Washington, DC, sometimes referred to as the Capitol[citation needed], is a city in The Handmaid's Tale. It is the capital of Gilead where the head of the regime resides[1], and it was the capital of the United States of America prior to the Gilead takeover[2].

Handmaids in D.C.Edit

As the center of Gilead, it is home to a large number of Handmaids numbering in thousands. Capitol Handmaids are subject to the newest reforms of the caste, wearing more sleek overalls while also utilizing a new uniform. This new uniform consists of a "ring" that pierces the mouth for silence, with a "veil" used to conceal the lower mouth and neck from exposure. Washington is also the source of the newest household aesthetic, being progressively required to meet new national standards and rolled out throughout the nation.[3]


In the PastEdit

Before GileadEdit

Washington, DC is not mentioned in the story prior to the terrorist attacks.

D.C. AttacksEdit

see President's Day Massacre (main article)

After the TakeoverEdit

The Washington Monument is converted from an obelisk to a massive cross. The former Union Station was destroyed "for the glory of Gilead" and rebuilt since it "was designed by a heretic" according to Aunt Lydia. The statue of Abraham Lincoln at the Lincoln Memorial had its top half blasted off with only his fist and feet still intact. The commemorative text behind it and on the surrounding walls was chiseled off completely.[1]

Present: Season ThreeEdit

Household Edit

The Waterfords head to Washington, DC to participate in a public prayer in order to coerce the Canadians to returning Nichole to Gilead.

After confronting Serena Joy for betraying her over Nichole, June visits the Lincoln Memorial where the statue of Abraham Lincoln has been beheaded. She touches her head against the desecrated statue staring at it before donning her cap and mask before joining the Waterfords for the public prayer.


  1. 1.0 1.1 Episode 3.6, Household
  2. June (Episode)
  3. Season 3, Episode 6 Household
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