Sin In The Minister's Black Veil

1955 Words8 Pages
What is sin? How does sin affect people? Why is sin such an important, but terrifying topic? In many of Hawthorne’s stories he addresses these question as he tells his readers stories of men and women affected by sin. Some of them are remorseful, while others simply see sin as another action that might not be as acceptable. The characters in Hawthorne’s stories depict an image of sin through their actions of remorsefulness or of terror. However, contradictory to what one may think these characters are all from different stories that Hawthorne wrote. Hawthorne also does not focus on sin itself in one form, he shows his audience the entire realm of sin and what it can look like. This blatant exposure to sin allows his readers to understand the…show more content…
In “The Minister’s Black Veil”, the audience is introduced to Reverend Hooper. He is the town’s minister and he is what they all look at when it comes to spiritual matters. He is their role model and he represents godliness because he is supposed to be the one that sets the spiritual standard for his congregation. One day, Reverend Hooper surprises the town by walking outside wearing a black veil that covered his face. This action shocked the townspeople because they did not know what it meant for their beloved pastor to be wearing such a frightening piece of clothing. The veil covered about half of the 30 year old pastor’s face allowing only his mouth and chin to be seen. The townspeople speculated about what the vail mean . Some said he wore it because he had mutilated his face, some thought that he had gone crazy, still others thought that he was protecting his eyes from the sunlight. None of these speculations were correct. The true reason that the minister wore the veil was because he had a hidden sin. The black veil represented his shame and guilt that he had because of his sin that he had hidden from his congregation. Reverend Hooper wore the veil all the time in public, even when he was giving sermons, all because of his hidden sin. The first sermon that Reverend Hooper give to his congregation after putting on the black referenced the secret sin of man many times. The townspeople did not pick up on these references other than the fact that they were different from Reverend Hooper’s usual sermons. Many of the people of the congregation thought that their reverend had figured out what each person struggled with and they thought that he was going to call them out on it. At the conclusion of the sermon the people practically run out of their gathering place. This is significant because it represents what man does when he is confronted with sin. Man’s sinful
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