From the Scarlet Letter, Which Character Deserves the Most Sympathy?

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Nakiya Flowers
September 21,2012
HN English 3
Colville
Sympathy Essay

Between the four main characters in “The Scarlet Letter”, Chillingworth deserves the most sympathy. Due to Hester and Dimmesdale’s tryst, Chillingworth began to grow bitter and spiteful. Although Chillingworth had taken a two-year hiatus, he still managed to provide for Hester until his return. Like any human, Chillingworth had feelings, which he showed through out the duration of the story.

“Misshapen from my birth-hour, how could I delude myself with the idea that intellectual gifts might veil physical deformity in a young girls fantasy?” In this quote Robert Chillingworth digresses. He is expressing his feelings to Hester, who he hasn’t seen in two years. Chillingworth believes that he is partly to be blamed for Hester’s cruel infidelity. It is obvious that Hester Prynne did not truly love him, which was a cause of her adultery, but Roger thought that Hester would love him because he was a sage man.

During Chillingworth’s epiphany, he realized that any young woman would not want a man who has a deformity such as his own. Although Chillingworth admits that he had doubts about marrying Hester, he still married her. In the result of his doubt, Chillingworth is left believing that he should have been smart enough to know that Hester would cheat on him.

Chillingworth expected to come home to his “pure” and untouched wife, when in reality she had had an affair and created an illegitimate child out of wedlock. As a result to any form of infidelity, it is possible to be as bitter and spiteful as Chillingworth had felt. Chillingworth was on a mission to seek revenge and find out who created a child with his wife.

In conclusion, Roger Chillingworth deserves some sympathy because he genuinely loved Hester, he thought she loved him, and his expectations were foreshadowed by reality. Chillingworth only wanted to make Hester happy but in return wound up being hurt. Chillingworth’s...
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