The House of the Seven Gables

Nathaniel Hawthorne
Summary

Chapters 13–14

Summary Chapters 13–14

The story also introduces a number of close parallels between Holgrave and the Maule family that have been largely dormant until now. Like Holgrave, the younger Matthew Maule is an artist, and though he is a tradesman by profession, Alice is primarily struck by the artistry evident in Maule’s craft. Even more obviously, Holgrave shows the same hypnotic capabilities as the younger Maule, and he ends his story in much the same state as his protagonist does when his spell is over, elated that his subject is now under his spell. Although Maule clearly does not have Gervayse’s best intentions in mind when he casts his spell, he is pleasantly surprised by the power he has over Alice, and his ultimate grief over her death suggests he is not fully aware of the extent of his power. Holgrave’s intentions appear to be purer, but he too is not entirely aware of his abilities. Though he is tempted by the fact that Phoebe has fallen under his spell, it does not appear to be his goal in telling the story. It is important that Holgrave does not follow through on his newfound power—his connection to the Maules remains murky, but he seems to be exercising the willpower necessary to break family patterns.