At the age of thirty-five, the night of Good Friday 1300, Dante is lost in a dark forest and very frightened by it. He sees the sun-drenched mountains and tries to climb them, but the leopard, the lion and the wolf prevent it. Dante is forced to return to the forest. There he meets the spirit of Virgil, who promises to lead him through hell and purgatory to Paradise. Dante agrees and follows Virgil through the gates of Hell.
Directly behind the entrance are the souls who during their lifetime did not do good or evil. Then you can see the river Acheron through which the ferocious Charon carries the dead on a boat to the first circle of hell.
This is Limb. Here the souls of warriors, sages, poets languish. as well as unbaptized infants. They mourn that they have no place in Paradise. Dante and Virgil went and talked about the unearthly together with the great poets of antiquity, the first of which was Homer.
At the descent into the second circle of hell, the demon
Minos determines which sinner to cast down. The travelers saw the swept souls of the sensualists swept away by the whirlwind (Cleopatra, Elena the Fair, etc.) The tragic death of them led to mutual passion..
In the circle of third travelers met the dog Cerberus. Here, under a downpour, lie in the mud, the souls gluttonous. Among them, Dante’s countryman, Florentine Chakko. They talked about their hometown and Chakko asked Dante to remind him of him alive after returning to earth.
In the fourth round they execute wasteful people and miser. He is guarded by the demon Plutus.
In the fifth round, angry and lazy are tormented. They are mired in the swamps of the Stygian lowland.
Then the travelers came to a tower. Around her is a vast pond through which the rower fights, the demon Flegius.
Before Dante and Virgil stretched hell city Diet. All dead evil spirits prevent them from entering. The heavenly messenger suddenly appeared at the entrance to the city, curbing their malice. In Dita, the travelers saw the tombs enveloped in flame, from which the groans of heretics are heard.
the descent from the sixth circle in the seventh Virgil explained to Dante the arrangement of the remaining three circles tapering to the center of the earth.
The seventh circle lies between the mountains and is guarded by the Minotaur. There, the travelers saw a bloody boiling stream, in which tyrants and robbers were cooked. From the shore, the centaurs shoot at them from bows. Centaur Ness volunteered to conduct travelers and helped to find a ford across the river.
There were prickly thickets all around. These are the souls of suicides. They are pecked in infernal birds of Harpy, trampled dead and this causes them unbearable pain. The souls of new sinners move towards them. Among them, Dante recognized his teacher Brunetto Latini. He is guilty of a propensity for same-sex love. Three more sinners dance for a similar sin in the fire.
Then there was a deep dip in the eighth circle. There goes the hellish beast Gerion.
The eighth circle consists of ten ditches, called Zlopazuhi.
In the first, pimps and women seducers are executed, and flatterers in the second. The demons are beaten by demons, and the flatterers sit in a mass of feces
The next ditch is laid with a stone with round holes. Out of them are the burning feet of clerics who traded in church positions. Their heads and torsos are clamped with stones.
In the fourth sinus, the soothsayers and the sorcerer, who are twisted by the neck, are executed.
The fifth – filled with boiling tar, which throws bribes. Then the travelers see the crucified high priest insisting on the execution of Christ.
In the seventh bosom the path goes through the rocks. Here they execute thieves – they are bitten by poisonous snakes and they crumble to dust, then recover in their guise.
And in the eighth bosom executed insidious advisers.
In the ninth – the sowers of the Troubles are executed. The devil cuts their noses and ears, crushes the skulls. The travelers came to the well through which Antaeus lowered them on his huge palm to the bottom. They were near the center of the globe.
Before them stretched an ice lake, in which the traitors of their relatives were frozen.
In the center is the frozen ruler of Hell Lucifer, he is a three-faced man. From the first of his jaws sticks out Judas, from the second Brutus, from the third Cassius. Lucifer tears at their claws. From it stretches a well to the opposite terrestrial hemisphere, squeezed into which the travelers ascended to the surface and saw the sky.
They were in purgatory. We washed ourselves at the shore of the sea, washed away the soot of abandoned hell.
