This website uses cookies to ensure you have the best experience. Learn more

Abigail Williams In Arthur Miller's The Crucible

2137 words - 9 pages

Abigail in Arthur Miller's The Crucible

"The Crucible" is a play based upon the events that occurred in Salem
circa 1690s. The witch trials were not just in America, but occurred
in Europe too. Arthur Miller wrote this play, and also wrote the
screenplay for the movie based on his play script. This has been
produced in theatres countless times, as it is so dramatic, and
appeals to audiences.

We are introduced to the character of Abigail Williams in the very
first scene. This shows that she is a pivotal character in the play.
She's introduced as the niece of the Reverend of Salem:

"Seventeen, enters - a strikingly beautiful girl, an orphan, with an
endless capacity for dissembling."

Therefore, on the very first page, the readers of the play form an
opinion of Abigail that audiences would not have. The readers of the
play also know that Abigail is an orphan. We also find out that
Abigail has witnessed the bloody murder of her parents, by Native
Americans. We first realise this when Abigail mentions this when she
speaks to "the girls" in Act One.

"I saw Indians smash my dear parents' heads, on the pillow next to
mine."

I believe that Miller mentions Abigail's past on an attempt to get the
audience/readers to sympathise with Abigail. It is as if he informs
the viewers/readers of her traumatic life in order for us to forgive
her, or at least feel sorry for her, so we may excuse the heinous
crimes she later commits in the play.

The fact that Abigail sees such brutality and violence at such a
tender age sets up her basic psychological problems, which may be at
least part of the cause of her problems in Salem.

A reader's initial understanding of Abigail's character is that she
has a particular thirst for attention, as shown by the crying out.
This forms initial dislike for Abigail (from the readers), yet a
different emotion for theatregoers. A reader initially sees the
relationship between Abigail and John as an affair formed from lust.
Both readers and theatregoers see that Abigail has a need for being in
charge of a situation, as seen with Abigail's relationship with "the
girls." Also, Abigail seems to enjoy her relationship with Proctor,
but clearly, he is manipulating her, as in Miller's commentary about
Proctor, it states:

"He was the kind of man - powerful of body, even - tempered, and not
easily led"
====================================================================

If Proctor was not easily led, he, therefore must be the one who has
the upper hand in the relationship. This shows that Abigail needs
stability, and wants someone to take care of her. This is probably an
accurate statement, as she last her parents early in life, and
therefore looks for an older man. This may also be the reason for
having a relationship with someone double her age.

Theatregoers would have a different opinion of Abigail. Firstly, they
would not see Abigail as attention seeking. In Act One, when...

Find Another Essay On Abigail Williams in Arthur Miller's The Crucible

Abigail Williams in The Crucible by Arthur Miller

3389 words - 14 pages Abigail Williams is the troubled niece of Reverend Parris of Salem. She is an orphan; made so by brutal natives who killed her parents before her very eyes. The witch-hunt begins when Abigail is at the age of seventeen. She has a large role in this novel, especially on these dark events and also her relationship with John Proctor. In my opinion from what I have understood from the text she is a tempestuous character. She is initially

Comparison of Abigail Williams and Elizabeth Proctor in Miller's The Crucible

555 words - 2 pages Comparison of Abigail Williams and Elizabeth Proctor in Miller's The Crucible The Crucible is play that helps to show human nature through a series of events linked through the Salem witch trials. In this play, a group of young teenagers would undermine the religious government and make a mockery of the Salem judicial system. Miller also shows human nature through the development of characters. Abigail Williams and Elizabeth Proctor are

The Crucible by Arthur Miller......Elizabeth Proctor vs. Abigail Williams

533 words - 3 pages Elizabeth Proctor and Abigail Williams are two important women in The Crucible. They are basically opposite of each other, which makes their characters vital to the story. Both Elizabeth's and Abigail's roles in the story can be determined by comparing what each women represents, what motivates them, and what they cause in the end.Elizabeth Proctor represents the only thing good left in John Proctor's life. She is an honest women who would never

I Saw Abigail Williams with the Devil in the Crucible by Arthur Miller

731 words - 3 pages Arthur Miller wrote The Crucible as a symbolism for his own failing marriage and the communist hunt in America at this time in his life. However, almost 50 years later, Miller also wrote the screenplay for his movie adaption of the play. Moreover, there were definite changes to scenes, characters, and dialog, between the play and the movie. Miller’s variation to his own play, showcase key differences in Abigail Williams, through his changes in

Abigail Williams in Act One of The Crucible by Arthur Miller

2022 words - 8 pages How Arthur Miller Establishes the Character and Motivation of Abigail Williams in Act One and How She is Not to be Trusted Arthur Miller wrote ‘The Crucible’ in the 1950’s during the Cold War. The play is a study in the mass hysteria which led to the 1692 Salem witchcraft trials. It shows the consequences of being accused as a witch. The reason for a witch hunt is because it is a sign of the devil and in Salem no one is

