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

Romeo and Juliet

Free essay example:

Romeo and Juliet GCSE Essay

Lord Capulet talks to Count Paris about the wedding arrangements. A decision has been made that Juliet and Count Paris will be married by Thursday at St Peters church. Lord Capulet then tells Lady Capulet to Inform Juliet of the arrangement to prepare herself for the wedding. Lady Capulet goes to tell Juliet of the good news. Lord Capulet is very ecstatic that his daughter will be marrying the wealthy and handsome Count Paris. He expects Juliet to be delighted over the news, and wants her to get over her cousins death. Juliet’s mother to is excited and believes Juliet will agree as she is an obedient child. When Lord Capulet goes and sees Juliet in Her bed chamber, and she tells her father that she does not wish to marry Count Paris. Her father is astonished to find that his respectful and obedient daughter has just gone against his commands. He shouts at her and calls her names. Her mother does not step in to stop the argument but stands and overlooks, the nurse tries to calm things down but the anger of Lord Capulet silences her.  

Before this scene Capulet is respectful towards his daughter and cares for her wellbeing, when she goes against her fathers orders, his attitude towards her completely changes. She fears this and tries to come to terms with him, but there is nothing for her to stop this. The mother is not very close to Juliet, and her attitude does not change after the scene. The nurse is very close to Juliet and is more like a mother figure to her then her own mother, after the scene takes place the nurse shows a complete change and Juliet is shocked to see it.

This scene of the play is every important as all the changes in the characters take place here, this is when Juliet for the first time goes against her fathers wishes and is like a new chapter of her, as she plans to fake her own death and leave Verona with Romeo. Slowly we see the true personalities of each of the characters beginning to emerge. This gives us a better understanding of what is to come. This part of the play is very effective as we begin to wonder what Juliet will now do in this situation and whether she will have to give in and do as her father says. It draws us into the play more and we feel a sense of foreboding. The structure of the play changes very quickly throughout the scene. When lady Capulet come to tell Juliet of the good news the mood is very joyful, when Juliet tells her mother that she does not wish to marry Count Paris then it seems to become quite agitated and when the father shouts insults at her and the nurse tells her how she feels about her getting married to count Paris it suddenly changes to tragedy.

Lady Capulet is quite a stern lady and also quite proud. She is dominated by lord Capulet and does not have a say in much as Lord Capulet makes all the decisions. She does not seem to interact much with Juliet and does not come in the play very often. Before she comes to tell Juliet of the proposal from Count Paris she acts tenderly towards Juliet and Juliet find it unusual for her mother to come and see her early in the morning, “Who is’t that calls? It is my lady mother. Is she not down so late, or up so early? What unaccustom’d cause procures her hither?”. It is not normal for her other to come and visit her. She thinks that marriage is suited for Juliet at her age as this was the same time she was married. When Juliet tells her mother that she believes she is too young to get married. Lady Capulet becomes quite cold towards her and she does not seem to understand her. When she comes into Juliet’s bed chamber and she sees Juliet crying she makes comments about Romeo and believes Juliet is crying over the death of Tybalt, “Evermore weeping for your cousin’s death? What wilt thou wash him from his grave with tears? And if thou couldst, thou couldst not make him live; Therefore have done. Some grief shows much love, But much of grief shows still some want of wit”. And when Juliet says “Yet let me weep for such a feeling of loss.” She is talking about the fact that Romeo has left Verona and she does’nt know whether she will see him again. She is not crying over Tybalts death and her mother has read her wrong, this shows the understanding her mother has of her daughter .She is receiving mixed messages from Juliet. She takes it the completely wrong way in this scene we can see that Lady Capulet does not talk to her daughter much and cannot recognise her feelings.

Lord Capulet is a very bold man, he is a generous father and cares for his family but he is also very strict and people must respect his choices. Lady Capulet looks up to him as he is the breadwinner of the house. Juliet is very obedient to her father and always does as he commands. The nurse is very polite to him but sometimes answers him back. He believes in marriage but at first is quite unsure of getting Juliet married off because she is too young, but takes marriage as a very important issue. Before the scene Lord Capulet is a caring and doting father and cares for Juliet a lot. Paris’s   proposal to Juliet and her rejection, changes the relationship. Juliet seems scared when she sees him angry and tries to reassure him “Not proud you have, but thankful that you have: Proud can I never be of what I hate, But thankful even for hate that is meant love. He shouts insults at Juliet for contradicting him and loses his patience “How how, how how, chopped- logic? What is this? ‘Proud’, and ‘I thank you’, and ‘I thank you not’, Thank me no thankings, nor proud me no prouds, But fettle your fine joints ‘gainst Thursday next, To go with Paris to Saint Peter’s Church, Or I will drag thee on a hurdle thither. Out, you green-sickness carrion! Out, you baggage! You tallow-face!”. Shakespeare shows Lord Capulet portraying his anger very effectively when he states “My fingers itch” this tells us he is so angry he wants to slap Juliet. And when he shouts insults at her one after the other this shows how out of control his anger is.

