previous next

Chapter 20: Dante

We come now to that great task which Longfellow, after an early experiment, had dropped for years, and which he resumed after his wife's death, largely for the sake of an absorbing occupation. Eighteen years before, November 24, 1843, he had written to Ferdinand Freiligrath that he had translated sixteen cantos of Dante, and there seems no reason to suppose that he had done aught farther in that direction until this new crisis. After resuming the work, he translated for a time a canto as each day's task, and refers to this habit in his sonnet on the subject, where he says—

I enter here from day to day,
And leave my burden at this minster gate.

The work was not fully completed until 1866, and was published in part during the following year.

The whole picture of the manner in which the work was done has long been familiar to the literary world, including the pleasing glimpse of

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.

hide Places (automatically extracted)

View a map of the most frequently mentioned places in this document.

Download Pleiades ancient places geospacial dataset for this text.

hide People (automatically extracted)
Sort people alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a person to search for him/her in this document.
Dante (2)
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1)
Ferdinand Freiligrath (1)
hide Dates (automatically extracted)
Sort dates alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a date to search for it in this document.
1866 AD (1)
November 24th, 1843 AD (1)
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: