Dante and Islam

Dante and Islam

Jan M. Ziolkowski

Print publication date: 2015

ISBN: 9780823263868

Publisher: Fordham University Press


Dante put Muhammad in one of the lowest circles of Hell. At the same time, the medieval Christian poet placed several Islamic philosophers much more honorably in Limbo. Furthermore, it has long been suggested that for much of the basic framework of the Divine Comedy Dante was indebted toapocryphal traditions about a “night journey” taken by Muhammad. Dante scholars have increasingly returned to the question of Islam to explore the often surprising encounters among religious traditions that the Middle Ages afforded. This collection of essays works through what was known of the Qur’an and of Islamic philosophy and science in Dante's day and explores the bases for Dante's images of Muhammad and Ali. It further compels us to look at key instances of engagement among Muslims, Jews, and Christians.

Table of Contents

Front Matter


Jan M. Ziolkowski

Approaches to a Controversy

Dante and Islam

Vicente Cantarino

Dante and Islamic Culture

Maria Corti†

Dante and Knowledge of the Qur’an

Images of Islamic Philosophy and Learning in Dante

Dante and the Falasifa

Gregory B. Stone

Falconry as a Transmutative Art

Daniela Boccassini

Images of Muḥammad in Dante

Dante’s Muḥammad

Maria Esposito Frank

Muḥammad in Hell

Karla Mallette

Islam in Dante’s Italy

Dante and the Three Religions

Giorgio Battistoni

The Last Muslims in Italy

David Abulafia†