The importance of the quest in Homer's Odyssey and Dante's The Inferno
... naked spirits many a flock I saw, All weeping piteously, to different laws ed; for on earth some lay supine, Some crouching close were seated, others placed
Incessantly around; the latter tribe
More numerous, those fewer who beneath
The torment lay, but louder in their grief"
(Translated by H.F Cary, Dante, "The Inferno", Canto XIV, lines 18-24)
The Divine Comedy, written by Dante Alighieri between 1308 and 1321, comprises the three canticas, the first of which is the "inferno" or the Hell. The journey starts from the middle and hence is an ideal media res structure, when Virgil guides the poet, hardened in sin. A Pilgrim's Progress begins with a Bunyanesque Christian sensibilit...