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Romeo and Juliet

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GCSE ENGLISH AND ENGLISH LITERATURE COURSEWORK- ROMEO AND JULIET Explore the roles of the parents in 'Romeo and Juliet' The tragedy of "Romeo and Juliet" is the result of feuding between two noble families in Verona, the Montague's and the Capulet's. Romeo (son of Montague) and Juliet (daughter of Capulet) fall in love at first sight and must keep their affection secret from their family. If the parents found out about what was going on, the hatred would increase and cause more conflict. It would have also made Romeo and Juliet outcasts with the rest of the family and made them both unforgivable to their parents. This indicates that the important relationship between the parents was distant and conspicuous. Today, children are given more freedom and have the right to choose who they marry after the age of 18, and with the parents consent, allowed to marry after the age of 16. Relationships between parents and children at the historic time at which the play is set in comparison with the present is different as children had to obey everything their parents commanded and had to respect their wishes. This was particular with wealthy and powerful families as they had high expectations and statuses henceforth being important to the society. Although this was a common in 1600s, early marriage still happens today in countries like India. A 'wet nurse' often brought up children from noble families and her job was to breast feed the newborn and look after her as if she was indeed the real mother. ...read more.


The nurse tells Juliet she 'wast the prettiest babe that e'er I nurs'd and I might live to see thee married once, I have my wish' and 'Go girl, seek happy nights to happy days' advising her to have a good sex life as well as having a good time during the day. At the time in which the play was set, the life expectancy wasn't very high due to poor quality of medical treatment, so people got married at a young age(when puberty has run its course) and had children early in married life, whereas many people today get married after 24 and have children after 28. The figure given above is not totally true as many people get married earlier, although it is rare to get married before 20 in the U.K. In Act 2 Scene 5 we see the close, friendly but childish relationship between Juliet and the Nurse as Juliet becomes sycophantic towards the nurse: referring to her as 'O honey nurse', 'good sweet nurse' and 'Sweet, sweet, sweet nurse' to get her opinion of Romeo, and his disposition of marriage. The repetition of the word 'sweet' shows desperation and this is how she is portrayed in both versions of the film. Baz Lurhmenn portrays the Nurse in the film to act tired saying she's so tired to speak, her muscles' ache, covers her in sweat and makes a totally drowsy person, whereas the usual Nurse is the character that always has something to say. In Baz Lurhmenn's version of the film, Juliet begins to massage the Nurse, gives the Nurse water and pesters the Nurse for the information she can't wait to find out. ...read more.


The difference that can be seen was that families are a lot closer with one another and that secrets are shared and parents know about their childrens' love life. There are many consequences the play has due to the influences of the relationship. The distance between Romeo and his parents meant he could sneak into an enemy's ball. Here he met Juliet and is where the love in his life began and tragically ended. If Juliet was closer with her parents, there would've been a great probability she wouldn't have fallen for Romeo, once they found out their families were enemies and taken more interest in Paris and agreed to marry him. Shakespeare was very clever using double meaning jokes ( Act 1 Scene 1- Fight between the servants) and puns. Using elements like this, and reflecting his plays with life like elements for example the relations reflected wealthy people in those times, bought the plays to life, making comedies more funny, history more real and tragedies more sad. William Shakespeare cleverly used iambic pentameter to show the difference between high status and important characters and less important characters like the nurse. He also used rhyming couplets to show something important was taking place, or yet again to show someone important speaking. This was used to identify differences when an important person suddenly stopped used rhythm in his speech. Overall, Shakespeare's techniques were very clever and copied by many authors today. His choice of language created bigger atmospheres with scenes Romeo and Juliet were together or with their parents, and his reference to real life reflected to the story line of the play. ...read more.

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Related GCSE Romeo and Juliet essays

  1. Comparing two versions of Romeo & Juliet (Zefferelli and Baz Luhram).

    around Juliet first; this is because she seemed in the play to have a closer relationship to Juliet than her mother or father. The nurse treats Juliet almost as her own child, this idea is put forward as the nurse had been Juliet´┐Żs main parental model as she had been nursing her since a very young age.

  2. "Girls are more mature than Boys."

    Juliet is very mature about the whole thing, though, she talks about marriage and virginity with her mother and nurse, as if it is a normal thing to be doing at thirteen. She would like to marry for love; this shows the romantic side in her: "If thou dost love, pronounce it faithfully."

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