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Monday, March 01, 2021

Dante’s descendants attempt to overturn Italian poet’s 1302 corruption charges

The Italian poet and writer's Divine Comedy remains one of the most canonical works but allegations of corruption against him reside simultaneously.

By: Lifestyle Desk | New Delhi |
February 2, 2021 11:28:30 am
According to a report in The Guardian, Sperello di Serego Alighieri, an astrophysicist, along with law professor Alessandro Traversi have collaborated to see if the iconic Dante’s 1302 sentencing can be reversed. (Source: Wikimedia Commons | Designed by Gargi Singh)

Dante Alighieri’s reputation has been both enduring and fraught with controversy. The Italian poet and writer’s Divine Comedy remains one of the most canonical works but allegations of corruption against him reside simultaneously. But his descendants are now trying to change that.

According to a report in The Guardian, Sperello di Serego Alighieri, an astrophysicist, along with law professor Alessandro Traversi have collaborated to see if the iconic 1302 sentencing of Dante can be reversed.

“They were political trials and the penalties of exile and death inflicted on Dante, my dear ancestor, are unjust and have never been cancelled as happened with Galileo Galilei,” Alighieri was quoted as saying to the Italian daily Corriere Della Sera, as per The Guardian. “And therefore, if the laws allow it, we will ask for a revision.”

“There were two sentences inflicted on Dante. The first was exile, the second was death and it will be interesting to understand whether in the light of the Florentine statutes of the time and the current legal principles the two judgments could be subject to revision,” Traversi was quoted as saying.

The same report gives context to the charges stating that Florence was divided between the Black and the White factions in the 14th century. The poet was part of the White Party. But when the Blacks assumed control of the city in 1301, Dante was accused of corruption and was punished with multiple things: a fine of 5,000 florins, banishment for two years, and permanent ban from public office.

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