Saturday, October 22, 2011

Dante's Inferno Study Guide

Let's try make a Dante's Inferno study guide..

Circle, Sin, Punishment, Monster, Representative Sinners, Notes.

At 35 years-old on Holy Friday, Dante awakes in dark wood and faces the three beasts: lion, leopard, and she-wolf. He cannot make it to the top of the hill and then meets Virgil. He tells him to make a journey through Hell with him.

Sin: Neutrals - couldn't choose a side, denied from both Heaven and Hell
Punishment: They must continually chase a banner and are also being stung by insects
Representative Sinners: Pope Celestine V, neutral angels
Notes: They encounter the Gates of Hell. Vestibule is also called the Ante-Inferno

1st Circle (Limbo):
Sin: Being a pagan or not being baptized (includes everyone born before Jesus)
Punishment: Not really a punishment. They can have friends and live in a nice castle.
Representative Sinners: Virgil, Homer, Ovid, Horace, Lucan, Euclid, Cicero, Socrates, Plato, Julius Caesar, Camilla, King Latinus, etc.
Notes: Also called Limbo. It is somewhat unfair to go to Hell, but they have an Elysian Fields sort of Hell. Virgil lives here, but he can travel with Dante along the different circles via the decree from many female figures (Virgin Mary, Beatrice.)


mere said...

No joke.... I was just considering doing this....

mere said...

Circle 2

Sin: Lust

Punishment: sinners are blown around endlessly by the unforgiving winds of unquenchable desire

Monster: Minos (with his coiling tail of judgement)

Sinners: Cleopatra & Helen of Troy

Also: Don't forget Francesca & Paolo! Francesca had a affair with Paolo while married to Guido as a political peace agreement between their parents, Guido da Polenta and Guido Cavalcanti.

mere said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Ravin S said...

Oops Meredith already posted this, but I also included circle 3.

Between the 1st and 2nd Circle lies King Minos who is the judge for Hell. He has a long tail that curls up depending on the circle of Hell that one must go to.

2nd Circle:
Sin: Lust, adultery
Punishment: They are blown about in a whirlwind forever and have no control anymore
Monster: King Minos (see above)
Representative Sinners: Dido (Cleopatra), Helen of Troy, Paris, Tristan, Francesca & Paulo
Notes: Dante speaks to Francesca and Paulo about their adulterous relationship and how Francesca's husband killed them both. They fell in love while reading Lancelot's romance.

3rd Circle:
Sin: Gluttony
Punishment: It is dark and rain falls endlessly. It is disgusting and also smells.
Monster: Cerberus is the three headed dog that is always hungry and eats the sinners. Dante throws slime in his mouth to escape him.
Representative Sinners: Ciacco is a Florentine man who was a glutton. He foresees Dante's exile (since Dante was already exiled by this writing).
Notes: Virgil explains that on the Last Judgment Day, the bodies will be reunited with the souls and the pain will become greatly worse.

christine said...

J.K. Rowling's "Fluffy" was definitely inspired by Cerberus...dont you guys think?

alyb said...

I think it is also important to note that women were in circle 2 (lust) but they arent really seen in other circles. This plays into gender roles, and it shows that Dante may have been sexist. By putting women in only lust that is saying that women are only capable of sins like lust.