Compare and Contrast between John proctor, Abigail Williams, Hester Prynne and Arthur Dimmesdale, Of Nathaniel Hawthorne's Scarlet Letter and Arthur Miller's The Crucible

1916 words - 8 pages John Proctor of Arthur Miller's The Crucible, is a highly respected man in Salem. "In Proctor's presence a fool felt his foolisheness instantly....Proctor respected and even feared in Salem", the narrator adds (Miller 20). He was a powerful man who disliked hipocrites and the presence of sin. Before the play begins,John Proctor has an affair with Abigail Williams, a previous house servant of his, these actions contradicted his very own beliefs

Abigail Williams of The Crucible

1248 words - 5 pages eventually ran away with Mercy Lewis. Abigail is cold-hearted and she basically plays the devils character in her town. In this case Abigail was never the victim and she will always be an unforgettable character.   Work Cited Martin, Robert A. "Arthur Miller's The Crucible: Background." Bloom's Literature. Facts On File, Inc. Web. 11 Dec. 2013://www http.fofweb.com/activelink2. Miller, Arthur. The Crucible (Penguin Classics). London: Penguin Classics, 2003. Print. Abbotson, Susan C. W. "The Crucible." Bloom's Literature. Facts On File, Inc. Web. 10 Feb. 2014

Arthur Miller's The Crucible

1647 words - 7 pages Arthur Miller's The Crucible In The Crucible there are many different ways in which Arthur Miller captivates the interest of the audience. These include the reasons for which Arthur Miller wrote the play, and various themes within the play such as love, hate, lies, betrayal, lust and injustice. There is an interest in the nature of the community, the ways in which the law operated and the moral and reasoning behind the

Arthur Miller's The Crucible

1131 words - 5 pages Arthur Miller's The Crucible The Crucible is based on the 'Salem Witch Trials' in 1692. In act 1 the audience find out that John Procter had an affair with Abigail Williams, who was dancing in the woods, and that she still has feelings for him. When John denies their love Abigail starts accusing people of witchcraft. Act 2 is when we meet Elizabeth Procter who gets arrested on suspicion of witchcraft. In act 3 John goes to court

Arthur Miller's The Crucible

694 words - 3 pages As one can see, in Acts I and II of Arthur Miller's "The Crucible", all characters have a dark side, replete with moral weaknesses. These personal faults are manifested in the character's actions and in the intricacies of his inner conflict. John Proctor is a man with many moral weaknesses, the first of which are revealed to the reader in Act I. His most glaring moral fault is his having committed an act of adultery with young

Arthur Miller's The Crucible

859 words - 3 pages Arthur Miller's "The Crucible" 'The Crucible' was written by Arthur Miller. Arthur Miller was brought before a committee in 1956 to answer charges of 'communist sympathy' and to name the people he had had meetings with up to twenty years before. Liberal writer, film directors, actors and actresses were all called before the committee. The committee often had lists of names of people who had attended meetings yet they still forced

Similar Essays

Abigail Williams In Arthur Miller's The Crucible

2198 words - 9 pages Abigail Williams in Arthur Miller's The Crucible Throughout the play “the Crucible,” we see the many different sides of Abigail Williams’ character. Arthur Miller has created an interesting and complex character with various personality traits, and her controlling and manipulative nature becomes evident for the audience during the very first scene. Abigail is first introduced as “seventeen, a strikingly beautiful

Character Study Of Abigail Williams In Arthur Miller's The Crucible

1946 words - 8 pages Character Study of Abigail From Arthur Miller's The Crucible Arthur Miller was inspired to write The Crucible because of what happened in America in the 1950's. Suspicion of witchcraft and an association with the Devil had arisen in the 1600s in Salem, Massachsetts. The allegations and apprehension is comparable with the period of

Abigail Williams In The Crucible By Arthur Miller

687 words - 3 pages In Arthur Miller's play The Crucible Abigail Williams, an unmarried orphan in the Massachusetts town of Salem, incessantly grows more jealous, her desire for vengeance only grows stronger, and her selfishness escalates. She repeatedly lies to save herself by denying her involvement in witchcraft. Abigail's Jealousy of Elizabeth Proctor intensifies in attempt to realize her desire for Elizabeth's husband John Proctor. In order to save

Motivations Of Abigail Williams In The Crucible By Arthur Miller

718 words - 3 pages A motivation can be described as a character having a reason to behave or act in a particular way. Someone or something can be someone's motivation. A child obeys its parents to avoid punishment or a clerk works overtime so that he can afford a better car are examples of motivation. In The Crucible by Arthur Miller, characters illustrate several types of motivations. Throughout the play, Abigail is motivated by jealousy, power, and