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Dante’s Inferno Essay


Homer is regarded as a legendary Greek due to his great works of literature such as “The journey to the Land of the Dead.” This epic poem focuses on Odysseus, a Greek hero who makes his long journey back home to Hades after the fall of Troy. It also focuses on Aeneas heading out to Orcas as well Dante going out to the Christian Hell in the famous Inferno.

This essay will focus on the reasons why Odysseus and Aeneas make the journeys to Dante and Orcas respectively as well as their findings and the lessons learnt from the people that they did converse with.

Observing the Greek hero Odysseus, he is returning to his home in the island of Ithaca after the Trojan War ended after a decade. He had a son called Telemachus who lived with his mother Penelope. Odysseus had stayed so long from his home and his wife Penelope. Subsequently, numerous suitors came to Ithaca Island to persuade and get Penelope’s hand in marriage as well as misusing the wealth of Odysseus that he had left behind.

During Odysseus journey, he met a couple of people on the way such as the goddess Athena who agrees to inform his son Telemachus of his pre-arrival using her supernatural powers. Athena visits Telemachus who is overjoyed to hear of his father’s final return home.

Odysseus also meets calypso who provides clothing, food, and clothing to him. A vicious storm attacks his raft, wrecks it and he has to seek shelter among a pile of leaves. The next morning, he meets Nausicaa who is the daughter of Arete and Alcinous. She besieges him to plea for assistance from her parents who welcome him. During his stay with Nausicaa’s parents, he encounters a blind singer Demodocus narrating two poems.

The first poem was about the obscure Trojan War known as “Quarrel of Odysseus and Achilles” while the second poem was about a love affair between the two gods, Ares and Aphrodite. After he is through, Odysseus begs him to recite the Trojan War poem once more and this result in Odysseus revealing to his hosts that he led the Trojan War.

Odysseus’s return to Ithaca is assisted by several comrades for example Phaeacians who are skilled mariners that delivered him to one of Ithaca’s hidden harbor. He is also assisted by Athena who disguises him as a beggar, reason being to learn the lifestyle of the people of the place he had left a decade ago.

Meanwhile Odysseus finds shelter among one of his former slaves Eumaeus as Telemachus and arrives at Eumaeus’ hut as goddess Athena pre-arranges the re-uniting of father and son. Meanwhile the suitors are still pursuing Penelope while wasting Odysseus property. Odysseus and his son plan to eradicate the suitors with the help of Athena the following day. On the day of nemesis, all the suitors are slain with the help of Athena, Telemachus, Eumaeus and Philoteus, who is a cow herder (Oswarld and Homer 1).

Finally, Odysseus identifies himself to Penelope as they both re-ignite their lost relationship. Odysseus’ adventure did teach him several lessons one being the importance of a family as a unit of the society. Odysseus never looses hope of re-uniting with his family despite a decade of being apart. He also learns the value of friendship and courtesy as he is assisted along the way by several strangers for example Nausicaa, Phaeacians and Athena. Aeneas is portrayed as a hero in the poem.

The Aeneid displays Aeneas as a Trojan who is destined to have a found a new civilization in Italy and had to run away to Orcas with his father and son after the demise of his wife when their city burned down.

The reason why Aeneas and his family run away is because of the domestic affair between their king and his concubines which turns into a war of vengeance. One of the Trojan citizens had apparently stolen one of the most beautiful concubines in the land belonging to the king which in turn led to the king slaying all the Trojans in the land.

Along the way, they met several semi-gods for example Venus, who is Aeneas mother who appears to him disguised directing him to travel to Carthage. A city believed to have been built by one beautiful Dido. Dido is a goddess who had chosen to ignore the marriage requests of her family members. However, Dido welcomes Aeneas and his crew warmly going as far as ordering a sumptuous banquet.

The latter months that follow, Dido apparently falls in love with Aeneas however, their epic love story is ended when the messenger god Mercury to remind Aeneas of his great destiny (Ed 1). Aeneas also encounters the ghost of his late father who guides him to travel to Cumae, Italy, to reconnect with him. This is the place where he meets a prophetess known as Sybil who informs him of his destiny to establish a new city of Troy along the west coast of central Italy.

Subsequently, Sybil also escorts Aeneas into Hades where he is supposed to meet his father. As seen in the context above, Aeneas learnt very vital lessons from the few people he met. His ghostly parents did direct him on the way to go claiming he is to revolutionize Italy as a nation. His encounter with the prophetess led to him knowing the exact place he was to build his new empire called Latium.

Observing the question why Ulysses in Dante’s Medieval Christian is hell, one major reason is about a certain soul known as ‘Tuscan Vanni Fucci’ who identified Dante from earth.

Dante and Virgil are on their way to the seventh pouch of the Eighth Circle of Hell. Christianity in the context is observed when Fucci curses God with an obscene gesture in absolute anger which leads to him being overwhelmed by serpents. In the second part of the question, how does the inferno compare, in the Dante’s inferno there are serpents who are chasing the lost and cursed souls in hell.

The serpents would also engulf the souls after capturing them. Aeneid compares them in rise and fall of troy when he is giving the sad tale of their journeys to Dido. The high priest in Troy warned the people not to receive any gifts from the Greeks. However, the Trojans were adamant and instantly, two serpents suddenly rose from the sea seizing the high priest Lacoon and his two sons. Afterwards the Greek army invaded the land of troy destroying everything.

Observing the structure of the Dante’s Hell, it is divided into several sections depending on the type of sin committed by a person while on earth. Each sinner is placed in his or her own category for example Fucci explains clearly that he is placed on there for the sin of robbing a sacristy.

Thieves were placed under the seventh pouch category. Finally, the legend of Odysseus in the Greek history is regarded as an epic narrative in Italy. The journeys made by these great heroes have been elaborated fully in line with the great destinies of these heroes. The changes that some of them met after staying for decades are elaborated fully above as well as how they adapted to these changes.

Works Cited

Lawall, Sarah. The Norton Anthology of Western Literature. New York; W.W. Norton, 2005.Print.

Oswald, Peter. Odysseus. Indiana: Oberon Books Press, 1999. Print.

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"Dante’s Inferno." IvyPanda, 27 July 2018, ivypanda.com/essays/dantes-inferno/.

1. IvyPanda. "Dante’s Inferno." July 27, 2018. https://ivypanda.com/essays/dantes-inferno/.


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IvyPanda. "Dante’s Inferno." July 27, 2018. https://ivypanda.com/essays/dantes-inferno/.

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IvyPanda. 2018. "Dante’s Inferno." July 27, 2018. https://ivypanda.com/essays/dantes-inferno/.

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IvyPanda. (2018) 'Dante’s Inferno'. 27 July.

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