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The Divine Comedy:

Paradiso

But then my mind was struck


by light that flashed and, with
this light, received what it had
asked. Here force failed my
high fantasy; but my desire and
will were moved already-like a
wheel revolving uniformly-by
the Love that moes the sun and
the other stars. Canto XXXIII,
Paradiso

What is Paradiso?
The dwelling place of God, the angels,
and the blessed.
Consists of 9 layers of different
heavens.
The poet's vision of this eternal place
of joy was heavily modeled after the
Ptolemaic system of astronomy
whereby a stationary earth is orbited
by the sun, the moon, and the planets.

Paradiso

Speheres of Paradiso

The Moon: The Inconstant


Mercury: The Ambitious
Venus: The Lovers
The Sun: The Wise
Mars: The Warriors of the Faith
Jupiter: The Just Rulers
Saturn: The Contemplative
The Fixed Stars
The Primum Mobile: The Angels
The Empyrean

What are these spheres?


Different spheres are different layers
of heavens that have its own
subjects, events, angelic orders and
virtues.
They are all similar, but the
difference in them comes in terms of
how close to God a soul gets.

The Moon: The Inconstant

Souls Encountered- The inconstant in


vows: Piccarda, the Empress Constance.
Subjects and Events- Physical
phenomena the work of celestial
intelligences, the freedom of the will.
Angelic Orders- Angels (guardians of
persons and bearers of tidings of God's
bounty).
Virtues- Fortitude

Mercury: The Ambitious

Souls Encountered- The ambitious of


the active life: the Emperor Justinian,
Romeo.
Subjects and Events- The history of
the Roman Empire; the mystery of
the Redemption.
Angelic Orders- Archangels
(protectors of nations and bearers of
tidings of great import).
Virtues- Justice

Venus: The Lovers

Souls Encountered- The lovers,


Charles Martel, Cunizza, Foulquet of
Marseilles, Rahab.
Subjects and Events- The constitution
of society; usurpation of rights.
Angelic Order- Principalities
(regulators of human government).
Virtues- Temperance

The Sun: The Wise

Souls Encountered- Theologians, Teachers,


Historians. Aquinas, Albertus, Gratian, Peter
Lombard, Solomon, Dionysius, Orosius
Subjects and Events- The life of St Francis,
the life of St Dominic, the wisdom of
Solomon, the glory of the resurrected body.
Angelic Order- Powers (image of Divine
Power and majesty, combaters of the
powers of darkness and of disease).
Virtues- Prudence

Mars: The Warriors of the


Faith

Souls Encountered- The Warriors:


Cacciaguida, Joshua, Judas Maccabaeus,
Charlemagne, Roland, William of Orange,
Renouard, Godfrey of Bouillon,Guiscard
Subjects and Events- Dante's exile, his
mission and work.
Angelic Orders- Virtues (image of Divine
Strength and Fortitude, workers of signs,
inspirers of endurance).
Virtues- Fortitude

Jupiter: The Just Rulers

Souls Encountered- The Just: David,


Trojan, Hezekiah, Constantine,
William II of Sicily, Rhipeus.
Subjects and Events- Divine and
human justice; grace and salvation.
Angelic Order- Dominations (image of
Divine Dominion).
Virtues- Justice

Saturn: The Contemplatives

Souls Encountered- TheContemplatives:


Peter Damian, Benedict, Macarius,
Romualdus.
Subjects and Events- Predestination; the
ascetic life; God's coming vengeance on
corrupt monasticism.
Angelic Orders- Thrones (image of Divine
Steadfastness, executors of God's
judgements).
Virtues- Temperance

The Fixed Stars: Faith, Hope, and


Love

Souls Encountered- Triumph of Christ, The


Virgin Mary, St Peter, St James, St John,
Adam.
Subjects and Events- Dante's examination
in the three theological virtues, St. Peter's
rebuke to the Church, Dante's temporary
blindness.
Angelic Orders- Cherubim (image of Divine
Wisdom).
Virtues- Faith, Hope, and Charity.

The Primum Mobile: The


Angels

Subjects and Events- Dante's vision


of the, angelic hierarchies, the
Creation.
Angelic Orders- Seraphim (image of
Divine Love)

The Empyrean

Souls Encountered- St Bernard the


Blessed in the Celestial Rose.
Subjects and Events- Beatrice returns
to her throne in the
Empyrean,Prayer of St Bernard.

After making his way through the nine


spheres of theParadiso, Dante ascends to a
mystical place beyond the physical realm.
The Empyrean is filled with light, joy, and
beauty and is devoid of space and time. It is
the eternal resting place of the blessed and
the home of God. In the Empyrean, Dante
sees a vision of a large white rose. All of the
blessed, including his beloved Beatrice, are
seated inside its petals.