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An 1870 oil painting by Ford Madox Brown depicting Romeo and Juliet's famous balcony scene

Romeo and Juliet is a tragedy written early in the career of playwright William Shakespeare about two young "star-cross'd lovers"[1] whose deaths ultimately unite their feuding families. It was among Shakespeare's most popular plays during his lifetime and, along with Hamlet and Macbeth, is one of his most frequently performed plays. Today, the title characters are regarded as archetypal young lovers.

Romeo and Juliet belongs to a tradition of tragic romances stretching back to antiquity. Its plot is based on an Italian tale, translated into verse as The Tragical History of Romeus and Juliet by Arthur Brooke in 1562, and retold in prose in Palace of Pleasure by William Painter in 1582. Shakespeare borrowed heavily from both, but developed supporting characters, particularly Mercutio and Paris, in order to expand the plot. Believed to be written between 1591 and 1595, the play was first published in a quarto version in 1597[2]. This text was of poor quality, and later editions corrected it, bringing it more in line with Shakespeare's original.

Shakespeare's use of dramatic structure, especially effects such as switching between comedy and tragedy to heighten tension, his expansion of minor characters, and his use of sub-plots to embellish the story, has been praised as an early sign of his dramatic skill. The play ascribes different poetic forms to different characters, sometimes changing the form as the character develops. Romeo, for example, grows more adept at the sonnet over the course of the play.

Romeo and Juliet has been adapted numerous times for stage, film, musical and opera. During the Restoration, it was revived and heavily revised by William Davenant. David Garrick's 18th-century version also modified several scenes, removing material then considered indecent, and Georg Benda's operatic adaptation omitted much of the action and added a happy ending. Performances in the 19th century, including Charlotte Cushman's, restored the original text, and focused on greater realism. John Gielgud's 1935 version kept very close to Shakespeare's text, and used Elizabethan costumes and staging to enhance the drama. In the 20th century the play has been adapted in versions as diverse as MGM's comparatively faithful 1936 film, the 1950s stage musical West Side Story, and 1996's MTV-inspired Romeo + Juliet.

Contents

Characters

Romeo and Juliet depicts the interactions between two prominent families (or houses) in Verona.[3]

House of Capulet
  • Capulet is the patriarch of the house of Capulet.
  • Lady Capulet is the matriarch of the house of Capulet.
  • Juliet is the daughter of the Capulets, and is the play's female protagonist.
  • Tybalt is a cousin of Juliet, and the nephew of Lady Capulet.
  • The Nurse is Juliet's personal attendant and confidante.
  • Peter, Sampson and Gregory are servants of the Capulet household.
  • Rosaline, a niece to Lord Capulet, is an unseen character with whom Romeo is in love before meeting Juliet.
Ruling house of Verona
House of Montague
  • Montague is the patriarch of the house of Montague.
  • Lady Montague is the matriarch of the house of Montague.
  • Romeo is the son of the Montagues, and is the play's male protagonist.
  • Benvolio is a cousin, and friend, of Romeo.
  • Abram and Balthasar are servants of the Montague household.




Others
  • Friar Lawrence is a Franciscan friar, and is Romeo's confidant.
  • A Chorus reads a prologue to each of the first two acts.
  • Friar John is sent to deliver Friar Laurence's letter to Romeo.
  • An Apothecary reluctantly sells Romeo poison.

Synopsis

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L’ultimo bacio dato a Giulietta da Romeo by Francesco Hayez. Oil on canvas, 1823.

The play, set in Verona, begins with a street brawl between Montagues and Capulets. The Prince of Verona intervenes and declares that further breach of the peace will be punishable by death. Later, Count Paris talks to Lord Capulet about marrying his daughter, but Capulet is wary of the request because Juliet is only thirteen. Capulet asks Paris to wait another two years and invites him to attend a planned Capulet ball. Lady Capulet and Juliet's nurse try to persuade Juliet to accept Paris' courtship.

Meanwhile, at the house of Montague, Benvolio talks with his cousin Romeo, Lord Montague's son, about Romeo's recent depression. Benvolio discovers that it stems from unrequited infatuation for a girl named Rosaline, one of Lord Capulet's nieces. Persuaded by Benvolio and Mercutio, Romeo attends the ball at the Capulet house in hopes of meeting Rosaline. However, Romeo instead meets and falls in love with Juliet. After the ball, in what is now called the "balcony scene", Romeo sneaks into the Capulet courtyard and overhears Juliet on her balcony vowing her love to him in spite of her family's hatred of the Montagues. Romeo makes himself known to her and they agree to be married. With the help of Friar Laurence, who hopes to reconcile the two families through their children's union, they are secretly married the next day.

Juliet's cousin Tybalt, incensed that Romeo had sneaked into the Capulet ball, challenges him to a duel. Romeo, now considering Tybalt his kinsman, refuses to fight. Mercutio is offended by Tybalt's insolence, as well as Romeo's "vile submission",[4] and accepts the duel on Romeo's behalf. Mercutio is fatally wounded when Romeo attempts to break up the fight. Grief-stricken and wracked with guilt, Romeo confronts and slays Tybalt.

Montague argues that Romeo has justly executed Tybalt for the murder of Mercutio. The Prince, now having lost a kinsman in the warring families' feud, exiles Romeo from Verona and declares that if Romeo returns, "that hour is his last". Romeo secretly spends the night in Juliet's chamber, where they consummate their marriage. Lord Capulet, misinterpreting Juliet's grief, agrees to marry her to Count Paris and threatens to disown her when she refuses to become Paris's "joyful bride". When she then pleads for the marriage to be delayed, her mother rejects her.

Juliet visits Friar Laurence for help, and he offers her a drug that will put her into a death-like coma for "two and forty hours".[5] The Friar promises to send a messenger to inform Romeo of the plan, so that he can rejoin her when she awakens. On the night before the wedding, she takes the drug and, when discovered apparently dead, she is laid in the family crypt.

The messenger, however, does not reach Romeo and, instead, he learns of Juliet's apparent death from his servant Balthasar. Heartbroken, Romeo buys poison from an apothecary and goes to the Capulet crypt. He encounters Paris who has come to mourn Juliet privately. Believing Romeo to be a vandal, Paris confronts him and, in the ensuing battle, Romeo kills Paris. Still believing Juliet to be dead, he drinks the poison. Juliet then awakens and, finding Romeo dead, stabs herself with his dagger. The feuding families and the Prince meet at the tomb to find all three dead. Friar Laurence recounts the story of the two "star-cross'd lovers". The families are reconciled by their children's deaths and agree to end their violent feud. The play ends with the Prince's elegy for the lovers: "For never was a story of more woe / Than this of Juliet and her Romeo."[6]

Sources

Title page of Arthur Brooke's poem, Romeus and Juliet.

Romeo and Juliet borrows from a tradition of tragic love stories dating back to antiquity. One of these is Pyramus and Thisbe, from Ovid's Metamorphoses, which contains parallels to Shakespeare's story: the lovers' parents despise each other, and Pyramus falsely believes his lover Thisbe is dead.[7] The Ephesiaca of Xenophon of Ephesus, written in the 3rd century, also contains several similarities to the play, including the separation of the lovers, and a potion which induces a deathlike sleep.[8]

The earliest known version of the Romeo and Juliet tale is the story of Mariotto and Gianozza by Masuccio Salernitano, in the 33rd novel of his Il Novellino published in 1476.[9] Salernitano sets the story in Siena and insists its events took place in his own lifetime. His version of the story includes the secret marriage, the colluding friar, the fray where a prominent citizen is killed, Mariotto's exile, Gianozza's forced marriage, the potion plot, and the crucial message that goes astray. In this version, Mariotto is caught and beheaded and Gianozza dies of grief.[10]

Luigi da Porto adapted the story as Giulietta e Romeo and included it in his Historia novellamente ritrovata di due Nobili Amanti published in 1530.[11] Da Porto drew on Pyramus and Thisbe and Boccacio's Decameron. He gave it much of its modern form, including the names of the lovers, the rival families of Montecchi and Capuleti, and the location in Verona.[9] He also introduces characters corresponding to Shakespeare's Mercutio, Tybalt, and Paris. Da Porto presents his tale as historically true and claims it took place in the days of Bartolomeo II della Scala (a century earlier than Salernitano). Montecchi and Capuleti were actual 13th-century political factions, but the only connection between them is a mention in Dante's Purgatorio as an example of civil dissention.[12] In da Porto's version Romeo takes poison and Giulietta stabs herself with his dagger.[13]

In 1554, Matteo Bandello published the second volume of his Novelle which included his version of Giuletta e Romeo.[11] Bandello emphasises Romeo's initial depression and the feud between the families, and introduces the Nurse and Benvolio. Bandello's story was translated into French by Pierre Boaistuau in 1559 in the first volume of his Histories Tragiques. Boaistuau adds much moralising and sentiment, and the characters indulge in rhetorical outbursts.[14]

In his 1562 narrative poem The Tragical History of Romeus and Juliet, Arthur Brooke translated Boaistuau faithfully, but adjusted it to reflect parts of Chaucer's Troilus and Criseyde.[15] There was a trend among writers and playwrights to publish works based on Italian novelles—Italian tales were very popular among theatre-goers—and Shakespeare may well have been familiar with William Painter's 1567 collection of Italian tales titled Palace of Pleasure.[16] This collection included a version in prose of the Romeo and Juliet story named "The goodly History of the true and constant love of Rhomeo and Julietta". Shakespeare took advantage of this popularity: The Merchant of Venice, Much Ado About Nothing, All's Well That Ends Well, Measure for Measure, and Romeo and Juliet are all from Italian novelle. Romeo and Juliet is a dramatisation of Brooke's translation, and Shakespeare follows the poem closely, but adds extra detail to both major and minor characters (in particular the Nurse and Mercutio).[17]

Christopher Marlowe's Hero and Leander and Dido, Queen of Carthage, both similar stories written in Shakespeare's day, are thought to be less of a direct influence, although they may have helped create an atmosphere in which tragic love stories could thrive.[15]

Date and text

Title page of the Second Quarto of Romeo and Juliet published in 1599

It is unknown when exactly Shakespeare wrote Romeo and Juliet. Juliet's nurse refers to an earthquake which she says occurred 11 years ago.[18] This may refer to the Dover Straits earthquake of 1580, which would date that particular line to 1591. Other earthquakes—both in England and in Verona—have been proposed in support of different dates.[19] But the play's stylistic similarities with A Midsummer Night's Dream and other plays conventionally dated around 1594–95, place its composition sometime between 1591 and 1595.[20] One conjecture is that Shakespeare may have begun a draft in 1591, which he completed in 1595.[21]

Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet was published in two quarto editions prior to the publication of the First Folio of 1623. These are referred to as Q1 and Q2. The first printed edition, Q1, appeared in early 1597, printed by John Danter. Because its text contains numerous differences from the later editions, it is labelled a 'bad quarto'; the 20th-century editor T. J. B. Spencer described it as "a detestable text, probably a reconstruction of the play from the imperfect memories of one or two of the actors", suggesting that it had been pirated for publication.[22] An alternative explanation for Q1's shortcomings is that the play (like many others of the time) may have been heavily edited before performance by the playing company.[23] In any event, its appearance in early 1597 makes 1596 the latest possible date for the play's composition.[19]

The superior Q2 called the play The Most Excellent and Lamentable Tragedie of Romeo and Juliet. It was printed in 1599 by Thomas Creede and published by Cuthbert Burby. Q2 is about 800 lines longer than Q1.[23] Its title page describes it as "Newly corrected, augmented and amended". Scholars believe that Q2 was based on Shakespeare's pre-performance draft (called his foul papers), since there are textual oddities such as variable tags for characters and "false starts" for speeches that were presumably struck through by the author but erroneously preserved by the typesetter. It is a much more complete and reliable text, and was reprinted in 1609 (Q3), 1622 (Q4) and 1637 (Q5).[22] In effect, all later Quartos and Folios of Romeo and Juliet are based on Q2, as are all modern editions since editors believe that any deviations from Q2 in the later editions (whether good or bad) are likely to arise from editors or compositors, not from Shakespeare.[23]

The First Folio text of 1623 was based primarily on Q3, with clarifications and corrections possibly coming from a theatrical promptbook or Q1.[22][24] Other Folio editions of the play were printed in 1632 (F2), 1664 (F3), and 1685 (F4).[25] Modern versions—that take into account several of the Folios and Quartos—first appeared with Nicholas Rowe's 1709 edition, followed by Alexander Pope's 1723 version. Pope began a tradition of editing the play to add information such as stage directions missing in Q2 by locating them in Q1. This tradition continued late into the Romantic period. Fully annotated editions first appeared in the Victorian period and continue to be produced today, printing the text of the play with footnotes describing the sources and culture behind the play.[26]

Themes and motifs

Scholars have found it extremely difficult to assign one specific, over-arching theme to the play. Proposals for a main theme include a discovery by the characters that human beings are neither wholly good nor wholly evil, but instead are more or less alike,[27] awaking out of a dream and into reality, the danger of hasty action, or the power of tragic fate. None of these have widespread support. However, even if an overall theme cannot be found it is clear that the play is full of several small, thematic elements which intertwine in complex ways. Several of those which are most often debated by scholars are discussed below.[28]

Love

"Romeo
If I profane with my unworthiest hand
This holy shrine, the gentle sin is this:
My lips, two blushing pilgrims, ready stand
To smooth that rough touch with a tender kiss.
Juliet
Good pilgrim, you do wrong your hand too much,
Which mannerly devotion shows in this;
For saints have hands that pilgrims' hands do touch,
And palm to palm is holy palmers' kiss."
Romeo and Juliet, Act I, Scene V[29]

Romeo and Juliet is sometimes considered to have no unifying theme, save that of young love.[27] Romeo and Juliet have become emblematic of young lovers and doomed love. Since it is such an obvious subject of the play, several scholars have explored the language and historical context behind the romance of the play.[30]

On their first meeting, Romeo and Juliet use a form of communication recommended by many etiquette authors in Shakespeare's day: metaphor. By using metaphors of saints and sins, Romeo was able to test Juliet's feelings for him in a non-threatening way. This method was recommended by Baldassare Castiglione (whose works had been translated into English by this time). He pointed out that if a man used a metaphor as an invitation, the woman could pretend she did not understand him, and he could retreat without losing honour. Juliet, however, participates in the metaphor and expands on it. The religious metaphors of "shrine", "pilgrim" and "saint" were fashionable in the poetry of the time and more likely to be understood as romantic rather than blasphemous, as the concept of sainthood was associated with the Catholicism of an earlier age.[31] Later in the play, Shakespeare removes the more daring allusions to Christ's resurrection in the tomb he found in his source work: Brooke's Romeus and Juliet.[32]

In the later balcony scene, Shakespeare has Romeo overhear Juliet's soliloquy, but in Brooke's version of the story her declaration is done alone. By bringing Romeo into the scene to eavesdrop, Shakespeare breaks from the normal sequence of courtship. Usually a woman was required to be modest and shy to make sure that her suitor was sincere, but breaking this rule serves to speed along the plot. The lovers are able to skip a lengthy part of wooing, and move on to plain talk about their relationship—developing into an agreement to be married after knowing each other for only one night.[30] In the final suicide scene, there is a contradiction in the message—in the Catholic religion, suicides were often thought to be condemned to hell, whereas people who die to be with their loves under the "Religion of Love" are joined with their loves in paradise. Romeo and Juliet's love seems to be expressing the "Religion of Love" view rather than the Catholic view. Another point is that although their love is passionate, it is only consummated in marriage, which prevents them from losing the audience's sympathy.[33]

The play arguably equates love and sex with death. Throughout the story, both Romeo and Juliet, along with the other characters, fantasise about it as a dark being, often equating it with a lover. Capulet, for example, when he first discovers Juliet's (faked) death, describes it as having deflowered his daughter.[34] Juliet later erotically compares Romeo and death. Right before her suicide she grabs Romeo's dagger, saying "O happy dagger! This is thy sheath. There rust, and let me die."[35][36]

Fate and chance

"O, I am fortune's fool!"
—Romeo, Act III Scene I[37]

Scholars are divided on the role of fate in the play. No consensus exists on whether the characters are truly fated to die together or whether the events take place by a series of unlucky chances. Arguments in favour of fate often refer to the description of the lovers as "star-cross'd".[1] This phrase seems to hint that the stars have predetermined the lovers' future.[38] John W. Draper points out the parallels between the Elizabethan belief in the four humours and the main characters of the play (for example, Tybalt as a choleric). Interpreting the text in the light of humours reduces the amount of plot attributed to chance by modern audiences.[39] Still, other scholars see the play as a series of unlucky chances—many to such a degree that they do not see it as a tragedy at all, but an emotional melodrama.[39] Ruth Nevo believes the high degree to which chance is stressed in the narrative makes Romeo and Juliet a "lesser tragedy" of happenstance, not of character. For example, Romeo's challenging Tybalt is not impulsive, it is, after Mercutio's death, the expected action to take. In this scene, Nevo reads Romeo as being aware of the dangers of flouting social norms, identity and commitments. He makes the choice to kill, not because of a tragic flaw, but because of circumstance.[40]

Duality (Light and dark)

"O brawling love, O loving hate,
O any thing of nothing first create!
O heavy lightness, serious vanity,
Misshapen chaos of well-seeming forms,
Feather of lead, bright smoke, cold fire, sick health,
Still-waking sleep, that is not what it is!"
—Romeo, Act I Scene I[41]

Scholars have long noted Shakespeare's widespread use of light and dark imagery throughout the play. Caroline Spurgeon considers the theme of light as "symbolic of the natural beauty of young love" and later critics have expanded on this interpretation.[40][42] For example, both Romeo and Juliet see the other as light in a surrounding darkness. Romeo describes Juliet as being like the sun,[43] brighter than a torch,[44] a jewel sparkling in the night,[45] and a bright angel among dark clouds.[46] Even when she lies apparently dead in the tomb, he says her "beauty makes This vault a feasting presence full of light."[47] Juliet describes Romeo as "day in night" and "Whiter than snow upon a raven's back."[48][49] This contrast of light and dark can be expanded as symbols—contrasting love and hate, youth and age in a metaphoric way.[40] Sometimes these intertwining metaphors create dramatic irony. For example, Romeo and Juliet's love is a light in the midst of the darkness of the hate around them, but all of their activity together is done in night and darkness, while all of the feuding is done in broad daylight. This paradox of imagery adds atmosphere to the moral dilemma facing the two lovers: loyalty to family or loyalty to love. At the end of the story, when the morning is gloomy and the sun hiding its face for sorrow, light and dark have returned to their proper places, the outward darkness reflecting the true, inner darkness of the family feud out of sorrow for the lovers. All characters now recognise their folly in light of recent events, and things return to the natural order, thanks to the love of Romeo and Juliet.[42] The "light" theme in the play is also heavily connected to the theme of time, since light was a convenient way for Shakespeare to express the passage of time through descriptions of the sun, moon, and stars.[50]

Time

"These times of woe afford no time to woo."
—Paris, Act III Scene IV[51]

Time plays an important role in the language and plot of the play. Both Romeo and Juliet struggle to maintain an imaginary world void of time in the face of the harsh realities that surround them. For instance, when Romeo swears his love to Juliet by the moon, she protests "O swear not by the moon, th'inconstant moon, / That monthly changes in her circled orb, / Lest that thy love prove likewise variable."[52] From the very beginning, the lovers are designated as "star-cross'd"[1] referring to an astrologic belief associated with time. Stars were thought to control the fates of humanity, and as time passed, stars would move along their course in the sky, also charting the course of human lives below. Romeo speaks of a foreboding he feels in the stars' movements early in the play, and when he learns of Juliet's death, he defies the stars' course for him.[39][53]

Another central theme is haste: Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet spans a period of four to six days, in contrast to Brooke's poem's spanning nine months.[50] Scholars such as G. Thomas Tanselle believe that time was "especially important to Shakespeare" in this play, as he used references to "short-time" for the young lovers as opposed to references to "long-time" for the "older generation" to highlight "a headlong rush towards doom".[50] Romeo and Juliet fight time to make their love last forever. In the end, the only way they seem to defeat time is through a death which makes them immortal through art.[54]

Time is also connected to the theme of light and dark. In Shakespeare's day, plays were often performed at noon in broad daylight. This forced the playwright to use words to create the illusion of day and night in his plays. Shakespeare uses references to the night and day, the stars, the moon, and the sun to create this illusion. He also has characters frequently refer to days of the week and specific hours to help the audience understand that time has passed in the story. All in all, no fewer than 103 references to time are found in the play, adding to the illusion of its passage.[55]

Criticism and interpretation

Critical history

Portrait of the earliest recorded critic of the play, Samuel Pepys, by John Hayls. Oil on canvas, 1666.

Critics have noted many weak points in Romeo and Juliet, but it is still one of Shakespeare's most famous plays. The earliest known critic of the play was diarist Samuel Pepys, who wrote in 1662: "it is a play of itself the worst that I ever heard in my life."[56] Poet John Dryden wrote 10 years later in praise of the play and its comic character Mercutio: "Shakespear show'd the best of his skill in his Mercutio, and he said himself, that he was forc'd to kill him in the third Act, to prevent being killed by him."[56] Criticism of the play in the 18th century was less sparse, but no less divided. Publisher Nicholas Rowe was the first critic to ponder the theme of the play, which he saw as the just punishment of the two feuding families. In mid-century, writer Charles Gildon and philosopher Lord Kames argued that the play was a failure in that it did not follow the classical rules of drama: the tragedy must occur because of some character flaw, not an accident of fate. Writer and critic Samuel Johnson, however, considered it one of Shakespeare's "most pleasing" plays.[57]

In the later part of the 18th and through the 19th century, criticism centred on debates over the moral message of the play. Actor and playwright David Garrick's 1748 adaptation excluded Rosaline: Romeo abandoning her for Juliet was seen as fickle and reckless. Critics such as Charles Dibdin argued that Rosaline had been purposely included in the play to show how reckless the hero was, and that this was the reason for his tragic end. Others argued that Friar Laurence might be Shakespeare's spokesman in his warnings against undue haste. With the advent of the 20th century, these moral arguments were disputed by critics like Richard Green Moulton. He argued that accident, and not some character flaw, led to the lovers' deaths.[58]

Dramatic structure

In Romeo and Juliet, Shakespeare employs several dramatic techniques that have garnered praise from critics; most notably the abrupt shifts from comedy to tragedy (an example is the punning exchange between Benvolio and Mercutio just before Tybalt arrives). Before Mercutio's death in Act three, the play is largely a comedy.[59] After his accidental demise, the play suddenly becomes serious and takes on a tragic tone. When Romeo is banished, rather than executed, and Friar Laurence offers Juliet a plan to reunite her with Romeo, the audience can still hope that all will end well. They are in a "breathless state of suspense" by the opening of the last scene in the tomb: If Romeo is delayed long enough for the Friar to arrive, he and Juliet may yet be saved.[60] These shifts from hope to despair, reprieve, and new hope, serve to emphasise the tragedy when the final hope fails and both the lovers die at the end.[61]

Shakespeare also uses sub-plots to offer a clearer view of the actions of the main characters. For example, when the play begins, Romeo is in love with Rosaline, who has refused all of his advances. Romeo's infatuation with her stands in obvious contrast to his later love for Juliet. This provides a comparison through which the audience can see the seriousness of Romeo and Juliet's love and marriage. Paris' love for Juliet also sets up a contrast between Juliet's feelings for him and her feelings for Romeo. The formal language she uses around Paris, as well as the way she talks about him to her Nurse, show that her feelings clearly lie with Romeo. Beyond this, the sub-plot of the Montague–Capulet feud overarches the whole play, providing an atmosphere of hate that is the main contributor to the play's tragic end.[61]

Language

Shakespeare uses a variety of poetic forms throughout the play. He begins with a 14-line prologue in the form of a Shakespearean sonnet, spoken by a Chorus. Most of Romeo and Juliet is, however, written in blank verse, and much of it in strict iambic pentameter, with less rhythmic variation than in most of Shakespeare's later plays.[62] In choosing forms, Shakespeare matches the poetry to the character who uses it. Friar Laurence, for example, uses sermon and sententiae forms, and the Nurse uses a unique blank verse form that closely matches colloquial speech.[62] Each of these forms is also moulded and matched to the emotion of the scene the character occupies. For example, when Romeo talks about Rosaline earlier in the play, he attempts to use the Petrarchan sonnet form. Petrarchan sonnets were often used by men to exaggerate the beauty of women who were impossible for them to attain, as in Romeo's situation with Rosaline. This sonnet form is used by Lady Capulet to describe Count Paris to Juliet as a handsome man.[63] When Romeo and Juliet meet, the poetic form changes from the Petrarchan (which was becoming archaic in Shakespeare's day) to a then more contemporary sonnet form, using "pilgrims" and "saints" as metaphors.[64] Finally, when the two meet on the balcony, Romeo attempts to use the sonnet form to pledge his love, but Juliet breaks it by saying "Dost thou love me?"[65] By doing this, she searches for true expression, rather than a poetic exaggeration of their love.[66] Juliet uses monosyllabic words with Romeo, but uses formal language with Paris.[67] Other forms in the play include an epithalamium by Juliet, a rhapsody in Mercutio's Queen Mab speech, and an elegy by Paris.[68] Shakespeare saves his prose style most often for the common people in the play, though at times he uses it for other characters, such as Mercutio.[69] Humour, also, is important: scholar Molly Mahood identifies at least 175 puns and wordplays in the text.[70] Many of these jokes are sexual in nature, especially those involving Mercutio and the Nurse.[71]

Psychoanalytic criticism

Early psychoanalytic critics saw the problem of Romeo and Juliet in terms of Romeo's impulsiveness, deriving from "ill-controlled, partially disguised aggression", which leads both to Mercutio's death and to the double suicide.[72] Romeo and Juliet is not considered to be exceedingly psychologically complex, and sympathetic psychoanalytic readings of the play make the tragic male experience equivalent with sicknesses.[73] Norman Holland, writing in 1966, considers Romeo's dream[74] as a realistic "wish fulfilling fantasy both in terms of Romeo's adult world and his hypothetical childhood at stages oral, phallic and oedipal" – while acknowledging that a dramatic character is not a human being with mental processes separate from those of the author.[75] Critics such as Julia Kristeva focus on the hatred between the families, arguing that this hatred is the cause of Romeo and Juliet's passion for each other. That hatred manifests itself directly in the lovers' language: Juliet, for example, speaks of "my only love sprung from my only hate"[76] and often expresses her passion through an anticipation of Romeo's death.[77] This leads on to speculation as to the playwright's psychology, in particular to a consideration of Shakespeare's grief for the death of his son, Hamnet.[78]

