The Divine Comedy

Front Cover
Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2012 - 336 pages
Purchase of this book includes free trial access to where you can read more than a million books for free. This is an OCR edition with typos. Excerpt from book: Another truth, which is obscure to me. 135 I wish to know if man can satisfy you For broken vows with other good deeds, so That in your balance they will not be light. Beatrice gazed upon me with her eyes Full of the sparks of love, and so divine, Mo That, overcome my power, I turned my back And almost lost myself with eyes downcast. CANTO V. If in the heat of love I flame upon thee Beyond the measure that on earth is seen, So that the valor of thine eyes I vanquish, Marvel thou not thereat; for this proceeds From perfect sight, which as it apprehends To the good apprehended moves its feet. Well I perceive how is already shining Into thine intellect the eternal light, That only seen enkindles always love; And if some other thing your love seduce, w 'T is nothing but a vestige of the same, 1ll understood, which there is shining through. Thou fain wouldst know if with another service For broken vow can such return be made As to secure the soul from further claim. is This Canto thus did Beatrice begin; And, as a man who breaks not off his speech, Continued thus her holy argument: The greatest gift that in his largess God Creating made, and unto his own goodness 20 Nearest conformed, and that which he doth prize Most highly, is the freedom of the will, Wherewith the creatures of intelligence Both all and only were and are endowed. Now wilt thou see, if thence thou reasonest, 21 The high worth of a vow, if it be made So that when thou consentest God consents; For, closing between God and man the compact, A sacrifice is of this treasure made, Such as I say, and made by its own act. a What can be rendered then as compensation ? Think'st thou to make good use of what thou 'st offered, With gains ...

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About the author (2012)

Born Dante Alighieri in the spring of 1265 in Florence, Italy, he was known familiarly as Dante. His family was noble, but not wealthy, and Dante received the education accorded to gentlemen, studying poetry, philosophy, and theology. His first major work was Il Vita Nuova, The New Life. This brief collection of 31 poems, held together by a narrative sequence, celebrates the virtue and honor of Beatrice, Dante's ideal of beauty and purity. Beatrice was modeled after Bice di Folco Portinari, a beautiful woman Dante had met when he was nine years old and had worshipped from afar in spite of his own arranged marriage to Gemma Donati. Il Vita Nuova has a secure place in literary history: its vernacular language and mix of poetry with prose were new; and it serves as an introduction to Dante's masterpiece, The Divine Comedy, in which Beatrice figures prominently. The Divine Comedy is Dante's vision of the afterlife, broken into a trilogy of the Inferno, Purgatory, and Paradise. Dante is given a guided tour of hell and purgatory by Virgil, the pagan Roman poet whom Dante greatly admired and imitated, and of heaven by Beatrice. The Inferno shows the souls who have been condemned to eternal torment, and included here are not only mythical and historical evil-doers, but Dante's enemies. The Purgatory reveals how souls who are not irreversibly sinful learn to be good through a spiritual purification. And The Paradise depicts further development of the just as they approach God. The Divine Comedy has been influential from Dante's day into modern times. The poem has endured not just because of its beauty and significance, but also because of its richness and piety as well as its occasionally humorous and vulgar treatment of the afterlife. In addition to his writing, Dante was active in politics. In 1302, after two years as a priore, or governor of Florence, he was exiled because of his support for the white guelfi, a moderate political party of which he was a member. After extensive travels, he stayed in Ravenna in 1319, completing The Divine Comedy there, until his death in 1321.

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