Inferno Canto X
Canto X of Dante Alighieri’s Inferno starts with Virgil and Dante on their way to the sixth circle. The sixth circle is where the tombs of those who believe that the soul dies with the body are put. We call them Epicureans.
Dante then meets two Epicureans. The first one, Farinata degli Uberti notices Dante because of his accent. Farinata asks who his ancestors are and finds out that they were his enemies. The conversation goes on until another Epicurean appears, Cavalcante dei Cavalcanti. Dante and Cavalcante know each because Guido, the son of Cavalcante is good friends with Dante and he married Beatrice.
Cavalcante then asks why his son isn’t with him. Dante gives a reply that makes Cavalcante think that his son is dead. After hearing this, Cavalcante got depressed and went back to his place. Dante realizes that those who are in the sixth circle can only see the future. Farinata and Dante continue their conversation then Virgil calls Dante and tells him that they get going. Dante was left with curiousity as he and Virgil walk a path that disgusted them. I find the start slow and as the story goes on it becomes fast paced because of the way Farinata was introduced to Dante by Virgil.
I also have a feeling that Virgil knows their groups are enemies. Line 39 of Canto X, Virgil told Dante “your words must be appropriate. ” Why? How come Dante knows nothing about Farinata? Another fast paced part was when Cavalcante suddenly appeared. Vague information was given about him. When you think about it, it’s strange how Farinata and Cavalcante didn’t even mind each other. Their supposed to be enemies, right? Farinata is a Ghibellines while Cavalcante is a Guelph. They didn’t even argue. In this canto, you can see how Dante is always curious about the Florentines.
He asked Farinata who else are in the sixth circle and also asked Virgil if he can meet any of the Epicureans. Much curiousity is awaited at the next canto. We can see how Virgil was rushing Dante to leave. There is also a hint that Dante might meet Beatrice. As they walk, at lines 135 to 136, “along a path that strikes into a valley whose stench, as it rose up, disgusted us. ” In my opinion, the stench symbolizes the intensity of what they have done. The stronger the stench, the more intense they have done.