Feminist criticism

Feminist critics argue that the blame for the family feud lies in Verona's patriarchal society. For Coppélia Kahn, for example, the strict, masculine code of violence imposed on Romeo is the main force driving the tragedy to its end. When Tybalt kills Mercutio, Romeo shifts into this violent mode, regretting that Juliet has made him so "effeminate".[79] In this view, the younger males "become men" by engaging in violence on behalf of their fathers, or in the case of the servants, their masters. The feud is also linked to male virility, as the numerous jokes about maidenheads aptly demonstrate.[80] Juliet also submits to a female code of docility by allowing others, such as the Friar, to solve her problems for her. Other critics, such as Dympna Callaghan, look at the play's feminism from a historicist angle, stressing that when the play was written the feudal order was being challenged by increasingly centralised government and the advent of capitalism. At the same time, emerging Puritan ideas about marriage were less concerned with the "evils of female sexuality" than those of earlier eras, and more sympathetic towards love-matches: so when Juliet dodges her father's attempt to force her to marry a man she has no feeling for, she is challenging the patriarchal order in a way that would not have been possible at an earlier time.[81]

Queer theory

Queer studies critics question the sexuality of Mercutio and Romeo, comparing their friendship with sexual love. Mercutio, in friendly conversation, mentions Romeo's phallus, suggesting traces of homoeroticism.[82] An example is his joking wish "To raise a spirit in his mistress' circle ... letting it there stand / Till she had laid it and conjured it down."[83][84] Romeo's homoeroticism can also be found in his attitude to Rosaline, a woman who is distant and unavailable and brings no hope of offspring. As Benvolio argues, she is best replaced by someone who will reciprocate. Shakespeare's procreation sonnets describe another young man who, like Romeo, is having trouble creating offspring and who may be seen as being a homosexual. Gender critics believe that Shakespeare may have used Rosaline as a way to express homosexual problems of procreation in an acceptable way. In this view, when Juliet says "...that which we call a rose [or Rosaline] / By any other name would smell as sweet",[85] she may be raising the question of whether there is any difference between the beauty of a man and the beauty of a woman.[86]

Afterlife

Shakespeare's day

Richard Burbage, probably the first actor to portray Romeo[87]

Romeo and Juliet ranks with Hamlet as one of Shakespeare's most-performed plays.[88] Its many adaptations have made it one of his most enduring and famous stories.[88] Even in Shakespeare's lifetime it was extremely popular. Scholar Gary Taylor measures it as the sixth most popular of Shakespeare's plays, in the period after the death of Christopher Marlowe and Thomas Kyd but before the ascendancy of Ben Jonson during which Shakespeare was London's dominant playwright.[89] The date of the first performance is unknown. The First Quarto, printed in 1597, says that "it hath been often (and with great applause) plaid publiquely", setting the first performance prior to that date. The Lord Chamberlain's Men were certainly the first to perform it. Besides their strong connections with Shakespeare, the Second Quarto actually names one of its actors, Will Kemp, instead of Peter in a line in Act five. Richard Burbage was probably the first Romeo, being the company's leading actor, and Master Robert Goffe (a male) the first Juliet.[87] The premiere is likely to have been at "The Theatre", with other early productions at "The Curtain".[90] Romeo and Juliet is one of the first Shakespearean plays to have been performed outside England: a shortened and simplified version was performed in Nördlingen in 1604.[91]

Restoration and 18th-century theatre

All theatres were closed down by the puritan government on 6 September 1642. Upon the restoration of the monarchy in 1660, two patent companies (the King's Company and the Duke's Company) were established, and the existing theatrical repertoire divided between them.[92]

Mary Saunderson, probably the first woman to play Juliet professionally

Sir William Davenant of the Duke's Company staged a 1662 adaptation in which Henry Harris played Romeo, Thomas Betterton Mercutio, and Betterton's wife Mary Saunderson Juliet: she was probably the first woman to play the role professionally.[93][94] Another version closely followed Davenant's adaptation and was also regularly performed by the Duke's Company. This was a tragicomedy by James Howard, in which the two lovers survive.[95]

Thomas Otway's The History and Fall of Caius Marius, one of the more extreme of the Restoration adaptations of Shakespeare, debuted in 1680. The scene is shifted from Renaissance Verona to ancient Rome; Romeo is Marius, Juliet is Lavinia, the feud is between patricians and plebeians; Juliet/Lavinia wakes from her potion before Romeo/Marius dies. Otway's version was a hit, and was acted for the next seventy years.[94] His innovation in the closing scene was even more enduring, and was used in adaptations throughout the next 200 years: Theophilus Cibber's adaptation of 1744, and David Garrick's of 1748 both used variations on it.[96] These versions also eliminated elements deemed inappropriate at the time. For example, Garrick's version transferred all language describing Rosaline to Juliet, in order to heighten the idea of faithfulness and downplay the love-at-first-sight theme.[97] In 1750 a "Battle of the Romeos" began, with Spranger Barry and Susannah Maria Arne (Mrs. Theophilus Cibber) at Covent Garden versus David Garrick and George Anne Bellamy at Drury Lane.[98]

The earliest known production in North America was an amateur one: on 23 March 1730, a physician named Joachimus Bertrand placed an advertisement in the Gazette newspaper in New York, promoting a production in which he would play the apothecary.[99] The first professional performances of the play in North America were those of the Hallam Company.[100]

19th-century theatre

The American Cushman sisters, Charlotte and Susan, as Romeo and Juliet in 1846

Garrick's altered version of the play was very popular, and ran for nearly a century.[94] Not until 1845 did Shakespeare's original return to the stage in the United States with the sisters Susan and Charlotte Cushman as Juliet and Romeo, respectively,[101] and then in 1847 in Britain with Samuel Phelps at Sadler's Wells Theatre.[102] Cushman adhered to Shakespeare's version, beginning a string of eighty-four performances. Her portrayal of Romeo was considered genius by many. The Times wrote: "For a long time Romeo has been a convention. Miss Cushman's Romeo is a creative, a living, breathing, animated, ardent human being."[103] Queen Victoria wrote in her journal that "no-one would ever have imagined she was a woman".[104] Cushman's success broke the Garrick tradition and paved the way for later performances to return to the original storyline.[94]

Professional performances of Shakespeare in the mid-nineteenth century had two particular features: firstly, they were generally star vehicles, with supporting roles cut or marginalised to give greater prominence to the central characters. Secondly, they were "pictorial", placing the action on spectacular and elaborate sets (requiring lengthy pauses for scene changes) and with the frequent use of tableaux.[105] Henry Irving's 1882 production at the Lyceum Theatre (with himself as Romeo and Ellen Terry as Juliet) is considered an archetype of the pictorial style.[106] In 1895, Sir Johnston Forbes-Robertson took over from Irving, and laid the groundwork for a more natural portrayal of Shakespeare that remains popular today. Forbes-Robertson avoided the showiness of Irving and instead portrayed a down-to-earth Romeo, expressing the poetic dialogue as realistic prose and avoiding melodramatic flourish.[107]

American actors began to rival their British counterparts. Edwin Booth (brother to John Wilkes Booth) and Mary McVicker (soon to be Edwin's wife) opened as Romeo and Juliet at the sumptuous Booth's Theatre (with its European-style stage machinery, and an air conditioning system unique in New York) on 3 February 1869. Some reports said it was one of the most elaborate productions of Romeo and Juliet ever seen in America; it was certainly the most popular, running for over six weeks and earning over $60,000.[108] The programme noted that: "The tragedy will be produced in strict accordance with historical propriety, in every respect, following closely the text of Shakespeare."[109]

The first professional performance of the play in Japan may have been George Crichton Miln's company's production which toured to Yokohama in 1890.[110] Throughout the nineteenth century, Romeo and Juliet had been Shakespeare's most popular play, measured by the number of professional performances. In the twentieth century it would become the second most popular, behind Hamlet.[111]

20th-century theatre

John Gielgud, who was among the more famous 20th-century actors to play Romeo, Friar Laurence and Mercutio on stage

John Gielgud's New Theatre production in 1935 featured Gielgud and Laurence Olivier as Romeo and Mercutio, exchanging roles six weeks into the run, with Peggy Ashcroft as Juliet.[112] Gielgud used a scholarly combination of Q1 and Q2 texts, and organised the set and costumes to match as closely as possible to the Elizabethan period. His efforts were a huge success at the box office, and set the stage for increased historical realism in later productions.[113] Olivier later compared his performance and Gielgud's: "John, all spiritual, all spirituality, all beauty, all abstract things; and myself as all earth, blood, humanity ... I've always felt that John missed the lower half and that made me go for the other ... But whatever it was, when I was playing Romeo I was carrying a torch, I was trying to sell realism in Shakespeare."[114]

Peter Brook's 1947 version was the beginning of a different style of Romeo and Juliet performances. Brook was less concerned with realism, and more concerned with translating the play into a form that could communicate with the modern world. He argued, "A production is only correct at the moment of its correctness, and only good at the moment of its success."[115] Brook excluded the final reconciliation of the families from his performance text.[116]

Throughout the century, audiences, influenced by the cinema, became less willing to accept actors distinctly older than the teenage characters they were playing.[117] A significant example of more youthful casting was in Franco Zeffirelli's Old Vic production in 1960, with John Stride and Judi Dench, which would serve as the basis for his 1968 film.[116] Zeffirelli borrowed from Brook's ideas, altogether removing around a third of the play's text in order to make it more accessible. In an interview with The Times, he stated that the play's "twin themes of love and the total breakdown of understanding between two generations" had contemporary relevance.[118]

Recent performances often set the play in the contemporary world. For example, in 1986 the Royal Shakespeare Company set the play in modern Verona. Switchblades replaced swords, feasts and balls became drug-laden rock parties, and Romeo committed suicide by hypodermic needle.[119] In 1997, the Folger Shakespeare Theatre produced a version set in a typical suburban world. Romeo sneaks into the Capulet barbecue to meet Juliet, and Juliet discovers Tybalt's death while in class at school.[120]

The play is sometimes given a historical setting, enabling audiences to reflect on the underlying conflicts. For example, adaptations have been set in the midst of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict,[121] in the apartheid era in South Africa,[122] and in the aftermath of the Pueblo Revolt.[123] Similarly, Peter Ustinov's 1956 comic adaptation, Romanoff and Juliet, is set in a fictional mid-European country in the depths of the Cold War.[124] A mock-Victorian revisionist version of Romeo and Juliet's final scene (with a happy ending, Romeo, Juliet, Mercutio and Paris restored to life, and Benvolio revealing that he is Paris's love, Benvolia, in disguise) forms part of the 1980 stage-play The Life and Adventures of Nicholas Nickleby.[125] Shakespeare’s R&J, by Joe Calarco, spins the classic in a modern tale of gay teenage awakening.[126] A recent comedic musical adaptation was The Second City's The Second City's Romeo and Juliet Musical: The People vs. Friar Laurence, the Man Who Killed Romeo and Juliet, set in modern times.[127]

In the 19th and 20th century, Romeo and Juliet has often been the choice of Shakespeare plays to open a classical theatre company, beginning with Edwin Booth's inaugural production of that play in his theatre in 1869, the newly reformed company of the Old Vic in 1929 with John Gielgud, Martita Hunt and Margaret Webster,[128] as well as the Riverside Shakespeare Company in its founding production in New York City in 1977, which used the 1968 film of Franco Zeffirelli's production as its inspiration.[129]

Music

"Romeo loved Juliet
Juliet felt the same
When he put his arms around her
He said Julie, baby, you're my flame
Thou givest fever..."
Peggy Lee's rendition of "Fever".[130]

At least 24 operas have been based on Romeo and Juliet.[131] The earliest, Romeo und Julie in 1776, a Singspiel by Georg Benda, omits much of the action of the play and most of its characters, and has a happy ending. It is occasionally revived. The best-known is Gounod's 1867 Roméo et Juliette (libretto by Jules Barbier and Michel Carré), a critical triumph when first performed and frequently revived today.[132] Bellini's I Capuleti e i Montecchi is also revived from time to time, but has sometimes been judged unfavourably because of its perceived liberties with Shakespeare; however, Bellini and his librettist, Felice Romani, worked from Italian sources—principally Romani's libretto for an opera by Nicola Vaccai—rather than directly adapting Shakespeare's play.[133]

Roméo et Juliette by Berlioz is a "symphonie dramatique", a large scale work in three parts for mixed voices, chorus and orchestra, which premiered in 1839.[134] Tchaikovsky's Romeo and Juliet Fantasy-Overture (1869, revised 1870 and 1880) is a long symphonic poem, containing the famous melody known as the "love theme".[135] Tchaikovsky's device of repeating the same musical theme at the ball, in the balcony scene, in Juliet's bedroom and in the tomb[136] has been used by subsequent directors: for example Nino Rota's love theme is used in a similar way in the 1968 film of the play, as is Des'ree's Kissing You in the 1996 film.[137] Other classical composers influenced by the play include Svendsen (Romeo og Julie, 1876), Delius (A Village Romeo and Juliet, 1899–1901) and Stenhammar (Romeo och Julia, 1922).[138]

The best-known ballet version is Prokofiev's Romeo and Juliet.[139] Originally commissioned by the Kirov Ballet, it was rejected by them when Prokofiev attempted a happy ending, and was rejected again for the experimental nature of its music. It has subsequently attained an "immense" reputation, and has been choreographed by John Cranko (1962) and Kenneth MacMillan (1965) among others.[140]

The play influenced several jazz works, including Peggy Lee's Fever.[141] Duke Ellington's Such Sweet Thunder contains a piece entitled "The Star-Crossed Lovers"[142] in which the pair are represented by tenor and alto saxophones: critics noted that Juliet's sax dominates the piece, rather than offering an image of equality.[143] The play has frequently influenced popular music, including works by The Supremes, Bruce Springsteen, Taylor Swift, Tom Waits and Lou Reed.[144] The most famous such track is Dire Straits' Romeo and Juliet.[145]

The most famous musical theatre adaptation is West Side Story with music by Leonard Bernstein and lyrics by Stephen Sondheim. It débuted on Broadway in 1957 and in the West End in 1958, and became a popular film in 1961. This version updated the setting to mid-20th century New York City, and the warring families to ethnic gangs.[146] Other musical adaptations include Terrence Mann's 1999 rock musical William Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet, co-written with Jerome Korman,[147] Gérard Presgurvic's 2001 Roméo et Juliette, de la Haine à l'Amour and Riccardo Cocciante's 2007 Giulietta & Romeo.[148]

Literature and art

Romeo and Juliet had a profound influence on subsequent literature. Before then, romance had not even been viewed as a worthy topic for tragedy.[149] In Harold Bloom's words, Shakespeare "invented the formula that the sexual becomes the erotic when crossed by the shadow of death."[150] Of Shakespeare's works, Romeo and Juliet has generated the most—and the most varied—adaptations, including prose and verse narratives, drama, opera, orchestral and choral music, ballet, film, television and painting.[151] The word "Romeo" has even become synonymous with "male lover" in English.[152]

Romeo and Juliet was parodied in Shakespeare's own lifetime: Henry Porter's Two Angry Women of Abingdon (1598) and Thomas Dekker's Blurt, Master Constable (1607) both contain balcony scenes in which a virginal heroine engages in bawdy wordplay.[153] The play directly influenced later literary works. For example the preparations for a performance form a major plot arc in Charles Dickens' Nicholas Nickleby.[154]

Romeo and Juliet is one of Shakespeare's most-illustrated works.[155] The first known illustration was a woodcut of the tomb scene,[156] thought to be by Elisha Kirkall, which appeared in Nicholas Rowe's 1709 edition of Shakespeare's plays.[157] Five paintings of the play were commissioned for the Boydell Shakespeare Gallery in the late 18th century, one representing each of the five acts of the play.[158] The nineteenth century fashion for "pictorial" performances led to directors drawing on paintings for their inspiration, which in turn influenced painters to depict actors and scenes from the theatre.[159] In the twentieth century, the play's most iconic visual images have derived from its popular film versions.[160]

Screen

Romeo and Juliet may be the most-filmed play of all time.[161] The most notable theatrical releases were George Cukor's multi-Oscar-nominated 1936 production, Franco Zeffirelli's 1968 version, and Baz Luhrmann's 1996 MTV-inspired Romeo + Juliet. The latter two were both, in their time, the highest-grossing Shakespeare film ever.[162] Romeo and Juliet was first filmed in the silent era, by Georges Méliès, although his film is now lost.[161] The play was first heard on film in The Hollywood Revue of 1929, in which John Gilbert recited the balcony scene opposite Norma Shearer.[163]

Shearer and Leslie Howard, with a combined age over 75, played the teenage lovers in George Cukor's MGM 1936 film version. Neither critics nor the public responded enthusiastically. Cinemagoers considered the film too "arty", staying away as they had from Warner's A Midsummer Night Dream a year before: leading to Hollywood abandoning the Bard for over a decade.[164] Renato Castellani won the Grand Prix at the Venice Film Festival for his 1954 film of Romeo and Juliet.[165] his Romeo, Laurence Harvey, was already an experienced screen actor.[166] By contrast, Susan Shentall, as Juliet, was a secretarial student who was discovered by the director in a London pub, and was cast for her "pale sweet skin and honey-blonde hair".[167]

Stephen Orgel describes Franco Zeffirelli's 1968 Romeo and Juliet as being "full of beautiful young people, and the camera, and the lush technicolour, make the most of their sexual energy and good looks."[168] Zeffirelli's teenage leads, Leonard Whiting and Olivia Hussey, had virtually no previous acting experience, but performed capably and with great maturity.[169] Zeffirelli has been particularly praised,[170] for his presentation of the duel scene as bravado getting out-of-control.[171] The film courted controversy by including a nude wedding-night scene[172] while Olivia Hussey was only fifteen.[173]

Baz Luhrmann's 1996 Romeo + Juliet and its accompanying soundtrack successfully targeted the "MTV Generation": a young audience of similar age to the story's characters.[174] Far darker than Zeffirelli's version, the film is set in the "crass, violent and superficial society" of Verona Beach and Sycamore Grove.[175] Leonardo DiCaprio was Romeo and Claire Danes was Juliet.

The play has been widely adapted for TV and film. In 1960, Peter Ustinov's cold-war stage parody, Romanoff and Juliet was filmed.[124] The 1961 film of West Side Story—set among New York gangs–featured the Jets as white youths, equivalent to Shakespeare's Montagues, while the Sharks, equivalent to the Capulets, are Puerto Rican.[176] The 1994 film The Punk uses both the rough plot outline of Romeo and Juliet but names many of the characters in ways which reflect the characters in the play. In 2006, Disney's High School Musical made use of Romeo and Juliet's plot, placing the two young lovers in rival high school cliques instead of feuding families.[177] Film-makers have frequently featured characters performing scenes from Romeo and Juliet.[178] The conceit of dramatising Shakespeare writing Romeo and Juliet has been used several times,[179] including John Madden's 1998 Shakespeare in Love, in which Shakespeare writes the play against the backdrop of his own doomed love affair.[180]

References

Notes

All references to Romeo and Juliet, unless otherwise specified, are taken from the Arden Shakespeare second edition (Gibbons, 1980) based on the Q2 text of 1599, with elements from Q1 of 1597.[181] Under its referencing system, which uses Roman numerals, II.ii.33 means act 2, scene 2, line 33, and a 0 in place of a scene number refers to the prologue to the act.
  1. ^ a b c Romeo and Juliet, I.0.6. Levenson (2000: 142) defines "star-cross'd" as "thwarted by a malign star".
  2. ^ [1] Facsimile of the original 1st edition (1597)
  3. ^ Gibbons (1980: 80); Levenson (2000: 139-140); Spencer (1967: 51-52). This section lists only the major and supporting characters. The play also has numerous supernumaries: further servants of Capulet (two of them named Antony and Potpan), musicians (three of them named Simon Catling, Hugh Rebeck and James Soundpost), watchmen, citizens of Verona, masquers, torchbearers and pages. Paris' page is a minor speaking role, as is Capulet's cousin, an old man. Levenson renders Abram as "Abraham". Rosaline is an important unseen character, and as such does not appear in any cast list.
  4. ^ Romeo and Juliet, III.i.72.
  5. ^ Romeo and Juliet, IV.i.105.
  6. ^ Romeo and Juliet, V.iii.308–9.
  7. ^ Halio (1998: 93).
  8. ^ Gibbons (1980: 33).
  9. ^ a b Hosley (1965: 168).
  10. ^ Gibbons (1980: 33–34); Levenson (2000: 4).
  11. ^ a b Moore (1937: 38–44).
  12. ^ Moore (1930: 264–277)
  13. ^ Gibbons (1980: 34–35).
  14. ^ Gibbons (1980: 35–36).
  15. ^ a b Gibbons (1980: 37).
  16. ^ Keeble (1980: 18).
  17. ^ Roberts (1902: 41–44); Gibbons (1980: 32, 36–37); Levenson (2000: 8–14).
  18. ^ Romeo and Juliet: I.iii.23.
  19. ^ a b Gibbons (1980: 26–27).
  20. ^ Gibbons (1980: 29–31). As well as A Midsummer Night's Dream, Gibbons draws parallels with Love's Labour's Lost and Richard II.
  21. ^ Gibbons (1980: 29).
  22. ^ a b c Spencer (1967: 284).
  23. ^ a b c Halio (1998: 1–2).
  24. ^ Gibbons (1980: 21).
  25. ^ Gibbons (1980: ix).
  26. ^ Halio (1998: 8–9).
  27. ^ a b Bowling (1949: 208–220).
  28. ^ Halio (1998: 65).
  29. ^ Romeo and Juliet, I.v.92–99.
  30. ^ a b Honegger (2006: 73–88).
  31. ^ Groves (2007: 68–69).
  32. ^ Groves (2007: 61)
  33. ^ Siegel (1961: 371–392).
  34. ^ Romeo and Juliet, II.v.38–42.
  35. ^ Romeo and Juliet, V.iii.169–170.
  36. ^ MacKenzie (2007: 22–42).
  37. ^ Romeo and Juliet, III.i.138.
  38. ^ Evans (1950: 841–865).
  39. ^ a b c Draper (1939: 16–34).
  40. ^ a b c Nevo (1969: 241–258).
  41. ^ Romeo and Juliet, I.i.167–171.
  42. ^ a b Parker (1968: 663–674).
  43. ^ Romeo and Juliet, II.ii.
  44. ^ Romeo and Juliet, I.v.42.
  45. ^ Romeo and Juliet, I.v.44–45.
  46. ^ Romeo and Juliet, II.ii.26–32.
  47. ^ Romeo and Juliet, I.v.85–86.
  48. ^ Romeo and Juliet, III.ii.17–19.
  49. ^ Halio (1998: 55–56).
  50. ^ a b c Tanselle (1964: 349–361).
  51. ^ Romeo and Juliet, III.iv.8–9.
  52. ^ Romeo and Juliet, II.ii.109–111
  53. ^ Muir (2005: 34–41).
  54. ^ Lucking (2001: 115–126).
  55. ^ Halio (1998: 55–58); Driver (1964: 363–370).
  56. ^ a b Scott (1987: 415).
  57. ^ Scott (1987: 410).
  58. ^ Scott (1987: 411–412).
  59. ^ Shapiro (1964: 498–501).
  60. ^ Bonnard (1951: 319–327).
  61. ^ a b Halio (1998: 20–30).
  62. ^ a b Halio (1998: 51).
  63. ^ Halio (1998: 47–48).
  64. ^ Halio (1998: 48–49).
  65. ^ Romeo and Juliet, II.ii.90.
  66. ^ Halio (1998: 49–50).
  67. ^ Levin (1960: 3–11).
  68. ^ Halio (1998: 51–52).
  69. ^ Halio (1998: 52–55).
  70. ^ Bloom (1998: 92–93).
  71. ^ Wells (2004: 11–13).
  72. ^ Halio (1998: 82) quoting Karl A. Meninger's 1938 Man Against Himself.
  73. ^ Appelbaum (1997: 251–272).
  74. ^ Romeo and Juliet V.i.1–11.
  75. ^ Halio (1998: 83, 81).
  76. ^ Romeo and Juliet I.v.137.
  77. ^ Halio (1998: 84–85).
  78. ^ Halio (1998: 85).
  79. ^ Romeo and Juliet, III.i.112.
  80. ^ Kahn (1977: 5–22); Halio (1998: 87–88).
  81. ^ Halio (1998: 89–90).
  82. ^ Halio (1998: 85–86).
  83. ^ Romeo and Juliet, II.i.24–26
  84. ^ Rubinstein (1989: 54)
  85. ^ Romeo and Juliet, II.ii.43–44.
  86. ^ Goldberg (1994: 221–227).
  87. ^ a b Halio (1998: 97).
  88. ^ a b Halio (1998: ix).
  89. ^ Taylor (2002: 18). The five more popular plays, in descending order, are Henry VI, Part 1, Richard III, Pericles, Hamlet and Richard II.
  90. ^ Levenson (2000: 62).
  91. ^ Dawson (2002: 176)
  92. ^ Marsden (2002: 21).
  93. ^ Van Lennep (1965).
  94. ^ a b c d Halio (1998: 100–102).
  95. ^ Levenson (2000: 71).
  96. ^ Marsden (2002: 26–27).
  97. ^ Branam (1984: 170–179); Stone (1964: 191–206).
  98. ^ Pedicord (1954: 14).
  99. ^ Morrison (2007: 231).
  100. ^ Morrison (2007: 232).
  101. ^ Gay (2002: 162).
  102. ^ Halliday (1964: 125, 365, 420).
  103. ^ The Times 30 December 1845, cited by Gay (2002: 162).
  104. ^ Potter (2001: 194–195).
  105. ^ Levenson (2000: 84)
  106. ^ Schoch (2002: 62–63).
  107. ^ Halio (1998: 104–105).
  108. ^ Winter (1893: 46–47, 57). Booth's Romeo and Juliet was rivalled in popularity only by his own "hundred night Hamlet" at The Winter Garden of four years before.
  109. ^ First page of the program for the opening night performance of Romeo and Juliet at Booth's Theatre, 3 February 1869.
  110. ^ Holland (2002: 202–203)
  111. ^ Levenson (2000: 69–70).
  112. ^ Smallwood (2002: 102).
  113. ^ Halio (1998: 105–107).
  114. ^ Smallwood (2002: 110).
  115. ^ Halio (1998: 107–109).
  116. ^ a b Levenson (2000: 87).
  117. ^ Holland (2001: 207).
  118. ^ The Times 19 September 1960, cited by Levenson (2000: 87).
  119. ^ Halio (1998: 110).
  120. ^ Halio (1998: 110–112).
  121. ^ Pape (1997: 69).
  122. ^ Quince (2000: 121–125).
  123. ^ Lujan (2005).
  124. ^ a b Howard (2000: 297).
  125. ^ Edgar (1982: 162).
  126. ^ Marks (1997).
  127. ^ Houlihan Mary, "Wherefore Art Thou, Romeo? To Make Us Laugh at Navy Pier", Chicago Sun-Times (May 16, 2004)
  128. ^ Barranger (2004: 47).
  129. ^ New York Times (1977).
  130. ^ Buhler (2007: 156); Sanders (2007: 187).
  131. ^ Meyer (1968: 36–38).
  132. ^ Sadie (1992: 31); Holden (1993: 393).
  133. ^ Collins (1982: 532–538).
  134. ^ Sanders (2007: 43-45).
  135. ^ Stites (1995: 5).
  136. ^ Romeo and Juliet I.v, II.ii, III.v, V.iii.
  137. ^ Sanders (2007: 42–43).
  138. ^ Sanders (2007: 42).
  139. ^ Nestyev (1960: 261).
  140. ^ Sanders (2007: 66–67)
  141. ^ Sanders (2007: 187).
  142. ^ Romeo and Juliet I.0.6.
  143. ^ Sanders (2007: 20).
  144. ^ Sanders (2007: 187)
  145. ^ Buhler (2007: 157)
  146. ^ Sanders (2007: 75-76).
  147. ^ Ehren (1999).
  148. ^ Arafay (2005: 186).
  149. ^ Levenson (2000: 49–50).
  150. ^ Bloom (1998: 89).
  151. ^ Levenson (2000: 91), crediting this list of genres to Stanley Wells.
  152. ^ "Romeo", Merriam-Webster Online.
  153. ^ Bly (2001: 52)
  154. ^ Muir (2005: 352–362).
  155. ^ Fowler (1996: 111)
  156. ^ Romeo and Juliet V.iii.
  157. ^ Fowler (1996:112–113).
  158. ^ Fowler (1996: 120).
  159. ^ Fowler (1996: 126–127)
  160. ^ Orgel (2007: 91).
  161. ^ a b Brode (2001: 42).
  162. ^ Rosenthal (2007: 225).
  163. ^ Brode (2001: 43).
  164. ^ Brode (2001: 48).
  165. ^ Tatspaugh (2000: 138).
  166. ^ Brode (2001: 48–9)
  167. ^ Brode (2001: 51) quoting Renato Castellani.
  168. ^ Orgel (2007: 91).
  169. ^ Brode (2001: 51–52); Rosenthal (2007: 218).
  170. ^ For example, by Anthony West of Vogue and Mollie Panter-Downes of The New Yorker, cited by Brode (2001: 51–53).
  171. ^ Brode (2001: 53).
  172. ^ Romeo and Juliet, III.v.
  173. ^ Rosenthal (2007: 218-220).
  174. ^ Tatspaugh (2000: 140).
  175. ^ Tatspaugh (2000: 142).
  176. ^ Rosenthal (2007: 215–216).
  177. ^ Daily Mail "Disney's teenage musical 'phenomenon' premieres in London". Daily Mail. September 11, 2006. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/tvshowbiz/article-404621/Disneys-teenage-musical-phenomenon-premieres-London.html. Retrieved 2007-08-19. 
  178. ^ McKernan and Terris (1994: 141–156) list 39 instances of uses of Romeo and Juliet, not including films of the play itself.
  179. ^ Lanier (2007: 96); McKernan and Terris (1994: 146).
  180. ^ Howard (2000: 310); Rosenthal (2007: 228).
  181. ^ Gibbons (1980: vii).

