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Discuss the Ways that Shakespeare Makes Act 1 Scene 5 of Romeo and Juliet Dramatically Effective

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Introduction

Discuss the Ways that Shakespeare Makes Act 1 Scene 5 of Romeo and Juliet Dramatically Effective Romeo and Juliet is a play that displays a fine example of a tragic love story. The story is situated in Verona, and is based around the family feud between the Montagues and the Capulets. When Romeo and Juliet fall in love, the two main themes; love and hate, are juxtaposed. The audience know, prior to the meeting between Romeo and Juliet, that they are "star crossed lovers". However, they are ill fated and doomed by the influence of the stars. From this knowledge the audience expect Romeo and Juliet to meet in Act 1 Scene 5, and a significant part of the play to occur, such as love or fighting, and therefore the two main themes will be intertwined once again. In the opening of Act 1 Scene 5, Capulet is welcoming his guests for the big party and the atmosphere is jovial and light hearted. The audience are engaged as they are anticipating something momentous to happen at the party. The mood relates to the end of Act 1 Scene 4 where Mercutio, Benvolio and Romeo are talking about the party, as Mercutio and Benvolio are very excited. Romeo thinks that something bad is going to happen when he says "I fear...fearful date". This relates to the fact that he and Juliet are "star crossed lovers" and has a sense of dramatic irony, as the audience are aware that he is doomed, therefore in the excitement of the opening of Act 1 Scene 5 the dramatic affect is very anticipatory. ...read more.

Middle

This talent of enticing the audience's attention is what helps to make Shakespeare a very skilled writer. One of the main points of Act 1 Scene 5 is to exhibit the romance between Romeo and Juliet in their first ever meeting. Their first words that are exchanged are in the form of a very romantic sonnet which uses iambic pentameter, which captivates the audience and sets an amorous scene that contrasts immensely with the heated debate between Capulet and Tybalt previously, as once again Shakespeare skilfully switches themes. The sonnet contains a certain degree of religious imagery from which we can surmise many things. The language used by Shakespeare here eloquently describes the deep passion that they feel for one another, and the audience are well rewarded for their patience in waiting for the two lovers to meet. Romeo quickly forgets about Rosaline and it seems that Juliet is his new "religion". Romeo uses religious imagery often such as at the start of the sonnet when he says "This holy shrine, the gentle sin is this." Romeo metaphorically refers to Juliet as a "holy shrine", from this we can infer that Juliet is his place of worship and his new religion. Furthermore we can see that Romeo values love greatly in his life as he refers to Juliet as a religion, which can also mean his way of life. The use of religious imagery has an appeal to the audience as they show great respect for religion; this helps to keep them engaged. ...read more.

Conclusion

This relates to the fact that they are destined to be doomed, as well as destined to fall in love. This creates a stronger sense of dramatic irony, as the audience already knows Romeo and Juliet's fate. This dialogue helps to keep the audience enticed throughout the rest of the play, as it builds up even more tension to help increase the dramatic effect. In conclusion, Act 1 Scene 5 is very dramatic because Shakespeare uses Capulets speech to set a contrasting happy mood to that of the beginning of the play, so already this scene was different. Shakespeare expressed Romeo's declaration of his love for Juliet to intensify the mood even more. Then Tybalt's speech was used to renew the hatred and conflict between the Capulets and the Montagues, and also to use the key theme of hate. Finally Shakespeare added the kiss of Romeo and Juliet, to heighten the drama and passion but also to represent a key theme, that of love. These two themes, love and hate, are used constantly throughout the play to give it an edge over other plays. These themes are used because the world can relate to love and hate easily, as it is an emotion of everyday life, which has helped to inspire many more books and films. This scene is crucial to the rest of the play as it contains all of these important and dramatic scenes mentioned. In my opinion, Act 1 Scene 5 is one of if not the most important scenes in the play, purely because of its use of significant drama that is vital in setting the scene for the rest of the play and the tragic tale that is Romeo and Juliet. Jake Scaddan 10L ...read more.

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