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The treatment of Hester worsens after she is displayed on the scaffolding. Her friends abandon her, and she must live in an isolated cottage on the outskirts of town. Even though Hester spends time helping to make clothes for the poor, they treat her badly in spite of her good intentions. She is not just an outcast, but also so low in the opinions of others that even children feel encouraged to make fun of her, even though they have not the faintest clue what she has done wrong (probably they are too young to understand).