Secondary sources

  • Appelbaum, Robert (1997). "“Standing to the Wall”: The Pressures of Masculinity in Romeo and Juliet". Shakespeare Quarterly (Folger Shakespeare Library) 48 (3): 251. doi:10.2307/2871016. ISSN 00373222. 
  • Arafay, Mireia (2005). Books in Motion: Adaptation, Adaptability, Authorship. Editions Rodopi BV. ISBN 9789042019577. 
  • Barranger, Milly S. (2004). Margaret Webster: A Life in the Theatre. University of Michigan Press. ISBN 0472113909, 9780472113903. 
  • Bloom, Harold (1998). Shakespeare: The Invention of the Human. New York: Riverhead Books. ISBN 1573221201. 
  • Bly, Mary (2001). "The Legacy of Juliet's Desire in Comedies of the Early 1600s". in Margaret M. S. Alexander; Wells, Stanley. Shakespeare and Sexuality. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. pp. 52–71. ISBN 0521804752. 
  • Bonnard, Georges A. (1951). "Romeo and Juliet: A Possible Significance?". Review of English Studies II (5): 319–327. doi:10.1093/res/II.5.319. 
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External links


Quotes

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From Wikiquote

Romeo and Juliet, painted by Ford Madox Brown

The Most Excellent and Lamentable Tragedy of Romeo and Juliet (first published 1597) is a play by William Shakespeare concerning the fate of two young star-crossed lovers. Perhaps the most famous of his plays, it is one of his earliest theatrical triumphs and is considered the archetypal love story of the Renaissance.

Contents

Prologue

  • Two households, both alike in dignity,
    In fair Verona, where we lay our scene,
    From ancient grudge break to new mutiny,
    Where civil blood makes civil hands unclean.
    From forth the fatal loins of these two foes,
    A pair of star-cross'd lovers take their life;
    Whose misadventured piteous overthrows,
    Doth with their death bury their parents' strife.
    The fearful passage of their death-mark'd love,
    And the continuance of their parents' rage,
    Which, but their children's end, nought could 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 I

  • Abraham: Do you bite your thumb at us, sir?
    Sampson: I do bite my thumb, sir.
    Abraham: Do you bite your thumb at us, sir?
    Sampson (to Gregory): Is the law of our side if I say ay?
    Gregory: No.
    Sampson: No, sir, I do not bite my thumb at you sir; but I bite my thumb, sir.
    Gregory: Do you quarrel, sir?
    Abraham: Quarrel, sir? No, sir.
    Sampson: If you do, sir, I am for you: I serve as good a man as you.
    Abraham: No better.
    Sampson: Well, sir.
    Gregory: (to Sampson) Say 'better'; here comes one of my master's kinsmen.
    Sampson: Yes, better, sir.
    Abraham: You lie.
    Sampson: Draw, if you be men! Gregory, remember thy swashing blow.
    (They fight)
    • Scene i
  • Benvolio: Part, fools!
    Put up your swords; you know not what you do.
    (Tybalt enters)
    Tybalt: What, art thou drawn among these hartless hinds?
    Turn thee, Benvolio; look upon thy death.
    Benvolio: I do but keep the peace: put up thy sword,
    Or manage it to part these men with me.
    Tybalt: What, drawn, and talk of peace! I hate the word,
    As I hate hell, all Montagues, and thee.
    Have at thee, coward!
    • Scene i
  • Rebellious subjects, enemies to peace,
    Profaners of this neighbour-stained steel, —
    Will they not hear? — What, ho! you men, you beasts,
    That quench the fire of your pernicious rage
    With purple fountains issuing from your veins!
    On pain of torture, from those bloody hands
    Throw your mistemper'd weapons to the ground,
    And hear the sentence of your moved Prince.
    Three civil brawls, bred of an airy word,
    By thee, old Capulet, and Montague,
    Have thrice disturb'd the quiet of our streets,
    And made Verona's ancient citizens
    Cast by their grave beseeming ornaments,
    To wield old partisans, in hands as old,
    Canker'd with peace, to part your canker'd hate.
    If ever you disturb our streets again,
    Your lives shall pay the forfeit of the peace.
    For this time, all the rest depart away.
    You, Capulet, shall go along with me —
    And Montague, come you this afternoon —
    To know our further pleasure in this case,
    To old Free-town, our common judgment-place.
    Once more, on pain of death, all men depart.
    • Prince, scene i
  • Benvolio: What sadness lengthens Romeo's hours?
    Romeo: Not having that, which, having, makes them short.
    Benvolio: In love?
    Romeo: Out-
    Benvolio: Of love?
    Romeo: Out of her favour, where I am in love.
    • Scene i
  • Why then, O brawling love! O loving hate!
    O any thing, of nothing first created;
    O heavy lightness! serious vanity!
    Mis-shapen chaos of well-seeming forms!
    • Romeo, scene i
  • Romeo: Is love a tender thing? it is too rough,
    Too rude, too boisterous, and it pricks like thorn.
    Mercutio: If love be rough with you, be rough with love;
    Prick love for pricking, and you beat love down.
    • Scene iv
  • Romeo: I dream'd a dream to-night.
    Mercutio: And so did I.
    Romeo: Well, what was yours?
    Mercutio: That dreamers often lie.
    • Scene iv
  • O, then, I see Queen Mab hath been with you.
    She is the fairies’ midwife, and she comes
    In shape no bigger than an agate-stone
    On the fore-finger of an alderman,
    Drawn with a team of little atomies
    Athwart men’s noses as they lie asleep.
    • Mercutio, scene iv
  • Romeo: Peace, peace, Mercutio, peace!
    Thou talk'st of nothing.
    Mercutio: True, I talk of dreams,
    Which are the children of an idle brain,
    Begot of nothing but vain fantasy,
    Which is as thin of substance as the air
    And more inconstant than the wind, who wooes
    Even now the frozen bosom of the north,
    And, being anger'd, puffs away from thence,
    Turning his face to the dew-dropping south.
    Benvolio: This wind you talk of blows us from ourselves;
    Supper is done, and we shall come too late.
    • Scene iv
  • Did my heart love till now? Forswear it, sight!
    For I ne'er saw true beauty till this night.
    • Romeo, scene v
  • You kiss by th' book.
    • Juliet, scene v
  • My only love sprung from my only hate!
    Too early seen unknown, and known too late!
    • Juliet, scene v

Act II

  • This cannot anger him: 'twould anger him
    To raise a spirit in his mistress' circle
    Of some strange nature, letting it there stand
    Till she had laid it and conjured it down;

    That were some spite: my invocation
    Is fair and honest, and in his mistress' name
    I conjure only to raise up him.
    • Mercutio, scene i
  • But, soft! what light through yonder window breaks?
    It is the east, and Juliet is the sun!
    • Romeo, scene ii
  • O Romeo, Romeo! wherefore art thou Romeo?
    Deny thy father and refuse thy name;
    Or, if thou wilt not, be but sworn my love,
    And I'll no longer be a Capulet.
    • Juliet, scene ii
  • 'Tis but thy name that is my enemy; —
    Thou art thyself though, not a Montague.
    What's Montague? It is nor hand, nor foot,
    Nor arm, nor face, nor any other part
    Belonging to a man. O, be some other name!
    What's in a name? That which we call a rose,
    By any other name would smell as sweet
    ;
    So Romeo would, were he not Romeo call'd,
    Retain that dear perfection which he owes
    Without that title: — Romeo, doff thy name;
    And for thy name, which is no part of thee,
    Take all myself.
    • Juliet, scene ii, a variant in many published editions reads: What's in a name? That which we call a rose,
      By any other word would smell as sweet
      .
  • I take thee at thy word:
    Call me but love, and I'll be new baptis'd;
    Henceforth I never will be Romeo.
    • Romeo, scene ii
  • O, swear not by the moon, the inconstant moon,
    That monthly changes in her circled orb,
    Lest that thy love prove likewise variable.
    • Juliet, scene ii
  • Romeo: O, wilt thou leave me so unsatisfied?
    Juliet: What satisfaction canst thou have tonight?
    Romeo: The exchange of thy love's faithful vow for mine.
    Juliet: I gave thee mine before thou didst request it:
    And yet I would it were to give again.
    Romeo: Wouldst thou withdraw it? for what purpose, love?
    Juliet: But to be frank, and give it thee again.
    And yet I wish but for the thing I have;
    My bounty is as boundless as the sea,
    My love as deep; the more I give to thee,
    The more I have, for both are infinite.
    • Scene ii
  • Love goes toward love, as schoolboys from their books,
    But love from love, toward school with heavy looks.
    • Romeo, scene ii
  • Good-night, good-night! Parting is such sweet sorrow
    That I shall say good-night till it be morrow.
    • Juliet, scene ii
  • For naught so vile that on the earth doth live
    But to the earth some special good doth give;
    Nor aught so good but, strain'd from that fair use,
    Revolts from true birth, stumbling on the abuse:
    Virtue itself turns vice, being misapplied;
    And vice sometimes by action dignified.
    • Friar Lawrence, scene iii
  • Then plainly know my heart's dear love is set
    On the fair daughter of rich Capulet:
    As mine on hers, so hers is set on mine;
    And all combin'd, save what thou must combine
    By holy marriage: when, and where, and how
    We met, we woo'd, and made exchange of vow,
    I'll tell thee as we pass; but this I pray,
    That thou consent to marry us to-day.
    • Romeo to Friar Lawrence, scene iii
  • Holy Saint Francis, what a change is here!
    Is Rosaline, whom thou didst love so dear,
    So soon forsaken? Young men's love then lies
    Not truly in their hearts, but in their eyes.
    • Friar Lawrence to Romeo, scene iii

Act III

  • Thou art like one of those fellows that, when he enters the confines of a tavern, claps his sword on the table and says, God send me no need of thee! and, by the operation of the second cup, draws it on the drawer when, indeed, there is no need.
    • Mercutio to Benvolio, scene i
  • Romeo, the hate I bear thee can afford
    No better term than this: thou art a villain.
    • Tybalt, scene i
  • Mercutio: O calm, dishonourable, vile submission!
    "Alla stoccata" carries it away. (draws his sword)
    Tybalt, you rat-catcher, will you walk?
    Tybalt: What wouldst thou have with me?
    Mercutio: Good King of Cats, nothing but one of your nine lives; that I mean to make bold withal, and as you shall use me hereafter, drybeat the rest of the eight. Will you pluck your sword out of his pitcher by the ears? Make haste, lest mine be about your ears ere it be out!
    • Scene i
  • I am hurt; —
    A plague o' both the houses! — I am sped. —
    Is he gone, and hath nothing?
    • Mercutio, scene i
  • Romeo: Courage, man; the hurt cannot be much.
    Mercutio: No, 'tis not so deep as a well, nor so wide as a church-door; but 'tis enough, 'twill serve. Ask for me tomorrow, and you shall find me a grave man. I am peppered, I warrant, for this world. — A plague o' both your houses!
    • Scene i
  • Mercutio: Why the devil came you between us? I was hurt under your arm.
    Romeo: I thought all for the best.
    Mercutio: Help me into some house, Benvolio,
    Or I shall faint. — A plague o' both your houses!
    They have made worm's meat of me.
    I have it, and soundly too: — Your houses!
    • Scene i
  • Benvolio: Romeo, away, be gone!
    The citizens are up, and Tybalt slain: —
    Stand not amaz'd: — the Prince will doom thee death,
    If thou are taken: — hence! — be gone! — away!
    Romeo: O, I am fortune's fool!
    Benvolio: Why dost thou stay?
    • Scene i
  • Lady Capulet: I beg for justice, which thou, Prince, must give;
    Romeo slew Tybalt, Romeo must not live.
    Prince: Romeo slew him, he slew Mercutio;
    Who now the price of his dear blood doth owe?
    Montague: Not Romeo, Prince, he was Mercutio's friend;
    His fault concludes but what the law should end,
    The life of Tybalt.
    Prince: And for that offence
    Immediately we do exile him hence:
    I have an interest in your hate's proceeding,
    My blood for your rude brawls doth lie a-bleeding;
    But I'll amerce you with so strong a fine
    That you shall all repent the loss of mine:
    I will be deaf to pleading and excuses;
    Nor tears nor prayers shall purchase out abuses:
    Therefore use none: let Romeo hence in haste,
    Else, when he's found, that hour is his last.
    Bear hence this body and attend our will:
    Mercy but murders, pardoning those that kill.
    • Scene i
  • Come, gentle night, — come, loving black brow'd night,
    Give me my Romeo; and when he shall die,
    Take him and cut him out in little stars,
    And he will make the face of Heaven so fine
    That all the world will be in love with night,
    And pay no worship to the garish sun.
    • Juliet, scene ii
  • There's no trust,
    No faith, no honesty in men; all are perjur'd
    All foresworn, all naught, all dissemblers.
    • Nurse, scene ii
  • Wilt thou be gone? it is not yet near day.
    It was the nightingale, and not the lark,
    That pierc'd the fearful hollow of thine ear;
    Nightly she sings on yond pomegranate tree.
    Believe me love, it was the nightingale.
    • Juliet, scene v

Act IV

  • Tell me not, friar, that thou hear'st of this,
    Unless thou tell me how I may prevent it:
    If, in thy wisdom, thou canst give no help,
    Do thou but call my resolution wise,
    And with this knife I'll help it presently.
    God join'd my heart and Romeo's, thou our hands;
    And ere this hand, by thee to Romeo seal'd,
    Shall be the label to another deed,
    Or my true heart with treacherous revolt
    Turn to another, this shall slay them both:
    Therefore, out of thy long-experienc'd time,
    Give me some present counsel; or behold,
    'Twixt my extremes and me, this bloody knife
    Shall play the umpire; arbitrating that
    Which the commission of thy years and art
    Could to no issue of true honour bring.
    Be not so long to speak; I long to die,
    If what thou speak'st speak not of remedy.
    • Juliet, scene i
  • Or bid me go into a new-made grave,
    And hide me with a dead man in his shroud —
    Things that, to hear them told, have made me tremble —
    And I will do it without fear or doubt,
    To live an unstain'd wife to my sweet love.
    • Juliet, scene i
  • O woe! O woeful, woeful, woeful day!
    Most lamentable day! Most woeful day
    That ever, ever I did yet behold!
    O day, O day, O day! O hateful day!
    Never was seen so black a day as this.
    O woeful day! O woeful day!
    • Nurse, scene v

Act V

  • There is thy gold; worse poison to men's souls,
    Doing more murder in this loathsome world
    Than these poor compounds that thou mayst not sell.
    • Romeo, scene i
  • Shall I believe
    That unsubstantial death is amorous,
    And that the lean abhorred monster keeps
    Thee here in the dark to be his paramour?
    • Romeo, scene iii
  • O true apothecary! Thy drugs are quick. — Thus with a kiss I die.
    • Romeo, scene iii
  • Yea, noise,then I'll be brief;
    O, happy dagger!
    This is thy sheath; there rest, and let me die.
    • Juliet, scene iii
  • Where be these enemies? Capulet! Montague!
    See, what a scourge is laid upon your hate,
    That heaven finds means to kill your joys with love!
    And I, for winking at your discords too,
    Have lost a brace of kinsmen. All are punish'd.
    • Prince, scene iii
  • A glooming peace this morning with it brings;
    The sun for sorrow will not show his head.
    Go hence, to have more talk of these sad things;
    Some shall be pardon'd, and some punished:
    For never was a story of more woe
    Than this of Juliet and her Romeo.
    • Prince, scene iii

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Romeo and Juliet
by William Shakespeare
Romeo and Juliet is an early tragedy by William Shakespeare about two teenage "star-cross'd lovers" whose "untimely deaths" ultimately unite their feuding households. It was among Shakespeare's most popular plays during his lifetime and, along with Hamlet, is one of his most frequently performed plays. Its influence is still seen today, with the two main characters being widely represented as archetypal young lovers.
Excerpted from Romeo and Juliet on Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

See also Index:Romeo and Juliet

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Facsimile of the first page of Romeo and Juliet from the First Folio, published in 1623.

Dramatis Personae:

  • Escalus, prince of Verona
  • Paris, a young nobleman, kinsman to the prince
  • Heads of two houses at variance with each other
    • MONTAGUE
    • CAPULET
  • An old Man, cousin to Capulet.
  • Romeo, son to Montague.
  • Mercutio, kinsman to the prince, and friend to Romeo.
  • Benvolio, nephew to Montague, and friend to Romeo.
  • Tybalt, nephew to Lady Capulet.
  • Franciscans
    • FRIAR LAURENCE
    • FRIAR JOHN
  • Balthasar, servant to Romeo.
  • servants to Capulet.
    • SAMPSON
    • GREGORY
  • Peter, servant to Juliet's nurse.
  • Abraham, servant to Montague.
  • An Apothecary.
  • Three Musicians.
  • Page to Paris; another Page; an officer.
  • LADY Montague, wife to Montague.
  • LADY Capulet, wife to Capulet.
  • Juliet, daughter to Capulet.
  • Nurse to Juliet.
  • Citizens of Verona; several Men and Women, relations to both houses; Maskers, Guards, Watchmen, and Attendants.
  • Chorus.

Contents

ACT I

SCENE I. Verona. A public place.

Enter SAMPSON and GREGORY, of the house of Capulet, armed with swords and bucklers

Sampson

Gregory, o' my word, we'll not carry coals.

Gregory

No, for then we should be colliers.

Sampson

I mean, as we be in choler, we'll draw.

Gregory

Ay, while you live, draw your neck out o' the collar.

Sampson

I strike quickly, being moved.

Gregory

But thou art not quickly moved to strike.

Sampson

A dog of the house of Montague moves me.

Gregory

To move is to stir; and to be valiant is to stand:
therefore, if thou art moved, thou runn'st away.

Sampson

A dog of that house shall move me to stand: I will
take the wall of any man or maid of Montague's.

Gregory

That shows thee a weak slave; for the weakest goes
to the wall.

Sampson

True; and therefore women, being the weaker vessels,
are ever thrust to the wall: therefore I will push
Montague's men from the wall, and thrust his maids
to the wall.

Gregory

The quarrel is between our masters and us their men.

Sampson

'Tis all one, I will show myself a tyrant: when I
have fought with the men, I will be cruel with the
maids, and cut off their heads.

Gregory

The heads of the maids?

Sampson

Ay, the heads of the maids, or their maidenheads;
take it in what sense thou wilt.

Gregory

They must take it in sense that feel it.

Sampson

Me they shall feel while I am able to stand: and
'tis known I am a pretty piece of flesh.

Gregory

'Tis well thou art not fish; if thou hadst, thou
hadst been poor John. Draw thy tool! here comes
two of the house of the Montagues.

Sampson

My naked weapon is out: quarrel, I will back thee.

Gregory

How! turn thy back and run?

Sampson

Fear me not.

Gregory

No, marry; I fear thee!

Sampson

Let us take the law of our sides; let them begin.

Gregory

I will frown as I pass by, and let them take it as
they list.

Sampson

Nay, as they dare. I will bite my thumb at them;
which is a disgrace to them, if they bear it.

Enter ABRAHAM and BALTHASAR

Abraham

Do you bite your thumb at us, sir?

Sampson

I do bite my thumb, sir.

Abraham

Do you bite your thumb at us, sir?

Sampson

Aside to GREGORY Is the law of our side, if I say
ay?

Gregory

No.

Sampson

No, sir, I do not bite my thumb at you, sir, but I
bite my thumb, sir.

Gregory

Do you quarrel, sir?

Abraham

Quarrel sir! no, sir.

Sampson

If you do, sir, I am for you: I serve as good a man as you.

Abraham

No better.

Sampson

Well, sir.

Gregory

Say 'better:' here comes one of my master's kinsmen.

Sampson

Yes, better, sir.

Abraham

You lie.

Sampson

Draw, if you be men. Gregory, remember thy swashing blow.

They fight
Enter BENVOLIO

Benvolio

Part, fools!
Put up your swords; you know not what you do.

Beats down their swords Enter TYBALT

Tybalt

What, art thou drawn among these heartless hinds?
Turn thee, Benvolio, look upon thy death.

Benvolio

I do but keep the peace: put up thy sword,
Or manage it to part these men with me.

Tybalt

What, drawn, and talk of peace! I hate the word,
As I hate hell, all Montagues, and thee:
Have at thee, coward!

They fight
Enter, several of both houses, who join the fray; then enter Citizens, with clubs

First citizen

Clubs, bills, and partisans! strike! beat them down!
Down with the Capulets! down with the Montagues!

Enter CAPULET in his gown, and LADY CAPULET

Capulet

What noise is this? Give me my long sword, ho!

Lady Capulet

A crutch, a crutch! why call you for a sword?

Capulet

My sword, I say! Old Montague is come,
And flourishes his blade in spite of me.

Enter MONTAGUE and LADY MONTAGUE

Montague

Thou villain Capulet,--Hold me not, let me go.

Lady Montague

Thou shalt not stir a foot to seek a foe.

Enter PRINCE, with Attendants

Prince

Rebellious subjects, enemies to peace,
Profaners of this neighbour-stained steel,--
Will they not hear? What, ho! you men, you beasts,
That quench the fire of your pernicious rage
With purple fountains issuing from your veins,
On pain of torture, from those bloody hands
Throw your mistemper'd weapons to the ground,
And hear the sentence of your moved prince.
Three civil brawls, bred of an airy word,
By thee, old Capulet, and Montague,
Have thrice disturb'd the quiet of our streets,
And made Verona's ancient citizens
Cast by their grave beseeming ornaments,
To wield old partisans, in hands as old,
Canker'd with peace, to part your canker'd hate:
If ever you disturb our streets again,
Your lives shall pay the forfeit of the peace.
For this time, all the rest depart away:
You Capulet; shall go along with me:
And, Montague, come you this afternoon,
To know our further pleasure in this case,
To old Free-town, our common judgment-place.
Once more, on pain of death, all men depart.

Exeunt all but MONTAGUE, LADY MONTAGUE, and BENVOLIO

Montague

Who set this ancient quarrel new abroach?
Speak, nephew, were you by when it began?

Benvolio

Here were the servants of your adversary,
And yours, close fighting ere I did approach:
I drew to part them: in the instant came
The fiery Tybalt, with his sword prepared,
Which, as he breathed defiance to my ears,
He swung about his head and cut the winds,
Who nothing hurt withal hiss'd him in scorn:
While we were interchanging thrusts and blows,
Came more and more and fought on part and part,
Till the prince came, who parted either part.

Lady Montague

O, where is Romeo? saw you him to-day?
Right glad I am he was not at this fray.

Benvolio

Madam, an hour before the worshipp'd sun
Peer'd forth the golden window of the east,
A troubled mind drave me to walk abroad;
Where, underneath the grove of sycamore
That westward rooteth from the city's side,
So early walking did I see your son:
Towards him I made, but he was ware of me
And stole into the covert of the wood:
I, measuring his affections by my own,
That most are busied when they're most alone,
Pursued my humour not pursuing his,
And gladly shunn'd who gladly fled from me.

Montague

Many a morning hath he there been seen,
With tears augmenting the fresh morning dew.
Adding to clouds more clouds with his deep sighs;
But all so soon as the all-cheering sun
Should in the furthest east begin to draw
The shady curtains from Aurora's bed,
Away from the light steals home my heavy son,
And private in his chamber pens himself,
Shuts up his windows, locks fair daylight out
And makes himself an artificial night:
Black and portentous must this humour prove,
Unless good counsel may the cause remove.

Benvolio

My noble uncle, do you know the cause?

Montague

I neither know it nor can learn of him.

Benvolio

Have you importuned him by any means?

Montague

Both by myself and many other friends:
But he, his own affections' counsellor,
Is to himself--I will not say how true--
But to himself so secret and so close,
So far from sounding and discovery,
As is the bud bit with an envious worm,
Ere he can spread his sweet leaves to the air,
Or dedicate his beauty to the sun.
Could we but learn from whence his sorrows grow.
We would as willingly give cure as know.

Enter ROMEO

Benvolio

See, where he comes: so please you, step aside;
I'll know his grievance, or be much denied.

Montague

I would thou wert so happy by thy stay,
To hear true shrift. Come, madam, let's away.

Exeunt MONTAGUE and LADY MONTAGUE

Benvolio

Good-morrow, cousin.

Romeo

Is the day so young?

Benvolio

But new struck nine.

