

Jk'liolds our ({ueen, and so enaniour'd glows

Of her high beauty, that all fire he seems."

So I again resorted to the loi-e

Of niy wise teacher, he, whom Mary's charms 95

Embellisli'd, as the sun the moiMiing star;

Who thus in answer spake : "In him are sumra'd,

Wliate'er of buxomness and free delight

May be in spirit, or in angel, met:

And so beseems : for that he bare the paha 100

Down unto Mary, when the Son of God

Vouchsaf d to clothe him in terrestrial weeds.

Now let thine eyes wait heedful on my words,

And note thou of this just and ])ious realm

The chiefest nobles. Those, highest in bliss, 105

The twain, on each hand next our empress thron'd,

Are as it M'ere two roots unto this rose.

He to the left, the parent, whose rash taste

Proves bitter to liis seed ; and, on the right,

That ancient father of the holy church, 110

Into whose keeping Christ did give the keys

Of this sweet flow'r : near whom behold the seer.

That, ere he died, saw all the grievous times

Of the fair bride, who wdth the lance and nails

Was won. And, near unto the other, rests 115

The leader, imder whom on manna fed

Th' ungrateful nation, fickle and perverse.

On th' other part, facing to Peter, lo !

Where Anna sits, so well content to look

On her lov'd daughter, that with moveless eye 120

She chants the loud hosanna : while, oppos'd.

To the first father of your mortal kind,

Is Lucia, at whose best thy lady s])ed,

When on the edge of ruin clos'd thine eye.

" But (for the vision hasteneth so an end) 125

Here break we off, as the good workman doth.
That shapes the cloak according to the cloth :
And to the primal love our ken shall rise ;


That tliou mayst penetrate tlie brightness, far

As sight can bear tliee. Yet, ahxs ! in sootli 130

Beating thy pennons, thinking to advance,

Thou backward fall'st. Grace then must first be gain'd ;

Her grace, wliose niiglit can lielp thee. Thou in 2)i-ayer

Seek her : and, witli affection, whilst I sue,

Attend, and yiehl me all thy heart." He said, 135

And thus the saintly orison began.


" O viRGix mother, daughter of thy Son,

Created beings all in lowliness

Surpassing, as in height, above them all,

Term by th' eternal counsel pre-ordain'd,

Ennobler of thy nature, so advanc'd f

In thee, that its great Maker did not scorn,

Himself, in his own work enclos'd to dwell !

For in thy womb rekindling shone the love

Reveal'd, whose genial influence makes now

This flower to germin in eternal peace ! 10

Here thou to us, of charity and love.

Art, as the noon-day torch : and art, beneath.

To mortal men, of hope a living spring.

So mighty art thovi, lady ! and so great.

That he who grace desireth, and comes not 15

To thee for aidance, fain would have desire

Fly without wings. Nor only him who asks,

Thy bounty succours, but doth freely oft

Forerun the asking. Whatsoe'er may be

Of excellence in creature, pity mild, 20

Relenting mercy, large munificence,

Are all combin'd in thee. Here kneeletli one.

Who of all spirits hath review'd the state,

From the world's lowest gap nnto this height.

Suppliant to thee he kneels, imploring grace 25 •

For virtue, yet more high to lift his ken

Toward the bliss supreme. And I, who ne'er

Coveted sight, more fondly, for myself,

35S PAKAnisE.

Than now for liim, niy prayers to thee ])rofor,

(And ])r:iy they be not scant) that tliou wuuldst drive 30

Each cloud of his mortality away ;

That on the sovran ])lcasurc he may gaze.

This also I entreat of thee, O queen !

"Who canst do what thou wilt ! that in him thou

Wouldst after all he liath beheld, preserve 35

Affection sound, and human passions quell.

