Analysis Of Nathaniel Hawthorne's Of Plymouth Hill

717 Words 3 Pages
In “The May-Pole of Merry Mount,” Nathaniel Hawthorne displays a different view of the Merry Mount people, than which was earlier described by William Bradford. In the 17th century Bradford wrote an autobiography about Merry Mount, while two centuries later, Hawthorne decided to write a fictional story about Merry Mount. Though each writing is great, they each have their own view on how the people acted and how the activities took place at Merry Mount. Hawthorne’s analysis of this event varies from Bradford’s in that Hawthorne is trying to tell a story, shows the maypole as not just an object, but as a symbol also, and he tends to take the middle ground of the two sides. Throughout Of Plymouth Plantation, Bradford’s motives are to observe …show more content…
Bradford takes the pilgrim’s side and looks on to the Merry Mount people as if they are horrible creatures when they had celebrations. He displays this distaste by writing, “They also set up a maypole, drinking and dancing about it many days together, inviting the Indian women, for their consorts, dancing and frisking together, like so many fairies, or furies rather, and worse practices” (87). However, Hawthorne decides to take the middle ground. He gives readers the pros and cons of each group. Hawthorne first explains that celebrations are fun, but that life is not always a party even though the Merry Mount citizens think it is. An example is, “From the moment that they truly loved, they had subjected themselves to earth’s doom of care, and sorrow, and troubled joy, and had no more a home at Merry Mount” (631). Secondly, he shows that the Pilgrims may have been strict, but that they also had compassion. For instance Hawthorne states, “Yet the deepening twilight could not altogether conceal, that the iron man was softened; he smiled, at the fair spectacle of early love; he almost sighed, for the inevitable blight of early hopes” (635). Historical interpretation can destroy or make the ideas that readers have about historical topics. Nathaniel Hawthorne and William Bradford have both interpreted the Merry Mount people and events that took place with a different view and perspective.

Related Documents