The philosophical tradition has always coexisted in Gogol’s mind with the literary one. Dante Alighieri, poet, but a philosopher and theologian as well, took one of the main places in Gogol’s creation in St. Petersburg and especially during the years in Italy in 1837–1848. Working in Rome on “Dead Souls”, the writer more and more penetrated the world of Dante as a thinker and theologian, having experienced, apparently, the impact in three main directions. 1. Trichotomy of “Dead Souls”. Volume 1 of the poem is often called abroad “Russian Dante Comedy”. However, the prototype could be not only the “Divine Comedy”, but also the journey of the monk Algeric from the 12th century Latin manuscript, the philosophy of F. Schelling, The “Human Comedy” by O. de Balzac, and finally, the dogma of Orthodoxy, which is most likely for the Gogol Christian believer. 2. The theory of the Russian monarchy. Based on the Dantian monarchist views (first on “Monarchy”), Gogol reached their roots of the biblical, Byzantine sense, added to this the ideas of the French moralists of the 17th century, A.S. Pushkin’s and Metropolitan Philaret’s ideas. The result was the own Gogolian theory of the sacred-absolutist kingdom, also based on the Dantian principle of the separation of secular and spiritual power. 3. Morality. When writing the first volume of the poem, Gogol proceeded from the spiritual heritage of the Renaissance and the New Age, as well as the French Enlightenment. At a late stage related to religious quests, Gogol could not, when writing 2 volume of “Dead Souls”, follow the paths of Salvation of literary heroes in the spirit of Dante. Caught up by his death in Moscow in 1952, he did not manage to fully comprehend the idea and dot all i. Nevertheless, Gogol did not abandon his usual (and Dante’s) thought about the divine nature of great talents and their chosenness. Nevertheless, the fact that in his search he made a start from Dante is crucial and opens a field for further promising discoveries.
Dante, Gogol, Purgatory, Rome, St. Petersburg, theology, Renaissance, emperor, philosophy, St. fathers