House of Seven Gables

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Shelby Syracuse
English 1 Honors
You’re sitting in your room and you are cleaning out all of the old stuff that has piled up over the years. You pick up the beautiful and expensive necklace that your ex gave to you when you were happily dating. You know in your heart you need to let go of but you can’t and all it does is remind of your messy past. The necklace symbolizes your trust and commitment issues that you have today which holds you back from reaching the love you want in life. Much like I n Nathaniel Hawthorne's book The House of Seven Gable's symbolism is eloquently used to enhance the story being told, by giving us a deeper insight into the author's intentions in writing the story. Hawthorne uses many uses of symbolism but the biggest and most obvious one is the house itself. The house symbolizes the dreary past that is holding on to all of the lives of the oncoming generations that live in the house. The book begins by describing the most obvious symbol of the house itself. The house is described as "breathing through the spiracles of one great chimney". Hawthorne uses descriptive lines like this to turn the house into a symbol of the lives that have passed through its halls. The house is like a prison to the family and people who live in are almost like inmates. They are like prisoners who after being jailed for decades return to find a world they do not know. Clifford is deeply saddened when he says, "We are ghosts! We have no right among human beings - no right anywhere, but in this old house.” The house has imprisoned their souls and trapped their lives. Hence, the house symbolizes a prison for its inhabitants. The house also symbolizes the history of the of Pyncheon family dating back to the original Colonel Pyncheon who had been cursed by Matthew Maule for the evil way in which the Colonel obtained the land for the house. The house represents a ton of things: first, it stands in for the Pyncheon family as a whole. The...
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