- Museum number
Illustration to Dante's "Divine Comedy", 'Inferno' - The nine circles of Hell; diagram of the nine circles with the wider rings at base, narrowing in size as they ascend. 1824-27
Graphite with watercolour
- Production date
Height: 515 millimetres
Width: 363 millimetres
- Curator's comments
- Blake's illustrations to Dante were commissioned by John Linnell; it was planned to engrave the series, but the project was interrupted by Blake's death.
This drawing was exhibited in the Wordsworth Trust 2007 exhibition, 'Dante Rediscovered.' The following text is taken from the exhibition catalogue, see p.122,cat.36:
Blake has scrawled at the side: 'This is upside down when viewed from Hells Gate' which indeed it is, for the diagram is organised with the lowest circles at the top. It may not have been intended as part of the finished series, but as an attempt to work out the sequence of the circles. It also contains remarks by Blake that reveal his hostility to Dante, and in particular his distate for the vengefulness of the Inferno: 'Whatever Book is for Venegeance for Sin & whatever Book is Against the Forgiveness of Sins is not of the Father but of Satan the Accuser & Father of Hell.'
See D.Bindman,S.Hebron & M.O'Neill,'Dante Rediscovered: From Blake to Rodin', (Grasmere:The Wordsworth Trust),2007,p.122,cat no.36.
- Not on display
- Exhibition history
2000/1 Nov-Feb, London, Tate Britain, 'William Blake'
2007 Aug-Nov, Grasmere, Dove Cottage, 'Dante Rediscovered'
- Associated titles
Associated Title: Divine Comedy
Associated Title: Inferno
- Acquisition date
- Prints and Drawings
- Registration number