Lo ! where, with Beatrice, many a saint

Stretch their clasp'd hands, in furtherance of my suit ! "

The eyes, that heav'n with love and awe regards,
Fix'd on the suitor, witness'd, how benign 40

She looks on pious pray'rs : then fasten'd they
On th' everlasting light, wherein no eye
Of creature, as may well be thought, so far
Can travel inward. I, meanwhile, who drew
Near to the limit, Avhere all wishes end, 45

Tlie ardour of my wish (for so behov'd),
Ended within me. Beck'ning smii'd the sage,
That I should look aloft : but, ere he bade,
Already of myself aloft I look'd ;

For visual strength, refining more and more, 60

Bare me into the ray authentical
Of sovran liglit. Thenceforward, what I saw,
Was not for words to speak, nor memory's self
To stand against such' outrage on her skill.
As one, who from a dream awaken'd, straiglit, 55

All he hath seen forgets ; yet still retains
Impression of the feeling in his dream ;
E'en such am I : for all the vision dies,
As 't were, away ; and yet the sense of sweet,
That sprang from it, still trickles in my heart. 60

Thus in the sun-thaw is the snow unseal'd ;
Thus in the winds on flitting leaves was lost
The Sybil's sentence. O eternal beam !
(Whose lieight what reach of mortal thought may soar?)
Yield me again some little particle 65

Of what thou then appearedst, give my tongue
Power, but to leave one sparkle of thy glory,
Unto the race to come, that shall not lose


Thy triumph wholly, if thou waken aught

Of memory in me, and endure to hear 70

Tlie record sound in tliis unequal straiu.

Sucli keenness from the living ray I met,
That, if mine- eyes had turn'd away, methinks,
I had been lost ; but, so embolden'd, on
I pass'd, as I remember, till my view 75

Ilover'd the brink of dread infinitude.

O grace ! unenvying of thy boon ! that gav'st
Boldness to fix so earnestly my ken
On th' everlasting splendour, that I look'd.
While sight was unconsum'd, and, in that depth, 80

Saw in one volume clasp'd of love, whate'er
The universe unfolds ; all projierties
Of substance and of accident, beheld,
Comjiounded, yet one individual light
The whole. And of such bond methinks I saw 85

The universal form : for that whene'er
I do but speak of it, ray soul dilates
Beyond her proper self ; and, till I speak,
One moment seems a longer lethai-gy.
Than five-and-twenty ages had aj)])ear'd 90

To that emprize, that first made Neptune wonder
At Argo's shadow darkening on his flood.

With fixed heed, suspense and motionless,
Wondring I gaz'd ; and admiration still
Was kindled, as I gaz'd. It may not be, 95

Tliat one, who looks upon that light, can turn
To other object, willingly, his view.
For all the good, that will may co\'et, there
Is summ'd ; and all, elsewhere defective found.
Complete. My tongue shall utter now, no more 100

E'en what remembrance keeps, than could the babe's
That yet is moisten'd at his mother's breast.
Not that the semblance of the living light
Was chang'd (that ever as at first remain'd)
But that my vision quickening, in that sole 105

Appearance, still new miracles descry'd,
And toil'd me with the change. In that abyss
Of radiance, clear and lofty, seem'd methought,


Tliree orbs of triple hue dipt in one bound :
And, from anothex', one reflected seem'd, 110

As rainbow is from rainboAv : and tlie third
Seem'd fire, breath'd equally from both. Oh speech
How feeble and how faint art tliou, to give
Conception birth ! Yet this to what I saw
Is less than little. Oh eternal light ! 115

Sole in thyself that dwellst ; and of thyself
Sole understood, past, present, or to come !
Thou smiledst ; on that circling, which in thee
Seem'd as reflected splendour, while I mus'd ;
I For I therein, mcthought, in its own hue 120

\ Beheld our image painted : steadfastly
i I therefore por'd upon the view. As one
< Who vers'd in geometric lore, woiild fain
I Measure the circle ; and, though pondering long
I And deeply, that beginning, which he needs, 125

