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Sympathy For The Sinners Essay

883 words - 4 pages

“Midway on our lives journey, I found myself in a dark woods, the right road lost” (Cantos I 392)
 There is said to be three major parts of everyone’s journey on the path to judgement day; birth, life and death. As one travels through these three parts they must continue to push forward only following the right path (Christianity) and if one is to stray from the path they may lose their way to salvation. In Dante’s The Divine Comedy we travel alongside one such man who has lost his way, Dante the Pilgrim (he is to represent the “every day” man). As he awakens in a dark woods, a symbol for his straying from the righteous path, he is not truly aware of what is to come. As his journey begins ...view middle of the document...

As we reach the end of cantos one and two we enter through the “gates of hell”.
 The nine circles of hell have an underlying symbolism of the seven deadly sins; lust, gluttony, wrath. In the first circle of hell we are greeted by the Virtuous Pagans, here recedes the great poets Homer, Ovid, Lucan, and Horace, who not only greet Dante but sees him as one of their own. In the second circle of hell (Lustful) we see Dante sympathy towards the damned, as he listens to Francesca’s story of adultery “And all the while one of the two spirits spoke these words, the other wept, in such a way that pity blurred my senses; I swooned as though to die, and fell to Hell’s floor” (Cantos V 409). As he travels to the third circle of hell we are met by the third trinity, or the three headed monster Cerberus who represents not only the protector of the sinners but gluttony as well. As they escape passed Cerberus, Dante is greeted by someone he does not recognize, after the man states his name Dante puts two and two together and is confused by why he is punished. After Ciacco explains how his people detested him Dante speaks, “Your grievous state weights down on me, it makes me want to weep.” ( Cantos VI 411).
 As Dante travels farther into hell and the sins increase; his sympathy towards the wrongdoers has changed. As he reaches...

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