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In The Crucible, describe Giles Corey's attitude and character and why that may make...

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amandasarpong | Student, Grade 12 | (Level 1) eNoter

Posted November 28, 2012 at 8:55 PM via web

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In The Crucible, describe Giles Corey's attitude and character and why that may make him a good man and an idiot at times. 

sometimes giles could be described as brave

other times he was like an idiot-telling (someone i cant remember) that his wife was reading a strange book

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lsumner | High School Teacher | (Level 2) Senior Educator

Posted November 28, 2012 at 10:22 PM (Answer #1)

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In The Crucible, Giles Corey is a strange man. Miller describes him as follows:

"knotted with muscle, canny, inquisitive, and still powerful. . . . He didn' t give a hoot for public opinion, and only in his last years did he bother much with the church. He was a crank and a nuisance, but withal a deeply innocent and brave man."

No doubt, Giles is a brave man. He would rather die than confess to being involved in witchcraft. Giles neither confesses to witchcraft charges nor does he deny them. He refuses to stand trial, so he is killed by the heavy weight of stones that press him to death.
He dies bearing the weight of heavy stones. As he is dying, his last words are "more weight."  

While Giles is brave, he is not too bright. Before his death, he confesses that his wife reads strange books. This puts her under condemnation of being involved in witchcraft. After he brings up the fact that his wife has been reading strange books, his wife is accused of witchcraft. Giles realizes his blunder and regrets having brought up the fact that his wife reads strange books. He realizes his wife is innocent and recognizes that his own actions have condemned her. He deeply regrets opening his mouth against his wife. 

Although Giles is seen as a comical figure in The Crucible, he dies a serious death. Giles Corey dies as a brave man who tried to get the court to see how ridiculous their accusations were about the people of Salem being guilty of witchcraft involvement:

He turned from a comical hero into a true and honorable one, a man who stood up against hysteria of the infamous Salem Witch Trials. 

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