6 Historic Acts of Revenge That Put ‘Kill Bill’ to Shame
“Shit got real in 1301, when the Pope appointed a Charles de Valois as peacemaker for Tuscany. A local politician named Dante Alighieri figured old Bonerface was up to something ugly (as per usual), so he decided to travel to Rome to talk it out. In a dick move worthy of the Guinness Book of Records, the Pope invited Dante to stay a while as his personal guest while he secretly ordered de Valois to march into Florence with an armed militia to overthrow and execute the government and install a more Pope-friendly regime.
To top it off, Boniface then slapped a huge fine on Dante, as punishment for being in Rome. The new council of Florence passed a declaration that Dante could never return to the city by punishment of death. This order wasn’t repealed until 2008, about seven hundred years after this punishment would have ceased to be effective.
The Pope probably should have just killed him instead of being such a smartass, because Dante went on to personally vilify him in what became one of the most widely read and influential works of literature in the Western world, the Divine Comedy.
Even without the aid of a printing press, Dante’s brilliant rhyming style and use of the common Italian language assured that everyone would hear his side of the story. He put everyone who ever messed with him in his whole life in an ironic literary interpretation of Hell, reserving a special spot for Pope Boniface VIII.
In the epic poem, St. Peter himself denounces his papacy as “a blood-filled sewer,” and his papal throne on Earth “vacant.” The burn was so delicious that some families had to build entire churches to offset the damage Dante had done to their names and businesses. These days, the equivalent would be if Eminem released a 40-track album in which he personally named you and called you a fuckhead in every single song, and it went triple Platinum.”