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Romeo and Juliet : GCSE assuagement : preparation work

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Romeo and Juliet : GCSE assuagement : preparation work Describe the character of the nurse. Why does Shakespeare include her in the play? What is her function in the play and what does she add to the audience's interest? The nurse isn't one of the play's main characters but she plays an important part of the play because she is the person how pushes the plot forward (for example she is the one who arranges Romeo and Juliet's wedding). She also helps the audience understand the play by being a simple character in the middle of a complicated plot. The nurse has an important part in the play she is the messenger. Shakespeare copied this type character from 'Greek tragedy'. Shakespeare used this type of character in many of his plays but in Romeo and Juliet the messenger - the nurse, is so mach more than just a messenger. She is a real character, which makes the audience laugh and cry, and she expresses her feeling as they were an important part of the plot although they aren't. ...read more.


The nurse expresses her affection to Juliet by calling her nicknames like "lamb", "lady bird" and she talks freely around Juliet in informal-language although Juliet is qualified as the nurse's employer. The nurse doesn't show this kind of affection to anybody else except Juliet. She refers to other family members in formal language but she gains confidence to tell rude jokes only when Juliet is around. On the other hand, Juliet is also close to the nurse. She shows this closeness in act 1 scene 5, when she tells the nurse, she is in love with a Montague... Juliet is forbidden of loving a person from the Montague family because she is a member of the Capulet family - the eternal enemy of the Montague family. So by telling the nurse that she is in love with a Montague, she tells the nurse her biggest secret, this shows the nurse is reliable and trustworthy. ...read more.


At the beginning of the scene Romeo also tells rude jokes about her but after Mercutio and Benvolio leave he treats her in a very polite manner. This kind of rudeness would immediately make the audience laugh when the nurse enters the stage. The nurse treats Romeo well because he is Juliet's love. When he offers her money she does every thing not to take it. All of these points change after the nurse refuses to tell Juliet about her marriage to Romeo. Then both Juliet and the audience start being annoyed with her. Juliet stops her closeness to the nurse and the audience fined the more obnoxious properties in her. The way she tries making herself more noticeable is now more irritating than amusing like it was before, her jokes are no longer funny they are rude and stupid. She isn't romantic, she is irresponsible because she is encouraging Romeo and Juliet's marriage and she will seem even less responsible further on in the play when she will encourage Paris and Juliet's marriage. ...read more.

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