Quotes from "Young Goodman Brown"

By Paxton

"'Faith kept me back awhile,' replied the young man, with a tremor in his voice, caused by the sudden appearance of his companion, though not wholly unexpected."

Faith literally represents his Christian faith and to a certain extent his faith in humanity. His faith had made him hesitant to deal with the devil, but he had gone against it and left it back at home.

"Such company, thou wouldst say," observed the elder person, interrupting his pause. "Well said, Goodman Brown! I have been as well acquainted with your family as with ever a one among the Puritans; and that's no trifle to say. I helped your grandfather, the constable, when he lashed the Quaker woman so smartly through the streets of Salem. And it was I that brought your father a pitch-pine knot, kindled at my own hearth, to set fire to an Indian village, in King Philip's War. They were my good friends, both; and many a pleasant walk have we had along this path, and returned merrily after midnight. I would fain be friends with you, for their sake."

The elder man represents the Devil in this story. I think this quote is an important clue to that. He says that he had helped Goodman's forefathers, but he had only helped them in situations involving violence or bloodshed.

"'The devil!' screamed the pious old lady. 'Then Goody Cloyse knows her old friend?' observed the traveller, confronting her, and leaning on his writhing stick."

I chose this quote, because it's the moment when the Goodman Brown's eyes are starting to see the real magnitude of the situation. The devil-worshippers aren't always who you would think they were.

"The young man sat a few moments by the road-side, applauding himself greatly, and thinking with how clear a conscience he should meet the minister, in his morning-walk, nor shrink from the eye of good old Deacon Gookin."

I chose this quote because it shows how innocent he still is. He thinks that he's done so well resisting the Devil, but the Devil is not so easily defeated.

"'Mighty well, Deacon Gookin!' replied the solemn old tones of the minister. 'Spur up, or we shall be late. Nothing can be done, you know, until I get on the ground.'"

This shows that once again Goodman Brown has been deceived. Even the deacon of the church is united with the devil.

"'With Heaven above, and Faith below, I will yet stand firm against the devil!' cried Goodman Brown."

Goodman Brown is perseverant. He refuses to succumb to the Devil's ways even if the whole town stands against him.

"'Faith!' shouted Goodman Brown, in a voice of agony and desperation; and the echoes of the forest mocked him, crying --'Faith! Faith!' as if bewildered wretches were seeking her, all through the wilderness"

Goodman Brown is searching desperately for his Faith. He is searching for her both literally and figuratively, as he is starting to lose faith in his village.

"Ha! ha! ha!" roared Goodman Brown, when the wind laughed at him. "Let us hear which will laugh loudest! Think not to frighten me with your deviltry! Come witch, come wizard, come Indian powow, come devil himself! and here comes Goodman Brown. You may as well fear him as he fear you!"

Goodman Brown has lost it. He is angry. They have stolen his Faith and he will have his vengeance upon them!

He paused, in a lull of the tempest that had driven him onward, and heard the swell of what seemed a hymn, rolling solemnly from a distance, with the weight of many voices. He knew the tune; it was a familiar one in the choir of the village meeting-house. The verse died heavily away, and was lengthened by a chorus, not of human voices, but of all the sounds of the benighted wilderness, pealing in awful harmony together.

He heard a hymn that he knew from church ringing through the woods. As he got closer, it twisted in to a terrible medley of night time sounds. It reinforces the duality between the church and the Devil.

"But, where is Faith?" thought Goodman Brown; and, as hope came into his heart, he trembled.

As he arrives in the meadow and sees all the evil around him all he can think of is his Faith. He hopes and prays that she is still there and is afraid of what could have happened to her.

"Faith! Faith!" cried the husband. "Look up to Heaven, and resist the Wicked One!"

This is the last quote during the night time scene. It shows that even in his darkest hour his faith in God lives on. This quote also causes some ambiguity, because we don't know if Faith listened to him or not. Did she turn to the Devil?