th a sense of the nothingness of this world's goods possible only to the rich, and a knowledge of man possible only to the poor.
The few well-ascertained facts of Dante's life may be briefly stated.
In 1274 occurred what we may call his spiritual birth, the awakening in him of the imaginative faculty, and of that profounder and more intense consciousness which springs from the recognition of beauty through the antithesis of sex. It was in that year that he first saw Beatrice Portinari.
In 1289 he was present at the battle of Campaldino, fighting on the side of the Guelphs, who there utterly routed the Ghibellines, and where, he says characteristically enough, I was present, not a boy in arms, and where I felt much fear, but in the end the greatest pleasure, from the various changes of the fight.
Letter of Dante, now lost, cited by Aretino. In the same year he assisted at the siege and capture of Caprona.
Inferno, XXI. 94. In 1290 died Beatrice, married to Simone dei Bardi, pr