The Scarlet Letter

chapter 8

Describe how Dimmsdale has changed since Hester's public punishments

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Arthur Dimmesdale remains silent through Hester's public humiliation. His rapid physical deterioration represents the intense guilt that is eating at his soul. In chapter eight, Dimmesdale looks gaunt and sickly. Dimmesdale steps forward with his hand over his heart, again hiding the scarlet letter which he feels upon his breast. It looks as if his own heart could give out at any minute.