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Dante's Inferno Paperback – January 19, 2010

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Editorial Reviews

From The New Yorker

"Virgil's design for Dante, that he will 'grow used/to the sad stench,' for 'after a short while/human senses numb,' does not extend to this volume's readers; our senses are continually jostled and primed by the unexpected shifts in style." --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

Review

"It seems right that Dante would provide such an unusual meeting ground of cultures, eras, and writers: his voice took in many voices. Curious, questing, and provocative, this literary project should be a signpost to anyone who cares about language." -- Publisbers Weekly

"Many hands have made, in the present case, not light but lasting work." -- -- James Merrill

"What drew such disparate poets as Amy Clampitt, W. S. Merwin, Sharon Olds, Galway Kinnell, Mark Strand, C.K. Williams, and Alfred Corn into the translating project? The glory of the poem itself, the grand enterprise of making a work written 700 years ago beautiful for a new generation." -- Rebecca Pepper Sinkler, Editor, The New York Times Book Review

Divina Commedia: Inferno. Canto 1 by Dante Alighieri
Divina Commedia: Inferno. Canto 10 by Dante Alighieri
Divina Commedia: Inferno. Canto 11. by Dante Alighieri
Divina Commedia: Inferno. Canto 12. by Dante Alighieri
Divina Commedia: Inferno. Canto 13. by Dante Alighieri
Divina Commedia: Inferno. Canto 14. by Dante Alighieri
Divina Commedia: Inferno. Canto 15. by Dante Alighieri
Divina Commedia: Inferno. Canto 16. by Dante Alighieri
Divina Commedia: Inferno. Canto 17. by Dante Alighieri
Divina Commedia: Inferno. Canto 18. by Dante Alighieri
Divina Commedia: Inferno. Canto 19 by Dante Alighieri
Divina Commedia: Inferno. Canto 2 by Dante Alighieri
Divina Commedia: Inferno. Canto 20 by Dante Alighieri
Divina Commedia: Inferno. Canto 21 by Dante Alighieri
Divina Commedia: Inferno. Canto 22 by Dante Alighieri
Divina Commedia: Inferno. Canto 23 by Dante Alighieri
Divina Commedia: Inferno. Canto 24 by Dante Alighieri
Divina Commedia: Inferno. Canto 25 by Dante Alighieri
Divina Commedia: Inferno. Canto 26 by Dante Alighieri
Divina Commedia: Inferno. Canto 27 by Dante Alighieri
Divina Commedia: Inferno. Canto 28 by Dante Alighieri
Divina Commedia: Inferno. Canto 29 by Dante Alighieri
Divina Commedia: Inferno. Canto 3 by Dante Alighieri
Divina Commedia: Inferno. Canto 30 by Dante Alighieri
Divina Commedia: Inferno. Canto 31 by Dante Alighieri
Divina Commedia: Inferno. Canto 32 by Dante Alighieri
Divina Commedia: Inferno. Canto 33 by Dante Alighieri
Divina Commedia: Inferno. Canto 4 by Dante Alighieri
Divina Commedia: Inferno. Canto 5 by Dante Alighieri
Divina Commedia: Inferno. Canto 6 by Dante Alighieri
Divina Commedia: Inferno. Canto 7 by Dante Alighieri
Divina Commedia: Inferno. Canto 8 by Dante Alighieri
Divina Commedia: Inferno. Canto 9 by Dante Alighieri
-- Table of Poems from Poem Finder® --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Del Rey (January 19, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0345522230
  • ISBN-13: 978-0345522238
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.8 x 8.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (26 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,650,534 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Dante Alighieri was born in 1265 in Florence. His family, of minor nobility, was not wealthy nor especially distinguished; his mother died when he was a child, his father before 1283. At about the age of 20 he married Gemma Donati, by whom he had three children. Little is known of Dante's formal education-it is likely to have included study with the Dominicans, the Augustinians, and the Franciscans in Florence, and at the university in Bologna. In 1295 he entered Florentine politics and in the summer of 1300 he became one of the six governing Priors of Florence. In 1301, the political situation forced Dante and his party into exile. For the rest of his life he wandered through Italy, perhaps studied at Paris, while depending for refuge on the generosity of various nobles. He continued to write and at some point late in life he took asylum in Ravenna where he completed the Divine Commedia and died, much honoured, in 1321.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

