The Price of Sin

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In every book the main character is faced with hardships. Some have a tragic ending whiles others have a happier more subtle ending. In both The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne and The Crucible by Arthur Miller this is evident. The downfall and ending of both characters are different but they share the same fate due to their actions and decisions. Their tragic endings are results of their sins, pride and guilt. The tragic downfall of Dimmesdale, from The Scarlet Letter and John Proctor from The Crucible are very similar yet different in the way it led up to their death. Dimmesdale and Proctor both commit adultery and from then on everything goes down hill. Proctor’s affair with Abigail Williams was the main cause of his death and downfall. “I look for John Proctor that took me from my sleep and put knowledge in my heart...You loved me, John Proctor, and whatever sin it is, you love me yet!” (Act 1 p.24) The quote above lets us know that Abigail is still in love with Proctor and wants him to leave his wife and come to her but he refuses and says that what they did was a thing in the past. “Wipe it out of mind. We never touched. Abby.” (Act 1 p.23) As a result of Proctor wanting to end all relations with Abigail, who will do anything to be with him, a chain of events happen that lead to Proctor being accused of being a witch and eventually his death. “You’re the Devil’s man…He wake me every night his eyes were like coals and his fingers claw my nick, and I sign, I sign…” (Act 3 p. 118-119). Proctor’s adultery lead to him being accused of a witch but he could have prevented his death if it wasn’t for his pride. Pride killed Proctor at the end of the novel not his adultery. Proctor could have saved his life and taken care of his... ... middle of paper ... ... mine!” (Chapter 11 p.126) Dimmesdale punishing himself day after day helped quicken his death. His guilt led him to hurt himself and hastened his death. Proctor on the other hand looks as if he isn’t guilty about anything. As we read The Crucible we know that the whole witch hunt could have been prevented if Proctor had confessed and knowing that all thing could have been avoided if he had confessed Proctor doesn’t seem to show an ounce of guilt but rather other emotions when talking about the affair or Abigail in general. “Let you go to Ezekiel Cheever—he knows you well. And tell him what she said to you last week… then, let you think on it.”(Act 2 p.53) Proctor in this quote seems as if he want the conversation to be over quickly. He is more ashamed and angry here than guilty and whenever the affair is mentioned or brought up he feel mostly anger and frustration.
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