Flaws are seen in many people and no one person is perfect. Everyone is made to be unique with different physical aspects as well. People may fall in love because of one’s personality or looks, but it is their choice to fall in love with a person even if the person has a flaw. In Nathaniel Hawthrone’s “The Birthmark”, Alymer’s strive for perfection is contributed by the symbolism of Georgiana’s birthmark, Alymer’s want to get the birthmark removed, and Georgiana’s submission.
Georgiana’s face has a hand shaped birthmark that later in the story comes out to symbolize mortality. The birthmark “expressed the ineludible gripe in which mortality clutches the highest and purest earthly mould (226-227).” This quote depicts the mortality of Georgiana taken away later in the book. The narrator says birthmark was “the symbol of his wife’s liability to sin, sorrow, decay, and death (227).” This representation of the birthmark shows that Alymer may not like the birthmark itself, but maybe he thinks that his wife is indeed human and is able to have flaws. Alymer still wants her to be perfect both physically and mentally.
Soon after, Aylmer begins to obsess over the birthmark that “shocks him, as being the visible mark of earthly imperfection (225).” The birthmark of Georgiana is an imperfection that has been part of her, but the birthmark is defect that “grows more and more intolerable with every moment of their united lives (226).” Couple days after their marriage, Alymer asked Georgiana if she’s considered removing her birthmark, which upsets Georgiana. Alymer can’t look past the birthmark of Georgiana’s, even after they get married. He believes that the birthmark is “the symbol of his wife’s liability to sin (227).” Alymer believes that the mark on her face is a sin that will be there and won’t be looked past her beauty. Not letting Alymer ignore the birthmark, he begins to think of ways to remove the birthmark.
Alymer wants Georgiana to remove the birthmark and so Georgiana does, but because she can’t stand the fact that it bothers Alymer and changes the way he looks at her. “Danger is nothing to me; for life, -while this hateful mark makes me the object of your horror and disgust (228).” Georgiana isn’t afraid of anything and she will do whatever it takes for her husband to look at her without seeing the birthmark. With the quote it seems that she knows that she may die, but she’ll do anything for her husband to look at her. Georgiana doesn’t care of what needs to be done she wants it gone or she wants her life to be taken away. Alymer tries everything, but nothing works. There is one thing that he has, but it is dangerous. Georgiana reassured him that “there is but one danger (233)”, which is the birthmark. Once Georgiana said that Alymer went on and made the concoction to get the birthmark removed. Georgiana drinks the final potion and the birthmark begins to fade and that’s where she said her last words, “I am dying (235).” Georgiana makes sure that Aylmer doesn’t feel guilty of what he has done and that even though he couldn’t look beyond the birthmark he had the right intentions regardless.
In Nathaniel Hawthorne’s “The Birthmark”, Alymer’s strive for perfection is contributed by the symbolism of Georgiana’s birthmark, Alymer’s want to get the birthmark removed, and Georgiana’s submission. The birthmark is a symbol of death and an imperfection that Alymer want to destroy. Alymer’s want of the removal of the birthmark is what determines him in the story to remove the birthmark so it won’t hinder on Georgiana’s beauty. Georgiana finally accepting the process of removal of the birthmark is what Alymer wanted for her to be perfect.