From the sea distance they were approached by a canoe driven by an angel with the souls of the deceased, who did not go to hell. On the canoe the travelers reached the shore and went to the foot of Mount Purgatory.
There the travelers communicated with the sinners, who had time to sincerely repent before they died, and for this reason they did not enter Hell.
Dante lay down on the grass, fell asleep and was transferred to the gates of Purgatory in a dream. Guarded by the gates of the angel, he inscribed the letter “G” – “sin” 7 times on his forehead. These seven letters will be erased as you climb the mountain.
In the first round of Purgatory sinners are atoned for their sin. They are bent under the weight of stone blocks as a punishment for sin.
In the second round – envious. They are blinded, their eyes can not see anything.
In the third circle, those possessed with anger are cleansed. There was black haze, humbling their fury.
In the fourth circle the lazy ones are cleared. They are here to run fast.
In the circle of the fifth – miser and wasteful. There was an earthquake caused by glee because one of the souls was cleansed and ready for ascension: it is the Roman poet Stacius
In the sixth circle, the gluttons are cleansed. They are condemned to starving.
From the forehead of the travelers, the penultimate letter is erased and the path to the seventh circle of Purgatory is opened to them.
In the seventh circle, the sensualists are cleansed. They burn in the fire and sing, glorifying abstinence and chastity.
Now travelers must walk through the wall of fire and there is no other way to Paradise.
And here is Paradise Earth. It is located in a blossoming grove. Beautiful donna collects flowers and sings. She told Dante that there was a golden age, but then, among the paradise, the happiness of the first people was ruined by sin.
According to Paradise, righteous elders are marching in snow-white clothes, wreaths of roses and lilies on their heads, wonderful beauties are dancing everywhere. Suddenly Dante saw his beloved – Beatrice and lost his senses. He woke up immersed in oblivion – the river of oblivion of sins.
Further, Dante went to the river Evno, the water from which strengthens the memory of the perfect good, and washed with it in Stacy. Now Dante was clean and worthy to climb the stars.
From Earthly Paradise Dante and Beatrice both flew to Heaven
In the first heaven of Heaven – in the sky of the Moon, they met the souls of nuns who were forcibly married. Beatrice explained that although they were victims, they should bear a certain responsibility for what was done against the violence, because they did not show heroic perseverance.
Then they flew to the second heaven of Paradise – to Mercury, to the souls of ambitious righteous ones who shine and radiate.
In the third heaven, Venus, the souls of lovers are blissful. They shine in the stars.
The fourth star, the Sun, is the abode of the wise. Further – on Mars and white Jupiter, where the souls of the fair are hovering. Their lights turn into letters, and then into the figure of the eagle, a symbol of the righteous imperial authority approved in heaven.
Eagle entered into a conversation with Dante. He embodies the idea of justice, he has a visionary eye made up of the most worthy light-spirits.
Travelers ascended to the seventh heaven – to Saturn. This is the abode of contemplatives. From the height of Dante looked down, and saw a ridiculously small earth ball.
In the eighth heaven, thousands of fires burn – these are the triumphant spirits of the great righteous. Beatrice asked the apostles to talk with Dante. With the Apostle Peter they talked about the essence of faith. With the Apostle John – about love, faith, hope. At the eighth sky, Dante saw the radiant soul of Adam. Then the ninth heaven, supreme and crystal.
The first thing Dante saw in the sphere of the ninth heaven is a dazzling point. This is the symbol of the deity. Round it revolve lights – nine concentric angelic circles – seraphim and cherubim, and the most remote and extensive – the archangels and angels.
Angels, as Beatrice said, are the same age as the universe. Their rapid rotation is the source of all movement in the universe.
Further – ascension to Empires – the highest region of the universe. There he saw an old man in white who pointed upward, where Beatrice was shining. This elder – Bernard, henceforth – the instructor of Dante, with him together they began to behold the rose of Empyrea in which the souls of immaculate babies shine. Bernard prayed to the Virgin Mary, helped Dante. Then he gave him a sign, look up. Looking at the brightest light Dante gained the highest truth. He contemplated the deity in his trinity.