…his tongue, which had before been whole and fit
for speech, now cleaves; the other’s tongue, which had
been forked, now closes up; and the smoke stops.
The soul that had become an animal,
now hissing, hurried off along the valley;
the other one, behind him, speaks and spits…
…"I’d have Buoso run
on all fours down this road, as I have done." (Inf. XXV, 133-141)
When Juno was incensed with Semele
and thus, against the Theban family
had shown her fury time and time again,
then Athamas was driven so insane
that, seeing both his wife and their two sons,
as she bore one upon each arm, he cried:
"Let’s spread the nets, to take the lioness
together with her cubs along the pass";
and he stretched out his talons, pitiless,
and snatched the son who bore the name Learchus,
whirled him around and dashed him on a rock;
she, with her other burden, drowned herself.
And after fortune, turned against the pride
of Troy, which had dared all, so that the king
together with his kingdom, was destroyed,
then Hecuba was wretched, sad, a captive;
and after she had seen Polyxena
dead and, in misery, had recognized
her Polydorus lying on the shore,
she barked, out of her senses, like a dog –
her agony had so deformed her mind.
But neither fury – Theban, Trojan – ever
was seen to be so cruel against another,
in rending beasts and even human limbs,
as were two shades I saw, both pale and naked,
who, biting, ran berserk in just the way
a hog does when it’s let loose from its sty.
The one came at Capocchio and sank
his tusks into his neck so that, by dragging,
he made the hard ground scrape against his belly.
And he who stayed behind, the Arentine,
trembled and said: "That phantom’s Gianni Schicchi
and he goes raging, rending others so." (Inf. XXX, 1-33)
No clamp has ever fastened plank to plank
so tightly; and because of this, they butted
each other like two rams, such was their fury.
And one from whom the cold had taken both
his ears, who kept his face bent low, then said:
"Why do you keep on staring so at us?
If you would like to know who these two are:
that valley where Bisenzio descends,
belonged to them and to their father Alberto.
They came out of one body; and you can
search all Caina, you will never find
a shade more fit to sit within this ice – (Inf. XXXII, 49-60)