The reason the witch trials began in the first place was because of the lie she told about being in the woods. She didn’t want to tell the truth about what happened in the woods to the adults because she wanted to protect herself. She manipulated the young girls to lie and say they were only dancing, “And mark this. Let either of you breathe a word, or the edge of a word, about the other things, and I will come to you in the black of some terrible night and I will bring a pointy reckoning that will shudder you”(Miller).
Abigail Williams is the woman that started it all by telling the other girls to lie about dancing in the woods. Because of that, I do not believe she acts like a traditional Puritan woman should. One reason Abigail did not act like traditional Puritan women was because she danced in the woods. Abigail herself states that anyone caught dancing will be whipped. When her uncles caught the girls in the woods dancing by the fire, Abigail did not mention they were saying boys' names wishing they could marry them.
During Act 1 Mary attempted to be righteous, by trying to get Abigail to confess about what the dancing in the forest. She doesn’t want to be hanged for witchcraft and breaks down to the point Abigail smashes her across the face. Mary claims that they’ll “only be whipped for dancing’.” (Miller 18).“Abby, we’ve got to tell. Witchery’s a hangin’ error’.” (Miller 18). Mary was afraid of Abigail Williams and didn’t tell the truth fearing that Abigail would hurt her.
As a result, many are hung, as they would not confess to consorting with the devil and performing witchcraft. Abigail even goes as far as stabbing herself with a needle to support her claim that “[Proctor’s] wife’s familiar spirit pushed it in” (Miller 74) in the second act. In addition, when Proctor, in defense of his wife, attempts to reveal the truth behind Abigail’s accusation, she manages to bend what she had done onto Proctor, which convinces the judge—Danforth—to convict him. At the end while Proctor is executed, Abigail manages to leave the town with her uncle’s money, showing that she successfully defeated the protagonist by exploiting weaknesses and channeling her
Betty Parris’s great power throughout Act I can be seen by her ability to single handedly create chaos and hysteria within the town for her own personal gain. Her power can first be viewed after Susanna Walcott explains the possibility of a supernatural cause to Betty’s illness, leading Abigail to advise her Uncle about “the rumor of witchcraft [that] is all about: [She] thinks [he 'd] best go down and deny it [himself]. The parlor’s packed with people,sir” (10). This is the first hint that others in the town believe in the presence and of the beginnings of the hysteria that follows. Betty started this rumor in the town by pretending to act sick so that she would not get punished for dancing in the woods.
Later on it is revealed that Abigail was laughing at her own amusement and this had nothing to do with witchcraft. Abigail also uses Tituba as a scapegoat early on in the story. When Abigail was accused of conjuring up spirits in the forest when she was dancing, she accuses Tituba of forcing them. Tituba didn’t force or invite them to join her. Abigail says that Tituba forced her to dance with her, causing them to take Tituba to trial of Witchcraft.
So when an opportunity to get rid of Elizabeth comes up in the form of power to accuse people of witchcraft, Abigail jumps at the chance. John sees Abigail’s intentions and portrays this when he says “she thinks to dance with me on my wife’s grave,” in a confession to Judge Danforth about his relationship with Abigail (Miller, 110). Not only did Abigail want John Proctor all to herself, but also she was concerned about people finding out what she actually was doing in the woods with Tituba and the other girls. It is revealed early on in the play that Abigail cares about her reputation, for example, when she was concerned that Elizabeth was “blackening [her] name in the village” (Miller, 23). If people found out Abigail were trying to put a hex on Elizabeth Proctor in the woods, then sooner or later the truth about John and
Like Abigail utterly told liars about how Elizabeth spirit had stabbed her at the dinner table but actually Abigail framed Goody Proctor with the doll Mary Warren had made as evidence to stable herself. Also Abigail accused Mary Warren for working with the devil in the setting of act three in the courtroom. The girls in courtroom acted as if Mary spirit was attacking them ,to scare her back to their side. Giles Corey also accused Thomas Putnam for being gluttonous for more land and therefore accusing his neighbors for it. The indictment of witchcraft are lies told in statements as if death is a game to play with.
Though Abby wasn’t the only one who was caught, she lied to Reverend Parris so that she would not be hung once witchcraft was being talked about throughout the village. She threatens the other girls to not tell the truth about what truly was happening in the woods. “... We danced. And Tituba conjured Ruth Putnam’s dead sisters. And that is
She caused proctor to cheat on his wife and then eventually causes Proctor to die. And she and other girls had to go to court because they lied about doing the witchcraft. She cannot excuse or pardoned because the outside forces “made” her the way she is because the forces are not going to change her. If Abigail wouldn’t of danced in the woods then she wouldn’t of caused the bad things to happen. I think that if she
Tituba also afraid of facing consequences blames someone else. This blaming caused a domino affect, all started by Abigail Williams. In act one in The Crucible, Abigail Williams was the person for creating disorderly witchcraft in Salem. Abigail lied about herself to stay away from punishment, Betty also revealed that Abigail was partaking in
However, I believe Abigail should be held responsible for the imprisonment and execution of innocent people because she threaten the girls, so they would act bewitched and she also lied about getting stabbed by a needle and making it look like as if Elizabeth Proctor did it with witchcraft. To begin with, Abigail had control over the rest of the girls who were also caught dancing in the woods. The girls, after the incident in the woods, lied along with Abigail. Whatever lie Abigail came up with, the girls would support it. Even in court, Abigail had the support of the girls when she claim to have seen a yellow bird.
Aside from that, people accused others of being witches or having something to do with witchcraft if they had a grudge against them or needed something. People were able to accuse others of being witches for having too much land or for owning too many cattle. Witch trials were not only a way to get rid of the Devil, but also a way to get rid of people that you disliked. In the case of The Crucible, the witch trials began because of religious beliefs and the fear that Lucifer was controlling the children of Salem. To get out of trouble during the witch trials, those who were accused simply just accused others to be seen as innocent and avoid execution.