Romeo and Juliet Examples of Techniques (AMC)

The Prologue

Chorus:

‘The fearful passage of their death-mark'd love’

In the prologue we learn the ‘star crossed lovers’ are destined to share a ‘death mark’d love’ so we know that they are doomed from the outset but they do not, this creates some dramatic irony.

1 of 40

Act 1 Scene 1

Benvolio:

‘I will make thee think thy swan a crow’

Bird imagery. By comparing Roasline to a 'swan' he may suggesting that, whilst she is beautiful, she may also be arrogant and conceited. Contrasting the white 'swan' and black 'crow' implies that he may find her to be ugly and annoying, like the crows in the farmer's field. 

2 of 40

Act 1 Scene 1

Romeo:

‘O brawling love! O loving hate!’ 

Oxymoron. As 'brawling' and 'love' are opposite emotions and equally 'hate' cannot be 'loving' this is an oxymoron. This represents the conflict in Romeo who does not want to take any part in the family feud.

3 of 40

Act 1 Scene 1

Romeo:

‘O heavy lightness, serious vanity/ Misshapen chaos of well-seeming forms!/ Feather of lead, bright smoke, cold fire, sick health’ 

Oxymoron. This is used to show Romeo's inner conflict because he loves someone who does not love him back.

4 of 40

Act 1 Scene 2

Benvolio:

'Take thou some new infection to thy eye, And the rank poison of the old will die.’

Foreshadowing. It turns out that Benvolio is right; as soon as Romeo sees Juliet all of his love for Rosaline disappears.

5 of 40

Act 1 Scene 3

Lady Capulet:

‘That book in many's eyes doth share the glory’ 

Metaphor. She compares Paris to a book in this extended metaphor. Books were valuable in Elizabethan times and not only were a symbol of wealth and education but also contain knowledge. This is very flattering comparison for Paris and suggests he is a worthy partner for Juliet.

6 of 40

Act 1 Scene 4

Romeo:

'Is love a tender thing? It is too rough, too rude, too boisterous, and it pricks like thorn'

Simile. Shakespeare uses a lot of similes in Romeo’s speech, perhaps to suggest a more sensitive poetical nature in line with his romantic character.

7 of 40

Act 1 Scene 4

Benvolio:

‘Scaring the ladies like a crow-keeper’ 

Simile. Perhaps linking to the bird imagery in Benvolio's earlier speech.

8 of 40

Act 1 Scene 5

Lord Capulet:

‘He bears him like a portly gentleman’ 

Simile. Capulet warns Tybalt against fighting with Romeo, suggesting that he has a good character, a 'gentleman'.

9 of 40

Act 1 Scene 5

Romeo:

'Shows a snowy dove trooping with crows'

Bird imagery. He contrasts the white 'dove', representing Juliet, with the black 'crows' to show how she is above all other women. The use of 'crow' again as representing negative attributes reinforces our earlier interpretation. However, the white bird here is not the arrogant 'swan' but the 'dove', symbolising love and peace.

10 of 40

Act 1 Scene 5

Juliet:

‘My only love sprung from my only hate! Too early seen unknown, and known too late! Prodigious birth of love it is to me, That I must love a loathed enemy.’ 

Dramatic Irony. The audience knows before Juliet that Romeo is a 'loathed enemy'.

11 of 40

Act 1 Scene 5

Juliet:

‘Go ask his name: if he be married.
My grave is like to be my wedding bed.’

Foreshadowing. She means that if Romeo is married, she will die unmarried, because she will never marry another, but she is also unknowningly foreshadowing her fate, in which her grave does become her wedding bed. 

12 of 40

Act 1 Scene 5

Romeo:

'It seems she hangs upon the cheek of night/Like a rich jewel in an Ethiope's ear'

Shakespeare uses a lot of similes in Romeo’s speech, perhaps to suggest a more sensitive poetical nature in line with his romantic character. The exotic imagery here of an Ethiope's ear-ring is particularly poetical. 

13 of 40

Act 2 Scene 1

Mercutio:

‘I conjure thee by Rosaline's bright eyes, By her high forehead and her scarlet lip’

Dramatic irony. When Romeo sneaks off to the Capulet orchard after the party, Benvolio and Mercutio suggest that Romeo is off with ‘Rosaline's bright eyes’, but we know he is now in love with Juliet.

14 of 40

Act 2 Scene 2

Juliet:

‘It is too rash, too unadvised, too sudden/Too like the lightning, which doth cease to be/Ere one can say 'It lightens.'

