The Paradiso – Dante Alighieri (La Divina Commedia #3)

Paradiso is the third and final part of The Divine Comedy by Dante Alighieri which describes Dante’s version of Paradise. Dante’s Paradise is influenced by medieval views on Cosmology. Accordingly, it has nine concentric spheres that surround the earth. Above the spheres is the Empyrean which is where God resides.

In Paradiso, Dante journeys through Paradise. Here his guide is Beatrice. Virgil is no longer there and I missed dear old Virgil who guided Dante through the Inferno and Purgatorio. Unlike in the Inferno and Purgatorio where more classical and literary influences could be seen, Paradiso is based on Christian theology, astronomy, and classical philosophy. It is said that allegorically Beatrice represents theology. So it is all but natural that Beatrice is his guide here and that Virgil has no role to play.

The beautiful metaphors, the detailed descriptions, and lyrical beauty of the verses that I loved in both the Inferno and Purgatorio are found here as well. I enjoyed reading them. However, when compared with the other two, Paradiso was a heavy read for me. At times, especially in the middle, I found the read a little exhausting. But towards the last third cantos, the contents were lighter and I was able to get into a comfortable pace of reading.

Now that I have read all three parts, I can honestly conclude that my favourite out of them all is Inferno. I find Inferno to be more creative and imaginative than the other two. Nevertheless, I enjoyed them all. With this read, I have completed my read of The Divine Comedy. I cannot say that I understood the entirety of it, but for me, poetry is more to feel than to understand.

Rating: 4/5

About the author

Piyangie Jay Ediriwickrema is an Attorney-at-Law by profession. Her devotion to literature has taken shape in reading and reviewing books of various genres set in different periods of time. She dabs at a little poetry and fiction of her own and hopes to share her work with the readers in the future.

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