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Dante Alighieri, or simply Dante, born c. 1265 in Florence, Italy, was an influential Italian poet which helped cement the standard Italian language. He is well known for his Divine Comedy, an epic poem narrating Dante's progress through hell, purgatory, and heaven. Doom itself shows some elements that are evidently taken from that work, such as the names of the third episode, Inferno, which is the name for the first part of the Divine Comedy, that takes place in hell, as well as a couple of the levels, Limbo and especially Dis, named after parts of hell as appearing in Dante's Inferno. Additionally, part of the texturing used in the hellish levels mimics some of the many descriptive passages of hellish locales found in the poet's work, that includes rivers of blood or dry and fiery landscapes.

The Divine Comedy has also been used or referred to by some level designers in the fan community, notably John Anderson (Dr. Sleep), who has released a series of levels named after and roughly inspired by the work, some of which are part of The Ultimate Doom and the Master Levels for Doom II, published by id Software.