"When they found/their way up to the tip, imparting to it/the same vibration given them in their passage/over the tongue of the concealed sad spirit,/we heart it say 'O you at home I aim/...I too was of those hills between Urbino/and the fold from which the Tiber springs to birth." (Inferno, XXVII:15-30)
KEY CHARACTERS & ILLUSIONS:
Guido da Montefeltro: a Lord of Romagna & one of the sinners that Dante meets and talks to about Romagna. He & Dante also talk about Montefeltro's life and how Boniface VIII convinces him to sin.
Ulysses: After telling his story to Dante & Virgil, he is silent, so Virgil condescends to let him leave.
Sicilian bull: a metal bull was used as an instrument of torture in the sixth century B.C. Victims were placed inside the metal bull and then roasted to death.
the Great Priest: another name for Boniface VIII, so called as Pope.
Why are these allusions presenT? How do they function?
Ulysses is present in the beginning of the canto, and his telling of his story to Dante and Virgil helps the transition into their conversation with Guido da Montefeltro. The conversation held with Montefeltro takes up the remainder of the canto, and it allows Dante to gain a lot of knowledge on Romagna and be updated on his hometown. This knowledge allows Dante to relax and gain information on both Romagna and the life of Boniface VIII. The Sicilian bull is mentioned in the beginning of the canto, and the inclusion of this bull into the canto emphasizes the danger and intensity of this bulge and it provides imagery to the reader so they have a deeper understanding of this level. Boniface VIII is mentioned yet again; however, this time he is referred to as the "Great Priest", and this emphasizes his importance and nobility throughout the poem.
In the beginning of Canto XXVII, Dante Alighieri includes the Sicilian bull as a descriptor of this level of Hell. He has not previously used an animal to provide imagery to the levels of Hell, but for the first time, Dante states "As the Sicilian bull-that brazen spit/which bellowed first (and properly enough/with the lament of him whose file had tuned it-/...the mournful words were changed into its language."(Inferno, XXVII:7-15)