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Dante's Inferno: Canto XIII
Transcript of Dante's Inferno: Canto XIII
Canto XIII Overview Dante and Virgil have just crossed the river and entered the second circle of the seventh level of Hell. Dante is now exposed to the punishment and environment that sinners face when they commit suicide of themselves or of their goods. He converses with two of the sinners and learns of their life story and reasons for taking their own lives, and he also witnesses another sinner receive the beginning of his punishment. Setting and Souls Location: Seventh Level, Second Circle
Where: The Woods of the Suicides
Souls: Dante and Virgil
- New Souls We Meet in Canto XIII:
1. Pier delle Vigne
2. Unknown Florentian
3. Jacopo da Sant' Andrea of Padua
4. Lano da Siena Types of Sinners The sinners of Canto XIII were those who had been violent towards themselves, and had harmed themselves by squandering their goods.
"We had been souls of serpents." "Nessus had not yet reached the other side when we moved forward into woods unmarked by any path." "None infests thickets
that are as rough or
dense as this. Here the
repellent Harpies make
their nests." Seventh Circle Punishment Individuals who had committed suicide faced the punishment of having no physical body.
Instead, they are encases in the trunks of trees
and thornbushes. First, they are planted wherever Fortune flings them down and are grown into saplings. Then, as soon as they have leaves, they are eaten by the Harpies, which is very painful, since they can feel the leaves being removed by the talons. Curse of Sin Dante's Reactions Dante, as usual, has a lot of pity for the sinners in the Woods of the Suicides. "One shoot of a mighty thornbush," " You question him, and ask what you discern would satisfy me; I cannot because of pity that fills my heart." Harpy (n.): was one of the winged spirits best known for constantly stealing all food from Phineusand his men at sea. See vicious. "They have broad wings, a human neck and face, clawed feet, and swollen, feathered bellies; they caw their lamentations in the eerie trees." Hades' servants New Souls Pier delle Vigne - a minister to Emperor Frederick II. He was one of Frederick's favorites and was highly looked upon. The other ministers of Frederick were very jealous and spread rumors of Pier, those of treason and etc. Disgusted and in disdain, Pier killed himself. The Unkown Florentian - A citizen of Florence who tells Dante and Virgil of where he is from, and he describes how Florence switched the patron Mars for John the Baptist. He also admits at the very end that he had committed suicide. Jacopo da Sant' Andrea of Padua - notorios spender during the era of the Crusades, was eventually killed. Lano da Siena, a well-known spendthrift, died fighting the Aretines in 1287. "My mind, in its disdainful temper, assumed dying would be a way to escape disdain, making me treat my juster self unjustly." Allusuion Towards the end of the canto, Dante the writer refers to the city of Florence changing their patron from Mars, the pagan god of war, to John the Baptist, the Christian saint. After Florence was attacked in the 400's, Mars' statue went up again and he was the patron of the city. Since Florence was unstable in the civil war when John the Baptist was the patron, it can be interpreted symbolically that Mars was a symbol of restoring order and providing Florence the ability to hold one's own in war. "The art of Mars will always make her grieve." "And I-I made my own house be my gallows." Works Cited "Art Renewal Center :: Gustave Dore :: The Inferno, Canto 13, Line 120: âHaste Now,â the Foremost Cried, ânow Haste Thee Death!â." Art Renewal Center. N.p., n.d. Web. 30 Jan. 2013.
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