Inferno: Pagan Ideas In Dante's Inferno

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“I testify to everyone who hears the words of the prophecy of this book: if anyone adds to them, God will add to him the plagues which are written in this book” (Revelation 22.18). As this verse clearly shows, God commands men not to change his word. Contrary to what God commanded, however, many people have tried to distort the Bible from what it truly states, to what they want it to say. For example, the works of a poet named Dante affected the ideas of many men from the time of the Renaissance. Because Dante’s poetry was full of Christian though and terminology, the people of the Renaissance deemed it as Christian theology. However, Dante’s poetry was also filled with Pagan ideas that the oblivious people of the Renaissance accepted…show more content…
According to the Bible, hell is an “eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels”. (The Holy Bible, NIV, Matthew 25:41) However, in the first book of The Divine Comedy, Inferno, rather than being tortured, Satan tortures others by devouring them. “Each mouth devoured a sinner clenched within, frayed by the fangs like flax beneath a brake; three at a time he tortured them for sin” (The Divine Comedy 1: Hell, 34.55-57). Dante centers the purpose of hell around only punishing people – an idea that is not biblical at all. Another way The Divine Comedy is flawed is in the significance of Dante’s guide. Throughout Dante’s journey in hell and Purgatory, Dante was guided by Virgil. (The Divine Comedy 1: Hell, 1.102) This is an interesting aspect of the story because Virgil happened to be a Roman poet who, through his book The Aeneid, convinced many Romans to believe that Caesar was a god. By placing Virgil as his guide in these books, Dante seemed to lean toward the very non-Christian ideas of the Pagans. The last place that Dante’s writing is flawed is the many extra details he attempts to place into his writing as biblical. For example, Dante gave an in-depth description of hell, stating that it was split into many levels with punishments fit for different types of sins. Secondly, Dante also split up Heaven into many different spheres. Finally, he added an entirely new step to get to Heaven: Purgatory. In the Bible, not a single one of these details are ever stated. All of these details that Dante added to his writing conflict the
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