language in the crucible -

one of the most remarkable aspects of the crucible is miler's creation

of believable dialogue for his 17th century puritans

although partly based on what he found in salem records, most of it is

his own invention

it is convincingly old-fashioned without it being hard to understand

the language carries echos of the king james bible; but word by word,

apart from a few achatic terms - such as 'harlot' and 'poppet' - the

vocabulary is mostly modern

miller achieves his effects by linking words in an unusual way, using

double negatives, chnging verb tenses, and other devices of the same


here are some examples :

pg 9 : he cannot discover no medicine for it in his books

pg 10 : i know you have not opened with me

pg 59 : seeing i do live so closely with you, they dismissed it

pg 95 : i am thirty three time in court in my life

pg 114 : you wonder yet if rebellion's spoke ?

with this shared language miller varies the way his characters speak to

suit their background and personality

ministers and judges naturally use more elaborate phrases than the


giles is blunt and coarse : pg 96 - a fart on thomas putnam, that is

what i say to that

john protor usues some of the most poetic lines, whether he is

describing his delight in the massachusett's countryside (pg 51) or

crying out in despair at the end of act 3 (pg 119)

there is an element of comedy in the language between protor and mary in

the scene where he told her to go to bed and she said she would not have

him order her around but when he gave her a choice, she decided to go to

bed after all

this particular comic scene heightens the horrors of the situation as

influential people like proctor are at the mercy of silly girls accusing

everyone of witchcraft

most characters use similie and metaphor

example as follows

pg 20 : there be no blush about my name

pg 102 : a very augur bit will now be turned into your souls until your

honesty is proved

pg 10 : my daughter and my niece i discovered dancing like heathen in

the forest

pg 29 : i know how you....sweat like a stallion whenever i come near!

on pg 132 where hale is speaking to elizabeth, he uses elaborated

language and he talked a lot about himself before coming to the point

his language reveals who he is as he was very full of himself when he

first came to salem that he was blinded to the truth and when he finally

came to the 'point' (turth) it was too late

Word Count: 464

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