Dantes Inferno Compare And Contrast Essays

Comparing The Underworlds In Dante’s Inferno And The Odyssey

Dante’s Inferno is a narrative poem, with a very complicated rhyme scheme, originally written in Italian. It documents the author’s, Dante, trip through hell, where he learns how hell is organized and the way in which sinners are punished. Dante is guided by the great poet Virgil, who leads him throughout hell. The Odyssey, is an epic authored by the Greek, Homer. The epics centers on Odysseus’ protracted journey home. The protagonist, Odysseus, visits the underworld for a very short amount of time. The two literary works contain many common elements, such as characters being punished, the protagonists interacting with those in the underworld, repeating characters, and the misery of the underworlds. There are also differences between the two works including the types of interactions between the protagonists and those they encounter, the reasons for each protagonists visit to the underworlds, and how the underworld operates. These differences and similarities can be attributed the Dante’s and Homer’s religion, the time period and culture in which they wrote their respective works, and the purpose for the visits to the underworlds in each work. Although there are many similarities between the underworlds in Dante’s Inferno and The Odyssey, the two works ultimately offer two different visions of the underworld due to the authors’ different religious beliefs and culture, as well as the role of the underworld in each literary work.
The vision of the underworld portrayed in Dante’s Inferno and The Odyssey share many similarities. Both Dante and Odysseus confidently travel to the underworld because a woman, with whom they have had an intimate instructs them to. In The Odyssey, Circe instructs Odysseus to “make [his] own way down to the moldering House of Death” (246). In the Inferno, Dante feels trepidation about his journey and doesn’t feel worthy as he states, “But why should I go there? who allows it?/ I am not Aeneas, nor am I Paul./ Neither I nor any think me fit for this.” (Canto II: 31-33). His nerves are eased when Virgil tells him that he was sent by Beatrice, Dante’s love. “I who bid you go am Beatrice./I come from where I most desire to return. The love that moved me makes me speak.”(Canto II: 70-72). Odysseus has a very sexual relationship with Circe. While Beatrice and Dante do not have sexual relationship, Beatrice is his love. Minos, Zeus’ son and the king of the underworld, judges and decides the fate of all those that enter hell and the House of Death, in both Dante’s Inferno and The Odyssey, respectively. In The Odyssey, Minos is described as, “firmly enthroned, holding his golden scepter, judging all the dead….” (268). Similarily in Dante’s Inferno, Minos is an “accomplished judge of sins/decides what place in Hell is fit for it” (Canto V: 9-10). Both Odysseus and Dante have encounters with relatives while visiting the underworlds, although Dante does not speak with his family member. Odysseus’ mother is...

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Divine Comedy - Indignation and Sin in Dante’s Inferno

1357 words - 5 pages Righteous Indignation and the Sin of Intemperate Anger in the Inferno   Allora stese al legno ambo le mani; per che 'l maestro accorto lo sospininse dicendo: 'Via costà con li altri cani!'   Then he reached out to the boat with both hands; on which the wary Master thrust him off, saying: "Away there with the other dogs!"   Dante's and Virgil's scorn seems at first glance to echo the sin of intemperate...

Comparing the Odyssey and Medea Essay

1527 words - 6 pages While home is usually represented by a physical shelter such as a house, Homer and Euripides in their respective novels The Odyssey and Medea show that home has much more significance as a state where one can comfortably express the values and beliefs that define one’s identity. Both authors use protagonists who are far away from home. These characters often associate with and depend upon other characters they meet. Since they live under the...

Spiritual Growth in the Epic of Gilgamesh, Homer's Odyssey, and Dante's Inferno

2026 words - 8 pages For centuries, authors have been writing stories about man's journey of self-discovery. Spanning almost three-thousand years, the Epic of Gilgamesh, Homer's Odyssey, and Dante's Inferno are three stories where a journey of self-discovery is central to the plot. The main characters, Gilgamesh, Telemachus, and Dante, respectively, find themselves making a journey that ultimately changes them for the better. The journeys may not be...

Divine Comedy - Autobiographical Journey in Dante’s Inferno

626 words - 3 pages Dante’s Inferno - Autobiographical Journey   The Inferno is more than just a fictional story about someone traveling through the universe. It is actually more like an autobiographical journey of life through its author, Dante Alighieri’s eyes. Written in the early 1300s by a disgruntled Dante living in exile, he literally describes a man who has been trapped, and must find a way to escape. Allegorically, he’s telling us about the...

Violent Again Art in Dante’s Inferno

2101 words - 8 pages When Dante uses the term "Violent Again Art" in the Inferno to label a section of the seventh circle, it can actually be interpreted to have two separate meanings as to what the sinners are being punished for. The first meaning of the phrase is taken in the context of the specific meaning of the word "art." This is the way that Dante most obviously meant it to mean. It is referring to artisanship, that is, the working of natural resources and the...