? Finds not ; e'en such was I, intent to scan
i The novel wonder, and trace out the form,
k How to the circle fitted, and therein

[How plac'd : but the flight was not for my wing ;
Had not a flash darted athwart my mind, 130

I And in the spleen unfolded what it sought.
f Here vigour fail'd the tow'ring fantasy :

iBut yet the will roll'd onward, like a wheel
In even motion, by the Love impell'd.
That moves the sun in heav'n and all the stars 135



Verse 1. In the midway.'] That the a?ra of the Poem is intended by

these words to he fixed to the thirty-fifth year of the poet's a.i-e, a.d. ]

1300, will appear more plainly in Canto XXI. where that date is explicitly \

marked. j

V. 16. That planet' s beam.'] The snn. 3

V. 29. The hinUer foot.'] It is to be remembered, that in ascending a \

hill the weight of the body rests on the hinder foot. 3

V. 30. A panther.] Pleasure or luxury. |

V. 3(). With those stars.] The sun was in Aries, in which sign ho suiJ- \

poses it to have begun its course at the creation. j

V. 43. A Hon.] Pride or ambition. '

V. 45. A she-ioolf.] Avarice.

v. 5(5. Where the sun in silence rests.] Hence Milton appears to have j

taken his idea in the Samson Agonistes : j

The snn to me is dark, \

And silent as the moon, &c. |

The same metaphor will recur, Canto V. v. 29. |

Into a place I came \
Where liglit was silent all.

V. G5. When the poiver of JnUns.] Tliis is explained by the comnien- ]

tators to mean — " Although it was rather late with respect to my birth, ~i

before .Julius C»sar assumed the supreme authority, and made himself ;

perpetual dictator." ]

V. 98. That grey hovnd.] This passage is intended as an eulogium on ]

the liberal spirit of his Veronese patron Can Grande della Scala. I

V 102. 'Twizt either Feltro.] Verona, the country of Can della Scala, ;

is situated between Feltro, a city in the Marca Trivigiana, and Monte |;

Feltro, a city in tlie territory of Urbino. \

V. 103. Italia,' s plains .] " Umile Italia," from Virgil, Mn. lib. iii. 522. \

Humilemque videmus \

V. 115. Content in fire.] The spirits in Purgatory.

V. 118. A spirit ivorthier.] Beatrice, who conducts the Poet through

V. i;!0. Saint Peter's fjaie.] The gate of Purgatory, whicli the Poet
feigns to bo gu;u'ded by an angel ]i!aced on that station by St. Peter.


3)2 NOTES.


V. 1. Now wan the (l(nj.'\ A conipciHlinm of Virgil's dcscrintion, ..'En.
lib. iv. 522. Nox erat, &c. Compare Apolhjiiiu.s KlunUus, lib. iii. 744. and
lib. iv, 1058
V. 8. miiul]

tlioiifjht tliat write all that I met,
And in the tresorie it .set
Of my biaine, now shall men see
If any viitne in thee be.

Chaucer. Temple of Fame, b. ii. v. 18.
V. 14. Silvnis^ sire.] ^neas.

V. 30. The chosen vessel.] St. Paul. Acts, c. ix. v. 15. " But the
Lord said unto him, Go thy way ; for he is a chosen vessel unto me."

V. 4(i. 77/// .wul.] L'anima tua e da viltate offe.sa. So in Bcrni, Orl.
Inn. lib. iii. c. i. st. 53.

Se I'alma avete offcsa da viltate.
V. 54. TF7iO rest S7(.<<pended.] The spirits in Limbo, neither admitted to
a state of glorj^ nor doomed to punishment.

V. (!1. A friend not of my fortune, hut myself] Se non forttiuie sed
hominibiis solere esse amicum. Cornelii Nepotis Attici V'itir, c. ix.

