Saturday, February 2, 2013

Geryon And the Fifth Layer of Hell

The River Styx runs through the fifth layer of Hell. And the Arch Devil Geryon presides over it. In Greek mythology Geryon was a son of the medusa, but for our purposes he is the huge, beastly ruler of the Fifth Level of Hell. We believe he looks like this.

In Dante's Inferno Geryon has become the Monster of Fraud, a winged beast with the face of an honest man, the paws of a lion, the body of a wyvern, and a poisonous sting at the tip of his tail. Which is consistent of this rendering. That he is indeed the Arch Duke prevailing over the Fifth Circle of Hell is debatable. It's a woeful place. Probably looks a little bit like this.

The river Styx runs through this level of Hell, and in it are punished the wrathful and the gloomy. The former are forever lashing out at each other in anger, furious and naked, tearing each other piecemeal with their teeth. The latter are gurgling in the black mud, slothful and sullen, withdrawn from the world. Their lamentations bubble to the surface as they try to repeat a doleful hymn, though with unbroken words they cannot say it. Because you lived a cruel, vindictive and hateful life, you meet your fate in the Styx.

And a river runs through it.

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