The Crucible

Defind of Crucible

What does the Crucible mean?


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A crucible is a kind of bowl used to heat up chemicals or metals in alchemy.

Philosophically, the term crucible can refer to activities that are very difficult, but act as a refining or hardening process.

So its a place where something is refined or purified through difficulty or heat.

in those terms you can see the significance of the title in relation to John Proctor who is "purified", well regains his integrity and standing in the town, by refusing to confess.

You can also see how the town itself acts as a sort of crucible, events "heat up" so quickly that soon the town decends in to madness, yet by the end we hope that the town has been cleansed, but we realise that it is the individuals who stand up for themselves and the truth that receieve the true redemption.


Crucible, a noun defined as; a container of metal or refractory material employed for heating substances to high temperatures, in the traditional sense but, it also means a severe, searching test or trial. The latter of the two definitions is exactly what Arthur Miller had in mind when he wrote the play, The Crucible. The play set in Salem Massachusetts during the start of the infamous Salem Witch Trials, is about the struggle to discover truth within the twisted and brutal lies flying about the little town, started mainly by a young girl by the name of Abigail Williams.