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The Divine Comedy by Dante Alighieri

The Divine Comedy

by Dante Alighieri

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: The Divine Comedy (Omnibus)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingConversations / Mentions
13,997119148 (4.11)1 / 157
  1. 51
    The Doré Illustrations for Dante's Divine Comedy by Gustave Doré (rvdm61)
  2. 20
    The Figure of Beatrice by Charles Williams (jsburbidge)
  3. 21
    Primum mobile: Dantes Jenseitsreise und die moderne Kosmologie by Bruno Binggeli (vreeland)
    vreeland: Bruno Binggeli verbindet Dantes Grosses Werk mit der modernen Astrophysik und macht sich in und mit der Lektüre der Göttlichen Komödie und den darin enthaltenen mittelalterlichen Jenseitsvorstellungen auf die Suche nach dem "Big Bang" - dem Urknall. Paradies und Superraum, Gnadenwahl und Quantenphysik, Hölle und Schwarze Löcher: Mittelalter und Moderne passen sehr viel besser zusammen als man glaubt. Binggeli ist Physiker und Galaxienforscher an der Universität Basel; die wissenschaftliche Akribie, mit der er die Göttliche Komödie mit aktuellen Forschungsergebnissen in Relation bringt, schafft für beide Seiten reizvolle neue Perspektiven und Ansätze des Verstehens.… (more)
  4. 11
    Dante in Love by A. N. Wilson (DLSmithies)
  5. 22
    Ochii Beatricei : cum arăta cu adevărat lumea lui Dante? by Horia-Roman Patapievici (gyges77)

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Dante Alighieri

The Divine Comedy

Wordsworth Classics, Paperback [2009].

8vo. xxii+566. Translated, and with Preface [3-4] and Notes [437-526] by Henry Francis Cary. Introduction by Claire A. Honess [vii-xx]. Additional notes on Inferno by Stefano Albertini [529-66]. Cover: Antaeus setting down Dante and Virgil in the last circle of hell by William Blake (1757-1827).

First printed in Italian as La commedia, 1472.
First published as La Divina Comedia di Dante, 1555.
This translation first published, 1814.
Reprinted with notes by Stefano Albertini, 1998.
Reprinted with a new Introduction, 2009.


Select Bibliography
Note on Pronunciation

The Divine Comedy

Author’s Preface
Chronological View of the Age of Dante

Inferno [Cantos 1-34]
Purgatorio [Cantos 1-33]
Paradiso [Cantos 1-33]

Selection from H. F. Cary’s Notes
Appendix: Additional Notes to Inferno


W. H. Auden, in his essay on Byron’s Don Juan, makes a controversial distinction between “boring” and “a bore”. The adjective, he says, seems to express a “subjective judgement”; something is boring to me. The noun, on the other hand, “claims to be an objective, universally valid statement”. This is, to my mind, one of the not so many instances when Auden wrote complete nonsense. But let’s consider his “four judgments possible”:

1) Not (or seldom) boring but a bore. Examples: The last quartets of Beethoven, the Sistine frescoes of Michelangelo, the novels of Dostoievski.
2) Sometimes boring but not a bore. Verdi, Degas, Shakespeare.
3) Not boring and not a bore. Rossini, the drawings of Thurber, P. G. Wodehouse.
4) Boring and a bore. Works to which one cannot attend. It would be rude to give names.

Now, in my rude opinion, Dante is both boring and a bore. I admit, of course, this is my fault. Ancient classical status like that cannot be wrong. Consider the Bible, the greatest best-seller of all time, obviously the greatest book of all time, simple as that. It may look like a poorly written collection of preposterous short stories (and a few novels), but that is an illusion. So I guess Dante only looks as trivial as in fact he is not. Perhaps if I had come to it in a different way, I might have enjoyed it more.

