Situated in the center of the Western Canon of Literature, Dante Alighieri is the best illustration of the fundamental principle stated by Saint John Henry Newman:
A great author, Gentlemen, is not one who merely has a ‘copia verborum,’ whether in prose or verse, and can, as it were, turn on at his will any number of splendid phrases and swelling sentences; but he is one who has something to say and knows how to say it.John Henry Newman, http://www.newmanreader.org/works/idea/article2.html
Indeed, that is precisely why Dante is one of the greatest authors who ever existed in the whole history of literature. He has an extraordinarily important message and knows how to say it.
What is his message? The essential teaching of Judeo-Christian Tradition (as well as of many ancient religions): the world is not just the visible one but the unseen one, too. And this “invisible” – i.e. spiritual and eternal – dimension of our world is the most important one. That will be our eternal abode after any of us will leave this terrestrial live behind. In that world everyone will receive his rewards: the good will go to Paradise, the bad will be thrown into Hell. To understand how important is this basic tenet of our Christian Faith any reader can use Dante’s Divina Commedia as a meditation to the perennial destiny of our souls. Besides that, everything valuable in Thomistic philosophy and theology is carefully enciphered in this magnificent epic poem.
Any cultivated soul must read Divina Commedia not just once, but as many times it is necessary for a deep immersion into all the nuances of this immortal piece of literary art.
- Author: Dante Alighieri (1265-1321)
- Original title: Divina Commedia
- Original language: Italian
- Genre: Epic poem
- The period of creation: 1308-1320
- Publication year: 1472
- Public: Adults, teenagers
|The Divine Comedy|