Inferno is the first cantica of the famed allegorical epic poem the Divine Comedy, which was written by one of the most influential Italian poets—Dante Alighieri. The poem consists of three parts: Inferno (Hell), Purgatorio (Purgatory), and Paradiso (Paradise), and it is considered to be the most significant narrative poem of Italian medieval and early Renaissance literature.
In the Divine Comedy, Dante, both as a pilgrim and as a poet, embarks on an adventurous spiritual and emotional journey to redeem his soul and reconnect with God. The Roman poet Virgil, whom Dante greatly respects and admires, guides him through the nine circles of hell (Limbo, Lust, Gluttony, Greed, Wrath, Heresy, Violence, Fraud, and Treason) and the seven circles of Purgatory (Pride, Envy, Wrath, Sloth, Avarice, Gluttony, and Lust); his beloved Beatrice Portinari guides him through the nine spheres of Paradise (Sphere of the Moon, Mercury, Venus, the Sun, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, the Fixed Stars, and the Primum Mobile).
Even though Paradiso is the culminating point of Dante's journey and the final part of the Divine Comedy, Inferno is undoubtedly the most popular part of the trilogy, and it has had tremendous impact on all forms of art and entertainment and has influenced and continues to influence numerous writers and artists to this very day.