The Empty Vessel Scarlet Letter Essay Research — страница 2

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mine,- neither will she recognize my voice or aspect as a father’s. Administer this draught, therefore, whit thine own hand.” (66) Chillingworth is taking out his hatred for Hester on Pearl, making him less attractive to readers. Chillingworth’s feelings are understandable, however, since Pearl is the physical manifestation of his emasculation. Chillingworth at the end of the book surprises the reader by giving his fortune to Pearl, however, leaving the reader baffled. While towards the end of the book Chillingworth becomes less and less likable, his final act of kindness towards Pearl leaves the reader confused as to what the real character of Chillingworth is. The most intriguing relationship in the book is the one between Dimmesdale and Chillingworth. Upon first

knowledge that Hester had an affair, Chillingworth is consumed by finding the identity of the father. Dimmesdale, a beacon of morality in an uptight moral community, is hiding his secret right next to Chillingworth. Chillingworth already had gathered that Dimmesdale was the father, and had proceeded to torture Dimmesdale until he cracked. When Dimmesdale fell ill and Chillingworth became his physician, Chillingworth was given access to Dimmesdale when he was at his weakest. Chillingworth is obsessed with obtaining Dimmesdale’s confession, even waiting by Dimmesdale’s bedside in vain trying to get a confession from Dimmesdale. When Dimmesdale refuses to confess his sins to a mortal, Chillingworth is even more motivated to gain Dimmesdale’s confession. Dimmesdale resists

Chillingworth’s advances until finally, on the scaffold, he confesses his sins before his impending death. Chillingworth seeks glory for finally obtaining the object of his obsession, but Dimmesdale does not let him revel in it. “‘Thou hast escaped me!’ he repeated more than once. ‘Thou has escaped me!’ ‘My God forgive thee!’ said the minister. ‘Thou, too, hast deeply sinned!’”(221) Chillingworth is finally castigated for his self-righteous crusade. Dimmesdale’s statement is telling of how blindly Chillingworth’s rage injured those around him. Chillingworth dedicated himself to the destruction of Dimmesdale, and in the process Chillingworth lost his humanity. Dimmesdale is absolved of his sins at the end of his life, but Chillingworth’s soul is

saturated with hate, his heart black. He lives the rest of his days in a state that is worth living through. Chillingworth is a lost, tortured soul. Chillingworth is not a man who holds the emotions of others in high regard, and that is why he ends up alone and unhappy at the end of the book. Chillingworth drives away his wife, and accelerates Dimmesdale’s physical decay. Chillingworth never learns how to love anyone, and he never loved himself. He never was upset because Hester broke a sacred trust, but because her absconding of their vows was one more example to invalidate Chillingworth’s existence. Chillingworth finally realizes the error of his ways at the end of the novel, and that why he leaves all of his property to Pearl. Chillingworth becomes aware of the vast

emptiness of his soul, and how he has been torturing others to avoid dealing with his own tortured soul. Chillingworth attacked two people who loved each other, so he tries to make amends by helping the product of this love. Chillingworth dies a lonely man, but becomes righteous in the end. Bibliography Hawthorne, Nathaniel “The Scarlet Letter,” Penguin Books (1986)