31 of 33 people found the following review helpful By Martin (Madrid) on June 4, 2011
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Dante's Inferno is wonderful, but has to be read in a decent translation. I ordered this one because I thought it would be interesting to see how different translators handled it. But something has gone wrong. This Classic Collections version of Dante is not as advertised. It's actually an atrocious old translation by the Rev. Cary, poorly put together, and with no proper table of contents, etc. In any case, it's available elsewhere for free. I'm not sure whether I can return Kindle books, so I'll probably just throw it away.
If Amazon check out these reviews, please can they remove or adapt the inaccurate information on this one.
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12 of 14 people found the following review helpful By "hirofantv" on April 26, 2002
Format: Paperback
led by 20 contemporary poets who offer their own stylistic interpretations of Dante's great Inferno. So many translations have been done that the goal of this book seems to me not to be to attempt another Inferno of syntax that's become standardised, but to introduce Dante to the world of contemporary poetry by meshing the classic with the eclectic array of poets in this book. Most actually do seem to want to do a somewhat standardised translation for their canto/s, but new ideas are welcome. This is not a book to read to familiarise oneself with the Inferno, but it is a great book to read to think about evolution of classicism through these writers.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By r.doolittle on May 28, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
The book was re-written and I could not follow the story at all. I think this version should be reviewed and possibly taken off the list.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Timo Tuokkola on May 29, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I don't have a problem with the story, but the way the e-book is formatted makes it almost completely unreadable.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Sometimes classics are difficult to read because the translation is hard to make. Unfortunately for Dante's Inferno there are good translations out there that make the text come alive for The English reader. But this translation is poorly done and difficult to read. I would suggest trying a more tried and true English translation than this one.

That aside, Dante's Inferno is the first in the three volume series of "The Divine Comedy" and is the most well know. In this first volume our writer finds himself being lead into hell by his "bard" who will be his guide. He is going to find many of his earthly friends there. The ones that he felt had things pretty well figured out. Unfortunately they are in different areas of "Hell" being tortured for their beliefs. There is the area for the Prideful, an area for the Glutton's, an area for the Narcissistic, an area for Religious Leaders who didn't really know Jesus Christ. Each area has people being tortured in different ways depending on what Satan feels would be the most torturous.

It is my understanding that when Dante wrote this many of the characters were his present friends in society. They knew who they were and when they read the story they were highly offended to find that Dante believed they were headed to Hell.

It's an interesting read, it brings home lots of questions that will make you examine your own life. But I think a different translation might be a better source for you.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Dante's Divine Comedy has stood the test of time, and the poem itself doesn't need me to defend it on Amazon. This is an interesting edition, though, recommended for video game enthusiasts. The art insert is neat, and the book includes a thoughtful introduction by Jonathan Knight, the game's executive producer.

The Longfellow translation can be a bit archaic, but the notes section is helpful. The notes are printed in a separate section after the poem, rather than on the opposite page or at the end of a canto. It can be a bit annoying to flip back and forth, but it does keep the notes from breaking the flow of Dante's language.

Bottom line, this is a good book for fans of video games and classic literature (maybe not the largest Venn diagram in the world), and is probably the strangest promotional tie-in in video game history.
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7 of 11 people found the following review helpful By E. A Solinas HALL OF FAMETOP 100 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on November 17, 2006
Format: Paperback
"Midway life's journey I was made aware/that I had strayed into a dark forest..." Those eerie words open the first cantica of Dante Alighieri's "Inferno," the most famous part of the legendary Divina Comedia. But the stuff going on here is anything but divine, as Dante explores the metaphorical and supernatural horrors of the inferno.

The date is Good Friday of the year 1300, and Dante is lost in a creepy dark forest, being assaulted by a trio of beasts who symbolize his own sins. But suddenly he is rescued ("Not man; man I once was") by the legendary poet Virgil, who takes the despondent Dante under his wing -- and down into Hell.

But this isn't a straightforward hell of flames and dancing devils. Instead, it's a multi-tiered carnival of horrors, where different sins are punished with different means. Opportunists are forever stung by insects, the lustful are trapped in a storm, the greedy are forced to battle against each other, and the violent lie in a river of boiling blood, are transformed into thorn bushes, and are trapped on a volcanic desert.

If nothing else makes you feel like being good, then "The Inferno" might change your mind. The author loads up his "Inferno" with every kind of disgusting, grotesque punishment that you can imagine -- and it's all wrapped up in an allegorical journey of humankind's redemption, not to mention dissing the politics of Italy and Florence.

Along with Virgil -- author of the "Aeneid" -- Dante peppered his Inferno with Greek myth and symbolism. Like the Greek underworld, different punishments await different sins; what's more, there are also appearances by harpies, centaurs, Cerberus and the god Pluto. But the sinners are mostly Dante's contemporaries, from corrupt popes to soldiers.
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