Pearl Character Analysis in The Scarlet Letter | LitCharts
Dimmesdale's sermon concerns the relationship between God and man, especially of forgiveness and are often presented in paintings and poetry as pearls. Her relationship with her secret lover, the Reverend Arthur Dimmesdale, and her love for their daughter, Pearl, show how full of love Hester truly is. In this novel. Though Pearl's relationship with the physical universe is idyllic, she is saved from a life of isolation from society by Dimmesdale's ultimate confession of paternity.
The only truth that continued to give Mr. Dimmesdale a real existence on this earth was the anguish in his inmost soul" Chapter 11, pg. Ye have both been here before, but I was not with you. Come up hither once again, and we will stand all three together! But, indeed, he was blind and foolish, as he ever and always is. A pure hand needs no glove to cover it! For as our good Governor Winthrop was made an angel this past night, it was doubtless held fit that there should be some notice thereof.
They said that it meant Able; so strong was Hester Prynne, with a woman's strength. Were I worthy to be quit of it, it would fall away of its own nature, or be transformed into something that should speak a different purport.
Who made me so?
Why has thou not avenged thyself on me? It runs away and hides itself, because it is afraid of something on your bosom. There it is, playing a good way off.
Stand you here, and let me run and catch it. I am but a child. It will not flee from me, for I wear nothing on my bosom yet! It will soon be gone. Is there such a Black Man? And didst thou ever meet him? And is this his mark? Why did I not understand? O Hester Prynne, thou little, little knowest all the horror of this thing!
Woman, woman, thou art accountable for this! I cannot forgive thee! A crimson flush was glowing on her cheek, that had been long so pale.
And in the deep forest, where only the old trees can hear, and the strip of sky see it, he talks with thee, sitting on a heap of moss! And he kisses my forehead, too, so that the little brook would hardly wash it off! But here, in the sunny day, and among all the people, he knows us not; nor must we know him! A strange, sad man is he, with his hand always over his heart!
Yet, if the clergyman were rightly viewed, his strength seemed not of the body Dimmesdale even heard the music [of the procession]. It seemed hardly the face of a man alive, with such a deathlike hue; it was hardly a man with life in him that tottered on his path so nervelessly, yet tottered, and did not fall!
The Scarlet Letter Quotes
Methinks thou art too late! With God's help, I shall escape thee now! A spell was broken. The great scene of grief, in which the wild infant bore a party, had developed all her sympathies; and as her tears fell upon her father's cheek, they were the pledge that she would grow up amid human joy and sorrow, nor forever do battle with the world, but be a woman in it.
Towards her mother, too, Pearl's errand as a messenger of anguish was all fulfilled. The law was broke! No one welcome them.
Hostile environment surrounds her.
Chillingworth begins to suspect that Dimmesdale is Pearl's father when Reverend Wilson and Governor Billingham are trying to take Pearl away from Hester. Dimmesdale gives an eloquent representation for Hester, and Chillingworth says "You speak, my friend, with a strange earnestness" It is with this suspicion that Chillingworth begins to show "special interest" in Dimmesdale. When Chillingworth first appears in the community he is well received.
The town needs a doctor and the members of the town feel that it is an act of God that he arrives when Reverend Dimmesdale is becoming ill. The fact that Chillingworth shows a special interest in Dimmesdale helps his acceptance in the community, but the community did not know his intentions. Chillingworth's quest is to find out if his suspicion is, in fact, reality.
Quotes from The Scarlet Letter
In order to find this out, he must get closer to Dimmesdale: While living together, Chillingworth constantly digs for Dimmesdale to release his secret, but he will not reveal it, and his condition becomes worse. Finally, Chillingworth catches Dimmesdale sleeping and thrust aside the vestment to discover the letter "A" upon his chest. With no doubt in Chillingworth's mind about Dimmesdale's relation to Pearl, his torment toward him increases. Chillingworth is now in complete control of Dimmesdale, whose health is deteriorating.
Hester notices the deterioration of Dimmesdale's health, and she thinks that her faithfulness, in keeping Chillingworth's identity a secret, is to blame. When she goes to Chillingworth and speaks to him about revealing his identity, he neither condones nor condemns her decision.
While listening to the old man, she noticed how much he had changed over the past seven years. This new knowledge does not free Dimmesdale of Chillingworth's control.
But he need not have taken the trouble of doing so because the minister has in the meanwhile made up his mind to make a public confession of his guilt.