Dante Plaque 9: Dante and Virgil are nearing the end of their journey through Hell. They find that the ninth and final circle of Hell is a vast plain of ice in which traitors are forever frozen. At the centre of this frozen plain sits the gigantic figure of Lucifer, frozen from the chest downward and chewing in each of his three mouths the worst sinners of all: Judas Iscariot, Brutus, and Cassius. While crossing the ice Dante kicks one of the frozen faces sticking out, only to discover that it is Bocca deli Abati whose treachery led to one of Florence’s greatest military defeats at the battle of Montaperti in 1260.
Weeping he cried out: ‘Why do you tread on me? /
If you have not come to increase the vengeance /
Of Montaperti, why do you molest me?’ /
…another called: ‘What is the matter, Bocca? /
Isn’t it enough for your jaws to chatter, /
Without yelping? What devil is biting you?’
Inferno, XXXII, 79-81 & 106-108
In Via dei Tavolini, where the houses of the Abati once stood.