"Let us descend now unto greater woe; Already sinks each star that was ascending When I set out, and loitering is forbidden"

(Canto 7, line 97-99)

"To greater woe", that is, down to the fifth circle, where the angry souls are punished. Sapegno concludes from Virgil's statement of the time that more than twelve hours has passed since he set off to rescue Dante. Counting from the time at the beginning of Canto 2 (sunset) and the end of Canto 11 (about two hours before sunrise), he estimates that it is now about midnight on the night between March 25 and 26. Reggio concurs, with the reservation that time in the poem is altogether fictional and only serves to give a realistic feel to Dante's travels; thus it would be unnecessary to demand too much exactness.