A fictionalised account of the 1692 Salem witch trials.
ut the widow herself was a privileged person; her known goodness of heart (the effects of which had been experienced by many) gave her the liberty of speech which was tacitly denied to many, under penalty of being esteemed ungodly, if they infringed certain conventional limits. And Captain Holdernesse and his mate spoke out their minds, let who would be present. So that, on this first landing in New England, Lois was, as it were, gently let down into the midst of the Puritan peculiarities; and yet they were sufficient to make her feel very lonely and strange.
The first subject of conversation was the present state of the colony--Lois soon found out that, although at the beginning she was not a little perplexed by the frequent reference to names of places which she naturally associated with the old country. Widow Smith was speaking: 'In county of Essex the folk are ordered to keep four scouts, or companies of minutemen; six persons in each company; to be on the look-out for the wild Indians, who are for
A moving story about a courageous young woman who keeps her integrity in the most difficult of circumstances.
A rather dull story of the Salem witch trials, centering around 18-year-old Lois Barclay, an orphan from England. Detailed and expository, it reads more like a report than a story, and lacks Gaskell's usual charm.