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Durham University

Special Collections

Exhibitions at Palace Green Library

Hell, Heaven and Hope: A Journey through life and the afterlife with Dante

Palace Green Library

Look around you and the influence of medieval poet Dante Alighieri is everywhere. For centuries his work has inspired artists and writers from Botticelli to Dan Brown

This new temporary exhibition follows the story of Dante’s The Divine Comedy. Join his imagined journey through Hell, Purgatory and Heaven, meeting a cast of familiar and unfamiliar characters. Reflecting the entire human experience; his work considers the power of resilience through difficult times and ultimately a message of hope.

The exhibition is brought to life through Durham University’s collections, displayed alongside books and manuscripts from the internationally-renowned collections of Mr Livio Ambrogio, on show in Durham for the first time.

Today, Dante’s influence can be found in contemporary art, literature, music, film and popular culture. His striking depictions of the consequences of sin in Inferno, the struggles of Purgatory and ultimately the splendours of Heaven reflect our own stories; the choices we make, the consequences of our decisions, our behaviour and our resilience. Look closely enough and you may even find yourself.

Details of the IMEMS Dante public lectures can be found here:

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