on 15 June 2011
This epic poem is unlike anything else. Fascinating read, it encorporates everything it is to be human: the struggle, determination, love, fear the list goes on. I primarily selected this poem for my Italian and English exams at A level, although when I finished the book I realised I should have read it ages ago! Over the summer I'll definitely read the other two parts to the Divine Commedy, although this poem stands alone in my opnion. The english translation on opposite sides of the page to the original italian is very helpful and obviously a necessity if you can't speak old italian. I would highly reccomend reading the commentary after every Canto as this helps to understand the meaning behind the metaphors. Great read, definitely reccomend it to everyone!
on 8 September 2002
From the trilogy 'The Divine Commedy', this is undoubtedly my personal favourite. After the drama and power of the Inferno, and before the ethereal, dogmatic Paradiso comes this wonderful transition. Dante celebrates the human spirit, with its faults but mostly its hope, and human fraternity.
The subject is treated with gentleness and tenderness, despite the fact that the souls there are being punished. I found in it the most moving moment of the whole Comedy, when Virgil leaves Dante. It is then, in the last few canti, that Dante meets Beatrice and must turn his focus to more heavenly matters.
John D. Sinclair recognises this human poignancy throughout and since Sinclair treats the whole Comedy as personal to Dante, and his life, in his commentary, this edition is particularly suitable for an appreciation of Dante's ideas in the Purgatorio - 'the reordering of love'.