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Even from just the prologue you can see the hatred the two families have for each other. The words 'mutiny', 'fatal', 'star cross'd', 'misadventur'd and 'overthrows' all signify the tragedy, pain and conflict that the play will unfold.

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Romeo and Juliet The first fourteen lines of Shakespeare's play gives a background of what the play is about and helps you understand it. Someone who is not a character in Romeo and Juliet reads it, so is a neutral person just letting you know what is happening. The third line is ' From ancient grudge break to new mutiny '. This makes us aware that there is conflict from the start and that is ongoing. It is referring to the two families who have been involved in conflict for many years but we never learn who or why the conflict started. ' A pair of star cross'd lovers take their life ', shows that the play will have a tragic ending so you know from the beginning. In the 1600's people believed heavily that the stars influenced your life and determined your fate. Shakespeare has used this here to reveal the fate he has planned for the forbidden lovers. I think that in the Elizabethan period when Shakespeare wrote this play, the prologue would have also been used to quiet the audience ready for the play to begin. ...read more.


He talks of the consequences if he goes to the party, ' my mind misgives some consequence yet hanging in the stars'. This refers back to how Elizabethan people believed the stars mapped out their lives. Romeo and Juliet seem to struggle against fate as many things go wrong for them that seem beyond their control. Families who have hated each other for generations threaten both lovers and Juliet knows that if her kinsman discover Romeo they will kill him as she says to him 'If the do see thee they will murder thee'. This continuously reminds us that death is a possibility for this love struck teens. Death is repeatedly mentioned during the play and the older characters know 'they are born to die' whilst the younger characters in the play have their lives cut short by early death. Throughout the play there are 5 deaths, however they are all deaths of young people (Mercutio, Tybalt, Paris, Romeo and Juliet.). Words and phrases such as 'untimely death, deathbed and death's darting eye are used. Shakespeare also personifies death by saying ' death is my son in law, death is my heir, my daughter he hath wedded' (act 4 sc.5) ...read more.


This is the dramatic finale to the play that has been built up with language throughout. It is now finally that the ending that had been pre planned is unveiled. The final words of the play are ' A glooming peace this morning with it brings, The sun for sorrow will not show its head. Go hence to have more talk of these sad things; Some shall be pardoned, and some punished: For never was a story of more woe Than this of Juliet and Romeo'. This sums up what Shakespeare wanted a tragic love story, but with hope for a brighter future? In conclusion I think that Shakespeare explores conflict in five main sections ; love and hate, fate and free will, death and life, public and private and light and dark. Although the play is filled with hatred due to conflicts it is also heavily packed with language of love. I believe that Shakespeare had a well thought ending to this play as it does suggest hope and a less bleak future, The loss of a daughter and the loss of a son resolved the conflict shared by the families for centuries. So in two deaths comes a new beginning for others. ...read more.

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