The Crucible Act 1 part 2 Summary

     In the second part of act two Betty begins screaming, which causes the adults to return to her bedroom. The Putnams and Reverend Parris are joined by the elderly Rebecca Nurse and Giles Corey. Rebecca, the first one to bring any sense to the situation, says that she believes the children will calm when they tire of it. A grandmother of twenty-six, Rebecca has seen many children behave in silly ways and recognizes what the children are doing. Proctor criticizes Parris's preaching and uses the topics of damnation as his reason for not attending church very often. Then Parris complains back about his lack of firewood, which is supposed to be a part of his salary. Giles and Corey argue about whom a particular stretch of land belongs to.

     Reverend John Hale enters. He has come from the nearby town of Beverly because he is an expert on witches. He asks questions about the ailing girls. Proctor doesn't seem to like the talk of witches, so he chooses to leave. Parris and Mrs. Putnam slowly reveal details of what the girls did in the woods the night before. Rebecca also dislikes the implication that witchcraft is involved, so she leaves. Since Reverend Hale is an expert, Giles decides to ask him about his wife, Martha, reading books, and Reverend Hale says they will discuss it later. Reverend Hale turns his questions to Abigail. He asks her about the dancing in the woods. His questions lead her to answer affirmatively to things that might not have actually occurred, such as a frog jumping into a kettle of soup. He puts pressure on her by saying her cousin may be dying. This fear leads Abigail to pass the blame onto Tituba. Hale asks to speak to Tituba.

     Tituba is used to being blamed for bad things that happen, but she is still nervous when Hale questions her about what she did in the woods. Abigail not only blames Tituba for what happened in the woods, but she also blames her for other offenses that Abigail has been scolded for in the past. For example, Abigail says that Tituba made her laugh during prayer or stand naked in her doorway at night. Tituba denies these charges and continues to assert that she has never had any dealings with the devil; however, when first Parris says he will whip her for lying and then Putnam says that she should be hanged, Tituba changes her mind. She begins to tell them that the doesn't desire to work for the devil, that she has seen him, but she is a good Christian woman who wants to return to God. They pressure her to name people who she saw with the devil. Like Abigail, Tituba feels pressured and decides to pass the blame along, so she names some women in town whom she knows people dislike. Tituba says she saw Sarah Good and Sarah Osburn with the devil and then men begin to praise her. Abigail sees how Tituba is being treated as a hero, and she wants the same treatment, so she jumps in and admits that she saw the devil too. Then she names people she saw with the devil. Betty catches on to what's happening, and she sits up and names more names. The adults are thrilled that the "spell has been broken," but Tituba realizes what she has done and knows that more trouble is still coming.

Related Links:

The Crucible Act 1 part 2 Quiz
The Crucible Act 2 part 1 Summary
The Crucible Act 2 part 2 Summary
The Crucible Summary
The Crucible Quotes
The Crucible Important Characters
The Crucible Quiz
Literature Summaries
Arthur Miller Facts

To link to this The Crucible Act 1 part 2 Summary page, copy the following code to your site: