Dante's Inferno Canto 17 Questions and Answers

Dante Alighieri

Canto 17 Questions and Answers

Study Questions
1. Why does Virgil tell Dante to talk with those in the Circles of Fraud?

2. Describe the sounds that Dante hears while riding the creature from the depths.

3. What part of the Geryon does Dante consider dangerous?

4. To what animal does Dante compare the Usurers?

5. What do the Usurers wear about their throats?

6. What is on the purses of the Usurers?

7. What are the faces of the Usurers like? Why are they like that?

8. How do Dante and Virgil get to the next circle?

9. How does Dante feel on the trip to the next circle?

10. Who was Icarus? How does Dante’s fear compare with Icarus’s fear?

Answers
1. Virgil wants Dante to learn all he can about this ring.

2. Dante hears the noise of the cataracts to the right and the wails from the pit.

3. The Geryon’s tail is a venomed fork.

4. Dante compares the Usurers to dogs.

5. The Usurers wear purses about their throats.

6. The coats of arms of their families are on the Usurers’ purses.

7. The faces of the Usurers are burned and scarred. The hot ground has burned their faces because they spurned making a living by Nature (or the arts) and concentrated on money lending.

8. Dante and Virgil get to the next circle on the back of the Geryon.

9. Dante is very frightened on the trip to the next circle.

10. Icarus flew with wings made of wax and feathers; he flew too near the sun and the wax melted. Dante’s fear as he approaches the pit is equal to Icarus’s as he approached the earth in his fall.