Bloodthirsty Revenge In Nathaniel Hawthorne's 'The Scarlet Letter'

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Inhyeok (Daniel) Lee Mr. Soldi CP English III October 17, 2014 Bloodthirsty Revenge portrayed through Roger Chillingworth In his novel Scarlet Letter, Nathaniel Hawthorne utilizes several allegories throughout the story. Allegory is a literary technique that Hawthorne uses to connect the characters with symbolic presences. It gradually builds up the tension between characters, and also arouses curiosity of readers. Furthermore, allegory strongly reveals the defect of the Puritan society and imperfection of all human beings by exposing abysmal agonies of each allegorical character coming from their intrinsic limits. Roger Chillingworth, the husband of Hester Prynne, is a good example of an allegorical character that shows the corruption …show more content…

Hester bitterly announces hatred toward her once-beloved man, Roger Chillingworth, as she says, “Yes! I hate him! ... He betrayed me! He has done me worse wrong than I did him!” (154). Roger Chillingworth, in effort to dismantle Dimmesdale’s life, has continuously lost social wealth for the seven revengeful years. Most importantly, he put incredible concentration on revenge that he even lost his once-beloved wife. In fact, Chillingworth not only lost the love of Hester, but also gained hatred from Hester. In the end, Roger Chillingworth is worth nothing more than a social outcast who lost true and peaceful relationships with people, and even obtained hatred from his own wife. Through this allegory, Hawthorne teaches his readers that revengeful purpose in life can drive oneself out of the healthy social life. Nathaniel Hawthorne, through the allegory of Chillingworth’s life in Scarlet Letter, rendered the conception that vindictive life can be a melancholy. Compulsion with revenge only led Chillingworth to emotional corruption, hauled away various elements of life, raised anger, and drove him away from relationships with people. After all, would it be a wise determination to live with, or even possess, a spiteful mind preoccupied with revenge? The immediate answer has to be,

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