Abigail Williams The Crucible

573 Words3 Pages
Abigail Williams was historically quite different from how she was depicted in The Crucible and yet her character remained faithful to the original. The real Abigail Williams was only a child of eleven years old at the time of the Salem Witch Trials, not a teenage girl seeking revenge in order to be with the man that she loves (“About Abigail Williams”). Williams was likely an orphan as she lived with her uncle. Not much is known about her parents or how she came to live with Reverend Parris (“The “Afflicted””). Her lack of a stable two parent home may have contributed to her psychological need for attention and her role as the foremost of the “targeted” and “harassed” accusing girls.…show more content…
The girls soon began to bring in other girls to play with them, curious to see what their social status could be (“The “Afflicted””). The notorious Salem Witch Trials began when Abigail, Betty, and others became ill and Dr William Griggs diagnosed the girls of being under a dark hold (Yost). The girls began to accuse older, more vulnerable, women of intoxicating them with dark magic. Williams herself filed a total of 41 complaints accusing others of witchcraft, testified in seven cases, and was involved in seventeen capital cases (Yost). Abigail moved on from accusing the lowly outcasts of Puritan society to the more influential and respected men and women. She, with the help of other girls, accused Rebecca Nurse, Martha Corey, and John Proctor of harassing and tempting her with the Devil’s book (Yost). Only a few people challenged Abigail’s accusations of the higher class. A man named Joseph Hutchinson claimed that Williams had told him that she had the ability speak with the devil as just as easily as she could with him (“About Abigail Williams”). The Court of Oyer and Terminer accepted spectral evidence meaning that any little statement could mean certain death to the accused if they did not confess (“Salem Witch Trials”). This allowed the hysteria to easily take over the
Open Document