Romeo

Ay me! sad hours seem long.
Was that my father that went hence so fast?

Benvolio

It was. What sadness lengthens Romeo's hours?

Romeo

Not having that, which, having, makes them short.

Benvolio

In love?

Romeo

Out--

Benvolio

Of love?

Romeo

Out of her favour, where I am in love.

Benvolio

Alas, that love, so gentle in his view,
Should be so tyrannous and rough in proof!

Romeo

Alas, that love, whose view is muffled still,
Should, without eyes, see pathways to his will!
Where shall we dine? O me! What fray was here?
Yet tell me not, for I have heard it all.
Here's much to do with hate, but more with love.
Why, then, O brawling love! O loving hate!
O any thing, of nothing first create!
O heavy lightness! serious vanity!
Mis-shapen chaos of well-seeming forms!
Feather of lead, bright smoke, cold fire,
sick health!
Still-waking sleep, that is not what it is!
This love feel I, that feel no love in this.
Dost thou not laugh?

Benvolio

No, coz, I rather weep.

Romeo

Good heart, at what?

Benvolio

At thy good heart's oppression.

Romeo

Why, such is love's transgression.
Griefs of mine own lie heavy in my breast,
Which thou wilt propagate, to have it prest
With more of thine: this love that thou hast shown
Doth add more grief to too much of mine own.
Love is a smoke raised with the fume of sighs;
Being purged, a fire sparkling in lovers' eyes;
Being vex'd a sea nourish'd with lovers' tears:
What is it else? a madness most discreet,
A choking gall and a preserving sweet.
Farewell, my coz.

Benvolio

Soft! I will go along;
An if you leave me so, you do me wrong.

Romeo

Tut, I have lost myself; I am not here;
This is not Romeo, he's some other where.

Benvolio

Tell me in sadness, who is that you love.

Romeo

What, shall I groan and tell thee?

Benvolio

Groan! why, no.
But sadly tell me who.

Romeo

Bid a sick man in sadness make his will:
Ah, word ill urged to one that is so ill!
In sadness, cousin, I do love a woman.

Benvolio

I aim'd so near, when I supposed you loved.

Romeo

A right good mark-man! And she's fair I love.

Benvolio

A right fair mark, fair coz, is soonest hit.

Romeo

Well, in that hit you miss: she'll not be hit
With Cupid's arrow; she hath Dian's wit;
And, in strong proof of chastity well arm'd,
From love's weak childish bow she lives unharm'd.
She will not stay the siege of loving terms,
Nor bide the encounter of assailing eyes,
Nor ope her lap to saint-seducing gold:
O, she is rich in beauty, only poor,
That when she dies with beauty dies her store.

Benvolio

Then she hath sworn that she will still live chaste?

Romeo

She hath, and in that sparing makes huge waste,
For beauty starved with her severity
Cuts beauty off from all posterity.
She is too fair, too wise, wisely too fair,
To merit bliss by making me despair:
She hath forsworn to love, and in that vow
Do I live dead that live to tell it now.

Benvolio

Be ruled by me, forget to think of her.

Romeo

O, teach me how I should forget to think.

Benvolio

By giving liberty unto thine eyes;
Examine other beauties.

Romeo

'Tis the way
To call hers exquisite, in question more:
These happy masks that kiss fair ladies' brows
Being black put us in mind they hide the fair;
He that is strucken blind cannot forget
The precious treasure of his eyesight lost:
Show me a mistress that is passing fair,
What doth her beauty serve, but as a note
Where I may read who pass'd that passing fair?
Farewell: thou canst not teach me to forget.

Benvolio

I'll pay that doctrine, or else die in debt.

Exeunt

SCENE II. A street.

Enter CAPULET, PARIS, and Servant

Capulet

But Montague is bound as well as I,
In penalty alike; and 'tis not hard, I think,
For men so old as we to keep the peace.

Paris

Of honourable reckoning are you both;
And pity 'tis you lived at odds so long.
But now, my lord, what say you to my suit?

Capulet

But saying o'er what I have said before:
My child is yet a stranger in the world;
She hath not seen the change of fourteen years,
Let two more summers wither in their pride,
Ere we may think her ripe to be a bride.

Paris

Younger than she are happy mothers made.

Capulet

And too soon marr'd are those so early made.
The earth hath swallow'd all my hopes but she,
She is the hopeful lady of my earth:
But woo her, gentle Paris, get her heart,
My will to her consent is but a part;
An she agree, within her scope of choice
Lies my consent and fair according voice.
This night I hold an old accustom'd feast,
Whereto I have invited many a guest,
Such as I love; and you, among the store,
One more, most welcome, makes my number more.
At my poor house look to behold this night
Earth-treading stars that make dark heaven light:
Such comfort as do lusty young men feel
When well-apparell'd April on the heel
Of limping winter treads, even such delight
Among fresh female buds shall you this night
Inherit at my house; hear all, all see,
And like her most whose merit most shall be:
Which on more view, of many mine being one
May stand in number, though in reckoning none,
Come, go with me.

To Servant, giving a paper

Go, sirrah, trudge about
Through fair Verona; find those persons out
Whose names are written there, and to them say,
My house and welcome on their pleasure stay.

Exeunt CAPULET and PARIS

Servant

Find them out whose names are written here! It is
written, that the shoemaker should meddle with his
yard, and the tailor with his last, the fisher with
his pencil, and the painter with his nets; but I am
sent to find those persons whose names are here
writ, and can never find what names the writing
person hath here writ. I must to the learned.--In good time.

Enter BENVOLIO and ROMEO

Benvolio

Tut, man, one fire burns out another's burning,
One pain is lessen'd by another's anguish;
Turn giddy, and be holp by backward turning;
One desperate grief cures with another's languish:
Take thou some new infection to thy eye,
And the rank poison of the old will die.

Romeo

Your plaintain-leaf is excellent for that.

Benvolio

For what, I pray thee?

Romeo

For your broken shin.

Benvolio

Why, Romeo, art thou mad?

Romeo

Not mad, but bound more than a mad-man is;
Shut up in prison, kept without my food,
Whipp'd and tormented and--God-den, good fellow.

Servant

God gi' god-den. I pray, sir, can you read?

Romeo

Ay, mine own fortune in my misery.

Servant

Perhaps you have learned it without book: but, I
pray, can you read any thing you see?

Romeo

Ay, if I know the letters and the language.

Servant

Ye say honestly: rest you merry!

Romeo

Stay, fellow; I can read.

Reads

'Signior Martino and his wife and daughters;
County Anselme and his beauteous sisters; the lady
widow of Vitravio; Signior Placentio and his lovely
nieces; Mercutio and his brother Valentine; mine
uncle Capulet, his wife and daughters; my fair niece
Rosaline; Livia; Signior Valentio and his cousin
Tybalt, Lucio and the lively Helena.' A fair
assembly: whither should they come?

Servant

Up.

Romeo

Whither?

Servant

To supper; to our house.

Romeo

Whose house?

Servant

My master's.

Romeo

Indeed, I should have ask'd you that before.

Servant

Now I'll tell you without asking: my master is the
great rich Capulet; and if you be not of the house
of Montagues, I pray, come and crush a cup of wine.
Rest you merry!

Exit

Benvolio

At this same ancient feast of Capulet's
Sups the fair Rosaline whom thou so lovest,
With all the admired beauties of Verona:
Go thither; and, with unattainted eye,
Compare her face with some that I shall show,
And I will make thee think thy swan a crow.

Romeo

When the devout religion of mine eye
Maintains such falsehood, then turn tears to fires;
And these, who often drown'd could never die,
Transparent heretics, be burnt for liars!
One fairer than my love! the all-seeing sun
Ne'er saw her match since first the world begun.

Benvolio

Tut, you saw her fair, none else being by,
Herself poised with herself in either eye:
But in that crystal scales let there be weigh'd
Your lady's love against some other maid
That I will show you shining at this feast,
And she shall scant show well that now shows best.

Romeo

I'll go along, no such sight to be shown,
But to rejoice in splendor of mine own.

Exeunt

SCENE III. A room in Capulet's house.

Enter LADY Capulet and Nurse

Lady Capulet

Nurse, where's my daughter? call her forth to me.

Nurse

Now, by my maidenhead, at twelve year old,
I bade her come. What, lamb! what, ladybird!
God forbid! Where's this girl? What, Juliet!

Enter JULIET

Juliet

How now! who calls?

Nurse

Your mother.

Juliet

Madam, I am here.
What is your will?

Lady Capulet

This is the matter:--Nurse, give leave awhile,
We must talk in secret:--nurse, come back again;
I have remember'd me, thou's hear our counsel.
Thou know'st my daughter's of a pretty age.

Nurse

Faith, I can tell her age unto an hour.

Lady Capulet

She's not fourteen.

Nurse

I'll lay fourteen of my teeth,--
And yet, to my teeth be it spoken, I have but four--
She is not fourteen. How long is it now
To Lammas-tide?

Lady Capulet

A fortnight and odd days.

Nurse

Even or odd, of all days in the year,
Come Lammas-eve at night shall she be fourteen.
Susan and she--God rest all Christian souls!--
Were of an age: well, Susan is with God;
She was too good for me: but, as I said,
On Lammas-eve at night shall she be fourteen;
That shall she, marry; I remember it well.
'Tis since the earthquake now eleven years;
And she was wean'd,--I never shall forget it,--
Of all the days of the year, upon that day:
For I had then laid wormwood to my dug,
Sitting in the sun under the dove-house wall;
My lord and you were then at Mantua:--
Nay, I do bear a brain:--but, as I said,
When it did taste the wormwood on the nipple
Of my dug and felt it bitter, pretty fool,
To see it tetchy and fall out with the dug!
Shake quoth the dove-house: 'twas no need, I trow,
To bid me trudge:
And since that time it is eleven years;
For then she could stand alone; nay, by the rood,
She could have run and waddled all about;
For even the day before, she broke her brow:
And then my husband--God be with his soul!
A' was a merry man--took up the child:
'Yea,' quoth he, 'dost thou fall upon thy face?
Thou wilt fall backward when thou hast more wit;
Wilt thou not, Jule?' and, by my holidame,
The pretty wretch left crying and said 'Ay.'
To see, now, how a jest shall come about!
I warrant, an I should live a thousand years,
I never should forget it: 'Wilt thou not, Jule?' quoth he;
And, pretty fool, it stinted and said 'Ay.'

Lady Capulet

Enough of this; I pray thee, hold thy peace.

Nurse

Yes, madam: yet I cannot choose but laugh,
To think it should leave crying and say 'Ay.'
And yet, I warrant, it had upon its brow
A bump as big as a young cockerel's stone;
A parlous knock; and it cried bitterly:
'Yea,' quoth my husband,'fall'st upon thy face?
Thou wilt fall backward when thou comest to age;
Wilt thou not, Jule?' it stinted and said 'Ay.'

Juliet

And stint thou too, I pray thee, nurse, say I.

Nurse

Peace, I have done. God mark thee to his grace!
Thou wast the prettiest babe that e'er I nursed:
An I might live to see thee married once,
I have my wish.

Lady Capulet

Marry, that 'marry' is the very theme
I came to talk of. Tell me, daughter Juliet,
How stands your disposition to be married?

Juliet

It is an honour that I dream not of.

Nurse

An honour! were not I thine only nurse,
I would say thou hadst suck'd wisdom from thy teat.

Lady Capulet

Well, think of marriage now; younger than you,
Here in Verona, ladies of esteem,
Are made already mothers: by my count,
I was your mother much upon these years
That you are now a maid. Thus then in brief:
The valiant Paris seeks you for his love.

Nurse

A man, young lady! lady, such a man
As all the world--why, he's a man of wax.

Lady Capulet

Verona's summer hath not such a flower.

Nurse

Nay, he's a flower; in faith, a very flower.

Lady Capulet

What say you? can you love the gentleman?
This night you shall behold him at our feast;
Read o'er the volume of young Paris' face,
And find delight writ there with beauty's pen;
Examine every married lineament,
And see how one another lends content
And what obscured in this fair volume lies
Find written in the margent of his eyes.
This precious book of love, this unbound lover,
To beautify him, only lacks a cover:
The fish lives in the sea, and 'tis much pride
For fair without the fair within to hide:
That book in many's eyes doth share the glory,
That in gold clasps locks in the golden story;
So shall you share all that he doth possess,
By having him, making yourself no less.

Nurse

No less! nay, bigger; women grow by men.

Lady Capulet

Speak briefly, can you like of Paris' love?

Juliet

I'll look to like, if looking liking move:
But no more deep will I endart mine eye
Than your consent gives strength to make it fly.

Enter a Servant

Servant

Madam, the guests are come, supper served up, you
called, my young lady asked for, the nurse cursed in
the pantry, and every thing in extremity. I must
hence to wait; I beseech you, follow straight.

Lady Capulet

We follow thee.

Exit Servant

Juliet, the county stays.

Nurse

Go, girl, seek happy nights to happy days.

Exeunt

SCENE IV. A street.

Enter ROMEO, MERCUTIO, BENVOLIO, with five or six Maskers, Torch-bearers, and others

Romeo

What, shall this speech be spoke for our excuse?
Or shall we on without a apology?

Benvolio

The date is out of such prolixity:
We'll have no Cupid hoodwink'd with a scarf,
Bearing a Tartar's painted bow of lath,
Scaring the ladies like a crow-keeper;
Nor no without-book prologue, faintly spoke
After the prompter, for our entrance:
But let them measure us by what they will;
We'll measure them a measure, and be gone.

Romeo

Give me a torch: I am not for this ambling;
Being but heavy, I will bear the light.

Mercutio

Nay, gentle Romeo, we must have you dance.

Romeo

Not I, believe me: you have dancing shoes
With nimble soles: I have a soul of lead
So stakes me to the ground I cannot move.

Mercutio

You are a lover; borrow Cupid's wings,
And soar with them above a common bound.

Romeo

I am too sore enpierced with his shaft
To soar with his light feathers, and so bound,
I cannot bound a pitch above dull woe:
Under love's heavy burden do I sink.

Mercutio

And, to sink in it, should you burden love;
Too great oppression for a tender thing.

Romeo

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

Mercutio

If love be rough with you, be rough with love;
Prick love for pricking, and you beat love down.
Give me a case to put my visage in:
A visor for a visor! what care I
What curious eye doth quote deformities?
Here are the beetle brows shall blush for me.

Benvolio

Come, knock and enter; and no sooner in,
But every man betake him to his legs.

Romeo

A torch for me: let wantons light of heart
Tickle the senseless rushes with their heels,
For I am proverb'd with a grandsire phrase;
I'll be a candle-holder, and look on.
The game was ne'er so fair, and I am done.

Mercutio

Tut, dun's the mouse, the constable's own word:
If thou art dun, we'll draw thee from the mire
Of this sir-reverence love, wherein thou stick'st
Up to the ears. Come, we burn daylight, ho!

Romeo

Nay, that's not so.

Mercutio

I mean, sir, in delay
We waste our lights in vain, like lamps by day.
Take our good meaning, for our judgment sits
Five times in that ere once in our five wits.

Romeo

And we mean well in going to this mask;
But 'tis no wit to go.

Mercutio

Why, may one ask?

Romeo

I dream'd a dream to-night.

Mercutio

And so did I.

Romeo

Well, what was yours?

Mercutio

That dreamers often lie.

Romeo

In bed asleep, while they do dream things true.

Mercutio

O, then, I see Queen Mab hath been with you.
She is the fairies' midwife, and she comes
In shape no bigger than an agate-stone
On the fore-finger of an alderman,
Drawn with a team of little atomies
Athwart men's noses as they lie asleep;
Her wagon-spokes made of long spiders' legs,
The cover of the wings of grasshoppers,
The traces of the smallest spider's web,
The collars of the moonshine's watery beams,
Her whip of cricket's bone, the lash of film,
Her wagoner a small grey-coated gnat,
Not so big as a round little worm
Prick'd from the lazy finger of a maid;
Her chariot is an empty hazel-nut
Made by the joiner squirrel or old grub,
Time out o' mind the fairies' coachmakers.
And in this state she gallops night by night
Through lovers' brains, and then they dream of love;
O'er courtiers' knees, that dream on court'sies straight,
O'er lawyers' fingers, who straight dream on fees,
O'er ladies ' lips, who straight on kisses dream,
Which oft the angry Mab with blisters plagues,
Because their breaths with sweetmeats tainted are:
Sometime she gallops o'er a courtier's nose,
And then dreams he of smelling out a suit;
And sometime comes she with a tithe-pig's tail
Tickling a parson's nose as a' lies asleep,
Then dreams, he of another benefice:
Sometime she driveth o'er a soldier's neck,
And then dreams he of cutting foreign throats,
Of breaches, ambuscadoes, Spanish blades,
Of healths five-fathom deep; and then anon
Drums in his ear, at which he starts and wakes,
And being thus frighted swears a prayer or two
And sleeps again. This is that very Mab
That plats the manes of horses in the night,
And bakes the elflocks in foul sluttish hairs,
Which once untangled, much misfortune bodes:
This is the hag, when maids lie on their backs,
That presses them and learns them first to bear,
Making them women of good carriage:
This is she--

Romeo

Peace, peace, Mercutio, peace!
Thou talk'st of nothing.

Mercutio

True, I talk of dreams,
Which are the children of an idle brain,
Begot of nothing but vain fantasy,
Which is as thin of substance as the air
And more inconstant than the wind, who wooes
Even now the frozen bosom of the north,
And, being anger'd, puffs away from thence,
Turning his face to the dew-dropping south.

Benvolio

This wind, you talk of, blows us from ourselves;
Supper is done, and we shall come too late.

Romeo

I fear, too early: for my mind misgives
Some consequence yet hanging in the stars
Shall bitterly begin his fearful date
With this night's revels and expire the term
Of a despised life closed in my breast
By some vile forfeit of untimely death.
But He, that hath the steerage of my course,
Direct my sail! On, lusty gentlemen.

Benvolio

Strike, drum.

Exeunt

SCENE V. A hall in Capulet's house.

Musicians waiting. Enter Servingmen with napkins

First servant

Where's Potpan, that he helps not to take away? He
shift a trencher? he scrape a trencher!

Second servant

When good manners shall lie all in one or two men's
hands and they unwashed too, 'tis a foul thing.

First servant

Away with the joint-stools, remove the
court-cupboard, look to the plate. Good thou, save
me a piece of marchpane; and, as thou lovest me, let
the porter let in Susan Grindstone and Nell.
Antony, and Potpan!

Second servant

Ay, boy, ready.

First servant

You are looked for and called for, asked for and
sought for, in the great chamber.

Second servant

We cannot be here and there too. Cheerly, boys; be
brisk awhile, and the longer liver take all.

Enter CAPULET, with JULIET and others of his house, meeting the Guests and Maskers

Capulet

Welcome, gentlemen! ladies that have their toes
Unplagued with corns will have a bout with you.
Ah ha, my mistresses! which of you all
Will now deny to dance? she that makes dainty,
She, I'll swear, hath corns; am I come near ye now?
Welcome, gentlemen! I have seen the day
That I have worn a visor and could tell
A whispering tale in a fair lady's ear,
Such as would please: 'tis gone, 'tis gone, 'tis gone:
You are welcome, gentlemen! come, musicians, play.
A hall, a hall! give room! and foot it, girls.

Music plays, and they dance

More light, you knaves; and turn the tables up,
And quench the fire, the room is grown too hot.
Ah, sirrah, this unlook'd-for sport comes well.
Nay, sit, nay, sit, good cousin Capulet;
For you and I are past our dancing days:
How long is't now since last yourself and I
Were in a mask?

Second capulet

By'r lady, thirty years.

Capulet

What, man! 'tis not so much, 'tis not so much:
'Tis since the nuptials of Lucentio,
Come pentecost as quickly as it will,
Some five and twenty years; and then we mask'd.

Second capulet

'Tis more, 'tis more, his son is elder, sir;
His son is thirty.

Capulet

Will you tell me that?
His son was but a ward two years ago.

Romeo

To a Servingman What lady is that, which doth
enrich the hand
Of yonder knight?

Servant

I know not, sir.

Romeo

O, she doth teach the torches to burn bright!
It seems she hangs upon the cheek of night
Like a rich jewel in an Ethiope's ear;
Beauty too rich for use, for earth too dear!
So shows a snowy dove trooping with crows,
As yonder lady o'er her fellows shows.
The measure done, I'll watch her place of stand,
And, touching hers, make blessed my rude hand.
Did my heart love till now? forswear it, sight!
For I ne'er saw true beauty till this night.

Tybalt

This, by his voice, should be a Montague.
Fetch me my rapier, boy. What dares the slave
Come hither, cover'd with an antic face,
To fleer and scorn at our solemnity?
Now, by the stock and honour of my kin,
To strike him dead, I hold it not a sin.

Capulet

Why, how now, kinsman! wherefore storm you so?

Tybalt

Uncle, this is a Montague, our foe,
A villain that is hither come in spite,
To scorn at our solemnity this night.

Capulet

Young Romeo is it?

Tybalt

'Tis he, that villain Romeo.

Capulet

Content thee, gentle coz, let him alone;
He bears him like a portly gentleman;
And, to say truth, Verona brags of him
To be a virtuous and well-govern'd youth:
I would not for the wealth of all the town
Here in my house do him disparagement:
Therefore be patient, take no note of him:
It is my will, the which if thou respect,
Show a fair presence and put off these frowns,
And ill-beseeming semblance for a feast.

Tybalt

It fits, when such a villain is a guest:
I'll not endure him.

Capulet

He shall be endured:
What, goodman boy! I say, he shall: go to;
Am I the master here, or you? go to.
You'll not endure him! God shall mend my soul!
You'll make a mutiny among my guests!
You will set cock-a-hoop! you'll be the man!

Tybalt

Why, uncle, 'tis a shame.

Capulet

Go to, go to;
You are a saucy boy: is't so, indeed?
This trick may chance to scathe you, I know what:
You must contrary me! marry, 'tis time.
Well said, my hearts! You are a princox; go:
Be quiet, or--More light, more light! For shame!
I'll make you quiet. What, cheerly, my hearts!

Tybalt

Patience perforce with wilful choler meeting
Makes my flesh tremble in their different greeting.
I will withdraw: but this intrusion shall
Now seeming sweet convert to bitter gall.

Exit

Romeo

To JULIET If I profane with my unworthiest hand
This holy shrine, the gentle fine is this:
My lips, two blushing pilgrims, ready stand
To smooth that rough touch with a tender kiss.

Juliet

Good pilgrim, you do wrong your hand too much,
Which mannerly devotion shows in this;
For saints have hands that pilgrims' hands do touch,
And palm to palm is holy palmers' kiss.

Romeo

Have not saints lips, and holy palmers too?

Juliet

Ay, pilgrim, lips that they must use in prayer.

Romeo

O, then, dear saint, let lips do what hands do;
They pray, grant thou, lest faith turn to despair.

Juliet

Saints do not move, though grant for prayers' sake.

Romeo

Then move not, while my prayer's effect I take.
Thus from my lips, by yours, my sin is purged.

Juliet

Then have my lips the sin that they have took.

Romeo

Sin from thy lips? O trespass sweetly urged!
Give me my sin again.

Juliet

You kiss by the book.

Nurse

Madam, your mother craves a word with you.

Romeo

What is her mother?

Nurse

Marry, bachelor,
Her mother is the lady of the house,
And a good lady, and a wise and virtuous
I nursed her daughter, that you talk'd withal;
I tell you, he that can lay hold of her
Shall have the chinks.

Romeo

Is she a Capulet?
O dear account! my life is my foe's debt.

Benvolio

Away, begone; the sport is at the best.

Romeo

Ay, so I fear; the more is my unrest.

Capulet

Nay, gentlemen, prepare not to be gone;
We have a trifling foolish banquet towards.
Is it e'en so? why, then, I thank you all
I thank you, honest gentlemen; good night.
More torches here! Come on then, let's to bed.
Ah, sirrah, by my fay, it waxes late:
I'll to my rest.

Exeunt all but JULIET and Nurse

Juliet

Come hither, nurse. What is yond gentleman?

Nurse

The son and heir of old Tiberio.

Juliet

What's he that now is going out of door?

Nurse

Marry, that, I think, be young Petrucio.

Juliet

What's he that follows there, that would not dance?

Nurse

I know not.

Juliet

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

Nurse

His name is Romeo, and a Montague;
The only son of your great enemy.

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.

Nurse

What's this? what's this?

Juliet

A rhyme I learn'd even now
Of one I danced withal.

One calls within 'Juliet.'

Nurse

Anon, anon!
Come, let's away; the strangers all are gone.

Exeunt

ACT II

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PROLOGUE

Enter Chorus

Chorus

Now old desire doth in his death-bed lie,
And young affection gapes to be his heir;
That fair for which love groan'd for and would die,
With tender Juliet match'd, is now not fair.
Now Romeo is beloved and loves again,
Alike betwitched by the charm of looks,
But to his foe supposed he must complain,
And she steal love's sweet bait from fearful hooks:
Being held a foe, he may not have access
To breathe such vows as lovers use to swear;
And she as much in love, her means much less
To meet her new-beloved any where:
But passion lends them power, time means, to meet
Tempering extremities with extreme sweet.

Exit

SCENE I. A lane by the wall of Capulet's orchard.

Enter ROMEO

Romeo

Can I go forward when my heart is here?
Turn back, dull earth, and find thy centre out.

He climbs the wall, and leaps down within it
Enter BENVOLIO and MERCUTIO

Benvolio

Romeo! my cousin Romeo!

Mercutio

He is wise;
And, on my lie, hath stol'n him home to bed.

Benvolio

He ran this way, and leap'd this orchard wall:
Call, good Mercutio.

Mercutio

Nay, I'll conjure too.
Romeo! humours! madman! passion! lover!
Appear thou in the likeness of a sigh:
Speak but one rhyme, and I am satisfied;
Cry but 'Ay me!' pronounce but 'love' and 'dove;'
Speak to my gossip Venus one fair word,
One nick-name for her purblind son and heir,
Young Adam Cupid, he that shot so trim,
When King Cophetua loved the beggar-maid!
He heareth not, he stirreth not, he moveth not;
The ape is dead, and I must conjure him.
I conjure thee by Rosaline's bright eyes,
By her high forehead and her scarlet lip,
By her fine foot, straight leg and quivering thigh
And the demesnes that there adjacent lie,
That in thy likeness thou appear to us!

Benvolio

And if he hear thee, thou wilt anger him.

Mercutio

This cannot anger him: 'twould anger him
To raise a spirit in his mistress' circle
Of some strange nature, letting it there stand
Till she had laid it and conjured it down;
That were some spite: my invocation
Is fair and honest, and in his mistress' name
I conjure only but to raise up him.

Benvolio

Come, he hath hid himself among these trees,
To be consorted with the humorous night:
Blind is his love and best befits the dark.

Mercutio

If love be blind, love cannot hit the mark.
Now will he sit under a medlar tree,
And wish his mistress were that kind of fruit
As maids call medlars, when they laugh alone.
Romeo, that she were, O, that she were
An open et caetera, thou a poperin pear!
Romeo, good night: I'll to my truckle-bed;
This field-bed is too cold for me to sleep:
Come, shall we go?

