Inferno Essay

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Paul Frank Inferno Essay In Dante’s Inferno, Dante writes of a descent through hell and of the sins and their punishments. A main idea is that the further one descends, the worse the sin is, and in turn, the harsher the punishments. However, some of this can be refuted, for in today’s world, some sins may not seem as harsh as they were seen eight hundred years ago and vice versa. Specifically, those sins seen in the seventh circle of hell, which houses those who were violent in their lives. Out of all the terrible sins to commit, one sin will always be the worst of all, and that’s the sinners who commit violence towards others. These people are purposely placed in the first ring of the seventh circle of hell to symbolize that their sins are the harshest of all and they are to be punished first. The first ring has the sinners immersed in Phlegethon, a river of boiling blood and fire. How deep one is immersed is dependent on how violent they were to humans or how many people they damaged or killed. For example Dante first pass those submerged up to their eyebrows (“Some stood up to their lashes in that torrent”) for their sins, “These were the kings of bloodshed and despoilment. Here they pay for their ferocity. Here is Alexander, and Dionysius, who brought long years of grief to Sicily.” This quote is very significant when analyzing the punishments of bad sins. This quote is referring to Alexander the Great, a man with a substantial amount of blood on his hands, and for this he is submerged very deep in the river. The river does get shallower and it is here where those who have done the least violence to others stand, “its level fell/until it cooked no more than the feet of dammed.” This punishment is less harsh to those who have killed less people and the ones who have killed the most will be down deep in the bloody river suffering. From the life lived eight

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