The Crucible Assessment
The Crucible takes place during one of the several dark periods of American history. In The Crucible, the justice system of the time was inaccurately portrayed. In Act III, Reverend Hale claims that he has signed seventy-two death warrants close to the end of the Salem Witch Trials: “Excellency, I have signed seventy-two death warrants; I am a minister of the Lord, and I dare not take a life without there be a proof so immaculate no slightest qualm of conscience may doubt it.”(Miller 92). This is not possible as the government setup could not possibly allow it. During the Salem Witch Trials a member of the clergy such as Revered Hale was not allowed to carry out the long arm of the law (judiciary action). The afflicted girls usually gave an indication of the guilt of the accused. The play usually claims that the girls passed out and gave no indicationof moving. In Act III, when Reverend Parris is interrogating Mary Warren in the case of Abigail Williams he has a request: But you did turn cold, did you not? I myself picked you up many times, and your skin were icy” (Miller 98). According to many court papers, the girls did not calmy pass out, they went through extreme convulsions, almost as if having a seizure. This is a second example of falsehood in the judicial system. A third example is the actual court system, according to the play there were only two judges: Danforth and Hathorne. In the introduction to Act III, the setting gives us information about who is presiding in the General Court: “Through the partitioning wall, we can hear a prosecutor’s voice, Judge Hawthorne’s” (Miller77). On the next page, the judge Danforth is then introduced to us as the next judge. In several court papers there were several mentioning of more than just two judges. The full panel of magistrates for the court were in fact named by the new charter, which arrived in Massachusetts on May 14, 1692 were William Stoughton, John Richards, Nathaniel...
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