Hester Prynne Analysis Hester Prynne is the main character, in addition the protagonist, of book The Scarlet Letter, by Nathaniel Hawthorne. In the book, Hester Prynne’s physical appearance is depicted as being a young and attractive woman. Hester Prynne is depicted as a compassionate woman who submissively deals with the stress and anguish of a sin that was committed prior to the beginning of the story.
Three words that would greatly describe Hester Prynne are strong, partly because Hester Prynne dealt with all the consequences of sin, faithful, towards others and towards God, and forgiving to all of the people who did not necessarily deserve forgiveness. Throughout the book, one can easily determine that Hester Prynne is a very strong woman who fights through all of the hardships that are presented firsthand. The book first starts out by introducing Hester Prynne as an adulterer who, as part of a punishment, has to wear a scarlet letter “A” on at all times.
Hester Prynne first demonstrates personal strength by walking onto the scaffold from the prison cell without shedding one tear and by holding a high head while being the main center of attention in a public place. This was a challenging task for Hester Prynne partly because Pearl, the daughter that resulted from the sin, in her arms, and because of having had to wear the scarlet letter “A” on all clothing, even at this time in front of many onlookers.
Although at the moment it was probably a very difficult task to accomplish, Hester Prynne managed to pull through. Although Hester Prynne displayed weakness after the fact by crying to herself in private, Hester Prynne did not break down in front of everyone. Hester Prynne’s strength is an important characteristic that is exemplified, because Hester Prynne uses this trait to help support Pearl, the daughter of Hester Prynne, and to help pull through the constant awareness of alienation from the other citizens in that town.
Even the people that Hester Prynne aided through charity work often criticized this character for the act of adultery that had been committed. The fact that Hester Prynne is a faithful person is a very prominent and recurring characteristic throughout the book. Hester Prynne started off the book by making a promise to Chillingworth, the former husband, that his identity would not be revealed. No matter what the circumstance was during most of the book, Hester Prynne kept this secret ven though it would have given a great benefit to admit this to everyone. Hester Prynne also kept the secret of whom the father of Pearl was, no matter how many times Hester Prynne was interrogated and threatened. Hester Prynne’s faithfulness played a significant part in the plot of this book. If Hester Prynne had not had faith in God, then there would be no reason for Hester Prynne and Pearl to stay in the town that they were currently residing in.
Hester Prynne came up with this punishment because New England was where the sinful act was committed, and so therefore New England should be the location where the punishment should take place. It is obvious that Hester Prynne has faith in God, and an example of a time when this is demonstrated is when Hester Prynne tells Chillingworth that the “A” cannot be taken away by any human authority, therefore meaning that only God has the power to reprieve Hester Prynne of this sin. Hester Prynne displays a very forgiving persona to many different characters within the book.
Although Hester Prynne deems Chillingworth responsible for the act of adultery that was committed while away, supposedly stuck at sea, Hester Prynne never showed any signs of vengeance towards Chillingworth. Even at the conclusion of the story, Hester Prynne reveals to Chillingworth the sincere feelings that Hester Prynne has done wrong to Chillingworth. Though Hester Prynne had many opportunities to reveal Chillingworth’s true identity, the promise was always kept strong even when Hester Prynne asks permission from Chillingworth to reveal the secret to Dimmesdale.
These are fine examples of Hester Prynne’s forgiving nature. Hester Prynne continuously kept her spirit alive throughout the book, and always looked for different ways to help people, even those who did not deserve the help. The three words that greatly describe Hester Prynne are strong, because Hester Prynne always kept her head up high, faithful towards others and towards God, and forgiving, even when people did not inevitably justify forgiveness. Hester Prynne loved Pearl more than anything, even though Pearl represented the great sin that Hester Prynne committed.