The animal book of the Divine Comedy

Leonardo Canova, professor on the College of Pisa, undertook the primary systematic and full examine of the existence of the animal kingdom in Dante’s masterpiece..

The variety of animals that populate Dante’s Comedy universe is awfully staggering: wolves, sheep, lambs, bees, fireflies, snakes, eagles, in addition to mythological animals such because the phoenix or the griffin. newly launched, Leonardo Canova’s “Onomasiological Bestiary of the Comedy” (Franco Cesati Editore, 2022) is the primary systematic and full examine of the existence of the animal world in Dante’s masterpiece.Each linguistically and symbolically.

Leonardo Canova, professor on the College of Pisa, with whom he collaborated on the challenge Hypermedia Dante Community and as a analysis fellow on the Opera del Vocabolario Italiano (OVI-CNR), he started Dante’s analysis on the “zoo” throughout his doctorate as a professor scholar on the College of Pisa. Fabrizio Franceschini. His thesis, which was awarded among the many high 14 of the College in 2021, is now a e book.

“Even earlier than Dante, there have been many visions of the afterlife in late antiquity and later within the Center Ages, but when one would possibly say so, Those that went to Hell earlier than Dante had seen far fewer animals.Just a few worms, some bugs, some snakes that eat the damned: positively not that sort,” Canova says.

“Though it’s accepted that the excellence between actual and implausible animals was fairly blurred within the Center Ages, and that, for instance, the Phoenix was believed to exist, and fanciful information about animals was broadly unfold, these are largely actual animals. Goat or beaver anyway,” he continues. Canova, that of animals then is one. utterly inhomogeneous presence: there may be extra in itHellrather less Purgatory and even much less Paradisehowever in any case, they’re in all places from the primary canto with the three festivals to the thirty-first canto of the third canton.the final – extraordinary – the place the animal picture exhibits the hardworking bees of gratitude, through which the poet summarizes an exquisite fresco from the angelic hosts they flower among the many petals of the honest rose”.

Canova counted a complete of about ninety totally different animals populating the realm. Comedy and 600 if prolonged references to varied components of the physique, akin to wings or legs, that are repeated over 200 within the textual content. In his e book, every asset is filed and analyzed intimately, following the method of the traditional animal books.. The 177 entries embrace, for instance, “small animals dwelling near people”, “animals of discipline and forest”, birds of prey, aquatic and farm birds, fish, reptiles, useful and dangerous bugs, crustaceans and mollusks.

Canova concludes that “the try is to discover Dante’s in depth cultural background and the complicated semantic stratigraphies underlying every zoological entity, to reconstruct, on a case-by-case foundation, the complicated meanings entrusted to particular person entities in medieval tradition, to evaluate to what extent and to what extent.” data can facilitate the evaluation of Dante’s textual content”.

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