“Romeo and Juliet” is a tragic love story famous for it structure and use of language in the play. The play is set in “Verona Italy” Essay Introduction
The play is about to families equal in most ways who had a grudge for a very long time “from ancient grudge break to new mutiny”. Throughout the story “Shakespeare” doesn’t give any indication of how the grudge started, he only clearly says that the families had a grudge at the beginning of the play in the prologue, which Shakespeare would reed to the audience of the play. The two families’ names are CAPULATE and MONTEGUE. The story begins a prologue which was set out as a sonnet with an iambic pentameter which Shakespeare used to summarize the story.The play starts with a street brawl between the servants of the two families in the markets of Verona. Shakespeare started the first few lines with a pun “Gregory, on my word, will not carry coals.
No, for then we should be colliers. I mean, and we be in cholar, we’ll draw.” Shakespeare used three words in three consecutive lines which sound the same but have different meanings. This is a pun (play on words), the play has many puns and sonnets, some sonnets are also written with an iambic pentameter. Shakespeare has an amazing capability of being able to have all these sounds in his head and be able to write a sentence which makes absolute sense and have exactly ten syllables at the same time. Shakespeare gives us four main points about the story In the prologue.The first is that there are two households (families) “two house holds”.
The second is that the play is set in Verona Italy “In fair Verona where we lay our scene.” The third point is there is a grudge between the two families “from ancient grudge break to new mutiny.” The fourth point is that the two main characters will die “A pair of star crossed lovers take their life’s.” These points help to inform the audience about the story.After the street brawl “Romeo” the only son o the Montague’s runs into his cousin “Benvolio” who had earlier seen him moping and in despair. Benvolio talks to Romeo and gets him to talk about why he is so sad. Romeo tells Benvolio he is in love with a woman called “Rosaline” but she won’t return his love. Benvolio tells Romeo to forget about Rosaline and look for other women.At the same time a kinsman of the “Prince”, “Count Paris” seeks to marry “Juliet” the only daughter of Capulet and so goes to him and asks for her hand in marriage, Capulet willingly agrees but tells him to wait two years since she still hasn’t even turned fourteen yet.Romeo and Benvolio stumble across a Capulet servant who was baring a list of the people who were to be invited to a feast at the Capulets residents. Benvolio saw this as a chance for Romeo to meet a girl and forget Rosaline so Benvolio suggested to Romeo that they gatecrash the party, but Romeo only agrees because he read Rosaline’s name on the list of invitations.
That night Romeo accompanied by his two companions Benvolio and “mercutio” got to the Capulets feast. As soon as Romeo enters the room his eyes fell on Juliet and instantly falls in love. A Capulet called “Tybalt” spots the Montegues and decides to attack them but he was stopped by Capulet knowing that if Tybalt attacks the Montegue’s the feast would be spoilt. Benvolio and Mercutio leave Romeo behind as he speaks with Juliet and even kisses her even though the pair don’t even know each others names, Romeo exchanges vows of love with Juliet.Soon after Romeo rush’s to his confessor “Friar Lawrence” and asks him to carry out a marriage ceremony between him and Juliet, Friar Lawrence agrees in hope that it would end the long running feud between the two families.Up till this point in the play all seems to be going well for Romeo and Juliet but in the following scene thing will take a turn for the worst for the love struck pair. The play is reaching its climax as we reach the half way point of the play which is act 3 scene 1.
