Dante : La Commedia

Dante Alighieri, 1265-1321


<p style='text-align: justify;'> Fifteenth century manuscript containing a number of works including the Commedia by Dante Alighieri (1265-1321) with a range of religious, literary and classical texts. The scribe Bartholomeo Landi de Landis da Prato, notary, recorded his identity in the explicit to the Commedia on <a dir='auto' href='' onclick='store.loadPage(353);return false;'>174r</a> and his translation of Cicero's De senectute on <a dir='auto' href='' onclick='store.loadPage(496);return false;'>245v</a>. The explicits are also dated: 29 June 1416 for the completion of the Commedia and 23 December 1426 for De senectute, providing evidence of over a decade of scribal activity on this manuscript.</p><p>In a contemporary binding, each of the 17 quinterni are glued and sewn to thin bands of parchment which bear some evidence of earlier manuscript use. Wide margins have been provided and frequently used for paratextual content such as glosses and comments. Many of these were probably copied from other manuscripts (Cossio, 'The Landi Dante Codex at Manchester', p.213). Glosses throughout Inferno and Purgatorio are predominantly in Latin, while those on Paradiso are largely in Italian.</p><p>Landi added a number of diagrams to his commentary, supporting a structural reading of the Commedia. Examples can be found on <a dir='auto' href='' onclick='store.loadPage(26);return false;'>10v</a> (a circle divided by a horizontal line, signifying the circle of the avaricious and prodigal), <a dir='auto' href='' onclick='store.loadPage(57);return false;'>26r</a> (a diagram of the Malebolge), <a dir='auto' href='' onclick='store.loadPage(188);return false;'>91v</a> (the mystic tree of Purgatorio XXII, with branches and fruits turned downwards) and <a dir='auto' href='' onclick='store.loadPage(282);return false;'>138v</a> (a representation of the cross and its quadrants in the heaven of Mars).</p><p>The Landi Dante (described by Cossio as the 'Codex Mancuniensis') had close links to the Manchester Dante Society, and was studied in detail by Cossio and Valgimigli, two of its founding members.</p>

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