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In what ways is Act 3 scene 1, one of the key and most dramatic scenes in Shakespeare's 'Romeo and Juliet?'

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Introduction

A bitter feud arguably creates yet another quarrel between the Montague and Capulet families in Shakespeare's infamous opening to the play 'Romeo and Juliet' yet through all this violence two young, star-crossed lovers meet to start a loving journey which eventually leads to their tragic demise whilst experiencing the prominent themes of the play: Tragedy, hate, death and revenge. Prior to Act 3 scene 1, Juliet secretly marries Romeo by the help of Friar Lawrence, as he wants to end the feud between the two families. Since Romeo is now Tybalt's cousin, the feud will not continue but as Romeo kills Tybalt, you see that his peacefulness is gone and his fury is finally shown. In contrast to this by the end of Act 2, the audience are left in a state of happiness as the mood of love fills the air. Shakespeare's use of marriage is effectively applied here as in other Shakespeare plays marriage is always the ending but in this significant play, he used marriage in the middle of 'Romeo and Juliet' indicating that something negative is about to take place. ...read more.

Middle

Tybalts arrival adds tension to the scene because the audience know something terrible is going to happen. The conversation that tells us a fight is about to happen is moment Mercutio and Tybalt start speaking "make it a word and a blow" The audience will find this scene exciting to watch, as both Mercutio and Tybalt are 2 volatile equally matched angry men. This creates explosive dramatic action. Benvolio alerts the audience of the serious consequences if Mercutio and Tybalt fight in public by reminding them of the Princes threat, which was that if they had another brawl they would die. "We talk here in the public haunt of men: Either withdraw unto some private place, Or reason coldly of your grievances, Or else depart; here all eyes gaze on us." When Romeo enters, further tension is mounted, as he is the one who Tybalt wants to quarrel with. Prior to the scene, Romeo had married Juliet. ...read more.

Conclusion

When Romeo finally kills Tybalt the joyous event is quickly turned into sorrow as Romeo realises that he has jeopardised his future with Juliet. Romeo's line, 'I am fortunes fool' was the turn to sorrow as he realised that he has killed a Capulet, a cousin of his. During this scene there were mixed emotions that took place. At the start of the scene when Romeo met with Tybalt, there was love for Tybalt by Romeo while Tybalt had no remorse for Romeo but just to fight with him. But when Mercutio died under Romeo's arm, he went after Tybalt in rage. Act 3 Scene 1 was an imperative scene to R+J as without this scene there would be no tragedy to pursue. This helps bring about the differences of the two families and the way they felt after experiencing the death of their kinsman and also the Capulets undergo through the death of their very own cousin Tybalt. After showing that conflict can lead to fate one of Shakespeare's themes he also shows the factor it could change the turning of a play. ...read more.

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