The Scarlet Letter

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The Scarlet Letter Chapter 15 Summary & Analysis

Summary
Analysis
As Chillingworth departs, Hester thinks that though it's a sin, she hates Chillingworth for tricking her into thinking she'd be happy as his wife.
Hester prioritizes her happiness over fear of sin.
Themes
Sin Theme Icon
Individuality and Conformity Theme Icon
She rejoins Pearl by the seaside. Pearl has arranged seaweed to form a letter "A" on her own chest. She pleads with Hester to tell her what the scarlet letter means, and asks if Hester wears it for the same reason Dimmesdale covers his heart with his hand.
Pearl senses that understanding the letter's significance is crucial to understanding herself and her connection to Dimmesdale.
Themes
Sin Theme Icon
Individuality and Conformity Theme Icon
Hester lies and says she wears the letter because of its beautiful gold thread. Pearl, knowing better, seeks the real reason, and Hester threatens to punish her.
After advocating that Chillingworth be honest, Hester is "false" to her daughter.
Themes
Sin Theme Icon
Individuality and Conformity Theme Icon