Dr. Heidegger ‘s Experiment is a short narrative written by Nathaniel Hawthorne in the nineteenth century. Dr. Heidegger ‘s Experiment is about a physician who claims to hold H2O from the fountain of young person. He so he invites his friends over and conducts an experiment on them. He uses the H2O from the fountain of young person and makes them immature once more, but they break the vase keeping the H2O and it wears off. Nathaniel Hawthorne is an American novelist and author. He is known for his allegorical narratives and first-class use of literary devices. In Dr. Heidegger ‘s Experiment, Hawthorne uses symbolism, fable and word picture to depict how people do n’t larn from their errors.
Hawthorne uses the word picture of Dr. Heidegger to depict how people do n’t larn from their errors. Right before Dr. Heidegger lets his friends drink the H2O from the fountain of young person he says, “ ‘Before you drink, my respectable old friends, ‘ said he, ‘it would be good that, with the experience of a life-time to direct you, you should pull up a few general regulations for your counsel, in go throughing a 2nd clip through the hazards of young person. Think what a wickedness and shame it would be, if, with your peculiar advantages, you should non go forms of virtuousness and wisdom to all the immature people of the age! ‘ ” ( Holt 231 ) . Dr. Heidegger is characterized as uninterested in the how growing immature once more happens, or how the H2O from the fountain works. It is besides revealed that Dr. Heidegger is wise, and is seeking replies about people ‘s behavior and the foolishness of adult male. Dr. Heidegger has the purpose of proving whether if given the chance, will people alter their ways and learn from their errors. After the vase keeping the H2O from the fountain interruptions, Dr. Heidegger says, “ Yes, friends, ye are old once more, ” said Dr. Heidegger, “ and lo! the Water of Youth is all lavished on the land. Well — I bemoan it non ; for if the fountain gushed at my really doorsill, I would non crouch to bathe my lips in it — no, though its craze were for old ages alternatively of minutes. Such is the lesson ye have taught me! ‘ ” ( 235 ) . It is revealed that Dr. Heidegger is funny about whether one will larn from his/her errors of the past. Dr. Heidegger ‘s experiment ‘s hypothesis that people do n’t larn from their errors was proven to be accurate. “ For my ain portion, holding had much problem in turning old, I ‘m in no haste to turn immature once more ” ( 231 ) . Dr. Heidegger is characterized as one who values age and experience which he understands gives him wisdom. He remembers the errors he made in the past and learns from it.
Hawthorne wrote Dr. Heidegger ‘s Experiment as fable, where the four friends taking portion in the experiment base for errors and defects which they do n’t alter, to depict how people do n’t larn from their errors. As Hawthorne introduces the characters at the beginning of the short narrative he writes, “ Mr. Medbourne, in the energy of his age, had been a comfortable merchandiser, but had lost his all by a frenetic guess, and was now small better than a friar ” ( 228 ) . Mr. Medbourne stands for greed. He lost money doing bad concern determinations in the yesteryear. After the four friends transformed into their younger egos, Hawthorne writes, “ Mr. Medbourne was involved in a computation of dollars and cents, with which was queerly intermingled a undertaking for providing the East Indies with ice, by tackling a squad of giants to the polar icebergs ” ( 233 ) . Mr. Medbourne made the same foolish greedy concern ventures once more when he transformed. He has non learned from his errors. As Hawthorne introduces the characters at the beginning of the short narrative he writes, “ Colonel Killigrew had wasted his best old ages, and his wellness and substance, in the chase of iniquitous pleasances, which had given birth to a brood of strivings, such as the urarthritis, and frogmans other tortures of psyche and organic structure ” ( 228 ) . He besides describes Colonel Killgrew subsequently in the narrative, “ Colonel Killigrew ‘s regards were non ever measured by sober truth ” ( 232 ) . Colonel Killigrew stands for dishonesty and wickedness. He was a prevaricator and pursued iniquitous pleasances, such as imbibing and lusting. After the four friends transformed into their younger egos, Hawthorne writes, “ Colonel Killigrew all this clip had been trolling Forth a reasonably bottle vocal, and pealing his glass in symphonic music with the chorus, while his eyes wandered toward the bosomy figure of the Widow Wycherly ” ( 233 ) . Colonel Killigrew is one time once more lusting and imbibing overly when he transformed. He is reiterating the errors he made in the yesteryear. As Hawthorne introduces the characters at the beginning of the short narrative he writes, “ Mr. Gascoigne was a destroyed politician, a adult male of evil celebrity, or at least had been so till clip had buried him from the cognition of the present coevals, and made him vague alternatively of ill-famed ” ( 228 ) . Mr. Gascoigne stands for stagnancy. He failed as politician due to the deficiency of new thoughts. After the four friends transformed into their younger egos, Hawthorne writes, “ Mr. Gascoigne ‘s head seemed to run on political subjects, but whether associating to the yesteryear, present, or hereafter, could non easy be determined, since the same thoughts and phrases have been in trend these 50 old ages ” ( 233 ) . His head ran on the same thoughts and subjects merely as he did in the yesteryear. He did n’t larn from his errors and alteration. As Hawthorne introduces the characters at the beginning of the short narrative he writes, “ As for the Widow Wycherly, tradition Tells us that she was a great beauty in her twenty-four hours ; but, for a long while yesteryear, she had lived in deep privacy, on