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Romeo and Juliet. Act Two . Act 2, Scene 1: Summary. Mercutio teases Romeo, usually while they look for him and he purposely hides. Mercutio uses extended metaphor to make fun of Romeo; he pretends to be a magician while using sexual innuendo to try to provoke Romeo out of hiding.

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act 2 scene 1 summary
Act 2, Scene 1: Summary
  • Mercutio teases Romeo, usually while they look for him and he purposely hides.
  • Mercutio uses extended metaphor to make fun of Romeo; he pretends to be a magician while using sexual innuendo to try to provoke Romeo out of hiding.
  • He mainly mocks Romeo’s love for Rosaline.
  • After he gets no response, he goes home to bed.
act 2 scene 1 discussion
Act 2, Scene 1: Discussion
  • Why would Shakespeare have Mercutio talk in this way? What is the significance of it?
act 2 scene 2 summary
Act 2, Scene 2: Summary
  • Romeo, hidden from Juliet, sees her at an upstairs window. He compares her beauty to that of the sun, more bright than the stars, as glorious as an angel.
  • Juliet declares her love for Romeo in spite of his being a Montague. He is perfect, regardless of name.
  • When Romeo reveals himself, she fears for his safety.
  • Juliet warns Romeo that her family will kill him if he is caught there.
act 2 scene 2 summary1
Act 2, Scene 2: Summary
  • Juliet is embarrassed Romeo has overheard her declare her love for him so quickly; in turn, she asks if he loves her.
  • Romeo and Juliet exchange vows of love, but both are fearful.
  • Juliet worries that their love is too quick; Romeo only fears that what is happening is unreal – almost dream like.
act 2 scene 2 summary2
Act 2, Scene 2: Summary
  • Juliet promises marriage and says she’ll send a messenger tomorrow to speak to Romeo and figure out the time and place of the wedding.
  • They part, though reluctant. She compares him to a captive bird who cannot escape it’s owner.
  • He vows to seek Friar Lawrence’s help.
act 2 scene 2 discussion
Act 2, Scene 2: Discussion
  • With a partner, take a look at Juliet’s lines; what do you notice about the way she speaks vs. the way the men in the play speak? Compare her to not only Romeo, but others such as Mercutio as well.
  • Stage directions: stage this scene! Probably one of the most famous scenes in all of literature, I am interested in how you would act this out. Similar to our previous activity, put in some stage directions here, focusing particularly on some of the lines/sections you think are more important than others. Also, taking this activity one step further, act it out this time! At least some of it...
act 2 scene 3 summary
Act 2, Scene 3: Summary
  • It’s early morning and Friar Lawrence is gathering flowers and herbs.
  • Notice the contrast created here: he notes that just like people, they contain both healing medicine and poison; good and evil.
  • Friar Lawrence is afraid that Romeo has spent the night with Rosaline and is relieved to discover he hasn’t.
  • Romeo then tells Friar about he and Juliet’s mutual love and asks Friar to marry them.
act 2 scene 3 summary1
Act 2, Scene 3: Summary
  • After scolding Romeo for his fickleness about love, Friar agrees to marry them because he truly believes their marriage will end the family feud.
act 2 scene 3 discussion
Act 2, Scene 3: Discussion
  • Do you think that the Friar has made the right decision? Why or why not?
  • In lines 35-38 (my book) Friar Lawrence reveals one of the key themes in the play: Age versus Youth. This theme is revealed specifically as these two young lovers are trapped in the web of hate of the older generation. What is he saying about the young and old?
act 2 scene 4 summary
Act 2, Scene 4: Summary
  • Mercutio and Benvolio are joking around about Tybalt’s challenge sent to Romeo over his infatuation with Rosaline.
  • He is mocking Tybalt’s precise style of sword-fencing and the current fashions of speech.
  • Mercutio and Romeo joke around; Mercutio thinks Romeo is still in love with Rosaline; Romeo tries to go ‘pun for pun’ with Mercutio, trying to outdo each other.
  • Mercutio’s joking becomes more and more sexual.
act 2 scene 4 summary1
Act 2, Scene 4: Summary
  • When the Nurse appears, seeking Romeo, Mercutio directs his sexual teasing towards her.
  • Mercutio sings a song mocking the Nurse full of sexual indecencies.
  • She is not impressed with this and then cautions Romeo that he better not deceive Juliet.
  • Romeo arranges the marriage between he and Juliet to take place at Friar Lawrence’s cell that afternoon.
  • Romeo has arranged a rope ladder be sent to the Nurse so he can climb into Juliet’s bedroom.
act 2 scene 4 discussion
Act 2, Scene 4: Discussion
  • Interesting names:
    • Benvolio means “Well-wishing” (opposite to Malvolio in Twelfth Night which meant “Ill-wishing”.
    • Mercutiomeans ‘mercurial’: lively; effervescent; bouncy.
      • It also means ‘Mercury’: messenger of the Gods; he was a trickster, renowned for eloquence, luck, word-magic and dreams.
      • What might Prince Escalus indicate about his character/status?
act 2 scene 4 discussion1
Act 2, Scene 4: Discussion
  • Lines -151-153: Does the Nurse take the money?
  • Lines 168-172: Is the Nurse telling the truth? Use what you know/think of the Nurse’s character up to this point to decide if she is just telling Romeo what he wants to hear or not.
  • Why is most of this scene in prose?
act 2 scene 5 summary
Act 2, Scene 5: Summary
  • Juliet opens with a soliloquy here as she is impatient awaiting the Nurse’s return.
  • She discusses the speed of love and youth versus the slowness of the old; in this case, the Nurse’s delayed return.
  • The Nurse grumbles about aches and pains.
  • The Nurse plays with Juliet until she gets frustrated at which point Juliet discovers Romeo waits to marry her at Friar Lawrence’s cell.
act 2 scene 5 summary1
Act 2, Scene 5: Summary
  • The Nurse uses a sexual joke to send Juliet off to marry Romeo.
act 2 scene 5 discussion
Act 2,Scene 5: Discussion
  • In Juliet’s soliloquy, how is a sense of urgency created by Shakespeare?
act 2 scene 6 summary
Act 2, Scene 6: Summary
  • Romeo and Friar await Juliet’s arrival.
  • Romeo longs for marriage but his words have an ominous ring to them.
  • The Friar advises moderation in love rather than violent excess.
  • Romeo uses elaborate language asking Juliet to provide an ornate description of her love.
  • They leave to be married.
act 2 scene 6 discussion
Act 2, Scene 6: Discussion
  • Shakespeare chooses not to show the wedding ceremony as a part of the play. Why would he choose to leave this out? Would you put it in? How would it work?