Much of what we know of Dante's life is gleaned from his writings, where as often as not, however, his account of what actually happened forms part of an ideal self-interpretation. Born into the minor nobility of Florence (his family, of Guelph allegiance, appears over the years to have suffered a degree of socio-economic decline) in May, 1265, he had a secondary education based on classical and medieval texts, and, as a young man, moved in the company of some of the most cultured and influential figures in contemporary Florence, including the pedagogue and rhetorician Brunetto Latini and the poet Guido Cavalcanti, the latter especially having an important place in …
Took, John. "Dante Alighieri". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 15 May 2006; last revised 30 November -1.
[http://www.litencyc.com/php/speople.php?rec=true&UID=1131, accessed 26 April 2015.]