The Divine Comedy (Barnes & Noble Collectible Editions)

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Overview

A landmark of world literature, The Divine Comedy tells of the poet Dante's travels through Hell, Purgatory, and Paradise in search of salvation. Before he is redeemed by his love for the heavenly Beatrice, he learns the meaning of evil, sin, damnation, and forgiveness through a series of unforgettable experiences and encounters. This edition of The Divine Comedy features Henry Wadsworth Longfellow's renowned and 135 full-page reproductions of Gustave Dore's classic engravings ...
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Overview

A landmark of world literature, The Divine Comedy tells of the poet Dante's travels through Hell, Purgatory, and Paradise in search of salvation. Before he is redeemed by his love for the heavenly Beatrice, he learns the meaning of evil, sin, damnation, and forgiveness through a series of unforgettable experiences and encounters. This edition of The Divine Comedy features Henry Wadsworth Longfellow's renowned and 135 full-page reproductions of Gustave Dore's classic engravings from the 1867 edition.

The Divine Comedy is part of Barnes & Noble's Collectible Editions series. Each title in the series presents a classic work in an attractively designed edition bound in genuine bonded leather. These books make elegant additions to any home library.

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Product Details

Meet the Author

Dante Alighieri was born in Florence Italy in 1265. He published his first book of poetry, La Vita Nuova, in 1293. In 1301, a political dispute lead to his exile from Florence. Over the next few years he made his home in Verona, Lucca, and other cities. By 1310 he had written Inferno and Purgatorio, the first two books of his Divine Comedy. He wrote the third and concluding book, Paradiso, in the years after he found sanctuary in Ravenna in 1318. An allegorical account of his wanderings in a spiritual wilderness and eventual salvation under the guidance of his beloved Beatrice, The Divine Comedy is recognized as Dante's masterwork and a landmark of world literature. He died in exile in 1321 and was buried in Ravenna.
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 123 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(83)

4 Star

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3 Star

(12)

2 Star

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1 Star

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 123 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 21, 2008

    Beautiful edition

    The nicest English edition of the Divine Comedy I've seen in a long time. The translation is Longfellow's - a classic in its own right, though not to everyone's taste: blanc verse (not terza rima), ponderous, antiquated vocabulary, tortuous, baroque sentences. It takes getting used to, but it's worth the effort. The translation is happily matched by a complete set of Gustav Dore's engraved illustrations - there is one per every 3 or 4 pages, sometimes more. Again, Dore's illustrations are not to everyone's taste - some would find them classicistic, cold and a little boring - but it remains one of the most celebrated masterpieces of the 19th century most celebrated illustrator, and as such, worth perusing. The quality of reproduction is surprisingly good for a mass edition. To find imperfections one really has to squint and look very closely. The book, therefore, is very Victorian, very 19th century in spirit. It strives to be so in appearance as well - handsome red (bonded) leather cover, spine with heavy bands, gold lettering, all edges gilt, yellow silk tassel marker. The cover is embossed with beautiful design, rather 1930th in style. The paper is good quality, the type is easy to read. The book is a pleasure to hold and leaf through - not too heavy or oversize, like so many gift editions of classics that are literally unsupportable - one cannot hold them in hands long enough to read. It would make a beautiful gift, but I bought it for my own library.

    42 out of 43 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted November 29, 2008

    it is a classic

    Anyone that writes a review of this or any book and substitutes "aloud" for "allowed" should not be allowed to express their opinion aloud. This is required reading, and a centuries old classic. If you have the drive to forge your way through this epic, you will find it very interesting and enlightening.

    16 out of 17 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 22, 2008

    Wonderful!

    A beautiful display of the translated version!

    14 out of 14 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 27, 2010

    A must have for Dante fans...........but!

    This is extremely hard to read. I was able to keep up with the plot through about the first half of purgatory, but only because I have read the inferno and purgatory with other Dante translations. By the time I reached the tenth canto of paradise I was so sick of trying to figure out what was going on that I just stopped. I really wish the publishers of this book would have gone with another translation. Nevertheless, this is a very nice copy of the Divine Comedy for a Dante fan to have. I would not however recommend this to someone who has not previously read Dante.

    12 out of 14 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 25, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    The best leather bound Divine Comedy book on the market!

    The down side: Longfellow translation can be difficult to read until you are half-way through the first book. I prefer the Musa translations. I liked the annotations found in the Penguin Classics versions with Musa and read Musa at the same time.

    The up side: You would pay this price for a quality book that featured the Gustavo Dore pictures alone. The drawings are AWESOME! The cover itself is a work of art--it well depicts the nature of the Divine Comedy. The pages are "creamy" colored, the type font is very readable. This book just looks good inside and out.

    Easton Press' version may have a higher quality binding--but it does NOT look as good on the shelf as this book. If I had a choice between the two publishers for a free version, I would choose this book over Easton Press. You will NOT regret buying this particular version of The Divine Comedy!

    9 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 3, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Possibly the most difficult book I've ever read...totally worth it!

    When I got this book, I didn't know that it was footnote-less, which makes it kind of challenging with the archaic language and all the historical references. It takes a while to get into the swing of Dante's writing style, but in the end, it's definitely worth it. The message is beautiful and the whole book is a great way to exercise your brain.

