Dante Alighieri’s life was marked by his love for Florence - perhaps even more so than his love for Beatrice. Even when he was constrainted to life in foreign lands and courts, he never forgot the lessons on the Republic which he learnt in his native city. Throughout his writing he reflected the richness he had inherited from the golden surroundings of the Baptistery he was baptised in, and he never forgot the beauty of Florence's golden age - first in Roman times and later in the middle ages.

His most important masterpiece, The Divine Comedy, continues to inspire authors and artists from every part of the world, such as Dan Brown or even mangaka authors like Go Nagai - is considered a work of art which has yet to meet its match. The poetry which pervades it and the rigorous logic which underpins it still manages, seven hundred years on, to make any man or woman dream.