‘Romeo and Juliet’ is a tragic love story set in Verona, Italy. The play centres around two youths that fall in love despite they are from rival families which ends in their ‘untimely deaths’. Written by William Shakespeare this play is a classic that has been turned into films and set on stages around the world.
Two of the plays main themes are love and hate, these are two universal themes that are still relevant today and in Act 1 Scene 5 both of these themes can be found, combined to make an effective piece of drama.
Act 1 Scene 5 is set in the Capulet Household during a masker’s ball and in the beginning of this scene Capulet is encouraging his guests to dance, and ordering his servants around ‘more light you knaves’ trying to be a good host. In Elizabethan times a ball like this was one of the best ways to show of your wealth and because Capulet is a rich man from a rich family Shakespeare’s audience would have been expecting a lavish party with music, dancing and so would of Capulet’s guests, so Capulet is trying hard to get his party going. In this part of the scene the mood has changed from the ‘public brawl’ and Romeo’s lovesick depression, now everyone is busy rushing around trying to make sure the party runs smoothly.
Romeo And Juliet Act One Scene 5
After Capulet manages to get people dancing, we see him reminiscing about his youth with a cousin we move onto Romeo’s first sight of Juliet. This is truly a case of love a first sight as Romeo is transfixed by Juliet’s beauty and proclaims he ‘ne’er saw a true beauty till this night’ however the audience might just dismiss this as a mix infatuation and lust rather then true love, because just moments before Romeo confessed his unrequited love for Rosaline and swore to Benvolio he would only ever love her and couldn’t even think about looking at other girls. So hasty declaration might shock the audience However this is a significant moment in the play as its here when Romeo first sets his eyes on Juliet and from this moment the rest of the play unfolds. Shakespeare manages to get the audience involved, because they know it’s a tragedy from the prologue, and that Romeo and Juliet can’t fall in love.
Just after Romeo’s speech Tybalt, a Capulet recognizes Romeo’s voice and the audience knows that something is about to happen. From previous scenes they also know that Tybalt is a troublemaker and a vicious fighter as he ‘hates all Montagues’ and wouldn’t easily back down from a fight. Tybalt’s aggressive and hostile language contrasts with Romeo’s language. Tybalt is speaking in verses but it couldn’t be more different from Romeo’s romantic, poetic language about Juliet. Tension is built in this part of the scene as Tybalt demands his sword ‘To strike him dead I hold it not a sin’, this somewhat forceful language might shock Elizabethan audience, with Tybalt threatening to disturb the ball. However Capulet intervenes, still playing the good host, he asks what’s wrong with Tybalt. When he explains Romeo’s gate crashing Capulet forbids Tybalt to do anything that will ‘make a mutiny’ amongst his guests. Tybalt’s