Dante's Inferno Questions and Answers
by Dante Alighieri

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In Dante's Inferno, what are the sins Dante himself committed?

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There is not an easy way to answer this question, as much would remain entirely speculative and perhaps reductive. Overall, Dante might claim that he is tempted by all of these sins and the poem (in part a dream vision in which he must journey toward salvation) is entirely about Dante and his own mind. Each of the sins in the Inferno may be a part of his moral weakness, and each are perfected on the journey through Purgatorio and Paradiso. Certainly other sins exist beyond the ones he itemizes.

At the same time, conventional understandings of the poem suggest that some sins are more immediately distressing for Dante, as indicated by how he responds to the contrapasso associated with them. In seeing their true nature in this contrapasso, he becomes more deeply affected, crying or fainting or in some other way responding to the image presented.

For instance, in Canto 5: The Lustful, Dante sees an image of unrooted passion or eros and hears of Franseca's story of reading leading to sin....

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