[FoRK] daily kos on delay

Joe Barrera joe at barrera.org
Tue Mar 22 18:31:37 PST 2005

BTW, it's the 8th circle, right? That DeLay is destined for? Malebolge?
But I'm not sure which "pouch".

It's been a while since I've read The Inferno,
so thank goodness for Google.

- Joe


Lesson Nine:

    * Cantos XVIII- XXXI - Circle Eight: Malebolge
    * Grammar  Lesson: Active and Passive Constructions

Unlike the other circles, this lovely piece of real estate has a name-- 
"Malebolge"-- variously translated as "evil pockets," "evil ditches," or 
"evil pouches."

    * In Pouch One demons spur and drive the Panderers and Seducers.

    * Pouch Two contains the Flatterers who are sunk up to their necks 
in excrement.

    * Pouch Three holds the Simoniacs (sellers of church favors). These 
sinners are positioned upside down in "bins" that resemble baptismal 
fonts. The soles of their feet are set ablaze. They stay in this 
position until new sinners arrive, then they drop down into the rock 
crevices for all eternity.

    * In Pouch Four Dante sees the Fortunetellers. These sinners have 
their heads on backwards and must walk "backwards" for all time. In 
life, they attempted to "see" the future, now in death they must see the 
past. It is here that Dante sees Tiresias, the soothsayer from the 
ancient Greek myths.

    * Pouch Five holds the Grafters. They are immersed in sticky tar 
pitch-- a perfect punishment for their lives of "sticky fingered" crime. 
These sinners are watched over by demons armed with murderous hooks and 
claws -- used to ensure that the sinners stay put in the pitch!

    * In Pouch Six Dante sees the Hypocrites who now wander through all 
eternity weighed down by heavy weighted robes -- robes which, on the 
outside appear golden and bright, but on the inside lack any sort of luster.

    * The Thieves are punished in Pouch Seven. The thieves are provided 
with a particularly complicated punishment. They are at first surrounded 
by monstrous snakes that coil around each sinner's hands, binding him 
fast. When thus immobilized, another reptile darts out to strike the 
sinner's throat, causing the sinner to explode into flame. But the 
punishment is not over yet -- from the flaming ashes, the sinner 
re-emerges to undergo the torment again and again.

    * The Evil Counselors are punished in Pouch Eight, hidden in great 
cups of flame that symbolize their guilty consciences. Here Dante sees 
Ulysses and Diomede, the instigators of the Trojan Horse ploy.

    * Pocket Nine holds the sowers of religious, political and family 
discord. In life thee people ripped apart peace and placidity; now in 
death they are ripped apart physically. Dante sees Mahomet, who, in 
Dante's view represents religious schism. Mahomet's torso is ripped by a 
sword slice. As he approaches, Dante observes that Mahomet is "mangled 
and split open." Dante then sees Bertrand de Born, a French 
troubadour/knight traditionally blamed for the rift between Henry II and 
his son. As he comes closer, Dante sees that de Born's head has been 
severed -- as he advances he holds his head before him like a lantern. 
This is surely one of the most horrifying scene in the whole poem!

    * In Pocket Ten Dante views the falsifiers -- alchemists, evil 
impersonators ( NOT Elvis impersonators!), counterfeiters, and false 
witnesses. These sinners, who in life, corrupted all, now are made to 
endure every sort of corruption and pain. Darkness, dirt, filth, 
disease, hunger, thirst and noise surround them. Dante and Virgil now 
move on past a vast horde of Giants who guard the "Central Pit" of 

More information about the FoRK mailing list