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Character Analysis of Dimmesdale in the Scarlet Letter

The character this paper is analyzing is reverend Dimmesdale because throughout the story reverend Dimmesdale made some dramatic changes in his life. In the beginning of the story, Reverend Dimmesdale was a quiet but great man, adored by others and worshipped by many. Toward the middle and the end of the story Reverend Dimmesdale changed as each chapter went on. Reverend Dimmesdale was killing slowly by keeping something within him that makes him feel guilt and anguish each and every day.

By Reverend Dimmesdale keeping something within, he felt extremely guilty and not functioning to his full potential, isolating himself did not do any better, as a matter of fact, isolating himself from the rest of the world began to eat away his feelings. Everybody in Salem looked up to and idolized them lost his dignity and the trust of the people in the town in due time.

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Before Reverend Dimmesdale even had problems or stress and anguish, Reverend Dimmesdale preached to the people of Salem with all of his heart and might. Reverend Dimmesdale was a person you could talk to for the first time and you know you just made a new companion. Reverend Dimmesdale was a very honourable man filled with a preacher’s faith. The perspective that I had was he was one of the main characters or an important secondary character.

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Even though he kept his secret within himself, somebody close to him found out what was wrong with Reverend Dimmesdale and is going to use that to his advantage to torture and torment Reverend Dimmesdale. Mr Chillingworth, Reverend Dimmesdale’s personal companion within his quarters found out by opening his shirt and finding an “A” carved into Reverend Dimmesdale’s chest, an “A” across the chest in these days usually meant that somebody committed a sin or something that is not acceptable in the town.

Without the knowledge that Mr Chillingworth knew his secret. Reverend Dimmesdale gave in to every word and everything that Mr Chillingworth said. Trusting Mr Chillingworth was his mistake because trusting him is putting Reverend Dimmesdale into an early grave. Chillingworth is trying to make Reverend Dimmesdale stand in a deep depression. Mr Chillingworth was the upper hand with Reverend Dimmesdale.

When Reverend Dimmesdale could not hold the pain within himself, he confessed saying that he had sinned worst than anybody in town. Reverend Dimmesdale was saying he had committed adultery with Hester Prynne. On top of the scaffold, he asked her to join him where they should have been seven years ago. While they were on top of the scaffold Reverend Dimmesdale died in the hands of the adulteress, Hester Prynne.

In conclusion, Reverend Dimmesdale was a preacher who followed his religion, but a secret he had held for seven years could not remain a secret anymore, all the pain and anguish ran out of him like a stampede about the seven years he had kept the secret to himself and he knew that he was killing himself as well. Handling all that stress at that moment he confessed to the town of Salem could not be done, because it felt like he let everybody down, and as an act of desperation, Reverend Dimmesdale died.

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Character Analysis of Dimmesdale in the Scarlet Letter. (2021, Mar 02). Retrieved January 30, 2023, from