"The Birthmark" Abridged Version for Easier Reading
has everything that makes "The Birthmark" a great story but puts it in language that reluctant readers can understand. I condensed the story to 7 pages and left a space between each paragraph for an easy reading format. The story keeps much of Hawthorne's original wording, but I have deleted unnecessary parts and rephrased difficult wording. Nathaniel Hawthorne was quite a wordy fellow!
Example of original text:
In the latter part of the last century there lived a man of science, an eminent proficient in every branch of natural philosophy, who not long before our story opens had made experience of a spiritual affinity more attractive than any chemical one. He had left his laboratory to the care of an assistant, cleared his fine countenance from the furnace smoke, washed the stain of acids from his fingers, and persuaded a beautiful woman to become his wife. In those days when the comparatively recent discovery of electricity and other kindred mysteries of Nature seemed to open paths into the region of miracle, it was not unusual for the love of science to rival the love of woman in its depth and absorbing energy. The higher intellect, the imagination, the spirit, and even the heart might all find their congenial aliment in pursuits which, as some of their ardent votaries believed, would ascend from one step of powerful intelligence to another, until the philosopher should lay his hand on the secret of creative force and perhaps make new worlds for himself. We know not whether Aylmer possessed this degree of faith in man's ultimate control over Nature. He had devoted himself, however, too unreservedly to scientific studies ever to be weaned from them by any second passion. His love for his young wife might prove the stronger of the two; but it could only be by intertwining itself with his love of science, and uniting the strength of the latter to his own.
Example of the abridged version:
There was a man of science, who left his laboratory to the care of an assistant, and persuaded a beautiful woman to become his wife. In those days it was not unusual for the love of science to rival the love of a woman. Aylmer had devoted himself too much to scientific studies ever to be weaned from them by any second passion. His love for his young wife might prove the stronger of the two; but it could only be by intertwining itself with his love of science.
You will love this abridged version for your struggling students because it has all the important parts without the complicated language.
This is in PDF format.
• "The Birthmark" Complete Unit - Nathaniel Hawthorne
• "The Birthmark" Free Copy of Story by Nathaniel Hawthorne
• "The Birthmark" Test - Nathaniel Hawthorne
• "The Birthmark" Thinking Stations - Nathaniel Hawthorne
• "The Birthmark" by Nathaniel Hawthorne ABRIDGED Story, Reading Guide, Test
• "The Birthmark" by Nathaniel Hawthorne VOCABULARY
• Romanticism Bundle
• Romantic or Transcendental? FREEBIE
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