The Maypole of Merry Mount
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The Maypole of Merry Mount By: Natalie Scigliano Author: Nathaniel Hawthorne
Setting & Plot: The Maypole of Merry Mount takes place on June 23, Midsummer's Eve, in the late 1620s. On this eve, the people of Merry Mount gather to celebrate the marriage of the Lord and Lady of May. During the celebration, the puritans come in protest of the celebration because of the people of Merry Mount's dancing.
Characters: In this story, Edgar and Edith are the Lord and Lady of May who come together at the maypole to be married. Endicott is the leader of the puritans, and Peter Palfrey is his assistant. Also, there are the people of Merry Mount who dance around the maypole during the celebration. There are also puritans who accompany Endicott and his assistant.
The bigger conflict takes place during the wedding ceremony. During the festival, Endicott shows up in protest to the unethical dancing and actions. Endicott orders the people of Merry Mount to be captured and whipped. In all of this chaos, Peter Palfrey supports Endicott in his orders.
Conflict: In this story, there are two conflicts, one big and one small. The small conflict is that Edith is not truly in love with Edgar. When he hears this, Edgar is filled with sadness and considers committing suicide.
Solution: After Endicott cuts down the maypole and orders the people to be whipped, he looks over to Edith and Edgar only to be surprised by Edgar. Edgar stands up to Endicott and begs for his bride to be freed. In response to his plea, Edith cries out "Be it death, and lay it all on me!". Once Endicott sees the couple's love for each other, he calls of the whippings.
Conclusion: In the end, Endicott realizes that the couple's love is extremely unique and comes to the conclusion that the two can adjust to reform. He then decides to throw a wreath over their heads. when he does this, Edgar and Edith realize that they do not need all the vanities of Merry Mount. Edgar and Edith then follow Endicott and the puritans, seeing that they should live a more simple life without vanities.
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