The Crucible, written by Arthur Miller, is a play that takes place in 1692-1693 during the famous but tragic witch trials. Reverend Hale, a minister and expert of the demonic arts and witchcraft, is sent from East Hanover, Massachusetts to Salem because of a spreading fear of witchcraft. When Hale arrives in Salem he finds the entire town in total chaos. In the beginning, Reverend Hale is adamant in his belief that there were witches and that nothing but good could come out of his being there.
In The Crucible, Reverend Hale undergoes a complete change in his presence through his actions, the words he speaks and the perception of the people in Salem, which results in a notable difference from the man that he used to be. Reverend Hale’s actions changed many times throughout the story. “He is asked to come to Salem by Reverend Parris. ” (Miller 1140) Reverend Hale was brought there to figure out what was wrong with Betty, and to hunt witches.
“He checks on Betty to see why she will not wake up. (Miller 1149) Reverend Hale declares Betty and a group of girls as possessing witchcraft because he believed the girls’ stories about being bewitched. “Once the people in Salem hear the news, they became outrageous. ” (Miller 1155) The people immediately started a trail to hunt down the witches. Reverend Hale goes around, and studies the accused people. When in court, if the person accused did not confess, they knew they would be hung. The group of girls started blaming more people, and the whole court and town believed their stories.
The trial continues on, and many people were hung because of the stories that were told to Reverend Hale. In The Crucible, Reverend Hale was called to Salem by Reverend Parris. His beliefs changed many times throughout the story. “He has studied demonology his whole life” (Bly). He was known as an expert on witches. “Hale brought many books with him” (Miller 11). These books contained many of the studies Reverend Hale had conducted. The studies were not fully accurate, but he did not doubt them.
After he declared Betty and the girls as using witchcraft, he follows his strict beliefs, and influences the girls to tell him more about the people coming into contact with the devil. After hearing the stories about the devil, he set out to find him. While he was searching, many people were put on trial. “There is a turning point in the story, when Reverend Hale finds out that the stories the girls had told him were a lie“ (Bly). The girls were trying to cover up their own foolishness by blaming other people. Some of the people, who had been tried before Reverend Hale found out the girls were lying, had already been hung.
Reverend Hale tried his best to get the court to change the rules, and to stop the rest of the hangings. The court never did listen to Reverend Hale, but kept on believing the girls because they were just children. Toward the end of the play, Reverend Hale begged John Proctor to go in front of the court and confess his adultery with one of the girls named Abigail. John confessed to his sins, but his wife Elizabeth was then brought before the court. She tried to protect him, so he would not be in trouble, but the court already knew about the adultery.
One of the girls blamed John for being the devil so he would be locked up until the date of his hanging. Reverend Hale tried to get John Proctor to confess about committing witchcraft, but he never would. He was hung at the end of the story. Reverend Hale was hurt that he had not been able to help him. Through out this whole play, Reverend Hale’s character changes many times. He goes from being very strict with the rules to caring about the people charged with witchcraft. “In the play, he is know as someone who knows his stuff about hunting witches (GCSE).
Cite this The Crucible – Arthur Miller
The Crucible – Arthur Miller. (2017, Jan 08). Retrieved from https://graduateway.com/the-crucible-arthur-miller/