When the court is in session, Giles Corey interrupts and says that Thomas Putnam is 'killing his neighbors for land', since he accused George Jacobs of being a witch and says he has evidence to back it up. Judge Hathorne, Deputy Danforth, Hale and Parris join Giles and Francis in the vestry room to discuss the accusation.
Mary Warren and Proctor enter, Mary testifies that Abigail and the girls are faking everything involved with witchcraft. Danforth is shocked with this accusation. Judge Hathorne has a gavel which symbolizes the power he has in court.
My wife cannot lie.
Proctor gives a petition signed by 91 people which says what good people Elizabeth, Rebecca, and Martha Corey are. Proctor then presents a statement from Giles Corey where Corey testifies that Thomas Putnam told his daughter to make accusations against George Jacobs so Putnam could take up Jacobs’ land. Giles with wrath refuses to tell who gave him this information, so he is arrested for contempt of court.
I have been hurt, Mr. Danforth; I have seen my blood runnin' out!
Abigail and the other girls enter the courtroom. Abigail denies Mary’s testimony. Mary maintains her assertion that the girls are only pretending. Hathorne asks Mary to pretend to faint for them, but Mary can't. She is pressured into saying that she only thought she saw spirits.
Proctor calls Abigail a whore, then confesses his affair with her and explains that Elizabeth fired her because of it. He claims that Abigail wants Elizabeth dead so she can take her place. Danforth orders Abigail and Proctor to turn their backs, and Elizabeth enters who is said to never lie by Proctor. Danforth questions Elizabeth about the affair, but she lies trying to protect her husband, not knowing he confessed. Irony is seen here because she was trying to protect the reputation of John.
Danforth pressures Abigail to be truthful. Abigail claims to see a bird that she insists is Mary Warren’s spirit that is attacking her. This is verbal irony because Abigail is describing herself as the victim, which she is not. The other girls follow Abigail’s lead and gang up on Mary. Mary breaks down under the pressure and confesses that John forced her to work for the Devil. Proctor is arrested. The yellow bird in the courtroom symbolizes spirits.