Forgot your password?  

Resources for students & teachers

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 443 pages of information about Divine Comedy, Cary's Translation, Complete.
That Penestrino cumber earth no more. 
Heav’n, as thou knowest, I have power to shut
And open:  and the keys are therefore twain,
The which my predecessor meanly priz’d.” 
     Then, yielding to the forceful arguments,
Of silence as more perilous I deem’d,
And answer’d:  “Father! since thou washest me
Clear of that guilt wherein I now must fall,
Large promise with performance scant, be sure,
Shall make thee triumph in thy lofty seat.” 
     “When I was number’d with the dead, then came
Saint Francis for me; but a cherub dark
He met, who cried:  “’Wrong me not; he is mine,
And must below to join the wretched crew,
For the deceitful counsel which he gave. 
E’er since I watch’d him, hov’ring at his hair,
No power can the impenitent absolve;
Nor to repent and will at once consist,
By contradiction absolute forbid.” 
Oh mis’ry! how I shook myself, when he
Seiz’d me, and cried, “Thou haply thought’st me not
A disputant in logic so exact.” 
To Minos down he bore me, and the judge
Twin’d eight times round his callous back the tail,
Which biting with excess of rage, he spake: 
“This is a guilty soul, that in the fire
Must vanish.’  Hence perdition-doom’d I rove
A prey to rankling sorrow in this garb.” 
     When he had thus fulfill’d his words, the flame
In dolour parted, beating to and fro,
And writhing its sharp horn.  We onward went,
I and my leader, up along the rock,
Far as another arch, that overhangs
The foss, wherein the penalty is paid
Of those, who load them with committed sin.

CANTO XXVIII

Who, e’en in words unfetter’d, might at full
Tell of the wounds and blood that now I saw,
Though he repeated oft the tale?  No tongue
So vast a theme could equal, speech and thought
Both impotent alike.  If in one band
Collected, stood the people all, who e’er
Pour’d on Apulia’s happy soil their blood,
Slain by the Trojans, and in that long war
When of the rings the measur’d booty made
A pile so high, as Rome’s historian writes
Who errs not, with the multitude, that felt
The grinding force of Guiscard’s Norman steel,
And those the rest, whose bones are gather’d yet
At Ceperano, there where treachery
Branded th’ Apulian name, or where beyond
Thy walls, O Tagliacozzo, without arms
The old Alardo conquer’d; and his limbs
One were to show transpierc’d, another his
Clean lopt away; a spectacle like this
Were but a thing of nought, to the’ hideous sight
Of the ninth chasm.  A rundlet, that hath lost
Its middle or side stave, gapes not so wide,
As one I mark’d, torn from the chin throughout
Down to the hinder passage:  ’twixt the legs
Dangling his entrails hung, the midriff lay
Open to view, and wretched ventricle,
That turns th’ englutted aliment to dross. 

Follow Us on Facebook