big-dad

anonymous asked:

precalc sucks, tell us your top five favorite dante facts

  1. he came from a really big family– his dad alighiero (real creative, i know) was one of five sons of bellincione alighieri, all of whom had children themselves (including geri del bello, who was known mainly for causing a ruckus around town). his mom, who died before he turned ten, was gabriella dei abbati, also part of a large family (although it’s probable that her family didn’t play as large of a role in dante’s life, since alighiero remarried and had children by lapa di [last name i can’t spell] after she died). but anyway, dante grew up with three younger siblings and about 56348 cousins, and all the ridiculousness a family like that entails.
  2. he probably started writing when he was about eighteen, circulating poetry either anonymously or under a pseudonym, which was at the time the main way to get yourself out there. apparently he attracted the attention of guido cavalcanti, who was A Character. the cavalcanti were kennedy-style political royalty in florence, but guido was more of the lord byron type– dramatic, fashionable, beloved by Everyone Of High Society, ambiguously bisexual and for the moment not interested in politics. he’d made something of a name for himself as a poet in what was called the dulce stil novo, the “sweet new style” (side note, my FAVORITE descriptor), which is basically courtly love-poetry in the provencal model, sort of avant-garde Love With A Capital L. it’s all very 1960s. anyway, guido read dante’s poetry, realized that the new kid was more talented than anyone seemed to realize, and, being about ten years older and way more experienced, took him in in what seems to have been both an artistic and social (and MAYBE more depending on who ya ask and when) capacity. dante later refers to him as “my first friend,” which is 1. adorable and 2. a lil worrying when you consider that dante was eighteen or so when they met. jesus, dude, get a LIFE. (i say that with love.)
  3. i KNOW everyone knows the beatrice story but did you know that when dante was twelve or so, before his father died, he was betrothed to a lady named gemma di manetto de’ donati– basically irl catelyn tully. gemma was a member of the house of donati, who were super noble and super political but not as rich/influential as they used to be. think the julians when caesar was growing up. anyway, gemma’s cousins were forese, corso and piccarda de simone de’ donati. as a matter of fact they all show up in the divine comedy– corso’s in hell, forese’s in purgatory, piccarda’s in heaven. by all accounts gemma and dante were in love, but her family was definitely another matter: it’s probable that forese and dante had a relationship when they were living in florence together, and corso (besides being a targaryenesque arch-machiavellian who sold his sister into a marriage that eventually killed her and murdered a political enemy in broad daylight, then bribed the judges to acquit him) masterminded the november coup of 1301, which in addition to destroying part of the city (FIRE AND BLOOD, GUYS) saw dante exiled, nearly bankrupted, and most of his and gemma’s property seized by the newly authoritarian black-guelf state.
  4. moving on to a less miserable subject, dante participated in the last real guelf-ghibelline florentine conflict of the period, the battle of campaldino. exiled in 1260ish, the ghibellines of arezzo mounted an attack on florence, against the armies of the republic plus those of pisa, pistoia and a couple of other towns. oddly enough, leading the pistoian forces was corso donati himself, serving his term as podesta of the city. villani says that although the pistoian forces were supposed to remain in reserve until called upon, corso donati shouted to his men “if we lose, i will die in the battle with my fellow citizens; and if we conquer, let him that will come to us at pistoia to exact the penalty!” and charged the aretine flank, routing it and winning the day for the guelfs. which like. good GOD this man. but ANYWAY pertaining to the actual subject of this ask, dante served with the florentine cavalry and we don’t know much beyond that– but considering the picture we get from both people who knew him when he was young and his writing at the time, which is of a sensitive, delicate, cultivated poet, it’s interesting to note that that certainly wasn’t all he was.
  5. in the 1260s, the main body of notre dame cathedral was completed and the cathedral came into use; in 1311 or so, dante likely left italy and went to paris to study at the university and figure out what he wanted to do for the last two-thirds of the divine comedy. inferno had just been published, he was already something of a celebrity, and paris was the absolute best place to go when it came to philosophy (certainly better than where he’d gone to study after he finished secondary, the university of bologna). aquinas had died there about forty years earlier, and the days of abelard and heloise hadn’t been long before that. but anyway, he went only half a century or so after the completion of notre-dame, and it’s just cool to me to think that he was there, heard the bells, attended mass. Whom Else Here Loves Hunchback

I bet Reinhardt goes bird watching and it’s like, the one hobby of his that he doesn’t ask the young heroes to join in on because he thinks they’ll probably find it boring but D.Va wants to see what that ish is about