It may seem a tad unfair to confine gluttons to hell, as Dante does. But one must bear in mind that gluttony was one of the seven deadly sins and as such was a very serious matter indeed during the Middle Ages. Food was considered a gift from God for our sustenance. Gluttony, however, was an abuse of that gift—a gross perversion of his divine love. Hence the appearance of gluttons in the third circle of hell, sloshing about in the muddy mire, beaten down by the rain.
Dante's view of punishment is pretty straightforward, as Virgil explains:
What these shades could not satisfy in life, in death, they shall be denied for eternity.
As gluttons enjoyed such a nice, warm feeling of comfort from their excessive eating in life, so they will be deprived of any warmth or comfort in hell. They will spend the rest of eternity mired in filth, assailed by a constant deluge of snow and freezing rain. No longer will they sample the finest food and drink life has to offer; instead, they are forced to...
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