Music made me read Dante. And the Poet with a capital “P” didn’t live up to the tremendous musical response he elicited from Franz Liszt whose Dante Symphony (1857) remains one of the greatest masterpieces from the nineteenth century most people have never heard of, much less listened to. Liszt punctuated the first movement of his score with some of the best-known lines from Inferno, but neither they nor their context told me much that the music hadn’t with far greater force.

The best I can say about The Divine Comedy is that it is relatively easy to read for something seven centuries old. All 100 cantos are short, 130-150 lines each, and well organised within the story, such as it is. To immediately contradict myself, for the sheer fun of it, the poetry is confused and convoluted, almost wilfully so. I have no idea how much of this is due to the translation. But I suspect a good deal. Henry Francis Cary, our Translator with a capital “T”, writes a ponderous prose, as evident from his preface and notes, and I wouldn’t put it past him to make Dante’s verse more oblique than it is. Claire Honess, in the last as well as the only helpful paragraph of her introduction, claims that Mr Cary made no attempt to preserve Dante’s poetical patterns but tried instead to capture the meaning as fully as possible in blank verse. Well, judge for yourself how well he succeeded by two famous passages from Inferno:

[The inscription on the gates of Hell, 3.1-9:]
‘Through me you pass into the city of woe:
Through me you pass into eternal pain:
Through me among the people lost for ay.
Justice the founder of my fabric moved:
To rear me was the task of power divine,
Supremest wisdom, and primeval love.
Before me things create were none, save things
Eternal, and eternal I endure.
All hope abandon, ye who enter here.’

[Francesca’s story, 5.118-35:]
‘No greater grief than to remember days
Of joy, when misery is at hand. That kens
Thy learned instructor. Yet so eagerly
If thou art bent to know the primal root,
From whence our love gat being, I will do
As one, who weeps and tells his tale. One day,
For our delight we read of Lancelot,
How him love thralled. Alone we were, and no
Suspicion near us. Oft-times by that reading
Our eyes were drawn together, and the hue
Fled from our altered cheek. But at one point
Alone we fell. When of that smile we read,
The wished smile, so rapturously kissed
By one so deep in love, then he, who ne’er
From me shall separate, at once my lips
All trembling kissed. The book and writer both
Were love’s purveyors. In its leaves that day
We read no more.’

A note about the notes in this edition. Those by Mr Cary I found of little help. The translator has a passion for cross-references with everybody from Virgil, Catullus and Ovid to Chaucer, Shakespeare and Milton. I didn’t find these notes enlightening at all. I was even less impressed with Mr Cary’s “Chronological View of the Age of Dante” from which it follows that Dante referred to every possible contemporary event in his poem, from his own ancestry (Paradiso, 15-16) to the election of John XXII as Pope (Paradiso, 27.53). Most of these references I found frankly incomprehensible. Mr Cary’s most valuable contributions, apart from a few notes in which he is content to explain the context, are the prose summaries in the beginning of each canto.

The notes by Signor Albertini (to Inferno only) were more accessible and more useful. Dante’s language is ludicrously allegorical and allusional. It is encouraging for the common mortal that even the mighty scholars often find him obscure. They honestly admit this or that may be either that or this. Or it may be something else. We all know the First Law of Literary Criticism: the more obscure the text, the more profound it is.

Finally, let’s look at this poetic masterpiece, one of the greatest pinnacles of Western (nay, world) literature which is essentially “beyond review”, as awed reviewers keep repeating. Have these people ever read the thing at all, I wonder?

Inferno is certainly the most enjoyable part. Our sensitive and easily fainting Poet is taken to a sightseeing tour of Hell by Virgil. May we all have such wise and knowledgeable guides when we go to Hell! The language is rich and vivid, occasionally even beautiful. One must applaud Dante’s imagination in describing the nine circles of Hell and all their wonders. He and Virgil have plenty of fun with all sorts of shady subjects from Charon and Chiron to Cerberus and the Minotaur, plus plenty of serpents, demons, giants, dead people eager to tell their stories and, of course, “Hell’s Monarch [...] The creature eminent in beauty once” (34.1, 34.18). All the same, leaving aside that the very notion of hell can be produced only by the sick minds of devout Christians, I found the infernal regions neither moving nor thought-provoking.

