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Letter And Symbols In Hester Prynne's The Scarlet Letter

Decent Essays
The author's writing style is very formal. He uses long and elaborate sentences filled with commas. The use of words such as, "edifice" and ignominy" makes the story seem more elegant than a story about a woman who has committed adultery. The author is very descriptive in his sentences, such as,

We have as yet hardly spoken of the infant; that little creature, whose innocent life had sprung, by the inscrutable decree of Providence, a lovely and immortal flower, out of the rank luxuriance of a guilty passion. (74)

He was simply introducing Hester Prynne's young daughter, Pearl. The elaborate language can cause confusion and the sentences seem drawn out, but the author manages to tell the horrid story of a woman shunned because she
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The rose bush mentioned in the beginning of the novel symbolizes the passion of Hester. The author says. "It may serve, let us hope, to symbolize some sweet moral blossom" (42) Roses themselves tend to symbolize romance and love. So, the rosebush mentioned at the beginning is a symbol of Hester's romance, which is of course a sin, and passion for the moment even though the consequence is going to last longer than the rosebush ever could.

Hester Prynne is the main character of the novel, so the story revolves around her life. Hester commits adultery and is punished and shunned by the townspeople for it. She must wear the "scarlet letter" on her clothing as a symbol of her wrongdoing. She proves herself throughout the novel as a mother and person and she proves to the reader that one mistake does not define a person, and the person can overcome any obstacle thrown his or her way.

Pearl, Hester's daughter, helps Hester overcome the hatred and back lash of the people. Pearl also shows the reader that sometimes decisions will carry on from person to person. Pearl

allows Hester to prove that she is a worthy mother and is also a physical reminder of Hester's sin, as if the letter was not enough.

Roger Chillingworth is Hester's husband in disguise. He is taken by Native
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