| Quote #19
A voice that sang beyond us was our guide;
As our heroes pass from Purgatory proper into the Earthly Paradise, the final angel welcomes them with the Latin song, “Come, ye blessed of my father” – which will be Jesus' words to the faithful at the Last Judgment. He urges them to come and “inherit the Kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world.”
| Quote #20
…but they were not deflected with such force
Dante’s first impression of the Earthly Paradise is of harmonious music. Because the harmonies come from birdsong and the wind in the leaves, we're reminded of the concept of nature as an artist. It is as if God created this place as a sanctuary after the trials of Purgatory.
| Quote #21
O Virgins, sacrosanct, if I have ever,
For the second time in Purgatorio, Dante invokes the Muses to help him complete his poetic task. This time, he wants their help in describing and accurately recording the procession that he sees in the forest, ending with Beatrice. The “Helicon” invoked here is the mountain home of the Muses where the wellsprings were thought to inspire poetry. Also “Urania” is the goddess of astronomy and all things celestial. It is appropriate that Dante invokes her because he is getting ready to describe something celestial: the procession from Heaven.