Summary of Dante in Hell For Your Essay
In his Dante’s Inferno, Dante Alighieri relates the story of his three years’ journey with Beatrice. He is taken along on her quest, which eventually takes him to the town of Tivoli and then to the city of Florence. It is here that he meets Virgil, the poet who is to become his greatest pupil, and where he is to meet Beatrice, a young woman with literary brilliance and a thirst for knowledge. This is a short novel which tells us much about the nature and personality of one of the most famous artists of the modern era. Dante’s journey begins at the bottom of the river Styx, where his soul emerges from the river in a white sheepskin cocoon. There he meets his dead mother and steps directly into the middle of hell. Here he meets Virgils, ‘the Virgilian men’, whose armour has turned to sulfur and whose mouths have turned into flames. Then he realises that his past lives have left him with no possessions – but that he has the potential for greatness because of his soul, which is ‘the purest of all substances’. Dante is torn between his humanity and his divine natures. He is scared of turning into a monster like the fallen angel Dante encountered on his way to heaven, because in Heaven he will be rewarded for having saved the world. Instead, he is faced with increasing wickedness on his way to paradise, and after a long battle with his uncle and his friend Dante, he finally commits suicide by jumping into the sea. However, when Virgil comforts him in heaven, Virgil reminds Dante that there are still things in the world worth living for, such as lovers, friends, and families. It is only then that Dante realises what he has done and transforms into an immortal. He goes on to become the most beloved, respected and most beloved artist in the whole world. Dante is born into a poor family in a town called Trimonti, in Italy in the year Dante lived. Dante was very close to his grandmother, for whom he spent a lot of his early years. When he was young, he was made to work as a cook in a family kitchen, where his uncle would paint the walls, and his mother would sew the linens. Dante was given a chance to learn the craft by his foster father, an artist, and began a great career as an artist that would take him to many faraway places on his travels. When he was twenty-one years old, during the time he was traveling through Italy on the way to Rome, his guide, Virgil, had him meet Virgil’s own father, Luca Pacioli. Virgil taught Dante that although the world is full of beauty, it also has its ugliest parts. In order to see the ugliest parts, though, one must also step-go through it. Virgil had taken up the book’s theme, ‘the greatest pains we experience in our daily lives’, and he wanted Dante to witness the everyday life of ordinary people, those living among the mountains or in the cities. When Virgil asked Dante to paint a portrait of the town of Trimonti, the young man readily agreed. The painting that follows, The Inferno, is one of the most famous paintings ever made. When the painting was completed, it was admired by many, and it was even asked to be displayed at the Louvre in Paris, where it hung for nearly twenty years before being destroyed. When the work was finally destroyed, it was not burned down but merely covered with a new layer of paint. This painting, along with many others that followed in Dante’s footsteps, is now available as a beautiful coffee table diorama. The most important thing about The Inferno Summary is that it offers us an inside look into the workings of the art world at that time. This is not a mere pop culture depiction of the times, nor is it purely historic. Dante’s inferno is a living art work, and the artists who worked during this time were painting not only for pleasure but also to contribute to the betterment of society. Although he portrays the hideousness of the lives of sinners, he also portrays the beauty of these lives, showing how art can transcend borders and differences. Through this detailed study of the times, we can learn not only how art was produced during this time, but also how the artists themselves viewed and treated their craft. Although the popularity of the painting has diminished over the years, its significance has never been lost. Today, this painting remains one of the most valuable holdings for an art history enthusiast. For those interested in learning more about the artists, as well as the artistic background of The Inferno Summary, there are several websites on-line that focus on this and other art history topics.