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What are the biblical allusions in Act Two of Arthur Miller's The Crucible?

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janelee-lopez | eNotes Newbie

Posted August 30, 2013 at 2:33 AM via web

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What are the biblical allusions in Act Two of Arthur Miller's The Crucible?

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literaturenerd | High School Teacher | (Level 2) Educator Emeritus

Posted August 31, 2013 at 10:00 PM (Answer #1)

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An allusion is a brief reference to a person or event which the author hopes shines light onto certain aspects of a text (for the reader). In regards to Arthur Miller's The Crucible (specifically act two), much talk of religion is made throughout the play. Since Puritans believed in the combination of church and state, the church had the power to construct laws which were faith based. While much is spoken of the Commandments and sin, one main allusion to the Bible is made. 

"Will part like the sea for Israel" refers to Moses' parting of the Red Sea. Here, Elizabeth compares Abigail to Moses. Since the court is now hailing Abigail as the one who knows everything about all, they are looking at her as a prophet. At the same time, many villagers (who wish not to anger her) would move as Abigail walked by. They want to stay out of her way so that she does not accuse them of witchcraft. 

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