Romeo and Juliet notes (analysis of whole play)

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Romeo and Juliet
`Two households, both alike in dignity' - The two households are displayed as equal
`In fair Verona (where we lay our scene),
`From ancient grudge break into new mutiny' ­ A war ­ long term hatred ­ each is trying to overthrow the other
`Where civil blood makes civil hands unclean' ­ The people are civil but their hands are becoming unclean will the
blood they have spilt over fighting with each other
`From forth the fatal loins of these two foes' ­ Two children are born, one within each household ­ destiny and fate
`A pair of star-crossed lovers take their life' ­ Their love was written in the stars (destiny) ­ The stars don't want
them to be happy ­ they are against them as soon as their lives begin
`Whose misadventures piteous overthrows' ­ They have a tragic life
`Do with their death bury their parents' strife' ­ With their death the parents arguments are buried
`The fearful passage of their death-marked love' ­ Their love is tainted with death
`And the continuance of their parents' rage'
`Which but their children end nought and remove'
`Is now the two hours traffic of our stage'
`The which if you with patient ears attend'
`What here shall miss, our toil shall strive to mend'
Act 1 scene 1:
Gregory and Sampson are having a joke about being servants
They have a twisted sense of humour
Very derogatory and sexist approach to women ­ they are very cynical ­ `thrust his maids to the wall... I will be civil
with the maids; I will cut off their heads... the heads of the maids or their maidenheads'
The light comedy at the beginning is for the audiences sake ­ to make it fun and comic so that they are
interested in the play
Also the comic rivalry between the two lowest servants shows how deep the rivalry is ­ it goes so deep that
it is even amongst the servants
The servants start to fight, then Benvolio (a Montague) arrives at the scene and wants peace but then Tybalt
(Capulet) arrives and wants to fight
Soon their fighting attracts the attention of the Lords and Ladies of each household who also come out to fight
The Prince finally has to come and he tells the families that if they `disturbed the quiet of our streets' again then their
`lives shall pay forfeit of the peace'

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The Montagues then question Benvolio about Romeo's whereabouts and you learn of his upset and melancholy ­
Lady Montague says that `Adding to clouds more clouds with his deep sighs'
Benvolio then promises that he will find out why Romeo is so unhappy.
Benvolio asks Romeo why he is sad and Romeo confesses that he is in love with a girl called Rosaline, but he is `out of
favour where [he is] in love' (Rosaline doesn't love him back).…read more

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Act 1 scene 3
Opinions on marriage
Juliet ­ Juliet does not want to get married (she is only thirteen). This is shown by the fact she thinks `it is a honour that
I dream not of' ­ She does not think about it, she is not hurry to get married. Juliet isn't enthusiastic about finding a
Lady Capulet ­ Lady Capulet feels Juliet should get married, she wants Juliet to marry Paris.…read more

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She stands out as `a snowy dove trooping with the crows' ­
she stands out as the most beautiful and everyone else is completely below her.
Her beauty is untouchable ­ `beauty too rich for use'
`For I ne'er saw beauty before till this night' ­ Her beauty opens Romeo's eyes and he seems to have forgotten
Rosaline.…read more

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Act 2 scene 3
Romeo visits Friar Lawrence, who is glad to hear Romeo is no longer infatuated with Rosaline ­ Romeo `I have forgot
that name' Friar Lawrence ­ `That's good my son'
Friar Lawrence quickly learns a new woman has taken her place ­ Juliet
Nevertheless he agrees to help arrange the marriage, so that he can unite the two families (this is the only reason
why Friar Lawrence agrees ­ he thinks it will end the fighting with the love).…read more

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Act 2 Scene 4 ­
Benvolio and Mercutio are looking for Romeo after he left them the night before (the balcony scene)
We know that they think that Romeo has fought with Tybalt as they have heard that he wants to carry out the threat
he made the night before at the party when he knew Romeo was there.
Benvolio thinks that Romeo will accept the challenge and fight Tybalt
`Alas, poor Romeo, he is already dead...…read more

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Romeo then replies that `love-devouring Death do what he dare' because `one short minute' with Juliet is greater
than sorrow that might follow it ­ Romeo foreshadows his own death and tragedy ­ `do what he dare' ­ he is almost
daring with death to do something terrible because he thinks that his love is greater
The Friar then days that these `violent delights have violent ends' ­ we know that Romeo and Juliet's daring and
`violent' love for each other does cause them to…read more

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Romeo then sums up the tragedy and foreshadows then end ­ `This day's black fate on moe days doth depend, This
but begins the woe others must end' ­ Romeo knows that this days `black fate' will begin the tragedy to come (and
he is right)
Romeo - `And fire-eyed fury be my conduct now! Now, Tybalt, take that `villain' back again' ­ Romeo seems to make
all his rash decisions on the emotion he feels at the time ­ emotions lead him ­ conveys…read more

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Act 3 Scene 3
In Friar Lawrence's cell ­ Romeo and Friar Lawrence talk ­ Friar Lawrence `A gentler judgment vanished from his lips:
Not body's death but body's banishment'
Romeo says that banishment is worse than death `be merciful say death' ­ this mirrors the response that Juliet gave ­
they are both hyperbolic and dramatic
`There is no world without Verona walls, But purgatory, torture, hell itself' ­ saying that Verona is heaven on earth
and everywhere else is hell
`O rude unthankfulness'…read more

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Lady Capulet tells her that she is crying because the villain who `slaughtered' Tybalt is still alive ­ Juliet however
shows her maturity and intelligence by replying that `no man like he doth grieve my heart' ­ her mother thinking she
means he has made her grieve for Tybalt ­ but actually Romeo has made her grieve because of her love for him
She dominates her conversation with her mother and her mother has no idea that she is proclaiming her love for
Romeo under…read more


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