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[17] the following inscription for it on his deathbed:
Jura monarchiae superos phlegethonta lacusque
lustrando cecini volverunt fata quousque
sed quia pars cessit melioribus hospita castris
auctoremque suum petiit felicior astris
hic claudor dantes patriis extorris ab oris
quem genuit parui florentia mater amoris.
Of which this rude paraphrase may serve as a translation:—

The rights of Monarchy, the Heavens, the Stream of Fire, the Pit,
In vision seen, I sang as far as to the Fates seemed fit;
But since my soul, an alien here, hath flown to nobler wars,
And, happier now, hath gone to seek its Maker 'mid the stars,
Here am I Dante shut, exiled from the ancestral shore,
Whom Florence, the of all least-loving mother, bore.

1 If these be not the words of Dante, what is internal evidence worth? The indomitably self-reliant man, loyal first of all to his most unpopular convictions (his very host, Guido, being a Guelph), puts his Ghibellinism (ura monarchice) in the front. The man whose whole

1 We have translated lacusque by ‘the Pit,’ as being the nearest English correlative. Dante probably meant by it the several circles of his Hell, narrowing, one beneath the other, to the centre. As a curious specimen of English we subjoin Professor de Vericour's translation: ‘I have sang the rights of monarchy; I have sang, in exploring them, the abode of God, the Phlegethon and the impure lakes, as long as destinies have permitted. But as the part of myself, which was only passing, returns to better fields, and happier, returned to his Maker, I, Dante, exiled from the regions of fatherland, I am laid here, I, to whom Florence gave birth, a mother who experienced but a feeble love.’ (The Life and Times of Dante, London, 1858, p. 208.)

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