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Puritan Citizen In The Scarlet Letter By Nathaniel Hawthorne

Decent Essays
Throughout the novel The Scarlet Letter, Nathaniel Hawthorne develops compelling characters that are starkly different from the normal Puritan citizen. The novel mainly focuses on Hester, a Puritan woman living in New England, and the story of her affair and how it affects her life and the lives of those around her. Puritan citizens are illustrated as stern, dreary characters, but Hawthorne brings up sin, love, and hate even in the characters who are seemingly the most rigid when it comes to Puritan lifestyle. Chillingworth, Hester, and Pearl of the novel The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne display complex character traits, including admiration, honesty, and loneliness. Hester's daughter, Pearl, has distinct characteristics that make her a major character in this novel. In the text, Hawthorne reveals that Pearl feels isolated from society, and has to go through any struggles in her life alone. "The singularity lay in the hostile feelings with which the child regarded…show more content…
Although Hester deeply betrayed Chillingworth with her affair, he still admires her and the love he felt for her in the past still lingers with him. "Thou hadst great elements. Peradventure, hadst thou met earlier with a better love than mine, this evil had not been. I pity thee, for the good that has been wasted in thy nature!" (Hawthorne 157). Chillingworth admires Hester for her great qualities. He says that she could have met a better man and lived a better life if this sin and evil had not taken place and can see that her good qualities were wasted when she married him. As a result, Chillingworth empathizes with her because the attributes he loved about her have transformed due to her punishment- physically and mentally. Chillingworth still loves and admires Hester's good qualities, but understands why she fell in love with another
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