Summary of Young Goodman Brown


Please note! This essay has been submitted by a student.

Download PDF

Exposition: Young Goodman Brown sets out to fulfill an “evil deed” which his wife, Faith, does not know about. Faith tells him of nightmares she’s been having but instead of staying, Goodman tells her to pray and go to sleep. Wearing pink ribbons on her cap, Faith bids Goodman farewell.

Conflict: When Goodman Brown arrives in the forest, he meets an Old Man, who has an uncanny resemblance to himself. The Old Man tries to persuade him to join him by using Goodman’s forefathers as leverage, saying that they are good friends and that he used to help them in their “wicked ways.” It becomes clear that the Old Man is the devil as he offers to lend Goodman his walking stick, which had the likeness of a serpent. Goodman protests the Devil’s claims, resists his temptations and insists he goes back to his Faith.

Essay due? We'll write it for you!

Any subject

Min. 3-hour delivery

Pay if satisfied

Get your price

Rising action: They come across Goody Cloyse, an old woman who Goodman recognizes as the woman who taught him lessons of the Bible. He hides so she won’t see him and is shocked when he overhears her confirm that the Old Man is the Devil and reveal that she is a witch. She further explains that she was on her way to a ceremony wherein two new converts will be welcomed to join the dark side.

Climax: Goodman is shocked when he sees people he wouldn’t have even suspected to be evil, such as the Minister and the Deacon, show up in the forest to worship the devil. Overwhelmed by all of this, he looks up at the bright blue sky. When he sees a pink ribbon floating down from a branch, he cries, exclaiming “My Faith is gone!” as he realizes that even his beloved wife who he thought of as the embodiment of virtue has followed the path of evil.

Falling action: Goodman finds a large group of people gathered around a huge fire. He hears them chant twisted versions of holy hymns while getting ready to welcome the two new converts. A veiled woman is then led beside Goodman in front of the fire. And once the veil is removed, the woman is revealed to be Faith. As the two are about to get converted, Goodman desperately screams for Faith to resist temptation and look to the heavens.

Resolution: Suddenly, the sun has risen and Goodman finds himself waking up in the middle of the forest. Was it all just a dream? He runs back to the village and finds himself unable to look at the village the same. He is disgusted by the sight of everyone he had seen in the forest, including Faith, still wearing her cap with the pink ribbons, who he refused to talk to ever again. After that night, he lived his life in paranoia and despair until he died a sad and lonely old man. 

writers online
to help you with essay
banner clock
Clock is ticking and inspiration doesn't come?
We`ll do boring work for you. No plagiarism guarantee. Deadline from 3 hours.

We use cookies to offer you the best experience. By continuing, we’ll assume you agree with our Cookies policy.