Simile. The balcony scene is full of similes. The poetry enhances the romance of this scene. Perhaps showing how passionate and impulsive they are being here.

15 of 40

Act 2 Scene 2

Juliet:

'and yet no further than a wanton's bird, that lets it hop a little from his hand'

Bird imagery. Juliet refers to Romeo as her pet bird. She is likening herself to a spoiled child with her pet and this perhaps suggests that, as the only daughter of a rich noble man, she is used to getting what she wants.

 

16 of 40

Act 2 Scene 2

Juliet:

‘My life were better ended by their hate,
Than death prorogued, wanting of thy love.’

Foreshadowing. In other words, he'd much rather have her love and die on the spot, than not have her love and die later. As it turns out, he does get her love, and dies for it, too.

17 of 40

Act 2 Scene 2

Juliet:

‘My bounty is as boundless as the sea, / My love as deep’ 

Simile. The balcony scene is full of similes, perhaps reflecting how passionate the lovers are feeling. 

18 of 40

Act 2 Scene 2

Juliet:

‘Parting is such sweet sorrow’ 

Oxymoron. 'Sorrow' is not 'sweet' so this creates an oxymoron suggesting mixed emotions and internal conflict.

19 of 40

Act 2 Scene 2

Romeo:

‘Love goes toward love, as schoolboys from their books, / But love from love, toward school with heavy looks.’

Simile. Shakespeare has used a lot of similes in Romeo's speech, perhaps suggesting that he is very poetic and romantic unlike Tybalt who is aggressive and uses short sharp sentences and harsh language. 

20 of 40

Act 2 Scene 2

Romeo:

‘It is the east, and Juliet is the sun. Arise, fair sun, and kill the envious moon’

Metaphor. He compares Juliet to the sun in this extended metaphor. The sun is  symbol of hope, life and light. Shakespeare is telling us that Romeo is so moved by her beauty that he is inspired to recite spontaneous poetry.

21 of 40

Act 2 Scene 2

Romeo:

‘How silver-sweet sound lovers' tongues by night,/Like softest music to attending ears!’ 

Simile. Shakespeare presents Romeo as a sensitive poet, through his constant use of similes and metaphors.

22 of 40

Act 2 Scene 2

Juliet:

'O for a falconer's voice to lure this tassle-gentle back again'

Bird imagery: Juliet refers to Romeo as a 'tassle-gentle' which is a term for a trained falcon. Falcons are powerful and intelligent birds, which shows she respected Romeo. However as the 'falconer', she sees herself in control and wants to use her 'voice' to keep him close and secret like a falconer and his bird.

23 of 40

Act 2 Scene 3

Friar Laurence

‘And flecked darkness like a drunkard reels/From forth day's path and Titan's fiery wheels’ 

Simile. Similes are used throughout this play, especially for Romeo and Juliet, but also other characters when they are feeling particulary thoughtful, like the Friar is in this scene.

24 of 40

Act 2 Scene 5

Juliet:

'Therefore do nimble-pinioned doves draw love'

Bird imagery. 'Doves' are messengers of love and here they are described as 'nimble', perhaps suggesting that they are quick like cupid. Maybe this also suggests that love is a sudden emotion and perhaps happens so quickly that reason is left behind: reminding us to act 'wisely and slow. They stumble that run fast'

25 of 40

Act 2 Scene 6

Friar Laurence:

‘These violent delights have violent ends’

Foreshadowing. He foreshadows that their passionate love will result in their violent deaths. Due to the Prologue and the non specific term 'violent ends', this could also be dramatic irony as we know that they die. Additionally, It is also an oxymoron as 'delight' and 'violent' contrast each other, perhaps suggesting the Friar's feelings of conflict.

26 of 40

Act 3 Scene 1

Benvolio:

‘And to 't they go like lightning’ 

Simile. This image suggests the uncontrollable rage of a storm and the sudden flash of a sword like a bolt of lightning.

27 of 40

Act 3 Scene 1

Romeo:

‘I do protest, I never injured thee, But love thee better than thou canst devise, Till thou shalt know the reason of my love’

Dramatic irony. When Romeo tells Tybalt that he ‘love thee better than thou canst devise’, we know that this is true because he is now married to a Capulet but Tybalt thinks that he is mocking him.

