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Dante’s Inferno Cantos I & II. The Dark Wood “Midway in our life’s journey, I went astray from the straight road and woke to find myself alone in a dark.

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Presentation on theme: "Dante’s Inferno Cantos I & II. The Dark Wood “Midway in our life’s journey, I went astray from the straight road and woke to find myself alone in a dark."— Presentation transcript:

1 Dante’s Inferno Cantos I & II

2 The Dark Wood “Midway in our life’s journey, I went astray from the straight road and woke to find myself alone in a dark wood” (1-3). –Dante’s age- 35 (according to bible) –Pretense for the poem He was heading down the wrong path in life

3 The Dark Wood Characterization “I never saw so drear,so rank, so arduous a wilderness!/ Its very memory gives a shape to fear/ Death could scarce be more bitter than that place! (4-6) –Presents setting for what is to follow “How I came to it I cannot rightly say,/ so drugged and loose with sleep had I become/ when I first wandered there from the True Way.” (10-13) Doesn’t know how or why he’s there

4 The Dark Wood Symbol of Divine Illumination “…Its shoulders glowed already with the sweet rays of that planet/ whose virtue leads men straight on every road,/ and the shining strengthened men against the fright “(17-19) Reflects the way to heaven Seeking salvation The True Path

5 Struggle of Sin and Virtue Struggles to climb  “I faced a spotted Leopard, all tremor and flaw” (33)  “...I shook with dread/ at the sight of a great Lion” (43-44)  “...a She-Wolf drove upon me, a starved horror” (48) St ruggles with the animals  Leopard- lust  Lion- pride  She-wolf- envy (avarice) Animals represent the 3 divisions of hell 7 deadly sins: greed, gluttony, lust, envy, sloth, wrath, pride

6 The Dark Wood Easter season, Good Friday- resurrection of Christ “…with him to light the new creation…the sweet season of commemoration” (39-40).  Rebirth/ resurrection  1300 A.D. Symbolization of straight road and dark wood Serves as a means to transition Dante and Virgil to the entrance of hell

7 Virgil “…a presence gathered before on the discolored air, the figure of one who seemed hoarse from long silence.” (62-64) Represents human reason –Actual mentor –Shows his admiration for him “’And are you then that Virgil and that fountain of purest speech…For you are my true master and first author the sole maker form whom I drew the breath of that sweet style whose measures have brought me honor.” (77-84)

8 Dante’s Guide Virgil Shade Sub Julio Virgil is the symbol of Human Reason- he will lead Dante through hell

9 Virgil “…I will be your guide and lead you forth through an eternal place. There you shall see the ancient spirits tried In endless pain, and hear their lamentation as each bemoans the second death of souls” ( )

10 Virgil “To which, if it is still your wish to climb,/ a worthier spirit shall be sent to guide you./ With her shall I leave you, for the King of Time,/ Who reigns on high, forbids me to come there…”( ) –He will take him as far as he can- St. Peter’s gate (purgatory) –He can’t go farther than God has permitted

11 Canto II The Descent Why Dante? “I was a soul among the souls of Limbo, when a lady so blessed and beautiful, I prayed her to order and command my will, called to me. Her eyes were kindled from the lamps of Heaven. Her voice reached through me, tender, sweet, and low. An angels voice, a music of its own” (53-57) Beatrice saw Dante taking the wrong path

12 Canto II Beatrice “Beatrice who send you to him. I come from the blessed height for which I yearn (heaven). Love called me here” She worried that Dante would be lead astray so wanted to show him the right way Lucia- allegory that represents Divine Light- Patron Saint of Eyesight (saw Dante)

13 The Descent Beatrice “…my dearest friend, and fortune’s foe, has strayed/ onto a friendless shore and stands beset/ by such distresses, that he turns afraid/ From the True Way, and news of him in Heaven/ rumors my dread he is already lost.” (61- 64) –Says love led her to help –Dante’s love of his life in reality

14 The Descent How is Beatrice able to come to hell? –“But tell me how you dare venture thus so far from the wide heaven of your joy to which your thoughts yearn back from the abyss” (84-86) “I am so made by God’s all-seeing mercy your anguish does not touch me, and the flame of this great burning has no power upon me” (91-93) –Power of God allows her

15 Lucia and Rachel “’Thy faithful one is sorely pressed;/ in his distresses I commend him to thee/ Lucia/…saying to me Beatrice, true praise of God,/ why dost thy sake he left the vulgar crowd’”( ) Beatrice = Divine love Lucia = patron St. of eyesight


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