What were the two ceremonies that Mr. Hooper directed on the same day that he began to wear the veil?  

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favoritethings eNotes educator| Certified Educator

First, Mr. Hooper officiates at a funeral service for a young woman.  There, his veil was "an appropriate emblem," because it, too, seems solemn and somber and thus matches the mood of the funeral.  Also, black is a color often associated with death and mourning, so it is appropriate for that reason as well.  One old superstitious woman thinks that, as he leaned over the deceased girl and the veil fell slightly away from his face so that the girl could have seen his face if she were alive, the body of the dead girl actually shuddered.

Next, Mr. Hooper officiates at a wedding ceremony.  The presence of the veil here seems completely inappropriate and incongruous to the occasion.  The sight of it makes the "bride's cold fingers" quiver "in the tremulous hand of the bridegroom, and her deathlike paleness caused a whisper that the maiden who had been buried a few hours before was come from her grave to be married."  In short, Mr. Hooper's veiled face fairly terrifies the young couple and casts a pall of gloom over the entire proceedings.  Finally, he catches sight of his own reflection and is so overcome with its horrors that he drops his wine and runs out into the night.

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The Minister's Black Veil

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