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Romeo & Juliet. Acts 3.2 to end of 3.5. Love & Passion. Act 3, Scene 2

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romeo juliet

Romeo & Juliet

Acts 3.2 to end of 3.5

love passion
Love & Passion
  • Act 3, Scene 2
  • During Juliet’s long soliloquy – spoken in beautiful poetry – begins with images of galloping horses, fire and speed. She calls on Phaeton – a character from Greek mythology who almost destroyed the universe by recklessly driving the sun’s fiery chariot too close to the earth – to bring night so that she can secretly meet Romeo.
  • Notice how the Lovers almost meet at night and never in the light of day.
  •  Why do you think this may be?
  • In Juliet’s soliloquy she also talks about her longing to share the pleasures of sexual love with Romeo. (This scene will be analysed later in the unit).
  • Juliet recovers from the shock and anger at Romeo murdering Tybalt and defends him when the Nurse starts to criticise him. This is shown as a contrast to her mother’s reaction. Juliet re-evaluates her opinion of the situation because she loves Romeo and is loyal to him. Lady Capulet’s inability to forgive Romeo on any level emphasises her inability to show love to anyone.
love passion1
Love & Passion
  • Act 3, Scene 3
  • We see Romeo saying that being banished is as bad as being condemned to death because his whole world (Juliet) is in Verona.
  • We also see Romeo ask the Friar “Hadst thou no poison mix’d?” (3.3.44) so that he can end his life there and then instead of living without Juliet.
  • What does this tell us about Romeo’s character? Why do you think this is important to the play?
love passion2
Love & Passion
  • Act 3, Scene 4
  • In this scene, we see Lord Capulet telling Paris that Juliet is distraught about Tybalt’s death, but he intends for them to be wedded earlier than planned on Thursday (they speak late on Monday night). He stresses it will have to be a quiet affair in respect of Tybalt’s memory. He gives no reason for his sudden change of heart.
  • Dramatic tension is increased throughout this scene as the audience know that Romeo and Juliet are upstairs in Juliet’s room whilst Paris and Capulet are talking. There are certain hints that they may be found out, but Paris and Capulet decide that it is best not to disturb her because of her supposed grief.
  • It is important to note that Capulet has now forced time to be sped up even faster in the play. The play began on Sunday morning and it is now late Monday night – in only 48 hours, all the action up to now has taken place.
the friar
The Friar

Act 3, Scene 3.

