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By Friedrich Nietzsche

Ainsi parlait Zarathoustra « Cette oeuvre est complètement à half. Ne parlons pas ici des poètes : peut-être n'y a-t-il jamais rien european qui soit d'une telle surabondance de strength. Ma suggestion du dionysiaque s'est faite ici motion d'éclat ; comparé à elle, tout autre agir humain apparaît misérable et limité. Qu'un Goethe, qu'un Shakespeare ne sauraient respirer un seul quick dans cette atmosphère de ardour et d'altitude, que Dante, auprès de Zarathoustra, ne soit qu'un croyant, et non quelqu'un qui begin par créer l. a. vérité, un esprit qui gouverne le monde, un destin -, que les poètes du Véda soient des prêtres et pas même dignes de dénouer les chaussures de Zarathoustra, voilà qui n'est encore qu'une litote et ne donne aucune idée de los angeles distance, de l. a. solitude azuréenne où vit cette oeuvre » (Nietzsche, Ecce Homo, « Pourquoi j'écris de si bons livres »).

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CANTO XXVIII. They arrive in the ninth gulf, where the sowers of scandal, schismatics, and heretics, are seen with their limbs miserably maimed or divided in different ways. Among these the Poet finds Mohammed, Piero da Medicina, Curio, Mosca, and Bertrand de Born. CANTO XXIX. Dante, at the desire of Virgil, proceeds onward to the bridge that crosses the tenth gulf, from whence he hears the cries of the alchemists and forgers, who are tormented therein; but not being able to discern anything on account of the darkness, they descend the rock, that bounds this the last of the compartments in which the eighth circle is divided, and then behold the spirits who are afflicted by divers plagues and diseases.

Journeying along the pier, which crosses the sand, they are now so near the end of it as to hear the noise of the stream falling into the eighth circle, when they meet the spirits of three military men; who judging Dante, from his dress, to be a countryman of theirs, entreat him to stop. He complies, and speaks with them. The two Poets then reach the place where the water descends, being the termination of this third compartment in the seventh circle; and here Virgil having thrown down into the hollow a cord, wherewith Dante was girt, they behold at that signal a monstrous and horrible figure come swimming up to them.

Plato was virtually unknown during Dante舗s time, except for an incomplete Latin translation of the Timaeus. The emergence of Plato as a rival for Aristotle would not occur until the Medici family of fifteenth-century Florence sponsored the publication of Latin translations of the entire body of Plato舗s works. In addition to his profound knowledge of Christian philosophy and theology, Dante had a familiarity with the Bible that was extensive for his time, an era when most Catholics may have only heard scripture cited in sermons, or read to them out loud during the celebration of the Mass, or even depicted in narrative fresco painting and tempera altar pieces in the churches.

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