Symbolization of Chillingworth as the Devil in Hawthorne's The Scarlet Letter

Symbolization of Chillingworth as the Devil in Hawthorne's The Scarlet Letter

Length: 519 words (1.5 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Good Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

Nathaniel Hawthorne crammed The Scarlet Letter with religious symbolism. One of the most interesting symbols is that of Chillingworth as the devil. All through the novel there are numerous indications and relations that verify the fact that Chillingworth is a delegate for the king of darkness.

One of the various ways Chillingworth serves as the devil’s advocate is by being the antithesis of Reverend Arthur Dimmesdale, the palpable Jesus figure of the narrative. Chillingworth keenly sets out to devastate Dimmesdale, as Hawthorne informs us when referring to Chillingworth's unearthing of Dimmesdale's secret, “All that guilty sorrow, hidden from the world, whose great heart would have pitied and forgiven, to be revealed to him, the Pitiless, to him, the Unforgiving!” The capitalization of the words "Pitiless" and "Unforgiving" confirm that Chillingworth is Satan in human form. Symbolically, on an additional, more perceptible note, Chillingworth steals one of Dimmesdale's gloves and drops it on the scaffold in the middle of the town. The sexton returns it to Dimmesdale saying, "Satan...

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

Essay on Dying by the Struggle: The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne

- ... And then to look at myself and see the dark reality of the man they idolize?" (Hawthorne 172) but he fails due to the lack of bravery. When he meets Hester in the forest, he says that he does not have courage and strength that she has “I must die here. I do not have the strength or the courage to venture into the wide, strange, difficult world alone!” (Hawthorne 179) He admits that he isn't as emotionally and mentally strong as her but later he builds up his bravery and finally confesses to the town....   [tags: lies, dimmesdale, devil]

Good Essays
918 words (2.6 pages)

The Forest as a Place of Truth and Freedom in Nathaniel Hawthorne's "The Scarlet Letter"

- The forest in Nathaniel Hawthorne’s novel, The Scarlet Letter, represents an array of personas. Both rumors and scandal surround the forest, causing a biased view of this secluded location within the Puritan community. Yet, Hawthorne designates the forest as a place of truth, independence, and joy to those with secrets. Boston’s Puritan society of the mid 1600’s feared the near-bye forest. Believing that “the black man that haunts the forest” (71) and that the witches who do the devil’s work there, the townspeople are warned to stay away the sinful place....   [tags: Nathaniel Hawthorne, Scarlet Letter, ]

Good Essays
761 words (2.2 pages)

Essay on A Perception of Sin: Nathaniel Hawthorne’s The Scarlet Letter

- Through out the course of history, those who were considered sinners were often out casted from the society. This is much the case with Hester Prynne in Nathaniel Hawthorne’s The Scarlet Letter. After a public trial, Hester is considered a sinner due to her birthing of a so called “devil child”. Hester is convicted to the life long bearing of a scarlet letter on her chest. The Scarlet Letter that Hester Prynne wears symbolizes the change in perception of sin through out the novel. Due to the revelations of the governor Winthrop and the reverend Dimmesdale, the way sin is perceived changes from one of shame to the idea that every one is a sinner in their own right....   [tags: sin, religion, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Scarlet Letter]

Good Essays
878 words (2.5 pages)

Hypocrisy in Hawthorne's Scarlet Letter Essay

- Hypocrisy in Hawthorne's Scarlet Letter Hypocrisy, often seen as one of the vilest manifestations of the human ego, is also one of the most inevitable and foreseeable. It is the simplest, and yet one of the most intricate aspects of being human. We all wish to judge and not be judged, for our own voice is always the strongest in our mind. Hypocrisy runs rampant in daily life; all one has to do is turn on the television set at our convenience to be forced to consider the meanings and implications of our own actions....   [tags: Hawthorne Scarlet Letter Essays]

Good Essays
931 words (2.7 pages)

