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How does Shakespeare create a variety of moods in Act 1 scene 5 of 'Romeo and Juliet'?

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How does Shakespeare create a variety of moods in Act 1 scene 5 of 'Romeo and Juliet'? 'Romeo and Juliet' is a play full of extremes and opposites. The most obvious opposite is the theme of love and hate that the play is based around. The younger and older generations are also another opposite, as the older generation take things in moderation, whereas the younger generation are very hasty. Opposites are shown in different ways throughout the play. One of the ways is through the characters. Benvolio is the peacekeeper in the play, and his rival Tybalt is extremely fiery. This leads to major conflict as the opposite personalities clash. Throughout the play Romeo suffers from extreme mood swings. The first obvious one is, on the first day of the play, he is melancholic about Rosaline, but by the evening he is in love with Juliet. As the play is so full of extremes and opposites, the mood in each scene changes frequently. At the beginning of Act 1 scene 5, the mood is light-hearted and chaotic. Shakespeare creates the chaotic mood in many ways. Up to line 15 there are a lot of stage directions of actors going in and out. This creates the atmosphere of it being very busy without the use of scenery. The chaotic mood is also created by the use of imperatives. ...read more.


This helps create a vision of the surroundings that could not be shown through scenery. However, from line 41 to 53, Romeo replaces the fun, lively mood for a more romantic, serious mood. He had just spotted Juliet across the dance floor and recites a soliloquy about her beauty. This is a dramatic device used to inform the audience of a character's feelings. In this case, it is used to show Romeo's love towards Juliet. The verse structure changes too, it goes from blank verse to rhyming couplets. This is significant because Elizabethan love poetry was also written in this way. This again helps convey the feeling of love. Romeo uses metaphors to help convey Juliet's radiance, "Shows a snowy dove trooping with crows", " as a rich jewel in an Ethiop's ear". These metaphors suggest how much more beautiful she is in comparison to everyone around her, and how she stands out. Shakespeare uses clich�d language to show the irony of the situation. Romeo says, "Did my heart love till now?" This is incredibly ironic as only hours before he was declaring how much he was in love with Rosaline. This suggests the fickleness and artificialness of young love. In contrast, the next part has an entirely different mood. The romance is destroyed by Tybalt's words of anger and hatred. Shakespeare uses insulting language and imperatives to create a more aggressive scene. ...read more.


By carrying the metaphor on it also shows that their feelings are reciprocated, and allows Juliet and Romeo to flirt with each other. At first Juliet plays hard to get and does not let Romeo kiss her, but when they finally do, it just enhances the romantic mood. However the nurse, who comes to take Juliet away to her mother, soon destroys the atmosphere. It is then that Romeo discovers that Juliet is a Capulet, which in turn makes the scene feel ominous. That feeling is then enhanced my Romeo talking of death again, "My life is my foe's debt." Shakespeare uses this change of mood to remind the audience of the prologue at the beginning where he tells the audience about two families feuding causing younger lovers to die. Juliet says, "Prodigious birth of love is it to me," which again reminds us of the prologue and how they are "star-crossed lovers." Throughout this scene the moods change from chaotic to lively and excited, then to a more serious romantic mood when Romeo first sets eyes on Juliet. This is then contrasted with an angry, threatening mood by Tybalt before turning to a flirtatious playful mood. The scene ends on an ominous note as the audience is reminded that the two lovers who have just met die tragically and that their love does not last long. Shakespeare does this by using language, sentence structure and verse form effectively to change the mood, and help convey the surroundings as well. By Emma Stanley 10f ...read more.

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