history of certain disgraceful narratives which had prejudiced the aristocracy of the town against her ” ( 228 ) . Widow Wycherly stands for amour propre and promiscuousness. She was really beautiful and did many disgraceful things which forced her to travel into concealment. After the four friends transformed into their younger egos, Hawthorne writes, “ As for the Widow Wycherly, she stood before the mirror courtesying and smirking to her ain image, and recognizing it as the friend whom she loved better than all the universe beside. She thrust her face near to the glass, to see whether some long-remembered furrow or crow ‘s pes had so vanished. She examined whether the snow had so wholly melted from her hair that the venerable cap could be safely thrown aside ” ( 233 ) . Hawthorne besides writes, “ ‘Doctor, you dear old psyche, ‘ cried she, ‘gets up and dance with me! ‘ ” ( 234 ) . Widow Wycherly is reiterating her compulsion with expressions and amour propre. She is besides non altering her old promiscuous ways. She does n’t larn from her errors. When presenting the characters, Hawthorne besides writes, “ It is a circumstance worth adverting that each of these three old gentlemen, Mr. Medbourne, Colonel Killigrew, and Mr. Gascoigne, were early lovers of the Widow Wycherly, and had one time been on the point of cutting each other ‘s pharynxs for her interest ” ( 228 ) . The three work forces used to contend over Wycherly. This struggle between the characters stands for hatred. After the transmutation, Hawthorne besides writes, “ ‘Dance with me, Clara! ” cried Colonel Killigrew. ‘No, no, I will be her spouse! ‘ shouted Mr. Gascoigne. ‘She promised me her manus, fifty old ages ago! ‘ exclaimed Mr. Medbourne. They all gathered round her. One caught both her custodies in his passionate appreciation another threw his arm about her waist — the 3rd buried his manus among the calendered coil that clustered beneath the widow ‘s cap. Blushing, heaving, fighting, call on the carpeting, express joying, her warm breath fanning each of their faces by bends, she strove to withdraw herself, yet still remained in their ternary embracing ” ( 234 ) . The four of them repeated what happened in the yesteryear and the work forces started contending over Wycherly once more. They all once more did n’t larn from their errors.
Hawthorne uses symbolism of points belonging to Dr. Heidegger to depict how people do n’t larn from their errors. When depicting Dr. Heidegger ‘s survey, it says, “ Between two of the bookcases hung a looking-glass, showing its high and dust-covered home base within a tarnished gilding frame. Among many fantastic narratives related of this mirror, it was fabled that the liquors of all the physician ‘s asleep patients dwelt within its brink, and would gaze him in the face whenever he looked thitherward ” ( 229 ) . The mirror symbolizes Dr. Heidegger ‘s failures as a physician. The mirror reminds him of those failures and he learns from them. After the transmutation and when they are contending over Wycherly, it says, “ Never was there a lovelier image of vernal rivalship, with capturing beauty as the award. Yet by some unusual misrepresentation, having to the dimness of the chamber, and the old-timer dresses which they still wore, the tall mirror is said to hold reflected the figures of three, old, grey, withered grand-sires, laughably postulating for the scraggy ugliness of a dried-up grand-dam ” ( 234 ) . The mirror reveals that they are doing the same errors as they did in the yesteryear and how foolish they are. The mirror symbolizes their repeat of those errors. When first presenting the experiment Dr Hiedegger says, “ ‘This rose, ‘ said Dr. Heidegger, with a suspiration, ‘this same withered and crumpling flower, blossomed five and fifty old ages ago. It was given me by Sylvia Ward, whose portrayal hangs yonder ; and I meant to have on it in my bosom at our nuptials. Five and 50 old ages it has been treasured between the foliages of this old volume. Now, would you hold it possible that this rose of half a century could of all time blossom once more? ‘ ” ( 230 ) . Dr. Heidegger kept this rose as a reminder of his errors in his relationship with his dead married woman. It symbolizes Dr. Heidegger ‘s erudite lessons of the yesteryear. Besides in the description of Dr. Heidegger ‘s survey, it says, “ In the obscurest corner of the room stood a tall and narrow oaken cupboard, with its door ajar, within which dubiously appeared a skeleton ” ( 229 ) .The skeleton symbolizes people ‘s refusal to larn from their errors and as a consequence being internally dead. The skeleton being kept in the cupboard reveals that Dr. Heidegger has past atrocious errors that he now learns from.
The use of the literary devices word picture, fable and symbolism by Hawthorne magnificently reveals the subject of the narrative, which is that people do n’t larn from their errors. Hawthorne characterizes Dr. Heidegger as wise and seeking replies about people ‘s behaviour. Dr. Heidegger ‘s existent purpose of the experiment was to happen out whether his friends will larn from their errors. Dr. Heidegger ‘s Experiment is written as an fable. The four friends taking portion in the experiment base for the errors of the yesteryear which stay unchanged. Mr. Medbourne represents greed, Colonel Killigrew represents dishonesty and wickedness, Mr. Gascoigne represents stagnancy, and Widow Wycherly represents amour propre and promiscuousness. The three work forces ‘s struggle over Widow Wycherly represents hatred. Items owned by Dr. Heidegger typify different facets of larning from errors. The mirror represents Dr. Heidegger ‘s errors as a physician and the repeat of error. The rose symbolizes Dr. Heidegger ‘s erudite lessons of the yesteryear. The skeleton symbolizes Dr. Heidegger ‘s errors and besides people non larning from their errors.