Dante, by R.W.B. Lewis


Dante, by R.W.B Lewis, is about his seeking, finding and defining himself at every turn in this literary history.  He becomes fascinated with the mythic Beatrice, the lyric poet obsessed with life and death, the grand master of dramatic narrative and allegory.

Lewis writes of Dante’s wandering the Tuscan hills to his time as a young soldier fighting for democracy, his love for his civic duties, his literary ambitions, his religion and for Beatrice who he considers.  We learn of the politics Florentine politics the led to the Dante’s banishment from his native city.

Dante as a person shows his dark feelings about those who persecute him where he uses the word Purgatorio to promise vengeance as the ultimate poetic justice and predicts their depravity will be exposed in the end.

Lewis has in a small book made the life of Dante a revealing and easy to read biography.

Quote by Dante

…….and thence we issued forth to see again the stars

The secret of getting things done is to act!

There is no greater sorrow Than to be mindful of the happy time In misery.

Do not be afraid; our fate Cannot be taken from us; it is a  Gift.

The path to paradise begins in hell .

The more a thing is perfect, the more it feels pleasure and pain.