The House of the Seven Gables Questions and Answers
by Nathaniel Hawthorne

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Explain the Gothic elements in The House of the Seven Gables.

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One of the most distinctive Gothic elements in Hawthorne's work is the house, itself.  Gothic elements in literature can be found in the element of fear that runs rampant throughout the work.  In this case, the Gothic element of the house itself is of vital importance to the narrative.  The house was obtained under questionable circumstances in terms of Maule's execution, Pyncheon's role in sentencing it, and in the curse upon the latter from the former. The deaths of multiple characters and the lack of explanation behind these help to enhance the Gothic elements in the novel.  These realities converge upon the house, itself.   The house embodies that Gothic element of fear, supernatural curses, and something beyond that confounds the mind and confuses the imagination:

Never had the old house appeared so dismal to poor Hepzibah, as when she departed on that wretched errand. There was a strange aspect in it. As she trode along the foot-worn passages, and opened one crazy door after...

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