Analysis of “The Hollow of the Three Hills”

Hawthorne’s short story is organised around two narrative strategies: the description of the setting and events, on the one hand, and the dialogue between and old woman and a young lady. What is the effect achieved by this yuxtaposition?

Choose one instance of the first narrative technique and analyse how an atmosphere of mystery is constructed.

This entry was posted in Senior 4 2016 and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to Analysis of “The Hollow of the Three Hills”

  1. agustinsegura says:

    IN THOSE strange old times, when fantastic dreams and madmen’s reveries were realized among the actual circumstances of life, two persons met together at an appointed hour and place. One was a lady, graceful in form and fair of feature, though pale and troubled, and smitten with an untimely blight in what should have been the fullest bloom of her years; the other was an ancient and meanly-dressed woman, of ill-favored aspect, and so withered, shrunken, and decrepit, that even the space since she began to decay must have exceeded the ordinary term of human existence. In the spot where they encountered, no mortal could observe them. Three little hills stood near each other, and down in the midst of them sunk a hollow basin, almost mathematically circular, two or three hundred feet in breadth, and of such depth that a stately cedar might but just be visible above the sides. Dwarf pines were numerous upon the hills, and partly fringed the outer verge of the intermediate hollow, within which there was nothing but the brown grass of October, and here and there a tree trunk that had fallen long ago, and lay mouldering with no green successor from its roots. One of these masses of decaying wood, formerly a majestic oak, rested close beside a pool of green and sluggish water at the bottom of the basin. Such scenes as this (so gray tradition tells) were once the resort of the Power of Evil and his plighted subjects; and here, at midnight or on the dim verge of evening, they were said to stand round the mantling pool, disturbing its putrid waters in the performance of an impious baptismal rite. The chill beauty of an autumnal sunset was now gilding the three hill-tops, whence a paler tint stole down their sides into the hollow.

    How do supernatural elements work?

    in this story supernatural elements create an atmosphere of tension and darkness. this makes this place look like a hunted, ancient place where they used to make some rites and now they continue with this rites.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *