| Quote #4
Here, more than elsewhere, I saw multitudes
Because avarice (or greed) and prodigality (or stinginess) are simply extremes on the same spectrum, both types of sinners are punished in the same circle. Since they had faulty relations with the material world, either hoarding or squandering their money, they are abused in Hell by the weights which they must physically haul around. Apparently, they have not learned their lesson, either because the avaricious cannot understand the prodigal or vice versa.
| Quote #5
[Virgil]: "Wedged in the slime, they say: ‘We had been sullen
In life, the sullen refused to engage in life’s joys, appreciating neither the "sweet air" nor the light of the sun. Dante also plays on the idea of the sullen resentfully refusing to speak. As punishment, then, they are immersed in "blackened mud" – away from the "sweet air that’s gladdened by the sun" – which inhibits their ability to speak and forces them to gurgle out their words.
| Quote #6
…the sepulchers make all the plain uneven,
Heresy, which Dante defines as the simple denial of man’s immortal soul, is ironically punished with the obvious presupposition that, yes, the soul is immortal because it writhes in pain for all of eternity. Those who deny that Hell even exists are appropriately punished with burning, the most familiar image in Hell. As a metaphor for life and warmth, fire ironically torments those who reject the idea of life after death. Locked into their tombs, the burning heretics are an ironic reminder that the dead do indeed lead an afterlife.