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Comment on various sorts of love in the play 'Romeo and Juliet. How does Shakespeare use language to reinforce these feelings?

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Introduction

Romeo and Juliet Comment on various sorts of love in the play 'Romeo and Juliet. How does Shakespeare use language to reinforce these feelings? Romeo and Juliet, a tale of two 'Star-crossed' lovers, is similar to any modern-day, magazine featured love story. It features a typical teenage romance, which is destined for tragedy. Take West Side Story or even Grease; they all thrive around the same plot. William Shakespeare wrote Romeo and Juliet in the 16th Century. It is set in the 12th Century in the thriving city of Verona amongst the hate of two rival families; The Capulets and The Montagues. The plot intertwines itself around different types of love and ends with an act of truelove. Only through the young lover's death do the two feuding families finally shake hands in a sign of reconciliation. Throughout the play Romeo and Juliet depend on one another as a source of support and love. One prime example of this is of Juliet and her nurse. This type of love is also featured at the beginning of the play between Romeo and his cousin, Benvolio. Throughout the beginning of Act 1 Scene 1 both Lord and Lady Montague (Romeo's parents) ...read more.

Middle

In Act 1 Scene 1 Romeo declares 'She is too fair, to wise, wisely too fair, To merit bliss by making me despair.' Romeo is indeed in despair as Rosaline, the women he apparently loves, has sworn that he will remain a virgin for the rest of her life. Benvolio reminds Romeo by saying 'Then she hath sworn that she will still live chaste.' Romeo partly in anger, starts using elaborate language to further describe his infatuation. He says: 'Love is a smoke made with the fume of sighs, Being purged, a fire sparkling in lover's eyes.' Romeo's love for Rosaline echoes Petrach's, a popular English poet, work. Petrarch used very heavy descriptive language in his poetry. Romeo was almost obsessed with Rosaline but she rejected his advances. This type of infatuation is called Petrarchan love. Romeo's love for Rosaline is classed as unrequited' love or almost courtly love. Shakespeare wrote Romeo's melodramatic speech about Rosaline to seem almost unconvincing. It was as if Shakespeare didn't want the audience to believe that Romeo's feelings were genuine. He uses oxymoron's to persuade us that in fact Romeo's love for Rosaline is false. An example of this is when Romeo says: 'O brawling love, loving Hate, O heavy lightness, serious vanity.' ...read more.

Conclusion

One character who is not related to Juliet yet shows parental-like love towards her is her nurse. We know that previous to when the play is set that the nurse has lost her child. Although that Juliet's Nurse does not believe in 'true love' she expresses love for Juliet. She lets Juliet and her lover, an enemy of the family, meet. In Act 1 Scene 3 line 60-63 she shows affection towards Juliet after conveying messages to from one lover to another: 'Peace, I have done. God mark thee to his grace, Thou wast the prettiest babe that e'er I nursed. And I might live to see thee married once, I have my wish. ' The language used by the nurse is very affectionate and personal. This helps to reinforce the Nurse's Parental love for Juliet. The play ends with a triumph of true love over a dutiful love, the marriage between Juliet and Paris, and the hate between the two families. Romeo and Juliet perform the ultimate act of true love by dying for each other in order to be together. The two feuding families of Verona finally shake hands and are united through this tragedy. In shaking hands they are formalising Romeo and Juliet's love. Capulet says: O brother Montague, give me thy hand. This is my daughter's jointure, for no more can I demand.' Ellie Whidden 0234 1 ...read more.

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