Comparing the Aeneid and the Odyssey

2917 words - 12 pages   Both the Odyssey and the Aeneid represent their cultures very well, but they express different ideas on what one should strive for in life.  There are also different forces that pushed both epics to be written.  The Aeneid expresses the Roman idea of pietas which means to show extreme respect for one’s ancestors. We see this in Aeneas when he is pictured caring his father away from burning Troy.  He has pietas because he cared so much for his...

Divine Comedy - Dante and Virgil's Relationship in Canto XIV of Dante’s Inferno

842 words - 3 pages Dante and Virgil's Relationship in Canto XIV of Dante’s Inferno In Canto XIV of Dante’s Inferno, Virgil describes the statue of the Old Man of Crete. Dante uses the Old Man of Crete as a metaphor for Virgil’s legacy in order to elucidate the nature of Dante’s and Virgil’s relationship. In the beginning of the metaphor, Dante carefully and methodically illustrates the grandeur of the Greek empire and Roman civilization. "[Mount Ida] was...

The Beasts and Monsters in Dante's Inferno

3058 words - 12 pages The Inferno is the first section of Dante's three-part poem, The Divine Comedy. Throughout Dante's epic journey into the depths of Inferno he encounters thirty monsters and five hybrid creatures.  The most significant of these monsters are of central importance to his journey and to the narrative, as they not only challenge Dante's presence in Inferno, but are custodians of Hell, keeping in order or guarding the "perduta gente".  In this essay I...

Allegorical Punishments: Analysis of Dante’s Use of Allegory in Inferno

1280 words - 5 pages In Dante’s Inferno, those who never repented for their sins are sent there after death. Like the old Latin proverb says, “The knowledge of sin is the beginning of salvation.” (“Latin Proverb Quotes” ThinkExist) The punishments in his Hell are decided by the law of retribution, which according to Webster’s Dictionary is the total effect of a person's actions and conduct during the successive phases of the person's existence, regarded as...

The odyssey - comparing the ro

844 words - 3 pages Odyssey vs. Rustling Rhapsody Comparison of the Role of Women "A woman is very unpredictable. She is romantic, sensitive and caring; however, underneath she is convoluted, deceptive and dangerous." -Erin Perrizn (1963 -) One would automatically assume that the female character in a heroic story takes the preconceived role of an object at the disposal of the male...

Comparing and Contrasting the Journeys of Odysseus’ and Telemachus’ in The Odyssey

887 words - 4 pages Odysseus’ and Telemachus’ journeys or nostos were both very similar and different. They parallel each other in some ways but they are also completely different at other times. Telemachus starts as a younger, less mature boy, and without the presence of his father during his childhood, he becomes a timid, shy and spineless boy who is greatly pampered by his mother. He has even more to achieve, being the son of a world-famous father, and this is a...

Comparing Dante's Inferno and the Movie, What Dreams May Come

927 Words4 Pages

Comparing Dante's Inferno and the Movie, What Dreams May Come

The movie's opening scene gives allusions to Dante's own life and his brief courtship with Beatrice. Chris (Robin Williams) begins, "When I was young, I met this beautiful girl on a lake," just as Dante had met Beatrice when he was young. This lake just happens to be on the boarder of Switzerland and Italy, Dante's native country. Anna, Chris' love, finds him sitting on a hillside overlooking that lake, and that scene will become a major focus for the rest of the movie. They believe that they are soul mates, and unlike Dante and Beatrice, Chris and Anna marry and have two children.

Set in modern times, a series of mortal tragedies unlocks a series of immortal…show more content…

While standing outside the walls of a city in this heaven, she covers his eyes, just as Virgil does to Dante when faced with Medusa outside Dis, the capital of hell.

Dressed in black, instead of his usual "saintly" white attire, Albert delivers the bad news. Anna, so filled with guilt, has committed suicide, so now she can never join Chris in Heaven. This starts the journey where Chris goes through hell to find his beloved (Like Dante- kind of). Even though Albert warns him that this has never been done, Albert lets Chris go because he realizes that they are soul-mates, just as Dante thought he and Beatrice were meant to be together. As they prepare to leave heaven, a man who looks like Freud accompanies them. The three of them venture into hell, and they tell Chris to try not to "abandon all hope" (cf., the inscription over Dante's gate to hell) and try not to lose his mind.

They are now on the river Styx, and they enter an artist's rendition of Canto 8. They are pulled off the boat by the dead bodies (cf., the wrathful) trying to attack them in the water. The boat flips over, and they somehow manage to get to shore.

I don't remember if the scene I'm about to describe occurs before or after the Styx scene. The Rebellious Angels guard Dis in Dante, but here it seems to be guarded by the sinners in Round one of Circle seven: the violent against their neighbors. At this point, Chris realizes that the

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