Benvolio

Go, then; for 'tis in vain
To seek him here that means not to be found.

Exeunt

SCENE II. Capulet's orchard.

Enter ROMEO

Romeo

He jests at scars that never felt a wound.

JULIET appears above at a window

But, soft! what light through yonder window breaks?
It is the east, and Juliet is the sun.
Arise, fair sun, and kill the envious moon,
Who is already sick and pale with grief,
That thou her maid art far more fair than she:
Be not her maid, since she is envious;
Her vestal livery is but sick and green
And none but fools do wear it; cast it off.
It is my lady, O, it is my love!
O, that she knew she were!
She speaks yet she says nothing: what of that?
Her eye discourses; I will answer it.
I am too bold, 'tis not to me she speaks:
Two of the fairest stars in all the heaven,
Having some business, do entreat her eyes
To twinkle in their spheres till they return.
What if her eyes were there, they in her head?
The brightness of her cheek would shame those stars,
As daylight doth a lamp; her eyes in heaven
Would through the airy region stream so bright
That birds would sing and think it were not night.
See, how she leans her cheek upon her hand!
O, that I were a glove upon that hand,
That I might touch that cheek!

Juliet

Ay me!

Romeo

She speaks:
O, speak again, bright angel! for thou art
As glorious to this night, being o'er my head
As is a winged messenger of heaven
Unto the white-upturned wondering eyes
Of mortals that fall back to gaze on him
When he bestrides the lazy-pacing clouds
And sails upon the bosom of the air.

Juliet

O Romeo, Romeo! wherefore art thou Romeo?
Deny thy father and refuse thy name;
Or, if thou wilt not, be but sworn my love,
And I'll no longer be a Capulet.

Romeo

Aside Shall I hear more, or shall I speak at this?

Juliet

'Tis but thy name that is my enemy;
Thou art thyself, though not a Montague.
What's Montague? it is nor hand, nor foot,
Nor arm, nor face, nor any other part
Belonging to a man. O, be some other name!
What's in a name? that which we call a rose
By any other name would smell as sweet;
So Romeo would, were he not Romeo call'd,
Retain that dear perfection which he owes
Without that title. Romeo, doff thy name,
And for that name which is no part of thee
Take all myself.

Romeo

I take thee at thy word:
Call me but love, and I'll be new baptized;
Henceforth I never will be Romeo.

Juliet

What man art thou that thus bescreen'd in night
So stumblest on my counsel?

Romeo

By a name
I know not how to tell thee who I am:
My name, dear saint, is hateful to myself,
Because it is an enemy to thee;
Had I it written, I would tear the word.

Juliet

My ears have not yet drunk a hundred words
Of that tongue's utterance, yet I know the sound:
Art thou not Romeo and a Montague?

Romeo

Neither, fair saint, if either thee dislike.

Juliet

How camest thou hither, tell me, and wherefore?
The orchard walls are high and hard to climb,
And the place death, considering who thou art,
If any of my kinsmen find thee here.

Romeo

With love's light wings did I o'er-perch these walls;
For stony limits cannot hold love out,
And what love can do that dares love attempt;
Therefore thy kinsmen are no let to me.

Juliet

If they do see thee, they will murder thee.

Romeo

Alack, there lies more peril in thine eye
Than twenty of their swords: look thou but sweet,
And I am proof against their enmity.

Juliet

I would not for the world they saw thee here.

Romeo

I have night's cloak to hide me from their sight;
And but thou love me, let them find me here:
My life were better ended by their hate,
Than death prorogued, wanting of thy love.

Juliet

By whose direction found'st thou out this place?

Romeo

By love, who first did prompt me to inquire;
He lent me counsel and I lent him eyes.
I am no pilot; yet, wert thou as far
As that vast shore wash'd with the farthest yonder

sea,

I would adventure for such merchandise.

Juliet

Thou know'st the mask of night is on my face,
Else would a maiden blush bepaint my cheek
For that which thou hast heard me speak to-night
Fain would I dwell on form, fain, fain deny
What I have spoke: but farewell compliment!
Dost thou love me? I know thou wilt say 'Ay,'
And I will take thy word: yet if thou swear'st,
Thou mayst prove false; at lovers' perjuries
Then say, Jove laughs. O gentle Romeo,
If thou dost love, pronounce it faithfully:
Or if thou think'st I am too quickly won,
I'll frown and be perverse an say thee nay,
So thou wilt woo; but else, not for the world.
In truth, fair Montague, I am too fond,
And therefore thou mayst think my 'havior light:
But trust me, gentleman, I'll prove more true
Than those that have more cunning to be strange.
I should have been more strange, I must confess,
But that thou overheard'st, ere I was ware,
My true love's passion: therefore pardon me,
And not impute this yielding to light love,
Which the dark night hath so discovered.

Romeo

Lady, by yonder blessed moon I swear
That tips with silver all these fruit-tree tops--

Juliet

O, swear not by the moon, the inconstant moon,
That monthly changes in her circled orb,
Lest that thy love prove likewise variable.

Romeo

What shall I swear by?

Juliet

Do not swear at all;
Or, if thou wilt, swear by thy gracious self,
Which is the god of my idolatry,
And I'll believe thee.

Romeo

If my heart's dear love--

Juliet

Well, do not swear: although I joy in thee,
I have no joy of this contract to-night:
It is too rash, too unadvised, too sudden;
Too like the lightning, which doth cease to be
Ere one can say 'It lightens.' Sweet, good night!
This bud of love, by summer's ripening breath,
May prove a beauteous flower when next we meet.
Good night, good night! as sweet repose and rest
Come to thy heart as that within my breast!

Romeo

O, wilt thou leave me so unsatisfied?

Juliet

What satisfaction canst thou have to-night?

Romeo

The exchange of thy love's faithful vow for mine.

Juliet

I gave thee mine before thou didst request it:
And yet I would it were to give again.

Romeo

Wouldst thou withdraw it? for what purpose, love?

Juliet

But to be frank, and give it thee again.
And yet I wish but for the thing I have:
My bounty is as boundless as the sea,
My love as deep; the more I give to thee,
The more I have, for both are infinite.

Nurse calls within

I hear some noise within; dear love, adieu!
Anon, good nurse! Sweet Montague, be true.
Stay but a little, I will come again.

Exit, above

Romeo

O blessed, blessed night! I am afeard.
Being in night, all this is but a dream,
Too flattering-sweet to be substantial.

Re-enter JULIET, above

Juliet

Three words, dear Romeo, and good night indeed.
If that thy bent of love be honourable,
Thy purpose marriage, send me word to-morrow,
By one that I'll procure to come to thee,
Where and what time thou wilt perform the rite;
And all my fortunes at thy foot I'll lay
And follow thee my lord throughout the world.

Nurse

Within Madam!

Juliet

I come, anon.--But if thou mean'st not well,
I do beseech thee--

Nurse

Within Madam!

Juliet

By and by, I come:--
To cease thy suit, and leave me to my grief:
To-morrow will I send.

Romeo

So thrive my soul--

Juliet

A thousand times good night!

Exit, above

Romeo

A thousand times the worse, to want thy light.
Love goes toward love, as schoolboys from
their books,
But love from love, toward school with heavy looks.

Retiring Re-enter JULIET, above

Juliet

Hist! Romeo, hist! O, for a falconer's voice,
To lure this tassel-gentle back again!
Bondage is hoarse, and may not speak aloud;
Else would I tear the cave where Echo lies,
And make her airy tongue more hoarse than mine,
With repetition of my Romeo's name.

Romeo

It is my soul that calls upon my name:
How silver-sweet sound lovers' tongues by night,
Like softest music to attending ears!

Juliet

Romeo!

Romeo

My dear?

Juliet

At what o'clock to-morrow
Shall I send to thee?

Romeo

At the hour of nine.

Juliet

I will not fail: 'tis twenty years till then.
I have forgot why I did call thee back.

Romeo

Let me stand here till thou remember it.

Juliet

I shall forget, to have thee still stand there,
Remembering how I love thy company.

Romeo

And I'll still stay, to have thee still forget,
Forgetting any other home but this.

Juliet

'Tis almost morning; I would have thee gone:
And yet no further than a wanton's bird;
Who lets it hop a little from her hand,
Like a poor prisoner in his twisted gyves,
And with a silk thread plucks it back again,
So loving-jealous of his liberty.

Romeo

I would I were thy bird.

Juliet

Sweet, so would I:
Yet I should kill thee with much cherishing.
Good night, good night! parting is such
sweet sorrow,
That I shall say good night till it be morrow.

Exit above

Romeo

Sleep dwell upon thine eyes, peace in thy breast!
Would I were sleep and peace, so sweet to rest!
Hence will I to my ghostly father's cell,
His help to crave, and my dear hap to tell.

Exit

SCENE III. Friar Laurence's cell.

Enter FRIAR Laurence, with a basket

Friar Laurence

The grey-eyed morn smiles on the frowning night,
Chequering the eastern clouds with streaks of light,
And flecked darkness like a drunkard reels
From forth day's path and Titan's fiery wheels:
Now, ere the sun advance his burning eye,
The day to cheer and night's dank dew to dry,
I must up-fill this osier cage of ours
With baleful weeds and precious-juiced flowers.
The earth that's nature's mother is her tomb;
What is her burying grave that is her womb,
And from her womb children of divers kind
We sucking on her natural bosom find,
Many for many virtues excellent,
None but for some and yet all different.
O, mickle is the powerful grace that lies
In herbs, plants, stones, and their true qualities:
For nought so vile that on the earth doth live
But to the earth some special good doth give,
Nor aught so good but strain'd from that fair use
Revolts from true birth, stumbling on abuse:
Virtue itself turns vice, being misapplied;
And vice sometimes by action dignified.
Within the infant rind of this small flower
Poison hath residence and medicine power:
For this, being smelt, with that part cheers each part;
Being tasted, slays all senses with the heart.
Two such opposed kings encamp them still
In man as well as herbs, grace and rude will;
And where the worser is predominant,
Full soon the canker death eats up that plant.

Enter ROMEO

Romeo

Good morrow, father.

Friar Laurence

Benedicite!
What early tongue so sweet saluteth me?
Young son, it argues a distemper'd head
So soon to bid good morrow to thy bed:
Care keeps his watch in every old man's eye,
And where care lodges, sleep will never lie;
But where unbruised youth with unstuff'd brain
Doth couch his limbs, there golden sleep doth reign:
Therefore thy earliness doth me assure
Thou art up-roused by some distemperature;
Or if not so, then here I hit it right,
Our Romeo hath not been in bed to-night.

Romeo

That last is true; the sweeter rest was mine.

Friar Laurence

God pardon sin! wast thou with Rosaline?

Romeo

With Rosaline, my ghostly father? no;
I have forgot that name, and that name's woe.

Friar Laurence

That's my good son: but where hast thou been, then?

Romeo

I'll tell thee, ere thou ask it me again.
I have been feasting with mine enemy,
Where on a sudden one hath wounded me,
That's by me wounded: both our remedies
Within thy help and holy physic lies:
I bear no hatred, blessed man, for, lo,
My intercession likewise steads my foe.

Friar Laurence

Be plain, good son, and homely in thy drift;
Riddling confession finds but riddling shrift.

Romeo

Then plainly know my heart's dear love is set
On the fair daughter of rich Capulet:
As mine on hers, so hers is set on mine;
And all combined, save what thou must combine
By holy marriage: when and where and how
We met, we woo'd and made exchange of vow,
I'll tell thee as we pass; but this I pray,
That thou consent to marry us to-day.

Friar Laurence

Holy Saint Francis, what a change is here!
Is Rosaline, whom thou didst love so dear,
So soon forsaken? young men's love then lies
Not truly in their hearts, but in their eyes.
Jesu Maria, what a deal of brine
Hath wash'd thy sallow cheeks for Rosaline!
How much salt water thrown away in waste,
To season love, that of it doth not taste!
The sun not yet thy sighs from heaven clears,
Thy old groans ring yet in my ancient ears;
Lo, here upon thy cheek the stain doth sit
Of an old tear that is not wash'd off yet:
If e'er thou wast thyself and these woes thine,
Thou and these woes were all for Rosaline:
And art thou changed? pronounce this sentence then,
Women may fall, when there's no strength in men.

Romeo

Thou chid'st me oft for loving Rosaline.

Friar Laurence

For doting, not for loving, pupil mine.

Romeo

And bad'st me bury love.

Friar Laurence

Not in a grave,
To lay one in, another out to have.

Romeo

I pray thee, chide not; she whom I love now
Doth grace for grace and love for love allow;
The other did not so.

Friar Laurence

O, she knew well
Thy love did read by rote and could not spell.
But come, young waverer, come, go with me,
In one respect I'll thy assistant be;
For this alliance may so happy prove,
To turn your households' rancour to pure love.

Romeo

O, let us hence; I stand on sudden haste.

Friar Laurence

Wisely and slow; they stumble that run fast.

Exeunt

SCENE IV. A street.

Enter BENVOLIO and MERCUTIO

Mercutio

Where the devil should this Romeo be?
Came he not home to-night?

Benvolio

Not to his father's; I spoke with his man.

Mercutio

Ah, that same pale hard-hearted wench, that Rosaline.
Torments him so, that he will sure run mad.

Benvolio

Tybalt, the kinsman of old Capulet,
Hath sent a letter to his father's house.

Mercutio

A challenge, on my life.

Benvolio

Romeo will answer it.

Mercutio

Any man that can write may answer a letter.

Benvolio

Nay, he will answer the letter's master, how he
dares, being dared.

Mercutio

Alas poor Romeo! he is already dead; stabbed with a
white wench's black eye; shot through the ear with a
love-song; the very pin of his heart cleft with the
blind bow-boy's butt-shaft: and is he a man to
encounter Tybalt?

Benvolio

Why, what is Tybalt?

Mercutio

More than prince of cats, I can tell you. O, he is
the courageous captain of compliments. He fights as
you sing prick-song, keeps time, distance, and
proportion; rests me his minim rest, one, two, and
the third in your bosom: the very butcher of a silk
button, a duellist, a duellist; a gentleman of the
very first house, of the first and second cause:
ah, the immortal passado! the punto reverso! the
hai!

Benvolio

The what?

Mercutio

The pox of such antic, lisping, affecting
fantasticoes; these new tuners of accents! 'By Jesu,
a very good blade! a very tall man! a very good
whore!' Why, is not this a lamentable thing,
grandsire, that we should be thus afflicted with
these strange flies, these fashion-mongers, these
perdona-mi's, who stand so much on the new form,
that they cannot at ease on the old bench? O, their
bones, their bones!

Enter Romeo

Benvolio

Here comes Romeo, here comes Romeo.

Mercutio

Without his roe, like a dried herring: flesh, flesh,
how art thou fishified! Now is he for the numbers
that Petrarch flowed in: Laura to his lady was but a
kitchen-wench; marry, she had a better love to
be-rhyme her; Dido a dowdy; Cleopatra a gipsy;
Helen and Hero hildings and harlots; Thisbe a grey
eye or so, but not to the purpose. Signior
Romeo, bon jour! there's a French salutation
to your French slop. You gave us the counterfeit
fairly last night.

Romeo

Good morrow to you both. What counterfeit did I give you?

Mercutio

The ship, sir, the slip; can you not conceive?

Romeo

Pardon, good Mercutio, my business was great; and in
such a case as mine a man may strain courtesy.

Mercutio

That's as much as to say, such a case as yours
constrains a man to bow in the hams.

Romeo

Meaning, to court'sy.

Mercutio

Thou hast most kindly hit it.

Romeo

A most courteous exposition.

Mercutio

Nay, I am the very pink of courtesy.

Romeo

Pink for flower.

Mercutio

Right.

Romeo

Why, then is my pump well flowered.

Mercutio

Well said: follow me this jest now till thou hast
worn out thy pump, that when the single sole of it
is worn, the jest may remain after the wearing sole singular.

Romeo

O single-soled jest, solely singular for the
singleness.

Mercutio

Come between us, good Benvolio; my wits faint.

Romeo

Switch and spurs, switch and spurs; or I'll cry a match.

Mercutio

Nay, if thy wits run the wild-goose chase, I have
done, for thou hast more of the wild-goose in one of
thy wits than, I am sure, I have in my whole five:
was I with you there for the goose?

Romeo

Thou wast never with me for any thing when thou wast
not there for the goose.

Mercutio

I will bite thee by the ear for that jest.

Romeo

Nay, good goose, bite not.

Mercutio

Thy wit is a very bitter sweeting; it is a most
sharp sauce.

Romeo

And is it not well served in to a sweet goose?

Mercutio

O here's a wit of cheveril, that stretches from an
inch narrow to an ell broad!

Romeo

I stretch it out for that word 'broad;' which added
to the goose, proves thee far and wide a broad goose.

Mercutio

Why, is not this better now than groaning for love?
now art thou sociable, now art thou Romeo; now art
thou what thou art, by art as well as by nature:
for this drivelling love is like a great natural,
that runs lolling up and down to hide his bauble in a hole.

Benvolio

Stop there, stop there.

Mercutio

Thou desirest me to stop in my tale against the hair.

Benvolio

Thou wouldst else have made thy tale large.

Mercutio

O, thou art deceived; I would have made it short:
for I was come to the whole depth of my tale; and
meant, indeed, to occupy the argument no longer.

Romeo

Here's goodly gear!

Enter Nurse and PETER

Mercutio

A sail, a sail!

Benvolio

Two, two; a shirt and a smock.

Nurse

Peter!

Peter

Anon!

Nurse

My fan, Peter.

Mercutio

Good Peter, to hide her face; for her fan's the
fairer face.

Nurse

God ye good morrow, gentlemen.

Mercutio

God ye good e'en, fair gentlewoman.

Nurse

Is it good e'en?

Mercutio

'Tis no less, I tell you, for the bawdy hand of the
dial is now upon the prick of noon.

Nurse

Out upon you! what a man are you!

Romeo

One, gentlewoman, that God hath made for himself to
mar.

Nurse

By my troth, it is well said; 'for himself to mar,'
quoth a'? Gentlemen, can any of you tell me where I
may find the young Romeo?

Romeo

I can tell you; but young Romeo will be older when
you have found him than he was when you sought him:
I am the youngest of that name, for fault of a worse.

Nurse

You say well.

Mercutio

Yea, is the worst well? very well took, i' faith;
wisely, wisely.

Nurse

if you be he, sir, I desire some confidence with
you.

Benvolio

She will indite him to some supper.

Mercutio

A bawd, a bawd, a bawd! so ho!

Romeo

What hast thou found?

Mercutio

No hare, sir; unless a hare, sir, in a lenten pie,
that is something stale and hoar ere it be spent.

Sings

An old hare hoar,
And an old hare hoar,
Is very good meat in lent
But a hare that is hoar
Is too much for a score,
When it hoars ere it be spent.
Romeo, will you come to your father's? we'll
to dinner, thither.

Romeo

I will follow you.

Mercutio

Farewell, ancient lady; farewell,

Singing

'lady, lady, lady.'

Exeunt MERCUTIO and BENVOLIO

Nurse

Marry, farewell! I pray you, sir, what saucy
merchant was this, that was so full of his ropery?

Romeo

A gentleman, nurse, that loves to hear himself talk,
and will speak more in a minute than he will stand
to in a month.

Nurse

An a' speak any thing against me, I'll take him
down, an a' were lustier than he is, and twenty such
Jacks; and if I cannot, I'll find those that shall.
Scurvy knave! I am none of his flirt-gills; I am
none of his skains-mates. And thou must stand by
too, and suffer every knave to use me at his pleasure?

Peter

I saw no man use you a pleasure; if I had, my weapon
should quickly have been out, I warrant you: I dare
draw as soon as another man, if I see occasion in a
good quarrel, and the law on my side.

Nurse

Now, afore God, I am so vexed, that every part about
me quivers. Scurvy knave! Pray you, sir, a word:
and as I told you, my young lady bade me inquire you
out; what she bade me say, I will keep to myself:
but first let me tell ye, if ye should lead her into
a fool's paradise, as they say, it were a very gross
kind of behaviour, as they say: for the gentlewoman
is young; and, therefore, if you should deal double
with her, truly it were an ill thing to be offered
to any gentlewoman, and very weak dealing.

Romeo

Nurse, commend me to thy lady and mistress. I
protest unto thee--

Nurse

Good heart, and, i' faith, I will tell her as much:
Lord, Lord, she will be a joyful woman.

Romeo

What wilt thou tell her, nurse? thou dost not mark me.

Nurse

I will tell her, sir, that you do protest; which, as
I take it, is a gentlemanlike offer.

Romeo

Bid her devise
Some means to come to shrift this afternoon;
And there she shall at Friar Laurence' cell
Be shrived and married. Here is for thy pains.

Nurse

No truly sir; not a penny.

Romeo

Go to; I say you shall.

Nurse

This afternoon, sir? well, she shall be there.

Romeo

And stay, good nurse, behind the abbey wall:
Within this hour my man shall be with thee
And bring thee cords made like a tackled stair;
Which to the high top-gallant of my joy
Must be my convoy in the secret night.
Farewell; be trusty, and I'll quit thy pains:
Farewell; commend me to thy mistress.

Nurse

Now God in heaven bless thee! Hark you, sir.

Romeo

What say'st thou, my dear nurse?

Nurse

Is your man secret? Did you ne'er hear say,
Two may keep counsel, putting one away?

Romeo

I warrant thee, my man's as true as steel.

Nurse

Well, sir; my mistress is the sweetest lady--Lord,
Lord! when 'twas a little prating thing:--O, there
is a nobleman in town, one Paris, that would fain
lay knife aboard; but she, good soul, had as lief
see a toad, a very toad, as see him. I anger her
sometimes and tell her that Paris is the properer
man; but, I'll warrant you, when I say so, she looks
as pale as any clout in the versal world. Doth not
rosemary and Romeo begin both with a letter?

Romeo

Ay, nurse; what of that? both with an R.

Nurse

Ah. mocker! that's the dog's name; R is for
the--No; I know it begins with some other
letter:--and she hath the prettiest sententious of
it, of you and rosemary, that it would do you good
to hear it.

Romeo

Commend me to thy lady.

Nurse

Ay, a thousand times.

Exit Romeo

Peter!

Peter

Anon!

Nurse

Peter, take my fan, and go before and apace.

Exeunt

SCENE V. Capulet's orchard.

Enter Juliet

Juliet

The clock struck nine when I did send the nurse;
In half an hour she promised to return.
Perchance she cannot meet him: that's not so.
O, she is lame! love's heralds should be thoughts,
Which ten times faster glide than the sun's beams,
Driving back shadows over louring hills:
Therefore do nimble-pinion'd doves draw love,
And therefore hath the wind-swift Cupid wings.
Now is the sun upon the highmost hill
Of this day's journey, and from nine till twelve
Is three long hours, yet she is not come.
Had she affections and warm youthful blood,
She would be as swift in motion as a ball;
My words would bandy her to my sweet love,
And his to me:
But old folks, many feign as they were dead;
Unwieldy, slow, heavy and pale as lead.
O God, she comes!

Enter Nurse and PETER

O honey nurse, what news?
Hast thou met with him? Send thy man away.

Nurse

Peter, stay at the gate.

Exit PETER

Juliet

Now, good sweet nurse,--O Lord, why look'st thou sad?
Though news be sad, yet tell them merrily;
If good, thou shamest the music of sweet news
By playing it to me with so sour a face.

Nurse

I am a-weary, give me leave awhile:
Fie, how my bones ache! what a jaunt have I had!

Juliet

I would thou hadst my bones, and I thy news:
Nay, come, I pray thee, speak; good, good nurse, speak.

Nurse

Jesu, what haste? can you not stay awhile?
Do you not see that I am out of breath?

Juliet

How art thou out of breath, when thou hast breath
To say to me that thou art out of breath?
The excuse that thou dost make in this delay
Is longer than the tale thou dost excuse.
Is thy news good, or bad? answer to that;
Say either, and I'll stay the circumstance:
Let me be satisfied, is't good or bad?

Nurse

Well, you have made a simple choice; you know not
how to choose a man: Romeo! no, not he; though his
face be better than any man's, yet his leg excels
all men's; and for a hand, and a foot, and a body,
though they be not to be talked on, yet they are
past compare: he is not the flower of courtesy,
but, I'll warrant him, as gentle as a lamb. Go thy
ways, wench; serve God. What, have you dined at home?

Juliet

No, no: but all this did I know before.
What says he of our marriage? what of that?

Nurse

Lord, how my head aches! what a head have I!
It beats as it would fall in twenty pieces.
My back o' t' other side,--O, my back, my back!
Beshrew your heart for sending me about,
To catch my death with jaunting up and down!

Juliet

I' faith, I am sorry that thou art not well.
Sweet, sweet, sweet nurse, tell me, what says my love?

Nurse

Your love says, like an honest gentleman, and a
courteous, and a kind, and a handsome, and, I
warrant, a virtuous,--Where is your mother?

Juliet

Where is my mother! why, she is within;
Where should she be? How oddly thou repliest!
'Your love says, like an honest gentleman,
Where is your mother?'

Nurse

O God's lady dear!
Are you so hot? marry, come up, I trow;
Is this the poultice for my aching bones?
Henceforward do your messages yourself.

Juliet

Here's such a coil! come, what says Romeo?

Nurse

Have you got leave to go to shrift to-day?

Juliet

I have.

Nurse

Then hie you hence to Friar Laurence' cell;
There stays a husband to make you a wife:
Now comes the wanton blood up in your cheeks,
They'll be in scarlet straight at any news.
Hie you to church; I must another way,
To fetch a ladder, by the which your love
Must climb a bird's nest soon when it is dark:
I am the drudge and toil in your delight,
But you shall bear the burden soon at night.
Go; I'll to dinner: hie you to the cell.

Juliet

Hie to high fortune! Honest nurse, farewell.

Exeunt

SCENE VI. Friar Laurence's cell.

Enter Friar Laurence and Romeo

Friar Laurence

So smile the heavens upon this holy act,
That after hours with sorrow chide us not!

Romeo

Amen, amen! but come what sorrow can,
It cannot countervail the exchange of joy
That one short minute gives me in her sight:
Do thou but close our hands with holy words,
Then love-devouring death do what he dare;
It is enough I may but call her mine.

Friar Laurence

These violent delights have violent ends
And in their triumph die, like fire and powder,
Which as they kiss consume: the sweetest honey
Is loathsome in his own deliciousness
And in the taste confounds the appetite:
Therefore love moderately; long love doth so;
Too swift arrives as tardy as too slow.

Enter Juliet

Here comes the lady: O, so light a foot
Will ne'er wear out the everlasting flint:
A lover may bestride the gossamer
That idles in the wanton summer air,
And yet not fall; so light is vanity.

Juliet

Good even to my ghostly confessor.

Friar Laurence

Romeo shall thank thee, daughter, for us both.

Juliet

As much to him, else is his thanks too much.

