The Use Of Symbolism In ?"The Scarlet Letter" By Nathaniel Hawthorne

605 words - 2 pages

Flowered PearlWhen someone looks at a painting or reads a novel they often discover a deeper portentthan what is openly displayed. A hidden meaning can be found in many common objects. InThe Scarlet Letter Nathaniel Hawthorne compares flowers to Pearl, and all that is good. He usesexamples like a rose bush to symbolize moral value. Wherever possible, he depicts Pearl as asweet and innocent child. Pearl resembles a flower and often in her actions defends this notion.Pearl acts with the flowers to show an element of grace left in a dismal world.At the door to a prison, the symbol of infamy, stands a glimmer of hope. "On one side ofthe portal . . . was a wild rosebush, covered, in this month of June, with its delicate gems . . . wecould hardly do otherwise than pluck one of its flowers, and present it to the reader. It mayserve, let us hope, to symbolize some sweet moral blossom that may be found along thetrack"(46) In this way Hawthorne uses a flourishing rose bush to embody the righteousnessremaining in the world. He not lightly emphasizes the fragile beauty of its flowers. A rose bushmay appear dazzling, but beneath its shell of untamed beauty lies the thorns of a dismal world.Thus, Hawthorne proves the value of such a flower as the jewels of a rose bush to symbolize thehope that blossoms in a bleak world.While the flowers represent morality, they also stand for Pearl. Later on Pearl is fondlyreferred to as "that little creature, whose innocent life had sprung, by the inscrutable decree ofprovidence, a lovely and immortal flower."(85) The general image this statement depicts is anuncorrupted, pure child, and then comparing her to a flower. Throughout the rest of the bookPearl has a connection with flowers. She often wears them and is...

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