Dante Alighieri was born in Florence in 1265 A.D. He is widely accepted as the first author who wrote in the everyday vernacular that soon evolved into modern Italian, as well as credited with the creation of Italy's most enduring literary work, The Divine Comedy
. Comprised of three separate volumes, the poem details a journey in the afterlife through L'inferno
(Purgatory), and Paradiso
(Paradise), and is as much a historical chronicle as it is a literary achievement. Written entirely after Dante's 1301 exile from the city, The Divine Comedy is a window into nearly every aspect of medieval history, theology, politics, art, and culture; in particular as it relates to Florence
. During the course of this three-hour Dante Tour in Florence, led by a scholar of Italian literature, we will follow Dante's path through the city, exploring the places and characters that inspired his masterpiece—and, by extension explore both the life of Dante Alighieri as a historical figure and The Divine Comedy as a work of fiction where Florence as a city plays a central role.
Dante Tour Florence
We usually begin at the Baptistery, where Dante himself was baptized and where he later took inspiration for writing his L'inferno, drawing from the building's Biblical mosaics depicting the Last Judgment. We will move from here to Dante's neighborhood, deep in the heart of medieval Florence, where we will find Dante's home and his local church. It was here that he first encountered Beatrice, his beloved muse and spiritual guide for whom he wrote The Divine Comedy.
Then and Now
Along the way, we will see where Dante's enemies lived and explore the innumerable tucked away locations important to Dante's tory: corners, side streets and piazzas where many of his characters came to life. We will also visit Palazzo della Lana, important during Dante's time, as the location of the Wool Guild, but which today serves as The Dante Society meeting place, as well as the Dante Library where scholars from around the world come to continue to study his over 700 year-old poem.