• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Character Analysis John Proctor In a sense, the play, 'The Crucible', has the structure of a classical tragedy with John Proctor being the protagonist of the play and its tragic hero.

Extracts from this document...


Character Analysis John Proctor In a sense, the play, 'The Crucible', has the structure of a classical tragedy with John Proctor being the protagonist of the play and its tragic hero. As there is a saying "To err is human..." John Proctor likewise was led to his grave due to a fatal flaw he possessed. Proctor, in his first appearance in the play, is presented as a quick-witted, sharp-tongued man with a keen sense of pride and a streak of confidence. He was a symbol of justice and righteousness. His secret affair with Abigail, before Elizabeth Proctor fired her, seemed to end since John no more harbored feelings for Abigail. Abigail Give me a word, John, A soft word. Proctor No, no, Abby. That's done with. However, upon learning the truth... Abigail I have a sense for heat, John, and yours has drawn me to my window, and I have seen you looking up, burning in your loneliness. Do you tell me you've never looked up at my window? This suggests that what Abigail had been saying to John was the truth too that he still had kind feelings for her, and created Abigail's jealousy of his wife, Elizabeth, which sets the entire witch hysteria in motion. His wisdom, sharpness and his independence are traits would make a suitable person to question the motives of those who cry witchcraft. However, his guilt over his affair with Abigail makes his situation much more problematic because he is very guilty in the hypocrisy he detested to see in others. Secondly, John does not seem to be favoring the authority Parris possess that he blatantly said right in front of Parris that he would join the faction which was "against him and all authority". Once the trials begin, Proctor realizes that he can stop Abigail's rampage through Salem but only if he confesses to his adultery. ...read more.


From giving in to lust and sexual desires, to adultery and finally to lying and murder in a sense, her deeds went against the very code of religion. A mere accusation from one of Abigail's troop is enough to incarcerate and convict even the most well-respected inhabitant of Salem. Whereas others once reproached her for her adultery, she now has the opportunity to accuse them of the worst sin of all: devil-worship. Abigail was also manipulative as she was able to take advantage of her friends, Reverend Parris and the judges to make them believe her so that she was able to attain freedom and have Proctor to herself after getting rid of Elizabeth. She only did this for her personal vengeance and benefit. Abigail could be even merciless if she had the choice, by sending nineteen innocent people to the gallows for crimes they did not commit. She was a shrewd mastermind who was opportunative, for her benefits. Although, she is strong and determined, this does not make her a good person. She used her intelligence in a shrewd yet cruel manner. She was thoughtless of the lives that were taken away, all due to her. She was the root of all evil. Having Proctor was her only ambition. And when she learns that Proctor, too, is dead when he was sent to the gallows, her utmost motive in recovering Proctor, her love, was gone. Her will to struggle was no longer present. So, she too left and never looked to turn back to Salem. Reverend Samuel Parris Basically, Reverend Samuel Parris is a paranoid, power-hungry, yet oddly self-pitying figure. Parris presents himself as a father who cares and worries for his daughter, Betty, who had been supposedly witched. Trying to hide the fact, he does not believe it. Parris No-no. There be no unnatural cause here. Tell him I have sent for Reverend Hale of Beverly and Mr Hale will surely confirm that. ...read more.


Rebecca Nurse Francis nurse's wife, the elderly and respected Rebecca is a wise, sensible, and upright woman, held in tremendous regard by most of the Salem community, and one of the voices of good sense in the play. Hale has already heard of her good reputation before meeting her. However, she falls victim to the hysteria when the Putnams accuse her of witchcraft and she refuses to confess.The conviction of Rebecca reveals how low the community at Salem has fallen. She goes to her death with dignity and acceptance Francis Nurse - A wealthy, influential man in Salem. Nurse is well respected by most people in Salem, but is an enemy of Thomas Putnam and his wife. Mary Warren Mary is the Proctors' servant. She is weak and easily influenced, so it is ominous that Proctor's evidence rests on Mary's confession. She can barely speak in the courtroom and it's relatively simple for Abigail to 'turn' her. This is devastating for Proctor as Mary then testifies against him. Tituba - Reverend Parris's black slave from Barbados. Tituba agrees to perform voodoo at Abigail's request Betty Parris - Reverend Parris's ten-year-old daughter. Betty falls into a strange stupor after Parris catches her and the other girls dancing in the forest with Tituba. Her illness and that of Ruth Putnam fuel the first rumors of witchcraft. Martha Corey - Giles Corey's third wife. Martha's reading habits lead to her arrest and conviction for witchcraft. Ezekiel Cheever - A man from Salem who acts as clerk of the court during the witch trials. He is upright and determined to do his duty for justice. Judge Hathorne - A judge who presides, along with Danforth, over the witch trials. Herrick - The marshal of Salem. Mercy Lewis Servant to the Putnam household. She is a merciless girl who seems to delight in the girls' activities. The threats Abigail uses on the other girls are unnecessary for Mercy. When Abigail eventually leaves town, Mercy goes with her. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Arthur Miller section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Arthur Miller essays

  1. Marked by a teacher

    Is John Proctor a good man?

    4 star(s)

    This is the very definition of a hero: someone who gives up everything he has to fight for justice or his friends. This surely is a good quality in proctor. The court then continues to prod and probe Proctor for his information and proof that the girls are liars.

  2. How does John Proctor change throughout the play? Does Act Four show him as ...

    We want to be able to look down on him for what he has done wrong, he has slightly tarnished the good feelings and trust that we felt earlier, but at the same time there is this overriding feeling that he is doing this to save his wife's life, that

  1. Human Motivation in the Crucible. Abigail, Thomas Putnam, and Reverend Parris are among those ...

    His motivations include greed and maintaining his reputation or self-image. Parris is attached to the material side of life. He demands more salary, and tells Giles Corey "you will look far for a man of my kind at sixty pound a year!"

  2. Proctor, hero or Villain?

    As john Proctor awaits the rope he is offered his life back if he is willing to confess to witch craft. Instead proctor chooses to die. Danforth sturdily asks proctor "Is that document a lie, if it is I will not accept it, what say you I will not deal

  1. Do you consider John Proctor to be a modern tragic hero?

    To Proctor, the risk of Abigail revealing his sins is too great. Proctor is very weak willed at the start of the play, which highlights his vulnerabilities as a human being while making his change all the more pronounced. He lacks moral courage and strength: strength to do what is

  2. Character analysis on Abigail (The Crucible)

    She is wide eyed and innocent with her judges and fierce and frightening with the girls and continually manipulative. She is an evil girl and yet we as the audience never really hate her, but we feel pity for her and we seem to understand the reason behind all her actions.

  1. To what extent can John Proctor be described as a tragic hero in Arthur ...

    This dynamism allows us to empathize with proctor and makes us feel that the predicament he is in is all the more tragic. Miller also establishes Proctor as the protagonist by giving him qualities the audience can find favor with. John went against the normality's and conceptions of the townsfolk.

  2. "I have given you my soul; leave me my name!" John Proctor Act 4 ...

    This outcome would result in him letting down this wife, children, his friends and even the people who have already been hung for witchery. Although ultimately he would be letting himself down and losing his pride and honour. The other choice he could take was death.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work