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La perfidia dei Greci secondo Virgilio, Servio, Amato di Montecassino e Dante

Wenskus Otta
Articolo Immagine
Eikasmos N. XXXI 2020

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There is no valid reason to doubt that Dante’s Ulysses is tormented in the eighth circle of Hell for the reasons enumerated by Dante’s Virgilio. A remark by Amato di Montecassino shows that he saw in the “treacherous” Byzantine Greeks the direct descendants of the Greeks who captured Troy by what he considers treason. However, Dante’s Ulysses is more noble than Virgil’s, which is probably why Dante does not mention Palamedes, a victim of Ulysses’s jealousy according to a considerable part of the Classical and the Medieval tradition. As for the last voyage of Dante’s Ulysses, Dante presents it as misguided but not sinful. There is no evidence that sailing through the Straits of Gibraltar was considered a violation of divine will either in Antiquity or in the Middle Ages.