I was surprised how insignificant, considering its enormous fame and influence, the story of Paolo and Francesca is. One of the most famous couples of doomed lovers occupies just a small part from Canto V in which we visit the second circle where “The carnal sinners are condemned in whom / Reason by lust is swayed.” (5.39-40). Yet they have inspired great many spin-offs, including some masterpieces like Tchaikovsky’s symphonic poem Francesca da Rimini which, by the way, is closely modelled on the first movement of the Dante Symphony.[2] References to Paolo and Francesca tend to pop up at the most unlikely places:

Some time ago I was reading the page which one of the best of our weeklies devotes to the criticism of current literature. The reviewer started his consideration with the words: ‘Mr. So and So is a not a mere story-teller’. The word mere stuck in my throat, and on that day, like Paolo and Francesca on another occasion, I read no further.[3]

I wish I could honestly say that Dante provides a penetrating discussion of lust, wrath, sloth, avarice and other notorious, if seldom deadly, sins. (Including lack of baptism. However virtuous life you may have led, were you not baptised, you go to the First Circle of Hell. I am not making this up.) But Dante does nothing of the sort. He merely says these things are bad. How come, Signor Alighieri? Why, it is very simple! If you practise these sins in this world, in the next one you will suffer fairly gruesome and relatively everlasting punishments. This is the essence of Inferno, nothing less, certainly nothing more. The rest is rhetorical verbiage, nothing more, certainly nothing less. The numerous colourful descriptions of “the souls / To misery doomed” (3.16-7) are as tedious and worthless as the endless battles in The Iliad (another dead “classic” rotting in lip service).

A great deal of Inferno actually has nothing to do hell or sin. It deals exclusively with Italian politics. Dante evidently had plenty of scores to settle. The notes are very helpful about these matters, but so what? What do I care about petty quarrels, seven days or seven centuries old? Unlike Machiavelli, his fellow Florentine two centuries later, Dante didn’t write a philosophical treatise on politics still relevant centuries later. He wrote a satirical Commedia (“divine” came posthumously) about topical events, issues and people, occasionally spiced up with some Greek mythology. There is much description but little reflection in it. The Poet spares nobody, not even his own family and his compatriots, much less popes and other foreigners (i.e. natives of other Italian city-states). But his poetry is tremendously superficial. No attempt is made to deal with the depth and complexity of human nature. No attempt at all! But if you are passionately interested in medieval Italian history, you will find Dante compelling.

It has been said that Inferno is enough to turn even the staunchest atheist into a pious believer. It didn’t turn me. I am more likely to be converted by “Inferno” from the Dante Symphony or “Dies Irae” from Verdi’s Requiem. Today we still know little and have a great deal to learn, but at least we can dismiss Hell and going there because of a defect baptising record or extra-marital sex as the nonsense which it is. We don’t faint at Francesca’s plight as our compassionate narrator: we know perfectly well she shouldn’t be where she is for what she’s done. And, frankly, who cares about the deeds and misdeeds of Nicholas III, Boniface VIII, Guido da Montefeltro, Count Ugolino and countless others Guelphs and Ghibellines, popes and pundits? Not I.

Purgatorio is not exactly an improvement. Theoretically, the place where souls are purged and prepared for paradise offers an even greater dramatic potential than Hell. Not so here.

Dante and Virgil take a jolly stroll around the mountain of Purgatory, slowly ascending its endless slopes and meeting all sorts of people on the way. Except that the sinners are mostly our Poet’s former friends and treated rather more kindly by the purgatorial powers, there is not much difference with Hell. Again, there is a lot of Italian politics that must have been hot and burning at the time, but seven centuries later has become incomprehensible. The Great Message is nothing more than yet another bit of religious tripe. Whatever sins you may commit in this life, you can still qualify for the celestial purge if you repent (including posthumously) before God. If you can seriously buy this stuff, you have my hearty congratulations. If you feel philosophical, you may enjoy a discourse of love and free will for intelligent five-year-olds (Cantos 16-18).

