The Crucible act one questions and answers

When and where is the play set? Salem, Massachusetts, 1692
What does Abigail confess to Reverend Parris? that they were dancing
What is wrong with Betty Parris? she won’t wake up
For whom does Abigail work? Whose niece is she? Abigail used to work for John Proctor’s family; for the last seven months, she hasn’t worked anywhere. She is Reverend Parris’s niece.
For whom does Mercy Lewis work? the Putnams
For whom does Mary Warren work? the Proctors
How do Reverend Parris’ parishioners feel about him? Most fear him because ministers hold such power, so they try to stay on his good side.
What is John Proctor’s attitude towards Parris? he thinks he’s greedy
What were the girls doing in the woods with Tituba? They were dancing, singing and playing at preparing charms. Abigail drank chicken blood.
Thus far, which people feel that witchcraft exists and which do not? Reverend Parris, the Putnam’s do; Corey Giles questions why is wife reads so much and wonders what she is reading. Rebecca Nurse and John Proctor do not believe in it and Rev. Hale doesn’t know what to believe, yet.
What does it mean when Betty can’t stand to hear the Lord’s name? To those who believe in witchcraft, it means that she is possessed by the Devil and that is why she can’t stand to hear the Lord’s name. In reality, she is probably feeling guilty over her actions and her shame at disobeying her religion’s tenets is exacerbated when she hears His name.
Who is John Hale? Why has he come to the Parris home? He is a minister from Beverly, Massachusetts and is widely educated about witchcraft and the unknown world. He has come to see if witchcraft is being practiced in Salem.
What is the conflict between Putnam and Proctor about? Basically John Proctor dislikes Thomas Putnam. Proctor feels that Putnam is land hungry and professes that acreage abutting his neighbors is his when it isn’t. Proctor also thinks Putnam feels that the Putnam family name should be revered and that the man uses it to gain power.
What does Mrs. Putnam believe caused the death of her seven children? She thinks that they were murdered by the Devil through his followers in Salem.
What are Parris’ feelings toward his congregation? He fears their rejection of him judges those who do not follow their religion exactly how he preaches it.
Why do Tituba and the girls call out names at the end of this act? What does Tituba confess and why? they fear the truth will come out
Why did Mrs. Putnam send her daughter, Ruth, to see Tituba? to ask what happened to her babies
Why would the Devil want Reverend Parris’ daughter? He wants to show that he has power over God’s men on earth.
What does Giles Corey say disturbs him about his wife? How is Corey described? He is upset that his wife reads so much and won’t tell him the names of the books.
According to Miller, what caused the witch-hunts? How does he describe the witch-hunts? He feels that a number of reasons are behind witch-hunts, but that basically people fear what they don’t understand. This makes them insecure about their own beliefs or places in society, so are quick to condemn peoples’ thoughts or actions. Also, many people are suspicious of their neighbors if the latter don’t believe and act as they do. Also, some people, like Putnam and Parris (and Senator Joseph McCarthy) are power-hungry. Miller describes both the Salem and the McCarthy witch-hunts as “periods of terror and persecution.”

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