| Quote #4
[Francesca]: "Love, that can quickly seize the gentle heart,
Francesca, in speaking the language of courtly love, not only personifies love but also exonerates herself and her lover of all guilt. She represents herself as a passive body upon which Love acts, like a god. Here, Love "[takes] hold" of both lovers and "[leads] the two of us unto one death." Francesca repeatedly renders Love as the guilty, sinning force and represents herself as innocent.
| Quote #5
[Francesca]: "One day, to pass the time away, we read
In attempting to describe their love, Francesca reveals that her and Paolo’s feelings are nothing more than carnal lust. Their shared activity of reading, which should be a purely intellectual pursuit, becomes an increasingly physical one. First the words lead their gazes to one another, then they imitate the characters’ actions, and finally – in the most blatantly physical representation – Francesca describes the book as a flesh-and-blood person, Gallehault, the man who urged Lancelot to carry on an illicit affair with the queen. All of this results in Francesca and Paolo forgetting their reading in favor of giving in to their lust.
| Quote #6
[Virgil]: "Now fraud, that eats away at every conscience,
Because God with his infinite love created the universe, his love permeates everything, creating bonds of love between men and the world around them. Fraud, the most heinous type of sin, "cut[s] off / the bond of love that nature forges" because it falsifies man’s (supposedly loving) relationship to the material world around him. Whereas sinners of ordinary fraud like hypocrites, flatterers, and sorcerers generally betray the world around them, sinners of treacherous fraud first establish a particular bond of love with another person and then betray them, making the "special trust" between them "forgotten." Thus, fraud in a very real way is a negation of natural love.