Greed and personal motives are common in our society today; many people are driven by these vices to the extent that they end up hurting other people around them just to achieve their personal goals. “The Crucible” is a story that depicts how innocent people suffer just because an individual wants to save her reputation. “The Crucible” is a story written by Arthur Miller based on the events that surrounded witch trials of Salem in 1692.
The author highlights how greed and personal motives drive different characters to the extent that innocent people are falsely accused of practicing witchcraft. In the play, Miller uses many characters to point out how those in power cannot determine the truth. Miller uses one main character Abigail to demonstrate what happened in the town of Salem.
During the witchcraft trials events in Salem, citizens were afraid of witchcraft, and anyone perceived to be practicing witchcraft was persecuted. However, other people took advantage of these trials to revenge against people they did not like. Children testimonies were used as evidence during trials. In the play, Miller presents several characters that covered up their acts by accusing innocent people. After reading “The Crucible,” readers may ask who is to blame for these deaths.
According to Arthur Miller, the main character Abigail Williams played a key role in these witch trials in Salem; she enhances the theme of the play. Abigail always wanted her way no matter who she hurts. Throughout the play, she accused innocent people just of achieving her motives. She never cared for anyone except for John Proctor, whom she had an affair with previously.
In the play, the author portrays how Abigail manipulates people to get what she wants; Abigail is the obvious villain in the play. Abigail is manipulative and wants everything to go her way. She covers up her evil acts by pointing at innocent people just to escape being persecuted. She takes advantage of the Salem witch trial to put out all the resentment she had for everyone.
Abigail Williams is a 17-year-old orphan who later becomes the center of events that took place in the small town of Salem. The author portrays Abigail as the protagonist who is very influential in the story. In the story, we learned about the Abigail background being a former servant of Elizabeth and John Proctor. Abigail had an affair with John, and Elizabeth kicked her out after realizing that. Abigail still loves John but John does not want to continue with their affair; Abigail tries all means to win Johns love, including accusing John’s wife of witchcraft.
Initially, Abigail is first introduced as a beautiful but a dominant figure that is malicious and manipulative. She uses her power to her advantage, to cause harm to those who got in her way. Her vengeful desires become the main theme of the play to enhance the story plot further. Abigail dominance is obvious in the opening scenes when she threatens Betty Parris she uses harsh words that seem to be more like a command when she speaks.
Abigail is malicious and very cruel; she can do anything to eliminate anyone that crosses her path. For example, she tries to win John’s love using various means, including killing John’s wife. Abigail tries to kill Elizabeth to get her out of the way. When her plan fails, she accuses Elizabeth of practicing witchcraft. Abigail thought that killing Elizabeth will have no option but to make John marry her. Later in the play, Abigail constantly looks for ways of eliminating Elizabeth and just win John’s love, but she did not succeed.
Even though Danforth is a government official and powerful figure in court, Abigail uses her manipulation to get her way; she claims to be the victim of witchcraft, and her testimony is readily accepted as evidence. Abigail’s testimony is held as true evidence even after John confesses to having had an affair in an attempt to discredit her.
All these events portray Abigail as a greedy character; she blames others for practicing witchcraft just to eliminate them. Despite the fact that Abigail was once found in the woods with other girls in a situation that looked as if they were practicing witchcraft, she feared for her life and had to blame someone to cover her acts.
Abigail blames her best friend to prove her innocence claiming that “she had seen Mary Warren’s spirit which was in the form of a bird. She says that “God made my face, you cannot want to tear my face, and envy is a deadly sin, Mary.” These are some examples of how Abigail used manipulative words to blame others just to cover up her actions.
The fact that she lusted for John Proctor, her resentment for Elizabeth Proctor pushed her to accuse Elizabeth wrongly. Abigail shows all the reasons to be blamed for the deaths of many people during the Salem witch trials. Abigail was self-centered. She was out to save herself at the expense of others. She did not care about anyone else and could easily get rid of anyone who got in her way. Her arrogance, controlling nature and dominance ended up hurting innocent people.
Throughout the play, there are many instances and several people who could have defended the innocent people accused of practicing witchcraft. However, most of them fail to do so making them responsible for the innocent death of many people in Salem. One of the people responsible for not doing anything to stop these accusations was Abigail Williams.
With her manipulative and dominance, Abigail greatly contributed to the persecution of innocent individuals. After the witch trial in 1692, more than 20 people were changes due to individual interest and personal gain. Abigail was the major focus of this play as she is the first person to accuse innocent people. Because of greed and power, the main character took advantage of the situation to accuse people who got in her way. The turmoil in Salem was majorly propelled by the desire for revenge and power.