e esteems him neither more nor less for having made a mistake of five years. Oddly enough, Voltaire adopts this alleged blunder of five years on the next page in saying that Dante died at the age of 56, though he still more oddly omits the undisputed date of his death (1321), which would have shown Bayle to be right.
The poet's descent is said to have been derived from a younger son of the great Roman family of the Frangipani, classed by the popular rhyme with the Orsini and Colonna:—
Colonna, Orsini, e Frangipani, Prendono oggi e pagano domani. That his ancestors had been long established in Florence is an inference from some expressions of the poet, and from their dwelling having been situated in the more ancient part of the city.
The most important fact of the poet's genealogy is, that he was of mixed race, the Alighieri being of Teutonic origin.
Dante was born, as he himself tells us,
Paradiso, XXII. when the sun was in the constellation Gemini, and it has been absurdly