What Are The Similarities Between The Crucible And The Scarlet Letter

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Two men of close age that live in towns with similar religious values have a secret that can ruin their reputation. One is a minister that has earned great respect from his town while the other has built up his family name by working hard and being an honest, good natured man. In comparing John Proctor from Arthur Miller’s The Crucible and Arthur Dimmesdale from Nathaniel Hawthorne’s The Scarlet Letter the two men appear exceptionally similar since they both commit adultery, both are tormented out of jealousy, and both hide their secret until they are overcome with guilt.
John Proctor and Reverend Dimmesdale both have an affair but one is out of love while the other out of lust. John’s wife was ill when he had the affair with Abigail, his servant …show more content…

Reverend Dimmesdale’s physical condition diminishes the longer he keeps his sin a secret. He feels so guilty, he tortures himself by fasting and whipping in addition to feeling like a hypocrite when his gives sermons. Reverend Dimmesdale expresses, “Happy are you, Hester, that wear the scarlet letter openly upon your bosom! Mine burns in secret!” (Hawthorne 107). He tells her she is lucky that she feels no remorse even while wearing a symbol that stands for her sin, meanwhile he is holding himself accountable which is effecting his health. He worked himself up so much that once he confessed to the town, he died a few minutes later. On a different spectrum, John Proctor’s guilt troubles him mentally since he is sitting in a jail cell with nothing but his thoughts. When the court says he may confess to witchcraft to save his life, he refuses to sign the document, “Because it is my name! Because I cannot have another in my life. Because I am not worth the dust on the feet of them that hang! How may I live without my name? I have given you my soul, leave me my name!” (Miller). He thinks too much about guilt and reputation while in jail that he would rather die than blacken his name. The domino effect of events from the affair, to fixing a relationship and guilt, to confessing lead to death for Arthur and

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