Although some people may think that translations of original texts will ruin the meaning and the style that the original author wanted to present, it is not true for Robert Pinsky’s translation of The Inferno of Dante. Pinsky’s translation is not only essential, but it also presents the same picture that Dante wanted to. Even more impressive is that Pinsky also takes in the style that Dante writes in while translating the text. Pinsky keeps in mind the specific interlocking rhyme scheme that is in the original text. This vital translation not only forms an image of the specific event, it also brings the poem to life. An example of a specific text that provides powerful imagery is the description of the entrance to hell: As leaves in quick succession sail down in autumn
Until the bough beholds its entire store
Fallen to the earth, so Adam’s evil seed
Swoop from the bank when each is called, as sure
As a trained falcon, to cross to the other side
Of the dark water; and before one throng can land
On the far shore, on this side new souls crowd.
(Dante, Canto 3 lines 93-99)
In canto 3, Dante and Virgil arrive at the Gate of Hell. While walking in, they hear cries of torture and see the dead souls suffering in a terrifying environment. These souls are constantly being bit by flies and wasps, and worms are sucking in their blood and tears. Dante is shocked when he sees this. They continue walking and arrive near the river of Acheron where they see a group of dead souls waiting to be taken across the river. In this scene, Dante arrived at the river of Acheron with Virgil. When they see the group of dead souls, a boat approaches them. On the boat is an old man named Charon. Charon recognizes Dante and persuades Dante to stay away from the dead, and especially, hell. However, Virgil replies saying that this journey has been ordered from above, the gods. Charon does not question anymore; he then transports them across the river. While they...