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Romeo and Juliet - Explain in detail how you think Shakespeare builds up tension and excitement in Act 3 Scene 1.

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Introduction

Edward Phillips July 2002 Romeo and Juliet Assignment Explain in detail how you think Shakespeare builds up tension and excitement in Act 3 Scene 1 Although he is unaware that Romeo has secretly married Juliet, Benvolio is frightened of meeting the Capulets because he knows that a fight is bound to follow:- I pray thee, good Mercutio, let's retire: The day is hot, the Capulets abroad, And, if we meet, we shall not scape a brawl; For now, these hot days, is the mad blood stirring. Mercutio, however, laughs at his fears and accuses Benvolio of being a quick-tempered quarreller:- Come, come, thou art as hot a Jack in thy mood as any in Italy, and as soon moved to be moody, and as soon moody to be moved. He accuses Benvolio of being short-tempered and critical and Benvolio's reply that if he were as quick to pick a quarrel as Mercutio is an omen about Mercutio's death :- An I were so apt to quarrel as thou art, any man should buy the fee-simple of my life for an hour and a quarter. ...read more.

Middle

Romeo, however, refuses to accept the challenge and will not fight, even though he feels insulted at being called a villain. He even tells Tybalt that he loves him and tries to make peace with him:- I do protest, I never injured thee, But love thee better than thou canst devise, Till thou shalt know the reason of my love: And so, good Capulet,--which name I tender As dearly as my own,--be satisfied. He has secretly married Juliet and sees Tybalt as a kinsman. Mercutio gets angry that Romeo refuses to fight:- O calm, dishonourable, vile submission! Alla stoccata carries it away. And draws his sword, challenging Tybalt. Romeo again tries to make peace and persuades Benvolio to help him:- Draw, Benvolio; beat down their weapons. Gentlemen, for shame, forbear this outrage! Tybalt, Mercutio, the prince expressly hath Forbidden bandying in Verona streets: Hold, Tybalt! good Mercutio! but Tybalt has already drawn his sword. ...read more.

Conclusion

The tension increases as the Prince starts to speak. He is furious with Romeo that Tybalt has died and banishes him from Verona:- Immediately we do exile him hence: I will be deaf to pleading and excuses; Nor tears nor prayers shall purchase out abuses: If Romeo is found, he will be killed. This leaves the audience on a knife-edge. The tension is building up and we are left at the end of this scene wondering if Romeo will be found and if he is, whether he will survive, and if he dies, how Juliet will react. There is a lot of conflict in this scene, and the exciting but tragic fight, adds to the tension. It also marks the mid-point of the play and we can see how emotions lead to violence and how violence leads to death. The deaths in this scene provide dramatic excitement and also prepare us for the later tragedy. There is going to be even more tension and excitement throughout the play. ...read more.

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