• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Discuss the dramatic significance of the character of Tybalt in "Romeo and Juliet"

Extracts from this document...


Discuss the dramatic function of the character Tybalt in "Romeo and Juliet" Tybalt, a Capulet and Juliet's cousin appears in only three scenes. Act 1 scene 1, Act 1 scene 5 and his third and final appearance Act 3 scene 1 which we see him in a typically aggressive mood. His name, Tybalt is the name of the cat in the traditional Reynard and Fox stories...hence Mercutio's name for him, 'Prince of Cats'. In contrast to Mercutio and Benvolio, Tybalt is a relatively one-dimensional character. Nonetheless, Mercutio mistakes the true Tybalt when he describes him as belonging to the fashionable set of 'lisping affecting fantasticoes' act 2 sc 4, for Tybalt is a dangerous man. Tybalt appears first when Benvolio is endeavouring to separate the warring factions in Act1 sc1. He goes for his sword, rejecting Benvolios plea to 'keep the peace' ac1 sc1 a direct contrast for he's always trying to stop fights instead of making them like Tybalt. ...read more.


The cruel killing of Mercutio sparks of the final tragedy, as it becomes the cause of Romeos banishment when he seeks revenge. Unlike Romeo or Benvolio, there is never beautiful poetry or figurative language in his speech; he is never speaking of love only hate. Everything he says is either an insult or a threat. 'Thou art a villain' Act s sc1, 'Turn thee Benvolio, look upon thy death' act 1 sc 1. His aggressive language at the ball 'Fetch me my rapier boy' contrasts strongly with the lovers' sonnet and its talk of holy and sacred things. Although Capulet calms the situation down, the rhyming couplets of Tybalt's speech as he exits Act1 sc5 are chilling. 'I will withdraw: but this intrusion shall Now seeing sweet, convert to bitterest gall' (gall meaning poison) Nearly all his speeches are short and direct in style, making statements rather than asking questions, 'I'll not endure him' Act 1 sc 5 In a modern staged production Tybalt, would appear in the latest fashions and designer wear. ...read more.


His expression should show disdain of everything and everyone. Overall, Tybalt represents the ugliness that lies below the surface in this divided society. It is interesting to contrast the consequences of his death with those of Romeo and Juliet. His death ensures that more deaths will follow; the lovers' deaths that the killing comes to an end. His personality clearly shows lack of responsibility for others, but in fact a rather shallow and undeveloped character dramatically. His family noticeably love him. The Nurse says 'the best friend I ever had, courteous Tybalt! Honest gentlemen' Act 3 sc 2. But as the audience we are only portrayed with one side of Tybalt, a villain. This contrasts well with the lovers and also adds to the atmosphere and sets in motion when the tragedy occurs in the play. Tybalt also shows responsibility for the killings of Mercutio providing a reason for Romeos banishment, all for one of his fights. If Verona is a divided society, Tybalt is the one man who wishes it to remain so. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Romeo and Juliet section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month
  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work