The Demise of Roger Chillingworth Essay

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Hawthorne used symbolism to represent how various human behaviors would impact life. He took these behaviors to the extreme to emphasize their influence in the situation of adultery. Roger Chillingworth had the role of the villain in this story. "Although he was originally the only character without a problem or a sin, he became the one who performed the worst sins of all.”₂ He transformed into the embodiment of vengeance, Hawthorne further amplified this persona by portraying him as an expert in all things alchemical. For the reader, this imparts a subconscious relationship to the occult. Chillingworth makes a believable, if not exaggerated, character in this novel. The man introduced as Roger Chillingworth was an intelligent, …show more content…
He did, however, feel that the man that destroyed his dream had wronged them both. When Hester refused to tell him who her lover was, he realized that he had lost her in a much deeper sense. He became obsessed with knowing this man, although he was still willing to allow heaven to seek it's own retribution. Roger Chillingworth was the obvious victim at this point, but his actions were already foreshadowing a development from the desire for knowledge to vengeance. Chillingworth said that his closest connections either through love or hate were Hester, her lover, and their child, Pearl. He felt that this made his home wherever they were and dedicated his life to knowing who her lover was. He stated “I shall seek this man, as I have sought truth in books: as I have sought gold in alchemy.₁” Chillingworth spent the next seven years befriending Reverend Arthur Dimmesdale, the father of Hester’s baby, and hardly left his side. He obviously had unconfirmed suspicions that Dimmesdale was Pearl’s father. The two men met on an intellectual level, one a man of science and the other a man of the cloth, both trying to understand the order of the universe. Chillingworth began to head further from seeking knowledge and closer to a sadistic revenge. Chillingworth used this friendship and Dimmesdale's

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