What happens in the scene to come will add a sudden dramatic twist to the story.As Mercutio and Benvolio are walking along on a sunny day Benvolio suggests to Mercutio that they go indoors “I pray thee, good Mercutio, let’s retire”, fearing that if they come across Capulets a brawl is imminent. Tybalt accompanied with a few of his friends comes across Benvolio and Mercutio. Tybalt asks to speak to one of them but angered by Tybalts demand and starts ridiculing him “Consort! What, dost thou make us minstrels? An thou make minstrels of us, look to hear nothing but discords: here’s my fiddlestick; here’s that shall make you dance. Zounds, consort!”.Romeo enters the scene, Tybalt turns his attention to Romeo and challenges him to a bout, but Romeo declines, telling him he has good reason to love him “I do protest I never injur’d thee; But love thee better than thou canst devise Till thou shalt know the reason of my love: And so good Capulet,-which name I tender As dearly as mine own,-be satisfied”. Mercutio is very angered and annoyed by Romeo’s decline to Tybalts challenge and says that he will challenge Tybalt in Romeos place. Mercutio draws his sword fights Tybalt. Romeo jumps in the middle of the dulling pair to restore peace but Tybalt stabs Mercutio under Romeo’s arm. Mercutio dies cursing the two families blaming them for his death “A plague o’both your houses” he also says while still pouring blood “Ask for me tomorrow and you shall find me a grave man”.Mercutio said “grave man” which has two meanings, the first is serious and the second is grave. So he means that tomorrow he will be dead in a grave. Romeo proclaims that his love for Juliet has made him weak and that he should of fought Tybalt. Tybalt comes to Romeo and the two begin to fight. Romeo kills Tybalt, Benvolio pleads with Romeo telling him to flee. Romeo was very shocked at the events that had just occurred and cries “O, I am fortunes fool”. When Romeo said “fortunes” he meant fate. So the events that had occurred were his fate. He called himself a “fool” because he felt that his fate was bad.The Prince enters the scene and Benvolio gives an account of what had just happened emphasising Romeo’s attempt to maintain peace. But “lady Capulate” says Benvolio is lying to protect Romeo. The Prince announces that Romeo is exiled from Verona and if found in the city he would be killed.There was tension building up which lead to the brawl. The event that built up the tension where Romeo Benvolio and Mercutio gate crushing the Capulates feast which out-raged Tybalt who was very protective of his families’ honour and reputation. There was also the brawl at the beginning of the play. The fact that Mercutio teased Tybalt when he asked to speak to one of them also built up the tension. At the time when the play was written the world was dominated mainly by men and honour and reputation always played a hug role to a mans status. There where n courts or laws to settle feuds. Instead there where brawls and fights.Mercutio is a very clever brave and witty person. Mercutio had many puns and jokes in his speech just for fun. He appeared in many of the scenes throughout the play sometimes dominating them. In my opinion, Mercutio is the only one who didn’t blame fate for his death.Romeo is a very intense and deep character. He is not only intense and deep in loving but in other feelings too. His love was not as authentic as his love for Juliet. He loved Juliet so much that he said the most intense and touching love poems ever written.Shakespeare gave hints to the audience about the time of the day the scene was supposed to be in, for example in act 3 scene 4 Romeo asked for a torch to indicate that its dark. Shakespeare also put fights into the play when he felt that the audience was getting bored or losing their interest, so a fight would grip their attention.After the fight of act three scene one Romeo was banished from Verona. Juliet had no news of what Romeo had done. Juliet’s “nurse” tells Juliet had killed her kinsman. She decides to go with Romeo. That night Romeo sneaks into Juliet’s room and at last they consummate their marriage. The next morning the lovers separate unsure if they will ever see each other again.Juliet hears that her father intends for her in just three days because of the events that had happened “marry my child next Thursday morn”. Unsure on what to do she asks the nurse for some advice, the nurse tells Juliet to marry Paris and forget Romeo had ever existed. Juliet was angered by the nurse’s advice and decides to go to Friar Lawrence for advice instead. Friar Lawrence devised a plan that would allow Juliet to escape with Romeo. Friar Lawrence gave her a potion that would make her appear to be dead. If she is dead she will be laid in the family’s crypt and Romeo would retrieve her when she is alone. That night when she returned home she learned that she was getting married the following day, she decided to drink the potion.The nurse discovered her believing that she is dead. The next morning she was laid in the crypt according to the plan. Friar Lawrence’s letter explaining the plan to Romeo never reached him and he only hears that Juliet is dead. He decides to take his own life rather than live without Juliet, he buy a poison from an Apothecary and makes his way to Juliet’s crypt. This shows the level of love that Romeo had for Juliet. When he gets to Juliet’s crypt he finds Paris scattering flowers on Juliet’s crypt. Romeo kills Paris and finds Juliet lifeless. Soon after Juliet wakes to find Romeo dead, at the same time Friar Lawrence enters the crypt. He hears the watch coming; he tries to persuade Juliet to live with him. She kisses Romeos poisoned lips but she didn’t die so she sinks his dagger into her heart.The watch arrives followed by the Prince, Capulate and Montegue. Montegue announces that lady Montegue has died of grief seeing their children dead side by side. Capulate and Montegue declare that the feud has ended. Gold statues of Romeo and Juliet are placed in a newly peaceful “newly peaceful” Verona.