John Proctor: A Tragic Hero In The Crucible

June 23, 2022 by Essay Writer

Every tragedy in history has a tragic hero. Now a tragic hero always has the potential for greatness but is destined to fail. They also meet a tragic death and face it with honor. The Salem Witch Trials began in the spring of 1692, in Salem Massachusetts. During this period of time there were 200 people that were accused of being a witch, and 20 people were hanged. During the Salem Witch Trials there is a “tragic hero” named John Proctor.

First, a tragic hero is neither completely good nor completely evil. In act 2 of The Crucible John goes on to say “I nailed the roof upon the church, I hung the door-”. This may not seem like a lot but it does. In the village of Salem, they took their religion very serious. They were Puritans so they went to church every Sunday. Now saying this jumps into how Proctor wasn’t completely good. In Act III of The Crucible, John explains why he comes to church once a month. Procter explains by saying “I-I have no love for Mr. Parris. It is no secret. But god I surely love. ”, after he was accused of rarely coming to church. Now the reason he never came to church was explained by Cheever. Cheever went on to say “He plow on Sunday, sir” , since Procter would plow on Sunday he never went to church. This explains that he wasn’t all that good , because it was one of the 10 Commandments to go to church on Sunday’s.

Next, a tragic hero is responsible for their own fate. John Procter was indeed responsible for his fate. In act IV of The Crucible was going to be hanged for being accused of being a witch. He talked to his wife Elizibeth before they took him. He then decided he wanted his life back. When Hale and Parris went to go get him Hale told John he should sign his name on the slip. Now when John signed the slip Parris told him they were going to put the names of everyone who confessed on the church door. Back then if you had a bad reputation, it would carry out for the rest of your family. Even if you had kids later on. Everybody would know who they are due to the bad things you have done. Now John thought about this for a while, he didn’t want to ruin his name forever. Even if it wasn’t true that he was a witch. He then ripped the piece of paper and said he didn’t want to confess. This makes John responsible for his own fate, because he could have easily confessed and signed the paper. He could’ve saved his own life. But since he didn’t want to confess, he led himself to his own fate.

Finally, all tragic heroes meet a tragic death and face it with honor. John Proctor did indeed face a tragic death. In the previous paragraph he tore up his confession and chose his own death. As he tore it up Hale was in shock. His wife Elizabeth wasn’t in shock. She was proud of her husband’s decision. Soon after Proctor tore up his confession, he and two other people from the village were off to be hanged. When they got there, everyone was more quiet than usual. The crowd would usually be really loud when they saw someone get hanged. But when they saw John going, they were all quiet and devastated. John Procter, Rebecca Nurse, and Martha Corey all were waiting to be pushed off the ledge they were standing on. As they awaited their death they began to say something out loud and together. In the movie The Crucible, John Proctor and the other characters began to recite “ The Lord’s Prayer”. This proves that John Proctor met a very tragic death and he faced it with honor.

In conclusion, we know what it takes to be a tragic hero. In every tragedy there is always a tragic hero. A tragic hero is neither completely good nor completely evil. All tragic heroes are responsible for their own fate. Lastly tragic heroes meet a tragic death and face it with honor. In the spring of 1692 in Salem Massachusetts, the village of Salem met their tragic hero. John Proctor. In my eyes I see that John Proctor is a tragic hero.


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