Inferno Canto 33




Buddy Storm is an Associate Professor of English in the Templeton Honors College at Eastern University. He teaches courses on Shakespeare, Chaucer, and Milton, and he studies Medieval poetry.

Questions for Reflection

  • Why does Count Ugolino decide to tell his story to Dante (7-9)?
  • How is Ugolino similar to Francesca (Inferno 5)? How does Dante’s response to him show Dante’s moral growth?
  • How do we see in Ugolino’s story twisted and infernal parodies of Christ’s passion and the Eucharist? Why would Dante place this imagery in the 33rd canto of Inferno?
  • What does the theme of cannibalism that haunts this canto tell us about sin at its most vicious?
  • Who is Fra Alberigo and what is unique about his damnation? Can some sins kill the soul so thoroughly that repentance is never possible?
  • “To be rude to him was courtesy” (33.150): how is this a justifiable attitude for the Christian Dante to have?


  • Dr. Buddy Storm
  • Templeton Honors College
  • Run Time 7:30