In The Crucible, identify who says, "I've heard you to be a sensible man, Mr. Hale. I hope you'll leave some of it in Salem."

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Ashley Kannan eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The line in which Hale is said to have a sensibility about him that needs to be left in Salem is said by John Proctor. Upon meeting Reverend Hale, Proctor's words are spoken in the presence of Giles Corey.  Proctor's words speak to a couple of elements that are reflective of what is happening in Salem at the time.  The first is that Proctor's words articulate how there is a sense of madness descending upon Salem.  The fear of witches and the potential for such outbreak amongst all of Salem's citizens is a reality that has besieged the town.  People like Proctor and Rebecca Nurse are some of the few remaining members of the coalition of the sane and reasonable that are repelling this emotional contagion. Proctor's words articulate how there is a lack of sensibility in Salem and how this must be remedied immediately before terrible realities happen.

The other significant aspect of Proctor's words are how they speak the need for an outside authority.  Hale is introduced as an outsider, one who has the training and intellectual understanding that can cut through some of the superstition and fear that has a hold on Salem.  When Proctor speaks of him being a "sensible man," it is a direct statement that the only hope for Salem at this point is to appeal to outsiders that will be able to assist in the distillation process in delving towards the origins of what is happening in the town.  Proctor's words speak to the need for an outsider and calmer heads to prevail in a growing sense of emotional contagion.

crisdee | Student

John Proctor said that quote in Act One of The Crucible to Mr. Hale. His words reveal Proctors' concern that the people of Salem and their fear of witchcraft are making them descend into a state of madness.