Within the Crucible, there lies a complex story involving the accounts and happenings surrounding the 1692 Salem witch trials in Salem, Massachusetts. Act 1 of the Crucible sets up the unfolding of events which lead to witch accusations and increasing superstition among the puritan community. The Crucible reveals the intriguing and malicious character of Abigail Williams to be a manipulative and unabashed liar, who possesses the remarkable quality of self preservation even among what seem to be insurmountable odds. The character of Abigail Williams demonstrates domineering behavior throughout the act in such events as Abigail's threatening the girls to remain silent regarding events in the forest, Abigail's attempts of seducing John Proctor, and the repeated unsubstaincle accusations of Abigail placed on people within the Puritan community. Throughout the community, word of the supposed "witchcraft' begins to leak out under the immediate concern of Rev.
Parris. Rev. Parris fears that the incident could taint his reputation among the other Puritans. As a result, Rev. Parris continually interrogates Abigail with the intent of getting what he feels is the truth. Abigail continually acts innocent in order to eliminate the suspicion of Rev.
Parris. To keep the incident a secret, Abigail threatens the girls involved in the incident, so that they will not talk. More specifically, she threatens the girls with death by her hands. Her logic for this is quite clear, she wants to be cleared of all suspicion, and by putting fear into the girls, she feels that this is a adequately accomplished. As a result, Abagails tactics of manipulation keep her from receiving harsh persecution and accusations.
Another act of domineering behavior on part of Abigail is her repeated attempted seducing of Mr. Proctor. Abigail's reasons for this are not quite clear, but one could conclude that it is purposed for the reason of separating Mr. proctor from his wife Elizabeth Proctor and take her place as his wife.
It seems as though Abigail and Mr. Proctor had previous intimate relations, and Abigail's seducing of Mr. Proctor is an attempt to rehash this past relationship. It is for obvious reasons extreme megalomania that Abigail takes this course of action. Lastly, Abigail show herself to be an even more mischievous character by accusing Tituba of Witchcraft, and wrong doing. Tituba in turn is held in suspicion of being a witch and is threatened with the taking of her life if she refuses to talk about her supposed involvement with the devil.
Tituba reluctantly gives in to the accusations after the realization that it was necessary in order to save her life. This action on part of Abigail helps shift blame and suspicion from herself solely to that of Tituba. Tituba invents lies and sends the witchcraft fear further into a sense of fear for the Puritan community. This incident is a vivid example one of Abigail's most remarkable character attributes, her ability to manipulate those around her as she sees fit.
The false accusations of Abigail confirm her character as being domineering and untruthful at the expense of others. Abigail emerges from act 1 of the Crucible as an evil-spirited, manipulative young girl. The callous behavior of Abigail most likely stems from her childhood. She observed her parents being murdered by Indians at a young age and was orphaned as a result. No matter the reason for her violent nature, Act 1 clearly defines Abigail as a person bent on crushing those who oppose her. Abigail's domineering acts of threatening the other girls with death for talking of the events in the forest, seducing of John Proctor, and her false accusations of witchcraft serve as substantial reason for classifying Abigail as such an evil person.
To conclude, Abigail Williams arrives in Act 1 as one of the most complex and intriguing characters of the Crucible. 341.