"and rise again the other By force of him who now is on the coast"

(Canto 6, lines 68-69)

Referring to the Whites' loss of power in January 1302. "Him who now is on the coast" is believed by most commentators to refer to Dante's nemesis Pope Boniface VIII, though some believe it might be the French count Charles of Valois. This is disputed by both Sapegno and Reggio, who say that Charles was occupied with a war in Flanders at the time and therefore had no part in that particular conflict. Early historical writings tell that Boniface VIII endeavoured at the time to show the same generous attitude to both the Blacks and Whites, while his implicit support was for the Blacks. To achieve control over Florence, on All Soul's Day 1301, November 1, Boniface sent Charles of Valois there under pretense of mediating the conflict there, while his true intent was helping the Blacks to power. After the Blacks gained power, they started persecuting the Whites, which resulted in three years' banishment and a fine of five thousand florentines for Dante during this period. Because he never presented himself to court, his sentence was changed in June the same year to lifelong banishment and confiscation of all personal property.