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Discuss the way that Shakespeare creates tension and excitement in act 3 scene 1.

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Introduction

Discuss the way that Shakespeare creates tension and excitement in act 3 scene 1. In the previous scene Romeo and Juliet had secretly married. Friar Laurence agrees to marry them: "So smile the heavens upon this holy act" But he also warns them that "these violent delights have violent ends" Act 3 scene 1 is set in the public place of Verona. Shakespeare shocks the audience right at the opening of the scene, as Mercutio and Benvolio, who we would expect to be joking about, are now talking about heated arguments: "And if we meet we shall not scape a brawl" Shakespeare is using here dramatic irony, because we know that Mercutio will have a fight with Tybalt. Words like 'brawl' and 'mad blood' set up a hot, heated scene. ...read more.

Middle

The structure of act three, scene one, changes as the scene goes on. This change in structure and changes from short sentences to long speeches symbolise the change in emotion. In Mercutio's speech at the start of the scene, although he is speaking about quarrelling and how Benvolio quarrels, there is some aspect of humour because the audience know that Benvolio is not like that. Now that the action has become a lot quicker, and the fighting has become more intense, they speak in bursts of short sentences showing that the scene is getting more heated and intense: "Come sir, your passado." "I am for you" Here Shakespeare uses a monosyllabic sentence to create impact on audience. The audience do not know that there is going to be a fight because Romeo responds to Tybalt's insult in a friendly way. ...read more.

Conclusion

When Romeo kills Tybalt, Benvolio warns that Romeo will be condemned to death by Prince as a result of the fight. Poor Romeo feels that fate is controlling him and playing a cruel game with him by personifying fortune: "O, I am fortune's fool." The alliteration in this line adds to the tension. When the Prince arrives on the scene, Lady Capulet goes into a hysterical outburst and wants Romeo dead, which heightens the tension further. Benvolio tries to defuse the situation by playing down Romeo's aggressive role. "With gentle breath, calm look, knees humbly bowed" Shakespeare structures the whole play very carefully. Act two scene four is full of humour and good natured banter. Romeo is happy because he is married to Juliet. This makes act three, scene one more tragic because of the happy scene that they were in before. The contrast between the previous scene and the savage events at the present moment makes this scene powerful. ?? ?? ?? ?? ...read more.

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