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How does Shakespeare use language to establish a variety of attitudes to love and marriage in Acts One and Two of Romeo and Juliet?

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How does Shakespeare use language to establish a variety of attitudes to love and marriage in Acts One and Two of "Romeo and Juliet"? The play 'Romeo and Juliet' explores many very different views of 'love' and marriage. As well as love being expressed in the obvious loving way, it is sometimes expressed in a vulgar and hostile way. The play shows two approaches to love; the first being a sexual, more physical relationship, and the second being romantic and spiritual. There are also two approaches to marriage; the first is to do with status and money instead of love and the second is more spiritual and romantic; the declaration of love between two people in the eyes of God. The play begins with the nadir of society, Sampson and Gregory. Sampson and Gregory have a low status because they are servants of the Montague's. They frequently use barbaric and violent language to assert themselves despite their lack of power or status. They have a crude and barbaric attitude to people of the opposite sex. ...read more.


And he suggest to Paris to wait "two more summer" before she is "ripe to be a bride. However, Lady Capulet disagrees with this idea as at Juliet's age she had already married and given birth. "I was your mother much upon these years that you are now a maid". She sees marriage as a financial transaction and a way of boosting the social status of the Capulet's. Lady Capulet's idea of 'love' in a marriage is based on tolerance. "Can you like of Paris' love?" In Lady Capulet's eyes, a man is like an incomplete book without a cover .And only by marrying a woman will the 'book' be complete. "This precious book of love, this unbound lover, to beautify him, only lacks a cover". Mercutio is Romeo's best friend. He is a misogynist who has a very negative view of 'love'. This is clearly show by the language he uses to describe, and eventually degrade, the opposite sex. "Pricked from the lazy finger of a maid" the image he creates, as well as many other images, is used in an attempt to humiliate females. ...read more.


This is shows the fickleness of youth in Romeo, as just minutes before Rosaline was the love of his life and believed he would never love anyone but her. His love towards Juliet then becomes spiritual, with many religious and biblical references; "My lips, two blushing pilgrims, ready stand to smooth that rough touch with a tender kiss" These words show that Romeo find their love is not just physical connection, but a more deep spiritual true 'love' . He makes symbolic references when he refers Juliet to light; "Arise, fair sun, and kill the envious moon" This shows Romeo trying to describe Juliet's radiant beauty in a poetic manner. Romeo sees marriage as a spiritual bonding between two people who are in love; "and all combined, save what thou must combine by holy marriage" This shows that he believes the only way two people can be joined is only by marriage. At the beginning of the play Juliet has no desire to be in love or to get married by saying; "It is an honour I dream not of". It shows that she has no thoughts or ideas of love and marriage at the beginning of the play. ...read more.

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