Ezra Pound belatedly conceded that T.S.Eliot "was the true Dantescan voice" of the modern world. This is the first study to deal with this assertion and the relationship between the two poets. It attempts to show how Dante's total vision impinges on Eliot's craft and thought. Eliot's indebtedness to his Italian master, whose poetry he deemed "as the most persistent and deepest influence" upon his own verse, manifests itself in a variety of literary strategies, including imitation, parody, citation and allusion. At the same time Eliot's debt transcends the literary to embrace Dante's total vision, or his philosophy, theology and politics. Various aspects of Eliot's recourse to Dante's craft and thought may appear in a new light - his recurring fascination with Ulysses in "Inferno XXVI" and especially with Arnaut Daniel in "Purgatorio XXVI"; the exodus motif as it informs "The Waste Land", "The Hollow Men" and "Ash Wednesday"; the metaphor of Dante's book of memory as it applies to Eliot's work; the notion of order in its ethical, aesthetic and political dimensions.
Finally, light is shed on some of the reasons why Eliot's Dante ultimately differs radically from that of the other moderns.
Acknowledgements - Dante according to Eliot - Death by Water and Dante's Ulysses - The Poetics of the Desert - Eliot's Book of Memory - The Aesthetics and Politics of Order - Eliot's Dante and the Moderns - Index