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Though Rebecca Nurse's involvement has already been corroborated by other confessors, Danforth demands to hear it from John to confirm that John is fully committed to renouncing his supposed ties to Satan.
Once there have been enough convictions, the reputations of the judges also become factors.
They are extremely biased towards believing they have made the correct sentencing decisions in court thus far, so they are reluctant to accept new evidence that may prove them wrong.
The petition he presents to Danforth is used as a weapon against the signers rather than a proof of the innocence of Elizabeth, Martha, and Rebecca.
Abigail's version of events is held to be true even after John confesses to their affair in a final effort to discredit her.
The classic example of an incorrect use of irony is in Alanis Morisette's song "Ironic" when she says that "rain on your wedding day" is an example of irony. Sure, you don't expect or want rain, but it's not the polar opposite of getting married.
A real example of irony would be if two married guests got into a fight about going to your wedding that ended in their divorce.
Danforth, Hathorne, and Parris become even more rigid in their views when they feel they are under attack.
No one will listen to Tituba until she agrees to confirm the version of events that the people in traditional positions of authority have already decided is true, a pattern which continues throughout the play.
And he goes to save her, and, stuck two inches in the flesh of her belly, he draw a needle out." (Cheever pg. The idea that a witch's familiar spirit is capable of stabbing people is too scary for the superstitious and now hysterical people of Salem to give Elizabeth the benefit of the doubt.
No one even considers Mary's statement about sticking the needle in herself.