“The darkest places in hell are reserved for those who maintain their neutrality in times of moral crisis.” – Dante Alighieri

Full Name : Durante degli Alighieri

Nationality : Florentine

Born : 1265 in Florence, Italy

Died : September 1321 in Ravenna, Italy

Poems : Divine Comedy, Paradiso, La Vita Nuova, Inferno, The Divine Comedy: Purgatory

Movies : Dante’s Inferno: An Animated Epic, L’Inferno, 13 Cantos of Hell and many more

Dante Alighieri was one of the greatest poets of his generation in Italy. He practised through the late middle ages and the Early Renaissance. Dante is known to have defied the usual norms of writing in Latin in those times and did some of his poems in vernacular including the Tuscan dialect.

7 amazing facts about Dante Alighieri :

1. Role in Italian Literature

Dante is one of the important figures in Italian literature and helped in its establishment. He set the pace for others to follow especially writing poems in vernacular. Other great poet like Petrarch and Boccaccio followed his footsteps in that regard. He is also the first to have used the interlocking three-line rhyme scheme.

2. The Divine Comedy

Dante’s poem Divine Comedy is considered one the most important poem of the Middle Age. It is regarded as the greatest literary work in the Italian language. It was set on the Christian perspective on humankind’s journey through life and eternity.

3. The Three Crown

Dante is referred to as il Sommo Poeta “the Supreme Poet” in Italy. Also along with Boccaccio and Petrarch, they are known as the Three Crown or Three Fountain. This is due to the vital role they played in the Italian literature.

4. He Was Exile

In 1302, Dante and many others of the White Guelphs were sentenced into exile from Florence for various charges. Dante was accused of corruption and was asked to a fine, which he refused. With that, he was sentenced to perpetual exile from Florence. It was in 2008, that the city of Florence reversed his sentence.

5. Recognition

In 1913, he was named after Italy’s first dreadnought battleship in his honour. Artists from Pisa University and engineers at the University of Bologna made a model of his face in 2007. After 700 years of his death, the Municipality of Florence in 2008, officially apologized for exiling him.

6. His Love For Beatrice Portinari

Dante fell in love at fight sight with a woman named Beatrice Portinari, daughter of Folco Portinari. According to him, he met Beatrice just twice but his love for her became eternal. With this, he mentioned Beatrice in most of his works.

7. Year of Birth Unknown

The date of birth of Dante has been speculative. He is believed to have been born around 1265 according to information in his autobiography. Some clues are also picked from his works like Inferno and Divine Comedy.