V. 7.S. Whatever is contain'd.] Every other thing comprised within
the liuiar heaven, which, being the lowest of all, has the smallest circle.
V. !);>. A blessed dame.] The divine mercy.
V. 07. Liicia.] The enlightening grace of heaven.
V. 124. Three 7naids.] The divine mercy, Lucia, and Beatrice.
V. 127. Asflo7-ets.] This simile is well translated by Chaucer —
But right as floures through the cold of night
Iclosed, stoupen in her stalkes lowe,
Redressen hem agen the sunue briglit.
And speden in her Idnde course by rowe, &c.

Troilus and Creseide, b. ii.
It has been imitated by many others, among whom see Berni, Orl. Inn.
lib. 1. c. xii. St. 8(5. Marino, Adone, c. xvii. st. (53. and Son. "Donna
vestita di nero." and Spenser's Faery Queen, b. 4. c. xii. st. 34. and b. G.
c. ii. st. 35.


V. 5. Poiver divine,

Supremcst wisdom, and primeval loiie."]
The three persons of the l:)lessed Trinity.
V. !). All hope abandoned.]

Lasciate ogni siieranza voi ch' eutrate.
So Berni, Orl. Inn. lib. i. c. 8. st. 53.

Lascia pur della vita ogni speranza.
V. 29. Like to the sand.]

Unnumber'd as the sands
Of Barca or Gyrene's torrid soil,
Le\ ied to side with warring winds, and poise
Their lighter wings.

Milton. P. L. b. ii. 003.

V. 40. La^t th' arc7(rsrd tribe.] Lest the reLellious niseis should exult
at seeing tliose who were neutral, .and therefore less guilty, condeuine<l
to the same puuisluutiit with thenisclves.
V. 50. A flag.]

All the grisly legions that troop
Under the sooty flag of Acheron. .

Milton. C'omus.
V. 56. Who to base fear

Yicklinr/, ahjur'd his hir/h estate.]
This is commonly understood of Celestine the Fifth, who abdicated the
papal power in 1294. Venturi mentions a work written by Innocenzio
Barcellini, of the Celestine order, and printed in Milan in 1701, in which
an atteni)it is m;ide to ])ut a different interpretation on this passage.
V. 70. Throiujh the blear licjht.]

Lo fioco lume.
So Filicaja, canz. vi. st. 12.

Qual fioco lame.
V. 77. An old man.]

Portitor has liorrendns aquas et flumina servat
Terribili sqnalore Charon, cui plurima nu-nto .
Canities inculta jacet ; stant lumina llaniuui.

Vir;/. /En. lib. tI. 2,
V. 82. In fierce heat and in ice.]

The delighted spirit
To bathe in fiery floods, or to reside
In thrilling regions of thick-ribbed ice.

Shakesp. Measure fur Measure, a. iii. s. 1.
Compare Milton, P. L. b. ii. COO.
V. 92. The livid lake.] Vada livida.

Virrj. yF.n. lib. vi. 320.
Totius ut Incus putida-que jialudis
Lividissima, maximeqne est profunda vorago.

Catullus, xviii. 10.
V. 102. With eyes ofbirrninr; coal.]

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

S2M)iser. F. Q. b. vi. c. vii. st. 42.
V. 104. As fall off the li</ht of autumnal leaves.]

Qnnm multa in silvis autnmni frigore i^rimo
Lapsa cadunt folia.

Virg. J??i. lib. vi. 300.
Compare Apoll. Rhod. lib. iv. 214,


V. 8. A thund'roits sound.] Imitated, as Mr. Thyer has remarked, by
Milton, P. L. b. viii. 242.

But long ere onr approaching heard
Noise, other than the sound of dance or song,
Torment, and loud lament, and furious rage.
V. 50. A pvLssant one.] Our Saviour.

364 NOTES,

V. 75. Honour the bard

Sitbl 17111'.]
Onorate I'iiltissiino poeta.
So Chiabrera, Canz. Eroiclie. i)2.

