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The Scarlet Letter

             In Nathaniel Hawthorne's The Scarlet Letter, he uses many symbols that tie into the character's lives. Hester has the scarlet letter as punishment of her sin. Dimmesdale has the meteor as his own mark of shame. They both have Pearl as the end result of their sin. Sin is intertwined with all of the characters in the book and the symbols used to represent them.
             Hester Prynne, the town's seamstress, committed adultery and for her punishment she has to wear the scarlet letter. The "A" stands for her sin, but as the people come to know her over the years, they think of the "A" as her being able, able to overcome her sin. The scarlet letter becomes something known to Pearl. When Hester takes the letter off, Pearl doesn't recognize her own mother. Hester then knows that she can never escape the letter. .
             Pearl is a main character, but she is so much more than that. She becomes the living version of the scarlet letter. Pearl stands for the sin Hester committed. She gives Hester the will to live and keeps her away from the temptation of evil. Pearl is tied to the scarlet letter especially when Pearl makes herself an "A" out of seaweed (p.163). Pearl knows that there is a connection between Hester and Dimmesdale, and she believes that it has to do with the scarlet letter. At the end of the story, when Dimmesdale lets everyone know that he is the father of Pearl, then she becomes complete.
             Dimmesdale, the town's minister, looks up in the sky and sees a red "A" formed by a meteor. Dimmesdale feels that the "A" was sent to be known as his own scarlet letter. Earlier, Governor Winthrop had past away and the Puritan community thought the "A" stood for "angel" letting them know that he is in Heaven with God. Winthrop and Dimmesdale are both intertwined with the meteor for opposite reasons. Pearl sees a figure in the distance watching them. It is Chillingworth, Hester's husband, and he discovers the bond that Hester, Dimmesdale, and Pearl share by the "A" in the sky.

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