v. 117. The hat.] The cardinal’s hat.
v. 118. Cephas.] St. Peter.
v. 119 The Holy Spirit’s vessel.] St. Paul. See Hell, Canto ii. 30.
v. 130. Round this.] Round the spirit of Pietro Damiano.
v. 14. The vengeance.] Beatrice, it is supposed, intimates the approaching fate of Boniface viii. See Purgatory, Canto xx. 86.
v. 36. Cassino.] A castle in the Terra di Lavoro.
v. 38. I it was.] “A new order of monks, which in a manner absorbed all the others that were established in the west, was instituted, A.D. 529, by Benedict of Nursis, a man of piety and reputation for the age he lived in.” Maclaine’s Mosheim, Eccles. Hist. v. ii. cent. vi. p. 2. ch. 2 — 6.
v. 48. Macarius.] There are two of this name enumerated by Mosheim among the Greek theologians of the fourth century, v. i. cent. iv p. 11 ch. 2 — 9. In the following chapter, 10, it is said, “Macarius, an Egyptian monk, undoubtedly deserves the first rank among the practical matters of this time, as his works displayed, some few things excepted, the brightest and most lovely portraiture of sanctity and virtue.”
v. 48. Romoaldo.] S. Romoaldo, a native of Ravenna, and the founder of the order of Camaldoli, died in 1027. He was the author of a commentary on the Psalms.
v. 70. The patriarch Jacob.] So Milton, P. L. b. iii. 510: The stairs were such, as whereon Jacob saw Angels ascending and descending, bands Of guardians bright.
v. 107. The sign.] The constellation of Gemini.
v. 130. This globe.] So Chaucer, Troilus and Cresseide, b. v,
And down from thence fast he gan avise
This little spot of earth, that with the sea
Embraced is, and fully gan despite
This wretched world.
Compare Cicero, Somn. Scip. “Jam ipsa terra ita mihi parva visa est.” &c. Lucan, Phar 1. ix. 11; and Tasso, G. L. c. xiv. st, 9, 10, 11.
v. 140. Maia and Dione.] The planets Mercury and Venus.
v. 11. That region.] Towards the south, where the course of the sun appears less rapid, than, when he is in the east or the west.
v. 26. Trivia.] A name of Diana.
v. 26. Th’ eternal nymphs.] The stars.
v. 36. The Might.] Our Saviour
v. 71. The rose.] The Virgin Mary.
v. 73. The lilies.] The apostles.
v. 84. Thou didst exalt thy glory.] The diving light retired upwards, to render the eyes of Dante more capable of enduring the spectacle which now presented itself.
v. 86. The name of that fair flower.] The name of the Virgin.
v. 92. A cresset.] The angel Gabriel.
v. 98. That lyre.] By synecdoche, the lyre is put for the angel