Onorando I'altissimo poeta.
V. 79. Of semblance neither sorrotoful nor glad.]
She lias to sober ne to plad.

Chaucer's Dream.
V. 90. T7ie Monarch of .vihlimest sonr/.] Homer.
V. 100. Fitter left untold.]

Che'l taccre fe bello.
So our Poet, in Canzone 14.

La vide in parte che'l tacere e bello.
Ruccellai, Le Api, 789.

Ch' a dire e brutto ed a tacerlo e bello.
\ And Berabo,

\ " Vie pill bello e il tacerle, clie il favellarne."

\ Gli. Asol. lib. 1.

i| V. 117. Electra.] The danshterof Atlas, and mother of DaiTlniiiis, tlie

p founder of Troy. See Virjj. jFm. b. viii. i;34. as referred to by Dant';- in
ij treatise " De Jlonarchia," lib. ii. "Electra, scilicet, nata maj^ni iionii.iis
•j regis Atlantis, lit de ambobus tcstinioninra reddit poeta noster in octavo
S ubi jEiieas ad Avandrnni sic ait


I "Dardanns Iliaerp," &c.

I V. 125. Julia.] The daughter of .Tuliiis C;T?sar, and wife of Poinpey.

i v. 126. The Soldan fierce.] Saladiu, or Salaheddiu, tlie rival of Rich-

ard Coiiir de Leon, See D'llcrbelot, Bibl Orient, and Knolles's Hist,
of the Turks, p. 57 to 7.3 ; and the Life of Saladin, by Bohao'edia Ebn
Shedad, jMiblished by Albert Sclmltcns, with a Latin translation. He is
introduced by Petrarch in the Triuin])li of Fame, c. ii.
v. 128. The master of the sapient thromj.]

Maestro di color die sanno.
Aristotle. — Petrarch assigns the first place to Plato. See Triumph of
Fame, c. iii.
Pulci, in his Morgante Maggiore, c. xviii. says,

Tu se'il maestro di color che sanno.
V. 132. Demorritus,

TF7io sets the ivorld at chance.]
Democritus, who maintained tlie world to have been formed by the
fortuitous concourse of atoms.

V. 140. Aviccji.] See D'llerbelot, Bibl. Orient, article Sina. He died
in 1050. Pulci here again imitates our poet :

Avicenna quel che il sentimento
Intese di Aristotile c i segreti,
Averrois che fece il gran coniento.

Morg. Mag. c. xxv.
V. 140. Him toho made

That commentary vast, Atterroes.]
Averroes, called by the Arabians Roschd, translated and commented
the works of Aristotle, According to Tirabosclii (Storia doUa Lett.

HELL. 865

Ital. t. V. 1. ii. c. ii. sect. 4) he was the source of modern pliiloso])liical
impiety. The critic quotes some passages from rctrarch (Seiiih 1. v.
ep. iii. et. Oper. v. ii. p. 114o) to sliow liow stroiij^ly such seiitiineuts
prevailed in the time ol that poet, l^y wiiom tliey were lield in horror
and detestation. He adds, tliat tliis fanatic admirer of Aristotle trans-
hited his writings with that felicity, whicli might he expected from one
who did not know a syllable of Greek, and who was therefore compelled
to avail himself of the unfaithful Arabic versions. D'Herbelot, on the
other liand, informs us, that " Averroes was the first who translated
Aristotle from Greek into Arabic, before tlie Jews had made their trans-
lation ; and tliat we had for a long time no other text of Ai'istotle, ex-
cept that of the Latin translation, which was made from this Arabic
version of thih great philosopher (Averroes), who afterwards added to it
a very ample commentary, of which Thomas Aquinas, and the other
scholastic writers, availed themselves, before the Greek originals of
Aristotle and liis commentators were known to us iu Europe." Accord-
ing to D'Herbelot, he died iu 1198 ; but Tiraboschi places that event
about 1206.


