Symbols In The Scarlet Letter

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Symbols and images can create a deeper meaning to a story. As seen in the novel, The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne, symbols provide meaning to all things such as characters actions and words. In the novel, we follow the three main characters, Hester, Dimmesdale, and Chillingworth, who are struggling the battle of sin and the consequences and struggles that come about. The symbols in the book are really useful to understanding the underlying themes of the text. Throughout the book, we track the symbols of, nature and the black man, Dimmsindales mark and scarlet letter, and Pearl. Nature and The Black man are two symbols with similar interpretations. The forest is a place where Hester is free from judgment. It is a safe haven away from…show more content…
Although differant in some ways, Hester's scarlet letter and Dimmesdales red mark are both symbolic for similar things. Hester's scarlet letter is a tangible A placed beautifully on her chest. It represents her shame for being an adulter. The A physically sets Hester apart from the town. In the beginning Hester wears it because she is told to for punishment, but even after she is allowed to take it off she still wears it. The scarlet letters meaning changes over time from being looked at as able and angel. A description of the A is explained in he text, " On the breast of her gown, I'm fine red cloth surrounded with an elaborate embroidery and fantastic flourishes of gold thread, appeared the letter 'A'. It was so artistically done, and with so much fertility and gorgeous luxuriance of fancy..." (Hawthorne chapter 2). Eventually, the letter holds a deeper meaning of Hester's growth and holiness. She wears it while doing charity work and even still when she is a strong women. ( Quote from chapter 13?) Hester's scarlet letter is a complex symbol through out the entire book, while Dimmesdales red mark, is a bit simpler but has the same basic meaning. It is there for the same reason as Hester's, which is sin. Dimmesdales mark is the physical representation of his guilt. Although he was not forced to wear it as Hester he cannot help it. It shows that Hester is not the only sinner. Dimmesdales
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