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William Duba


Based on the comments of Giovanni Boccaccio and Giovanni Villani, a theory holds that Dante Alighieri may have studied philosophy and theology at Paris in 1309-1310. That same academic year, the Dominican bachelor of the Sentences at Paris, Giovanni Regina di Napoli (John of Naples), delivered a speech thanking a ‘Benefactor’. This Benefactor, neither a Dominican nor a theologian, gave the sole benefit of honoring Giovanni, the convent of Saint-Jacques, and the Dominican Order with his presence, attending Giovanni’s lectures on theology. This paper explores the likelihood that the Benefactor was Dante. An edition and an English translation of Giovanni’s speech are included in appendices.


Eloisa Morra