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Why is Act One Scene V of 'Romeo and Juliet' an effective piece of drama?

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Why is Act One Scene V of 'Romeo and Juliet' an effective piece of drama? 'Romeo and Juliet' is a play, telling the tragic story of two lovers kept apart by their family's hate for one another. It was written by William Shakespeare. First published in 1597, the play is set in the Italian city of Verona and is themed on the love between Juliet, the daughter of the Capulet household, and Romeo, the son of the Montague household. Together they are forced to hide their love for one another due to the Capulet and Montague's bitter rivalry. Juliet, of the Capulet household, is being primed for a marriage to Paris, while Romeo is apparently in love with a woman called Rosaline, whom we never actually see in the play. The play, as agreed by many critics, is one of Shakespeare's earlier works, and, unusually for his earlier stories is one of tragedy. The play, not unusually for Shakespeare, is full of contrasts, comparisons and dramatic moments, which all add to the full amount of variety of events that occur. As well as contrast, there are also many coincidences, as in Act One Scene V where Romeo temporarily forgets about the true love of his life, Rosaline. ...read more.


A particularly effective example is line forty-six: "As a rich jewel in an Ethiop's ear" Romeo is implying that, although the Capulet's are his bitterest enemies, he sees Juliet as a precious thing; as an 'Ethiop' would see a jewel as being precious. An 'Ethiop' is an Ethiopian, however in the play, Shakespeare used this term of any Negro. Romeo also makes reference to the fact that Juliet's beauty makes her stand out beyond everyone else at the party: "...A snowy dove trooping with crows" In section four, we see Juliet's cousin, the fiery character of the Capulet household, Tybalt wants to confront Romeo and question him as to why he is at the Capulet's party. The audience would find the entrance of Tybalt quite exciting as he has a tendency to do eccentric and fiery things; he also speaks short, sharp phrases that increase the pace of the section. However Capulet, who wishes to maintain the peace at the party, stops him from doing this. The fact that Capulet stops Tybalt gives the suggestion message that something is going to be allowed to happen. Should Romeo have been excluded from the party at this time, then he would probably have never been able to meet Juliet. ...read more.


-If he be married, my grave is like to be my wedding bed." Shakespeare's idea of tragedy is fate working against the two lovers; this foreboding message is no exception as it is an indication to the audience of what might happen, and, as would be later found in the story, does actually happen. There is no question that this scene is an extremely effective piece of drama. Shakespeare uses numerous techniques to change the mood, and to some extent, the pace of the scene. These changes add to the drama, for example, in romantic parts, such as section five, the pace is extremely slow whereas in section one, the pace is headlong as there is massive excitement about the party. The change from prose to poetry also adds to the drama and is an effective way as to how the pace is slowed down. As I have already said, there are foreboding thoughts and anticipation of what is to happen throughout the scene that keeps the audience mind working at all times. The different thoughts that wind together creates massive dramatic tension that suggest that Romeo and Juliet's love for one another will be ill fated. GCSE English/ Romeo and Juliet Joe Smith ...read more.

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