The Crucible. Act 1 Test Review. Act 1. The Overture. What does the phrase “endless capacity for dissembling” tell us about Abigail?. She is extremely deceptive always question her reliability Search for a hidden motive in her words. Why does Abigail admit to dancing in the forest?.
Act 1 Test
FYIIn a written commentary on the play, Miller indicated that he considered Thomas Putnam one of the play’s principal villains. He notes that Putnam was vindictive, with many grievances against his neighbors. He had numerous complaints involving disputes over ownership of land. Miller notes that Putnam seems to have played a key role in the accusations of witchcraft. Some historians have concluded that the real Thomas Putnam used accusations of witchcraft as an excuse to gain land.
FYISneezing can occur when dust or pollen irritates the lining in the nasal passages. Congestion from colds or allergies can also force a person to sneeze. Ruth Putnam may have had a physical illness; however, superstition also held that sneezing might indicate that a possessed person was expelling demons through the nose. This may be the origin of the practice of saying “God bless you” when a person sneezes. It also probably is the reason Mercy suggests that sneezing may restore Ruth’s senses.
Enter Abigail #3?
FYIPuritans believed that you did not have to actually commit the act to be guilty of it. They thought that if you lusted in your heart, it was the same thing as committing adultery. Therefore, John Proctor could have considered himself guilty of cheating on his wife without ever having physically touched Abby.
FYIIn his commentary on the play, Miller describes Rebecca and Francis Nurse as people highly respected for their moral character, good judgment, and success. He notes that, before the arrival of Parris, the Nurses and their friends had blocked the appointment of a minister supported by the Putnams. Political differences also were leading to conflicts between the Nurses’ friends and the town authorities allied with the Putnams.
“I think she’ll wake in time. Pray calm yourselves. I have eleven children, and I am twenty-six times a grandma, and I have seen them all through their sill seasons, and when it come on them they will run the Devil bowlegged keeping up with their mischief. I think she’ll wake when she tires of it. A child’s spirit is like a child, you can never catch it by running after it; you must stand still, and, for love, it will soon itself come back.”
Foreshadows the eventual charges
against respectable citizens.
When Abigail enters, she is described as "a strikingly beautiful girl. . . with an endless capacity for dissembling." What does the phrase "endless capacity for dissembling" suggest?
Rebecca Nurse, who walks to Betty's bed and quiets her with her presence, is a voice of reason and rationality. To what does she attribute Betty's condition?
Who is Rev. Hale, and why was he sent for? Why does Rebecca Nurse tell Parris that Hale should be sent home rather than allowed to see Betty?
The Rev. Hale enters. From his comments, where may we infer that he believes that authority resides, and what does this say of his personality?