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Romeo and Juliet - analysing act 3, scene 1, concentrating on how Shakespeare makes this scene dramatic and how it is pivotal in terms of the plays key themes and events.

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Romeo and Juliet English coursework Romeo and Juliet is a play filled with love, fate, rivalry and tragedy. I am going to be analysing act 3, scene 1, concentrating on how Shakespeare makes this scene dramatic and how it is pivotal in terms of the plays key themes and events. Prior to this scene we have witnessed the rivalry between the two leading families, Capulet and Montague and the hostility they hold towards one another. Romeo, the son of a Montague, turns up uninvited to a ball at the Capulet mansion where he proceeds to fall in love with Juliet the only daughter of sir Capulet. Juliet returns Romeos affections and hoping they might at last unite the families and put an end to the feud, they decide to get married in secret. Tybalt, a quarrelsome Capulet, having recognised Romeo at the ball is angered but his audacity at gate crashing. Tybalt takes it as a personal insult and is determined to get revenge on Romeo. In act 3, scene 1 Tybalt confronts Romeo, but with his marriage still fresh in his mind Romeo refuses to jeopardise his relationship with Juliet by fighting with Tybalt. ...read more.


Mercutio rejects Benvolio's suggestion to leave the streets, he playfully mocks Benvolio's attempt to prevent an argument by characterising him as extremely quarrelsome. "Thou wilt quarrel with a man for cracking nuts, having no other reason but because thou hast hazel eyes" This is ironic because later on in the play it is Mercutio that provokes Tybalt and encourages an argument. "And but one word with one of us? Couple it with something, make it a word and a blow." Mercutio winds up Tybalt and when Romeo refuses to fight it is Mercutio that draws his sword on Tybalt. It is Mercutio's false misguided sense of honour, which will ironically contribute to the death of Romeo. Mercutio's death is quite drawn out adding drama to the scene. We know this because Mercutio makes a final speech before his death. He jokes using puns and curses the feuding families. "A plague a' both your houses" This is again foreshadowing as Romeo and Juliet both die meaning both families suffer the grief of loosing a loved member. Even in the face of death Mercutio is still witty. He assures Romeo that he is in good health but the pun he uses tells us something different. ...read more.


"Here come the furious Tybalt back again." His role as the peacemaker contrasts with Tybalt who is always angry and ready to fight. He is often overshadowed by the stronger characters Mercutio and Tybalt and the fact that he disappears after the scene shows that Shakespeare used him for dramatic effect. In conclusion this scene is pivotal because it is the scene from which the play turns from love into tragedy. It is the unfortunate events including the death of two leading characters Mercutio and Tybalt and Romeos reactions to his friends death that mark the turning point. Shakespeare makes this scene dramatic with his use of foreshadowing, irony and humour. He also uses the Romeos temperamental character and Benvolio's contrast with Tybalt to add drama to the scene. It is Romeos love for Juliet that allows him to keep his composure and it is his loyalty and strong friendship with Mercutio that makes him seek revenge. Violence, fate and love all appear in this scene in the feelings and actions of various characters. Although the tale of Romeo and Juliet is a sad one Shakespeare shows that the death of these star crossed lovers is the only way the families will finally accept reconciliation and is therefore not a complete tragedy. Becky Wilson page 1 ...read more.

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