If ever there were a couple who personify the spirit of Snogvent then it has to be doomed lovers Paolo Malatesta and Francesca da Rimini. Much art has been dedicated to them, often kissing because that's what got them in trouble but also what got them a starring role in Volume I of Dante Alighieri's The Divine Comedy. The Victorian's loved a bit of P&F because you get to have the vicarious enjoyment of an affair, before seeing them cast into Hell for all eternity as is only right and proper (apparently). Down with that sort of thing. Anyway, it all starts innocently enough...
|Paolo and Francesca (1851-2) Alexander Munro|
|Paolo and Francesca (1894) Frank Dicksee|
|Paolo and Francesca (1902) Christopher Williams|
|Paolo and Francesca (1870) Amos Cassioli|
|Paolo and Francesca (1819) Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres|
|Paolo and Francesca (c.1887) Gaetano Previati|
But that isn't where the story ends, because Dante, a contemporary of the unhappy couple, decided to include them in his Inferno, so their snogging continued into Hell. Blimey, they really are that couple, aren't they?
|Paolo and Francesca (1835) Ary Scheffer|
|An Angel Leading a Soul into Hell (15th century) circle of Hieronymus Bosch|
Lawks, I only nipped in for some batteries and a cinnamon bun... Anyway, my point is that being blown about a bit seems infinitely preferable to whatever is happening to any of these poor souls. I don't even want to know what's going on in the left-hand cave. Flipping Nora. I get that being blown about a bit could be really irritating, but it's hardly torture, but maybe that's it. Maybe hell is being stuck with your poor decisions for all eternity until they become really, really boring. Yes, I'm sure it was all exciting to start with, being whisked about without your pants on, but after a few millennia of just going round and round, and never being able to keep your hair out of your face, I bet you'd be hoping for a bit of stabbing just to break up the monotony. So I guess the lesson we should take from today's picture is be careful with your books because the chasm of Hell awaits you if you damage the spine.
Oh, and probably don't kiss your brother in law, because it makes Christmas really awkward. See you tomorrow...