The Illustrations of Gustave Dore for the Divine Comedy: The Complete Collection

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Paperback, 150 pages

The hundred and thirty-six illustrations of this book in large format have been originally done for the French and American editions of the Divine Comedy, between the years 1857 and 1868. That is to say: the portrait of Dante Alighieri (page 1); 75 illustrations for the Inferno; 42 for the Purgatorio; and 18 for the Paradiso. In the American version, the English translation of the famous poem of Dante was the first ever done in this tongue, by Rev. Henry Francis Cary.

This edition presents these plates in their original order, of course: Inferno (Hell), Purgatorio (Purgatory) and Paradiso (Heaven). However, we added three more illustrations to illustrate the introduction pages of each of these three parts, beautifully drawn by famous Irish artist Phoebe Anna Traquair in 1890. To each of the Doré’s illustrations, we added the numbers of the cantos and of the verses they are supposed to illustrate. Thus, you will easily establish the correct correspondence between each and every picture and any original Italian version or English translation of the Divine Comedy. We also added to them the same corresponding excerpts of their cantos you could find in any original American version of the book (in two vol.: 1. Inferno [1861]; 2. Purgatorio and Paradiso [1868])—inasmuch as the verses of your version of this book are numbered, of course.

To those who are already familiar with the pictures Gustave Doré drew for the Divine Comedy: we scanned ours from original printings before we carefully restored them and "cleaned" small scratches and various printing imperfections visible on any original copies. We also reviewed their contrasts (real black inking instead of gray) so as to restitute their depths often lost due to insufficient inking during the printing process of the 19th century. That’s why and how they seem to be of a higher quality than in any original printing.