Hidden Names In The Scarlet Letter Essay

873 Words 4 Pages
“No man for any considerable period can wear one face to himself and another to the multitude, without finally getting bewildered as to which may be the true”- (Nathaniel Hawthorne). Throughout the book, characters in the novel possess names that correspond to their personalities and/or actions. However, many of the character's personalities or actions are hidden. These hidden meanings serve as symbols for the reader to help understand the complexity of their illusioned- public persona. In The Scarlet Letter, the significance of their names adds to the melancholy of the plot. The chosen names help the reader connect to the hidden personalities the Puritan society can not see. In Nathaniel Hawthorne's novel The Scarlet Letter, the significance of the names is important to the reason behind each event within the plot.
The definition of dim is not to have as much light, be unclear or weak. The minister’s life starts to breakdown when he starts to “gasp for breath, and clutch at his heart” (Hawthorne p. 174). Dimmesdale gets progressively depressed throughout the book, relating to the idea of the definition of dim. Without the satisfaction
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Hawthorne uses these names to symbolize the real personalities behind them. Dimmesdale, Chillingworth, and Pearl are all given these names to show the connection between the characters and their personas. Pearl leads to the idea of Dimmesdale being “dim.” Dimmesdale and Pearl lead to the idea of Chillingworth turning “chill.” This furthermore emphasizes the chain of events characterizing the people in the book. These events ruin these characters to some degree and force the true meaning behind their names to finally be exposed. Yet the reader knows because having a different outside appearance fools them, leading to the non-existent happy ending of their lives. They let the secret ruin them. No one says it better

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