Scarlet Letter Brook Quotes

524 Words3 Pages

The Righteous Brook Nathaniel Hawthorne’s The Scarlet Letter is a complex story, each page having a deeper meaning than shown. One of those symbols is the brook. The brook represents the boundary between truth and falsity. Only Pearl interacts with the brook, but her attitude towards it affects her mother and father. It is made clear early in the novel that Pearl is the symbol of Hester and Dimmesdale's conscience. This symbol is the key to understanding the meaning of the brook. As chapter fourteen begins, we find Pearl playing in the brook while Chillingworth tells Hester how the townspeople wish to remove her scarlet letter. Hester dismisses the notion. Hester explains, “It lies not in the pleasure of the magistrates to take off this badge… Were I worthy to be quit of it, it would fall away of its own nature,”(Hawthorne 176). Pearl, who signifies Hester's inner voice, is playing in the brook while her mother accepts the scarlet letter. Towards the end of chapter nineteen after Hester removes her scarlet letter by throwing it by the edge of …show more content…

Once Pearl goes in the water and kisses Hester or Dimmesdale, they will realize and accept their sins. When Hester and Dimmesdale reject their sin they are simultaneously rejecting Pearl. The young girl knows this and she becomes scared and hurt when they do this. Towards the end of chapter sixteen Pearl questions why the brook is sad. This is written off as the child's imagination because a physical thing such as a brook can not feel emotions like sadness, but the brook is sensing Dimmesdale's pain. Meanwhile Dimmesdale is walking in the woods when he comes across Hester and Pearl, but he does not notice them; he can not see because there is a surrounding fog. Pearl fears that Dimmesdale is the black man despite seeing who it was, the child does not recognize him because he has not accepted his sin, therefore he has not accepted

Open Document