A narcissistic personality often causes turmoil, with the ever-present black hole of self-importance potentially manifesting into an abusive relationship. In The Scarlet Letter, a novel by Nathaniel Hawthorne, a narcissistic personality is seen in the character of Dimmesdale, the reverend in the Puritan town of 17th century Boston, and secret lover of Hester Prynne. Hester, having given birth to a child out of wedlock, is forced to wear the letter “A” on her chest as punishment for her adultery. She is ceaselessly insulted and ostracized by the other Puritans for the rest of her time in the town. Meanwhile, Hester refuses to reveal who her lover is and thus, Dimmesdale is able to maintain his facade of a pure and holy reverend.
The Scarlet Letter In The Scarlet Letter by Daniel Hawthorne many villainous acts occur that contribute to the plot and direction of the text. One antagonist in the novel is Chillingworth, the “departed” husband of Hester Prynne. Chillingworth and his constant mission to gain his wife's love and to reveal the father with whom Hester's baby was conceived by leads him to take some villainous actions. Chillingworth took many actions to obtain his goals, examples of this are constantly exemplified throughout the novel, one example is Chillingworth’s unrelenting hatred towards Dimmesdale.
Nathaniel Hawthorne uses a multitude of imagery and symbolism to serve as metaphors for different themes in his novel The Scarlet Letter. The theme sin versus guilt, appears often throughout the novel. It is often accompanied by the symbol of the scarlet letter, serving as a constant reminder of the guilt each of the main characters carry, as a result of the sins they have committed. Hester Prynne, Roger Chillingworth and Arthur Dimmesdale each carry the burden of living a tainted life, being that they have all committed a sin. Hester and Dimmesdale both committed the ultimate sin of adultery.
Following Dimmesdale’s death, “all [of Chillingworth 's] strength and energy… and intellectual force seemed at once to desert him… and almost vanished from mortal sight” (Hawthorne 212), as his own death quickly proceeds within a year. When the source of evil that he leeches off of disappears, Chillingworth’s life begins to disintegrate, as he lacks further purpose to survive due to his loss of humanity. His obsession with obtaining revenge eventually forces him to lose control of his own fate, as it becomes dependent on Dimmesdale’s actions. Since Chillingworth devoted his life to seeking revenge on Dimmesdale, without a mortal target, his existence becomes meaningless. In an effort to assert control and prolong his own life, Chillingworth tries to terminate Dimmesdale’s public confession.
The Scarlet Letter Essay Roger Chillingworth and Arthur Dimmesdale were two of the main sinners in The Scarlet Letter. Both characters kept their sins secrete throughout the story. These sins included adultery, revenge, and even murder. Out of the two sinners, Chillingworth was the worst, because he never felt guilt for the terrible things he was doing. Dimmesdale spent his entire life in guilt and remorse for the sins he had committed (“Who”).
The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne, chapters fourteen through twenty-four, concludes the novel with astonishment. Due to previous events, Hester is forced to wear a scarlet letter as a form of punishment but surprisingly, with time, she begins to be respected and admired by society. Later, we realize that chillingworth is plotting against Dimmesdale and should be stopped. Hester and dimmesdale have a meet at the woods where things get rather intimate. After the meet on the woods events occur which lead to dimmesdale’s death but also his release from guilt. It is no surprise that at last Hester gets her happy ending.
Dimmesdale and Chillingworth both have secrets that make them look and act differently, their secrets affect their character and how they do their job. Dimmesdale is the father of Pearl but he doesn 't want to face the same humiliation as Hester did for his sins. Because of his secret he self punishes and fasts, he also preaches better than he did before although his health is failing. Chillingworth’s secret is that he was the husband of Hester while he was away, before she cheated on him. Chillingworth gets uglier and uglier driven by the need to get revenge on Pearl’s father. Both characters affect others and their own lives good and bad because of the secrets they keep.
The Hidden Sin and The Revealed Sin As humans, we live in the that are brimming with sins and evil desire. As the creator of all the creatures, God, sent his only son to save the people from the control of devil. The only thing we have to do is to acknowledge our mistake. Bible teach us that we should tell the truth to God and your neighbors, and God will forgive you. But people are worse, they not only hide the sin and their evil behaviors but also try to deny it.
“And the infectious poison of that sin had been thus rapidly diffused throughout his moral system” (Hawthorne 174). In The Scarlet Letter, Dimmesdale serves as the holiest person many people meet in their moral lifetime, and as the purest embodiment of God’s word. However, Dimmesdale has a wounding secret, a cancer, that tears his soul apart throughout his time in America. Dimmesdale falls prey to sin in a moment of passion with Hester, resulting in her condemnation by the townspeople, and the birth of their child, Pearl. For years, Dimmesdale’s life is defined by an internal conflict - his job demands his purity in the eye of the townspeople, but he desires the acceptance of herself that Hester achieves through her sin being made public. His
Chillingsworth works day in and day out making Dimmesdale sick with work that people will find out what he had done. It's so bad that Dimmesdale starts to do self harm. Chillingworth even goes about so that hester knows what she had done was wrong too and he makes her life like she is walking on
They both attempt to put plans to action that are hateful and deceitful, Abigail with trying to curse Elizabeth, and Chillingworth with torturing Dimmesdale. However, Abigail is jealous of elizabeth for getting to keep John, while Chillingsworth is angry at dimmesdale for having the affair. Throughout both stories the two characters are both act evil but it has come from their
Dimmesdale and Hester suffers because of the sin they did. Dimmesdale feels guilt even though he never confesses that he is the farther. He would go to the scaffold at night and stand there screaming trying to get the people to come outside to see him but it was just all in his head when she would stand on the scaffold during the day with the red A on her chest she felt guilt even though she would not tell anyone who the farther is and for having an affair while her husband was missing for years. For example, Dimmesdale does not want to confess about his sin because he does not want to face the consequences. This is illustrated when Dimmesdale says, “then and there before the judgment-seat, thy mother and thou, and I must stand together” (Dimmesdale 139). Dimmesdale does
Luke Chilton Mrs. Hogg AP English 3 January 2017 Module Eight Lesson Three Mastery Assignment: The Scarlet Letter Chapter 9-12 In the novel, Mr. Chillingworth suggests that it would be a good idea for Chillingworth and Dimmesdale to lodge in the same house. When the Reverend Dimmesdale tells his congregation the he is the worst of all sinners, the congregation becomes fussy and very upset over the fact that he has been a liar and a hypocrite.
Dimmesdale’s True Colors Reverend Arthur Dimmesdale, also the father of Hester’s child, showed prominent parts of his character throughout the story. The first trait the reader becomes aware of is Dimmesdale’s cowardice. He has no intentions of revealing his sin to the public, due to how highly he is seen in the community’s eyes. Remorse, or guilt, is another term that can be associated with Dimmesdale, growing increasingly more prominent as the novel goes on. Cowardice, a lacking of bravery when facing danger, was a trait that Dimmesdale carried.