Why won't Proctor go to court to expose Abby's lies when he first hears about the trial?

Expert Answers
appletrees eNotes educator| Certified Educator

John Proctor doesn't want to publicly accuse Abigail of lying because it would make him appear to be a hypocrite. He lied to his wife Elizabeth about his sexual relationship with Abby, and so in order to maintain his integrity he decides not to confront Abigail's lies in court. He is also concerned that Abby would mention their relationship, which would cause Proctor and his wife public embarrassment. Because Proctor is dealing with the difficulty of earning his wife's forgiveness, he doesn't at to complicate his marriage any further.