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Did Shakespeare intend us to believe that the love between Romeo and Juliet was genuine?

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Introduction

Romeo and Juliet, by William Shakespeare Did Shakespeare intend us to believe that the love between Romeo and Juliet was genuine? Was Romeo and Juliet's love, based on looks, rebellion and inexperience, or was it genuine? After studying this play, about two infatuated teenagers, who died for one another, we have decided to answer the question, 'did Shakespeare intend us to believe that the love between Romeo and Juliet was real?' This tale, originated from as early as the second Christian era, by Xenophen of Ephesus. Various writers, including a man named Arthur Brooke, later elaborated this story. Brooke's tale, The Tragical Historye of Romeus and Juliet, was a long narrative poem, the story of which took place over nine months. Shakespeare then wrote his version, the play, which took place over only four days. This shortness of time, intensified their love, which was Shakespeare's intention. The first thing that leads us to believe that their love was true, is actually known before Romeo and Juliet ever set eyes on each other. In Act 1, scene 1, Romeo is speaking with Benvolio, and he is 'apparently' in love with Rosaline. He thinks that he will never love another woman; that Rosaline is 'the one' for him. However, he knows that she does not return his love. What Shakespeare wanted us to notice in the beginning of the play, was the fact that Romeo was very different to the other young men in Verona. In the same scene, before Romeo had entered, Sampson and Gregory, two young Capulets, had been discussing women, and how they will strip their servants of their virginity. Sampson: I will be cruel with the maids: I will cut off their heads. (Act 1, scene 1, Lines: 20-21.) This is what Sampson said, which proves how different he is from Romeo. Romeo would never say anything like this, because it is not in his character; he believes that love is pure, and from the heart, which shows that he is mature for his age. ...read more.

Middle

She had been a mother quite young, although in those days, it was not out of the ordinary. However, maybe if she had waited longer, until she lost her childhood, and become a mother, she would be truly as wise as Juliet. Although Lady Capulet had conceived, and given birth to Juliet, she was not a true mother to her. She found it hard and embarrassing to speak to Juliet about marriage, which showed us just how hard it must have been for Juliet to live as the daughter of the Capulet. The nurse however, had no problems in talking to Juliet. The nurse is more of a mother to Juliet, than Lady Capulet could ever be. She nurtured her and breast-fed her as a baby. The nurse is the one who has cared for, and raised Juliet, as if she were her own. The nurse is good at heart, but often is quite rude in what she says. She tells somewhat 'bawdy' jokes, which Juliet has grown up with. Juliet's reactions to what the nurse says, is a sign of her innocence. She would not speak that way herself, but she does laugh at what the nurse states. Nurse; No less? Nay, bigger - women grow by men! (Act 1, scene 3, Line: 96.) The nurse is one of the few characters in the play, who brings a comical theme to Romeo and Juliet. The nurse is Juliet's best friend, and nobody could replace Juliet in the nurse's life, just as nobody could replace the nurse in Juliet's life. The nurse just wants Juliet to be happy, and when she hears that Paris wants to marry Juliet, she is happy, and thinks that it will please Juliet, but when she discovers that Juliet is not happy with being made to marry Paris, she does try to help her, and bring her together with Romeo, which I think Shakespeare wanted us to observe, as another type of love in the play - the love between the nurse and Juliet. ...read more.

Conclusion

He gave Juliet the poison to enable her to fake her own death, and gave her his word, that Romeo would receive the letter, telling him the situation; but he let her down. Romeo did not receive the letter, and although this was because of unforeseen circumstances, it was the Friar's responsibility, to ensure that he got it. If Romeo had received the letter, maybe neither of them would have died, but that is something, which will never be known. Maybe if the Friar had not given Juliet that poison, Romeo and Juliet would have found a way to stay together; who knows? What we do know however, is that through wrong judgement, the Friar in fact helped to kill both Romeo and Juliet. The final incident, that tells us that their love was pure, was when they were both willing to die for one another. In Act 5, Scene 3, when Romeo comes to Juliet's deathbed, after he has killed Paris, he says to Juliet, Romeo: Here's to my love. (Act 5, Scene 3, Line: 119.) and with that, he drinks the remedy He then says; Romeo: O true apothecary: Thy drugs are quick. Thus with a kiss I die. (Act 5, Scene 3, Lines: 120.) Then he dies. He knows that he could not have lived without Juliet, his one true love, and so he was willing to die, not for her, but with her. If he could not live his life with her, then he could not live his life at all. The tragedy then comes, when Juliet awakens, only to find that her Romeo had died. Her scheme had failed - she had forced Romeo to his death. I think that Shakespeare wanted his audience to wonder about Juliet's motives of her suicide. Was it because she knew that she could not live without Romeo, or was it through guilt? Either way, we know that it was genuine love, because she was willing to die for him. So, it was true love, as we now know, between 'Juliet, and her Romeo'. Word count: 3,114 Hannah Voice ...read more.

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