In the Middle Ring, the poets see suicidal sinners who have been turned into trees and bushes which are eaten by the demonic harpies. Dante also witnesses many promiscuous souls being forever pursued by hounds. The innermost ring is a burning desert where fire falls from the sky, raining down upon blasphemers and sodomites. The Eighth Circle of Hell is filled with fraudulent false prophets and the like. All those who practice false magic, business, etc.
As Dante follows Virgil he hesitates till Virgil mentions that he sent by Beatrice, and here the great and legendary poem of Dante Alighieri begins. In Dante’s Inferno, the first part of The Divine Comedy, he wrote about nine stages of Hell. The stages are circles, so there are nine circles. The first circle is “Limbo”, it has the non-Christians and those who were unbaptized. It had a castle with seven gates, each gate represents a virtue in the Bible, “Chastity, Temperance, Charity, Diligence, Patience, Kindness and Humility”.
Dante’s vision of Hell is incredibly structured, with levels and sublevels dictating certain punishments for certain sins. The least of the sins is being unbaptized; pagan; or being virtuous, but before Christianity arose. This circle is called Limbo, and it is like Heaven, only slightly less glamorous. The worst of the sins is betrayal and treachery, and these sinners are trapped in the Ninth Circle of Hell, called Treachery. The worst sinner according to Dante is Judas Iscariot, who betrayed Jesus.
Namely, Inferno excluded hypocrites and those who commit violence against themselves. While both are biblical sins, neither are suggested as being so heinous that the sinners are denied redemption by Christ. Joseph Kameen believes that ¨Dante primarily intended to explain biblical justice through his contrapasso,¨(Kameen), but ¨inevitably added some of his own invention,¨(Kameen). It could be possible that Dante was more focused on making ironic punishment for sinners than fair ones. Circles with more malevolent-minded individuals were allowed redemption, while these two were eternally
Dante’s Inferno is filled with imagery of suffering, which is oftentimes caused by famous creatures alluded to from mythology or history. In addition, many of the higher circles of Dante’s hell hold enough punishment without the presence of these creatures. Through an analysis of the Cantos populated by beasts and the Cantos that are not, we can speculate on the reasoning for the contrast in punishment. In the earlier Cantos, various beasts and demons populated the lower circles of hell. For instance, characters such as Minos, Cerberus, and Plutus stand at each gate to torment the shades trapped there.
In inferno, Dante divides Hell up into three major subdivisions based upon the type of sin committed, but two subdivisions that sit apart from the sinful divisions. Outside of Hell circles is the Vestibule, where the cowardly souls who refused to commit to either virtue or vice are punished. The First Circle is where those virtuous pagan souls who died unbaptized or who died prior to the coming of Christ reside. They can’t be saved, but neither are they truly punished in the same tortuous ways that Dante described as those deeper into Hell. Sins of incontinence are punished in Circles Two through Five.
In Canto IV, Dante addresses two theological issues of salvation. According to Christianity, all souls that lived sinless life but were not baptized, are denied salvation. Dante designates his first circle of hell, called Limbo, for those poor souls. In Limbo, they are not tortured, but the cannot have salvation. It was a very simple and brilliant solution.
The Neutrals in Dante 's inferno, serve as a symbol for selfishness. As these people committed themselves no cause but their own, they are left to their own vices, separated from both heaven and hell. Abandoned at the gate, just as they had abandoned everyone throughout their life. This punishment it a form of uniquely adapted justice, as they are getting in the afterlife what they fought in life. Being selfish is one of the worst sins, as it requires an extreme lack of empathy, and cowardice, as there are angels, who sided with neither heaven or hell in the wars, so they too are left with these so called persona non gratae.
In Dante’s inferno, there are nine circles of hell. The ninth and final circle those who reside here are buried in ice. The seriousness of the sin dictated
In the poem, Hell is depicted as nine circles of suffering located within the Earth. In the order of Limbo, Lust, Gluttony, Greed, Anger, Heresy, Violence, Fraud, and Treachery where within the sins reside. The sin of pride or vainglory is the primary sin, which all other sins develop upon. It is a sin that falls under the ninth circle, Treachery for those whom have betrayed a relationship such as Satan to God, or Judas to Jesus. Greed is the location for the covetous, those whom valued the momentary provision over faith and trust in God for their future.