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750 years ago Dante Alighieri was born, the long shadow of his art, wisdom and insight still shapes and inspires much of Italian and European Culture. On 4 May 2015 a day of celebrations was held at the Italian Senate in the presence of Sergio Mattarella, the president of the Italian Republic and Cardinal Ravasi who is overseeing preparations for the seventh centenary of the death of the “Sommo Poeta” in 2021. Pope Francis sent a message recalling the appreciation given to Dante by Benedict XV and his famous Encyclical  In praeclara summorum, of 30 April 1921, Paul VI’s apostolic letter Altissimi cantus at the end of the Second Vatican Council, as well as other influences on the works of John Paul II and Benedict XVI.



The Pontifical Council for Culture, for the VII centenary of the death of Dante Alighieri in 2021, has set up a scientific organisational committee to prepare a series of events and initiatives to celebrate the memory of the Sommo Poeta.

The following are members: Prof. Marco Ariani (Univ. Roma 3), Prof. Luca Azzetta (Univ. Cattolica – Milano), Fr. Maurizio Bazzoni, Prof. Massimiliano Corrado (Univ. Federico II – Napoli), Prof.ssa Abetina Cortese (Pres. Centro Scaligere Studi Danteschi – Verona), Prof.ssa Teresa De Robertis (Univ. Firenze), Prof.ssa Lia Fava Guzzetta (LUMSA – Roma), Prof. Giuseppe Frasso (Univ. Cattolica – Milano), Fr. Ivo Laurentini (Centro Dantesco – Ravenna), Prof. Andrea Mazzucchi (Univ. Federico II – Napoli), Prof. Alberto Varvaro (Acc. Della Crusca / Acc. Dei Lincei – Roma/Napoli), Mons. Pasquale Iacobone (Department Arte e Fede, Pontifical Council for Culture, Holy See).

Italian speakers may wish to download this text of Cardinal Ravasi, with which he launched the initiative in his capacity as President of Rome's Casa di Dante :

A document prepared on the occasion of the Press Conference launching the initiative (in Italian)