Thomas Putnam

Main motivation
To get back at the village for all the resentment of his past ancestry. eg his brother in law was rejected from becoming a minister
Main conflict
Giles Corey accused Putnam of accusing his daughter, Betty, to cry witchcraft upon George Jacobs because if George was to
die, Putnam would get his property because he could afford it and according to law, Jacob would forfeit his land.
Greedy, deeply embittered, selfish, thinks he is intellectually superior, arrogant, very resentful, vindictive, conniving
Effect on plot
Giles Corey accused Putnam of accusing his daughter, Betty, to cry witchcraft upon hi son, leading Giles to be arrested under contempt. Giles refusal to confess ‘Aye’ or ‘Nay’ prompted, in a way, Proctor’s final decision, all because of Thomas Putnam’s vindictive vengeance and greed for land.
“This man is killing his neighbours for their land”. Giles Corey “Thomas Putnam felt his own name and
honour of his family had been smirched by the village, and he meant to right matters, however he could”.
Pointing at the whimpering Betty, that is a notorious sign of witchcraft afoot, Goody Nurse, prodigious sign!”
Role in the conflicts
Putnam enhances the conflict as he accuses a lot of people and acts as a witness to the witchcraft, and will not admit his cunning plan to get more land.
  • Readiness to believe in witchcraft; a guiding hand behind the initiation of conflict
  • Frustrated in his role in the community – couldn’t control the Salem ministry – wanted his brother-in-law
  • Wants to manipulate the community – frustrated in his efforts by Proctor and Parris – community conflict
  • He seizes the opportunity to:
    • Condemn Parris who he hates
    • All those in Salem who had failed to recognise his self-appointed authority
    • A man totally without conscience; uses his daughter to condemn neighbours
    • In a conflict, ruthlessness by an individual to perpetuate a conflict is necessary