  • The Friar is a re-assuring, calming influence (which character is he therefore substituting?)
  • In 3.3 he slows the pace of the play down and asks Romeo “Art thou a man?” (3.3.108). He says he is behaving like a wild animal, instead of a man, by letting his emotions get the better of him. He tells Romeo to go to Juliet to comfort her before leaving for Mantua before daybreak – note the time of day.
  • The Friar assures Romeo that he will find a way to let everyone know that they are married, return them to their friends and beg a pardon from Prince Escalus.
  • Act 3, Scene 5.
  • We see fate when Juliet says she has “an ill-divining soul” (3.5.54) and imagines that she sees Romeo dead in the bottom of a tomb.
  • Romeo says that they are pale because “Dry sorrow drinks our blood” (3.5.59), meaning they look sad. These are the last words that Juliet hears from Romeo. This development of the imagery of drinking, where the body itself (‘blood’) is now being consumed is extended later with the image of death coming to ‘consume’ Juliet in the tomb.
  • We also see fate when Lord Capulet cannot believe that Juliet is not grateful for the fate he has given her by arranging for her to marry Paris.
  • The nurse believes that Juliet is more fortunate with her match to Paris “for he excels your first [Romeo]” (3.5.224). This is because he is wealthier and a “lovely gentleman” (3.5.219).  What does this show us about the Nurse’s attitude to love?
  • Act 3, Scene 5.
  • Juliet now says she will try the Friar’s plan, but if it fails she has one final option left to her: “If all else fail, myself have power to die.” (3.5.241)
  • She also talks about the Friar’s remedy – likely to be a mixture of herbs.
  • Here, the coming tragedy is again signalled to the audience.
  • Act 3, Scene 5.
  • Lady Capulet threatens to have Romeo poisoned – another example of the prophetic manner of many of the ideas in the play.
  • She says to Juliet that showing too much grief (which Lady Capulet thinks is for the death of her cousin, Tybalt) is foolish. This reflects her cold-hearted character.
  • Juliet clearly intends to deceive her mother here.
  • Lady Capulet takes what Juliet means to be insupport of her Cousin, but the audience know it is Romeo she is talking about – pp.78-79
  • Notice how calm and mature Juliet is here in facing her mother here – compared to the girl we met merely 48 hours earlier.
  • Juliet is then informed that her father has arranged for her to marry Paris (an idea of fate).
  • Capulet now flies into a fury with Juliet. His speech is full of ironic references to storms
  • Why do you think this is? p80
  • It is ironic because it is he who will storm about in a short while when he hears that Juliet refuses to marry Paris.
  • Act 3, Scene 5.
  • Lady Capulet remarks that “I would the fool were married to her grave” (3.5.140)
  • What does this mean?
  • Enforces the imagery of death as a lover for Juliet.
  • Capulet goes bezerk at Juliet in this scene, calling her a traitor and that she will marry Paris. Even Lady Capulet feels her husband has gone too far, but he will not calm down.
  • He says she may beg in the streets and starve before he will have her disobey him.
  • We also see the Nurse give Juliet the advice to be quiet about her marriage to Romeo and marry Paris. Although the advice is well-intended, Juliet calls her a ‘wicked fiend’ and cannot forgive her for her betrayal. Like how Mercutio misjudged Romeo’s true character and feelings, the nurse has also underestimated Juliet’s.
  • Both Romeo and Juliet are now completely alone. Only the Friar remains faithful and even he will fail them at their hour of greatest need in the tomb.
imagery technique not a theme
Imagery (Technique not a theme)
  • Act 3, Scene 2
  • The Nurse arrives and confuses Juliet about who is dead and who is banished. The imagery of storms and violence follow the lovers through the play. For example, when Juliet is confused by the Nurse, she says “What storm is this that blows so contrary?” (3.2. 64).
  • Juliet’s speech about Romeo when she finally understands what has happened is full of oxymorons. She curses him, saying “O serpent heart, hid with a flowering face...” (3.2.73). This is similar to Romeo’s speech in 2.2 about “Bright smoke, cold fire..” (1.1.178).
  • Her reference to serpents, wolves and ravens are all dark and dangerous imagery. Such imagery of opposites (oxymorons) appear throughout the play.
  • Imagery of death being Juliet’s lover
  • Juliet’s reaction to Romeo’s banishment is that everything is now dead and ruined – her family, Romeo and herself. She says that death, not Romeo will take her maidenhead. There is a suggestion here that both she and Romeo are in a way already ‘dead’ because they will be separated by his banishment.
imagery technique not a theme1
Imagery (Technique not a theme)
  • Act 3, Scene 3
  • In this scene, we see the Friar come to tell Romeo that he has escaped death and he is to be banished from Verona. This is an ironic twist to the story, because the audience already knows that this will be reversed by the end of the play.
  • We see the Friar also uses the imagery of death as a lover in this scene when he says Romeo is ‘wedded to calamity’ (3.3.3).
  • This image of death as a lover in re-enforced more strongly at the end of the play in the tomb.
  • Act 3, Scene 5
  • Death as Juliet’s lover is again made reference to in 3.5.201-202: “Make the bridal bed / In that dim monument [tomb] where Tybalt lies.”
imagery technique not a theme2
Imagery (Technique not a theme)
  • Act 3, Scene 5
  • Romeo and Juliet say farewell. Juliet refuses to marry Paris and her parents become angry. She decides to ask Friar Lawrence for help.
  • We see them share their wedding night in Juliet’s room. She tells Romeo he does not yet need to leave because morning is a long way off – Night in their friend because it allows them to be together.
  • The light of day has, up to now, been associated with different types of hot passion: lust, fighting and anger. Romeo says that as more and more light appears their sadness grows greater and greater: “More light and light; more dark and dark our woes” (3.5.36).
  • Juliet does not want daybreak to come as he will have to leave for Mantua. He says he will agree with her that it is not day if she wishes, but it will bring with it death. He says he is prepared to die for love – the audience already know how ominous and ironic these words really are.