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Verona joins in the grand commemoration of Dante’s legacy

Verona joins in the grand commemoration of Dante’s legacy

Next year is the 700th anniversary of the great poet’s passing

Dante Alighieri was arguably the first Renaissance poet and one of the greatest cultural icons of Italy. His name and life are especially linked with the Tuscan city of Florence, where one can visit his birth house. Next year, however, on the occasion of the 700th anniversary of his death, Verona and Ravenna have also prepared their own calendar of events for the whole year.

It is the opinion of the Veronese authorities that his legacy should be associated with more than just Florence. There is a good reason for that since Verona became Dante’s second home between 1312-1318 when he was exiled from his native city.

Have you read the ‘The Divine Comedy’?

Dante was involved in some serious political troubles in Florence which caused him to seek refuge in Verona, upon the invitation of the local lord and strongman Cangrande I dela Scalla. The poet worked on editing earlier parts of his monumental poem, and largely wrote the last part called Paradise while he lived in that city.

Veronese officials think it is high time that this local historical connection received wider recognition.

A century ago, for the 600th anniversary of Dante's death, Verona was not one of Dante's cities. Today, with great pride, we re-establish the role that the Scaligera land had in the life of the Supreme Poet. Together with Florence and Ravenna we will celebrate this anniversary which has an international cultural value,” said Federico Sboarina, the Mayor of Verona.

He added: “A very important anniversary, therefore, for our country but also for the rest of the world, because Dante is a reference figure for all literature, he is an icon on a planetary level. And our city was part of that history, of that life, it left a tangible mark on Dante's immense artistic heritage. Our city will be the center of attention for a whole year, and the level of cultural proposals testifies to Dante's role in the history of our literature and culture, but also in the popular life of the time”. 

It is already clear that next year, at least culturally-speaking will be a big one for Italy. And it is possible that tourists will think of Verona not only as of the City of Romeo and Juliet, but also as Dante’s second home.

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