Purgatorio Canto VI

Purgatorio 6

My gentle guide began: ‘Mantua’
leaped toward him from his place, saying:
‘O Mantuan, I am Sordello of your city.’
And the two of them embraced.

vv. 72-75

Ante-Purgatory. – More spirits who had deferred repentance till they were overtaken by a violent death. – Efficacy of prayer. – Sordello. – Apostrophe to Italy.

Canto VI begins with an extended simile comparing Dante to the winner of a dice game; the souls crowd him as if trying to get a bit of the winnings. To free himself of them, he promises that he will try to get people on Earth to pray for them. Dante lists more of the souls in the throng, and as soon as he is free of them, he asks Dante about a line from the Aeneid, which seems to contradict these souls’ belief in the power of prayer to shorten their time in Purgatory. Virgil explains that “in one instant love’s bright fire” can work to change their punishment; anyway, he continues, Beatrice will clear any doubts up. Soon they see Sordello, who Virgil says will show them the way. Sordello does not speak until Virgil mentions Mantua, his birthplace. The two talk excitedly about the city, and Dante shifts gears to address contemporary Italy. He criticizes it for remaining in constant state of war and not letting “Caesar occupy the saddle;” he turns to the Holy Roman Emperor, “German Albert,” and chastises him for “abandon[ing] her / now that she’s untamed and wild.” He asks Albert to “come and see” Italy. Finally, he ironically lambasts Florence for its pride and inconstancy.

Riassunto in inglese tratto da https://www.gradesaver.com/divine-comedy-purgatorio

Canto adopted by Centro Dantesco dei Frati Minori Conventuali di Ravenna

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