Romeo and Juliet - The Prologue

View mindmap
  • Romeo and Juliet - The Prologue
    • "a pair or star-cross'd lovers take their life"
      • They are so consumed by their love they stop acting as individuals
      • By the end of the play, the lovers have power over their actions and have overcome the constraints of conflict but still could not fully escape to love happily
      • The lovers cannot escape their destiny, their fate has already been written
      • Elizabethan superstition and Shakespeare's belief in fate
    • Poignant imagery
    • "doth with their death bury their parents' strife"
      • Death brings the start and end of the conflict - shows emotive/ power of love
    • Prologues are common in Greek tragedy but unusual in Shakespeare's plays
    • In sonnet form - 14 lines broken into 4 quatrains: 3 with 4 lines and the last with 2 lines
      • Used for love poetry and in iambic pentameter
        • Hints this play is about love - a popular form in 16th century, often explores themes as love in conflict
    • "death-mark'd love"
      • oxymoronic
      • love cannot survive with/without death
      • Even from the beginning, their love and romance has been tainted by the fact they are both going to die.
      • The love they have cannot escape death
      • Love is intertwined with hate - a paradox - love ends and starts hate
    • Fate - no point delaying the truth
    • "both alike in dignity"
      • same social status - both upper class and noble so wealth is not a cause of the strife - curiosity for readers?
    • setting the scene = gives away plot, lack of suspense, prepares audience for tragedy
    • creates a sense of fate - provides audience with knowledge they they will die before the play has begun
      • audience carry this knowledge throughout the play with opinions and expectations
    • "from forth the fatal loins of these two foes"
      • due to their family conflict, their children's love could never survive
      • their love was doomed from the moment they were born
    • Establishes themes of fortune and destiny to set out from the start that the lovers are involved in a tragedy.
    • "civil blood makes civil hands unclean"
      • this story is not a 'one off' conflict bringing about love. It is ongoing, current and unavoidable
      • the love and hate is not just confined to families - it affects society - allows other threats to appear such as patriarchy in society and reputation
    • "ancient grudge"
      • ongoing, buried in their blood and history
      • emotive
      • "break to new mutiny"
        • a new rebellion against very long conflict - love is the only thing strong enough to overcome it
        • authority/ morality
        • antithesis - an old grudge bringing about new problems
    • "break to new mutiny"
      • a new rebellion against very long conflict - love is the only thing strong enough to overcome it
      • authority/ morality
      • antithesis - an old grudge bringing about new problems
    • pivotal moment
      • establishes themes of fortune/ destiny /fate etc.
      • allows for dramatic irony, lack of suspense but curiosity for how hate transforms into love
      • outlines plot
      • prepares for drama and destiny is determined
      • sense of sympathy for protagonists from audience - death is inescapable
    • LINKS TO THE REST OF THE PLAY

Comments

No comments have yet been made

Similar English Literature resources:

See all English Literature resources »See all Romeo and Juliet resources »