In his youth, Lucius was a good-looking ladies' man. His whole existence was in putting an attractive appearance forward for the sole purpose of impressing and seducing young ladies. He earned quite a reputation, but he never truly "loved" anyone but himself. As age crept up on him and his hair began to gray, the young girls laughed at and made fun of him instead of finding him attractive. He hung out in a cafe, probably where many of the conquests of his youth began. The ancient shade refers to Dante whose love for Beatrice was legendary. Lucius, alas, could never claim such a love.