Romeo

Ah, Juliet, if the measure of thy joy
Be heap'd like mine and that thy skill be more
To blazon it, then sweeten with thy breath
This neighbour air, and let rich music's tongue
Unfold the imagined happiness that both
Receive in either by this dear encounter.

Juliet

Conceit, more rich in matter than in words,
Brags of his substance, not of ornament:
They are but beggars that can count their worth;
But my true love is grown to such excess
I cannot sum up sum of half my wealth.

Friar Laurence

Come, come with me, and we will make short work;
For, by your leaves, you shall not stay alone
Till holy church incorporate two in one.

Exeunt

ACT III

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SCENE I. A public place.

Enter Mercutio, Benvolio, Page, and Servants

Benvolio

I pray thee, good Mercutio, let's retire:
The day is hot, the Capulets abroad,
And, if we meet, we shall not scape a brawl;
For now, these hot days, is the mad blood stirring.

Mercutio

Thou art like one of those fellows that when he
enters the confines of a tavern claps me his sword
upon the table and says 'God send me no need of
thee!' and by the operation of the second cup draws
it on the drawer, when indeed there is no need.

Benvolio

Am I like such a fellow?

Mercutio

Come, come, thou art as hot a Jack in thy mood as
any in Italy, and as soon moved to be moody, and as
soon moody to be moved.

Benvolio

And what to?

Mercutio

Nay, an there were two such, we should have none
shortly, for one would kill the other. Thou! why,
thou wilt quarrel with a man that hath a hair more,
or a hair less, in his beard, than thou hast: thou
wilt quarrel with a man for cracking nuts, having no
other reason but because thou hast hazel eyes: what
eye but such an eye would spy out such a quarrel?
Thy head is as full of quarrels as an egg is full of
meat, and yet thy head hath been beaten as addle as
an egg for quarrelling: thou hast quarrelled with a
man for coughing in the street, because he hath
wakened thy dog that hath lain asleep in the sun:
didst thou not fall out with a tailor for wearing
his new doublet before Easter? with another, for
tying his new shoes with old riband? and yet thou
wilt tutor me from quarrelling!

Benvolio

An I were so apt to quarrel as thou art, any man
should buy the fee-simple of my life for an hour and a quarter.

Mercutio

The fee-simple! O simple!

Benvolio

By my head, here come the Capulets.

Mercutio

By my heel, I care not.

Enter TYBALT and others

Tybalt

Follow me close, for I will speak to them.
Gentlemen, good den: a word with one of you.

Mercutio

And but one word with one of us? couple it with
something; make it a word and a blow.

Tybalt

You shall find me apt enough to that, sir, an you
will give me occasion.

Mercutio

Could you not take some occasion without giving?

Tybalt

Mercutio, thou consort'st with Romeo,--

Mercutio

Consort! what, dost thou make us minstrels? an
thou make minstrels of us, look to hear nothing but
discords: here's my fiddlestick; here's that shall
make you dance. 'Zounds, consort!

Benvolio

We talk here in the public haunt of men:
Either withdraw unto some private place,
And reason coldly of your grievances,
Or else depart; here all eyes gaze on us.

Mercutio

Men's eyes were made to look, and let them gaze;
I will not budge for no man's pleasure, I.

Enter ROMEO

Tybalt

Well, peace be with you, sir: here comes my man.

Mercutio

But I'll be hanged, sir, if he wear your livery:
Marry, go before to field, he'll be your follower;
Your worship in that sense may call him 'man.'

Tybalt

Romeo, the hate I bear thee can afford
No better term than this,--thou art a villain.

Romeo

Tybalt, the reason that I have to love thee
Doth much excuse the appertaining rage
To such a greeting: villain am I none;
Therefore farewell; I see thou know'st me not.

Tybalt

Boy, this shall not excuse the injuries
That thou hast done me; therefore turn and draw.

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:
And so, good Capulet,--which name I tender
As dearly as my own,--be satisfied.

Mercutio

O calm, dishonourable, vile submission!
Alla stoccata carries it away.

Draws

Tybalt, you rat-catcher, will you walk?

Tybalt

What wouldst thou have with me?

Mercutio

Good king of cats, nothing but one of your nine
lives; that I mean to make bold withal, and as you
shall use me hereafter, drybeat the rest of the
eight. Will you pluck your sword out of his pitcher
by the ears? make haste, lest mine be about your
ears ere it be out.

Tybalt

I am for you.

Drawing

Romeo

Gentle Mercutio, put thy rapier up.

Mercutio

Come, sir, your passado.

They fight

Romeo

Draw, Benvolio; beat down their weapons.
Gentlemen, for shame, forbear this outrage!
Tybalt, Mercutio, the prince expressly hath
Forbidden bandying in Verona streets:
Hold, Tybalt! good Mercutio!

TYBALT under ROMEO's arm stabs MERCUTIO, and flies with his followers

Mercutio

I am hurt.
A plague o' both your houses! I am sped.
Is he gone, and hath nothing?

Benvolio

What, art thou hurt?

Mercutio

Ay, ay, a scratch, a scratch; marry, 'tis enough.
Where is my page? Go, villain, fetch a surgeon.

Exit Page

Romeo

Courage, man; the hurt cannot be much.

Mercutio

No, 'tis not so deep as a well, nor so wide as a
church-door; but 'tis enough,'twill serve: ask for
me to-morrow, and you shall find me a grave man. I
am peppered, I warrant, for this world. A plague o'
both your houses! 'Zounds, a dog, a rat, a mouse, a
cat, to scratch a man to death! a braggart, a
rogue, a villain, that fights by the book of
arithmetic! Why the devil came you between us? I
was hurt under your arm.

Romeo

I thought all for the best.

Mercutio

Help me into some house, Benvolio,
Or I shall faint. A plague o' both your houses!
They have made worms' meat of me: I have it,
And soundly too: your houses!

Exeunt MERCUTIO and BENVOLIO

Romeo

This gentleman, the prince's near ally,
My very friend, hath got his mortal hurt
In my behalf; my reputation stain'd
With Tybalt's slander,--Tybalt, that an hour
Hath been my kinsman! O sweet Juliet,
Thy beauty hath made me effeminate
And in my temper soften'd valour's steel!

Re-enter BENVOLIO

Benvolio

O Romeo, Romeo, brave Mercutio's dead!
That gallant spirit hath aspired the clouds,
Which too untimely here did scorn the earth.

Romeo

This day's black fate on more days doth depend;
This but begins the woe, others must end.

Benvolio

Here comes the furious Tybalt back again.

Romeo

Alive, in triumph! and Mercutio slain!
Away to heaven, respective lenity,
And fire-eyed fury be my conduct now!

Re-enter TYBALT

Now, Tybalt, take the villain back again,
That late thou gavest me; for Mercutio's soul
Is but a little way above our heads,
Staying for thine to keep him company:
Either thou, or I, or both, must go with him.

Tybalt

Thou, wretched boy, that didst consort him here,
Shalt with him hence.

Romeo

This shall determine that.

They fight; TYBALT falls

Benvolio

Romeo, away, be gone!
The citizens are up, and Tybalt slain.
Stand not amazed: the prince will doom thee death,
If thou art taken: hence, be gone, away!

Romeo

O, I am fortune's fool!

Benvolio

Why dost thou stay?

Exit ROMEO Enter Citizens, &c

First citizen

Which way ran he that kill'd Mercutio?
Tybalt, that murderer, which way ran he?

Benvolio

There lies that Tybalt.

First citizen

Up, sir, go with me;
I charge thee in the princes name, obey.

Enter Prince, attended; MONTAGUE, CAPULET, their Wives, and others

Prince

Where are the vile beginners of this fray?

Benvolio

O noble prince, I can discover all
The unlucky manage of this fatal brawl:
There lies the man, slain by young Romeo,
That slew thy kinsman, brave Mercutio.

Lady capulet

Tybalt, my cousin! O my brother's child!
O prince! O cousin! husband! O, the blood is spilt
O my dear kinsman! Prince, as thou art true,
For blood of ours, shed blood of Montague.
O cousin, cousin!

Prince

Benvolio, who began this bloody fray?

Benvolio

Tybalt, here slain, whom Romeo's hand did slay;
Romeo that spoke him fair, bade him bethink
How nice the quarrel was, and urged withal
Your high displeasure: all this uttered
With gentle breath, calm look, knees humbly bow'd,
Could not take truce with the unruly spleen
Of Tybalt deaf to peace, but that he tilts
With piercing steel at bold Mercutio's breast,
Who all as hot, turns deadly point to point,
And, with a martial scorn, with one hand beats
Cold death aside, and with the other sends
It back to Tybalt, whose dexterity,
Retorts it: Romeo he cries aloud,
'Hold, friends! friends, part!' and, swifter than
his tongue,
His agile arm beats down their fatal points,
And 'twixt them rushes; underneath whose arm
An envious thrust from Tybalt hit the life
Of stout Mercutio, and then Tybalt fled;
But by and by comes back to Romeo,
Who had but newly entertain'd revenge,
And to 't they go like lightning, for, ere I
Could draw to part them, was stout Tybalt slain.
And, as he fell, did Romeo turn and fly.
This is the truth, or let Benvolio die.

Lady capulet

He is a kinsman to the Montague;
Affection makes him false; he speaks not true:
Some twenty of them fought in this black strife,
And all those twenty could but kill one life.
I beg for justice, which thou, prince, must give;
Romeo slew Tybalt, Romeo must not live.

Prince

Romeo slew him, he slew Mercutio;
Who now the price of his dear blood doth owe?

Montague

Not Romeo, prince, he was Mercutio's friend;
His fault concludes but what the law should end,
The life of Tybalt.

Prince

And for that offence
Immediately we do exile him hence:
I have an interest in your hate's proceeding,
My blood for your rude brawls doth lie a-bleeding;
But I'll amerce you with so strong a fine
That you shall all repent the loss of mine:
I will be deaf to pleading and excuses;
Nor tears nor prayers shall purchase out abuses:
Therefore use none: let Romeo hence in haste,
Else, when he's found, that hour is his last.
Bear hence this body and attend our will:
Mercy but murders, pardoning those that kill.

Exeunt

SCENE II. Capulet's orchard.

Enter Juliet

Juliet

Gallop apace, you fiery-footed steeds,
Towards Phoebus' lodging: such a wagoner
As Phaethon would whip you to the west,
And bring in cloudy night immediately.
Spread thy close curtain, love-performing night,
That runaway's eyes may wink and Romeo
Leap to these arms, untalk'd of and unseen.
Lovers can see to do their amorous rites
By their own beauties; or, if love be blind,
It best agrees with night. Come, civil night,
Thou sober-suited matron, all in black,
And learn me how to lose a winning match,
Play'd for a pair of stainless maidenhoods:
Hood my unmann'd blood, bating in my cheeks,
With thy black mantle; till strange love, grown bold,
Think true love acted simple modesty.
Come, night; come, Romeo; come, thou day in night;
For thou wilt lie upon the wings of night
Whiter than new snow on a raven's back.
Come, gentle night, come, loving, black-brow'd night,
Give me my Romeo; and, when he shall die,
Take him and cut him out in little stars,
And he will make the face of heaven so fine
That all the world will be in love with night
And pay no worship to the garish sun.
O, I have bought the mansion of a love,
But not possess'd it, and, though I am sold,
Not yet enjoy'd: so tedious is this day
As is the night before some festival
To an impatient child that hath new robes
And may not wear them. O, here comes my nurse,
And she brings news; and every tongue that speaks
But Romeo's name speaks heavenly eloquence.

Enter Nurse, with cords

Now, nurse, what news? What hast thou there? the cords
That Romeo bid thee fetch?

Nurse

Ay, ay, the cords.

Throws them down

Juliet

Ay me! what news? why dost thou wring thy hands?

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!

Juliet

Can heaven be so envious?

Nurse

Romeo can,
Though heaven cannot: O Romeo, Romeo!
Who ever would have thought it? Romeo!

Juliet

What devil art thou, that dost torment me thus?
This torture should be roar'd in dismal hell.
Hath Romeo slain himself? say thou but 'I,'
And that bare vowel 'I' shall poison more
Than the death-darting eye of cockatrice:
I am not I, if there be such an I;
Or those eyes shut, that make thee answer 'I.'
If he be slain, say 'I'; or if not, no:
Brief sounds determine of my weal or woe.

Nurse

I saw the wound, I saw it with mine eyes,--
God save the mark!--here on his manly breast:
A piteous corse, a bloody piteous corse;
Pale, pale as ashes, all bedaub'd in blood,
All in gore-blood; I swounded at the sight.

Juliet

O, break, my heart! poor bankrupt, break at once!
To prison, eyes, ne'er look on liberty!
Vile earth, to earth resign; end motion here;
And thou and Romeo press one heavy bier!

Nurse

O Tybalt, Tybalt, the best friend I had!
O courteous Tybalt! honest gentleman!
That ever I should live to see thee dead!

Juliet

What storm is this that blows so contrary?
Is Romeo slaughter'd, and is Tybalt dead?
My dear-loved cousin, and my dearer lord?
Then, dreadful trumpet, sound the general doom!
For who is living, if those two are gone?

Nurse

Tybalt is gone, and Romeo banished;
Romeo that kill'd him, he is banished.

Juliet

O God! did Romeo's hand shed Tybalt's blood?

Nurse

It did, it did; alas the day, it did!

Juliet

O serpent heart, hid with a flowering face!
Did ever dragon keep so fair a cave?
Beautiful tyrant! fiend angelical!
Dove-feather'd raven! wolvish-ravening lamb!
Despised substance of divinest show!
Just opposite to what thou justly seem'st,
A damned saint, an honourable villain!
O nature, what hadst thou to do in hell,
When thou didst bower the spirit of a fiend
In moral paradise of such sweet flesh?
Was ever book containing such vile matter
So fairly bound? O that deceit should dwell
In such a gorgeous palace!

Nurse

There's no trust,
No faith, no honesty in men; all perjured,
All forsworn, all naught, all dissemblers.
Ah, where's my man? give me some aqua vitae:
These griefs, these woes, these sorrows make me old.
Shame come to Romeo!

Juliet

Blister'd be thy tongue
For such a wish! he was not born to shame:
Upon his brow shame is ashamed to sit;
For 'tis a throne where honour may be crown'd
Sole monarch of the universal earth.
O, what a beast was I to chide at him!

Nurse

Will you speak well of him that kill'd your cousin?

Juliet

Shall I speak ill of him that is my husband?
Ah, poor my lord, what tongue shall smooth thy name,
When I, thy three-hours wife, have mangled it?
But, wherefore, villain, didst thou kill my cousin?
That villain cousin would have kill'd my husband:
Back, foolish tears, back to your native spring;
Your tributary drops belong to woe,
Which you, mistaking, offer up to joy.
My husband lives, that Tybalt would have slain;
And Tybalt's dead, that would have slain my husband:
All this is comfort; wherefore weep I then?
Some word there was, worser than Tybalt's death,
That murder'd me: I would forget it fain;
But, O, it presses to my memory,
Like damned guilty deeds to sinners' minds:
'Tybalt is dead, and Romeo--banished;'
That 'banished,' that one word 'banished,'
Hath slain ten thousand Tybalts. Tybalt's death
Was woe enough, if it had ended there:
Or, if sour woe delights in fellowship
And needly will be rank'd with other griefs,
Why follow'd not, when she said 'Tybalt's dead,'
Thy father, or thy mother, nay, or both,
Which modern lamentations might have moved?
But with a rear-ward following Tybalt's death,
'Romeo is banished,' to speak that word,
Is father, mother, Tybalt, Romeo, Juliet,
All slain, all dead. 'Romeo is banished!'
There is no end, no limit, measure, bound,
In that word's death; no words can that woe sound.
Where is my father, and my mother, nurse?

Nurse

Weeping and wailing over Tybalt's corse:
Will you go to them? I will bring you thither.

Juliet

Wash they his wounds with tears: mine shall be spent,
When theirs are dry, for Romeo's banishment.
Take up those cords: poor ropes, you are beguiled,
Both you and I; for Romeo is exiled:
He made you for a highway to my bed;
But I, a maid, die maiden-widowed.
Come, cords, come, nurse; I'll to my wedding-bed;
And death, not Romeo, take my maidenhead!

Nurse

Hie to your chamber: I'll find Romeo
To comfort you: I wot well where he is.
Hark ye, your Romeo will be here at night:
I'll to him; he is hid at Laurence' cell.

Juliet

O, find him! give this ring to my true knight,
And bid him come to take his last farewell.

Exeunt

SCENE III. Friar Laurence's cell.

Enter FRIAR Laurence

Friar Laurence

Romeo, come forth; come forth, thou fearful man:
Affliction is enamour'd of thy parts,
And thou art wedded to calamity.

Enter Romeo

Romeo

Father, what news? what is the prince's doom?
What sorrow craves acquaintance at my hand,
That I yet know not?

Friar Laurence

Too familiar
Is my dear son with such sour company:
I bring thee tidings of the prince's doom.

Romeo

What less than dooms-day is the prince's doom?

Friar Laurence

A gentler judgment vanish'd from his lips,
Not body's death, but body's banishment.

Romeo

Ha, banishment! be merciful, say 'death;'
For exile hath more terror in his look,
Much more than death: do not say 'banishment.'

Friar Laurence

Hence from Verona art thou banished:
Be patient, for the world is broad and wide.

Romeo

There is no world without Verona walls,
But purgatory, torture, hell itself.
Hence-banished is banish'd from the world,
And world's exile is death: then banished,
Is death mis-term'd: calling death banishment,
Thou cutt'st my head off with a golden axe,
And smilest upon the stroke that murders me.

Friar Laurence

O deadly sin! O rude unthankfulness!
Thy fault our law calls death; but the kind prince,
Taking thy part, hath rush'd aside the law,
And turn'd that black word death to banishment:
This is dear mercy, and thou seest it not.

Romeo

'Tis torture, and not mercy: heaven is here,
Where Juliet lives; and every cat and dog
And little mouse, every unworthy thing,
Live here in heaven and may look on her;
But Romeo may not: more validity,
More honourable state, more courtship lives
In carrion-flies than Romeo: they may seize
On the white wonder of dear Juliet's hand
And steal immortal blessing from her lips,
Who even in pure and vestal modesty,
Still blush, as thinking their own kisses sin;
But Romeo may not; he is banished:
Flies may do this, but I from this must fly:
They are free men, but I am banished.
And say'st thou yet that exile is not death?
Hadst thou no poison mix'd, no sharp-ground knife,
No sudden mean of death, though ne'er so mean,
But 'banished' to kill me?--'banished'?
O friar, the damned use that word in hell;
Howlings attend it: how hast thou the heart,
Being a divine, a ghostly confessor,
A sin-absolver, and my friend profess'd,
To mangle me with that word 'banished'?

Friar Laurence

Thou fond mad man, hear me but speak a word.

Romeo

O, thou wilt speak again of banishment.

Friar Laurence

I'll give thee armour to keep off that word:
Adversity's sweet milk, philosophy,
To comfort thee, though thou art banished.

Romeo

Yet 'banished'? Hang up philosophy!
Unless philosophy can make a Juliet,
Displant a town, reverse a prince's doom,
It helps not, it prevails not: talk no more.

Friar Laurence

O, then I see that madmen have no ears.

Romeo

How should they, when that wise men have no eyes?

Friar Laurence

Let me dispute with thee of thy estate.

Romeo

Thou canst not speak of that thou dost not feel:
Wert thou as young as I, Juliet thy love,
An hour but married, Tybalt murdered,
Doting like me and like me banished,
Then mightst thou speak, then mightst thou tear thy hair,
And fall upon the ground, as I do now,
Taking the measure of an unmade grave.

Knocking within

Friar Laurence

Arise; one knocks; good Romeo, hide thyself.

Romeo

Not I; unless the breath of heartsick groans,
Mist-like, infold me from the search of eyes.

Knocking

Friar Laurence

Hark, how they knock! Who's there? Romeo, arise;
Thou wilt be taken. Stay awhile! Stand up;

Knocking

Run to my study. By and by! God's will,
What simpleness is this! I come, I come!

Knocking

Who knocks so hard? whence come you? what's your will?

Nurse

Within Let me come in, and you shall know
my errand;
I come from Lady Juliet.

Friar Laurence

Welcome, then.

Enter Nurse

Nurse

O holy friar, O, tell me, holy friar,
Where is my lady's lord, where's Romeo?

Friar Laurence

There on the ground, with his own tears made drunk.

Nurse

O, he is even in my mistress' case,
Just in her case! O woful sympathy!
Piteous predicament! Even so lies she,
Blubbering and weeping, weeping and blubbering.
Stand up, stand up; stand, and you be a man:
For Juliet's sake, for her sake, rise and stand;
Why should you fall into so deep an O?

Romeo

Nurse!

Nurse

Ah sir! ah sir! Well, death's the end of all.

Romeo

Spakest thou of Juliet? how is it with her?
Doth she not think me an old murderer,
Now I have stain'd the childhood of our joy
With blood removed but little from her own?
Where is she? and how doth she? and what says
My conceal'd lady to our cancell'd love?

Nurse

O, she says nothing, sir, but weeps and weeps;
And now falls on her bed; and then starts up,
And Tybalt calls; and then on Romeo cries,
And then down falls again.

Romeo

As if that name,
Shot from the deadly level of a gun,
Did murder her; as that name's cursed hand
Murder'd her kinsman. O, tell me, friar, tell me,
In what vile part of this anatomy
Doth my name lodge? tell me, that I may sack
The hateful mansion.

Drawing his sword

Friar Laurence

Hold thy desperate hand:
Art thou a man? thy form cries out thou art:
Thy tears are womanish; thy wild acts denote
The unreasonable fury of a beast:
Unseemly woman in a seeming man!
Or ill-beseeming beast in seeming both!
Thou hast amazed me: by my holy order,
I thought thy disposition better temper'd.
Hast thou slain Tybalt? wilt thou slay thyself?
And slay thy lady too that lives in thee,
By doing damned hate upon thyself?
Why rail'st thou on thy birth, the heaven, and earth?
Since birth, and heaven, and earth, all three do meet
In thee at once; which thou at once wouldst lose.
Fie, fie, thou shamest thy shape, thy love, thy wit;
Which, like a usurer, abound'st in all,
And usest none in that true use indeed
Which should bedeck thy shape, thy love, thy wit:
Thy noble shape is but a form of wax,
Digressing from the valour of a man;
Thy dear love sworn but hollow perjury,
Killing that love which thou hast vow'd to cherish;
Thy wit, that ornament to shape and love,
Misshapen in the conduct of them both,
Like powder in a skitless soldier's flask,
Is set afire by thine own ignorance,
And thou dismember'd with thine own defence.
What, rouse thee, man! thy Juliet is alive,
For whose dear sake thou wast but lately dead;
There art thou happy: Tybalt would kill thee,
But thou slew'st Tybalt; there are thou happy too:
The law that threaten'd death becomes thy friend
And turns it to exile; there art thou happy:
A pack of blessings lights up upon thy back;
Happiness courts thee in her best array;
But, like a misbehaved and sullen wench,
Thou pout'st upon thy fortune and thy love:
Take heed, take heed, for such die miserable.
Go, get thee to thy love, as was decreed,
Ascend her chamber, hence and comfort her:
But look thou stay not till the watch be set,
For then thou canst not pass to Mantua;
Where thou shalt live, till we can find a time
To blaze your marriage, reconcile your friends,
Beg pardon of the prince, and call thee back
With twenty hundred thousand times more joy
Than thou went'st forth in lamentation.
Go before, nurse: commend me to thy lady;
And bid her hasten all the house to bed,
Which heavy sorrow makes them apt unto:
Romeo is coming.

Nurse

O Lord, I could have stay'd here all the night
To hear good counsel: O, what learning is!
My lord, I'll tell my lady you will come.

Romeo

Do so, and bid my sweet prepare to chide.

Nurse

Here, sir, a ring she bid me give you, sir:
Hie you, make haste, for it grows very late.

Exit

Romeo

How well my comfort is revived by this!

Friar Laurence

Go hence; good night; and here stands all your state:
Either be gone before the watch be set,
Or by the break of day disguised from hence:
Sojourn in Mantua; I'll find out your man,
And he shall signify from time to time
Every good hap to you that chances here:
Give me thy hand; 'tis late: farewell; good night.

Romeo

But that a joy past joy calls out on me,
It were a grief, so brief to part with thee: Farewell.

Exeunt

SCENE IV. A room in Capulet's house.

Enter Capulet, Lady Capulet, and Paris

Capulet

Things have fall'n out, sir, so unluckily,
That we have had no time to move our daughter:
Look you, she loved her kinsman Tybalt dearly,
And so did I:--Well, we were born to die.
'Tis very late, she'll not come down to-night:
I promise you, but for your company,
I would have been a-bed an hour ago.

Paris

These times of woe afford no time to woo.
Madam, good night: commend me to your daughter.

Lady Capulet

I will, and know her mind early to-morrow;
To-night she is mew'd up to her heaviness.

Capulet

Sir Paris, I will make a desperate tender
Of my child's love: I think she will be ruled
In all respects by me; nay, more, I doubt it not.
Wife, go you to her ere you go to bed;
Acquaint her here of my son Paris' love;
And bid her, mark you me, on Wednesday next--
But, soft! what day is this?

Paris

Monday, my lord,

Capulet

Monday! ha, ha! Well, Wednesday is too soon,
O' Thursday let it be: o' Thursday, tell her,
She shall be married to this noble earl.
Will you be ready? do you like this haste?
We'll keep no great ado,--a friend or two;
For, hark you, Tybalt being slain so late,
It may be thought we held him carelessly,
Being our kinsman, if we revel much:
Therefore we'll have some half a dozen friends,
And there an end. But what say you to Thursday?

Paris

My lord, I would that Thursday were to-morrow.

Capulet

Well get you gone: o' Thursday be it, then.
Go you to Juliet ere you go to bed,
Prepare her, wife, against this wedding-day.
Farewell, my lord. Light to my chamber, ho!
Afore me! it is so very very late,
That we may call it early by and by.
Good night.

Exeunt

SCENE V. Capulet's orchard.

Enter Romeo and Juliet above, at the window

Juliet

Wilt thou be gone? it is not yet near day:
It was the nightingale, and not the lark,
That pierced the fearful hollow of thine ear;
Nightly she sings on yon pomegranate-tree:
Believe me, love, it was the nightingale.

Romeo

It was the lark, the herald of the morn,
No nightingale: look, love, what envious streaks
Do lace the severing clouds in yonder east:
Night's candles are burnt out, and jocund day
Stands tiptoe on the misty mountain tops.
I must be gone and live, or stay and die.

Juliet

Yon light is not day-light, I know it, I:
It is some meteor that the sun exhales,
To be to thee this night a torch-bearer,
And light thee on thy way to Mantua:
Therefore stay yet; thou need'st not to be gone.

Romeo

Let me be ta'en, let me be put to death;
I am content, so thou wilt have it so.
I'll say yon grey is not the morning's eye,
'Tis but the pale reflex of Cynthia's brow;
Nor that is not the lark, whose notes do beat
The vaulty heaven so high above our heads:
I have more care to stay than will to go:
Come, death, and welcome! Juliet wills it so.
How is't, my soul? let's talk; it is not day.

