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A small section of the boiling pitch in Bolgia 5.
A small section of the boiling pitch in Bolgia 5.
Bolgia 5

Located in the Eighth Circle of Hell, Bolgia 5 is the home of the corrupt politicians (aka The Grafters).
It is known for its large pool of boiling pitch and its demon punishers.


Bolgia 5 can be found in Malebolge, a region known for its extreme punishments. This particular bolgia is reserved for politicians who have abused their power for personal gain.

Get In

After exploring Bolgia number four continue down the path to Bolgia 5. Also, if not already inside this molten hell, you can call your local politician to arrange a reservation. Of course, if you wish to be more ambitious, you could become a corrupt politician yourself!

Get Around

The primary form of transportation is by foot. However, be careful to stay away from the shores of molten tar and pitch!


Bolgia 5's most distinguished charactertistic is the river of pitch. The pitch itself is sticky and boiling. If a traveler were to look closely at the pitch, he or she would notice the sinners that occassionally come to the surface of the pitch. Since it is against the rules to come to the surface, the demons attempt to capture the sinners who do so. The demons are grotesque and carry grappling hooks. The hooks are used to rip the flesh off of the sinners who come out of the pitch.
An artist's rendition of the occupants of Bolgia 5.
An artist's rendition of the occupants of Bolgia 5.

A picture of the demon punishers. Beware, the punishers will attack anyone.
A picture of the demon punishers. Beware, the punishers will attack anyone.

Previous travelers recommend:
  • Hiding behind rocks
  • Watching sinners be thrown into boiling pitch
  • Receive aid from hideous demons
  • Talk to captured politicians
  • Run from angry demons

Stay Safe

It is best advised to avoid walking out in the open. The punishers that patrol this bolgia are known for attacking anyone that comes near the bolgia. It is also advised to not touch the pitch because it is hot and sticks to the skin. It is best to have a guide when traveling through this bolgia to avoid harm and injury.

Get Out

There is currently construction under way to replace the bridge that leads of out this bolgia. Until that construction is complete, any and all travelers must climb down into Bolgia 6 to leave this bolgia.

Famous Inhabitants

"Santa Zita's Elders"- corrupt senators of Lucca
Bonturo Dati- Luccan senator
Friar Gomita of Gallura- 1300 administrator of Gallura, Pisa
Michel Zanche de Logodoro- King of Sardinia


Malacoda- leader of the demons. His name literally translates to "Evil Tail."
Curlybeard- second in command. Controls the demons outside Malacoda's presence.
Hellken, Grizzly- now most likely covered in pitch or burns. According to one traveler, they fell into the pitch while purusing an escaping grafter.
Deaddog, Curlybeard, Grafter, Dragontooth, Pigtusk, Catclaw, Cramper, and Crazyred- other demons named among the ranks


"While continuing on my journey to Heaven with Virgil, I passed through Bolgia 5 of the Malebolge. It was a rather dreadful experience. Shortly after entering the bolgia, I was forced to hide from the gruesome punishers as they threw someone into the pitch. Virgil was able to negotiate a safe passage through the bolgia with the punishers because the bridge was not accessible at this time.As we were being escorted, a politician was caught by the punishers. I was able to talk to the politician for a short period of time. Eventually the politician escaped, and we used that as an opportunity to get away from the punishers. The punishers began to chase us but we managed to escape into the next bolgia before being captured. I would not recommend visiting this bolgia if you want a safe journey through Hell."
-Dante Alighieri

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