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In "The Minister's Black Veil", how does the veil affect the wedding?

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reagannb2 | eNotes Newbie

Posted November 16, 2012 at 3:04 PM via iOS

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In "The Minister's Black Veil", how does the veil affect the wedding?

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Michelle Ossa | College Teacher | (Level 3) Educator Emeritus

Posted November 16, 2012 at 7:46 PM (Answer #1)

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The wedding scene in Nathaniel Hawthorne's "The Minister's Black Veil" is greatly affected, particularly when it comes to how the atmosphere of the event went from joyous to macabre.

The narrative tells of how the veil brought with it an overall sense of death and desolation marked by the "cold fingers" of the bride, as well as by the tremulous looks of the guests.

When Mr. Hooper came, the first thing that their eyes rested on was the same horrible black veil, which had added deeper gloom to the funeral, and could portend nothing but evil to the wedding.

The description of the sensation produced by the veil consists in how it compares to a "cloud" that have "rolled duskily" bringing everything to a halt, and thus darkening the mood of an otherwise happy occasion. Lest we mention that the minister himself had an epiphany during the wedding as he raised his glass of wine when he saw his own reflection. Even he was perplexed by what he saw behind his own black veil, which was himself and how he looks like to the whole world.

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