American Romanticism: The Black Veil

Words: 1169
Pages: 5

Some American Romanticism characteristics that are typical in this story is how Mr. Hooper suddenly starts to wear a black veil. "How strange," said a lady,"that a simple black veil,such as any woman might wear on her bonnet, should become such a terrible thing on Mr.Hooper's face!" Black veils usually represent some secret sin or crime causing many people get surprised when they see the reverend Mr. Hooper wearing it. But what Mr. Hooper wants to throw out in the world for people to understand is the importance that lies in its symbolic value or the value that it has as a moral lesson to all. The black veil usually attracts terror to the hearts of sinners and will hang on to life until the end. The black veil is a strong symbolic device that …show more content…
“The reverend Mr.Hooper suggests that all mortals could cover their faces just as he has because all have some secret sin or sorrow” (Reed, Michael). The black veil is usually a very strong symbol that everyone knows as being something bad especially for a reverend in a christian church. For many people it's known as a bad representation to church and to god. Since it means having caused a sin, the person will have to go to a reverend and be forgiven in order to go to heaven. "If I hide my face for sorrow, there is cause enough," he merely replied; " and if I cover it for secret sin, what mortal might not do the same?" (Page 242). He believes that it makes no difference whether he has a reason to cover his face with a black veil or not. All he wants to do is for people to look at black veils differently, not with the same symbol it has.
The three levels in the parable of understanding the symbolism of the black veil are that no matter what situation you are in you can not hide your sins from god.
"But what if the world wide not believe that it is the type of an innocent sorrow?" urged Elizabeth. "Beloved and respected as you are, there may be whispers that you hide your face under the consciousness of secret sin. For the sake of your holy office,do away this scandal!" (Page
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She thinks that he only put on the veil because he has some secret sin or crime. But to Mr.Hooper the veil is additionally a “symbol.” Mr. Hooper then suggests that all mortals could cover their faces just as he has because we all have some secret sin or sorrow. At the end of the story as he lies dying he says that he sees a veil on all the faces attending his death bed. This is the theme in which he suggests that everyone wears a black veil because everyone has a secret sin or sorrow that is hidden from everyone else and that don't want to show. He thinks that he made his black veil visible while others keep their secrets in their own hearts. The second theme of this story is how to acknowledge one’s secret sin or sorrow exacts a high price. As soon as Mr.Hooper dons the black veil, he is immediately set apart from his parishioners in a very special way. They separate him and no longer accept him among them as they did before he wore the veil. The veil takes him away from his fellow villagers and strikes fear in the hearts of all and causes them to dread his approach and no longer have friendship and companionship from him. Not even can Elizabeth marry him because he decides to make his secret visible and being thus, Mr. Hooper becomes a lonely man. “The Minister’s Black Veil” acknowledges the secrets of their hearts and those who choose to stand apart from their friends and family will often find