Symbolism in "The Scarlet Letter"

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From fairy tales to mythologies, fables to romance to even the simplest short stories of a third grader’s book, almost all of them often comprise a scheme of Heroes vs. Villains, and Good vs. Evil. Similarly, The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne also contains many of the same situations and characters with their own symbolic meanings that allow them to express strong and demanding feelings through the symbols that they carry. Hester Prynne, whom appears as a sinful woman, a shame to the society, is created to represent the goodness of the story. Ironically, her husband, Chillingworth, who initially appears to be an intelligent and honorable man, is created to symbolize a daemonic evil. He is symbolic of the hidden sin and immorality…show more content…
Stuck with the path he had chosen, Chillingworth’s character slowly started to decompose throughout the novel as he turned his life into an endless obsession of vengeance. Once he decided to pursue Hester's lover and execute revenge, Chillingworth turned himself into a leech living off of Dimmesdale, gradually blemishing Dimmesdale’s physical as well as mental states as he willingly opened up to Chillingworth and confided almost everything to him even though his troubled heart and soul objected otherwise. Avenging on Dimmesdale quickly became his solely living motive, and with no human compassion, Chillingworth “dug into the poor cleargyman’s heart like a miner searching for gold” (125), exercising his powers over the minister’s heart and soul with great passion and enthusiasm as the minister slowly corrupted before his very eyes. After seven years of pursuing revenge, Chillingworth evolved from “a man thoughtful for others, craving little for himself — kind, true, just and of constant, if not warm affections” (169) into a man with blackness in his visage and a red light showing out his eyes as the devil’s fire burned within his soul. He had become such a parasitic fiend that his very existence was dependent on Dimmesdale. As Dimmesdale climbed up to the

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