The Divine Comedy of Dante Alighieri “Inferno” can bring tons of literature culture to the reader. It is full of allegories that sometimes leads the reader to its own interpretation and imagination. Allegory is a way of writing where ideas are defined with characters and events of a story. It could also be said that Allegory is what the reader can perceive from a work of literature. In the Canto IX (61-63), Dante gives a sense of pause in order to call on the attention of the reader as if Dante is speaking directly to the reader himself.
“O you possessed of sturdy intellects,
observe the teaching that is hidden here
beneath the veil of verses so obscure.” (Inf. 9.61-63)
These lines has caused a lot of importance among the fans of the comedy. According to the notes “The Divine Comedy of Dante Alighieri Inferno” a verse translation by Allen Mandelbaum, Dante asks the reader to “pay attention to the following scene” only twice through the Comedy. These verses have led to many interpretations. So, what is behind the teachings of the obscure verses; perhaps is the deep allegory he intended in the following words of his scene.
It is necessary to give some context to understand the attentiveness demand of Dante. Dante and Virgil were at the entrance of Dis where the sixth circle begins. Here, three monsters called Megaera, Allecto, and Tisiphone guarded the gate of Dis. They called Medusa to attack Virgil and Dante. Quickly, Virgil asked Dante to cover his eyes with his hands thus looking at Medusa would turn him into stone. Virgil also used his own hands to cover Dante’s eyes. Right then, Dante the poet calls the attention of the reader. Dante is now blind, yet he manages to describe his surroundings.
“O you p...
... middle of paper ...
...ctacular passages of the Comedy. Here, Dante was able to cause controversy among readers and putted many to think, analyze, and come up with their interpretations. It could be simply Dante’s geniality to describe his surroundings while blinded with Virgil hands. He set the scenario for the reader to allegorize his words. On the other hand, he probably just wanted to alert the reader about the obscure words nonetheless focus one to “observe the teaching” behind his verses. Another view which illustrates sort of a religious aspect of the scene. There are many interpretations but regardless of how one might perceive these verses, Dante truly leaves a dottrina among the humans that have had the pleasure of reading his Divine Comedy.
Dante, Alighieri, and Allen Mandelbaum. Inferno: A Verse Translation. New York: Bantam, 1982. Print.
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