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Open without impediment it flew.

« Outcasts of heav'n! O abject race and scorn’d!” 90
Began he on the horrid grunsel standing,
" Whence doth this wild excess of insolence
Lodge in you? wherefore kick you ’gainst that will
Ne'er frustrate of its end, and which so oft
Hath laid on you enforcement of your pangs? 95
What profits at the fays to but the horn ?
Your Cerberus, if ye remember, hence
Bears still, peeld of their hair, his throat and maw.”

This said, he turn’d back o'er the filthy way,
And syllable to us spake none, but wore

The semblance of a man by other care
Beset, and keenly press'd, than thought of him
Who in his presence stands. Then we our steps
Toward that territory mov'd, secure
After the hallow'd words. We unoppos’d

There enter'd; and my mind eager to learn
What state a fortress like to that might hold,
I soon as enter'd throw mine eye around,
And see on every part wide-stretching space
Replete with bitter pain and torment ill.

Ås where Rhone stagnates on the plains of Arles,
Or as at Pola, near Quarnaro's gulf,
That closes Italy and laves her bounds,
The place is all thick spread with sepulchres ;
So was it here, save what in horror here

Excell'd: for 'midst the graves were scattered flames,
Wherewith intensely all throughout they burn'd,
That iron for no craft there hotter needs.

Their lids all hung suspended, and beneath
From them forth issu'd lamentable moans,

Such as the sad and tortur'd well might raise.

I thus : “ Master! say who are these, interr’d
Within these vaults, of whom distinct we hear
The dolorous sighs ?” He answer thus return’d :
“The arch-heretics are here, accompanied

By every sect their followers; and much more,
Than thou believest, tombs are freighted : like
With like is buried; and the monuments

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Are different in degrees of heat.” This said,
He to the right hand turning, on we pass'd
Betwixt the afflicted and the ramparts high.



Now by a secret pathway we proceed,
Between the walls, that hem the region round,
And the tormented souls : my master first,
I close behind his steps.

“Virtue supreme !
I thus began; “who through these ample orbs

In circuit lead'st me, even as thou will'st,
Speak thou, and satisfy my wish. May those,
Who lie within these sepulchres, be seen ?
Already all the lids are rais'd, and none
O’er them keeps watch.” He thus in answer spake 10

They shall be closed all, what-time they liere
From Josaphat return'd shall come, and bring
Their bodies, which above they now have left.
The cemetery on this part obtain
With Epicurus all his followers,

15 Who with the body make the spirit die. Here therefore satisfaction shall be soon Both to the question ask'd, and to the wish, Which thou conceal'st in silence." I replied : “I keep not, guide belov'd! from thee my heart

20 Secreted, but to shun vain length of words, A lesson erewhile taught me by thyself.”

“O Tuscan! thou who through the city of fire Alive art passing, so discreet of speech! Here please thee stay awhile. Thy utterance

25 Declares the place of thy nativity To be that noble land, with which perchance I too severely dealt.” Sudden that sound Forth issu'd from a vault, whereat in fear I somewhat closer to my leader's side

30 Approaching, he thus spake: “What dost thou ? Turn. Lo, Farinata, there! who hath himself Uplifted : from his girdle upwards all


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Expos'd behold him.” On his face was mine
Already fix'd; his breast and forehead there

Erecting, seem'd as in high scorn he held
E'en hell. Between tlie sepulchres to him
My guide thrust me with fearless hands and prompt,
This warning added : “See thy words be clear!”

He, soon as there I stood at the tomb's foot, 40
Ey'd me a space, then in disdainful mood
Address'd me: Say, what ancestors were thine?”

