The Crucible Respect and Reputation Quotes
How we cite our quotes:
PROCTOR: 1 have three children-how may I teach them to walk like men in the world, and I sold my friends? DANFORTH: You have not sold your friends- PROCTOR: Beguile me not! I blacken all of them when this is nailed to the church the very day they hang for silence! DANFORTH: Mr. Proctor, I must have good and legal proof that you- PROCTOR: You are the high court, your word is good enough! Tell them I confessed myself; say Proctor broke his knees and wept like a woman; say what you will, but my name cannot – DANFORTH, with suspicion: It is the same, is it not? If I report it or you sign to it? PROCTOR – he knows it is insane: No, it is not the same! What others say and what I sign to is not the same! DANFORTH: Why? Do you mean to deny this confession when you are free? PROCTOR: I mean to deny nothing! DANFORTH: Then explain to me, Mr. Proctor, why you will not let- PROCTOR, with a cry of his whole soul: Because it is my name! Because I cannot have another in my life! Because I lie and sign myself to lies! Because I am not worth the dust on the feet of them that hang! How may I live without my name? I have given you my soul; leave me my name! DANFORTH, pointing at the confession in Proctor's hand: Is that document a lie? If it is a lie I will not accept it! What say you? I will not deal in lies, Mister! Proctor is motionless. You will give me your honest confession in my hand, or I cannot keep you from the rope. Proctor does not reply. Which way do you go, Mister? His breast heaving, his eyes staring, Proctor tears the paper and crumples it. (IV.284-294)
Proctor is unwilling to blacken his friends’ reputations – and he clings to his own reputation for loyalty and integrity. So he throws his confession away.