Honesty in the Crucible

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The phrase “honesty is the best policy,” applies to Arthur Miller’s history-based drama, The Crucible, in a variety of ways. The accusations throughout the story build on lie after lie after lie from those trying to protect their own name, thus putting the whole town in a state of confusion and chaos. Nobody in the small town of Salem, Massachusetts knows whom to trust anymore, after all of the false allegations made. There are three characters in particular in the story that, if they had told the truth from the commencement, the town would have been in a state of peace rather than mayhem. If Abigail Williams, John Proctor, and Elizabeth Proctor had been honest, many innocent lives could have been spared and Salem would not be in such disarray.

Abigail Williams lies many times throughout The Crucible. In Act I, Abigail deceives Reverend Parris by claiming that the reason she was dismissed from working for the Proctors was due to the fact that “She [Elizabeth Proctor] hates me, uncle, he must, for I would not be her slave” (Miller 12). The reality of this statement is that although Abigail claims, “there be no blush upon my name” (Miller 12), Abigail was discharged from her laboring duties because she had a love affair with John Proctor. Abigail continues with this deception throughout the entire story, which later leads to the downfall of many others. Another example of Abigail’s dishonesty is while dancing in the forest one night with other girls, Abigail tried to cast a charm to kill Elizabeth Proctor so she could have John all to herself. When the villagers of Salem received word of this, Abigail quickly denies the accusations of witchcraft by diverting the attention to others by lying and claiming to have seen many people with the devil while in the forest. Another lie Abigail concocts in The Crucible is that Elizabeth Proctor sent her spirit on Abigail and claims “a needle were found stuck into her belly” (Miller 76), when in fact, Abby stuck herself just...
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