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The Crucible Commentary - Why is John Proctor's Position so Difficult?

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Freya Ollerearnshaw The Crucible Commentary- Why is John Proctor's Position so Difficult? John Proctor is going to find proving his wife's innocence an extremely difficult task for several reasons: Firstly, his case is based on the allegation, made by himself, that the girls are frauds. His only evidence of this is in a conversation between himself and Abigail. In which she admits that there is not witchcraft in Salem. The two of them were alone eat the time so there are no witnesses to verify this. Abigail will surely deny she said this so the judges will only have one word against another. John Proctor is a farmer who has made no secret of his controversial opinions. Abigail is the minister's niece and has become a respected and somewhat feared member of the court. Bearing this in mind, the court will be inclined to believe Abigail against Proctor unless evidence to the contrary arises. However, Proctor has another way of proving the girls to be fakes. May Warren admitted to him that their actions were pretence, but she is not strong-minded and is terrified of what Abigail will do to her if she reveals their deception. ...read more.


An example of this is Mr Putnam, who sees the hangings as an opportunity to aquire more land. Giles Corey comes forward with evidence of this. He claims that Putnam prompted his daughter to cry out witchery on George Jacobs. If this man were to hang then Putnam would receive his property. When this evidence reaches Danfoth he locks Gils away for not revealing his informant. This too is an example of the biased actions of Danforth. Proctor could choose to reveal his affair with Abigail to the court. This would damage his reputation but do the same to Abigail's and make the court realise that she is not the innocent, law-abiding girl she appears to be. Proctor is very likely to use this, as it is the one piece of evidence for which he has another witness besides himself and Abigail. However, this witness is his wife who is locked away and will not know that he has chosen to confess and she might decide to protect his name by denying the affair. If this happens, Proctor will be deemed a liar and his whole case will fall to pieces. ...read more.


My wife has been accused, not for justice but for hatred and resentment. The only evidence Abigail has against Elizabeth is the discovery of a poppet in my wife's possession. This poppet had been presented to Elizabeth that very evening from Mary Warren. She had sewn it during her long hours in the courtroom during which time Abigail sat beside her. The needle was mistakenly left inside the poppet for safekeeping and I am certain Abigail witnessed this event and used her knowledge against my wife. Mary Warren has confirmed this to me and will confess to you that the needle was not my wife's doing but her own. I reveal these shocking facts to you because I feel strongly that the truth must be know and that it is the way for my wife's innocence to be proven. I appeal to you as a fellow Christian not to hang a woman whose only crime is marrying a deceitful man. I beg that as a fair and upright judge you acknowledge that, for the reasons set out in this deposition, my wife is innocent of all blame and to free her, as she deserves. Signed this 12th day of May in the year of our lord1692, John Proctor ...read more.

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