Her strength along with her Christian charity turns Hester from someone to be scorned into someone who is admired. She acknowledges her sin as her own, and she offers up the matter of her repentance to God rather than the townspeople. This indicates that he will likely be a main character.
The minister calls on her to give him strength to overcome his indecisiveness twice in the forest and again as he faces his confession on Election Day. She could no longer borrow from the future to help her through the present. Intuitively, the girl understands that Hester wears the A for the same reason that Dimmesdale places his hand over his heart.
That thou shalt never know! Note that the narrator calls this "witchcraft": In Chapter 4, when he interviews her in the jail, she firmly says, "Ask me not! By acknowledging her, he gives her a human father and a place in the world.
In this scene, however, Hester is the only other person who knows this, and Pearl speaks to her father, unaware of his true identity. No friend, no companion, no foot crossed the threshold of her cottage. Prynne was suspected of having been killed by Native Americans and thus was not recognized by anyone but Hester.
Notwithstanding, Dimmesdale allowing Hester to withstand public humiliation alone is a far greater betrayal, one for which he pays a grave price.
He makes her promise not to reveal his true identity and assumes the name Roger Chillingworth. Following the interrogation, Hester and Prynne meet in private, where the two apologize for their respective offenses Hester for her adultery and Prynne for his long absence, as well as for marrying such a young, vital woman—and at his age.
While Dimmesdale dies after his public confession and Chillingworth dies consumed by his own hatred and revenge, Hester lives on, quietly, and becomes something of a legend in the colony of Boston. The child could not be made amenable to rules.
Okay, she does have the advantage of knowing that he and her mom have secret meetings in the woods, but, come on, the girl is only seven years old when this happens. The Reverend delivers a moving sermon that week, following which he reveals the scarlet letter on his chest.
Meanwhile, her daughter, Pearl, grows from an infant to a lovely, vibrant, peculiar little girl. They have weaknesses and they both overcome weakness through suffering--the former outwardly, the latter inwardly.
Her beautiful hair is hidden under her cap, her beauty and warmth are gone, buried under the burden of the elaborate scarlet letter on her bosom.
Hester, on the other hand, returns years later and lives the rest of her days bearing the mark of the scarlet letter. Pearl fashions a green letter A out of grass. While not a Puritan herself, Hester looks to Arthur Dimmesdale for comfort and spiritual guidance.
Finally, Hester becomes an angel of mercy who eventually lives out her life as a figure of compassion in the community.The Scarlet Letter study guide contains a biography of Nathaniel Hawthorne, literature essays, a complete e-text, quiz questions, major themes, characters, and a full summary and analysis.
The Scarlet Letter characters include Hester Prynne, Pearl, Roger Chillingworth, and Arthur Dimmesdale as well as some minor characters. Read an analysis of the characters and how suffering causes character growth.
The Scarlet Letter Homework Help Questions.
In The Scarlet Letter, why is Pearl often compared to an elf? An important part of Pearl's character is the way that she is developed as being somehow.
The irony is present in the elaborate needlework of the scarlet letter. There are "fantastic flourishes of gold-thread," and the letter is ornately decorative, significantly beyond the colony's laws that call for somber, unadorned attire.
(read full character analysis) The Narrator The unnamed narrator is inspired to write The Scarlet Letter after discovering the scarlet letter and fragments of its story in an attic of the Custom House. Yet also like the scarlet letter, Pearl becomes Hester's source of strength.
Pearl defines Hester's identity and purpose and gives Hester a companion to love. Although she often struggles to understand Pearl's rebelliousness and devilish spirit, Hester never wavers in her loving devotion to Pearl.Download