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pohnpei397 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Hester Prynne is the central character in this book.  She is the one who has committed adultery and had a child because of it.  This has gotten her in trouble and she has been sent to prison.  At the beginning of the book, she is just about done with her prison term and she is being forced to wear the "scarlet letter" as a further punishment.

The rest of the novel is largely about the difficulties she faces because of her adultery and how she overcomes these problems.  By the end of the book, she has regained her good name and is an important member of the community.

mkcapen1 | Student

Hester Pyrne is the protagonist in the book "The Scarlet Letter."  She is married to a doctor older than her.  They are moving to a new area and he sends her ahead of him.  She has a sexual encounter with the local Reverend Dimmsdale.  She becomes pregnant.  Her husband, Roger Cullingsworth, is still away.  She is brought before the townspeople on a scaffold where her sins are told.  She is forced to wear the scarlet letter A on her clothing so all will know her sin.  She is also an excellent seamstress and makes a living supporting herself despite that no one will associate with her.  She raises her daughter, Pearl, by herself among the people who condemn her.  She has self-pride despite the way others perceive her. 

jacobadam01 | Student

Hester Prynne, the young protagonist of Nathaniel Hawthorne's novel The Scarlet Letter, is a woman condemned by her Puritan neighbors. The character has been called "among the first and most important female protagonists in American literature.

Read the study guide:
The Scarlet Letter

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