Nathaniel Hawthorne's The Scarlet Letter Essay

- In Nathaniel Hawthorne's The Scarlet Letter, the Puritan community banned all forms of sin. Sin was looked upon as evil, being connected to the devil and his dark ways. Hester Prynne, the main character of the story, was shunned by the rest of the Puritan world after committing the sin of adultery. She lived in a world where it was not accepted. She was isolated from the world around her, having little hope. Throughout the novel, symbols such as the character of the kind woman, the wild rose bush outside of the prison doors and the character of Pearl, Hester Prynne's illegitimate child, are used to show that even in a world full of sin and darkness, there is always hope....   [tags: Scarlet Letter Nathaniel Hawthorne]

Free Essays
940 words (2.7 pages)

Evil is In the Eyes of the Beholder: "The Scarlet Letter", by Nathaniel Hawthorne

- In society there are always two kinds of people, good people and bad people. The good people, the teachers pets who always do everything right. They follow the rules and always think of others. Then, you have to bad people, the trouble makers who always do the wrong thing. They break the rules and do things their way. Everyone is classified in one group or the other, and is always thought to be good or bad. In the novel, The Scarlet Letter, by Nathaniel Hawthorne, Pearl is evil. Pearl is doomed from the beginning to be evil....   [tags: Scarlet Letter, Nathaniel Hawthorne, characters, e]

Good Essays
1604 words (4.6 pages)

Essay about The Mysterious Forest in Nathaniel Hawthorne's The Scarlet Letter

- The Mysterious Forest in Nathaniel Hawthorne's The Scarlet Letter      In Nathaniel Hawthorne's The Scarlet Letter, life is centered around a rigid Puritan society. In this society, people are not allowed to express their true thoughts and feelings. Every human being needs the opportunity to express how they truly feel; otherwise the emotions become bottled up until they begin to hurt the person. Unfortunately, the puritans were not allowed this type of expression. Luckily, at least for the four main characters, Hawthorne has created a forest to give them shelter....   [tags: The Scarlet Letter Nathaniel Hawthorne]

Good Essays
1006 words (2.9 pages)

Essay Metamorphosis of the Letter A in Hawthorne's The Scarlet Letter

- The Metamorphosis of “A” in The Scarlet Letter Six Works Cited In Nathaniel Hawthorne's The Scarlet Letter, the meaning of the letter "A" changes throughout the novel. This change is significant as it indicates the personal growth of the characters as well as the enlightenment of the townspeople. When the novel begins, the letter "A" is a symbol of sin. As the story progresses the “A” slowly transforms to a symbol of Hester’s strength and ability. By the end of the novel, the letter “A” has undergone a complete metamorphisis and represents the respect that Hester has for herself....   [tags: Scarlet Letter essays]

Free Essays
796 words (2.3 pages)

Revenge in Hawthorne's The Scarlet Letter Essays

- The Scarlet Letter: Revenge Revenge is the act of retaliating in order to get even with someone for the wrongs they have done. In the novel “The Scarlet Letter,” the author, Nathaniel Hawthorne, uses Roger Chillingworth to reap revenge on Arthur Dimmesdale for his affair with his wife, Hester Prynne. Chillingworth becomes so devoted to revenge that is all his life revolves around. Chillingworth then devotes the rest of his life to taking revenge on Dimmesdale. As the novel progressed, Chillingworth fits the profile of ‘vengeance destroys the avenger’....   [tags: Scarlet Letter essays]

Good Essays
895 words (2.6 pages)

The Scarlet Letter: A Symbolic Narrative Essay

- The Scarlet Letter: A Symbolic Narrative After reading any sort of book or story, the reader may sit back and think about how the book was written. For example, one may look at the style, genre, and origins of the book. In this case, after reading The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne, I took a look back at how this great author created such a great work of literature that we still read some 160 years later. What I found was that this is simply a piece of well-written, mind enhancing symbolic fiction....   [tags: Hawthorne Scarlet Letter]

Free Essays
1126 words (3.2 pages)