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hindered not only from attending to the accuracy of the press, (which indeed the care of my Publisher rendered almost unnecessary,) but from collecting and putting in order the several corrections and additions, which I had occasionally noted with the purpose of introducing them into that edition.

A long interval of leisure may since havo enabled me to do more effectually what I vas before compelled to leave undone. In the hope of rendering the Life of Dante and the Notes on the Poem less imperfect, I have consulted most of the writers by whom my Author has been recently illustrated. Wherever an omission or an error in the translation has been pointed out to me, I have done my best to supply the one and to correct the other; and my obligations in all these instances are acknowledged in the Notes. Among those who have not thought a few hours thrown away in noticing such oversights, it is gratifying to me to mention the names of Mr. Carlyle, one of the most origi nal thinkers of our time; my long-experienced friend, Mr. Darley, one of our most genuine poets; and Mr. Lyell, my respected fellowlaborer in the mine of Dante. At an advanced age, I do not imagine myself capable of otherwise improving an attempt which, however dofective, has at least the advantage of having had my earlier days bestowed on it.

February, 1844


Dante,' a name abbreviated, as was the custom in those days, from Durante or Durando, was of a very ancient Florentine family. The first of his ancestors, concerning whom any thing certain is known, was Cacciaguida, a Florentine knight, who died fighting in the holy war, under the Emperor Conrad III. Cacciaguida had two brothers, Moronto and Eliseo, the former of whom is not recorded to have left any posterity; the latter is the head of the family of the Elisei, or perhaps (for it is doubtful which is the case) only transmitted to his descendants a name which he had himself inherited. From Cacciaguida himself were sprung the Alighieri, so called from one of his sons, who bore the appellation from his mother's family,as is affirmed by the Poet himself, under the person of Caccia.

A note by Salvini, on Muratori della Perf. Poes. Ital., lib lil. cap. 8.

· Leonardo Aretino, Vita di Dante.

3 Par. xv. He was born, as most have supposed, in 1106, and died about 1147. But Lombardi computes his birth to have happened about 1090. See note t) Par. xvi. 31. For what is known of his descendants till the birth of Dante, seo note to Par. xv. 86.

4 Vellutello, Vita di Dante. There is reason to suppose that she was the daughter of Aldigerio, who was a lawyer of Verona, and brother of one of the same name, bishop of that city, and author of an epistle addressed to his mother, a religious recluse, with the title of Tractatus Adalgeri Episc. ad Rosuvidam reclausam (or, ad Orismundam matrem inclusam) de Rebus moralibus See Cancellieri Osservazioni &c. Roma, 1818, p. 119.

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