V. 6. Grinning ivith ghastly feature.'] Hence Milton :
Grinn'd horrible a ghastly smile.

P. L. b. ii. 845.
V. 46. As cranes.] This simile is imitated by Lorenzo de Medici, iu
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 tlieir due flight in varied ranks descried ;
And each with outstretch'd neck his rank maintains,
In marshal'd order through th' etliereal void.

Roscoe, v. i. c. v. p. 257. 4to edit.
Compare Homer. II. iii. 3. Virgil, ^neid. 1. x. 264, and Ruccellai, Le
Api, 942, and Dante's Purgatory, Canto XXIV. 63.
V. 96. The land.] Ravenna.
V. 99. Love, that in gentle heart is quicTcly learnt.]

Amor, ch' al cor gentil ratto s'apprende,
A line taken by Marino, Adone, c. cxli. st. 251.
V. 102. Love, that denial takes from none helov'd.]

Amor, ch' a null' amato amar perdona.
So Boccaccio, in his Filocopo. 1. 1.

Amore mai non perdonb I'amore a nullo amato.
And Pulci, in the Morgante Maggiore, c. iv.

E perche amor mal volontier perdona,
Che non sia al fin sempre amato clii ama.
Indeed many of the Italian poets have repeated this verse.
V. 105. Caina.] The place to which murderers are doomed.
V. 113. Francesca.] Francesca, daughter of Guido da Polenta, lord of
Ravenna, was given liy her father in marriage to Lanciotto, son of Jlala-
testa, lord of Rimini, a man of extraordinary courage, but deformed in
his person. His brother Paolo, who uuliappily possessed those graces


which tlie hushnml of Frniicosca wanted, cngagprl lior affections ; and
beinfj; talven in adiilttry, they were lioth put to death by the enraged
Lanciotto. See Notes to Canto XXVll. v. 4;{.

Tlie wliole of this i)assat,'e is alluded to by Pctravcli, in liis Trinniph of
Love, c. iii.

V. 118. iN'^o f/rcotcr grief than to remember days

Of joy, when mis'ry is ul hand .']

lniit;ited by Marino :

Che non lia doglia il niisero niapsiore,
Che ricordar la gioia entio il dolore.

Adone, c. xiv. st. 100.
And by Fortiguerra :

Kiniciiibrarc il ben pcrduto
Fa piu meschino lo presente stato.

Ricciurdetto, c. xi. st. 83.
Tlie original perhaps was in Boetius de Consol. Philosoph. "In onnii
adversitate fortiune infelicissinumi genus est iufortunii f uisse felicem et
non esse." 1. 2. \)v. 4.

V. 124. Luncvht.'] One of the Knights of the Round Table, and the
lover of Ginevra, or Guinever, celebrated in ronumce. The incident
alluded to seems to have made a strong impression on the imaginatiou
of Dante, who introduces it again, less happily, in the Paradise, Canto
V. 128. At one point.']

Questo quel punto fu, che sol mi vinse.

Tasso, II Torrisrnondo, a. i. s. 3.
V. 13G. And like a corpse fell to the groiind.]

E caddi, come corpo morto cade.
So Pulci :

E cadde come morto in terra cade.

Moryante Magf/oire, c. xxii.


V. 1. My sense reviving.']

Al tornar della mente, che si chinse,
Dinanzi alia pieta de' duo cognati.

Berni has made a sportive application of these lines, in his Orl. Inn. 1.
iii. c. viii. st. 1.

V. 21. That great worm.] So in Canto XXXIV. Lucifer is called
Th' abhorred v:orm, that boreth through the world.
Ariosto has imitated Dante :

Ch' al gran verme infernal mette la briglia,

Online Library1265-1321 Dante AlighieriThe Vision : or, Hell, Purgatory, and Paradise, of Dante Alighieri → online text (page 27 of 37)