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The Black Veil Essay

  • Submitted by: mikaylaamber
  • on August 1, 2012
  • Category: English
  • Length: 663 words

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Below is an essay on "The Black Veil" from Anti Essays, your source for research papers, essays, and term paper examples.

Lit Analysis
“The Minister’s Black Veil” By: Nathaniel Hawthorne


      Mr. Hooper was the minister at a church located Milford, a town southwest of Boston.   The short story begins with Mr. Hooper walking into the meetinghouse. Every single person either gave each other an awkward look or had something to say about the black veil that was draped over his face. Every one was shocked to see their minister wearing the thin piece of cloth that covered all but his mouth. The black veil was worn till his last day of life. Although the reason is not revealed in the story, the black veil symbolized a heavy secret as well as sin and guilt because he was punishing himself.
      The minister got into a huge fight with his wife-to-be about the black veil. She believed that of all the people in the village she should be the one to know the reason. She did not want there to be any secrets between them. So with that, in “The Minister’s Black Veil” written by Nathaniel Hawthorne, Mr. Hooper tells her this:
      “Elizabeth, I will,” said he, “so far as my vow may suffer me. Know, then, this veil is a type and a symbol, and I am bound to wear it ever, both in light and in darkness, in solitude and before the gaze of multitudes, and as with strangers, so with my familiar friends. No mortal eye will see it withdrawn. This dismal shade must separate me from the world: even you Elizabeth, can never come behind it!”

He does not give in to her and as a result, she ends up leaving him. Mr. Hooper was left alone through that. That was definitely not what he wanted to happen. But he was faithful to the black veil, which is one reason showing he had guilt. Therefore, punishing himself.
Mr. Hooper having a black veil draped over his face was an overwhelming sight for everyone in the village. Everyone looked at him differently including himself, and it wasn’t in a good way. For example, at a wedding he attended, he saw his own reflection in a mirror and scared himself. He dropped...

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