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Giovanni Malatesta, named Giangiotto, was the eldest son of Sigismondo I, lord of Gradara. He was described as ugly and lame.
In 1275 he married Francesca da Polenta, the daughter of Guido, the Lord of Ravenna of guelphs' side. Giangiotto was Podestà in the town of Pesaro and as he could not bring his family with him (because of a law of the time), he left his wife Francesca and his daughter Concordia in the castle of Gradara.
Then, Paolo, his brother became a frequent caller at the castle:
The story of the two lovers is made well-known by Dante in the V chant of the Inferno. These are the words of Francesca.....
Amor, ch'a nullo amato amar perdona,
Mi prese del costui piacer sì forte
Che, come vedi, ancor non m'abbandona
But Giangiotto happened to know it, maybe from his brother Malatestino: Then he pretended to leave but soon came back to the castle where he caught his wife and his brother alone in Francesca's bedroom ...
|Noi leggiavamo un giorno per
Di Lancialotto, come amor lo strinse:
Soli eravamo e senza alcun sospetto.
Per più fiate li occhi ci sospinse
Quando leggemmo il disiato riso
La bocca mi baciò tutto tremante.
Giangiotto rushed upon his brother to kill him but Francesca sheltered him with her body and was killed at his place. Paolo followed her soon afterwards.
Thus Giangiotto's vegeance was accomplished.
It was the year 1289.HTTP/1.1 200 OK Server: Microsoft-IIS/5.0 Date: Fri, 24 May 2013 09:17:49 GMT IISExport: This web site was exported using IIS Export v3.0 X-Powered-By: ASP.NET Content-Type: text/html