How does Roger Chillingworth's appearance change? How does Hester interpret the changes she sees in Chillingworth?

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In chapter XIV of Nathaniel Hawthorne's The Scarlet Letter, Hester and Chillingworth have their first conversation face to face nearly seven years after they first spoke to each other during Hester's stay in prison for adultery.

Many things are confessed during this conversation. Namely, Hester admits her hatred...

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In chapter XIV of Nathaniel Hawthorne's The Scarlet Letter, Hester and Chillingworth have their first conversation face to face nearly seven years after they first spoke to each other during Hester's stay in prison for adultery.

Many things are confessed during this conversation. Namely, Hester admits her hatred for Chillingworth and basically curses the day she married him. On the other hand, Chillingworth bitterly remembers his marriage to Hester as a huge abomination of which he should have anticipated this ending. After all, at the time they marry Hester is still a very young girl and Chillingworth is a middle age man.

Nevertheless, Chillingworth admits that he is aware of his obvious changes in physique. He also accepts that his changes are a result of anger and hatred, which have turned him into a form of fiend-because of Hester.

In a word, old Roger Chillingworth was a striking evidence of man's faculty of transforming himself into a devil, if he will only, for a reasonable space of time, undertake a devil's office. This unhappy person had effected such a transformation by devoting himself, for seven years, to the constant analysis of a heart full of torture, and deriving his enjoyment thence, and adding fuel to those fiery tortures which he analysed and gloated over.

However, Hester has her say as well. She actually looks at Chillingworth and confesses her dread

What see you in my face,” asked the physician, “that you look at it so earnestly?”

“Something that would make me weep, if there were any tears bitter enough for it,” answered she. “But let it pass! It is of yonder miserable man that I would speak.”

Conclusively, chapter XIV openly and descriptively narrates that Roger Chillingworth has, indeed, transformed from bad to worse, all because of his obsession in making both Dimmesdale and Hester pay for what he feels is a personal offence to himself.

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In chapter 14 of Nathaniel Hawthorne’s The Scarlet Letter, Roger Chillingworth’s appearance is described several times. In the post above, his appearance is described in terms of how Hester Prynne sees him. There is another key part of the chapter that occurs a bit later and uses Chillingworth’s appearance in a different way, showing the reader how Chillingworth actually sees himself.

Chillingworth has devoted his life, since coming to New England, to anonymously torturing Reverend Dimmesdale for committing adultery with his wife, Hester Prynne. However, the long-term effect of this behavior has changed Chillingworth from a caring, conscientious physician to an obsessed, evil manipulator.

In this chapter, Chillingworth is talking to Hester about his behavior toward Dimmesdale, admitting that he has become a “fiend” because of his evil actions. He sees an image of himself in “his mind’s eye”:

The unfortunate physician, while uttering these words, lifted his hands with a look of horror, as if he had beheld some frightful shape, which he could not recognize, usurping the place of his own image in a glass.

In this case, Chillingworth is imagining his own appearance, knowing that in some way it has changed to match the way he has changed over the years as he secretly works to make Dimmesdale miserable.

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Throughout the novel, Hawthrone develops his description of Chillingworth from an older, weathered man to a twisted, almost demonic cariacature.  Here is a quote after his change:

"But the former aspect of an intellectual and studious man ... had altogether vanished, and been succeeded by a eager, searching, almost fierce, yet carefully guarded look. It seemed to be his wish and purpose to mask this expression with a smile, but the latter played him false, and flickered over his visage so derisively that the spectator could see his blackness all the better for it. Ever and anon, too, there came a glare of red light out of his eyes, as if the old man's soul were on fire and kept on smouldering duskily within his breast..."

Hester sees his twisted features and the determined glint in his eye and immediately believes it is evil, even the devil, shining through on his visage.  She understands at this point the length to which he will go to punish the man he believes to have wronged him by committing adultery with Hester.

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