Divine Justice In Dante's Inferno

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Dante Alighieri’s Inferno explores the vastness of hell while illustrating his political, religious, and artistic beliefs. In Canto 15, he comes across the Sodomites walking through fiery rain in the Seventh Circle, one of which he recognizes as his friend and mentor Brunetto Latini. Dante’s encounter with Brunetto emphasizes his religious belief in the righteousness of God while clarifying that although Florentine politics are important, religion is his primary motivator. At first glance, Brunetto’s appearance is like many of Dante’s periodic mentions of his friends, mentors, and enemies- either relatively meaningless or to shed some point on his hate for the Black Guelphs (those who exiled him from Florence) or likeness for the White Guelphs on his side. Brunetto was a Guelph writer who also spent many years in exile and wrote allegorical journeys that greatly inspired Dante to write The Divine Comedy.
The structure and tone of the passage reveals a greater point on the nature and equality of God’s love for man. Although other people in the story have been friends, Brunetto’s encounter is unique because
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There is no evidence that Brunetto was a Sodomite, he was married with several children in his life, yet he is placed deep down in hell despite Dante’s great admiration for him. Dante exclaims to Brunetto, “you taught me how man makes himself eternal; and while I live, my gratitude for that must always be apparent in my words” (Dante XV. 85-87). If he wanted to, Dante could place Brunetto in Paradiso, even in Purgatorio, but he does not. His decision to place someone he cares for and respects deeply, both personally and politically, in the Seventh circle of hell shows that this text goes beyond political anger or grudges, that every type of person sins and God is the only being that can rightfully

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