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Abigail Williams Character Essay

Paper Type: Free Essay Subject: English Literature
Wordcount: 780 words Published: 4th Sep 2017

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Being hung because of someone else’s lies, selfishness, and lustful temptations, seems fair right? This is exactly what happened because of Abigail Williams. 19 people were hanged during the Salem Witch Trials, which was consequent of Abigail Williams lies, and selfishness. Abigail was the young women that John Proctor had an affair on his wife with. After the affair, she became obsessed with John, despite his constant reassurance that what he did was wrong, and that he was through with her. She became obsessed to that point that she drank blood, and did a dance with the devil in order to see Mrs. Proctor killed. After this didn’t work, she began telling lies about seeing others (including Mrs. Proctor) with the devil, so that she would be hanged and she could possibly live a life with John. Analysis and study of Abigail Williams in The Crucible shows that she is a villain with manipulative skills, and is a compulsive liar, who is motivated by sexual temptation and John Proctor.

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Abigail Williams is a prime example of a villain because of her actions in The Crucible. One of the things that she does to portray her as villain is she lies about Tituba forcing her to drink blood, when really she did it under her own will. While Abigail was being pressured into saying who was involved with the Witchcraft she said, “She (Tituba) makes me drink blood!” (47). This resulted in Tituba being brutally beat and eventually sent back to her old country. Abigail also victimizes herself, in order to make it seem like she is innocent. For example she says, “She sends her spirit on me in church; she makes me laugh at prayer!” (48) during a court session. Abigail is also really good at drawing attention away from herself because another time during a court hearing, when she was about to get proven a liar, she suddenly acted as if there was a demon in the room. She screamed with terror, “She’s going to come down! She’s walking the beam!” (120). All of these instances do a great job of showing that she knows how to play the role of a villain, by making herself seem innocent.

Abigail has some major strengths that help her in being a villain, and those strengths are compulsive lying, and extremely good manipulative skills. Everyone knows that Mrs. Proctor is a goody woman in Salem; however, because she has something that Abigail wants she chooses to lie about the type of person she is in order to manipulate the way people view her by saying, “It’s a bitter woman, a lying, cold, sniveling woman, and I will not work for such a woman!” (12). She also was asked if she was the one conjuring spirits and she answered by putting the blame and Tituba and Ruth. Abigail replied, “Not I, sir – Tituba and Ruth.” (16). Betty (who has fallen sick and unconscious due to the “conjuring of spirits”) also even admits what she saw Abigail do, to kill Proctor’s wife. Betty exclaimed, “You did, you did! You drank a charm to kill John Proctor’s wife! You drank a charm to kill Goody Proctor!” (20). Abigail consistently lies about the doing of other people and tries to manipulate other people’s minds by scaring them.

The root of all Abigail’s wrong doings come from her unjust motivations, which has to do with her lust for John Proctor. Even though John is married to Elizabeth, she still wants John and is willing to do anything for it. She even says to him, “John- I am waitin’ for you every night.” (22). She also continues to fantasize about her relationship (mainly fueled by lust) with John Proctor. In front of Betty while she was unconscious she said to John, “I know how you clutched my back behind your house and sweated like a stallion whenever I come near! Or did I dream that? It’s she put me out, you cannot pretend it were you. I saw your face when she put me out, and you loved me then and you do now.” (23) Abigail even ventures as far as to beg John to talk about his affection for her. She begs, ” Give me a word, John. A soft word.” (23). All of her lies, sins, and vengeful feelings for Mrs. Proctor are consequential of her love and lust for John Proctor.

Abigail Williams is a villain who is fueled by the motivations of lust for John Proctor, which brings out her manipulative strength and lying abilities. All the things that Abigail Williams did during the crucible, caused harm, uproar, and eventually death for a lot of people. If that’s not a villain, what is?


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