We have discussed many topics related to the novel Inferno by Dan Brown without ever mentioning its many different covers.
We can try to talk about it now. Could you provide us with a backstory in case we neglect something?
The book was released worldwide on May 14, 2013. However, readers have found the book available in different formats in bookstores around the world. The various covers differ depending on the language of publication, but they are all similar.
Here are some examples.
The US edition:
The American cover is red and black and is reminiscent of the cover of The Da Vinci Code, the previous bestseller by Dan Brown.
Both covers have gold letters in upper case. They have a tear in the cover paper, as if there is something to be discovered.
The portrait of Dante on the Inferno cover derives from a painting by Sandro Botticelli dating to 1495. This painting is located in Switzerland and belongs to a private collection. The head of the Italian poet is located in the center of the nine circles representing the first circles of Hell described in Canto 33 of the Inferno by Dante Alighieri.
A letter appears in each circle, as follows:
1 (c), 2 (a), 3 (t), 4 (r), 5 (o), 6 (a), 7 (c), 8 (c), 9 (r).
The letters do not match the name of each circle, which therefore suggests that some other mystery exists within the book.
Mike Windsor, Art Director for Brown’s Inferno, was the one who designed the cover and said:
The central image is of Dante Alighieri. Since his work is the catalyst for Langdon’s adventure and he is such a monumental figure in literature I felt he had to be on the jacket. Plus, using a historical figure represented in a painting of his time firmly puts the reader in Dan Brown territory. The city scape of Florence is to give the reader a since of location… hidden behind the burnt and ripped background, which has become a sort of staple with Dan’s jackets. It adds an element of mystery… Like you are discovering something just under the surface. And of course there are the rings in the background and over the image of Dante that represent hell.
He then added that he was inspired by Bosch, Durer and Gustave Doré.
The UK edition:
The predominant color on this cover is gray.
While the UK and US covers are different, both have an image of Dante and are set against a background of the city of Florence.
The figure of Dante in this English edition seems to come from an unidentifiable statue. However, you can recognize the presence of an element of the Arabic aesthetics: the lettering used for the title; the tip of the letter F, which seems to represent the tip of a flame, is blood that is descending in a liquid; the shape of the blood that reminds one of smoking; elements that resemble the genie of Aladdin’s lamp.
The Italian edition:
Italy is the country in which the novel is set, so the cover of the Italian edition is of particular interest to us.
This cover is very similar to the American one, but is bare in comparison. Also, the predominant color is red.
It is interesting that in November 2013, a new cover of the Italian edition of Inferno appeared: it is totally black and no longer contains Dante’s profile. However, the symbol of the nine infernal circles remains.
Our friend Mohammad told us on Facebook that even the Persian edition of Inferno has two covers: an old one and a new one!
We don’t know the reason for this… if Mr. Dan Brown would let us know why we would be very happy 😉
We will write in the future about other covers of the novel Inferno.