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Annotated Bibliography 'The Crucible'

Paper Type: Free Essay Subject: English Literature
Wordcount: 1219 words Published: 9th May 2017

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The Crucible is a classic play written by Arthur Miller, there were many characters, along with a unique storyline. There were twenty characters in the book that played separate but important roles throughout. First there were the tree protagonists in the book, John Proctor, Abigail Williams, and Reverend Hale. John Proctor was a nearby farmer who has great pride, and values his reputation greatly. He was having an affair with Abigail Williams, his servant that was fired after she was found having an affair with him. He refused to expose the relationship between them two because of his emphasis on his pride and reputation. Second character was Abigail Williams, she was the old servant of the Proctor home, and was also jealous of John’s wife. She throughout the book she was cunning, devious, and often was violent if she was to be instigated. The final main character was Reverend Hale; he was supposedly an expert on witchcraft. He is a heroic character who late in the book tries to save the life of those who were wrongfully accused. There were also many characters in the book that played a small but important role, such as John Procter’s wife Elizabeth. She was the one who discovered that John was having an affair with Abigail. Then there was Reverend Parris, he was pretty much insane. Lots of people around the town did not like him. Another character was Rebecca Nurse, she was the wife of a rich man that was smart but was wrongfully accused. The husband of Rebecca Nurse was Francis Nurse; he was a very wealthy man and was liked by many. Judge Danforth was another character; he was the judge at the witch trials. Giles Corey is the husband of one of the accused witches, he was also a farmer. Thomas Putnam was a very devious character; he used the witch trails to increase his wealth. Thomas’s wife Ann had eight children altogether but seven of them died, the only one left was Ruth Putnam who was caught dancing in the woods. Then there was Tituba, she was a black slave who was convinced by Abigail to help her in her shenanigans. Then there were Mary Warren and Mercy Lewis who were part of Abigail’s group. Betty Paris was the daughter of Reverend Parris, when she fell ill it led to the first beliefs of witchcraft. Lastly there was Herrick who was simply just he marshal of the town.

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The Crucible basically started off with Parris praying, he had paranoia and was believing the fact that his daughter had been a victim of witchcraft which was a major topic at the time. He blames Abigail, his niece for taking her out dancing where Tituba, was waving her arms around and saying weird things. When Abigail is confronted with the problem she denies everything and says that Betty was really scared when they got caught. At this point Thomas Putnam enters the story in which he says that he had seen Betty flying over a neighbor’s barn. Thomas Putnam’s wife, as it is told, had seven children who had all died in a threshold of a day of being born. Mrs. Putnam blames this on witchcraft and urges Ruth to go talk to Tituba about finding who the murderer of the children was. Abigail then tells the Mary about what is going and tells Mary and Betty not to tell the whole truth about the whole blood and Elizabeth thing. After this John Proctor arrives at the home of Reverend Parris, he is a local farmer and he tells Mary to go home because he forbade her from leaving the home. He talks to Abigail and Abigail insults John’s wife, who angers him, he threatens to whip Abigail. Next, the song going up to Jesus is being played and Betty runs away, so Mrs. Putnam concludes that Betty is also bewitched. Rebecca is introduced and says that the kids are just throwing a fit. Onwards from this John Proctor gets in a prolonged argument with Parris which concludes in them fighting about John not attending church and John says that he doesn’t like what he preaches about most of the time. Parris says that John has no right to speak against his authority and they don’t live in a town of Quakers. This argument leads to another one about land ownership and after being irritated Parris threatens to sue him. Reverend Hale is now introduced with him being a very smart man. Giles, a farmer who is disliked in Salem talks about his wife Martha who was reading strange books, he asked Hale about it and Hale blows it off. Abigail still keeps denying almost everything that went on that night, also Parris claims seeing a pot like thing on the ground that night. This leads to Tituba being brought in due to accusations made by Abigail and they both turn on each other. Tituba says that it is not her that is bewitching the children; she claims that the devil has many witches working under him. Tituba makes up a story about how she has seen the devil and she has been told to kill Parris multiple times, she even claimed that the devil made a deal that stated that she would get her freedom and she would get to go back to her native land. Mrs. Putnam believed what Tituba had said and it lead to the marshal being called. In the end of Act I, Hale tells the marshal to lock the accused witches up. At the beginning of act two, John is shown lets Mary go to several of the witch trials, but she broke Elizabeth’s rule while doing so. Due to the wrong doings of Abigail and the others if they did not come forth, fourteen people would be executed. Proctor in the meanwhile does not believe anything that is going on, he didn’t believe in witchcraft in the first place. Reverend Hale stops by John’s home and tells him to recite the Ten Commandments, because he had doubts about the Proctor home. Proctor, after Elizabeth’s constant nagging, goes to tell Hale that the sickness of the children was not to be blamed on the supernatural. Later the marshal’s come with a warrant for the arrest of Elizabeth Proctor, and John Proctor loses his temper and tells Mary to come forward, but she claims that Abigail will kill her if she does so. At the beginning of act III, after Proctor’s persuasion to Mary, she chose to testify. John is questioned even more due to the fact that he did attend church regularly. After this Giles and Putnam get in an argument and Giles makes accusations of Putnam about the fact that he instigated his daughter to wrongfully accuse George Jacobs. Abigail was brought into question again and as before she denied all of the accusations made towards her, and she made counter accusations toward Mary when cold wind came through, that she had “bewitched” the court to make it happen. Proctor decides to tell the court about his affair, Elizabeth is also being questioned for why she fired Abigail, but the Proctor’s tell the court conflicting stories. At the end of act three Abigail is yelling at Mary for sending spirits at her. At the beginning of the act IV the town is wreaking havoc, there was absolutely no control and everybody was in fear of being accused. Also, Proctor is confessing, which makes some happy, but he only agreed to give his own sins. Proctor is thinks about a long time about signing the confession because it would be nailed to the church door. Elizabeth decides that what John was doing was right and lets him do so.


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