A charming way to convey the genesis of ideas or desires, likening them to the urge of bees to make honey. They are already buzzing about our garden, prodding nooks and crannies for suitable nests.

‘It follows that the human intellect

Can’t have the first idea of how we know

About our first ideas and how they came

To us, or how desire finds objects so

Alluring. They’re inside you, just the same

As the honey-making urge is in the bees.’

‘Però, là onde vegna lo intelletto

delle prime notizie, omo non sape,

e de’ primi appetibili l’affetto,

che sono in voi, sì come studio in ape

di far le mele…’

See also our illustrated quote-rich celebration of Dante’s Divine Comedy in Clive James’ superb translation. 


Source: Dante,The Divine Comedy (Purgatory, Canto 18), trans. Clive James (New York: Liveright Publishing, 2013), p. 266


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