Comparison of Abigail Williams and Elizabeth Proctor in Miller's The Crucible The Crucible is play that helps to show human nature through a series of events linked through the Salem witch trials. In this play, a group of young teenagers would undermine the religious government and make a mockery of the Salem judicial system. Miller also shows human nature through the development of characters. Abigail Williams and Elizabeth Proctor are foils of each other and have many differences; they would also develop many similar traits.
From 1692 to 1693 a series of terrible trials occurred, These trials consisted of accusations of witchcraft. Today, these trials are known as the Salem Witch Trials. As a result of these trials, 19 citizens, 14 women, 5 men, and even one dog were put to death. The play, The Crucible, was written by Arthur Miller in 1952. In this play the characters have so many different characteristics from each other. Abigail is seen as a bad person while John Proctor is seen as the good and honest character; even though he made some bad decisions.Throughout the play the two characters Abigail and John Proctor show many differences in the characteristics of: lying/truthfulness, self-sacrifice/selfishness, and fear/courage.
Elizabeth is also strong and courageous. When John is accused of witchcraft, Elizabeth is willing to follow along with the decision John decides about whether he wants to confess or not. She knows if he confesses he will be living a lie and if he tells the truth, he will be put to death. Although the decision John makes will affect Elizabeth and she wants John alive, she is courageous towards John by showing her support and love. Elizabeth knows she must put her opinions to the side and John must construct this decision on his own. Elizabeth states, “I cannot judge you, John, I cannot” (Miller). Elizabeth is also strong because she was falsely accused by Abigail and
Throughout the play we see instances where Abigail shows she still has feelings for John saying things like “ Give me a word, John. A soft word.”, but she is only met with rejection from John “ No, no, Abby. That’s done with.”. (Miller 22) as he has moved on and is trying to live a more righteous life. Even though John has made his intentions clear Abby continuously attempts to sway him “...do you tell me you’ve never looked up at my window?” (Miller 23) believing he will still come back to her. After still facing rejection from John, Abigail believes the only reason he denies her is because of his wife. Knowing that she has the power to condemn people by accusing them of witchcraft, Abigail decides that it is the only option she has to be with John. As time goes on the Proctor family is torn apart when Cheever, a clerk of the court, comes with a warrant for Elizabeth. The Proctor’s find out the reason for the arrest is because of attempted murder through the use of witchcraft. It is to our understanding that a poppet that is in the possession of Elizabeth, given to her by their servant, Mary, was used to attempt to murder Abigail . As the situation goes on we discover the entire ordeal was an elaborate plan by Abigail when Mary says “...she saw me sewin’ it in court. Or better still: Ask Abby, Abby sat beside me when I made it.” revealing that it was a plan by Abigail. Abigail saw Mary making a poppet for Elizabeth and came to the realization that it would probably be her best chance to get Elizabeth out of the picture. By placing blame on Elizabeth, Abigail is able to further her own personal goal of being with
Arthur Miller’s The Crucible presents Elizabeth Proctor and Abigail Williams who serve important roles through their unique characteristics and thinking. John Proctor’s wife, Elizabeth, has two defining characteristics that show throughout this play: she not only lives to please everyone around her and behaves passively, but she lacks the assertiveness to confront what lies directly under her nose. However, Abigail, the girl John Proctor commits the crime of adultery with, manipulates those around her. She is keen to act upon an opportunity when one arises and feels a determination to get her way. While Elizabeth and Abigail are similar in their love for John Proctor, Elizabeth differs from Abigail through her tendency to try to please everyone and keep her own emotions bottled up, while Abigail believes the world revolves around her and works to make things go her own way.
Essay Topic 3: Arthur Miller uses foils to provide striking contrasts between two characters. Select at least one pair of foils and analyze specific character traits of these persona that link to major themes in the crucible. “Thou shall not suffer a witch to live,” (Exodus 22:18) was an Old Testament
Abigail is a highly jealous character, concentrating her jealousy on Elizabeth Proctor. This jealousy is driven by lust and her desire for John Proctor. Abigail served as a servant in the Proctor household and after an affair with her husband John, Elizabeth fired her. She still resents Elizabeth for this as she is still in love with John. She clearly says to John, "You loved me, John Proctor, and whatever sin it is, you love me yet!" Abigail is still in love with John and she assumes the converse. Her love for John only causes her resentment for Elizabeth to strengthen. She hates John Proctor's wife and in her conniving ways she attempts to inspire the same views of Elizabeth in John's mind. Saying things to him such as, "She is blackening my name in the village! She is telling lies about me, She is a cold, sniveling woman." Abigail fabricates stories in attempt to steel John from Elizabeth. She is a manipulative liar that does and says as she pleases in order to get what she wants.