Juliet

It is, it is: hie hence, be gone, away!
It is the lark that sings so out of tune,
Straining harsh discords and unpleasing sharps.
Some say the lark makes sweet division;
This doth not so, for she divideth us:
Some say the lark and loathed toad change eyes,
O, now I would they had changed voices too!
Since arm from arm that voice doth us affray,
Hunting thee hence with hunt's-up to the day,
O, now be gone; more light and light it grows.

Romeo

More light and light; more dark and dark our woes!

Enter Nurse, to the chamber

Nurse

Madam!

Juliet

Nurse?

Nurse

Your lady mother is coming to your chamber:
The day is broke; be wary, look about.

Exit

Juliet

Then, window, let day in, and let life out.

Romeo

Farewell, farewell! one kiss, and I'll descend.

He goeth down

Juliet

Art thou gone so? love, lord, ay, husband, friend!
I must hear from thee every day in the hour,
For in a minute there are many days:
O, by this count I shall be much in years
Ere I again behold my Romeo!

Romeo

Farewell!
I will omit no opportunity
That may convey my greetings, love, to thee.

Juliet

O think'st thou we shall ever meet again?

Romeo

I doubt it not; and all these woes shall serve
For sweet discourses in our time to come.

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.

Romeo

And trust me, love, in my eye so do you:
Dry sorrow drinks our blood. Adieu, adieu!

Exit

Juliet

O fortune, fortune! all men call thee fickle:
If thou art fickle, what dost thou with him.
That is renown'd for faith? Be fickle, fortune;
For then, I hope, thou wilt not keep him long,
But send him back.

Lady Capulet

Within Ho, daughter! are you up?

Juliet

Who is't that calls? is it my lady mother?
Is she not down so late, or up so early?
What unaccustom'd cause procures her hither?

Enter LADY Capulet

Lady Capulet

Why, how now, Juliet!

Juliet

Madam, I am not well.

Lady Capulet

Evermore weeping for your cousin's death?
What, wilt thou wash him from his grave with tears?
An if thou couldst, thou couldst not make him live;
Therefore, have done: some grief shows much of love;
But much of grief shows still some want of wit.

Juliet

Yet let me weep for such a feeling loss.

Lady Capulet

So shall you feel the loss, but not the friend
Which you weep for.

Juliet

Feeling so the loss,
Cannot choose but ever weep the friend.

Lady Capulet

Well, girl, thou weep'st not so much for his death,
As that the villain lives which slaughter'd him.

Juliet

What villain madam?

Lady Capulet

That same villain, Romeo.

Juliet

Aside Villain and he be many miles asunder.--
God Pardon him! I do, with all my heart;
And yet no man like he doth grieve my heart.

Lady Capulet

That is, because the traitor murderer lives.

Juliet

Ay, madam, from the reach of these my hands:
Would none but I might venge my cousin's death!

Lady Capulet

We will have vengeance for it, fear thou not:
Then weep no more. 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:
And then, I hope, thou wilt be satisfied.

Juliet

Indeed, I never shall be satisfied
With Romeo, till I behold him--dead--
Is my poor heart for a kinsman vex'd.
Madam, if you could find out but a man
To bear a poison, I would temper it;
That Romeo should, upon receipt thereof,
Soon sleep in quiet. O, how my heart abhors
To hear him named, and cannot come to him.
To wreak the love I bore my cousin
Upon his body that slaughter'd him!

Lady Capulet

Find thou the means, and I'll find such a man.
But now I'll tell thee joyful tidings, girl.

Juliet

And joy comes well in such a needy time:
What are they, I beseech your ladyship?

Lady Capulet

Well, well, thou hast a careful father, child;
One who, to put thee from thy heaviness,
Hath sorted out a sudden day of joy,
That thou expect'st not nor I look'd not for.

Juliet

Madam, in happy time, what day is that?

Lady Capulet

Marry, my child, early next Thursday morn,
The gallant, young and noble gentleman,
The County Paris, at Saint Peter's Church,
Shall happily make thee there a joyful bride.

Juliet

Now, by Saint Peter's Church and Peter too,
He shall not make me there a joyful bride.
I wonder at this haste; that I must wed
Ere he, that should be husband, comes to woo.
I pray you, tell my lord and father, madam,
I will not marry yet; and, when I do, I swear,
It shall be Romeo, whom you know I hate,
Rather than Paris. These are news indeed!

Lady Capulet

Here comes your father; tell him so yourself,
And see how he will take it at your hands.

Enter Capulet and Nurse

Capulet

When the sun sets, the air doth drizzle dew;
But for the sunset of my brother's son
It rains downright.
How now! a conduit, girl? what, still in tears?
Evermore showering? In one little body
Thou counterfeit'st a bark, a sea, a wind;
For still thy eyes, which I may call the sea,
Do ebb and flow with tears; the bark thy body is,
Sailing in this salt flood; the winds, thy sighs;
Who, raging with thy tears, and they with them,
Without a sudden calm, will overset
Thy tempest-tossed body. How now, wife!
Have you deliver'd to her our decree?

Lady Capulet

Ay, sir; but she will none, she gives you thanks.
I would the fool were married to her grave!

Capulet

Soft! take me with you, take me with you, wife.
How! will she none? doth she not give us thanks?
Is she not proud? doth she not count her blest,
Unworthy as she is, that we have wrought
So worthy a gentleman to be her bridegroom?

Juliet

Not proud, you have; but thankful, that you have:
Proud can I never be of what I hate;
But thankful even for hate, that is meant love.

Capulet

How now, how now, chop-logic! What is this?
'Proud,' and 'I thank you,' and 'I thank you not;'
And yet 'not proud,' mistress minion, you,
Thank me no thankings, nor, proud me no prouds,
But fettle your fine joints 'gainst Thursday next,
To go with Paris to Saint Peter's Church,
Or I will drag thee on a hurdle thither.
Out, you green-sickness carrion! out, you baggage!
You tallow-face!

Lady Capulet

Fie, fie! what, are you mad?

Juliet

Good father, I beseech you on my knees,
Hear me with patience but to speak a word.

Capulet

Hang thee, young baggage! disobedient wretch!
I tell thee what: get thee to church o' Thursday,
Or never after look me in the face:
Speak not, reply not, do not answer me;
My fingers itch. Wife, we scarce thought us blest
That God had lent us but this only child;
But now I see this one is one too much,
And that we have a curse in having her:
Out on her, hilding!

Nurse

God in heaven bless her!
You are to blame, my lord, to rate her so.

Capulet

And why, my lady wisdom? hold your tongue,
Good prudence; smatter with your gossips, go.

Nurse

I speak no treason.

Capulet

O, God ye god-den.

Nurse

May not one speak?

Capulet

Peace, you mumbling fool!
Utter your gravity o'er a gossip's bowl;
For here we need it not.

Lady Capulet

You are too hot.

Capulet

God's bread! it makes me mad:
Day, night, hour, tide, time, work, play,
Alone, in company, still my care hath been
To have her match'd: and having now provided
A gentleman of noble parentage,
Of fair demesnes, youthful, and nobly train'd,
Stuff'd, as they say, with honourable parts,
Proportion'd as one's thought would wish a man;
And then to have a wretched puling fool,
A whining mammet, in her fortune's tender,
To answer 'I'll not wed; I cannot love,
I am too young; I pray you, pardon me.'
But, as you will not wed, I'll pardon you:
Graze where you will you shall not house with me:
Look to't, think on't, I do not use to jest.
Thursday is near; lay hand on heart, advise:
An you be mine, I'll give you to my friend;
And you be not, hang, beg, starve, die in
the streets,
For, by my soul, I'll ne'er acknowledge thee,
Nor what is mine shall never do thee good:
Trust to't, bethink you; I'll not be forsworn.

Exit

Juliet

Is there no pity sitting in the clouds,
That sees into the bottom of my grief?
O, sweet my mother, cast me not away!
Delay this marriage for a month, a week;
Or, if you do not, make the bridal bed
In that dim monument where Tybalt lies.

Lady Capulet

Talk not to me, for I'll not speak a word:
Do as thou wilt, for I have done with thee.

Exit

Juliet

O God!--O nurse, how shall this be prevented?
My husband is on earth, my faith in heaven;
How shall that faith return again to earth,
Unless that husband send it me from heaven
By leaving earth? comfort me, counsel me.
Alack, alack, that heaven should practise stratagems
Upon so soft a subject as myself!
What say'st thou? hast thou not a word of joy?
Some comfort, nurse.

Nurse

Faith, here it is.
Romeo is banish'd; and all the world to nothing,
That he dares ne'er come back to challenge you;
Or, if he do, it needs must be by stealth.
Then, since the case so stands as now it doth,
I think it best you married with the county.
O, he's a lovely gentleman!
Romeo's a dishclout to him: an eagle, madam,
Hath not so green, so quick, so fair an eye
As Paris hath. Beshrew my very heart,
I think you are happy in this second match,
For it excels your first: or if it did not,
Your first is dead; or 'twere as good he were,
As living here and you no use of him.

Juliet

Speakest thou from thy heart?

Nurse

And from my soul too;
Or else beshrew them both.

Juliet

Amen!

Nurse

What?

Juliet

Well, thou hast comforted me marvellous much.
Go in: and tell my lady I am gone,
Having displeased my father, to Laurence' cell,
To make confession and to be absolved.

Nurse

Marry, I will; and this is wisely done.

Exit

Juliet

Ancient damnation! O most wicked fiend!
Is it more sin to wish me thus forsworn,
Or to dispraise my lord with that same tongue
Which she hath praised him with above compare
So many thousand times? Go, counsellor;
Thou and my bosom henceforth shall be twain.
I'll to the friar, to know his remedy:
If all else fail, myself have power to die.

Exit

ACT IV

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SCENE I. Friar Laurence's cell.

Enter Friar Laurence and Paris

Friar Laurence

On Thursday, sir? the time is very short.

Paris

My father Capulet will have it so;
And I am nothing slow to slack his haste.

Friar Laurence

You say you do not know the lady's mind:
Uneven is the course, I like it not.

Paris

Immoderately she weeps for Tybalt's death,
And therefore have I little talk'd of love;
For Venus smiles not in a house of tears.
Now, sir, her father counts it dangerous
That she doth give her sorrow so much sway,
And in his wisdom hastes our marriage,
To stop the inundation of her tears;
Which, too much minded by herself alone,
May be put from her by society:
Now do you know the reason of this haste.

Friar Laurence

Aside I would I knew not why it should be slow'd.
Look, sir, here comes the lady towards my cell.

Enter Juliet

Paris

Happily met, my lady and my wife!

Juliet

That may be, sir, when I may be a wife.

Paris

That may be must be, love, on Thursday next.

Juliet

What must be shall be.

Friar Laurence

That's a certain text.

Paris

Come you to make confession to this father?

Juliet

To answer that, I should confess to you.

Paris

Do not deny to him that you love me.

Juliet

I will confess to you that I love him.

Paris

So will ye, I am sure, that you love me.

Juliet

If I do so, it will be of more price,
Being spoke behind your back, than to your face.

Paris

Poor soul, thy face is much abused with tears.

Juliet

The tears have got small victory by that;
For it was bad enough before their spite.

Paris

Thou wrong'st it, more than tears, with that report.

Juliet

That is no slander, sir, which is a truth;
And what I spake, I spake it to my face.

Paris

Thy face is mine, and thou hast slander'd it.

Juliet

It may be so, for it is not mine own.
Are you at leisure, holy father, now;
Or shall I come to you at evening mass?

Friar Laurence

My leisure serves me, pensive daughter, now.
My lord, we must entreat the time alone.

Paris

God shield I should disturb devotion!
Juliet, on Thursday early will I rouse ye:
Till then, adieu; and keep this holy kiss.

Exit

Juliet

O shut the door! and when thou hast done so,
Come weep with me; past hope, past cure, past help!

Friar Laurence

Ah, Juliet, I already know thy grief;
It strains me past the compass of my wits:
I hear thou must, and nothing may prorogue it,
On Thursday next be married to this county.

Juliet

Tell me not, friar, that thou hear'st of this,
Unless thou tell me how I may prevent it:
If, in thy wisdom, thou canst give no help,
Do thou but call my resolution wise,
And with this knife I'll help it presently.
God join'd my heart and Romeo's, thou our hands;
And ere this hand, by thee to Romeo seal'd,
Shall be the label to another deed,
Or my true heart with treacherous revolt
Turn to another, this shall slay them both:
Therefore, out of thy long-experienced time,
Give me some present counsel, or, behold,
'Twixt my extremes and me this bloody knife
Shall play the umpire, arbitrating that
Which the commission of thy years and art
Could to no issue of true honour bring.
Be not so long to speak; I long to die,
If what thou speak'st speak not of remedy.

Friar Laurence

Hold, daughter: I do spy a kind of hope,
Which craves as desperate an execution.
As that is desperate which we would prevent.
If, rather than to marry County Paris,
Thou hast the strength of will to slay thyself,
Then is it likely thou wilt undertake
A thing like death to chide away this shame,
That copest with death himself to scape from it:
And, if thou darest, I'll give thee remedy.

Juliet

O, bid me leap, rather than marry Paris,
From off the battlements of yonder tower;
Or walk in thievish ways; or bid me lurk
Where serpents are; chain me with roaring bears;
Or shut me nightly in a charnel-house,
O'er-cover'd quite with dead men's rattling bones,
With reeky shanks and yellow chapless skulls;
Or bid me go into a new-made grave
And hide me with a dead man in his shroud;
Things that, to hear them told, have made me tremble;
And I will do it without fear or doubt,
To live an unstain'd wife to my sweet love.

Friar Laurence

Hold, then; go home, be merry, give consent
To marry Paris: Wednesday is to-morrow:
To-morrow night look that thou lie alone;
Let not thy nurse lie with thee in thy chamber:
Take thou this vial, being then in bed,
And this distilled liquor drink thou off;
When presently through all thy veins shall run
A cold and drowsy humour, for no pulse
Shall keep his native progress, but surcease:
No warmth, no breath, shall testify thou livest;
The roses in thy lips and cheeks shall fade
To paly ashes, thy eyes' windows fall,
Like death, when he shuts up the day of life;
Each part, deprived of supple government,
Shall, stiff and stark and cold, appear like death:
And in this borrow'd likeness of shrunk death
Thou shalt continue two and forty hours,
And then awake as from a pleasant sleep.
Now, when the bridegroom in the morning comes
To rouse thee from thy bed, there art thou dead:
Then, as the manner of our country is,
In thy best robes uncover'd on the bier
Thou shalt be borne to that same ancient vault
Where all the kindred of the Capulets lie.
In the mean time, against thou shalt awake,
Shall Romeo by my letters know our drift,
And hither shall he come: and he and I
Will watch thy waking, and that very night
Shall Romeo bear thee hence to Mantua.
And this shall free thee from this present shame;
If no inconstant toy, nor womanish fear,
Abate thy valour in the acting it.

Juliet

Give me, give me! O, tell not me of fear!

Friar Laurence

Hold; get you gone, be strong and prosperous
In this resolve: I'll send a friar with speed
To Mantua, with my letters to thy lord.

Juliet

Love give me strength! and strength shall help afford.
Farewell, dear father!

Exeunt

SCENE II. Hall in Capulet's house.

Enter Capulet, Lady Capulet, Nurse, and two Servingmen

Capulet

So many guests invite as here are writ.

Exit First Servant

Sirrah, go hire me twenty cunning cooks.

Second servant

You shall have none ill, sir; for I'll try if they
can lick their fingers.

Capulet

How canst thou try them so?

Second servant

Marry, sir, 'tis an ill cook that cannot lick his
own fingers: therefore he that cannot lick his
fingers goes not with me.

Capulet

Go, be gone.

Exit Second Servant

We shall be much unfurnished for this time.
What, is my daughter gone to Friar Laurence?

Nurse

Ay, forsooth.

Capulet

Well, he may chance to do some good on her:
A peevish self-will'd harlotry it is.

Nurse

See where she comes from shrift with merry look.

Enter Juliet

Capulet

How now, my headstrong! where have you been gadding?

Juliet

Where I have learn'd me to repent the sin
Of disobedient opposition
To you and your behests, and am enjoin'd
By holy Laurence to fall prostrate here,
And beg your pardon: pardon, I beseech you!
Henceforward I am ever ruled by you.

Capulet

Send for the county; go tell him of this:
I'll have this knot knit up to-morrow morning.

Juliet

I met the youthful lord at Laurence' cell;
And gave him what becomed love I might,
Not step o'er the bounds of modesty.

Capulet

Why, I am glad on't; this is well: stand up:
This is as't should be. Let me see the county;
Ay, marry, go, I say, and fetch him hither.
Now, afore God! this reverend holy friar,
Our whole city is much bound to him.

Juliet

Nurse, will you go with me into my closet,
To help me sort such needful ornaments
As you think fit to furnish me to-morrow?

Lady Capulet

No, not till Thursday; there is time enough.

Capulet

Go, nurse, go with her: we'll to church to-morrow.

Exeunt Juliet and Nurse

Lady Capulet

We shall be short in our provision:
'Tis now near night.

Capulet

Tush, I will stir about,
And all things shall be well, I warrant thee, wife:
Go thou to Juliet, help to deck up her;
I'll not to bed to-night; let me alone;
I'll play the housewife for this once. What, ho!
They are all forth. Well, I will walk myself
To County Paris, to prepare him up
Against to-morrow: my heart is wondrous light,
Since this same wayward girl is so reclaim'd.

Exeunt

SCENE III. Juliet's chamber.

Enter Juliet and Nurse

Juliet

Ay, those attires are best: but, gentle nurse,
I pray thee, leave me to myself to-night,
For I have need of many orisons
To move the heavens to smile upon my state,
Which, well thou know'st, is cross, and full of sin.

Enter Lady Capulet

Lady Capulet

What, are you busy, ho? need you my help?

Juliet

No, madam; we have cull'd such necessaries
As are behoveful for our state to-morrow:
So please you, let me now be left alone,
And let the nurse this night sit up with you;
For, I am sure, you have your hands full all,
In this so sudden business.

Lady Capulet

Good night:
Get thee to bed, and rest; for thou hast need.

Exeunt Lady Capulet and Nurse

Juliet

Farewell! God knows when we shall meet again.
I have a faint cold fear thrills through my veins,
That almost freezes up the heat of life:
I'll call them back again to comfort me:
Nurse! What should she do here?
My dismal scene I needs must act alone.
Come, vial.
What if this mixture do not work at all?
Shall I be married then to-morrow morning?
No, no: this shall forbid it: lie thou there.

Laying down her dagger

What if it be a poison, which the friar
Subtly hath minister'd to have me dead,
Lest in this marriage he should be dishonour'd,
Because he married me before to Romeo?
I fear it is: and yet, methinks, it should not,
For he hath still been tried a holy man.
How if, when I am laid into the tomb,
I wake before the time that Romeo
Come to redeem me? there's a fearful point!
Shall I not, then, be stifled in the vault,
To whose foul mouth no healthsome air breathes in,
And there die strangled ere my Romeo comes?
Or, if I live, is it not very like,
The horrible conceit of death and night,
Together with the terror of the place,--
As in a vault, an ancient receptacle,
Where, for these many hundred years, the bones
Of all my buried ancestors are packed:
Where bloody Tybalt, yet but green in earth,
Lies festering in his shroud; where, as they say,
At some hours in the night spirits resort;--
Alack, alack, is it not like that I,
So early waking, what with loathsome smells,
And shrieks like mandrakes' torn out of the earth,
That living mortals, hearing them, run mad:--
O, if I wake, shall I not be distraught,
Environed with all these hideous fears?
And madly play with my forefather's joints?
And pluck the mangled Tybalt from his shroud?
And, in this rage, with some great kinsman's bone,
As with a club, dash out my desperate brains?
O, look! methinks I see my cousin's ghost
Seeking out Romeo, that did spit his body
Upon a rapier's point: stay, Tybalt, stay!
Romeo, I come! this do I drink to thee.

She falls upon her bed, within the curtains

SCENE IV. Hall in Capulet's house.

Enter LADY CAPULET and Nurse

Lady Capulet

Hold, take these keys, and fetch more spices, nurse.

Nurse

They call for dates and quinces in the pastry.

Enter CAPULET

Capulet

Come, stir, stir, stir! the second cock hath crow'd,
The curfew-bell hath rung, 'tis three o'clock:
Look to the baked meats, good Angelica:
Spare not for the cost.

Nurse

Go, you cot-quean, go,
Get you to bed; faith, You'll be sick to-morrow
For this night's watching.

Capulet

No, not a whit: what! I have watch'd ere now
All night for lesser cause, and ne'er been sick.

Lady Capulet

Ay, you have been a mouse-hunt in your time;
But I will watch you from such watching now.

Exeunt LADY CAPULET and Nurse

Capulet

A jealous hood, a jealous hood!

Enter three or four Servingmen, with spits, logs, and baskets

Now, fellow,
What's there?

First servant

Things for the cook, sir; but I know not what.

Capulet

Make haste, make haste.

Exit First Servant

Sirrah, fetch drier logs:
Call Peter, he will show thee where they are.

Second servant

I have a head, sir, that will find out logs,
And never trouble Peter for the matter.

Exit

Capulet

Mass, and well said; a merry whoreson, ha!
Thou shalt be logger-head. Good faith, 'tis day:
The county will be here with music straight,
For so he said he would: I hear him near.

Music within

Nurse! Wife! What, ho! What, nurse, I say!

Re-enter Nurse

Go waken Juliet, go and trim her up;
I'll go and chat with Paris: hie, make haste,
Make haste; the bridegroom he is come already:
Make haste, I say.

Exeunt

SCENE V. Juliet's chamber.

Enter Nurse

Nurse

Mistress! what, mistress! Juliet! fast, I warrant her, she:
Why, lamb! why, lady! fie, you slug-a-bed!
Why, love, I say! madam! sweet-heart! why, bride!
What, not a word? you take your pennyworths now;
Sleep for a week; for the next night, I warrant,
The County Paris hath set up his rest,
That you shall rest but little. God forgive me,
Marry, and amen, how sound is she asleep!
I must needs wake her. Madam, madam, madam!
Ay, let the county take you in your bed;
He'll fright you up, i' faith. Will it not be?

Undraws the curtains

What, dress'd! and in your clothes! and down again!
I must needs wake you; Lady! lady! lady!
Alas, alas! Help, help! my lady's dead!
O, well-a-day, that ever I was born!
Some aqua vitae, ho! My lord! my lady!

Enter LADY CAPULET

Lady capulet

What noise is here?

Nurse

O lamentable day!

Lady capulet

What is the matter?

Nurse

Look, look! O heavy day!

Lady capulet

O me, O me! My child, my only life,
Revive, look up, or I will die with thee!
Help, help! Call help.

Enter CAPULET

Capulet

For shame, bring Juliet forth; her lord is come.

Nurse

She's dead, deceased, she's dead; alack the day!

Lady capulet

Alack the day, she's dead, she's dead, she's dead!

Capulet

Ha! let me see her: out, alas! she's cold:
Her blood is settled, and her joints are stiff;
Life and these lips have long been separated:
Death lies on her like an untimely frost
Upon the sweetest flower of all the field.

Nurse

O lamentable day!

Lady capulet

O woful time!

Capulet

Death, that hath ta'en her hence to make me wail,
Ties up my tongue, and will not let me speak.

Enter FRIAR LAURENCE and PARIS, with Musicians

Friar laurence

Come, is the bride ready to go to church?

Capulet

Ready to go, but never to return.
O son! the night before thy wedding-day
Hath Death lain with thy wife. There she lies,
Flower as she was, deflowered by him.
Death is my son-in-law, Death is my heir;
My daughter he hath wedded: I will die,
And leave him all; life, living, all is Death's.

Paris

Have I thought long to see this morning's face,
And doth it give me such a sight as this?

Lady capulet

Accursed, unhappy, wretched, hateful day!
Most miserable hour that e'er time saw
In lasting labour of his pilgrimage!
But one, poor one, one poor and loving child,
But one thing to rejoice and solace in,
And cruel death hath catch'd it from my sight!

Nurse

O woe! O woful, woful, woful day!
Most lamentable day, most woful day,
That ever, ever, I did yet behold!
O day! O day! O day! O hateful day!
Never was seen so black a day as this:
O woful day, O woful day!

Paris

Beguiled, divorced, wronged, spited, slain!
Most detestable death, by thee beguil'd,
By cruel cruel thee quite overthrown!
O love! O life! not life, but love in death!

Capulet

Despised, distressed, hated, martyr'd, kill'd!
Uncomfortable time, why camest thou now
To murder, murder our solemnity?
O child! O child! my soul, and not my child!
Dead art thou! Alack! my child is dead;
And with my child my joys are buried.

Friar laurence

Peace, ho, for shame! confusion's cure lives not
In these confusions. Heaven and yourself
Had part in this fair maid; now heaven hath all,
And all the better is it for the maid:
Your part in her you could not keep from death,
But heaven keeps his part in eternal life.
The most you sought was her promotion;
For 'twas your heaven she should be advanced:
And weep ye now, seeing she is advanced
Above the clouds, as high as heaven itself?
O, in this love, you love your child so ill,
That you run mad, seeing that she is well:
She's not well married that lives married long;
But she's best married that dies married young.
Dry up your tears, and stick your rosemary
On this fair corse; and, as the custom is,
In all her best array bear her to church:
For though fond nature bids us an lament,
Yet nature's tears are reason's merriment.

Capulet

All things that we ordained festival,
Turn from their office to black funeral;
Our instruments to melancholy bells,
Our wedding cheer to a sad burial feast,
Our solemn hymns to sullen dirges change,
Our bridal flowers serve for a buried corse,
And all things change them to the contrary.

Friar laurence

Sir, go you in; and, madam, go with him;
And go, Sir Paris; every one prepare
To follow this fair corse unto her grave:
The heavens do lour upon you for some ill;
Move them no more by crossing their high will.

Exeunt CAPULET, LADY CAPULET, PARIS, and FRIAR LAURENCE

First musician

Faith, we may put up our pipes, and be gone.

Nurse

Honest goodfellows, ah, put up, put up;
For, well you know, this is a pitiful case.

Exit

First musician

Ay, by my troth, the case may be amended.

Enter PETER

Peter

Musicians, O, musicians, 'Heart's ease, Heart's
ease:' O, an you will have me live, play 'Heart's ease.'

First musician

Why 'Heart's ease?'

Peter

O, musicians, because my heart itself plays 'My
heart is full of woe:' O, play me some merry dump,
to comfort me.

First musician

Not a dump we; 'tis no time to play now.

Peter

You will not, then?

First musician

No.

Peter

I will then give it you soundly.

First musician

What will you give us?

Peter

No money, on my faith, but the gleek;
I will give you the minstrel.

First musician

Then I will give you the serving-creature.

Peter

Then will I lay the serving-creature's dagger on
your pate. I will carry no crotchets: I'll re you,
I'll fa you; do you note me?

