The Crucible is a play that tells a fictionalized history of the Salem Witch Trials. It takes place in Salem, Massachusetts, in the year 1692. Interestingly, the play was written by Arthur Miller who was falsely accused of communism during the McCarthy era of American politics in the 1950s. McCarthyism is perhaps the best modern example of the hysteria found during the Salem Witch Trials.
Mary admits that the behavior of all of the girls, including Abigail, is a hoax. They are not legitimately bewitched but are merely pretending to be. She is brought to the court by John Proctor to tell this to Danforth. However, Danforth doesn't take it seriously. Mary is too intimidated by Abigail and cannot go on with her testimony.