The Crucible Reverend Hale Character Analysis

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Rachel Morpeth Honors American Lit- 2 Ms. Story December 1, 2009 Reverend Benevolent Reverend Hale is perhaps the most complex and dynamic character in Arthur Miller’s The Crucible. At the start of the play Hale is summoned from East Hanover to Salem when fear and rumors of witchcraft have just begun to spread. He is an expert in the demonic arts and is adamant in his belief that he will bring nothing but sanity and righteousness to Salem. However, as the story evolves, Hale finds himself caught up in the mass hysteria that he helped to create. Hale’s purpose, contributions, and conflicts in the play are all much more profound than what may appear on the surface and significantly impose on his one hundred eighty degree character spin.…show more content…
When Hale first arrives in Salem, he enjoys fairly exercising the authority he is so readily bestowed with. He placed his faith in the court and believed they had only the best intentions to lessen the chaos happening in Salem. Had Hale continued with this naïve and ignorant manner, the court probably would have won out over the people. After visiting John and Elizabeth and the encounter with the poppet, Hale begins to question the court’s proceedings. When the judges attempt to accuse Proctor because he had plowed on Sunday, Hale curiously says, “Your Honor, I cannot think you may judge the man on such evidence.” He realizes the court’s methods are peculiar and not very justifiable. The end of Act Three is a major turning point in the play as well as in Hale’s character. The girls are feigning an attack by Mary Warren and Hale comes to realize the girls have been playing everyone the entire time. He becomes so frustrated with the court that he decides to quit. It was an audacious move for Hale to leave Salem, but even more so for him to return. He feels incredibly guilty for having signed off so many people to their deaths, saying, “There is blood on my head! Can you not see the blood on my head!!” While Hale’s return to Salem may not have saved John Proctor and Rebecca Nurse, he encouraged people to…show more content…
The Reverend Parris’s daughter is ailing, perhaps cursed by the Devil who seems to haunt this town. I have yet to find a bruise of hell upon her, but I have been here a mere short while, so only time shall tell. I fear this town has been tainted with evil, and I pray to the dear Lord that East Hanover will remain safe even with my absence. However, I am hesitant to conceive that these witch condemnations are factual to such an extent. The girls in Salem are a peculiar crowd. I fret to believe this chaos is simply a matter of blood running hot and an attempt to seek vengeance upon others. As the poor Betty laid in her bed, the girls began to pronounce such profound accusations. I have seen the Devil’s work, and while he can feast upon whoever he desires, he is not typically so casual in his methods. And Abigail! What a reckless child she appears to be! She seems to believe she is God’s finger, though only one so holy as Mr. Parris or myself could be selected for such a

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