I, willing to obey him, straight reveald
The whole, nor kept back aught: whence he, his brow
Somewhat uplifting, cried : “Fiercely were they 45
Adverse to me, my party, and the blood
From whence I sprang: twice therefore I abroad
Scatter'd them.” “Though driv'n out, yet they each time
From all parts,” answer'd I, “ return'd; an art
Which yours have shown, they are not skill'd to learn."
Then, peering forth from the unclosed jaw,

Rose from his side a shade, high as the chin,
Leaning, methought, upon its knees uprais’d.
It look'd around, as eager to explore
If there were other with me; but perceiving

That fond imagination quench’d, with tears
Thus spake: "If thou through this blind prison go'st.
Led by thy lofty genius and profound,
Where is my son? and wherefore not with thee?”
I straight replied : “Not of myself I come,

By him, who there expects me, through this clime
Conducted, whom perchance Guido thy son
Had in contempt." Already had his words
And mode of punishment read me his name,
Whence I so fully answer'd.

He at once
Exclaim'd, up starting, “How! said'st thou he had?
No longer lives he? Strikes not on his eye
The blessed daylight ?” Then of some delay
I made ere my reply aware, down fell
Supine, not after forth appear'd he more.

Meanwhile the other, great of soul, near whom
I yet was station'd, chang'd not count'nance stern,
Nor mor’d the neck, nor bent his ribbed side.

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“And if," continuing the first discourse,

They in this art,” he cried, “small skill have shown, 75 That doth torment me more e'en than this bed. But not yet fifty times shall be relum’d Her aspect, who reigns here Queen of this realm, Ere thou shalt know the full weight of that art. So to the pleasant world mayst thou return,

80 As thou shalt tell me, why in all their laws, Against my kin this people is so fell?”

“The slaughter and great havoc," I replied, “ That colour'd Arbia's flood with crimson stainTo these impute, that in our hallow'd dome

85 Such orisons ascend.” Sighing he shook The head, then thus resum’d: “In that affray I stood not singly, nor without just cause Assuredly should with the rest have stirr’d; But singly there I stood, when by consent

90 Of all, Florence had to the ground been raz'd, The one who openly forbad the deed.”

“So may thy lineage find at last repose, ” I thus adjur'd him, “as thou solve this knot, Which now involves my mind. If right I hear, 95 Ye seem to view beforehand, that which time Leads with him, of the present uninform'd."

“We view, as one who hath an evil sight,” He answer'd, “plainly, objects far remote: So much of his large spendour yet imparts

100 The' Almighty Ruler; but when they approach Or actually exist, our intellect Then wholly fails, nor of your

human state Except what others bring us know we rught. Hence therefore mayst thou understand, that all 105 Our knowledge in that instant shall expire, When on futurity the portals close.”

Then conscious of my fault, and by remorse Smitten, I added thus: “Now shalt thou

say To him there fallen, that his offspring still

110 Is to the living join'd ; and bid him know, That if from answer silent I abstain’d, 'Twas that my thought was occupied intent

Upon that error, which thy help bath solvid."
But now my master summoning me back

115 I heard, and with more eager haste besought The spirit to inform me, who with him Partook his lot. He answer thus return’d: “ More than a thousand with me here are laid. Within is Frederick, second of that name,

120 And the Lord Cardinal, and of the rest I speak not.” He, this said, from sight withdrew. But I my steps towards the ancient bard Reverting, ruminated on the words Betokening me such ill. Onward he mov'd,

125 And thus in going question’d : “Whence the amaze That holds thy senses wrapt?” I satisfied The' inquiry, and the sage enjoin'd me straight : “Let thy safe memory store what thou hast heard To thee importing harm; and note thou this,"

130 With his rais’d finger bidding me take heed, “ When thou shalt stand before her gracious beam, Whose bright eye all surveys, she of thy life The future tenour will to thee unfold.”

Forthwith he to the left hand turn'd his feet: 135 We left the wall, and tow'rds the middle space Went by a path, that to a valley strikes ; Which e’en thus high exhal'd its noisome steam.



Upon the utmost verge of a high bank,
By craggy rocks environ'd round, we came,
Where woes beneath more cruel yet were stow'd :
And here to shun the horrible excess
Of fetid exhalation, upward cast
From the profound abyss, behind the lid
Of a great monument we stood retir’d,
Whereon this scroll I mark'd : “I have in charge
Pope Anastasius, whom Photinus drew
From the right path.”—Ere our descent behoves
We make delay, that somewhat first the sense,


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