Review Of ' Upon Returning From The Forest '

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Upon returning from the forest, everything appears different to DImmesdale. Hester saddened and Pearl celebrating his departure, Dimmesdale encounters various people on his way back to his studies. Firstly, he encounters a church elder, whom Dimmesdale, “by the most careful self-control...could refrain from uttering certain blasphemous suggestions that rose into his mind, respecting the communion-supper.” (149) Second, Dimmesdale met an elderly widow, “poor...lonely, and with a heart as full of reminiscences about her dead husband and children, and her dead friends of long ago.” (149) Normally, this woman would be comforted with religious consolations, but Dimmesdale, “as the great enemy of souls would have it, could recall no text of…show more content…
Realizing his horrid thoughts, Dimmesdale claimed to have “yielded himself with a deliberate choice, as he had never done before, to what he knew was a deadly sin. And the infectious poison of that sin had been thus rapidly diffused throughout his moral system. It had stupefied all blessed impulses, and awakened into vivid life the whole brotherhood of bad ones. Scorn, bitterness, unprovoked malignity, gratuitous desire of ill, ridicule of whatever was good and holy, all awoke, to tempt even while the frightened him…[His old] self was gone! Another man had returned out of the forest; a wiser one; with knowledge of hidden mysteries which the simplicity of the former never could have reached. A bitter kind of knowledge.” (152-153) Following this conversation with himself, Roger Chillingworth enters Dimmesdale’s study in hopes of administering more “aid” in preparation for his upcoming Election Sermon. Dimmesdale respectfully declines his offer, but Chillingworth persists. Suspicious, the narrator describes Chillingworth’s reaction: “All this time, Roger Chillingworth was looking at the minister with the grave and intent regard of a physician towards his patient. But, in man’s knowledge, or, at least, his confident suspicion, with respect to his own interview with Hester Prynne. The physician knew, then, that, in the minister’s regard, he was no longer a trust friend, but his bitterest enemy.” (153) Chillingworth realizes that Hester broke their vow and that DImmesdale
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