- wormwood and
- Bitter herbs, so a cup of them would contain the symbolic
bitterness that Hester might be realizing she really felt behind
that marble mask and seeming submissiveness.
- Lord Mayor's
- The procession here is similar to the traditional
inauguration of the Lord Mayor of London, held on November 9.
No doubt many of the customs in the Boston event were derived
from that of English traditions and amusements. This the author
points out gave color to the gray or sable tinge of the
Puritans--even though he draws this picture fairly, most
readers seem to consider that he reported the Puritans as
harsh, severe, and hypocritical. Even though the festivities were
not quite as pagan as earlier English ones had been, they were
not suppressed very much. In this case, the new governor was
another elected official who enjoyed considerable independence
from the king, but he was one of the early Puritans, John
- minstrel, gleeman,
- Hawthorne says that the Puritans were able for this time to
suppress some amusements they thought excessive, such as vulgar
songs or actors playing the fool, and pedlars of false medicines
and so on.
generation next to the early emigrants ...sl21.html#g17
- The next generation was responsible for the witch trials,
but they eventually saw the error of their ways. It is true that
Sunday closing laws and other remnants of Puritanism remain to
control New England society a bit more than in other places.
Hawthorne may have been pointing out that the complacent
materialists of his day needed a little poking fun at, as well as
the stiff Puritans.
- a sort of magic
- These new readers of the scarlet letter are trying to figure
out its significance. One wonders if they thought Hester was part
of the show. Boston by then was big enough so she might have been
a stranger to many. But one also wonders if this is a sly
reference to the author's readers, who always seem to
confuse the person and the person's text. At the time,
Americans were desperately hoping for an American author to
produce some work that could be compared to British books,
and show that American materialism was not death to art. So far
Hawthorne had not succeeded in this task, but this book proved to
be the first one to claim the prize. Hawthorne upon his success
had enough money to leave Salem and Boston and move to the
country in Lenox, Massachusetts, where there were few autograph
hunters and other fans to seek out the shyest author on earth
(he received piles of letters all his life on all sorts of
matters, and did politely answer them).
Summary. From here until the end of the book
we expect you to write your own summaries, following the models
of preceding chapters. E-mail to EricEldred@usa.net
your summary (after reading the chapter carefully). You will
get in return e-mail similar summaries made by others, which you
may then compare with your own to see if you have understood
the chapter. Use "Ch. 21 SL Summary" as the Subject:
Suggested MLA citations to this web page,
HTML code and text.
Use as in ?Help? page citation guide.
Eldred, Eric. <cite>Notes to Ch. 21, The Scarlet
Letter.</cite> <br />
1999. 23 Sep. 1999. <br />
Eldred, Eric. Notes to Ch. 21, The Scarlet
Letter. 1999. 23 Sep. 1999.
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