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Meanwhile, a crowd of townspeople has gathered to watch her humiliation and hear a sermon.Her husband, Roger Chillingworth, has just returned and is in the outskirts of the crowd.As though to taunt him, a great meteor burns through the dark sky, illuminating the scaffold, the street, and the houses.
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The first scaffold scene, which occurs in Chapters 1-3, focuses on Hester and the scarlet letter.
She stands on the scaffold with quiet defiance, holding her baby in her arms.
Hester Prynne and Reverend Dimmesdale experience very different life trajectories after their affair.
Hester's pregnancy with her much beloved daughter, Pearl, makes any secrecy of the affair impossible.
He escapes the diabolical clutches of Chillingworth who, without his victim, shrivels and dies.
But he also triumphs over the evil that has overwhelmed him as he publicly confesses his part in Pearl's birth.
Her lover, Arthur Dimmesdale, shares her platform but not her public humiliation. The townspeople are present to pass judgement, just as they will be in the final scaffold scene.
Hester stands alone with Pearl in her arms, a mere infant and sign of her sin.