Could any of the characters in The Crucible have done more to end the hysteria in Salem?

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Reverend Hale could certainly have done a lot more to end the hysteria. As both a man of God and an expert in witchcraft he should've been able to see straight away that there was no foundation to Abigail Williams' lies and false accusations. Although he did intervene to try and halt the court proceedings, by that time it was too late. The hysteria had already got completely out of control and no one was in a position to stop it, no matter how hard they tried.

Danforth, as the most senior judge in the Salem witch trials, could've put a stop to the hysteria early on by ruling that there was insufficient evidence to determine that anyone was guilty of witchcraft. But for largely selfish reasons he chose not to. An incredibly vain man, he was so puffed up by the enormous power and prestige that the trial brought him, so enamored of being the center of attention, that he wanted the proceedings to continue for as long as possible. Instead of trying to get at the truth and deliver justice for...

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