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“From forth the fatal loins of these two foes A pair of star-crossed lovers takes their life; Whose misadventured piteous over throws Doth with their death bury their parents strife. ” ‘Romeo and Juliet,’ a play of death marked love. Yet is the love presented realistic and believable? As important as love is to life and existence, the play is wholly based on love and its many forms.
The time in history in which ‘Romeo and Juliet’ is set, contributes to the play, and creates a realistic situation. Arranged marriages and marrying young plays a strong part in the play.
This historical context goes against our modern society making the understanding of the play difficult for a modern audience to comprehend. Family relationships in the play are variable. The relationship between Capulet and lady Capulet is one of leadership, for example; “A crutch, a crutch! Why call you for a sword? ” This question is spoken by lady Capulet and directed towards Capulet.
It gives the effect that she has power or leadership over him. But in response Capulet over rules her question, which creates a sense of competition with leadership; “My sword I say! Old Montague is come and flourishes his blade in spite of me.
” To show lady Capulet and Capulets love for each other they agree over Juliet’s sudden out burst over her arranged marriage to Paris.
One occasion in this scene Capulet speaks to lady Capulet; “Soft! Take me with you, take me with you, wife. ” Montague and lady Montague do not compete with each other and their son Romeo. Lady Montague says; “thou shalt not stir one foot to seek a foe. ” She does not want any violence, and shows concern for her husband. Friendship is a strong variant of love in this play; it results in death and many consequences. The strongest impression of friendship is when Romeo avenges Mercutios death.
Romeo and Mercutio were good friends. This is shown in their conversations. “I thought all for the best”. This is when Mercutio was stabbed and Romeo is saying how he tried to stop the fight. Romeo says this quotation as if he feels guilty and is trying to obtain forgiveness. There is a conflict here between love/loyalty to friends/relations and love for each other. Romeo and Juliet’s love is the most important in the play. When they first see each other they fall in love. From here on they make many references to love and death and a strange sense of tragedy to come.
An example of this is after their night together, when Romeo must leave, Juliet says: – “Methinks I see thee, now thou art so low, As one dead in the bottom of a tomb. Either my eyesight fails, or thou lookest pale. ” This means that Juliet suddenly sees Romeo dead meaning a terrible tragedy is waiting to occur. Romeo and Juliet fall in love so instantly the audience will be unsure whether their love is true. It is not actually obvious whether it is true or not, but the ending may hold some answers. When Romeo finds Juliet ‘dead’ he can see no other reason why he should live and Juliet feels the same when she wakes up to find Romeo dead.
They kill themselves because the other is dead, but whether this is true love or they only think it is love, is not clear. In a way this does not matter, because the love is doomed. It is better that they die at the end of the play so it leaves the audience remembering the romance and passion and not the every day things. The dramatic irony of Romeo and Juliet’s love sets up tension for the audience in the beginning, showing love hand in hand with death. This makes their love special in the audience’s view: “I take thee at thy word. Call me but love, and I’ll be new baptized. Henceforth I never will be Romeo.
” The consequences of love in this play, play a strong part in portraying the characters feelings. One such part is when Romeo has killed Tybalt and the consequence is Romeo being banished. This only happened because Romeo and Mercutio were good friends and Romeo had to take revenge. The consequence of the ‘star-crossed lovers’ results in death for Romeo and Juliet, part of the dramatic irony for the audience. The party scene is where Romeo and Juliet first meet. This scene, I believe is one of the most important, as this is where their tragic end stems from. “Is she a Capulet? O dear account!
My life is my foe’s debt. ” This quotation is spoken by Romeo shortly after talking with Juliet. He says that his life is his enemy’s debt. His enemy is the Capulet family. When he finds out she is a Capulet his love for her reveals itself; otherwise her being a Capulet would not have worried him. The party scene is the scene that the audience dread. This is because they know their love will end in tragedy and so, they do not want Romeo and Juliet to meet. “Thus with a kiss I die. ” “There rust, and let me die. ” Romeo and Juliet’s last words, expressing desperation and last resort.
The audience would feel emotional at the tragic end of the two ‘ star crossed lovers’ but realise how strong their love was. And there they die in Italy. Revenge, love and passion are the true cause of their love. “For never was a story of more woe Than this of Juliet and her Romeo. ” The Prince rounds up the play and he emphasises how important Romeo and Juliet’s love was. Their love brought a new friendship between the Montagues and Capulets. Their love caused many misunderstanding, but it will always be remembered as a classic. “A TRAGIC TALE OF WOE. “