Many in life esteem themselves great men
who then will wallow here like pigs in mud,
leaving behind them their repulsive fame.

[Quanti si tegnon or là sù gran regi
che qui staranno come porci in brago,
di sé lasciando orribili dispregi!]

Dante Alighieri the poet
Dante Alighieri (1265-1321) Italian poet
The Divine Comedy [Divina Commedia], Book 1 “Inferno,” Canto 8, l. 49ff (8.49) [Virgil] (1309) [tr. Musa (1971)]

(Source (Italian)). Alternate translations:

How many Kings were thought of high renown,
Who wallow in this marsh, like Hogs in mire,
Leaving their horrid characters behind!
[tr. Rogers (1782), l. 41ff]

There many a regal Chief of ancient note,
Wallowing thro' mire obscene lament their lot,
In ruin roll'd, like brethren of the sty.
[tr. Boyd (1802), st. 9]

There above
How many now hold themselves mighty kings
Who here like swine shall wallow in the mire,
Leaving behind them horrible dispraise!
[tr. Cary (1814)]

How many kings now there set up their horn,
That here shall wallow as in filth the swine,
And leave their names to execrable scorn!
[tr. Dayman (1843)]

How many up there now think themselves great kings, that shall lie here like swine in mire, leaving behind them horrible reproaches!
[tr. Carlyle (1849)]

How many mighty kings are now above,
Shall one day stand like hogs within their stye,
Disparaging their memory terribly.
[tr. Bannerman (1850)]

Above how many live as mighty kings
Who here like swine shall grovel in the mire,
Leaving behind them shame and foul contempt!
[tr. Johnston (1867)]

How many are esteemed great kings up there,
⁠Who here shall be like unto swine in mire,
⁠Leaving behind them horrible dispraises!
[tr. Longfellow (1867)]

How many now hold themselves great kings up there who shall stand here like swine in the slush, leaving horrible dispraise of themselves!
[tr. Butler (1885)]

Many great kings who now lift up their horns
Will wallow here like swine in filthy swill,
Leaving their memories to most horrible scorns.
[tr. Minchin (1885)]

How many now up there are held great kings who shall stand here like swine in mire, leaving of themselves horrible dispraises.
[tr. Norton (1892)]

How many are there that bear themselves above as mighty kings, that here shall stand like swine in slush, leaving behind them loathing and condemnation!
[tr. Sullivan (1893)]

How many count themselves up there great princes,
Who here like hogs in mire shall have their station,
Leaving behind them horrible reproaches!
[tr. Griffith (1908)]

How many above there now account themselves great kings who shall lie here like swine in the mire, leaving of themselves horrible dispraises!
[tr. Sinclair (1939)]

How many above there deem themselves great kings
Now, who shall lie wallowing in mire like swine,
Leaving a name that with dishonor rings!
[tr. Binyon (1943)]

Many who strut like kings up there are such
As here shall wallow hog-like in the mud,
Leaving behind nothing but foul reproach.
[tr. Sayers (1949)]

How many living now, chancellors of wrath,
shall come to lie here yet in this pigmire,
leaving a curse to be their aftermath!
[tr. Ciardi (1954)]

How many up there now account themselves great kings, that here shall lie like swine in mire, leaving behind them horrible dispraises.
[tr. Singleton (1970)]

How many up above now count themselves
great kings, who'll wallow here like pigs in slime,
leaving behind foul memories of crimes!
[tr. Mandelbaum (1980)]

How many, up there, think themselves great kings
Who here will wallow in the mire like pigs,
Leaving behind them nothing but infamous horrors.
[tr. Sisson (1981)]

In the world above, how many a self-deceiver
Now counting himself a mighty king will sprawl
Swinelike amid the mire when life is over,
Leaving behind a name that men revile.
[tr. Pinsky (1994)]

How many consider themselves great kings up
above, who here will be like pigs in the mire, leaving
behind horrible dispraise of themselves!
[tr. Durling (1996)]

How many up there think themselves mighty kings, that will lie here like pigs in mire, leaving behind them dire condemnation!
[tr. Kline (2002)]

How many, in the world above, pose there
as kings but here will like like pigs in much,
leaving behind them horrible dispraise.
[tr. Kirkpatrick (2006)]

How many now above who think themselves
great kings will lie here in the mud, like swine,
leaving behind nothing but ill repute!
[tr. Hollander/Hollander (2007)]

How many think themselves the greatest of kings,
But here will lie around like pigs in slime,
Remembered for having indulged in horrible things!
[tr. Raffel (2010)]

And there are others up there of the same
Persuasion they are kings. They, too, will be
Pigs in this filthy sty, and leave behind
Nothing but curses rained upon the hole
Their swelled heads filled.
[tr. James (2013), l. 47ff]

Added on 3-Mar-23 | Last updated 22-Mar-24
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