Divine Comedy, Cary's Translation, Complete eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 602 pages of information about Divine Comedy, Cary's Translation, Complete.

The verb “muover"’ is used in the same signification in the Inferno, Canto xviii. 21.

Cosi da imo della roccia scogli

—­from the rock’s low base Thus flinty paths advanc’d.

In neither place is actual motion intended to be expressed.

v. 52.  That from unbidden. office awes mankind.] Seo 2 Sam.  G.

v 58.  Preceding.] Ibid. 14, &c.

v. 68.  Gregory.] St. Gregory’s prayers are said to have delivered Trajan from hell.  See Paradise, Canto xx. 40.

v. 69.  Trajan the Emperor.  For this story, Landino refers to two writers, whom he calls “Heunando,” of France, by whom he means Elinand, a monk and chronicler, in the reign of Philip Augustus, and “Polycrato,” of England, by whom is meant John of Salisbury, author of the Polycraticus de Curialium Nugis, in the twelfth century.  The passage in the text I find to be nearly a translation from that work, 1. v. c. 8.  The original appears to be in Dio Cassius, where it is told of the Emperor Hadrian, lib.  I xix. [Greek here] 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 him, ‘then reign no longer’ he turned about, and heard her cause.”

v. 119.  As to support.] Chillingworth, ch.vi. 54. speaks of “those crouching anticks, which seem in great buildings to labour under the weight they bear.”  And Lord Shaftesbury has a similar illustration in his Essay on Wit and Humour, p. 4. s. 3.


v. 1. 0 thou Mighty Father.] The first four lines are borrowed by Pulci, Morg.  Magg. c. vi.  Dante, in his ‘Credo,’ has again versified the Lord’s prayer.

v. 58.  I was of Latinum.] Omberto, the son of Guglielino Aldobrandeseo, Count of Santafiore, in the territory of Sienna His arrogance provoked his countrymen to such a pitch of fury against him, that he was murdered by them at Campagnatico.

v. 79.  Oderigi.] The illuminator, or miniature painter, a friend of Giotto and Dante

v. 83.  Bolognian Franco.] Franco of Bologna, who is said to have been a pupil of Oderigi’s.

v. 93.  Cimabue.] Giovanni Cimabue, the restorer of painting, was born at Florence, of a noble family, in 1240, and died in 1300.  The passage in the text is an illusion to his epitaph: 

Credidit ut Cimabos picturae castra tenere,
Sic tenuit vivens:  nunc tenet astra poli.

v. 95.  The cry is Giotto’s.] In Giotto we have a proof at how early a period the fine arts were encouraged in Italy.  His talents were discovered by Cimabue, while he was tending sheep for his father in the neighbourhood of Florence, and he was afterwards patronized by Pope Benedict xi and Robert King of Naples, and enjoyed the society and friendship of Dante, whose likeness he has transmitted to posterity.  He died in 1336, at the age of 60.

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