The Exiled Dante's Hope for Reconciliation: Monarchia 3:16.16-18 (Critical Essay) The Exiled Dante's Hope for Reconciliation: Monarchia 3:16.16-18 (Critical Essay)

The Exiled Dante's Hope for Reconciliation: Monarchia 3:16.16-18 (Critical Essay‪)‬

Annali d'Italianistica 2002, Annual, 20

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Publisher Description

Anthony Cassell, in "The Exiled Dante's Hope for Reconciliation: Monarchia 3:16.16-18," provides a convincing explanation of a difficult passage of Dante's political treatise, which thus offers all exiled people, betwixt and between body and soul, an additional example of an exemplary conduct and interpretation of exile. When the long-exiled Dante found himself again having to assert his opinions on the separation and correlation of the priestly and imperial powers in the Monarchia, he knew that he was entering a controversy that had simmered in different guises for centuries and that he directly blamed for his own banishment from his native city. Although Dante placed his emphasis on an Aristotelian earthly happiness, he nevertheless followed St. Thomas Aquinas, and others before him, who had treated the blessedness of this life as ultimately ancillary to eternal blessedness. Accordingly, Dante reiterated similar caution in the wording of the universally accepted formulas in his last lines. The Poet, forced to wander and seek his shelter in strangers' lands, had always recognized the far greater importance of eternal blessedness, making its attainment the ineffable object and culmination of the last canticle of his Commedia, dedicated to the very friend on whose behalf he composed the Monarchia. Dante here records, in his waning exiled years, his simple, optimistic Christian conviction, that, despite the bitterly salted bread of implacable earthly tribulation, he viewed life on earth as blest, naturally, sacramentally, and directly, by a loving, omnipotent God. From a life of expulsion Dante writes both of unity and of his own ultimate usefulness and belonging. When in 1318 the long-exiled Dante found himself again having to assert his opinions on the separation and correlation of the priestly and imperial powers in the Monarchia, he knew that he was entering a controversy that had simmered in different guises for centuries and one that had been directly to blame for his own banishment from his native city. In 1302 Boniface VIII had machinated to send Charles of Valois into Florence on the pretense of making peace between the Black and White factions of the Guelph party; instead Charles connived with the Blacks, while they plundered the property of the Whites and drove them into exile. Dante, probably stranded in Rome as urgent Florentine ambassador to the Holy See on the White's behalf, was left in permanent proscription and exile. The Poet's spiritual devotion to the Church as the Body of Christ was only to increase, while his anger at the corporate body of the sacerdotium whose shepherds had become "rapaci lupi" exacerbated and perpetuated his isolation from the holy things and places he most loved.Foolhardy challengers to papal power ran the risk of Inquisition (Simonelli 303-21). But Dante's refuge in Ghibelline territories where papal power was ineffective enabled him to speak more freely about Church doctrine. He could even adopt the stridency of a psalmist and the imprecations of a prophet in his political letters: those ardent and cutting encyclicals of outrage he hurled as rebuttals to papal decretals, imitating and exaggerating their tone and their dependence upon biblical citations.

GENRE
Professional & Technical
RELEASED
2002
January 1
LANGUAGE
EN
English
LENGTH
52
Pages
PUBLISHER
Annali d'Italianistica, Inc.
SELLER
The Gale Group, Inc., a Delaware corporation and an affiliate of Cengage Learning, Inc.
SIZE
247.2
KB

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