Wednesday, May 25, 2005

In the Ninth Circle of Hell

The Big Hominid has officially welcomed me to the ninth circle of his own personal underworld. For those intrepid enough to enter, proceed with caution into those Hairy Chasms.

In case anyone is unfamiliar with Dante, the ninth circle of hell is the lowest, and it's reserved for those damned sinners who committed the horrible sin of . . . treachery.

I don't think that I've stabbed anyone in the back lately, but let's check the four rings of this lowest of all hellish circles:

1. Caina: Traitors to Kin

2. Antenora: Traitors to Homeland

3. Ptolomea: Traitors to Guests

4. Giudecca: Traitors to Benefactors

Koreans would perhaps expect traitors to family as the lowest ring, but Dante has traitors to benefactors there. I've read but not studied Dante, so I don't know why he structures his hell in the way he does, but since Judas is placed even lower, being gnawed on by one of Satan's three mouths, then I'm guessing that the archetype of Judas as traitor to Christ has shaped Dante's thinking.

I don't know precisely where in hell to go, but hell wants me in its ninth circle. Normally, I wouldn't belong to any club that would have me as a member, but even woman hath no fury like a hell scorned, so I'd better accept.


Post a Comment

<< Home