Essay by bluebreakCollege, Undergraduate February 2005

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Dante, Italian writer of poetry, wrote three books of divine comedy. One of the books is about hell, one about purgatory, and the last of them is about heaven. The idea that follows in all of Dante's books, is the theme of different levels. In hell there are separate levels that Dante and his guide Virgil go through. For instance, the first level of hell is for people who were good on earth, but were not baptized Christians. Their only punishment is that they are separated from God's eternal glory. The first level of hell is made mostly up of poets. It is interesting that Dante comes up with this particular pattern of punishment for sin. If you were not a Christian, but didn't sin very much, then you are not punished very much. However, if you were a horrible person, then you would be put in a lower level of hell.

The worse person you were on earth, the hotter the pot would be when you jumped in. In the book of purgatory, the levels don't punish you for sin, but rather make you work off the sins you did on earth. If you are in purgatory, then you are guaranteed to go to heaven, but the more sins you committed, the longer it will be before you get there, and the lower the level you have to start out on. Hell is a giant pit, and purgatory is the mountain that was made from the dirt that was piled up out of it. The mountain of purgatory leads to heaven, suspended around each planet. There are no levels in heaven, but rather different heavens, one for each of the planets. Dante continuously tells how each level is for each sin, and in all the books,