Translated by Anthony Esolen
Illustrations by Gustave Dore
A groundbreaking bilingual edition of Dante's masterpiece that includes a substantive Introduction, extensive notes, and appendixes that reproduce Dante's key sources and influences.
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.
Paul Gustave Louis Christophe Dore (1832-1883) was a French artist, printmaker, illustrator and sculptor. Dore worked primarily with wood engraving, and that is in this field that he gained enormous worldwide popularity and renown, mainly for the plates he did for the "Divine Comedy" of Dante and for the "Fables of La Fontaine," which continue today to inspire countless illustrators, film directors and other artists.
“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
“Crisp and clear, Esolen’s version avoids two modern temptations: a slavish literalness to the Italian or a taking of liberties in the attempt to make this greatest of medieval poems esthetically modern. . . . In addition to his scholarly tact, Esolen is simply one of the most vigorous English translators of Dante ever.”—Crisis magazine
“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. This Inferno gives us Dante’s vivid drama and his verbal inventiveness. It is living writing.” —James Richardson, professor of creative writing in the Lewis Center for the Arts, Princeton University
“Opening the book we stand face to face with the poet, and when his voice ceases we may marvel if he has not sung to us in his own Tuscan."—William Dean Howells, The Nation