Dante: Poet of the Impossible

Art Spotlight: Dante and Virgil in Hell

Red Snow is Falling Down (seriously)

Robert ponders red rains and Hell's weather.

Science Goes to Hell: Dante's Gravity and Lucifer's Math

There are so many reasons to love Dante's "The Divine Comedy." It's a crash course in medieval Christian theology, a 14th century dirt sheet, a smorgasbord of history and a journey into an amazing mind. Plus you get fearsome monsters, bawdy demons and -- yes -- medieval science! Dante wrote "The Divine Comedy" in the common language of Italian rather than the Latin of the upper class. This way it reached the masses and did so without the aid of someone else's inept translation. To quote Alison Cornish in "The Vulgarization of Science," Dante made it his business to "integrate learning into the vernacular forms, and to make it accessible even to the unschooled."