Analysis Of Dante 's ' The ' Of Hell '

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Jacob Barnett
I think Dante’s description of Hell is a wonderful work of literature. Dante uses numerous literary techniques to describe his envisionment of Hell to the reader. In my opinion, one of the most affective techniques used by Dante is symbolism. It would be a very difficult task to compile a brief list of significant symbols from the Cantos that we read in class. Dante utilized many symbols throughout each canto. Some of the symbols that Dante used in Inferno are well defined and easy to interpret, while other symbols are much more difficult to recognize and understand. For this paper, I will be analyzing multiple symbols from Dante’s Inferno. Some of the symbols came from the Canto’s that were included in class readings while others were depicted throughout the Canto’s that were not assigned readings.
I found that one of the major symbols that reoccurred throughout the poem is the idea of a continuing journey. This was depicted in the very first line of the poem when Dante 's life was compared to a road or pathway which Dante is halfway through. The specificity of the piece noting that Dante is “halfway through” further emphasizes the symbolism of continuing a journey by out rightly stating that he has begun but not yet finished. Therefore, when Dante strays from the intended path in the beginning of the first Canto he has symbolically “strayed from the right kind of life”. Dante’s journey with Virgil through the many layers of hell also
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