There’s a big question in the end of The Scarlet Letter, and it’s if the main characters Hester, Dimmesdale, and Chillingworth had grasped forgiveness in the end. There’s multiple theories about this ambiguous ending. One of said theories explains that they had not been forgiven in the end. This had a supporting moment in the book which showed Hester asking Dimmesdale if they had been forgiven and he had no answer. This will be the topic discussed in this essay now let’s go into further detail about these theories and if our characters have truly earned forgiveness. Our main characters had actually gained forgiveness in the end. Although a big argument to the opposite of this is when Hester asked Dimmesdale (the town priest) if they were forgiven and he had no answer.
“Wilt thou yet forgive me?” she repeated, over an dover again. “Wilt thou not frown? Wilt thou forgive?” They had done one of the worst sins possible, adulturay, “But this had been a sin of passion, not of principle, nor even purpose.” This would be a good point if the story ended there. All three of them redeemed themselves at the end of the end of the story. Dimmesdale carves the A in his chest and (partially) confesses to what he has done. Chillingworth leaves Pearl all of his money when he died despite her origin. He treated the child of the man he hated and the woman he once loved very well for who she is. Hester did something that no one would have asked her to do after she returned to New England.
She put her Scarlet Letter back on. They all performed something at the end of the story that gave them redemption. These tasks gave them the freedom of forgiveness.
After all of these acts of redemption it’s actually pretty easy to tell. Hester’s is forgiven for living out her punishment till the end and taking care of the consequences of her sin. Dimmesdale is forgiven for in the end finally confessing his sin to the whole town and others. Then finally Chillingworth is forgiven for forgiving Hester for what she had done and helping Pearl have an amazing life.
In the end I believe all the main characters in the story have served their redemption for their sins.