Again, Liszt is a vast improvement over Dante. If the outer sections of “Inferno” make Dante’s verse pale in comparison and Francesca’s sentiment lends itself better to an English horn solo than to words, the Purgatory is perfectly conveyed by the anguished passage marked “Piú lento – Un poco meno mosso” and the tremendous B minor fugue (“Lamentoso”) which form most of the second movement, “Purgatorio”. If there is a perfect expression of our imperfect struggles for perfection, this is it.

Paradiso is the apotheosis of celestial dullness. Here Beatrice, the perfect incarnation of the Eternal Feminine (who first appears in Canto 30 of Purgatorio), is our Poet’s constant guide and companion. (Virgil, poor chap, is nowhere to be seen.) Dante and Beatrice take a trip through the Solar System and meet plenty of saints, friends and relatives, everybody from Solomon and Justinian to Thomas Aquinas and Saint Peter, one more loquacious than the other.

This is the least descriptive and most philosophical part. Here, for once, Dante does try to grapple with serious issues, I give him that. Unfortunately, his style remains just as verbosely rhetorical and devoid of substance as before. Most of his reflections are spuriously meaningful, the same old tale about the Fall of Man, his redemption through the love of God, and all that celestial jazz. This version is pleasantly anti-clerical and pro-Biblical, but not making more sense on that account. A great deal is obscure enough to pass for something profound in the minds of starry-eyed devotees, I guess. Fools can always be found to discover hidden sense in obscurity and vagueness, as a writer far greater than Dante wisely observed.[4] Sometimes contradictions are hurled in with nonchalance which is positively perverse. For instance, Emperor Justinian tells us that (6.124-7) “Hence doth heavenly justice / Temper so evenly affection in us, / It ne’er can warp to any wrongfulness.” This seems to rule out the free will we’ve been granted in Purgatorio, not to mention fashionable notions such as sin, but never mind minor details like that.

Liszt, unfortunately, never composed a “Paradiso”. He let Wagner convince him no composer could depict Paradise in music. Perhaps he was not hard to convince, considering that Heaven is a lot duller than Hell. But he did provide an ethereal setting of the Magnificat as a rather magnificent conclusion to his Symphony. Certainly, it is a glimpse into our heavenly strivings well beyond Dante’s modest powers.

Bela Bartok once famously said (I wish I could remember where) that a composer must be judged, not by his thematic material, but by what use he makes of it. I maintain the opposite is true of writers. The Divine Comedy is ingeniously organised and written with certain word power. But once you look beyond the structure and the style, it is empty. It shows merely the author’s vast knowledge of Greek mythology, Roman literature, Italian politics and the Bible. It tells nothing important about the human animal, this jumble of vice and virtue, “half dust, half deity” (Byron’s phrase[5], not Dante’s). Mr Cary did a great disservice to Dante by stressing his (lack of) meaning at the expense of his (gorgeous?) poetry.

In short, this is yet another classic that has grown old. Whatever meaning it might have had in the Age of Faith, it is dead. Whatever inspiration it might have been to Byron, Liszt and Maugham, it is gone. The whole human race deserves a special circle in Hell for still keeping this florid drivel in print after seven centuries.

