sovino was the first to confirm Boccaccio's statement by the authority of the poet himself, basing his argument on the first verse of the Inferno,—
Nel mezzo del cammin di nostra vita; the average age of man having been declared by the Psalmist to be seventy years, and the period of the poet's supposed vision being unequivocally fixed at 1300.
Arrivabene, however, is wrong.
Boccaccio makes precisely the same reckoning in the first note of his Commentary (Bocc.
Comento, etc., Firenze, 1844, Vol.
I. pp. 32, 33). Leonardo Aretino and Manetti add their testimony to that of Boccaccio, and 1265 is now universally assumed as the true date.
Dict. Phil., art. Dante. nevertheless, places the poet's birth in 1260, and jauntily forgives Bayle (who, he says, écrivait à Rotterdam currente calamo pour son libraire) for having been right, declaring that he esteems him neither more nor less for having made a mistake of five years. Oddly enough, Voltaire adopts this alleged blund