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The Crucible by Arthur Miller - Barron's Booknotes
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Now for Mary Warren. Proctor has no doubt coached her in
what to say. We know she is afraid of him, we have seen him
threaten her. But he knows that threats alone won't stiffen Mary
against the gruelling trial she will have to face. He has
encouraged her as well. He tells her a Bible story in which an
angel watches over a little boy who also faces a dangerous task.
He reminds her of all the good people who are behind her all the
way. He has even set up their plea so that Francis Nurse and
Giles Corey will go up against the court first; these men will
surely convince the judges that Mary should be given a
sympathetic hearing. And behind all this moral support is the
rock wall of the truth. If all else fails, Proctor must have told
her, she has truth on her side. Because God damns all liars,
Abigail and the other girls are going straight to hell. Mary may
even be able to save her friends from eternal torment, by
breaking up this conspiracy of lies.



But in the end, as Mary well knows, everything will depend on
whether or not the judges believe her story. The weakness of her
story is obvious to everyone. She says the girls are lying. How
does she know? Because she used to be one of the group. If we
believe her now, it means she was lying before when she cried
out witches with the rest. But if she was a liar then, how can we
believe her now?

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The Crucible by Arthur Miller - Barron's Booknotes
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