28 of 40

Act 3 Scene 2

Juliet:

‘Beautiful tyrant! fiend angelical!
Dove-feather'd raven! wolvish-ravening lamb!’ 

Oxymoron. Used here to show her inner conflict, she loves Romeo but hates what he has done. Her anguish is further emphasised by the short abrupt sentence structure and exclamation marks.

29 of 40

Act 3 Scene 2

Juliet:

‘I have bought the mansion of a love, But not possess'd it’

Metaphor. Juliet compares her marriage to a 'mansion'. She uses the image that she bought a house but not yet lived in it to suggest that her marriage is not complete because she has had no benefit of it, because they have not had their wedding night.

30 of 40

Act 3 Scene 2

Nurse:

‘Ah, well-a-day! he's dead, he's dead, he's dead! We are undone, lady, we are undone! Alack the day! he's gone, he's kill'd, he's dead!’

Dramatic irony. When the nurse tells Juliet ‘He’s gone, he’s kill’d, he’s dead!’ Juliet thinks she is talking about Romeo but the audience know she must be talking about Tybalt.

31 of 40

Act 3 Scene 5

Juliet:

‘Delay this marriage for a month, a week;
Or, if you do not, make the bridal bed
In that dim monument where Tybalt lies.’

Foreshadowing. Juliet is saying she'd rather die than marry Paris, but by the end of the play she is sleeping next to her husband, Romeo, on her wedding night, to Paris, in that 'dim monument'.

32 of 40

Act 3 Scene 5

Juliet:

‘O God, I have an ill-divining soul!
Methinks I see thee, now thou art below,
As one dead in the bottom of a tomb:
Either my eyesight fails, or thou look'st pale.’

Foreshadowing. As a matter of fact, the next time she sees him he will be dead in a tomb. She even thinks that she is 'divining' a future event, like a vision or premonition.


33 of 40

Act 3 Scene 5

Lady Capulet:

‘I'll send to one in Mantua, /Where that same banish'd runagate doth live, /Shall give him such an unaccustom'd dram, /That he shall soon keep Tybalt company’

Foreshadowing. Lady Capulet threatens vengeance, but this also foreshadows Romeo death by a 'dram' of poison and his keeping Tybalt ‘company’, as they are both in the Capulet tomb.

34 of 40

Act 3 Scene 5

Lady Capulet:

‘Evermore weeping for your cousin's death?What, wilt thou wash him from his grave with tears?’

Dramatic Irony. When Lady Capulet thinks Juliet is weeping over her ‘cousin’s death’, we know that she is mainly weeping over Romeo's banishment, as indicated by Juliet's double talk and ambiguous answers throughout this scene.

35 of 40

Act 4 Scene 5

Capulet:

‘Death lies on her like an untimely frost/Upon the sweetest flower of all the field.’ 

Simile. On more than one occasion, Capulet uses natural imagery of flowers and fruit to describe Juliet. 

36 of 40

Act 4 Scene 5

Nurse:

‘I must needs wake you; Lady! lady! lady! Alas, alas! Help, help! my lady's dead!

Dramatic irony. When the nurse finds Juliet unresponsive in her bed on her wedding day she thinks ‘My lady’s dead!’ but we know she is not. Perhaps this also reminds us that Juliet has not confided in her Nurse on this occasion: her reaction is dramatic and real.

37 of 40

Act 5 Scene 1

Romeo:

‘I dreamt my lady came and found me dead-- /Strange dream, that gives a dead man leave to think!’

Foreshadowing. Later in this act Juliet actually wakes and finds him dead. Elizabethan audiences would believe that dreams had significant meanings and may believe this is a premonition.

38 of 40

Act 5 Scene 3

Paris:

‘Sweet flower, with flowers thy bridal bed I strew’ 

Metaphor. Like Lord Capulet, Paris is comparing Juliet to flowers. Flowers are fragrant, beautiful and delicate. It is a romantic image but perhaps suggests that his love for her was rather superficial and based purely on her beauty.

39 of 40

Act 5 Scene 3

Romeo:

‘Thou art not conquer'd; beauty's ensign yet Is crimson in thy lips and in thy cheeks, And death's pale flag is not advanced there.’

Dramatic irony. When Romeo find Juliet in the Capulet’s tomb he comments on how alive she looks but still thinks that she is dead. This is particulalry frustrating and dramatic for the audience who know that she is only sleeping.

40 of 40

Comments

arthoeleo

Report

perfect 

Similar English Literature resources:

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