In the sexton and the parishioners stood pensively,

In Nathaniel Hawthorne’s short story, “The Minister’s Black Veil,” the main character, Reverend Mr. Hooper, wears a black veil that covers the upper majority of his face. He is first seen wearing the black veil before delivering a sermon. Rumors immediately start circulating among his parishioners about potential reasons for why he is wearing the veil. Frightening every passerby, Mr. Hooper continues to wear the black veil to different events, despite speculations. Ultimately, after repeatedly refusing to remove the crape, Mr. Hooper meets his end, leaving not one soul knowledgeable of the intent behind his actions.The first occasion where Mr. Hooper was seen in the black veil, he was headed to the Milford meetinghouse to deliver a sermon to his parishioners. As Mr. Hooper approached the meetinghouse, the sexton and the parishioners stood pensively, bewildered as to why the preacher was shielding his face with two folds of crape. One woman so displeased with the covering stated: “he has changed himself into something awful, only by hiding his face” (240). Particular individuals of the congregation, so fearful, were forced to leave the meetinghouse during Mr. Hooper’s sermon. That afternoon, Reverend Hooper leads the funeral of a young lady, that is to be held in the meetinghouse. Still wearing the crape, Mr. Hooper’s parishioners see it as an appropriate emblem for the occasion. While saying his last farewell to the deceased parishioner, Reverend Hooper’s veil hangs straight down from his forehead, exposing an uncovered face to the corpse. As if the departed young lady was looking straight into the eyes of Mr. Hooper, he quickly catches the crape. “Could Mr. Hooper be fearful of her glance, that he so hastily caught back the black veil” (242). A witness to the interview did not hesitate to proclaim that the moment Reverend Hooper’s face was revealed, the corpse had shuddered. 


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