The House of the Seven Gables Author:Nathaniel Hawthorne Afterword by Edward C. Sampson. — "God will give him blood to drink!" An evil house, cursed through the centuries by a man who was hanged for witchcraft, haunted by the hosts of its sinful dead, wracked by the fear of its frightened living... — Four Pyncheons play a part inside the blighted house: Hepzibah, an elderly recluse; Clifford, her feeble... more »-minded brother; Phoebe, their young country cousin...and Jaffrey, a devil incarnate whose greedy quest for secret wealth is marked by murder and terrible vengeance from a restless grave.
The puritanical Colonel Pyncheon is the embodiment of Hawthorne's own great grandfather, a judge at the Salem witch trials; the gloomy, gabled house typifies his own depressing home. It is this masterful blending of the spiritual and symbolic that allows Hawthorne's haunted house to stand firm where many a weaker one has fallen.« less