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ENDURING LITERATURE ILLUMINATED BY PRACTICAL SCHOLARSHIP The first volume of The Divine Comedy--Dante begins his downward journey through the seven circles of Hell. EACH ENRICHED CLASSIC EDITION INCLUDES: A concise introduction that gives readers important background information A chronology of the author's life and work A timeline of significant events that provides the book's historical context An outline of key themes and plot points to help readers form their own interpretations Detailed explanatory notes Critical analysis, including contemporary and modern perspectives on the work Discussion questions to promote lively classroom and book group interaction A list of recommended related books and films to broaden the reader's experience Enriched Classics offer readers affordable editions of great works of literature enhanced by helpful notes and insightful commentary. The scholarship provided in Enriched Classics enables readers to appreciate, understand, and enjoy the world's finest books to their full potential. SERIES EDITED BY CYNTHIA BRANTLEY JOHNSON
Begun about 1307 and completed in 1321, Dante's sublime poetic masterpiece, The Divine Comedy, is one of the world's great works of literature. It comprises an extraordinarily vivid and imaginative account of the poet's allegorical journey through the afterlife. Complementing its depiction of the world beyond, the poem's abundant allusions to earthly history and politics, vivid portrayals of Dante's friends and enemies, and many references to contemporary Italian affairs make it an intensely human, realistic portrait of life on earth. Led in his travels by the classical poet Virgil, Dante descends through the nine circles of Hell, where punishment is determined by the gravity of the sinner's transgressions. He then ascends the mountain of Purgatory, encountering souls atoning for their misdeeds, and, at the summit, is met at the entrance to Paradise by Beatrice, his beloved. Throughout his pilgrimage, he meets characters drawn from ancient Roman and medieval times (philosophers, heroes, emperors, popes, and politicians, among others) as well as numerous personalities from the Italy of his day. This dual-language edition includes the complete texts of 33 of the original 100 cantos or "songs"; each omitted canto is summarized in its proper place to provide continuity. The selection of cantos and the excellent line-for-line translations from Italian into English are by Stanley Appelbaum, who also has provided an informative Introduction and useful notes.
In this superb translation with an introduction and commentary by Allen Mandelbaum, all of Dante's vivid images--the earthly, sublime, intellectual, demonic, ecstatic--are rendered with marvelous clarity to read like the words of a poet born in our own age.and psychological discoveries make clear why this work persists at the heart of Western culture."If Dante's Inferno is a cautionary tale of the history of human depravity, it is also an amazingly complex narrative, treating timeless ethical themes, medieval philosophy and religion, tendentious political issues and deeply personal events."--San Diego Union-Tribune
An attractive new alternative as both a translation and a pedagogical tool. The volume includes an excellent introduction by Dante scholar Steven Botterill (Univ. of California, Berkeley), clear and informative notes by lifelong Dantist Anthony Oldcorn, a concise bibliographical note that indicates some important sources on Dante in print and online, and a diagram of Hell; Index of the Damned lists characters who appear in the canticle. The translator's preface explains Lombardo's choices as he faced the always-challenging task of rendering Dante's poetry into English. Among the most interesting choices are the occasional use of rhyme--especially in key passages and at the end of each canto, where interlocking rhymes that mimic Dante's terza rima are consistently employed--and an emphasis on creating a version that works well as an oral presentation, following the long tradition of private, public, and theatrical readings of the poem. The volume includes the original Italian text, thus facilitating classroom references and comparisons. --Rebecca West (Department of Romance Languages and Literatures, University of Chicago) in Choice
This celebration of the poet's passionate love for his immortal Beatrice weaves together rapturous sonnets and canzoni with prose commentaries and an autobiographical narrative. A predecessor to The Divine Comedy, La Vita Nuova (The New Life) also serves as an ever-relevant treatise on the art and technique of poetry.
"If there is any justice in the world of books, [Esolen's] will be the standard Dante . . . for some time to come."-Robert Royal, CrisisIn this, the concluding volume of The Divine Comedy, Dante ascends from the devastation of the Inferno and the trials of Purgatory. Led by his beloved Beatrice, he enters Paradise, to profess his faith, hope, and love before the Heavenly court. Completed shortly before his death, Paradise is the volume that perhaps best expresses Dante's spiritual philosophy about resurrection, redemption, and the nature of divinity. It also affords modern-day readers a clear window into late medieval perceptions about faith. A bilingual text, classic illustrations by Gustave Doré, an appendix that reproduces Dante's key sources, and other features make this the definitive edition of Dante's ultimate masterwork.From the Trade Paperback edition.
The Divine Comedy is a complete scale of the depths and heights of human emotion," wrote T.S. Eliot. "The last canto of the Paradiso is to my thinking the highest point that poetry has ever reached or ever can reach."The Divine Comedy stands as one of the towering creations of world literature, and its climactic section, the Paradiso, is perhaps the most ambitious poetic attempt ever made to represent the merging of individual destiny with universal order. Having passed through Hell and Purgatory, Dante is led by his beloved Beatrice to the upper sphere of Paradise, wherein lie the sublime truths of Divine will and eternal salvation, to at last experience a rapturous vision of God."A spectacular achievement," said poet and critic Archibald MacLeish of John Ciardi's version of Dante's masterpiece. "A text with the clarity and sobriety of a first-rate prose translation which at the same time suggests in powerful and unmistakable ways the run and rhythm of the great original."From the Hardcover edition.
Now I shall sing the second kingdom,there where the soul of man is cleansed,made worthy to ascend to heaven. In the second book of Dante's epic poem The Divine Comedy, Dante has left hell and begins the ascent of the mount of purgatory. Just as hell had its circles, purgatory, situated at the threshold of heaven, has its terraces, each representing one of the seven mortal sins. With Virgil again as his guide, Dante climbs the mountain; the poet shows us, on its slopes, those whose lives were variously governed by pride, envy, wrath, sloth, avarice, gluttony, and lust. As he witnesses the penance required on each successive terrace, Dante often feels the smart of his own sins. His reward will be a walk through the garden of Eden, perhaps the most remarkable invention in the history of literature.Now Jean Hollander, an accomplished poet, and Robert Hollander, a renowned scholar and master teacher, whose joint translation of the Inferno was acclaimed as a new standard in English, bring their respective gifts to Purgatorio in an arresting and clear verse translation. Featuring the original Italian text opposite the translation, their edition offers an extensive and accessible introduction as well as generous historical and interpretive commentaries that draw on centuries of scholarship and Robert Hollander's own decades of teaching and reasearch.
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