High-Priest Caiaphas transfixed and trampled under foot by every hypocrite

If we let him alone so, all will believe in him; and the Romans will come, and take away our place and nation. But one of them, named Caiphas, being the high priest that year, said to them: You know nothing. Neither do you consider that it is expedient for you that one man should die for the people, and that the whole nation perish not.
'That man you see nailed down
advised the Pharisees it was the better course
that one man should be martyred for the people.
'He is stretched out naked, as you see,
across the path. It is his lot to feel
the weight of each who passes.
'Just so his father-in-law is racked with us
down here and with the others of the council
that was a seed of evil for the Jews.'
I saw that Virgil marveled at the sight
of this shape stretched as on a cross,
so ignoble in his eternal exile.
Canto XXIII Inferno


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