A brilliant new translation of the centerpiece of "The Divine Comedy"
Purgatory, the mountain that straightens souls made crooked by the world, is Dante's single most conceptually brilliant creation. Anthony Esolen's vivid and innovative new rendering unearths Dante's own voice with unprecedented vigor, accuracy, and a masterly use of English meter. It will set the standard for years to come.
Esolen's Introduction incisively explores Dante's theological universe: the nature of "Purgatory," how Dante came to invent it, and how Purgatory is finally about restoration, liberation, and friendship. Special features, from an appendix that reproduces key sources to extensive explanatory notes, make this a particularly illuminating edition for both expert and newcomer.
About the Author
Dante Alighieri was born in 1265 in Florence to a family of minor nobility. He entered into Florentine politics in 1295, but he and his party were forced into exile in a hostile political climate in 1301. Taking asylum in Ravenna late in life, Dante completed his Divine Commedia, considered one of the most important works of Western literature, before his death in 1321.
Professor Anthony Esolen holds a Doctorate in Renaissance English Literature from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He is a Professor of English at Providence College, located in Providence, Rhode Island. He is the translator of the celebrated three-volume Modern Library edition of Dante's Divine Comedy (Random House). He is a Senior Editor for Touchstone: A Journal of Mere Christianity, and his articles appear regularly in First Things, Catholic World Report, Magnificat, This Rock, and Latin Mass.
Praise for Anthony Esolen’s translation of Inferno
“The sheer intelligence and verve Esolen brings to the task makes him a contender against all comers. . . . If there is any justice in the world of books, [his] will be the standard Dante in the classroom and the home library for some time to come.” —Robert Royal, Crisis
“Anthony Esolen’s new translation follows Dante through all his spectacular range, commanding where he is commanding, wrestling, as he does, with the density and darkness in language and in the soul. It is living writing.” —James Richardson, Princeton University
“Professor Esolen’s translation of Dante’s Inferno is the best one I have seen. . . . And his endnotes and other additions provoke answers to almost any question that could arise about the work.” —A. Kent Hieatt, translator of The Canterbury Tales