Hester Prynne, through the eyes of the Puritans, is an extreme
sinner; she has gone against the Puritan ways, committing adultery. For
this irrevocably harsh sin, she must wear a symbol of shame for the rest of her life. "On the breast of her gown, in a fine red cloth surrounded by an elaborate embroidery and fantastic flourishes of gold thread, appeared the letter 'A.'" Hester's scarlet "A" serves as a public symbol of
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showed last 75 words of 614 total
more passionate and effective in his sermons and moral counsil to his congregation. Privately he is torn with self-hatred, and his body wastes away because of the remorse and knowing what only he and Hester know gnaws at his soul. He has not confessed, therefore he knows he can't begin his true penance, thus never being forgiven. He finally has the courage to do so at the hour of his death.
The Scarlet Letter