In life there are leaders and there are followers. This fact was true during the witch hunts of Salem, Massachusetts. After one person used witch craft as a way to get revenge on their enemies others soon joined in. In Arthur Miller's play The Crucible the leader was Abigail Williams. Her traumatic childhood turned her into a resentful and vindictive person who valued nothing but her own life.
In the play we learn that Abigail is in the care of her uncle, Reverend Parris, due to the death of her parents. In the Reverend's house Abigail lived a very unhappy childhood. She was unloved, unwanted, and unnoticed. This is obvious when the Reverend says children should be "thankful for being permitted to walk straight, eyes slightly lowered, arms at the sides, and mouths shut until bidden to speak" (Page 4). Due to the life she lived Abigail learned to always look after herself and no one else.
Her care of self preservation and lack of feelings for others is obvious when Abigail and the other young girls of Salem have been caught dancing. So out of fear of punishment Abigail began to accuse others in the community of witchcraft. She said that the "witches" of the community had forced her to "dance with the devil." Then to make sure none of the other girls would contradict her story, she threatened them. Abigail stated, "now look you. All of you. We danced. And Tituba conjured Ruth Putnam's dead sisters. And that is all. Let either of you breathe a word. About the other things, and I will come to you in the black of some terrible night and I will bring a pointy reckoning that will shudder you". (1044) This shows that Abigail is willing to hurt and manipulate others just to save herself. And this is how the witch hunt began.
Suddenly everyone was claiming they knew of others doing witchcraft in order to get revenge on those who got in their way. Abigail was no exception. Abigail was in love with a man named John Proctor.