Scaffold I am as content to die for Gods eternal truth on the scaffold asin any other way (Bookshelf), John Brown, a U.S. abolitionist in 1859, saidin a letter to his children on the eve of his execution. The scaffold is araised wooden framework or platform used for public speaking. It is similar to astage or a framework. A scaffold is also a platform used in the execution ofcondemned prisoners, as by hanging or beheading.
A scaffold can also be a raisedplatform, seat or stand used for the purpose of exhibiting persons or actions tothe public view (Webster’s). A scaffold, similar to a stage, platform orframework, can be permanent. Other types of permanent scaffolds are used inbridges. The basic beam bridge, a simple beam over a span, is strengthened byadding support piers underneath and by reinforcing the structure with elaboratescaffolding called a truss. This method of scaffolding is clearly apparent inmost present day bridges, but most travelers do not even realize this fact. Thescaffolding includes the huge poles or wires that sit on top of the bridge; thissuspension is an extremely advanced scaffold. This method is sometimes also usedin suspending a roof. Scaffolds, however, can also be temporary.
A scaffold isalso a temporary platform, usually suspended on poles from below or suspendedfrom above, on which workers sit or stand during the erection, repairing ordecoration of a building. For instance, construction workers stand on scaffoldswhen building a new structure. Scaffolding allows workers to transportthemselves and their materials up and down an unfinished building duringconstruction. Also, a person cleaning the windows of a building must use ascaffold to reach all the windows above ground.
Michelangelo used a scaffold topaint the frescoes on the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel in Rome (Groiler’s). Heworked on a scaffold sixty feet above ground, which covered 10,000 square feetof surface. Another type of temporary scaffold is used in boating and fishing. Aflake is a scaffold lowered over the side of a ship to support workers orcaulkers when they are either fishing or drying the captured fish (Webster’s).The ancient Egyptians can be considered the first people to use temporaryscaffolding. The entrance to the Great Pyramid is fifty-five feet above groundlevel. The entrance was intended for use only once, during King Khufusfuneral (Groilers).
Special scaffolding was erected so the coffin could beplaced inside the pyramid. The scaffolding was then dismantled as a safetymeasure against grave robbers. Scaffold can also be used as a verb. To scaffoldcould mean to prop up. For instance, new titles may be scaffolded with laws.That is, laws will support the titles. Another, every day, yet connotative, useof the word scaffold would mean to execute.
A person who is scaffolded isexecuted. Scaffold usually denotes a negative, punishing aura when it is used asa verb. As a verb, scaffold is not often used and is a word from early America.Thus, the word can have many different meanings. The scaffold plays an importantdenotative role in many books, movie and plays. One such book is The ScarletLetter. The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne is a story of a young woman,Hester Prynne, living in Puritan dominated Salem, Massachusetts, who commitsadultery. The man with whom she engages in the affair is one of the townsReverends, Mr.
Dimmesdale. Hester and Dimmesdale have a baby, Pearl. Hestershusband, Roger Chillingworth, who was missing for two years, returns to findHester being punished for cheating on him.
Hester Prynne passed through thisportion of her ordeal, and came to a sort of scaffold (51), Hawthorne tellsin the opening seen of the novel. In The Scarlet Letter, the scaffold acts as aplace for punishment. This scaffold constituted a portion of a penal machine,which now, for two or three generations past, has been merely historical andtraditionary among us, but was held, in the old time, to be as effectual anagent in the promotion of good citizenship, as ever was the guillotine,Hawthorne states in explaining the scaffolds use. The scaffold had wooden stepsleading on to it.
The steps of the scaffold became the walk of death for manypeople before they were beheaded. A balcony or open gallery stood over theplatform and was attached to the meetinghouse. During Hesters punishment, theministers and Governor sat in the gallery in order