Character Summary Proctor

Essay by EssaySwap ContributorHigh School, 11th grade February 2008

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John Proctor The crucible is basically a very classic tragedy. John Proctor is the play's tragic hero. John Proctor is an honest, upright, and very out spoken person. Although John Proctor is a good man, he has a fatal flaw. This fatal flaw eventually leads to his tragic downfall at the end of this play. There are a few people that influence his downfall both in a good and bad way. These characters include; Abigail Williams, Elizabeth Proctor, Rev. Parris, and Mary Warren. These people all contributed to John Proctor's date with death.

John Proctor's fatal flaw is his lust for one Abigail Williams, which led for his affair with her and created Abigail's jealousy of Proctors wife Elizabeth Proctor. This affair basically put the wheels in motion for the whole witchcraft hysteria. Proctor lives with this burden on his back throughout the whole play. He is constantly reminded by his wife that he is no saint and that she knows what he has done but she never tell him.

Abigail in Act 1 confronts John Proctor, but Proctor tells Abigail to leave him alone that he has nothing to do with her anymore. After this happened Abigail's jealousy get worse and John keeps getting more and more depressed with the agony of the adultery he committed.

Once the trials begin Proctor realizes that he can stop Abigail by simply confessing to his adultery. If John were to confess his good name would be ruined in this small town and that is something he is not willing to do. John Proctor is too much of a proud man is he basis everything on his reputation. This is the main reason he does not want to confess. Proctor tried to make an attempt to bring Abigail down during the witch trials, through the testimony of Mary Warren, to name Abigail a fraud but without revealing his crucial information. When this attempt failed John finally comes out with a full confession of his adultery. Calling Abigail a "whore" and telling everybody that he was guilty of adultery. But it's too late. Abigail caused so much trouble that John Proctors confession can't even save him. His confession only leads to his arrest and conviction as a witch. What a terrible twist in a terrible tragedy for John Proctor.

In the end Proctor does redeem himself in a certain way in which he is offered an opportunity for him to make a public confession of his guilt and be able to live. Proctor, being the honest man that he is, broke down and signed the confession. But Proctor changes his mind and decides not to sign the confession for the simple fact that his doesn't want to ruin his name in the town. Also because he has a son or daughter on the way and he doesn't want his son to know what he did and how he ruined his life. But he doesn't sign the confession because he doesn't want to ruin his soul and he doesn't want to dishonor himself. This once again shows that John Proctor is a very strong man that has pride in his honor and his religious life. Although tragic in the end Proctor is real a hero who shows that in death there is strength, integrity, and pride. In the face of adversity John Proctor basically redeemed himself for his earlier sins in the face of god. As Elizabeth Proctor put it " He gave his goodness now. God forbid I take it from him!"