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Both act 1, scene 5 and act 2, scene 2 relate Romeo and Juliet(TM)s first meeting and declarations of love to the rest of the play. Shakespeare has achieved this through foreshadowing events that are yet to come, introducing or reusing imagery th

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Introduction

Both act 1, scene 5 and act 2, scene 2 relate Romeo and Juliet's first meeting and declarations of love to the rest of the play. Shakespeare has achieved this through foreshadowing events that are yet to come, introducing or reusing imagery that is prevalent throughout the play, and sealing the fate of all the characters, as within the play, no one escapes from the tragedies that follow these two scenes. Act one scene five is crucial to the play, where Romeo and Juliet first meet. It is also where the fate of Mercutio, Tybalt and in turn Romeo and Juliet is sealed. The idea of fate is very important in this scene, for example, the words exchanged by Romeo and Juliet prior to their kiss, are in the form of a sonnet. This reminds the audience of the prologue, which was also in the form of a sonnet, noted by the rhyming couplet at the end, "...though grant prayers for prayers sake...while my prayer's effect I take." This foreshadowed the untimely death of both Romeo and Juliet, the 'star crossed lovers'. The sonnet serves the dual purpose of both reminding the audience of the prologue and adding to the romantic effect given by Romeo and Juliet's love, as sonnets are generally associated with love and romanticism. Sonnets are a perfect, idealized poetic form, this could also reflect the state Romeo and Juliet felt they had entered in being with each other, or it could possibly be used to contrast the circumstances that their love has been derived from. The shared sonnet between Romeo and Juliet, therefore, creates a formal link between their love and their destiny. ...read more.

Middle

Instead of being in two minds of what to do, Juliet instantly condemns herself, and forgetting Romeo isn't an option, "I must love a loathed enemy". As such, the audience cannot help but feel sorry for Romeo and Juliet, and thus, enthralling them into curiosity as to what will happen next and how they will overcome this problem. Act 2 scene 1 is, in my opinion, the happiest in the play. Within this scene Romeo and Juliet pronounce their love for each other and agree to marry the next day. Although star imagery is prevalent within this scene, "the brightness of her cheek would shame those stars", reminding the audience of the prologue and the fate of the two lovers, Shakespeare has predominantly devoted this scene to exploring the young love shared by Romeo and Juliet. This scene is commonly known as 'the balcony scene', (so called because it is often staged with Juliet on a balcony, though the stage directions suggest only that she is at a window above Romeo). Shakespeare plumbs the depths of the young lovers' characters, and captures the subtleties of their interaction, as in Juliet's struggle between the need for caution and an overpowering desire to be with Romeo "That I must love a loathed enemy". In this scene Romeo decides he cannot go home, but instead ventures into the Capulet mansion regardless of the dangers doing so entails, again highlighting the fact that their love overtakes everything else. Shakespeare must use the full length of each day in order to compress the action of the play into just four days. ...read more.

Conclusion

Both these scenes introduce us to the kind of relationship Romeo and Juliet are about to enter. It is evident from both scenes that the love shared between them is extremely passionate and possibly dangerous. These scenes foreshadow the marriage, due to religious implications, Tybalt's death, due to his anger of Romeo's arrival and the death of Romeo and Juliet, due to many factors, namely Juliet's anxiety as to whether or not Romeo was married. The religious language creates an impression of awe and wonder on Romeo and Juliet's behalf and also their naivety and innocence is affirmed. Also, these two scenes link the prologue as the foreshadowed death of the two protagonists is confirmed. This much anticipated scene, in which the two protagonists first meet, lifts the play off the ground and soaring into a whirlwind of tragedy. Despite the play being four hundreds previous to a modern day audience's era, and the natural change in social arrangements, all this is forgotten. The focus gets quickly drawn away from the time period due to the forceful and gripping nature of the plot and language. These scenes, in particular, provide an excellent example of Shakespeare's unparallel combination of love and tragedy, in which the love is touching, but daunting, as the audience are aware of the sinister side waiting to emerge. In true Shakespearian style, however, Shakespeare manages to give the audience a time to forget about the forthcoming tragedy. The language used to describe the love of Romeo and Juliet is so powerful, all other concepts are forgotten, hence building empathy for the characters, allowing us, the audience, to revel in the wonders, not just the tragedies, of forbidden love. ...read more.

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