Dante’s Inferno Important terms, symbols, characters Important Terms




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Dante’s Inferno

Important terms, symbols, characters

Important Terms

  • 1. allegory- An expression, by means of symbolic fictional characters and actions, of truths about human conduct and experience.  

  • 2. terza rima- An Italian form iambic poetry having sets of three lines, the middle line of each set riming with the first and last of the succeeding: ababcbcdc. It was invented by Dante.  

  • 3. epic poem-A long narrative poem with an exalted style, theme, and hero.



Important Symbols

  • 3 divisions of the Divine Comedy

  • 3 types of sins

    • incontinence- lack of control over our passions and desires
    • violence- vicious and fierce behavior
    • fraud- deception, trickery or deceit
  • Can you find more symbols of 3?



Important Characters

  • 1. Dante- the author and the main character

  • 2. Virgil- Dante's guide through the Inferno and the Purgatorio. The real historical Virgil was long-dead even in Dante's time. Dante, himself a poet, had admired Virgil's poetry greatly and so "reincarnates" him to be his guide on the journey. Virgil represents reason.

  • 3. Beatrice- while not actually a character in the Inferno ( she does not appear until the Paradisio) her influence is felt throughout the whole of the Divine Comedy. She represents divine love or faith.





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