The House of the Seven Gables
115 Derby St.
Shows: “Spirit of The Gables,” “Legacy of the Hanging Judge”
Oct: 31: Continuous performances, 7:15 to 10 p.m.
Admission: $15 for adults, each show; $27 combination ticket
Secrets, hidden truths
“God will give you blood to drink,” the ghost of Matthew Maule warns visitors to “Spirit of the Gables.” “Confess or be damned!” Judge John Hathorne scolds visitors to “Legacy of the Hanging Judge.” Two theatrical performances make for a chilling visit to The House of the Seven Gables . The dramas link the guilt and shame that haunted novelist Nathaniel Hawthorne. “Spirit,” based on Hawthorne’s novel inspired by the brooding house, recreates the bad blood between the Maule and Pyncheon families. Characters cast their long, dark shadow over the house. “Death is the course of the Pyncheons!” warns Clifford Pyncheon, the insane elderly man who lives in the attic, after spending decades in prison for a murder he did not commit. A few yards away, in the house where Hawthorne was born, “Legacy” laments the writer’s great-great-grandfather’s role as a judge in the infamous Salem Witch Trials of 1692. “Hath you a contract with the devil?” the judge sternly asks visitors. In dark rooms, girls accused of witchcraft dare you to “sign the devil’s book.”