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Below is the table of contents from Boccaccio's lectura : And the present canto is divided into seven parts. In the first he [the author] describes the place where they arrived and stopped and what they found there. In the second the author describes the whole ordered arrangement of the Inferno and the kinds of sinners they will encounter.

In the fourth Virgil uncovers the cause for that and resolves the question. The main character of this canto is Capaneus , one of the most significant examples of the nature of hell's punishment: Hell is internal suffering. In the second part of the canto Virgil tells Dante the myth of the Old Man of Crete , a grotesque statue, whose streaming eyes form the rivers of Hell, Acheron, Phlegethon, Styx, and Cocytus.

Canto XV -- Seventh circle, third ring. Second zone: Violent Against Nature.

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This canto centers on the figure of Brunetto Latini. These souls are endlessly running throughout the fiery sands beneath the rain of fire. Dante sees him as a father figure. Canto XVI -- Still in the third ring of the seventh circle. Theme: Decadence of the city of Florence.

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The canto ends with the river Phlegethon cascading into the next zone. Virgil summons a monstrous figure and uses Dante belt as a bait to entice it to come.

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The canto ends with the descent into the eight circle. This place is reserved to the sin of fraud. This canto deals with the first two ditches: 1 the Seducers , who are scourged by horned demons. Among the characters Dante sees here are Venedico Caccianemico a contemporary and Jason from mythology. The second ditch is reserved to the Flatterers , who are immersed in excrements. Here Dante sees Alessio Interminei a contemporary and Thais from mythology. Canto XIX -- Third ditch of the eight circle.

This section is reserved to the Simonists , that is, those who bought and sold sacred objects and positions.

These sinners are set heads down into holes in the rock, with their feet coming out of the hole tormented by flames. Theme of the canto: Corruption of the Church.

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Canto XX -- Fourth ditch of the eight circle. Diviners, Astrologers and Magicians. These souls have their heads turned backward. It is the law of retribution applied to them: now they can only see backward while in their lives they believed to see ahead in the future.

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Among the characters: Amphiaraus, Tiresias, Aruns and Manto , whose presence leads Virgil to explains the origin of Mantua, his native city. Among the contemporaries, Michael Scot.

Dante's Inferno - Canto 3 Summary & Analysis

The Barrators. These sinners are plunged into boiling pitch and guarded by winged demons armed with pitchforks and prongs. In canto XXI, a new magistrate has just arrived from the city of Lucca. Ten demons are in charge over these sinners; they are led by Malacoda evil-tail ; who is the chief of the Malebranche evil claws. The episode continues in canto XXII, with Ciampolo of Navarre , in a devilish contest, succeeds in outsmarting the winged demons.

Dante and Virgil are abused by the devils, who like the sinners in this section, are untrustworthy.

9 Circles of Hell (Dante's Inferno)

Then they chase the two poets. Virgil helps Dante by pushing him down the Sixth Ditch , where the Hypocrites walk slowly in a long file, clothed in caps of led. Caiaphas is stretched down in the figure of a cross with the others walking over him. One of them, Vanni Fucci is bitten by a serpent, turns into ashes, and then is restored.

Other characters in canto XXV include the centaur Cacus and Five Florentines , three of them human, two of them serpents. The episode end with the astounding metamorphoses undergone by four of them. Themes: Impotence of the damned souls, and disintegration of the human shape interchange with snakes. In the Fourth Pouch are the Astrologists or Diviners, forced to walk with their heads on backward, a sight that moves Dante to great pity.

In the Fifth Pouch, the Barrators those who accepted bribes steep in pitch while demons tear them apart. The Hypocrites in the Sixth Pouch must forever walk in circles, wearing heavy robes made of lead. In the horrifying Seventh Pouch, the Thieves sit trapped in a pit of vipers, becoming vipers themselves when bitten; to regain their form, they must bite another thief in turn. In the Ninth Pouch, the souls of Sowers of Scandal and Schism walk in a circle, constantly afflicted by wounds that open and close repeatedly.

In the Tenth Pouch, the Falsifiers suffer from horrible plagues and diseases. The giant Antaeus picks Virgil and Dante up and sets them down at the bottom of the well, in the lowest region of Hell. In Antenora, the Second Ring, those who betrayed their country and party stand frozen up to their heads; here Dante meets Count Ugolino, who spends eternity gnawing on the head of the man who imprisoned him in life.

In Ptolomea, the Third Ring, those who betrayed their guests spend eternity lying on their backs in the frozen lake, their tears making blocks of ice over their eyes. Here, those who betrayed their benefactors spend eternity in complete icy submersion. A huge, mist-shrouded form lurks ahead, and Dante approaches it. It is the three-headed giant Lucifer, plunged waist-deep into the ice. His body pierces the center of the Earth, where he fell when God hurled him down from Heaven.

Eventually, the poets reach the Lethe, the river of forgetfulness, and travel from there out of Hell and back onto Earth. They emerge from Hell on Easter morning, just before sunrise. Home Poetry Inferno Plot Overview.