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Divine Comedy

        Dante’s Divine Comedy, particularly the first part, Inferno1, depicted hell and Satan in a way that had an enormous influence on Christianity. Many at the time took Dante’s work as truth although it is non-canon2. The Hell mentioned in the Bible depicts a place of damnation and separation from God. Dante, however, provided vivid including specific punishments for specific sins. Inferno’s description of hell has had enormous influence on the popular conception of it today – hell is often described as a place where the wicked are justly punished3

Source: Dore, Gustave. The Vision of Hell, Part 7. N.d. Photograph. n.p. Web. 15 Aug 2013. <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Gustave_Dore_Inferno_Canto_21.jpg>.

        This contrasts with the view many Christian theologians view that hell is merely the separation from God and is only bad because all good things are gifts from God. Dante’s Inferno also portrays Satan residing in the center of hell in the midst of all the suffering, punishment, and damnation, further solidifying popular culture’s belief of his residence in hell despite the Bible saying otherwise. 

    1 Dante Alighieri. The Divine Comedy, translated by Henry F. Cary. Vol. XX. The Harvard Classics. New York: P.F. Collier & Son, 1909–14; Bartleby.com, 2001.

    Wray, T. J., & Mobley, G. (2005). Birth of Satan: Tracing the devil's biblical roots. Gordonsville, VA. USA: Palgrave Macmillan.

    3 Ibid.