[1] The Dyer’s Hand, Random House, 1962, p. 387.
[2] Humphrey Searle, The Music of Liszt, Dover, 1966, Chapter III, pp. 80-81.
[3] W. Somerset Maugham, The Writer’s Point of View, Cambridge University Press, 1951, p. 12. Incidentally, Maugham claimed his novel The Painted Veil (1925) was inspired by a few lines from Purgatorio (5.131-3). See the 1934 preface for the inclusion of the novel in The Collected Edition. It is reprinted in the Vintage Classics edition, 2001, pp. vii-x.
[4] W. Somerset Maugham, The Summing Up (1938), Chapter XI.
[5] Manfred, I.2.40. Incidentally, Byron was a big fan of Dante. One of his lesser known poems, written in June 1816 “to gratify” Countess Guiccioli and running to 670 lines organised in four cantos, is The Prophecy of Dante in which the Poet reflects in his favourite terza rima on exile, Beatrice and various other subjects. Around the same time Byron even made a translation of the Francesca episode in rhymed verse, but this was published only posthumously in 1830 (The Prophecy of Dante appeared in print on 21 April 1821). ( )
5 vote Waldstein | May 21, 2018 |
Took me nearly a year to get through this monster. Make sure Google is close at hand when attempting to read this book. Well worth it though. ( )
  knp4597 | Mar 19, 2018 |
"Belonging in the immortal company of the great works of literature, Dante
Alighieri's poetic masterpiece, The Divine Comedy, is a moving human drama, and
unforgettable visionary journey through the infinite torment of Hell, up the
arduous slopes of Purgatory, and on to the glorious realm of Paradise - the
sphere of universal harmony and eternal salvation." --back cover
  collectionmcc | Mar 6, 2018 |
Everything it is to be a human being is brought to form and consequence within a single structure that makes The Divine Comedy the most massive metaphor of western culture." —From the Introduction

"Midway in our life's journey, I went astray
from the straight road and woke to find myself
alone in a dark wood . . ."

—Inferno, Canto I, 1-3
I first heard those words from Don Draper in the trailer for the opening episode of Mad Men*'s sixth Season, when it first aired in 2013 . . .

Fast forward 4 years.

I'd been putting off reading The Divine Comedy because I knew that I would have to spend a couple of hours deciding on a translation †. When I finally decided to, I had that rendering of the first Canto in mind that I had heard on Mad Men, but I didn't know if it actually existed, or if someone on the show had taken an artistic liberty and changed an existing translation.

I began comparing: I found Longfellow hard to follow; Mendelbaum flat. Finally, I came across Ciardi's translation. I loved it. Not just the opening of the first Canto, but the whole of the first Canto, and some other parts that I compared. For me, it strikes a perfect balance between readability and poetic melody.

The edition that I read includes an Introduction, 13 diagrams, a short summary of the Canto at the start of each one, and 1-5 pages of Ciardi's extremely helpful, insightful, and at times, humorous notes‡, at the end of each Canto.

I had read that Dante's magnum opus was very dense, and included lots of references, and use of literary techniques such as symbolism, allegory &c., but I didn't think to check if various editions included notes when I was ordering a copy.

I was lucky.

In my opinion, even if you know your scripture, church doctrine &c. inside out, know the topography of Italy better than your home country, and have a good knowledge of ancient history, you will still want a copy with notes for your first reading.

The density is astounding, definitely the densest poem that I have read, and could definitely contend with, for example, Ulysses & The Sound and The Fury on this front.

But Ciardi guides you through with a gentle hand, unravelling this masterwork with precision, diligence, and detail.

When I was reading, I read the helpful summary (which includes some details like scene, and characters) first, then the actual Canto, then browsed the notes at my leisure. I didn't have a meticulous interest in the biblical references, so I only read enough of those notes to get a general understanding of the Canto in terms of the biblical references, and I also got a bit burned-out with the topological & historical Italian references that Dante was making, so again I didn't read all of these. But I read fully most of the other notes. These include textual information, notes on the translation (such as liberties he took), and literary explanations.

The notes were detailed, and helped me to appreciate the complete genius of Dante infinitely more than if I had not consulted any notes. And again, this is something that I would absolutely recommend a first-time reader should do if they don't want to get lost and confused, and risk lack of understanding and boredom on Dante's divine journey.

