Skip to main content Accessibility help
×
Home
Hostname: page-component-99c86f546-zzcdp Total loading time: 0.281 Render date: 2021-11-27T00:19:10.705Z Has data issue: true Feature Flags: { "shouldUseShareProductTool": true, "shouldUseHypothesis": true, "isUnsiloEnabled": true, "metricsAbstractViews": false, "figures": true, "newCiteModal": false, "newCitedByModal": true, "newEcommerce": true, "newUsageEvents": true }

Gustave Doré's Illustrations for Dante's Divine Comedy: Innovation, Influence, and Reception

from II - Interpretations

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  12 September 2012

Aida Audeh
Affiliation:
Hamline University
Get access

Summary

Gustave Doré's (1832–83) illustrations and Dante's Divine Comedy have become so intimately connected that even today, nearly 150 years after their initial publication, Doré's rendering of the poet's text still accompanies, or even determines, our vision of the Commedia. Indeed, Doré's illustrations together with Dante's text have appeared in roughly 200 editions, with translations from the poet's original Italian available in multiple languages. Doré's fame as Dante's illustrator is worldwide, and the pervasiveness of his Commedia imagery is undeniable. Yet there was another side to Doré. He was also a prolific painter and sculptor with ambitions for acceptance in the world of the beaux-arts salon – ambitions he supported with substantial profits accrued from the literary illustrations for which he is best known.

The balance Doré sought to achieve – popular success with his illustrations, on the one hand, and esteem of artists and critics involved in the beaux arts for his painting and sculpture, on the other hand – was precarious and, ultimately, unsuccessful for him. The role Dante plays in this balance is unique, as Doré composed both popular illustrations and salon paintings based on his reading of the Commedia. However, it was his illustrations of Inferno that truly established his renown – renown which, for the most part, excluded consideration of his abilities as a fine artist. As Doré himself remarked, “My adversary is myself. I must […] kill the illustrator [to be] spoken of only as the painter.”

Type
Chapter
Information
Studies in Medievalism XVIII
Defining Medievalism(s) II
, pp. 125 - 164
Publisher: Boydell & Brewer
Print publication year: 2009

Access options

Get access to the full version of this content by using one of the access options below. (Log in options will check for institutional or personal access. Content may require purchase if you do not have access.)

Send book to Kindle

To send this book to your Kindle, first ensure no-reply@cambridge.org is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part of your Kindle email address below. Find out more about sending to your Kindle.

Note you can select to send to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations. ‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be sent to your device when it is connected to wi-fi. ‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.

Find out more about the Kindle Personal Document Service.

Available formats
×

Send book to Dropbox

To send content items to your account, please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account. Find out more about sending content to Dropbox.

Available formats
×

Send book to Google Drive

To send content items to your account, please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account. Find out more about sending content to Google Drive.

Available formats
×