Dante's Inferno

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Cultural and Personal Aspects of the “Inferno”
Every great poem has a setting that signifies the story or a setting that has a cultural significance to the concept of the story. In the “Inferno”, setting and culture are important roles especially because it was written in the early 14th century. Florence, Italy was founded in 59 b.c. by the Romans. Dante was known as a literary figure, he was born roughly around 1265 and passed in 1321. There are many cultural aspects of Italy that are in the Inferno, such as Michelangelo’s art, the use of the vernacular, Dante’s works and others. Significant and well-known people such as: Virgil; considered the greatest of Latin poets, Aristotle; a great philosopher, Farinata; a Ghibelline political leader, Count Ugolino; an Italian nobleman, and others were in The Divine Comedy. In the “Inferno”, there were many political arguments. Dante, writing the Inferno shortly after being exiled, makes his allegations in various ways. He condemns political figures with whom he disagreed by dispersing them ruthlessly throughout different circles of hell. Dante asserts throughout the poem his political belief that church and state should be separate but equal powers; Lucifer chews on Judas (betrayer of Christ, the ultimate spiritual leader), Cassius and Brutus (betrayers of Caesar, the ultimate political leader). Hell’s final circle consists of treachery against religion and government. One cultural value revealed in the Inferno is faith. The Inferno shows humanity occupying a special place and how we are all directly linked to God who is within reach of all of us. Dante’s experiences with political, religious and cultural matters were a driving force for his development of The Divine Comedy. Do you believe in love at first sight? Dante did, and he never fell out of love for Beatrice. When he first laid eyes on her at nine years old, his mind was set to be with her forever. However, the time range he fell in love didn’t consider his...
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