Like most people. I enjoyed the Inferno the most. Purgatory and Paradise I did enjoy, but to a lesser extent. But this mainly comes down to the subject matter. I do have a small interest in, but am not familiar with, church doctrine, scripture &c. at all. But you don't need this knowledge to appreciate Dante's literary genius on all fronts.

"Dante must be read attentively: mind will reveal itself only to mind. But Dante is not difficult to read. It is true that he writes in depth and on many simultaneous levels. Yet his language is usually simple and straightforward. If the gold of Dante runs deep, it must also rise to the surface. A lifetime of reading cannot mine all that gold; yet enough lies on the surface, or only an inch below, to make a first reading a bonanza in itself. All one needs are some suggestions as to what to look for. Thereafter, one need only follow the vein as it goes deeper and deeper. One must, to begin with, think allegorically."

A few quotes:

There are always those
who measure worth by popular acclaim,
ignoring principles of art and reason

—Purgatory, XXVI 120-122

. . .within a cloud of flowers
that rose like fountains from the angel's hands
and fell about in showers

—Purgatory, XXX, 28

. . . and it lost Paradise by the same deed.
Nor could they be regained . . .

—Paradise, VII, 87

And now, that every wish be granted you
I turn back to explain a certain passage,
that you may understand it as I do.

—Paradise, VII, 121

Here I concede defeat. No poet known,
comic or tragic, challenged by his theme
to show his power, was ever more outdone

—Paradise, XXX, 22

That he may experience all while yet alive
—Inferno XXVIII, 48

The instant I had come upon the sill
of my second age and crossed and
changed my life

—Purgatory XXX 124-125

. . . with fruits of paradise.
—Paradise XI, 123

So many streams of happiness flow down
into my mind that it grows self-delighting

—Paradise XVI, 19-20

I have learned much that would, were it
offend the taste of many alive today.

—Paradise XVII, 116-117

. . . sees far beyond
the furthest limits

—Paradise XIX, 56-57

. . . for though he learns
the sweet life, he has known the bitter

—Paradise XX, 47-48

The name of that Sweet Flower to which I pray
morning and night, seized all my soul and moved it

—Paradise XXIII, 88-89

Into the gold of that rose that blooms eternal
—Paradise XXX, 124

. . . the two eternal roots of this our rose
—Paradise XXXII, 120

. . . to this flower of timeless beauty.
—Paradise XXXII, 126

* One of the best shows (part of my 'holy trinity') which, like Dante, is very dense, and uses lots of literary techniques which most viewers do not even realise, mistaking the show for a soap-opera with lots of adultery and nothing particularly deep to say. I have watched it multiple times, and have read multiple articles on each episode which delve fully into the literary techniques that Mad Men uses, and even after multiple viewings and reading multiple articles, I still have original views and insights on most episodes. Here is a website which links various reviews for each episode by season if I have piqued your interest. If you want to avoid information overload, Todd VanDerWerff, Alan Sepinwall, and Andrew Johnston are the most incisive and perceptive critics.

† Personally, when it comes to poetry, I think that the poetic form of the author should be preserved as much as possible, and so I did not consider any literal translations.

This short article discusses and compares four different translations by Zapulla, Mendelbaum, Hollander, and Ciardi.

‡ Here are some excerpts from Ciardi's notes to Paradise:

"Few readers will have remembered the point Dante left open in those lines, but Dante seems never to forget. To read him is to experience mind in extraordinary order."
-Note to XX

". . . though had he done so he would have found himself prophesying the end of the world within fairly tight limits, a prophecy Dante wisely chose not to utter. Poetry is, among other things, the art of knowing what to leave out."
-Note to XX

"The art of juxtaposing details in a way that constantly gives scale to an all-containing system of values is one of the marvels of Dante's genius."
-Note to XXIII

"The Muses gave suck to the poets, thereby transmitting to them the powers of song. How these virgin sisters maintained their milk supply is one more item to be filed among the sacred mysteries."
-Note to XXIII