Lord Capulet believes he is superior to women, he treats the nurse quite harshly when the nurse steps in when he is shouting at Juliet and says “God in heaven bless her! You are to blame, my lord, to rate her so”. This makes Lord Capulet very angry as he thinks no lady should answer him back and he replies to her, “And why, my lady Wisdom? Hold your tongue, Good prudence, smatter with your gossip, go.” “Peace you mumbling fool! Utter your gravity o’er a gossip’s bowl, for here we need it not.” He is very disrespectful towards the nurse. He orders his wife to go and tell Juliet of the wedding arrangements, he orders the women about and does not see them as equal to him. As far as he is concerned he is a dutiful father and has done the best for his daughter by finding her a very accomplished husband. His daughter as far as he is concerned is turning out to be a very “disobedient wretch”.

The Nurse is a very prominent character she is very faithful to Juliet and very trustworthy, she is common in speech and not very well educated. She has a very strong relationship with Juliet unlike her mother, she understands what Juliet is like, She always wants to help Juliet and stands up for her when Lord Capulet insults her. The nurse acted as a messenger between Romeo and Juliet and didn’t tell the truth to Lord and Lady Capulet. This makes her quite disloyal to the Capulet family but as she was the one who brought Juliet up and has been with them for a very long time, she is respected by Lady Capulet and Juliet a lot. When Lord Capulet tells Juliet to marry Count Paris and she disobeys, and he storms out of the room she turns to the nurse for help after asking her mother who declined, but the nurse seems to have taken a change and tell Juliet “Faith, here it is: Romeo is banish’d, and all the world to nothing that he dares ne’er come back to challenge you; Or if he do, it needs must be by stealth. Then since the case so stands as now it doth, I think it best you married with the county. O, he’s a lovely gentleman! Romeo’s a dishclout to him. An eagle, madam, Hath not so green, so quick, so fair an eye as Paris hath. Beshrew my very heart, I think you are happy in this second match, for it excels you first, or if it did not, your first is dead, or ‘twere as good he were as living here and you no use of him.”  Juliet is shocked to hear this and replies “Speak’st thou from thy heart? And the nurse says “and from my soul too, else beshrew them both”. We feel that she has let Juliet down and after all these years of trust Juliet has drawn away from her, she feels lonely and now has no one to share her feelings with. The person whom she expected the most support from has unexpectedly betrayed her. This is now why she decides to go ahead with the plan of faking her death.

Juliet is now changed herself and has become rebellious, she does not share her plans with anyone except Friar Lawrence, everyone had somehow contributed to her decision of running away from Verona in time of need no one was there to give her advice so this led her to make her decision. The father changed from being a caring respectful father, to threatening her and abusing her. The mother changed from being quite distant from her to voicing her opinions and trying to comfort Juliet, but not sticking up for her and washing her hands off her. The nurse underwent he most dramatic change, from being someone who encouraged Juliet in her romance with Romeo and being Juliet’s ally betraying Juliet in her hour of need and becoming helpless. The father mother and nurse all contributed to the death of Juliet in someway. The nurse should not have been a go-between Romeo and Juliet and become so involved and then give up and stop and tell Juliet to marry Count Paris instead this was a big blow for Juliet and effected her very much. Lady Capulet should have supported her when she was getting insulted by her father but she did not. The father should not have forced Juliet into marriage and should have considered her feelings about it, it was Lord Capulet who put the most pressure on Juliet and eventually led her to her grave.

Shakespeare is trying to make a comment about the human behaviour and how people can be unpredictable and change when put under pressure. He is also trying to show that the words you say can push people to such an extent that it can lead to their death. He also shows how people can live with each other and still be like strangers and not have an understanding of each other. Communication of emotions is vital for understanding.  And people should be more considerate towards other people’s feelings, and force can never solve the problem. Each individual has their own choices and they should be respected whether people agree with them or not.

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

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