Dante Alighieri's narcolepsy

Francesco Maria Galassi, Michael E. Habicht, Frank J. Rühli

Research output: Contribution to journalComment/debate

2 Citations (Scopus)


Dante Alighieri's (1265–1321) Canto 1 of Inferno describes the memorable episode in which he tries to climb a mountain towards his final redemption but encounters three wild beasts, one of which is a she-wolf, which scares him back down the mountain. As Dante steps back, he stumbles upon his mentor Virgil, to whom he says: “Behold the beast on whose account I turned:/ from her protect me, O thou famous Sage,/ for she makes both my veins and pulses tremble”. The poetic hendiadys in the final verse should be read as “my pulsating veins” or, in other words, “my arteries”.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)245
Number of pages1
JournalThe Lancet Neurology
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2016


  • Dante Alighieri
  • Narcolepsy
  • Medicine


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