"Adam declares that his whole sojourn in the Terrestrial Paradise was six hours (and perhaps part of the seventh). . . . Half an allegorical day is about as long as any man can stay innocent."
-Note to XXVI

But even Ciardi, one or twice, has to bow before the Genius of Dante:

". . . Such questions must be referred to a quality of revelation unknown to footnotes." ( )
  EroticsOfThought | Feb 27, 2018 |
In finally sitting down and reading the entire Divine Comedy, I can now see why The Inferno is usually separated from Purgatorio & Paradiso. The Inferno is captivating and paints vivid pictures of what Dante &. Virgil are seeing and experiencing. However Purgatorio & Paradiso seemed to lack this each in their own way. Purgatorio was still able to paint the pictures but not quite as vividly. Perhaps the subject matter was not as captivating as well. Dante certainly had the gift of making Purgatory feel not too bad but also not too good. In Paradiso we switch guides from Virgil to Beatrice. It is then that Dante seems to loose his focus on his surroundings and turns toward fauning over Beatrice's beauty. I figured that the Canto with God in it would have been a bit more powerful & profound. Lucifer's appearance was more awe inspiring than God's. Don't get me wrong, I give credit to the absolute classic that this work is, however I think there are some issues with it from a reader's standpoint. When all of the action is over in the 1st portion of the book it becomes a chore to finish reading it. All-in-all this entire work was beautifully written in the terza rima rhyme scheme which adds a bit of romance to every line read. I have to mention that I think it's funny how people get the details of this work confused with The Holy Bible. There in itself stands testement to how amazing this work has been throughout history. Despite my personal issues with reading it I am honored to have read such famous and renouned piece of historical literature. ( )
2 vote Syndelle777 | Nov 12, 2017 |
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Witte, KarlTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Zimmermann, Wolf D.Cover designersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Abandon all hope, ye who enter here.
. . .quel giorno più non vi leggemmo avante.
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Belonging in the immortal company of the great works of literature, Dante Alighieri's poetic masterpiece, The Divine Comedy, is a moving human drama, an unforgettable visionary journey through the infinite torment of Hell, up the arduous slopes of Purgatory, and on to the glorious realm of Paradise; the sphere of universal harmony and eternal salvation.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0451208633, Paperback)

Dante Alighieri's poetic masterpiece, The Divine Comedy, is a moving human drama, an unforgettable visionary journey through the infinite torment of Hell, up the arduous slopes of Purgatory, and on to the glorious realm of Paradise—the sphere of universal harmony and eternal salvation.

10 illustrations

@HolyHaha I have to climb a mountain now? You got to be kidding me. Is this a joke? Who the hell came up with story? VIIIRRRGGGILLLLLLLLLLL!

From Twitterature: The World's Greatest Books in Twenty Tweets or Less

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:20:28 -0400)

(see all 10 descriptions)

"'The Divine Comedy' begins in a shadowed forest on Good Friday in the year 1300. It proceeds on a journey that, in its intense recreation of the depths and the heights of human experience, has become the key with which Western civilization has sought to unlock the mystery of its own identity. Allen Mandelbaum's astonishingly Dantean translation, which captures so much of the life of the original, renders whole for us the masterpiece that genius whom our greatest poets have recognized as a central model for all poets. This Everyman's edition -- containing in one volume all three cantos, 'Inferno,' 'Purgatorio,' and 'Paradiso' -- includes an introduction by Nobel Prize-winning poet Eugenio Montale, a chronology, notes, and a bibliography. Also included are forty-two drawings selected from Botticelli's marvelous late-fifteenth century series of illustrations." ***"An epic poem in which the poet describes his spiritual journey through Hell, Purgatory and Paradise -- guided first by the poet Virgil and then by his beloved Beatrice -- which results in a purification of his religious faith."… (more)

» see all 29 descriptions

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W.W. Norton

An edition of this book was published by W.W. Norton.

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Ediciones Encuentro

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