Why did john bring flowers in the house?

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pirateteacher eNotes educator| Certified Educator

At the beginning of Act II John brings his wife, Elizabeth, flowers.  He tells her the flowers are to brighten the gloomy room, but judging from the stilted interactions between the couple, the reader can tell that the room is not the only thing that is gloomy.  As the two talk- in short, choppy sentences- we learn that Elizabeth is still upset over Abigail.  John finally erupts telling her that she "forgives and forgets nothing!" and that her "justice could freeze beer."  We realize that he confessed his sins to Elizabeth, but that she has not forgiven his transgressions.  Like a modern day couple, John hopes bringing his wife flowers will help.