This Week in Christian History: Dante Exiled, Pastor Murdered, Martin Luther's Birthday

Dante Exiled — November 6, 1315

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(Photo: Public Domain)A 15th century portrait of the famous Italian writer Dante Alighieri (1265-1321).

This week marks the anniversary of when famed Italian poet Dante Alighieri fled from Florence after being sentenced to death by his political enemies.

The author of the popular and culturally influential Divine Comedy, Dante was deeply involved in Florentine politics, which included opposition to Pope Boniface VIII having too much power over the city.

"Checkmated by the cunning Pope Boniface VIII, he was put on trial in Florence for taking bribes, and when he failed to show up to answer the charges he was condemned to be burned at the stake. He went into exile and never saw his native city again," noted the Independent.

Reconciliation took a while. About 700 years later, in 2008, the city of Florence's cultural committee voted 19–5 to revoke the exile and to grant a local honor for Dante.

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