“You’re Honor, I-in that time I were sick. And I- My husband is a good and righteous man. He is never drunk as some are, nor wastin’ his time at the shovelboard, but always at his work. But in my sickness” (III.410-426).Even though he cheated in her with Abigail she is strong enough to lie for him. Her growth is also evident in the end of the play because Elizabeth shows tremendous courage and integrity letting go of John to. “He have his goodness now. God forbid I take it from him!”(IV.207-208). Elizabeth understood John’s motive and that took tremendous bravery for her to allow him to be get his redemption and be hanged. She now has the role of taking care of her and financially supporting her
After having an affair with John Proctor, she couldn’t accept not being without him. Abigail also admires “how such a strong man may let such a sickly wife” like Elizabeth be unaware of the affair she had with John Proctor(act1pg#). As a result to the affair, Proctor is trying to rebuild his marriage with his wife. Abigail continues to intervene in John Proctors marriage and attempts to manipulate Proctor so he would confess his love for her. Proctor admits his love for her, but does not continue his affection because Abigail seeps of vengeance for other individuals. He portrays her “as a lump of vanity” who thinks to dance on his “wife’s grave!”(act 3). For her own selfish desires, Abigail accuses Elizabeth of witchcraft and tries to intentionally sabotage her. She does this for the purpose of her own selfish and fictitious relationship that she has with Proctor. Abigail believes she has the capability to influence Proctor, but her egoistic actions to win his undefining love makes her appear as the criminal in the
Elizabeth never liked Abigail Because she knew there was something going on between John and Abby. Elizabeth “dismissed” her to avoid any more conflict. John kept seeing Abigail during the night behind his wife's back. Elizabeth has never lies. At the end of the play, she lies to save John, her husband's life.
Argumentatively, Abigail is an adulterer looking for retribution against her lover’s wife, but underneath that her actions are narcissistic. The abundant need for self-preservation becomes obvious when presented with evidence from the beginning of the play. Abigail depicts these characteristics when asked about Elizabeth Proctor’s departure from church services and Abigail’s own displacement from Elizabeth’s home, “She hates me, uncle, she must, for I would not be her slave. It’s a bitter woman, a lying, cold, sniveling woman, and I will not work for such a woman!” (Miller 12). She refuses to acknowledge that her own actions are wrongful and places blame on others, “My name is good in the
First and foremost, Abigail is obsessive. Evidence for this is shown when she refuses to believe that her relationship with John Proctor is over. In a heated argument she openly states, “You love me John Proctor, and whatever sin it is, you love me yet!”(Miller 146). Not only does this statement prove she is head over heels for John but that she does not care at all that he has a wife. She even tries to guilt the poor man into continuing the love affair. Abigail tries to get Elizabeth out of the picture by falsely accusing her of witchcraft, so she can have John to herself.
The witch trials were a very interesting part of the early 1600’s. The Crucible written by Arthur Miller was written for the time period 1620. He wrote this play for the purpose of displaying communism and showing the red scare that was happening to his community in the 1950s. He wanted to show the similarities of the two time periods. He wanted to show that what happened in the salem trials was happening with the communist trials. He took historical accounts from Salem Massachusetts and created characters on what he read. Two characters he wrote about were sweet Mary and a manipulative girl named Abby. Although Mary Warren and Abby in this play, seem different, Mary is a meek and quiet girl while Abigail Williams is an aggressive girl who likes to get her way,they both play a part in why the salem witch trials happened in The Crucible.
Abigail had many flaws throughout the story. One of her flaws includes lust. Abigail was involved in a secret affair with John Proctor, who happened to be married to Elizabeth Proctor. Abigail illustrated lust by telling John, “John- I am waitin’ for you every night.” This suggests that Abigail does have something secret going on with John. Abigail also says, “I know how you clutched my back behind your house and sweated like a stallion whenever I come near!” This justifies that they have a relationship because she told John that he
The Crucible, written by Arthur Miller, there were countless crucial similarities and differences amongst the charters. Abigail Williams and Elizabeth Proctor were characters whose actions for a man molded their reputations. Abigail’s reputation was destroyed while Elizabeth had a positive reputation; they tried intensively to preserve it since they wanted a good name.