Introduction: and violence in the upper circles of

Introduction:

Why  did  I  choose
 this  topic?

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Main part:

My  observations  (  Interesting
 characters  /  Influence
 on  moral  structure 
)   

Conclusion:

 

 

 

 

 

When  I 
read   The  Inferno 
without  any  prior 
cognition  of  the 
relationship  between  the 
Greek  and  Roman 
cultures  I  was 
confused  by  Dante’s 
design  of  Hell. 
Dante  has  placed 
the  characters  whose 
sins  included  lust, 
wrath,  and  violence 
in  the  upper 
circles  of  Hell; 
in  the  lower, 
more  evil  circles 
are  sinners  who 
lied,  deceived,  and 
committed  treason.

The  Inferno  as  I  said  earlier
 has  a  lot  of  references
 to 
Greek  culture  ( Greek Mythology ),  and in that topic I’d like to tell you about
characters whose  made  me 
think.  At  the 
first  sight,  names  of
 protectors   of  each 
circle  were  not 
so  interesting  for me. In my  opinion, 
the  main  reason  is
 explanation of  their  functions 
in  hell:   

                                      Canto 3

“All  those
 who  perish  in  the  wrath  of  God

 Here  meet
 together  out  of  every  land;

 And  ready  are  they  to
 pass  o’er  the  river,

 Because  celestial  Justice  spurs  them
 on,

So  that  their  fear
 is  turned  into  desire.

This  way  there
 never  passes  a  good  soul;

 And  hence
 if  Charon  doth
 complain  of  thee,

 Well  mayst
 thou  know  now  what
 his  speech  imports.”

In  that  part of 
poem  we recognized  that  Charon  resolves
 problem  of  transportation.
In mythology Charon  carries  souls 
of  the  newly 
deceased  across the
rivers  Styx  and Acheron that divided the world of the
living from the world of the dead. A coin to pay  Charon  for  passage, generally
an obolus  or 
danake,   which were  sometimes placed in or on the mouth of a dead man.

 

                                  Canto
5

 There  standeth 
Minos  horribly,  and 
snarls;

 Examines  the 
transgressions  at  the 
entrance;

 Judges,  and 
sends  according  as 
he  girds  him.

 

 

In  circle  two,  Minos  judges
 the  sinners  and  decides
                                                                    how 
they  will  serve 
one’s sentence.  Minos  as  I  know                                                                      is
 a   son of 
 Zeus and  Europe  whom  we
                                                                                          know
from  Greek  Mythology. 
Also  in   Homer’s 
                                                                                                                                    Odyssey  our  character 
plays  the  same 
role  of  judge 
in  another  world:

 “Minos,
glorious son of Zeus… holding a golden sceptre, and passing judgments on the
dead, who stood and sat around the king, seeking justice, throughout the
spacious gates of Hades’ home” (Homer, 11.733-37)

 According  to  the
 Odyssey  he  spoke  with 
Zeus every  nine  years 
or  fo r nine  years. 
He  got  his laws 
straight  from  Zeus 
himself.  When  Minos’ 
son  Androgeos  had 
won  the  Panathenaic Games  the
king,  Aegeus,  sent 
him  to  Marathon 
to fight  a  bull, 
resulting  in  the 
death  of  Androgeos. Outraged,  Minos 
went  to  Athens 
to  avenge  his 
son,  and  on 
the  way  he 
camped  at  Megara 
where  Nisos  lived. 

Learning  that  Nisos’ 
strength  came  from 
his  hair,  Minos 
gained  the  love 
of  Scylla  and 
her  aid  in 
cutting  off  her 
father’s  hair  so 
that  he  could  conquer  the 
city.

However,  After  the   victory,   he
punished  Scylla  for 
her  treachery  against 
her  father  by 
tying  her  to 
a  boat  and 
dragging  her  until 
she  drowned.  I cannot  explain his decision,  but  he  was 
just  or  cruel. Perhaps,   it  was
 one 
of  the  reasons  why 
Dante  used  this 
character  to  judging  sinners.

 

                               Canto 6

Cerberus, monster cruel and uncouth,

With his three gullets like a dog is barking

Over the people that are there submerged.

Red eyes he has, and unctuous beard and black,

 And belly
large, and armed with claws his hands;

He rends the spirits, flays, and quarters them.

 

Cerberus
looked like a three-headed dog with a snake’s tail, on the back of a
snake’s head, as eerie as his mother. According to other descriptions, he has
50 heads or 100 heads, and in another mythology, he is depicted with a human
powerful body and hands and one head of a mad dog. In one of the hands was a
severed head of a bull that killed with its breath and on the other hand the head of a goat, which with its eyes hit the victims. In the works of
vase painting sometimes
depicted biceps.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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