    5 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 10, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    The Divine Comedy-Dante's Inferno is Funny as Hell.

    All joking aside, the Divine Comedy is a classic for a reason. It's masterful writing is still evident today.<BR/><BR/>This edition, aside from being affordable, is also a very good translation. It foregoes Dante's original rhyme scheme, but is otherwise rather accurate. The illustrations are very good as well, though it foregoes the diagrams and map that I have personally found helpful in previous editions.<BR/><BR/>To be honest, there isn't much to say that hasn't been said in the past 700 years: it's a solid read, especially if you want a more reinforced classical background.

    5 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 18, 2009

    Very Good.

    This is one of the best editions I have seen and read. Even though the vocabulary is a little hard and outdated this is still a classic and should be read.

    3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 16, 2009

    Beautiful

    I bought this copy as a gift. The cover and pages are beautiful, and the recipient was thrilled.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 6, 2009

    Great classic!

    I really like this version as it has the Longfellow translation with the Dore drawings and imho, this is as good as this classic can get. I only wish the cover, which is of excellent quality, was a bit more compatible with the Dore drawings, but that is only a feeble complaint. Excellent work, excellent quality, and an excellent price!

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 16, 2009

    I love this book!

    I read an edited version when I was in high school in my Senior English class. When I saw this book at B & N I knew I had to have it. This is not for the casual reader. This book is very in depth. Happy reading!!

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 18, 2013

    A nice reproduction. I appreciate the reviews on the product. Ho

    A nice reproduction. I appreciate the reviews on the product. However, I laugh at those who, after nearly 700 years, feel as if their review of the story is somehow important to our decision to purchase.

    1 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 25, 2013

    I bought this for myself a while back. It is one of my most cher

    I bought this for myself a while back. It is one of my most cherished books. Everything is beautifully worded into the wonderful mind of Dante Alighieri. The pages are wonderful, the illistrations are even better and the words are still touching and memorable even after nearly 700 years. Wonderful book. So glad I bought it!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 29, 2012

    Dante's Divine Comedy is a masterpiece, and this edition only ma

    Dante's Divine Comedy is a masterpiece, and this edition only makes is more so. All of these Barnes &amp; Noble leather bound books have an aura of class and beauty, but something about this one in particular stands out.
    As for the Divine Comedy itself, while Dante's wording can be fairly difficult to understand at times, is a brilliant tale. It centers around Dante himself, being lead on an epic journey through the 9 Circles of Hell, the rounds of Mount Purgatory, and finally the celestial spheres of Paradise. Not only does it serve as a work of literature, but also, a bit of a history book, describing characters, events and ideas that surrounded the period of Dante's life.
    While I certainly enjoyed the whole book, I have a personal love of poetic justice, which Dante executes perfectly in The Inferno. One of my favorites had to be the false prophets, who tried to look forward into the future in life, so in death their heads have been attatched backwards, so they must always look behind them.
    Gustave Dore's excellent depictions of scenes from all 3 parts of the Divine Comedy add a lot to the book, as well as occasionally help out when one gets confused with Dante's difficult to decipher language. However, these illustrations steadily decrease from Inferno to Paradiso, to the point where they only appear once every few Cantos.
    My honest reccomendation: if you have the patience to bear Dante's wording, The Divine Comedy will provide an epic unlike any you've ever witnessed before.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 13, 2011

    Classic, but not easy.

    Aside from its beautiful design, the literature was well written. Mind you, some sections of the novel could be confusing at times, because its a rough english translation from the old Latin language. In my opinion, I think Purgatorio was the hardest section to understand. You might have to refer to cliffnotes or sparknotes on some chapters in order to understand what Dante is talking about. Good price for this pretty edition.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted November 18, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    A truly stunning version but with a down side.

    Between the beautiful pictures and extremely well done translation its a most have copy of The Divine Comedy even if you own a paperback version. On the down side though is really difficult get lost in the story cause of the translation. Although the translation does give it that old tome feel which is what made me pick this book up in the first place. On the whole its a great story just have to take it in strides, maybe thats what the amazing art work is there for to give your imagination help to carry the story along...

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 28, 2010

    A Challenging book

    The poetry can be difficult to understand and I honestly did not follow all of the old language used. However even with a layman's understanding of the the words, I still found it interesting and the poetry beautiful.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 15, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    Good read, sad quality

    This amazing book inspired me to work away from sin and create an understanding between myself and others. Opened my eyes to what it was like back then. The only complaint I have on this book is that the STICKER on the front was NOT CENTERED and MADE IN CHINA. Though everything is now a days. Don't get this book for quality. GET THIS BOOK TO READ!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 3, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    classic

    I've had this for so long now its family

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted November 15, 2013

    Hands down the nicest book in the Barnes & Noble leatherboun

    Hands down the nicest book in the Barnes &amp; Noble leatherbound collection. This thing is a real work of art. The layout is amazing, the font is bold and large, and it is just absolutely FILLED with amazing pictures. Even if you don't read a single word it's lovely simply to thumb through.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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