• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

In the scenes with Lady Capulet, Juliet and the Nurse, Shakespeare presents his audience with a true-to-life set of relationships. Do you feel any empathy with these three women?

Extracts from this document...


In the scenes with Lady Capulet, Juliet and the Nurse, Shakespeare presents his audience with a true-to-life set of relationships. Do you feel any empathy with these three women? "Nurse, where's my daughter? call her forth to me.". This begins our relationship with Shakespeare's three principal women of this play, Romeo and Juliet. We cannot always sympathise with these women, we can see why they are feeling the way they do. We can empathise with these women because their relationships are a reflection of real life situations. One of the most obvious traits of these relationships is the fact that Juliet's relationship with her mother is distinctly formal. Juliet replies to her mother's call with, "Madam, I am here, what is your will?", she refers to her mother as 'madam' and from the outset seems desperate to please her, immediately asking what is wanted of her. Perhaps Juliet is slightly scared of her mother; she clearly does not know her very well and maybe she would be threatened with physical violence if she did not do what her parents asked of her. Again, when Juliet and Lady Capulet discuss marriage, Juliet answers her mother with, "I'll look to like, if looking liking move; But no more deep will I endart mine eye Than your consent gives strength to make it fly." ...read more.


Juliet shows no hesitation in revealing her love for Romeo. The fact that Juliet trusts the Nurse with this dark secret clearly demonstrates a strong bond between these two women, particularly as Juliet's parents are present but she chooses to confide in the Nurse. This could be due to the Nurse's lesser part in the family feud and also the fact that the Nurse knows and loves Juliet and is much less likely to react badly to the situation. This aspect of their relationship is developed as in Act 2 Scene 5, the Nurse teases Juliet as Juliet tries to flatter news of Romeo out of her. The Nurse has seen Juliet grow up and clearly wants happiness for her, after all she is going back and forth on behalf of Juliet's love for Romeo. Just how dire this situation could turn is hinted at when the Nurse breaks her talk of Romeo with "Where is your mother?" If Lady Capulet were to find out that the Nurse had been keeping things from her, she would not hesitate to fire her and jobs like this would probably be rare, and would be especially hard to find after the Nurse had been fired for being untrustworthy in a previous job. ...read more.


She sends the nurse away with "Go in, and tell my lady I am gone," She is now commanding the Nurse, and treating her as a servnt rather than a friend. Comparing this stiff conversation to their jolly chat earlier in the play, it is clear that Juliet has grown up a lot and perhaps replaced the anchor of the Nurse with Romeo. And finally, in Scene 5 of Act 4, we see that despite her formality and commanding nature, Lady Capulet was very attached to her daughter. "O lamentable day!" she cries, when she believes Juliet to be dead. Perhaps, she had been surpressing a motherly instinct towards Juliet to obey the etiquette of the time. Things are perhaps even worse for the Nurse, who thought Juliet would marry Paris and things would, at last, go well. This aspect of the play has a lot of social significance, because the relationships translate into real life, and in empathising with these three women we can empathise with people around us. Also, in comparing the set of relationships at the beginning and end of the play, we can see how easy it is to turn a stable situation on its head. This play would probably have been even more significant at the time it was written, when the etiquette and relationships were even more relevant to real life than they are today. ?? ?? ?? ?? ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Romeo and Juliet section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Romeo and Juliet essays

  1. Lord Capulet, How good a father do you feel he is to Juliet

    Juliet's nurse then tries to stick up for her, and Capulet is even nasty to her: 'Peace, you mumbling fool! Utter gravity o'er gossip's bowl, For here we need it not'. He knows that Juliet is totally dependant on her family and would probably not survive without them, he uses

  2. Explain you response to the character of Juliet, exploring the ways in which Shakespeare ...

    Shakespeare has created this type of relationship between Juliet and her parents on purpose to generate sympathy amongst the audience for a girl who is kind and affectionate but unfortunate as she is trapped between her parents who don't pay attention to her and want their desires above hers.

  1. How does Shakespeare portray family relationships in Romeo and Juliet? What comparisons can we ...

    Yet another thing I have learnt about family relationships is that in Act 3 Scene 4 Capulet thinks he is doing what is best for Juliet, however he doesn't seem to realize that most of her grieving is to do with the fact Romeo has banished.

  2. Romeo & Juliet - Lady Capulet

    This means, now I will tell you the good news. We can not see Lady Capulet's expression on her face as she has her back to the camera but her tone of voice is happy and cheerful. It sounds as if she is delivering a message.

  1. Violence and conflict are central to Romeo and Juliet. Discuss this theme with reference ...

    A plague a'both your houses!...Your houses." Shakespeare has continued to replicate the curse, because this highlights its prominence for the Elizabethan audience, who held a supreme belief in them, and also the inclusion of three repetitions will stay with the viewers.

  2. How would a modern and Elizabethan audience react to the way that Shakespeare portrays ...

    The conversation between Juliet and her mother is stilted and proper, whereas the Nurse is very open with her opinions, advice, and feelings with Juliet, and when talking about Paris, she talks like a fellow teenage girl gossiping about Paris' looks: "A man, young lady!

  1. Romeo and Juliet - The changing relationships between Juliet and her parents, Lord and ...

    not do anything if Juliet doesn't approve of the match, only if she falls in love with Count Paris and agrees herself, will he allow them to marry. Juliet herself first appears in Act 1 Scene 3 with her mother Lady Capulet and the nurse.

  2. Explain the way Shakespeare presents the relationship between Juliet, Lady Capulet and the Nurse ...

    of a daughter of that time, portraying Juliet as compliant and submissive to her parents? demands. The rhyming couplet and regular rhythm and rhyme used here almost give it a sing-song quality, as if Juliet had rehearsed what she says.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work