In the intensity of his imagination and the expressive force of his language, Italy's great medieval poet is the equal of England's great Renaissance poet. His ability to combine the two has resulted in a literary work with global and eternal appeal. Comedy is as vital today as it has always been. We need laughter and tears at the same time to cope with life's difficulties.
Dante's influence on European culture was enormous. He showed that poetry could be used to express religious beliefs, provide moral guidance, and explore various topics from theology to politics. His Divine Comedy is one of the most important books in world literature.
Dante's power lies not only in his originality but also in his mastery of his art. He is the first poet who can claim to have created a whole new genre - the comic poem. He uses his skills as an author to create a vivid picture of hell as well as of heaven. His descriptions are so real that they still inspire artists today.
The fact that Dante died while working on a final revision to his masterpiece shows how important he considered it to be. It is fitting then that his tomb is covered by a mural called Paradiso, which is painted by Michelangelo. This is probably why people continue to be interested in him more than 500 years after his death.
He is well known for the epic poem La Commedia, which was eventually renamed La Divina Commedia (The Divine Comedy). Dante's Divine Comedy, a milestone in Italian literature and one of the greatest masterpieces of medieval European literature, is a deep Christian picture of humanity's temporal and eternal fate. The poem consists of three parts, or canticles, describing the journey to heaven of an author who has died tragically. It offers a vivid vision of hell and purgatory along with a powerful critique of political corruption.
Dante was born into a wealthy family that had ties to the Roman Empire. He spent his childhood between Florence, where his father held government offices, and Ravenna, where he spent most of his time with his grandparents. His parents' marriage was unhappy, and when he was only nine years old his father was killed in a war against Florentine rivals. This tragic event apparently caused such an impact on Dante that he decided to become a poet.
In 1265 he traveled to Paris, where he probably met other famous poets of his time, including John Bunyan (1628-1688), Henry Vaughan (1572-1647), and George Herbert (1593-1633). It is also possible that he visited London, where there were many universities where he could have received education.
After returning home from France, where he may have worked as a diplomat's clerk, Dante started writing poetry himself.
Dante, full name Dante Alighieri, was an Italian poet, prose writer, literary theorist, moral philosopher, and political thinker who was born around May 21-June 20, 1265 in Florence [Italy] and died September 13/14, 1321 in Ravenna. The poem describes a journey through Hell, Purgatory, and Heaven, and was intended to help its reader understand the nature of sin and salvation. It contains three parts, called cantos, that deal with different themes: canto 1 deals with earthly pleasures; canto 2 explores the effects of evil on both the individual and society; while canto 3 focuses on the joys of heaven.
Before becoming a poet, musician, and artist, Dante was trained as a lawyer and served in the government of Florence during the 1280s and 1290s. He traveled abroad several times and had encounters with famous poets and thinkers of his time, including John XXII, Boniface VIII, and Peter Abelard. Upon his return home in 1302, he wrote La Commedia, which took him about three years to complete. It was not published until 1481, after his death.
Dante's work influenced many other artists and writers, most notably English poet John Milton. Dante's influence can be seen in many modern languages, including Italian, French, Spanish, and Latin.
Dante's Life Story (c. 1265-c. 1321) Dante was a Medieval Italian poet and philosopher whose epic trilogy "The Divine Comedy" left an everlasting mark on literature and theology. He was born in Italy about twelve years after the death of Abelard, a famous French philosopher and teacher. The year of his birth is estimated to be between 1261 and 1266. His father died when he was young, and he was raised by his mother along with her other children from a previous marriage. She worked as a court official which meant that she had to move around a lot. When he was still a teenager, he joined the government service himself. He became one of the most powerful men at the city council of Florence, but was expelled for corruption. After being forced to leave Florence, he went back home to find it destroyed. All his friends and relatives were dead. Frightened and despairing, he took refuge in a mountain cave where he imagined many of the scenes from the Divine Comedy.
Dante married in his early twenties and had a son who lived only three months. Due to this tragedy, he decided to retire from public life and spend the rest of his days praying and reading religious texts. He was in prison for fraud when he died at the age of forty-one.
Dante greatly altered the trajectory of literary evolution by writing his poem in Italian vernacular rather than Latin. (He spoke mostly in the Tuscan dialect, which became standard literary Italian, although his vibrant vocabulary covered a wide variety of dialects and languages.) Although Latin was the official language of theology and government at the time, it was the common man that needed something more accessible so that he could understand the messages of salvation without risking eternal damnation.
Dante's decision to write in Italian rather than Latin is often cited as one of the reasons why modern readers find his work so appealing and memorable. The fact that we can understand the text completely without knowing any Latin makes it easy for us to read and enjoy.
Besides being a great poet in its own right, the Divine Comedy serves as a seminal work in European literature because it shows how much a person can know about life and death through imagination and poetry.