The Just Punishments in Dante’s Inferno Essay

1050 Words Nov 29th, 2008 5 Pages
The Just Punishments in Dante’s Inferno Inferno, written by Dante in the early fourteenth century, is a poem about Dante’s, the main characters, journey through Hell and signifies the nature of sin on Earth and punishment in Hell (Gardner et al online). Those who sinned while on Earth are justly condemned to different levels of punishments in Hell, relative to their sins on Earth. Each of the nine circles of Hell represents a worse sin, and therefore, a crueler punishment. The categorized punishments in Hell that Dante Alighieri assigns are symbolically fair and representative of the sins committed on Earth, given the time period and Christian values context from which this poem was written.
The first inhabitants, just outside of
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In Limbo, one merely walks around and talks to other ill-fated souls. This seems appropriate given their unawareness of Christ and the existence of Heaven and Hell. Limbo is not as much a punishment as it is a neutral place to put those who, by no fault of their own, were ignorant to the rules of entry to Heaven. The problem with Limbo in Inferno is Dante’s physical placement of it in the first circle of Hell. Given that those in Limbo never had the chance to live a Christian life, the placement of Limbo should be outside the first circle of Hell. If Limbo and the Ante Inferno physically switched positions, than Dante's reasoning and punishments for the two groups would seem more appropriate.
The second circle of Hell is home to the lustful, such as Cleopatra and Helen of Troy (Inferno V 55). Those who allowed their lives and everyone’s around them to be hurled around by their untamed actions, experience an eternity of being hurled around by tormenting winds and storms. Lustful individuals, who take action on their untamed desires, often have no regard for the consequences their actions will have on others’ in their lives. When their lustful and immoral activities come to be publicly known, many people’s lives, such as the significant other of the sinner, are thrown upside down and hurled around. Chaos and confusion is created in the lives of many innocent people when

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