First musician

An you re us and fa us, you note us.

Second musician

Pray you, put up your dagger, and put out your wit.

Peter

Then have at you with my wit! I will dry-beat you
with an iron wit, and put up my iron dagger. Answer
me like men:
'When griping grief the heart doth wound,
And doleful dumps the mind oppress,
Then music with her silver sound'--
why 'silver sound'? why 'music with her silver
sound'? What say you, Simon Catling?

Musician

Marry, sir, because silver hath a sweet sound.

Peter

Pretty! What say you, Hugh Rebeck?

Second musician

I say 'silver sound,' because musicians sound for silver.

Peter

Pretty too! What say you, James Soundpost?

Third musician

Faith, I know not what to say.

Peter

O, I cry you mercy; you are the singer: I will say
for you. It is 'music with her silver sound,'
because musicians have no gold for sounding:
'Then music with her silver sound
With speedy help doth lend redress.'

Exit

First musician

What a pestilent knave is this same!

Second musician

Hang him, Jack! Come, we'll in here; tarry for the
mourners, and stay dinner.

Exeunt

ACT V

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SCENE I. Mantua. A street.

Enter ROMEO

Romeo

If I may trust the flattering truth of sleep,
My dreams presage some joyful news at hand:
My bosom's lord sits lightly in his throne;
And all this day an unaccustom'd spirit
Lifts me above the ground with cheerful thoughts.
I dreamt my lady came and found me dead--
Strange dream, that gives a dead man leave
to think!--
And breathed such life with kisses in my lips,
That I revived, and was an emperor.
Ah me! how sweet is love itself possess'd,
When but love's shadows are so rich in joy!

Enter BALTHASAR, booted

News from Verona!--How now, Balthasar!
Dost thou not bring me letters from the friar?
How doth my lady? Is my father well?
How fares my Juliet? that I ask again;
For nothing can be ill, if she be well.

Balthasar

Then she is well, and nothing can be ill:
Her body sleeps in Capel's monument,
And her immortal part with angels lives.
I saw her laid low in her kindred's vault,
And presently took post to tell it you:
O, pardon me for bringing these ill news,
Since you did leave it for my office, sir.

Romeo

Is it even so? then I defy you, stars!
Thou know'st my lodging: get me ink and paper,
And hire post-horses; I will hence to-night.

Balthasar

I do beseech you, sir, have patience:
Your looks are pale and wild, and do import
Some misadventure.

Romeo

Tush, thou art deceived:
Leave me, and do the thing I bid thee do.
Hast thou no letters to me from the friar?

Balthasar

No, my good lord.

Romeo

No matter: get thee gone,
And hire those horses; I'll be with thee straight.

Exit BALTHASAR

Well, Juliet, I will lie with thee to-night.
Let's see for means: O mischief, thou art swift
To enter in the thoughts of desperate men!
I do remember an apothecary,--
And hereabouts he dwells,--which late I noted
In tatter'd weeds, with overwhelming brows,
Culling of simples; meagre were his looks,
Sharp misery had worn him to the bones:
And in his needy shop a tortoise hung,
An alligator stuff'd, and other skins
Of ill-shaped fishes; and about his shelves
A beggarly account of empty boxes,
Green earthen pots, bladders and musty seeds,
Remnants of packthread and old cakes of roses,
Were thinly scatter'd, to make up a show.
Noting this penury, to myself I said
'An if a man did need a poison now,
Whose sale is present death in Mantua,
Here lives a caitiff wretch would sell it him.'
O, this same thought did but forerun my need;
And this same needy man must sell it me.
As I remember, this should be the house.
Being holiday, the beggar's shop is shut.
What, ho! apothecary!

Enter Apothecary

Apothecary

Who calls so loud?

Romeo

Come hither, man. I see that thou art poor:
Hold, there is forty ducats: let me have
A dram of poison, such soon-speeding gear
As will disperse itself through all the veins
That the life-weary taker may fall dead
And that the trunk may be discharged of breath
As violently as hasty powder fired
Doth hurry from the fatal cannon's womb.

Apothecary

Such mortal drugs I have; but Mantua's law
Is death to any he that utters them.

Romeo

Art thou so bare and full of wretchedness,
And fear'st to die? famine is in thy cheeks,
Need and oppression starveth in thine eyes,
Contempt and beggary hangs upon thy back;
The world is not thy friend nor the world's law;
The world affords no law to make thee rich;
Then be not poor, but break it, and take this.

Apothecary

My poverty, but not my will, consents.

Romeo

I pay thy poverty, and not thy will.

Apothecary

Put this in any liquid thing you will,
And drink it off; and, if you had the strength
Of twenty men, it would dispatch you straight.

Romeo

There is thy gold, worse poison to men's souls,
Doing more murders in this loathsome world,
Than these poor compounds that thou mayst not sell.
I sell thee poison; thou hast sold me none.
Farewell: buy food, and get thyself in flesh.
Come, cordial and not poison, go with me
To Juliet's grave; for there must I use thee.

Exeunt

SCENE II. Friar Laurence's cell.

Enter FRIAR JOHN

Friar John

Holy Franciscan friar! brother, ho!

Enter FRIAR Laurence

Friar Laurence

This same should be the voice of Friar John.
Welcome from Mantua: what says Romeo?
Or, if his mind be writ, give me his letter.

Friar John

Going to find a bare-foot brother out
One of our order, to associate me,
Here in this city visiting the sick,
And finding him, the searchers of the town,
Suspecting that we both were in a house
Where the infectious pestilence did reign,
Seal'd up the doors, and would not let us forth;
So that my speed to Mantua there was stay'd.

Friar Laurence

Who bare my letter, then, to Romeo?

Friar John

I could not send it,--here it is again,--
Nor get a messenger to bring it thee,
So fearful were they of infection.

Friar Laurence

Unhappy fortune! by my brotherhood,
The letter was not nice but full of charge
Of dear import, and the neglecting it
May do much danger. Friar John, go hence;
Get me an iron crow, and bring it straight
Unto my cell.

Friar John

Brother, I'll go and bring it thee.

Exit

Friar Laurence

Now must I to the monument alone;
Within three hours will fair Juliet wake:
She will beshrew me much that Romeo
Hath had no notice of these accidents;
But I will write again to Mantua,
And keep her at my cell till Romeo come;
Poor living corse, closed in a dead man's tomb!

Exit

SCENE III. A churchyard; in it a tomb belonging to the Capulets.

Enter Paris, and his Page bearing flowers and a torch

Paris

Give me thy torch, boy: hence, and stand aloof:
Yet put it out, for I would not be seen.
Under yond yew-trees lay thee all along,
Holding thine ear close to the hollow ground;
So shall no foot upon the churchyard tread,
Being loose, unfirm, with digging up of graves,
But thou shalt hear it: whistle then to me,
As signal that thou hear'st something approach.
Give me those flowers. Do as I bid thee, go.

Page

Aside I am almost afraid to stand alone
Here in the churchyard; yet I will adventure.

Retires

Paris

Sweet flower, with flowers thy bridal bed I strew,--
O woe! thy canopy is dust and stones;--
Which with sweet water nightly I will dew,
Or, wanting that, with tears distill'd by moans:
The obsequies that I for thee will keep
Nightly shall be to strew thy grave and weep.

The Page whistles

The boy gives warning something doth approach.
What cursed foot wanders this way to-night,
To cross my obsequies and true love's rite?
What with a torch! muffle me, night, awhile.

Retires Enter Romeo and Balthasar, with a torch, mattock, &c

Romeo

Give me that mattock and the wrenching iron.
Hold, take this letter; early in the morning
See thou deliver it to my lord and father.
Give me the light: upon thy life, I charge thee,
Whate'er thou hear'st or seest, stand all aloof,
And do not interrupt me in my course.
Why I descend into this bed of death,
Is partly to behold my lady's face;
But chiefly to take thence from her dead finger
A precious ring, a ring that I must use
In dear employment: therefore hence, be gone:
But if thou, jealous, dost return to pry
In what I further shall intend to do,
By heaven, I will tear thee joint by joint
And strew this hungry churchyard with thy limbs:
The time and my intents are savage-wild,
More fierce and more inexorable far
Than empty tigers or the roaring sea.

Balthasar

I will be gone, sir, and not trouble you.

Romeo

So shalt thou show me friendship. Take thou that:
Live, and be prosperous: and farewell, good fellow.

Balthasar

Aside For all this same, I'll hide me hereabout:
His looks I fear, and his intents I doubt.

Retires

Romeo

Thou detestable maw, thou womb of death,
Gorged with the dearest morsel of the earth,
Thus I enforce thy rotten jaws to open,
And, in despite, I'll cram thee with more food!

Opens the tomb

Paris

This is that banish'd haughty Montague,
That murder'd my love's cousin, with which grief,
It is supposed, the fair creature died;
And here is come to do some villanous shame
To the dead bodies: I will apprehend him.

Comes forward

Stop thy unhallow'd toil, vile Montague!
Can vengeance be pursued further than death?
Condemned villain, I do apprehend thee:
Obey, and go with me; for thou must die.

Romeo

I must indeed; and therefore came I hither.
Good gentle youth, tempt not a desperate man;
Fly hence, and leave me: think upon these gone;
Let them affright thee. I beseech thee, youth,
Put not another sin upon my head,
By urging me to fury: O, be gone!
By heaven, I love thee better than myself;
For I come hither arm'd against myself:
Stay not, be gone; live, and hereafter say,
A madman's mercy bade thee run away.

Paris

I do defy thy conjurations,
And apprehend thee for a felon here.

Romeo

Wilt thou provoke me? then have at thee, boy!

They fight

Page

O Lord, they fight! I will go call the watch.

Exit

Paris

O, I am slain!

Falls

If thou be merciful,
Open the tomb, lay me with Juliet.

Dies

Romeo

In faith, I will. Let me peruse this face.
Mercutio's kinsman, noble County Paris!
What said my man, when my betossed soul
Did not attend him as we rode? I think
He told me Paris should have married Juliet:
Said he not so? or did I dream it so?
Or am I mad, hearing him talk of Juliet,
To think it was so? O, give me thy hand,
One writ with me in sour misfortune's book!
I'll bury thee in a triumphant grave;
A grave? O no! a lantern, slaughter'd youth,
For here lies Juliet, and her beauty makes
This vault a feasting presence full of light.
Death, lie thou there, by a dead man interr'd.

Laying Paris in the tomb

How oft when men are at the point of death
Have they been merry! which their keepers call
A lightning before death: O, how may I
Call this a lightning? O my love! my wife!
Death, that hath suck'd the honey of thy breath,
Hath had no power yet upon thy beauty:
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.
Tybalt, liest thou there in thy bloody sheet?
O, what more favour can I do to thee,
Than with that hand that cut thy youth in twain
To sunder his that was thine enemy?
Forgive me, cousin! Ah, dear Juliet,
Why art thou yet so fair? shall I believe
That unsubstantial death is amorous,
And that the lean abhorred monster keeps
Thee here in dark to be his paramour?
For fear of that, I still will stay with thee;
And never from this palace of dim night
Depart again: here, here will I remain
With worms that are thy chamber-maids; O, here
Will I set up my everlasting rest,
And shake the yoke of inauspicious stars
From this world-wearied flesh. Eyes, look your last!
Arms, take your last embrace! and, lips, O you
The doors of breath, seal with a righteous kiss
A dateless bargain to engrossing death!
Come, bitter conduct, come, unsavoury guide!
Thou desperate pilot, now at once run on
The dashing rocks thy sea-sick weary bark!
Here's to my love!

Drinks

O true apothecary!
Thy drugs are quick. Thus with a kiss I die.

Dies; Enter, at the other end of the churchyard, Friar Laurence, with a lantern, crow, and spade

Friar Laurence

Saint Francis be my speed! how oft to-night
Have my old feet stumbled at graves! Who's there?

Balthasar

Here's one, a friend, and one that knows you well.

Friar Laurence

Bliss be upon you! Tell me, good my friend,
What torch is yond, that vainly lends his light
To grubs and eyeless skulls? as I discern,
It burneth in the Capel's monument.

Balthasar

It doth so, holy sir; and there's my master,
One that you love.

Friar Laurence

Who is it?

Balthasar

Romeo.

Friar Laurence

How long hath he been there?

Balthasar

Full half an hour.

Friar Laurence

Go with me to the vault.

Balthasar

I dare not, sir
My master knows not but I am gone hence;
And fearfully did menace me with death,
If I did stay to look on his intents.

Friar Laurence

Stay, then; I'll go alone. Fear comes upon me:
O, much I fear some ill unlucky thing.

Balthasar

As I did sleep under this yew-tree here,
I dreamt my master and another fought,
And that my master slew him.

Friar Laurence

Romeo!

Advances

Alack, alack, what blood is this, which stains
The stony entrance of this sepulchre?
What mean these masterless and gory swords
To lie discolour'd by this place of peace?

Enters the tomb

Romeo! O, pale! Who else? what, Paris too?
And steep'd in blood? Ah, what an unkind hour
Is guilty of this lamentable chance!
The lady stirs.

Juliet wakes

Juliet

O comfortable friar! where is my lord?
I do remember well where I should be,
And there I am. Where is my Romeo?

Noise within

Friar Laurence

I hear some noise. Lady, come from that nest
Of death, contagion, and unnatural sleep:
A greater power than we can contradict
Hath thwarted our intents. Come, come away.
Thy husband in thy bosom there lies dead;
And Paris too. Come, I'll dispose of thee
Among a sisterhood of holy nuns:
Stay not to question, for the watch is coming;
Come, go, good Juliet,

Noise again

I dare no longer stay.

Juliet

Go, get thee hence, for I will not away.

Exit Friar Laurence

What's here? a cup, closed in my true love's hand?
Poison, I see, hath been his timeless end:
O churl! drunk all, and left no friendly drop
To help me after? I will kiss thy lips;
Haply some poison yet doth hang on them,
To make die with a restorative.

Kisses him

Thy lips are warm.

First watchman

Within Lead, boy: which way?

Juliet

Yea, noise? then I'll be brief. O happy dagger!

Snatching Romeo's dagger

This is thy sheath;

Stabs herself

there rust, and let me die.

Falls on Romeo's body, and dies Enter Watch, with the Page of Paris

Page

This is the place; there, where the torch doth burn.

First watchman

The ground is bloody; search about the churchyard:
Go, some of you, whoe'er you find attach.
Pitiful sight! here lies the county slain,
And Juliet bleeding, warm, and newly dead,
Who here hath lain these two days buried.
Go, tell the prince: run to the Capulets:
Raise up the Montagues: some others search:
We see the ground whereon these woes do lie;
But the true ground of all these piteous woes
We cannot without circumstance descry.

Re-enter some of the Watch, with Balthasar

Second watchman

Here's Romeo's man; we found him in the churchyard.

First watchman

Hold him in safety, till the prince come hither.

Re-enter others of the Watch, with Friar Laurence

Third watchman

Here is a friar, that trembles, sighs and weeps:
We took this mattock and this spade from him,
As he was coming from this churchyard side.

First watchman

A great suspicion: stay the friar too.

Enter the Prince and Attendants

Prince

What misadventure is so early up,
That calls our person from our morning's rest?

Enter Capulet, Lady Capulet, and others

Capulet

What should it be, that they so shriek abroad?

Lady capulet

The people in the street cry Romeo,
Some Juliet, and some Paris; and all run,
With open outcry toward our monument.

Prince

What fear is this which startles in our ears?

First watchman

Sovereign, here lies the County Paris slain;
And Romeo dead; and Juliet, dead before,
Warm and new kill'd.

Prince

Search, seek, and know how this foul murder comes.

First watchman

Here is a friar, and slaughter'd Romeo's man;
With instruments upon them, fit to open
These dead men's tombs.

Capulet

O heavens! O wife, look how our daughter bleeds!
This dagger hath mista'en--for, lo, his house
Is empty on the back of Montague,--
And it mis-sheathed in my daughter's bosom!

Lady capulet

O me! this sight of death is as a bell,
That warns my old age to a sepulchre.

Enter Montague and others

Prince

Come, Montague; for thou art early up,
To see thy son and heir more early down.

Montague

Alas, my liege, my wife is dead to-night;
Grief of my son's exile hath stopp'd her breath:
What further woe conspires against mine age?

Prince

Look, and thou shalt see.

Montague

O thou untaught! what manners is in this?
To press before thy father to a grave?

Prince

Seal up the mouth of outrage for a while,
Till we can clear these ambiguities,
And know their spring, their head, their
true descent;
And then will I be general of your woes,
And lead you even to death: meantime forbear,
And let mischance be slave to patience.
Bring forth the parties of suspicion.

Friar Laurence

I am the greatest, able to do least,
Yet most suspected, as the time and place
Doth make against me of this direful murder;
And here I stand, both to impeach and purge
Myself condemned and myself excused.

Prince

Then say at once what thou dost know in this.

Friar Laurence

I will be brief, for my short date of breath
Is not so long as is a tedious tale.
Romeo, there dead, was husband to that Juliet;
And she, there dead, that Romeo's faithful wife:
I married them; and their stol'n marriage-day
Was Tybalt's dooms-day, whose untimely death
Banish'd the new-made bridegroom from the city,
For whom, and not for Tybalt, Juliet pined.
You, to remove that siege of grief from her,
Betroth'd and would have married her perforce
To County Paris: then comes she to me,
And, with wild looks, bid me devise some mean
To rid her from this second marriage,
Or in my cell there would she kill herself.
Then gave I her, so tutor'd by my art,
A sleeping potion; which so took effect
As I intended, for it wrought on her
The form of death: meantime I writ to Romeo,
That he should hither come as this dire night,
To help to take her from her borrow'd grave,
Being the time the potion's force should cease.
But he which bore my letter, Friar John,
Was stay'd by accident, and yesternight
Return'd my letter back. Then all alone
At the prefixed hour of her waking,
Came I to take her from her kindred's vault;
Meaning to keep her closely at my cell,
Till I conveniently could send to Romeo:
But when I came, some minute ere the time
Of her awaking, here untimely lay
The noble Paris and true Romeo dead.
She wakes; and I entreated her come forth,
And bear this work of heaven with patience:
But then a noise did scare me from the tomb;
And she, too desperate, would not go with me,
But, as it seems, did violence on herself.
All this I know; and to the marriage
Her nurse is privy: and, if aught in this
Miscarried by my fault, let my old life
Be sacrificed, some hour before his time,
Unto the rigour of severest law.

Prince

We still have known thee for a holy man.
Where's Romeo's man? what can he say in this?

Balthasar

I brought my master news of Juliet's death;
And then in post he came from Mantua
To this same place, to this same monument.
This letter he early bid me give his father,
And threatened me with death, going in the vault,
I departed not and left him there.

Prince

Give me the letter; I will look on it.
Where is the county's page, that raised the watch?
Sirrah, what made your master in this place?

Page

He came with flowers to strew his lady's grave;
And bid me stand aloof, and so I did:
Anon comes one with light to ope the tomb;
And by and by my master drew on him;
And then I ran away to call the watch.

Prince

This letter doth make good the friar's words,
Their course of love, the tidings of her death:
And here he writes that he did buy a poison
Of a poor 'pothecary, and therewithal
Came to this vault to die, and lie with Juliet.
Where be these enemies? Capulet! Montague!
See, what a scourge is laid upon your hate,
That heaven finds means to kill your joys with love.
And I for winking at your discords too
Have lost a brace of kinsmen: all are punish'd.

Capulet

O brother Montague, give me thy hand:
This is my daughter's jointure, for no more
Can I demand.

Montague

But I can give thee more:
For I will raise her statue in pure gold;
That while Verona by that name is known,
There shall no figure at such rate be set
As that of true and faithful Juliet.

Capulet

As rich shall Romeo's by his lady's lie;
Poor sacrifices of our enmity!

Prince

A glooming peace this morning with it brings;
The sun, for sorrow, will not show his head:
Go hence, to have more talk of these sad things;
Some shall be pardon'd, and some punished:
For never was a story of more woe
Than this of Juliet and her Romeo.

Exeunt

PD-icon.svg This work published before January 1, 1923 is in the public domain worldwide because the author died at least 100 years ago.

Simple English

File:Juliet
Juliet by J.W.Waterhouse, 1898

"Romeo and Juliet" is a play written by William Shakespeare. The play was published in an incomplete form in 1597. It is a tragedy or sad play. It is one of Shakespeare's most famous and popular plays; it is being performed on stage very often. Several movies have been made from it. It has been adapted to the opera several times, there are musicals and ballets. Sergei Prokofiev wrote a ballet based on the story, Leonard Bernstein's famous musical West Side Story uses the theme as well. Shakespeare did not make the story up himself. It had already been written by an Italian writer called Luigi de Porto, and then made into a poem in English by a writer called Arthur Brooke. Shakespeare must have read Brooke's poem and thought it was a good story to make into a play. Historians think that perhaps the families in the original story were not really families at all, but two gangs called the Montercchi and the Capiletti from San Bonifacio.

Contents

The story

The play is about two noble families that live in the old Italian city of Verona. The families are called the Montagues and the Capulets. Unfortunately, the fathers of the two noble houses have had an argument, and are enemies, so all their young servants are enemies as well. The young men who work for the Montagues and the Capulets get into gangs and fight each other in the street. Because it is fashionable to carry a sword, sometimes they get badly injured.

Verona is ruled by Prince Escalus. He tells the Montagues and the Capulets that there must be no more fighting or they will have to pay, but it is very hard to control the young men.

Montague has only one child, a teenage boy called Romeo. Capulet also has only one child, a beautiful 13-year-old daughter called Juliet. They do not know each other, because Juliet never goes anywhere without her nursemaid. However, Romeo and Juliet meet at a party and fall in love.

Their love should heal all the problems between their families, but because they are only teenagers, they think they will get into trouble from their parents, so they marry in secret. Because of their secret marriage, a series of things happen which brings about many deaths. The unhappy families of Montague and Capulet are finally brought together in grief.

About the play

File:Juliet - Philip H.
Juliet by P.H.Calderon, 1888.

Because this play was written in the 1500s, the English language that it uses is not exactly like the English that is used today. One example is that in modern English we say "you" for one person and also "you" for more than one person. But in Shakespeare's English, he often writes "thee" and "thou" when it means just one person.

Juliet says "If they do see thee, they will murder thee!"

Many words are used a little bit differently to the way they are used today, and other words are used that are now only used sometimes in poetry.

Romeo and Juliet, like many of Shakespeare's plays, is written is several different forms.

Some of it is prose, which is like normal speaking. The servants in the play usually talk in prose.

For example, two Capulet servants are planning to cause trouble with two Montague servants who are walking down the street.

Sampson: "Let us take the law of our side! Let them begin!"
Gregory: "I will frown as I pass by, and let them take it as they list!" (however they like)
Sampson: "I will bite my thumb at them, which is a disgrace to them, if they bare it!"

Some of the play is written in poetry which rhymes on the ends of the lines.

For example, when Friar Laurence goes out to tend his garden in the early morning, he says:

"The grey eyed Morn smiles on the frowning Night
Checkering the eastern clouds with streaks of light."
("Morn" is used to mean morning in poetry)
File:Francesco Hayez
Romeo and Juliet by Francesco Hayez, 1823

A lot of poetry has rhyme and rhythm. But most of this play is written in a type of poetry called blank verse. This means that although it does not usually rhyme, it has strong rhythm. The rhythm is exactly the same in most of the play, and in many of Shakespeare's other plays. The rhythm goes:

de-dah de-dah de-dah de-dah de-dah,
de-dah de-dah de-dah de-dah de-dah.

For example, Juliet, who is anxious to get a message from Romeo says:

"The clock struck nine when I did send the nurse!
In half an hour, she promised to return!"

The play finishes with two lines that rhyme. This is called a rhyming couplet.

The Prince says to Montague and Capulet:

"A glooming peace this morning with it brings;
The sun for sorrow will not show his head.
Go hence to have more talk of these sad things;
Some shall be pardoned and some punish-ed:
For never was a story of more woe
Than this of Juliet and her Romeo."
In simple English[1]

The most famous scene

File:Balkon der Julia
This old house in Verona is called the House of Juliet. Messages are stuck into the bricks.

Of all the scenes that have ever been written in plays, one of the most famous is in Romeo and Juliet.

After Romeo and Juliet have met at a party and fallen in love, Juliet goes up to bed. But she cannot sleep so she stands at her window and pretends she is talking with Romeo.

Romeo is going past and says "But soft, what light through yonder window breaks? ...It is my Lady! O, it is my Love!"
Juliet, not knowing he is there, says "Romeo, Romeo, wherefore art thou Romeo?" (Romeo, Romeo, why do you have to be who you are?) She wishes he was not called Romeo Montague but had some different name, so he was not an enemy.

Romeo climbs up onto the balcony. Juliet tells Romeo that her love for him is as deep and endless as the sea. They part from each other with the famous words:

"Good night! Good night! Parting is such sweet sorrow,
That I shall say Good night till it be morrow." (tomorrow)

This romantic scene has been acted and copied many times, sometimes seriously and sometimes for fun. One well-known scene that took its idea from this, is from West Side Story, a musical by Leonard Bernstein, which takes place on a fire-escape landing with the lovers, Tony and Maria, singing the lovesong, Tonight.

Movies

Romeo and Juliet has been performed on stage many times. There have also been forty different films

  • 1908 - Romeo and Juliet, a silent film was made by Vitagraph Studios in the US. Directed by J. Stuart Blackton, the film starred Paul Panzer as Romeo and Florence Lawrence as Juliet.
  • 1936 - Romeo and Juliet, produced by Irving Thalberg and directed by George Cukor of Classical Hollywood with Norma Shearer as Juliet and Leslie Howard as Romeo, but many critics said that the actors were too old.
  • 1968 - Romeo and Juliet, directed by Franco Zeffirelli. This film was made in Italy, with Olivia Hussey, who was 15, as Juliet and Milo O'Shea, who was 17, as Romeo. The costumes won an Oscar.
  • 1996 - Romeo + Juliet, directed by Baz Luhrmann, with Leonardo DiCaprio as Romeo and Claire Danes as Juliet. This very colourful version has a modern setting.

Adaptations

  • 1950s - West Side Story, by Leonard Bernstein, is a musical set in a modern city in the US. It is about two rival street gangs, the Jets and the Sharks. The Sharks are migrants from Puerto Rico. Some of the famous songs are Tonight, America, One Hand, One Heart and I feel Pretty. As a stage show, it was popular in America, the UK and Australia. In 1961, West Side Story was made into a movie.
  • 1999 - Shakespeare in Love, is the movie of a fictional (imaginary) story about how Shakespeare came to write Romeo and Juliet and some of his other famous plays.

Music

File:Verona Italy San Zeno
The Church of San Zeno where, by tradition, Romeo and Juliet were secretly married.

References

  1. "This morning has brought gloomy peace;
    The sun is hiding his face in sadness.
    Go away and discuss the sad things that have happened.
    Some people will be punished for what they have done, and other will be pardoned.
    There was never a story more sad
    Than this story of Juliet and her Romeo."
j

Other websites

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